Friday, March 31, 2006
Indigenous Mexicans Demand Their Land Back
Such a point is one that some bleeding heart liberals have espoused over the past few decades. Which is why Columbus Day has become persona non grata in some places. How far back in history should we go to determine who should have what land? Let's say we use 1500 A.D. for the North America continent or should we go back to the Anasazi?
Whatever time we decide, with today's technology we can then perform DNA analysis on every person and determine their strongest heritage. Based upon that each person will then move to the location of the ancestral home of their genetic heritage. Simple.
Somehow, I think most of those protestors would end up back in Mexico and some in Spain. The Anasazi and Pueblo dominated most of what is now the Southwest United States. I'm guessing most of the Indians of Mexica trace back to the Aztecs and Mayans.
But all of this is baloney. What we need is a touch of reality. Cultures and nations have fought and conquered each other for all time. The indigenous people of the Americas were no different. Unfortunately, they came into conflict with a civilization much more advanced technologically than themselves and lost. Don't expect me to feel guilty, etc.
Millions of people have entered the U.S. since its founding. Through assimilation, hard work, etc. people from all points of the Earth have found a rewarding life here. Millions more can in the future. Is it too much to ask to do it legally?
Where is William Glasser when we need him?
Slap Happy Victims
I've never been slapped in the face by a woman, that I can remember anyway. But I've probably been slapped on the shoulder and back several hundred times. At work a group of us usually play card during our lunch hour. One young woman habitually slapped any man sitting next to her on the shoulder when ever he beat her in a close hand or made a joking but mildly offensive comment. Finally after about 4 years she got the message that when we said stop, we meant it. But she obviously believed it was her given right as a woman to slap any man for any reason.
Apparently Rep. Cynthia McKinney feels much the same way. In McKinney's case you can probably add the arrogance of power to her reasoning. McKinney reaches new heights in victimology by claiming to a victim because she's black, a because she's female and a victim because she's a black female in Congress. Poor, pitiful Cynthia.
But at a news conference, the Georgia Democrat said the matter was "instigated by the inappropriate touching and stopping of me, a female, black congresswoman."In today's terrorism climate is it any wonder the policeman stopped her. Is every policeman supposed to visually recognize every Senator, Congressperson and other officials? What would have been the reaction if someone entered the Capital with a weapon, explosive, poison gas, etc.?
Earlier in the day, her lawyer said she was "just a victim of being in Congress while black."
Attorney James Myart said that McKinney was a "victim of excessive use of force" because "of how she looks and the color of her skin."
WSB-TV in Atlanta reported that the officer didn't recognize her on Wednesday and tried to stop her from entering a House office building without first going through a metal detector.
McKinney is a six-term Congresswoman. Therefore it took about 11 or 12 years for her to be victimized for being a black female Congresswoman. Boy, the bigots sure are getting slow.
It's time women begin respecting men's bodies and personal space in the same way they insist men respect theirs. And for God's sake, Cynthia, if you're a victim, please let me be one with you in Congress.
BTW - the lady I made the comment to and I get along quite well and often exchange good natured barbs. I value her as a co-worker and make sure she knows it.
Thursday, March 30, 2006
SomeMost Days I'm a Smart Ass
She replied, "I could be better."
"I'll agree with that," I responded.
Illegal Immigration Problems
One thought struck me over and over again, the illegal immigration is screwed up from top to bottom and nothing they are planning on doing now will probably make much difference. Illegal immigration has become rampant because of lack of enforcement of our immigration laws. Making new tougher, different, more lenient laws probably won't make much difference. Enforcing the laws we already have probably would.
John McCain was on Hannity & Colmes. They talked about how many illegals were in the country, how much it would cost to round them up and deport them, etc. There are millions of illegals because McCain and his ilk sat around and did nothing while the problem festered and grew to epidemic proportions. Which is also why it would cost so much to round them up and deport them. Now McCain claims to have a solution to the problem he helped create. Don't bet on it.
Savage played bits of Dianne Feinstein's comments on the Senate floor. I just remember her saying, "some would call them illegal immigrants..." or something very close to that with the affect that she was having trouble considering illegal immigration illegal. It appears "undocumented worker" is the politically correct term.
It struck me that most, if not all, of the Senators are rich, powerful people who will enjoy wealth and its trappings for a long time to come. "Undocumented workers" will never be a threat to them but will provide plenty of landscaping services for their estates. Middle class and the lower classes of legitimate U.S citizens are the ones threatened by "undocumented workers." With "undocumented workers" willing to work below minimum wage and/or well below prevailing wage, legal citizens without special skills find it increasingly difficult to find work.
In his weekly address last Saturday, President Bush reverted to a worn out, blatantly false piece of crap phrase, that the "undocumented workers" are "doing the work that Americans won't do." Hogwash. Again, plenty of Americans want to do the work but Americans must be paid minimum wage and/or the prevailing wage. Americans won't work for less. "Undocumented workers" will.
The overwhelming majority of these politicians are maneuvering to try and look good while hoping to allow the businesses and the people who fund their campaigns to continue to make profits off exploiting the "undocumented workers" while Americans could use the work.
