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Showing posts from January, 2011

A world without chocolate?

Political unrest in Africa, one expert says, has put us in a situation in which the world may no longer have a sustainable supply of cocoa after 2014.

Which means that chocolate may be a thing of the past.  And can life survive here on Earth without chocolate?

President Obama sticks his foot in his mouth. Again. And the media ignore it. Again.

President Obama continues to make gaffes that would have had the media- and the rest of the Left- rolling in the aisles and howling in derision if President Bush had made them.

His latest: confusing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Mr. Obama- the most diplomatically inept president in memory- only weeks ago insulted the special relationship between the United States and Great Britain by saying that France (France!) is "our closest ally."

Nor is the President's remark an affront only to Britain; Australia has, if anything, stuck by our sides even closer than the English have.


He doesn't do these things on purpose. Foreign leaders don't necessary feel that they're at odds with Mr. Obama, the way they sometimes did with Mr. Bush.

They just don't take Barack Obama seriously.

HT: Drudge

The worst to end up first

In an article guaranteed to give sports fans all over North America (and a few in the UK) apoplexy, here's an interesting list of the 50 least worthy champions in sports history.

Since most of my least favorite teams- the Packers, Red Wings, White Sox, Mets, and Cardinals- are represented here, I personally rather enjoyed it.

Especially the richly deserved inclusion of the hugely overrated 1969 Mets.

There's Rahm on the ballot for Emanuel after all

The Illinois Supreme Court has unanimously overturned a lower court's ruling that former Obama chief-of-staff Rahm Emanuel is not a Chicago resident within the meaning of Illinois election law, and cannot run for mayor.

Emanuel has a wide lead over a field including two Hispanic candidates- former Daley chief-of-staff Gery Chico and City Clerk Miguel De Valle- and former U.S. Senator Carol Mosley Braun, an African-American. There are two minor candidates in the race.

Were I back home, I think I'd vote for either Chico or De Valle.  Certainly not Rahm, and certainly not for the lady who messed up so badly in the Senate.

But then, being on the losing side in Chicago elections is a major part of my life story.

The election is February 22.

HT: Drudge

All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that it have a credible running game

I expected yesterday's defeat at the hands of the Packers, but losing to the Cheeseheads is never acceptable-especially two out of three times in a season. All the Mold and Gold they needed, it seemed, was a credible running game.

The season is a failure. Nothing else counts.

Perhaps Caleb Hanie will push Cutler for the starting job next year. We'll see. But in the meantime.... can't Lovie PLEASE get visibly upset about SOMETHING???!!!

In the meantime... GO STEELERS!

Isles snatch Nabokov from the Wings. Whew!

I got a fright this week when I read that Evgeni Nabokov had left Russia to play for the Red Wings.

The dude is a pretty good goalie, and- as fond as I am of Antti Niemi- I personally would not have let Nabokov walk in order to sign him, as the San Jose Sharks did. I was stunned that nobody claimed him on waivers when they did. But it's a big relief that the Islanders have claimed him, thus keeping him away from Daytwah.

Nabokov would have been the best goalie the Wings have had since Dominic Hasek. The thought of their having him between the pipes with their present roster is frightening.

Of course, Nabokov is no Corey Crawford. Hawks 3, Wings 1 after two... and don't be surprised if, despite the hits the Hawks took due to the salary cap and their slow start, with Corey in goal they make a spirited run at repeating as Stanley Cup champs.

ADDENDUM: Final: Champs 4, Wings 1. Two goals for Kopecky.

ADDENDUM II: Apparently Nabokov is refusing to report to the Isles. Stay tuned fo…

Ok. Let's get this straight.

This is a sore point for people with my particular hobby, so please carefully note the following.

Astronomy is the science that studies the stars, the planets, comets, asteroids, and all the other stuff out there in space.

Astrology is a pseudo-science upon which the superstition called the horoscope is based.

Parke Kunkle is a Minnesota scientist, not an astrological charlatan. He recently caused a furor by pointing out what real scientists- astronomers- have known for centuries: first,  that the horoscope's supposed correspondence of the signs of the zodiac (the constellations through which the Sun's "path-" the ecliptic, which from another perspective is simply the plane of the solar system) seems to travel when seen from Earth) with the calendar is in fact an entire month off, and has been for centuriesand, secondly, that the sun's path actually travels through thirteen constellations, and not only twelve (Ophiuchus, the Serpent Bearer, is also a zodiacal con…

"Tone down the rhetoric," the Left pleads- while brandishing a gun

When I wrote this entry on the movie The Death of a President, which I happened to see last week, I wasn't particularly thinking of the hypocritical Leftist attempts to somehow blame the Right for the lack of political civility which supposedly resulted in the recent massacre in Arizona. Imagine my surprise to discover that Leftist columnist David Corn- the man who, the day after conservative Robert Novak merely mentioned that Corn's friend Valerie Plame was " a CIA operative," actually became the first to publicly reveal that she was an undercover agent in the process of accusing Novak of having made that revelation- has had the unmitigated gall to suggest that the American Right is somehow more "extreme" than the American Left. Strident Leftist columnist Paul Krugman has written in much the same vein.

