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Showing posts from July, 2008


Four straight from the Brewers, making for a five-game lead for a team that's now 21 games above .500!

Eamus Catuli (Which, being roughly translated from the Latin- very roughly- is "Go Cubs!")!

Cubs roll again

And the Cubs- this season's team of centennial destiny- continue to roll through their nearest NL Central competition.

A victory today would give them a sweep against the Brewers.

I think the rough spot has been successfully weathered.

ADDENDUM: Personally, I think it's the beer.

Cubs win again

Two out of two from the Brew Crew! Three games ahead, and counting...

Forty-one years ago today...

Forty one years ago today, one of the planes aboard the aircraft carrier USS Forrestal accidentally fired a missile into another plane on the carrier's deck. Within seconds, the deck was a blazing inferno.

One of the pilots leaped out of his own plane and ran toward the explosion in an attempt to rescue another pilot. He didn't get very far. A bomb exploded and injured his chest and legs.

Nevertheless, with his own carrier out of commission, the pilot volunteered as soon as he was physically able to fly from another carrier, the USS Oriskany. Months later, he was shot down over North Vietnam, and kept a prisoner for the duration of the war- five and a half years- in the infamous Hanoi Hilton, where he was repeatedly tortured. Offered an early release because his father was an important American admiral, he refused- and went home only when his fellow prisoners did.

That pilot was Lt. Commander John McCain, and he's the Republican candidate for president of the United States.


China drops most gold medalists from Olympic team

More than half of China's gold medalists have been purged from the Chinese Olympic team, often for political reasons.

Remind me again: why are we cooperating with the most murderous regime in human history in staging an event which has served as the occasion of a huge crackdown against dissidents who believe in freedom, and now for a second crackdown against athletes this totalitarian state does not consider politically reliable?

China needs to be publicly shamed at these Olympics, which ought to be boycotted by the democracies of the world.

County wants to remove life support without patients' or family's permission

Janet Rivera, 46, is a comatose woman in Fresno County, California who nobody claims ever expressed a desire to die were she to be in that condition.

Her family, moreover, is unanimous in wanting to keep her alive.

But Fresno County wants to withdraw life support anyway.

It's going to be fascinating to see how public opinion plays out on this one.

AP writers concede their defeat, U.S. victory in Iraq

They couldn't resist an inaccurate dig at President Bush's "Mission Accomplished" moment at the end of the combat phrase of an entirely different war- the one against Saddam Hussein. But two Associated Press writers, Robert Burns and Robert H. Reid, have nevertheless just conceded that the United States and the Coalition are on the point of winning the very war the media and the Democrats- Barak Obama among the most prominent of them- were pronouncing hopeless and unwinnable just a few months ago.

Victory in Iraq is something Americans should all be celebrating. Why is it that I detect a note of defeat in the grudging admission of the MSM that it's about to happen? And how can Barak Obama and his supporters in and out of the media have the chutzpah to refuse to admit that history has proven them wrong about the winnability of this war?

"He ventured forth to bring light to the world..."

Gerald Baker of The Times of London hath laboured and brought forth this wonderful, much- overdue knocking askew of the Obama halo.

No, Barack Obama is not both God and Man, and he was not born of a virgin. He will, if elected, probably not ride in the inaugural parade on an ass, and on a colt, the foal of an ass. Nor will he turn water into champagne at any of the inaugural balls, nor stroll across the Potomac without benefit of a bridge.

I recently saw a bumper sticker that said, "I already have a Savior. What I need is a President." Just so. The excesses of Obama worship among the MSM have long since ceased to be awkward, and have become positively embarrassing.

HT: Drudge

NBC's Obama love: it's getting pretty shameless

How, exactly, does a non-incumbent candidate for president making a fact-finding trip to Europe justify moving a network's entire news operation across the Atlantic and broadcasting the nightly news from the site of his speech?

Will NBC do the same if John McCain makes a trip to Europe before the election?

Wanna bet?

Ex-astronaut Mitchell: ET has been here- often!

Former astronaut Dr. Edgar Mitchell- co-holder, along with the late Alan B. Shepard, of the record for history's longest walk on the surface of the moon- says that the Roswell incident was only the tip of the iceberg- and that the government has been covering up visits by extraterrestrials for about sixty years.