But a great part of the problem lies in that while Americans would do the work for a legal wage, there may well be more work needed to be done than Americans able to do it. We have allowed "undocumented workers" to freely enter into our country for so long that we are as economically dependent on them as they are on us.
If we consistently enforced immigration laws, over time the problem of "undocumented workers" would diminish. Virtually all the "undocumented workers" from Mexico return to Mexico on a regular basis. Simply make sure that in order to return they do so legally. This is not a quick fix but a slow fix may be better. The economy can adjust, businesses can adjust, no need for the 200,000 buses George Will says we would need to ship everybody back. They would eventually almost all go back by themselves.
But the Senators, Congressmen and Congresswomen, President Bush and all the other politicos need to cut the new speak. The problem is squarely their fault. In reality it seems unlikely they will effectively do anything to remedy it unless we vote out a significant number of them.
Final thoughts: What kind of pathetic country is Mexico any way? Literally millions of its citizens must leave it each year and work for meager, subpar wages in order to eke out a living. When you compare the standard of living in Mexico to the U.S. or Canada it's no wonder so many come here to work. What is a mystery is why demonstrators, of Mexican descent or whatever, would carry the flag of a country that can't provide the opportunity to earn enough to keep one's self or one's family alive for millions of its hard working citizens.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Near Fatal Attraction
Dr. Marianna Vardaka, that's right doctor, tried to run her ex-love off the road, followed him home, attacked him in his house while his wife watched and then tried to kick out the windows of the police cruiser when arrested. From The Cincinnati Enquirer:
First, the chief of gynecology at Jewish Hospital barged into her married ex-lover's house, started screaming and hit the man eight times while his wife hid in a bathroom, police say.Jewish Hospital is conducting an internal investigation to see if Dr. Vardaka will maintain her position there. "Patient safety is our highest concern," spokeswoman Erica Turan said. God, let's hope so.
Then, she tried to kick her way out of a deputy's cruiser after her arrest.
Vardaka tried to run Stephen Glawitsch off Interstate 275 when she followed him home from Northland Porsche in Forest Park.
Vardaka screamed at Marsha Glawitsch and hit Stephen Glawitsch in the face and on the head eight times. Marsha Glawitsch locked herself in a bathroom and called 911.
Vardaka harassed Stephen Glawitsch with phone calls for six weeks and threatened to "make sure (he) could not get another job in this area."
Stephen Glawitsch and Vardaka had an affair that he says ended two years ago. He also says he owed Vardaka money
Deputies reported that Vardaka was "fidgety, spacey and glassy-eyed" and she appeared to be "under the influence of an unknown drug or narcotic" when questioned.
The Amberley Village woman - who stands 5-feet-3 and weighs 104 pounds - also struggled with a deputy. While handcuffed in the back seat, she also tried to kick out a door window of the cruiser, deputies said.
Here are some excerpts for the 911 call placed by the attacked man's wife.
She’s nutsThe articles were not clear as to whether the victim was married at the time of the alleged affair.
“I don’t owe you anything. I don’t even know you lady,” Williams-Glawitsch says before turning her attention back to the dispatcher. “She’s nuts. This lady is insane.”
“I have a crazy lady in my house that I need to get out of here,” Williams-Glawitsch says. “I have no idea who she is. She’s accused my husband of having an affair.”
I've been looking for an available professional woman but I think I'll just keep looking.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Tougher Than Davy Crockett
Of course there are the usual sourpusses.
Although he says he never hurts the bear, Palmer and the bear's owner have been criticized by animal rights groups. Norfolk, Va.-based People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has sought to make owner Sam Mazzola a focal point of its national efforts to ban bear wrestling.It seems improbable that a 140 pound human could do serious harm to a 650 pound bear. It's crazy but is it any worse than the guy rough housing with his dog? Palmer makes a good point:
PETA is demanding that the U.S. Department of Agriculture revoke Mazzola's license to exhibit exotic animals. For a small fee, Mazzola allows people to wrestle the bear or have a picture taken inside a cage with his other bears or a tiger.
"Bears are probably eight times stronger than people," said Palmer, who is headed to Ohio State as a collegiate wrestler. "If they wanted to, they could do a whole lot of damage to people. But if they are having fun, like Ceaser was, then they will play with you all day."Anyone who watches Animal Planet knows that bears are one of the deadliest predators on earth. PETA needs to concentrate on outlawing mouse traps.
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center Has Money Troubles So It Wants Yours
the Freedom Center needs at least $2 million in annual funding from local, state or federal taxpayers starting in 2008.The center is an expensive endeavor for a typical family. Admission is $12 adults, $10 seniors, $8 children 6-12. For me and my three minor children a visit would cost $44. Not cheap.
But securing public money may be difficult, since many government officials say they thought the museum had promised that it wouldn't need ongoing taxpayer support. Combined, the city, county, state and federal governments contributed close to $40 million toward the $110 million campaign to build the 158,000-square-foot Freedom Center.
As early as 2002, when the museum broke ground in a star-filled ceremony that included first lady Laura Bush and boxing champion Muhammad Ali, the Freedom Center's finances were showing weakness, but the problems were masked by the enthusiasm of the campaign that financed construction and initial exhibits.