Corn- whose hysterical personal attacks on President Bush leave him little room to chide anyone for lack of civility- attempts to demonstrate his dubious p…

The Bears just might do it after all

And suddenly the Bears find themselves in the NFC Championship- and against the Green Slime, at that! I continue to see us as underdogs to the Packers. But I am convinced that we can beat them. We did so once, and played well enough to do so the second time.

Moreover, I'm sure that we can beat either the Jets (in fact, we've already beaten them) or the Steelers.

For the first time, I actually see a strong possibility of Da Bearss not only gong to the Super Bowl, but winning it. But in a real sense, the Green Bay game is the real Super Bowl. Winning that would make losing in Dallas a whole lot easier to take.

Of course, winning both would be even better.


A distasteful reality

When I was in seminary, I briefly worked in the mail room. A mailing arrived from a pro-life group featuring lurid and bloody pictures of aborted fetuses and parts thereof.

"Well," a pro-choice classmate said, "so much for reasoned discussion!"

I didn't have time to point out that until we confront the fact that what those pictures portrayed is what abortion is, reasoned discussion is on the topic isn't possible.

Apparently former President George W. Bush was moved to his pro-life position by his mother, Barbara, showing him the fetus of a miscarried sibiling.

Disgusting? Perhaps. But grounds for coming to grips in a way that many Americans refuse to with just what that nice, clean, sanitary word "abortion" actually means.

It's official: statues of Hull and Mikita will be erected at the UC

It seems that whoever makes such decisions has finally gotten around to decreeing that statues of Blackhawk greats Bobby Hull and Stan Mikita will join that of Michael Jordan at the United Center. About time, in my opinion.

It's easy for the current generation of Chicago sports fans to forget that NBA basketball is a relative newcomer to Chicago. There was, somewhere in the late Cretaceous Period, a team called the Chicago Stags (named, I presume, more or less in memory of Amos Alonzo Stagg, the legendary coach of the University of Chicago's great early football teams) in the NBA. It failed in 1950, the year of my birth. I remember another  failed franchise, called (shudder!) the Chicago Packers (pardon the language!) starting up in my youth. Its owners quickly realized their lapse and had the good taste to change the team's name to the Chicago Zephyrs (Windy City. Get it?). Alas, it didn't help much. The team only lasted two years, going out of business in 1963. It wa…

A sick movie indeed

A couple of years ago, some parishioners gave me a portable DVD player for Christmas. It's been a much-appreciated source of entertainment ever since then, especially given the opportunity afforded by the Des Moines Public Library to rent movies and TV programs I've missed through the years for a dollar a week.

Yesterday I picked up a few to tide me through the weekend. Two in particular are worthy of comment. The first is Death of a President, a British "mockumentary" on the (obviously fictional) assassination of George W. Bush in Chicago on October 19, 2007.

The film was broadcast on the BBC in 2006. At the time, I commented on how disgusted I was by the premise- a reaction shared by people as diverse as Hillary Clinton and Kevin Kostner. If I had a dime for every sick Democrat and Leftist I've heard wishing precisely for Mr. Bush's death over the past eleven years, I'd be financially much better off than I am today. To actually make a film about such …

Back in business

Apparently my Google account was hacked the other day. Google shut down my email and blog for twenty-four hours (the dreaded "suspicious activity"), but as you can see I'm back- though with three spam emails from myself.

Anyway, it's good to be back in communication with the cyber-world.

Half a loaf

The Ursine Warriors looked better yesterday than I expected. Especially given the psychological factors involved, losing 10-3 at Lambeau isn't all that bad.

And since we beat the Packers at Soldier Field, the season wasn't a complete loss even if- as I continue to fear- we make a relatively early exit from the playoffs.

Here's hoping... though the odds are against us

The Bears play Green Bay at Lambeau in the last game of the regular season this afternoon.

The Bears have little or nothing to gain. The Packers have everything to lose. A Green Bay defeat means the end of their season. A Bear victory wins them the off-chance of having an essentially meaningless first seed in the NFC (if Atlanta loses, and the moon is in the Seventh House, and Jupiter aligns with Mars).

The Good Guys will have a hard time being motivated. The Bad Guys will have no trouble at all. And if the truth be told, the Packers are a considerably better football team than we are.

For realistic Bear fans like myself- who realize that we're going nowhere in the playoffs, no matter what seed we get- beating Green Bay twice in the same season is close enough to a Super Bowl to get us through the summer But I have a feeling we're going to have a hard time taking down the Mold 'n' Gold this afternoon.

Here's hoping, anyway. Bear down!

ADDENDUM: There seems to be co…