Mitchell, 77, claims to have been briefed on some of what the govenment knows.

The technology of the aliens- who resemble the familiar large-eyed, large-headed, small-bodied stereotype, Mitchell says- is far more advanced than ours, and if their intentions had been hostile "we would be gone by now."

Mitchell was a part of the Apollo 14 mission- the third mission to land on the surface of the moon- in 1971.

HT: Drudge

So which past election is this, anyway?

Use your imagination, now.

We're in an election year. A discredited Republican presidency has turned public opinion very strongly against the GOP. Fortunately for the Republicans, though, their current candidate for the White House is considerably better thought of by the average voter than is the party as a whole. The Democrats, for their part, are running an attractive but inexperienced candidate who is very big on "the vision thing," somewhat naive on foreign policy matters- and very good indeed at high-flying but essentially empty rhetoric on the stump.

Gas prices are through the roof. Inflation and unemployment have both been showing signs of moving up- simultaneously, in such a manner that any effort to deal with one is apt to make the other worse. The nation's confidence has been shaken by an unpopular war. The country is crying out for change. Yet the sober fact is that the problems the nation faces are intractable ones that it will likely take more than four y…

It's turning surreal

OK now. Let me get this straight.

John McCain was right about the surge. He said it could materially help the situation in Iraq.

Barack Obama was wrong about the surge. He said that it could not work, and until fairly recently insisted that it had not worked.

So Obama is the one who gets the credit when it becomes obvious that it has worked well enough that even the Iraqis talk about a non-binding (note the qualifier) deadline for withdrawal?

And how is it that the MSM has missed the single biggest difference between McCain and Obama on the war- and one on which al Malaki sides with McCain, and not Obama: whether a binding deadline for withdrawing our troops from Iraq is even remotely responsible? True, Obama keeps saying that his schedule could be modified by "conditions on the ground." But every time he says that, the Far Left and the nutroots go absolutely ape, and Obama seems to back off on the suggestion that he might postpone the withdrawal of a certain number of troops if…

NYT runs Obama editorial, rejects rebuttal

The New York Times- the Democratic campaign pamphlet of record- printed an editorial by Barack Obama recently detailing the Democratic candidate's position on Iraq.

But it has rejected a rebuttal by Obama's Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain.

Here is the McCain piece that the NYT refused to print:

In January 2007, when General David Petraeus took command in Iraq, he called the situation “hard” but not “hopeless.” Today, 18 months later, violence has fallen by up to 80% to the lowest levels in four years, and Sunni and Shiite terrorists are reeling from a string of defeats. The situation now is full of hope, but considerable hard work remains to consolidate our fragile gains.

Progress has been due primarily to an increase in the number of troops and a change in their strategy. I was an early advocate of the surge at a time when it had few supporters in Washington. Senator Barack Obama was an equally vocal opponent. "I am not persuaded that 20,000 additional troops in Iraq i…

Woad is me

The other day I was discussing Men of Harlech- a song which never fails to send chills up and down my spine- with a Welsh member of an e-mail group I run. The song is best known in this country as the response of the besieged Welsh battalion at Rorke's Drift to the war chant of African warriors in the 1964 film Zulu:

I was rather amused to learn that for generations British school boys and boy scouts have had their own version- a song in praise of woad, the blue herb-based paint with which the ancient Britons covered their bodies in lieu of clothing before going to battle in the days when they were the ones carrying the spears.

The lyrics go like this:

What's the use of wearing braces?
Vests and pants and boots with laces?
Spats and hats you buy in places
Down on Brompton Road?

What's the use of shirts of cotton?
Studs that always get forgotten?
These affairs are simply rotten,
Better far is woad.

Woad's the stuff to show men.
Woad to scare your foemen.
Boil it to a brilliant hue

A song about an ancestor of mine

In 1798, Ireland attempted to throw of its British yoke under the leadership of Theobald Wolfe Tone, a Protestant.

Another Protestant- my ancestor, Henry Joy McCracken- stepped in at the last moment and took over as the leader of Tone's rebellion in Ulster. A charasmatic leader, McCracken is a romantic figure in Irish history. His men nearly captured the city of Antrim, only to be repulsed when the Redcoats were unexpectedly reinforced.