Estimates of how many people the museum could attract started as high as 1 million annually early in the project's life. When it opened, the Freedom Center predicted about 260,000 visitors the first year and got 283,000. But now, president Spencer Crew estimates attendance will level at fewer than 200,000 people a year
Plus, the Center ran several insulting TV ads that created negative responses. From the feedback at the Center's website, A man from Albany, NY writes:
Your TV commercial featuring and elderly Asian man and his grandson in their bodega is as insensitive and racist as the people you claim to target with your adds. You are only highlighting the fact that bigotry is as big a problem in the African American community as it is in the "outside world" you seem to be unable to forgive. Grow up and stop the racism in your own adds and stop broadcasting your immaturity into our homes.A person from Virginia:
I'm getting tired of all of these commercials, more less depicting all white people as being rascist in some sorts.I, myself, found these ads to be quite offensive and also more appropriate for 40 or more years ago. These ads used to be available for viewing at the Center website but it appears they got wise and removed them from the site.
Given the cost of visiting and the apparent on making present day whites feel guilty for something that happened in another time, many, like myself, have found better ways to spend our time and our money. Now that the Center can't support itself due to its own poor planning and alienation of potential customers it wants to have the government force us to pay for its operations. I say forget it.
Monday, March 27, 2006
I'm OK, He's F*$@d Up
When I visit the bookstore, the self help, pop psychology section, which is generally ample, is frequently being visited by females but rarely by males. In the Gender Issues section, books regarding "gender issues" concerning men are few. Some bookstores have sections devoted strictly to Women's Issues but I've never seen a Men's Issues section. Maybe women just have more issues than men.
I searched the web trying to find out the ratio of male to female book buyers. I couldn't find anything substantial. Judging from the sections in the bookstores that cater entirely or mostly to women it seems women probably make up the larger portion of the book buying market. What better way to lure women into buying a book than to tell them, in the title, that all their problems are his fault, mostly.
Unfortunately, many, many books seem to take this tact. Indeed, our society in general seems to believe any misbehaver, crime, etc. committed by a woman is the fault of a man somewhere. Here the Rational Radical goes to great lengths to blame the husband. If a man drowned his five children, how many would be blaming his wife? Few, if any. He'd be labeled a violent, sadistic monster.
I'm curious how long it will take to blame the victim in the Rev. Winkler murder by his wife. On Paula Zahn earlier, a female defense attorney has already discussed the "abuse" defense. Neighbors say there was no sign of discord. But there's probably a pit in the basement or something. More rationalizations for women killing men are found everyday.
Gov. Brereton Jones of Kentucky and Gov. Celeste of Ohio and other governors, during the last days of their administrations, have released female murderers from prison because their victims were allegedly abusive men. In some cases this was true, but these women were convicted by a jury of their peers. If the circumstances were so extenuating, the juries could have refused to convict.
Until men stop causing all these problems and making the world such a horrible place, they can expect to be blamed for it and to be otherwise attacked, killed, or whatever. Guys, if you'd just learn how to maintain a relationship and quite messing everything up, it would all be OK.
Heat Stroke in the Winter
I have a mild, morbid fascination it strange ways some people die. This is one that I never imagined.
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Parlez-vous anglais ?
Regarding Chirac -
PRESIDENT CHIRAC stormed out of the first session of a European Union summit dominated by a row over French nationalism because a fellow Frenchman insisted on speaking English.
President Chirac and three of his ministers walked out of the room when Ernest-Antoine Seillière, the leader of the European business lobby UNICE, punctured Gallic pride by insisting on speaking the language of Shakespeare rather than that of Molière.
When M Seillière, who is an English-educated steel baron, started a presentation to all 25 EU leaders, President Chirac interrupted to ask why he was speaking in English. M Seillière explained: “I’m going to speak in English because that is the language of business.”
Thursday, March 23, 2006
A 100% Risk-Taker
Like any addict, he continuously needed a strong fix. Finally, he nearly died on Mt. Everest, losing most of his hands, toes, and part of his face in the process.
The book is an easy read. Although the writing style is rather amateurish, you will see a clear picture into Dr. Weathers' psyche, what drove him to high risk activities and its impact on him and his family.
Most people are in politics for one reason, power. It is up to us to control their lust for power.
"But you must remember, my fellow-citizens, that eternal vigilance by the people is the price of liberty, and that you must pay the price if you wish to secure the blessing. It behooves you, therefore, to be watchful in your States as well as in the Federal Government." -- Andrew Jackson, Farewell Address, March 4, 1837
IRS Plans to Let Tax Preparers Sell Your Tax Info
Obviously, there are lots of privacy issues here. I wonder if it will hurt the tax preparation business. I prepare my taxes myself using TurboTax or the HRBlock software (which I don't recommend). I certainly would be more hesitant to use a tax preparer if they were able to sell my info.
Additionally, it appears that, while the government constantly warns us of the dangers of identity theft, it plans to provide another source for identity thieves. Of course, it's been a long time since the government really cared about our privacy.
Contact your Congressman or Congresswoman regarding this issue. I already have.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
A Personal Look at Risk Taking
Reading the post and accompanying link brought back memories. Well, one I can't really remember but my mother has reminded of it many times. It began with a backyard swing set.
Many children believe that if you swing hard enough you can perform a full revolution around the top bar of a swing. I was among that group. However, in my efforts I caused the entire swing, as it was not anchored to the ground, to tip over. The result was internal injuries, surgery and several days in the hospital at the age of 3 years. Kids have short memories.
At about age 6, I watched as one of the girls next door lost control of her bicycle lost control and rode head-on into a telephone pole, banging her head on the pole and damaging her bike. Somehow, I found the lure of this activity irresistible.
A few days later, I rode up the street, turned, came back at full speed and intentionally hit the pole. I flew up and hit the pole with my head. My bike sustained near fatal injuries. The front wheel was severely bent and the front forks bent back at six inches or so. I survived with no more than a prominent knot on my forehead.
Over the years I managed to regularly wreck my bike, once it was damaged beyond repair. While I have hairy legs, my knees were bald until my mid-thirties due to scar tissue. As an adult I bought a good 10 speed and continued to cycle. While I wrecked less often I still did occasionally and I didn't slow down much.
One of my favorite rides was to make the slow climb from Tremont in the Smoky Mountains over Crib Gap and down to Cades Cove and back. On the way back the ride down from Crib Gap was about 7 miles of continuous down hill. It started steep. I would be going so fast that I couldn't pedal fast enough to keep up. The air whistled through the spokes. Fortunately, I never crashed doing this. It probably would have been fatal.
As I got older I took up the more mundane sport of white water kayaking, the most fun you can have with your clothes on. Within a year I was running class IV rapids. I considered, and still do, a "managed" risk. You use your judgment to take only the risks you can manage to survive.
All this was interspersed with the other stuff guys do. Spelunking, jumping off bridges, cliffs, etc., playing sports with less than proper regard for ones body. As kids my friends and I commonly climbed on the bluffs overlooking the Tennessee River in our neighborhood. We thought that falling in the water wouldn't be that bad. Some how I am still here.
I hope my own children show more restraint. So far they seem to as did most other people I have known. Part of my rational for my activities was that there was almost always someone else who was willing to take the same risk or greater. I was a 90 percenter. I was generally willing to do whatever about 90% of the time. I thought the 100 percenters were crazy. But I think we all were.
Yet I believe that those who are willing to take risks often lead us to new and better futures and brighten our lives. The explorers, the innovators, etc. go where angels fear to tread. Sometimes they find something good there, sometimes they end up dead. Many days I thank the Lord that I didn't cross that fine line.
First Full Day of Spring, 2006
Snow in the morning. School is cancelled. I hope the Southerners at Hurricane_Radio are jealous.
It snowed even more in the late afternoon (or could it have been early evening?). I bet you Southerners, having to put up with all that sun and heat, are really jealous.
More Corey Maye
Very enlightening reading at The Agitator. There seems to be plenty of room for reasonable doubt in this case. Certainly the type of case in which the death sentence is unacceptable.
One aspect of this case that draws me in is the strong implication that law enforcement officers are not being honest. My first job after earning my B.A. was a state juvenile corrections officer. I regular sat in juvenile court in case a person was sentenced to correctional school and state custody. It appeared to me that, in juvenile court at least and in this particular jurisdiction, law enforcement officers and school officials routinely lied.
Monday, March 20, 2006
Walmart and Local Businesses Cont.
Strung along the highway in several places were poster size signs that a furniture store in Ripley, OH, 7 miles distant, is going out of business. This is a family owned business that carries excellent quality furniture. The Ripley store is the original location for the store. About 12 years ago, they opened a second store in Maysville which has the Walmart Super Center. The store in Maysville survives. The original store down the road closes.
A small billboard announced the closing of a Honda motorcycle dealership in Flemingsburg, KY, about 15 miles south of Maysville. The store is moving to Maysville, close to the Walmart.
Despite a stagnant population, the town with the Walmart continues to see an increase in businesses, locally owned and otherwise. The neighboring small towns appear to be seeing a decrease. At the least, certainly do not seem to be keeping pace.
Friday, March 17, 2006
Super Sentencing in Ohio
In Fairborn, Ohio a teenage boy was sentenced for shoplifting. At the time of the crime he was wearing a Superman costume.
A Fairborn Municipal Court judge found him guilty of one count of criminal theft. Binegar was credited for the 52 days he's already served in jail.Fifty-two days in the slammer seems pretty stiff for shoplifting but not necessarily unreasonable.
The rest of his 180-day sentence was suspended and he was fined 200 dollars. Older sister Michelle says her Superman brother has to be America's dumbest criminal.
Now it gets even weirder. Andrew Selva, in Columbus, Ohio, was sentenced to probation and a treatment house in Cincinnati, Ohio for repeatedly sexually molesting two boys over a three year period.
Andrew Selva, 46, was charged with 20 counts of rape, but as part of a plea deal, he was only convicted on two counts of sexual battery. Franklin County Judge John Connor labeled Selva a sexual predator and sentenced him to treatment, house arrest and probation -- a move that has infuriated prosecutors and legislators around the state.People are outraged and want the judge to step down or be removed.