McCracken attempted to escape to America, but was betrayed and captured. The British offered him his life if he would name the man who was originally supposed to lead the Ulster rebellion, but he refused and went heroically to the gallows, comforted in his last moments by his sister, Mary Ann- a social reformer and philanthropist who made her own mark on Irish history. She also raised my ancestor, Henry Joy's illegitimate daughter Maria.

This coming Thursday, July 17, will be the 210th annivesary of McCracken's execution in the Corn Market …


You probably won't read about much it in American newspapers, but over the weekend allied forces in Iraq scored a decisive military victory that all but assures al Quaeda's defeat in Iraq- and at least one British paper isn't afraid to report it.

Al Quaeda has been driven out of Mosul, its last redoubt in the country's North.

Despite the continuing insistence of the Left that the war in Iraq is doing nothing to help in the worldwide war against terror, the fact is that Iraq is where that war is currently being fought- and the devastation we have dealt to the available supply of jihadis during the Surge has been a secret the Leftist media have kept from the American people very well indeed.

Twelve thousand al Quaeda fighters once occuped Mosul. The last 1,200 have now been either driven out or killed.

The situation in Iraq is looking good enough at the moment that even Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki may be about to pre-empt Barak Obama by proposing his own time-table …

Hopefully, the Cubs are back on track

What with our stumbling in the series with Baltimore and the Laundry returning the favor by sweeping us at the Cell, the Cubs went through one of the rocky spots all championship teams face from time to time during the course of a season.

Winning two out of three from the PRF*, on the other hand, is just what the doctor ordered.

*Pestilential Ruddy Fowl

Over a quarter of NYC adults have genital herpes

Listening to Todd Wilken on the reborn Issues, Etc. on Pirate Christian Radio the other day, I heard a statistic I had a hard time believing: that a quarter of the adult population of New York City has genital herpes.

Turns out it's true- except the actual percentage is 26%.

Pastor Wilken was commenting on the influence Sex and the City has had on people there in promoting the unrealstic expectation that a sexually promiscuous single life is likely to end in a happily-ever-after marriage when Mr. or Ms. Right comes along. Doesn't happen. And you get these diseases, you see, as well as a partner whose faithfulness you can't count on, and difficulty remaining faithful yourself.

Rates of chlamydia, gonorrhea, and infectious syphilis are also higher in New York City than nationally. But let's not make this a pick-on-New York story. Our national stats aren't that hot, either: 19% of all adult Americans have genital herpes.

Talk about celibacy to most unmarried Americans, an…

Obama on Iraq: the doubletalk begins

I've always maintained that Barack Obama is too intelligent and- yes- responsible a man to simply pull American troops out of Iraq in eighteen months if he is elected president. It would be a move so breathtakingly disastrous in both humanitarian and in foreign policy terms that the only people who have absolutely no idea what they're talking about (or worse, don't care) could possibly see this as a rational course of action- especially now that, thanks to the surge, Iraq seems well on its way to achieving stability and being able to stand on its own if only we are patient.

And now, Obama is broadly hinting that he might revise his eighteen-month timetable-if withdrawing our troops within that time would either endanger our troops or destabilize Iraq.

Which is like saying "if the sun comes up tomorrow morning."

Obama, in his naivette, might once have actually intended to pull our troops out of Iraq in eighteen months, and thought that he could pull it off. But to bo…

Obama's foreign policy is beginning to look silly already

Meanwhile, scant weeks after North Korea began demolishing its nuclear facilities in response to the Bush administration's policy of combining firmness and principle with diplomacy, Iran is reportedly willing to halt its own enrichment of uranium if international sanctions are removed.

Let's see... that's two potential nuclear rogue states Bush's administration has managed to bring to heel now, at the same time it's managed to turn the tide in Iraq through the surge.

Now, remind me. Barack Obama's recommended approach of appeasement and surrender was supposed to accomplish exactly what?

Perhaps it's a contagious form of mental illness

Charles Krauthammer once described a phenomenon called "Bush Derangement Syndrome," an ailment of the Left characterized by "the acute onset of paranoia in otherwise normal people in reaction to the policies, the presidency — nay — the very existence of George W. Bush."

Here's an indication that in certain of the nuttier regions of the Right, McCain Derangement Syndrome is beginning to appear.

HT: Real Clear Politics