Some protestors are calling for Judge John Conner to step down.Judge Connor doesn't seem to understand.
"My children are no longer able to do the little things that they were allowed to do walk the dog ride their bike around the block," said one protestor.
"It was very upsetting it's upsetting that he let the people down the children the victims, especially."
Now, Attorney General Jim Petro says Judge Conner should step down.
"A helpless child being subjected to that type of abuse is overwhelmingly outrageous," said Petro.
Connor placed him on probation saying: ‘‘He’s got a disease like I’ve got a disease. I don’t know that prison would have helped, except for revenge, and revenge is not in the sentencing guidelines.’’Ah, the old "revenge" ploy. A judge who doesn't understand the difference between revenge and punishment needs to resign. This column goes into further detail.
What the sentencing guidelines did call for was a 10-year stretch in a state prison. But Connor believes he knows better, so it is probation for a child rapist. By the way, the ‘‘disease’’ Connor referenced in his own case is apparently alcohol-related, the judge has at least two DUI convictions on his sheet.It appears the judge my have just a little too much "compassion" for a fellow alcoholic.
Mike Harden at the Columbus Dispatch makes some interesting observations regarding sentencing of sex offenders. Three recent cases, 9 years, 16 years, probation.
I must point out that the case in which the offender was sentenced to 16 years the victim was a girl. In the other two cases the victims were boys. I wonder if judges somehow feel less inclined to punish those who molest boys as opposed to those who molest girls. I wish I had the wherewithal to research the sentencing of sexual offenders based on the gender of the victim.
How crazy is it that a stupid kid who shoplifts while wearing a Superman costume serves more time than a man who sexually molested two boys over a three year period?
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Jean Schmidt Answers My Question
MARCH IS WOMEN'S HISTORY MONTH
Washington, DC - What do Rosa Parks, Susan B. Anthony, Sacagawea and Harriet Tubman have in common? They are all American women who have left an indelible mark on the fabric of our nation's history. From settling the American Frontier to the abolition of slavery to the women's suffrage movement, these women and countless others changed the course of history with their achievements.
The newsletter goes on to mention several women in our district that have significant accomplishments. I especially admire this woman and her husband.
Many of you have met or read about Carolyn Maupin. Carolyn is a tireless advocate for our men and women in uniform and their loved ones at home. She, along with Keith Maupin, founded the Yellow Ribbon Support Center in Clermont County. The Center's dedicated volunteers collect non-perishable and personal items and mail care packages to our military personnel serving abroad. Despite her heartache over the missing in action status of her own son, Army Specialist Matt Maupin, who was captured in Iraq in April of 2004, Carolyn is dedicated to raising the morale of our troops and their families. Carolyn will never give up hope, and her strength and courage are an inspiration to all of us.I have blogged before regarding the Maupins. I find it sad and telling that the national media doesn't give more attention to the Maupins while fawning at Cindy Sheehan's every dribble.
But, I'm on many legislators' email lists because I send them emails and ask questions. Naturally, I had a question for Jean Schmidt, "When is Men's History Month?"
Here is Jean's response:
I don't know. Good question!That's it, no more, no less. I found it refreshing. No political crap, no blah, blah, blah. Just a simple straight forward answer. Jean, you're very likely to get my vote next election for being able to give me a simple, honest answer to my question.
Grateful Dads Make Beautiful Music
What do two lawyers, a systems analyst, a college student, physics teacher, assistant principal and an information systems specialist have in common?
They're all Grateful Dads... and one grateful mom.
Seems a lot of us guys like being fathers and as well as at least one woman that likes being mother.
Saturday, March 11, 2006
Building A Better Mouse Trap Car
Before she had taken it to school, she told me another girl had brought a mouse trap car that would go about 4-5 feet while ours would go about 2-3 feet. At this point, I remembered my fallback resource, search the Internet. On my first try I found this site with plans for a simple but very good mouse trap car.
The plans include cutting out wooden wheels about 3" in diameter. (The site is Australian hence the measurements are all metric. I used 3" wooden wheels drilled with a 3/32 hole for the 1/8" axle.) The primary modification we made to the design was to use part of a large paper clip (trimmed) to wrap around the axle and then epoxy it in place for the loop in the string to hook on instead of a short piece of axle rod expoxied to the axle. I believe the use of the paper clip wrapped around the axle is stronger although it doesn't affect performance.
(I didn't let my daughter use any of the power tools.)
One aspect of all this is the competitive aspect of this and many other projects my kids do for school, Scouts, 4H, etc. The other little girl is a very nice, bright little girl. Both her parents teach in the school system. Her mother teaches math at the same school the girls attend. Her father is the shop teacher at the high school.
With the experience, knowledge and resources available to the girl's parents, she always has some of the best, most elaborate projects for school. I decided to make sure my daughter's mouse trap project was as good or better. Thanks to the site linked above I believe I succeeded. In tests at my house the car easily went 20 feet. It would have gone further but 20 feet is about the longest uninterrupted distance in my house.
I always wonder when teachers give assignments like this to children. It would truly be the unusual 9 year old that could successfully design and build a mouse trap car on their own. The spring of the mouse trap is probably powerful enough to break the finger of a 9 year old. Giving children a dangerous, nearly impossible, if done alone, assignment is not my idea of educational enhancement.
Friday, March 10, 2006
Woman Robs Bank
Mother Attempts to Burn Children
The girls, ages 8 and 12, told investigators their mother was upset because the older girl had a boyfriend. The mother allegedly interrogated the girl while applying lighted incense to the child's neck, chest, rectum and inside her mouth, according to Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason.The fire occurred over a year ago but it took authorities a year to put the pieces together and file charges. The woman was diagnosed with a mental condition. Who would have thought?
Investigators said the woman set the house on fire when she didn't get answers, and when the girls ran out, she forced them kicking and screaming back inside the burning house.
A neighbor pulled all three of them to safety
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Taliban Spokesman Attending Yale and the Joke of Homeland Security
Yale has suffered (Well, maybe not "suffered." The liberals at Yale probably relish the situation.) numerous attacks over admitting Hashemi over the thousands of American students that applied but were denied admission. Hashemi probably opposes military recruiters of campus, though. Yale fully deserves the criticism they receive on this, but....
How was this guy ever allowed into our country? It seems someone with close ties to the Taliban would clearly be denied entry to the U.S. Hashemi could easily provide information to terrorists that would enable them to do great harm. It seems, once again, that Homeland Security is not about security at all but something else. Something that I can't quite comprehend. Our border with Mexico is a virtual freeway of illegal immigration. The Taliban ambassador attends one of the premier universities in our country. We are keeping the danger 4 year olds at bay however.
Kentucky Trying to Reduce Prison Population
The number of prisoners held in 205 countries are presented. Over 9 million people are incarcerated, with almost 50% held in the U.S., Russia, and China. The U.S. has the highest prison population rate of 701 per 100,000 of its national population, well above Russia with a rate of 606 per 100,000. Rates of 150 per 100,000 or below are experienced by 60.5% of the countries reviewed.In some countries, such as Cuba, accurate numbers cannot be verified by outside entities.
Drug use and drug laws are a major factor in these high incarceration rates. Amelioration of this is where the bill is aimed.
Under the bill, at least 200 beds in corrections facilities would be set aside for people to receive intensive substance abuse treatment.Men make up the overwhelming majority of prisoners. Maybe this is why skyrocketing prison populations is not a bigger issue. The psychological toll prison experiences, such as rape, can take ensure that the problem is self-perpetuating.
That our great, free, open society has the highest incarceration rate in the world in certainly a black eye on our country. Maybe this is a start in the right direction.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Outlawing Sexually Oriented Three-Dimensional Devices In Tennessee
Tennessee Guerilla Women are outraged. Of course this may be the only source of sexual stimulation for some of them. (Just joking, guys. Keep smiling.) State Senator Charlotte Burks (DINO) and State Rep. Eric Swafford (R) are definitely on the Guerilla Women's blacklist, mine too. But, I can't vote in Tennessee, legally anyway.
In 1990, I left Tennessee after living there the first 38 years of my life. A growing proliferation in Tennessee of three-dimensional devices primarily used for stimulating the human genital organs played a major role in my decision to leave. Obviously, the problem continued to grow to the proportions that, at least some, state legislators feel the need to take preventive action. Bout time!
Now if they can just do something about that heat producing KY Jelly.
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Another Good Supreme Court Decision
The U.S. government can withhold funds from universities that protest the Pentagon's ban on gay men and lesbians by denying military recruiters access to campuses and students, the Supreme Court ruled Monday
From USAToday at Yahoo News.
There seems to be no end to the condescending arrogance of some liberals, especially in the world of academia. It's a wonder that brave men and women are actually willing to fight and die in order for these egocentrics to enjoy free speech, etc. as well as hold plush jobs as professors and administrators in our institutions of "higher" learning. I wonder how many of these schools happily took money from ex-soldiers paying their way through college with funds they earned as soldiers. Every single one I bet.
Abortion Rights and Wrongs
First, let me openly admit that on the subject of abortion I start from my conclusion and work back to "logically" build a position to support my conclusion. When I was 19 my girlfriend and I discovered she was pregnant. Being before the Roe vs. Wade decision, abortion was not much a option unless we drove to some distant place. In reality, abortion would not have been seriously considered. We got married, I dropped out of college and found full-time employment. We produced a beautiful baby girl who is now 34 years old and provided two grandchildren.
In about 1991, a lady wrote a letter to the Cincinnati Enquirer describing how she had had three abortions during her life with the last one leaving her unable to conceive. I responded with a letter describing my life events. Several people responded in the newspaper and 4 or 5 wrote me personally. Of the ones that supported abortion "rights", all assumed that I had never finished college due to this child's conception and birth although I did not mention one way or the other the outcome of my schooling.
I found it interesting that the abortion rights supporters perceived unwanted or unplanned pregnancy as such a disaster and tragedy that it would ruin your life. For me, this child saved my life. Before, I had no real direction, was muddling through college with a 2.0 GPA, etc. Taking my responsibility seriously, I continued my college education although I had to take time off to earn money to pay tuition, etc. My lowest GPA in any one quarter was 3.75 with 5 quarters of 4.O GPA. After a 3 year break to work, I returned to graduate school and graduated with an M.S. with a 3.97 GPA (easy major though).
I dread to think where my life would have ended up without this series of events. Sure, maybe I could have accumulated more wealth, or traveled more extensively, or whatever, but for me this was the best thing that ever happened to me along with the births of my other three children.
A few weeks past, bunches and bunches of people traveled lots and lots of miles to march in Washington, D.C. (I use "bunches" and "lots" so as not to quibble over actual figures.) My son's small parochial school let school out for a day so students and faculty could go to the march if they wished. For virtually my entire adult life, abortion has been a volatile subject of debate. Some call those who oppose abortion "fascists," "Nazis," and "totalitarian." Those who oppose abortion call abortion supporters "murderers."
While I oppose the act of abortion, I prefer to avoid the hyperbole used by both sides of the issue. I'm not sure exactly when life begins or what the definition of a "viable life" should be. I know a couple whose premature baby weighed 1 lb. 4 oz. at birth and survived to become a healthy child although needs to wear glasses due to such early birth.
The truth is that none of us really "know" when life begins. We can choose when we think it begins and act accordingly. We also can't fully predict the outcomes of unexpected births, or expected births. I use the approach of Pascal's wager, that it is a better bet to believe a fetus is a living human being. I suppose the nuns in my grade school did a good job on "indoctrinating" me.
What if I support abortion and bet wrong. My ever after may not be that great. Of course, if you're an atheist this argument holds no value. But, I don't know how atheist are able to put any value on human life any greater than a common stone.
A funny thing to me is that many of the supporters of abortion rights use the argument that a woman has the right to control of her body. Despite the one/two dichotomy, these same people often speak out vociferously against any activity in which a woman's looks or sexual appeal is "exploited." Why can't a woman earn money by having sex with others? A woman could have sex with 10 men a night and it would be perfectly legal as long as she didn't ask for any pay. Why not be reimbursed for her efforts? These are consenting adults mutually agreeing to an activity.
Another aspect of the abortion debate that disturbs me is the complete onsidedness regarding gender. Virtually, all the choices lay in the woman's hands. Not only do women hold all the power of decision but in some states, such as Ohio, laws allow women to anonymously drop off unwanted babies with no questions asked and no notice to the father. While preferable to abortion, this continues the heavy bias towards women in this realm.
A man's only choice is keeping it in his pants. Many feminists (and male feminists) support this position.
A solitary old man holding a large hand lettered cardboard sign in front of him. Men who are against abortion should keep it in their pants, it said. My husband and I chuckled as we passed him, and he grinned.I certainly support this position unless, as a man, you want to be joined at the hip with a woman you may not be able to stand.
That last message stayed with me on the long, slow drive back to New Jersey. He's right you know, I told my husband the next morning. That man with the placard we met as we were leaving. He gets it.
Some interesting thoughts on abortion, Democrats and euthanasia here.
Friday, March 03, 2006
Wearing Confederate Flags To School
The William Blount High School students, Derek Barr, Chris Nicole White and Roger Craig White, said they were threatened with suspension if they refused to cover or turn inside out shirts bearing the Confederate emblem.The school system has a "policy" regarding wearing symbols, etc. to school but appears they have been lax in enforcing it and also overly selective.
"Our policy is that any type of clothing which has graphics, words or pictures that are distracting to the learning process of the school ... are not supposed to be worn," schools spokeswoman Alisa Teffeteller said.I don't support wearing Confederate flags to school but "foreign national flags, Malcolm X symbols and political slogans" can be just as offensive and disruptive as a Confederate flag, especially in a southern high school. The school system, at the least, needs to be more consistent in its enforcement of its policies and make sure the policies are fairly applied.
The policy has been on the books for several years, but it had not been enforced until last April when the sheriff's office had to lock down the school amid rising tensions and threats to black students.
The lawsuit claims other students have worn clothing depicting "foreign national flags, Malcolm X symbols and political slogans" without repercussions.
A side note to this story is that I first saw it here,channelCincinnati.com. They originally identified William Blount High School as being in Knoxville which it isn't. William Blount High School is in the neighboring county. Apparently channelCincinnati.com corrected the error after I sent them an email pointing it out.
Not a major error but such errors often make me wonder how many other errors major news sources make because they don't check simple, easy to verify facts. I remember watching Nancy Grace cover the shooting of a deputy in Kingston, TN and the finding of the perpetrators vehicle in Erlanger, KY. I used to live near Kingston, TN and now work near Erlanger, KY. I realized immediately that Grace had the distances, the time required to travel from Kingston to Erlanger completely wrong, facts that could have been easily checked using Yahoo Maps. If the news agencies are too lazy or too dim to check these simple facts, what else are they getting wrong?
UPDATE: Here is the link where William Blount High School was incorrectly identified as being a "Knoxville high school."
What Have We Come To?
He's going to have to spend four days in juvenile detention for refusing to write a letter explaining himself after twisting the nipple of another boy while they were standing on line at a deli.I almost hate to say it but the other boy's parents may be raising the biggest wimp west of the Mississippi.
Thumler was convicted of offensive physical touching in July 2005. The victim's parents had complained to Gold Hill police.
The Gold Hill, Ore., boy has already served three days of community service emptying trash cans, mowing lawns and shoveling gravel, along with paying a $67 fine for the offense. But he refused to write the letter holding himself accountable, which would have spared him the time in juvee.Why is the AP using terms like "juvee"? Is this some sort of "let's be cool" game?
I applaud Thumler's fortitude. When I was in high school back in the "day" (late 1960's), we did this sort of thing all the time. Grab another guy's nipple, twist it and tell him to whistle. It was pretty funny to watch him try. After being twisted a few times myself, I learned to whistle very quickly. We called it "Titty Twister." It's just a stupid adolescent activity but not criminal.
I wonder if the victim still breast feeds.
Thursday, March 02, 2006
Liberal Trouble, Troubled Liberal
DrHelen also pointed out this post by Jane Galt on Is the Left Out of Ideas?. Certainly seems so. For the past few years it seems they can only criticize which is fine to a point but there is no new direction.
"You're going the wrong direction!"
"Which direction should I go?" "
"You're going the wrong direction!"
"Show me which direction I should go."
"You're going the wrong direction!"
"Do you have a map that shows me the right direction?"
"You're going the wrong direction!"
At some point the Democrats have to provide some leadership, not just point out what's wrong.
To top it off, Michelle Malkin posted about a liberal high school teacher in Colorado propagandize his students. Quite amazing. I never experienced any thing like it during all my school years. The teacher, Jay Bennish, was recorded by one of his students. Mr. Bennish goes on a rant of epic proportions. I can't understand how a man who hates this country so much can stand to hold a job where the source of his salary is government funds. He may not hold that job much longer though. He is currently under suspension.
This all leads to the point. When you are all out of good ideas and have no direction but still want political power, you have to resort to techniques other that do not include reason and logic. This is how the terrorists train their children to grow up to be suicide bombers.
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Lessons From Little Girls
The answer to all of the above turned out to be "Yes." They won one and lost three. But through the luck of a forfeit, they managed to finish second in the tournament. The tournament was for girls 10 and under but a team could have three "exemptions" which means they could have three eleven year olds on the team.
An 11 year old can be quite a bit larger than a 9 year old. My daughter's team is made up entirely of 9 and 10 year olds. Although my daughter is one of the youngest on the team, she is the tallest and plays center/forward. Slightly over 5 feet tall and about 90 pounds, she faced off with girls as much as 6 inches taller and perhaps 40 pounds heavier.
With an unexpected show of toughness and determination, my daughter refused to be intimidated. She registered more playing time than any other player on her team. She played every second of three games including one that went into overtime. She played three quarters of the other game. She was also among the leaders in scoring, rebounding and assists.
Needless to say, I am bursting with pride, primarily because of the mental toughness she displayed. It is often said that boys/men cannot adequately express their feelings because they taught not to cry. Although I've never told my children not to cry, my daughter refuses to cry on the basketball court or any where around it. A couple of times she took a hard lick but kept playing with little sign of anything being wrong. I'm not sure where or why she developed this philosophy but I do believe it is a good one for sports.
A couple of weeks ago, DrHelen had this post on nature vs. nurture and why do children turn out the way they do. I used to be strongly in the nurture camp but as I've grown older I've come to realize the power of nature. Without research I can trace back 5 generations before my daughter and find physical, athletic (and intelligent) people.
One source of odd pride in my family is that my great-grandfather had been a carnival muscle man. Both my parents played sports. My uncle played football at Iowa State. My youngest sister played basketball at Alabama Birmingham after a stellar high school career.
You could say there is a culture of sports and physical activity in my family. But I never pushed nor any more than mildy suggested my daughter might like playing basketball. About a year and a half ago, her best friend talked my daughter into playing in her team. I'll never forget what my daughter said when I picked her up after her first practice, "Daddy, I love basketball!" Her passion for the game continues.
I am fully aware that someday this may all change and that's OK. But it is fascinating to watch this sweet, lovable little girl, who also likes beauty pageants (Heather Renee French, Miss America 2000, let her try on her crown), run the basketball court, fight for rebounds, block shots and dive for loose balls. I am simply amazed at her heart, the effort she puts forth and usually she is smiling as she runs down the court. She truly enjoys the game.
My daughter wasn't the only one on her team to show this determination and heart, several did. Unfortunately, one, who is quite gifted on the court, fussed, pouted and cried at every perceived wrong which was quite disappointing. From what my daughter told me after the game, my daughter had lost quite a bit of respect for this girl because of this.
Despite the exception, it was inspirational to see these girls putting forth such a tremendous effort. I look forward to watching them for many years.
Yes, she has Daddy wrapped around her finger. And I have my own version of the perfect little girl. Oh, and did I mention she also is a Gifted and Talented student? :-)
Subscribe to Posts [Atom]