Thursday, May 31, 2007

A Rod: The New Say "Hey" Kid

I was watching the Yankee game last night and really got a kick out of this. Alex Rodriguez was running to third when the Toronto shortstop settled under a high pop up ready to catch the ball for for out number 3. A Rod yelled "hey" as he ran behind him, distracting the Blue Jay who backed off the ball, letting it drop and starting a rally for my Yanks. The Blue Jays were livid saying A Rod's move was "Bush" league.

Here's my take. First, how appropriate that "Bush League" is the term for shoddy, unprofessional behaviour. Second, I admit it was kind of a cheap stunt. Finally, Since I am a Yankee fan, I loved it! I can completely understand why Yankee haters are in an uproar about this. You don't expect that kind of behavior in the MLB and especially with the Yankees. But I admit that I am biased, unfair and inconsistent by saying that I thought it was a great move and a stroke of near genius by Rodriguez. Nice job A Rod.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Fred Thomson Starts Presidential Drive

Wow. This is cool

The bike messengers in New York are nuts! They fly by all the time missing you by mere centimeters. After a while you stop noticing them. It's sort of like a dragonfly whizzing by. But check out this video of some NYC bike messengers doing a cross city race.

She was covert

A formerly classified document released on Tuesday showed, without doubt, that Valery Plame WAS A COVERT AGENT in the CIA when her cover was blown by the Bush Administration. You'll remember that her name was part of a smear campaign by VP Cheney, Karl Rove, Richard Armitage and any number of other loyal Republicans in the Bush administration. When Scooter Libby was convicted of lying under oath to a Grand Jury to protect others we heard whining (sniff, sniff)about how unfair it was and that it didn't reeeeaaaly matter anyway 'cause (sniff) she wasn't a covert agent so there was "no underlying crime" to the overall leak case. Even though it was already known by everyone except those fooled by the devious right wing media, it is now proven beyond any doubt.

Of course, I would like to think that all those who have been hanging on to that excuse would repent and admit they were wrong. But I predict the Red talking heads will come up with something brand new and within a week, all of Red America will be repeating it and they will have completely forgotten the "covert" talking points they scurrilously parroted previously.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Ron Paul - Real Time

Ron Paul has long been one of my favorite Republicans. For years he warned his party of the dangers of the neocons. He was against the Iraq war. During the FOX news debate a couple weeks ago he was the target of harsh criticism by the network's host and the other candidates. Yet, in the FOX poll running on the ticker that night, viewers strongly favored Paul. I think he's a bit too eccentric to win the election but it sure is refreshing to see an independent thinker in the Grand Old Party.

Here's his appearance on this week's Real Time with Bill Mahr.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Pitiful Pinstripes

Went to the Yankee game today and we lost again. Still, it was a beautiful afternoon at Yankee Stadium so I really can't complain too much. We are really in danger of falling out of the playoff picture all together - already!! If things don't turn around it could get ugly. I heard Joe Torre boo'ed today for the first time ever. Told ya... During the God Bless America I looked around to see if they were stopping people from leaving their seats. I didn't see anything and 95% of people stayed still. But, some guy yelled from the back to "Take off your hat" and some guy who was in front of me who had forgot to get hatless yanked it off instantly. We play another series against Boston next weekend and at 12 games back right now, we can't afford to lose a single one of those games.

Bushie out of the bubble

Former Bush Chief of Staff Andrew Card was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Massachusetts this weekend. Graduating students, parents and guest were very adament about their displeasure about that. President Bush and his folks have tended to only attend public events with a pre-screen audience to make sure they are loyal to The Party. Supporters of the Party tend to stick with their own news sources and avoid debate with any Americans who don't parrot the party line. Well, Watch what happens when a Red visits the real world.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Young Las Vegas Partiers Drink and Scoot

Anyone who has visited Las Vegas knows just how expansive the strip is. My first night there I decided to walk from one end to the other stopping in every casino. I am a great walker and set on my way starting at the Stratosphere. Well, as you can guess I didn't get very far. It is really a bit misleading when you look down the strip. You see a neat row of casinos but what you can 't really tell is just how big they are. It takes about 20 minutes to just walk by or through a casino! It is impossible to hit all of them on the same evening. In fact, when I would go out I would usually focus on four places - two next to each other and two across the street. Even that was a lot of walking.

Well it seems that many young people now are not even bothering to try to hoof it around. This story tells how 20 somethings are the new booming market in Las Vegas for motorized scooter rentals. Those little carts, once used only by little old ladies from Pasadena, are now all the rage for party goers unwilling to walk from casino to casino.

Simon Lezama, 27-year-old tourist from Odessa, Texas, drives his electric mobility scooter at the Riviera hotel-casino in Las Vegas, Friday, May 18, 2007. "It was all the walking," Lezama said on his red Merits Pioneer 3. Lezama, a trim and fit-looking restaurant manager from Odessa, Texas, rented it on day three of his five-day vacation, "and now I can drink and drive, be responsible and save my feet."

Thursday, May 24, 2007

MONICA BLOWS IT! Goodling Tells how GOP Partisanship Infests DOJ / Influenced Election Results

I watched with much interest the testimony Wednesday of former Justice Department official Monica Goodling. She insisted on immunity then calmly spilled the beans. She was ever so nonchalant when admitting to asking Justice Department job applicants their party affiliation - making sure they were loyal to The Party. She tried to muddle the issue by saying that SOME people applied for both political and non political jobs anyway - which is a bit like defending adultery by saying that you also slept with your wife ( Let’s call it the Ted Haggard Defense) . Goodling also claimed to be out of the loop on a lot of stuff and shifted as much of the blame she could over to retiring assistant AG Paul McNaulty. Still, this young and inexperienced political operative embedded in the Justice Department ended up revealing much of what has been deliberately hidden away.

Goodling is a graduate of Regent University, Rev. Pat Robertson’s right wing college with dubious academic credentials.(Interestingly, no less then 150 graduates of this University have gone on to work for the Federal Government since 2001). Of course when a Democrat pointed some of that out the Republicans on the committee claimed that Christianity itself was being assaulted and that people of faith were suffering unbearably from the unflattering comments. Anyway, they explained, the school recently won a debate competition! It's frightening to learn how many Regent University graduates have been given control of the levers of power. It's also illustrative to witness just how fast some Republicans will claim religious persecution at the slightest opportunity.

Finally, she talked about “caging” - a Republican tactic used in 2000 and 2004 to disenfranchise black voters. (Or, to put it another way, steal elections) Again, Goodling admitted to it as if it should all come as no surprise. Maybe it doesn't the BBC reported it 3 years ago. Yet, the silence is deafening from the American public as our once great democracy is destroyed, from the inside, right before their eyes.

When you get 10 minutes watch this 2004 Newsnight report from the BBC which shows how “caging” was used by Republicans in 2000 and 2004 to keep Democratic voters from casting a ballot.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

GOP 'Party Girl' broke the law

A government investigation has found a top Bush administration official broke the law by encouraging subordinates to use their power to support Republican candidates for office, sources tell ABC News.

Falwell Student Planned to Bomb Demonstrators at his Funeral

The Falwell legacy of hate and intolerance seems to be taught quite well at Liberty University.

A Liberty University student who told a family member he had made bombs and planned to attend the funeral of the Rev. Jerry Falwell was apparently upset about an anti-gay fringe group that protested at the funeral, authorities said. Mark David Uhl, of Amissville, was arrested Monday night after a family member contacted authorities, who found homemade bombs in the trunk of Uhl's car, Major Steve Hutcherson said. The five bombs were describes as ''sort of like napalm'' and about the size of soda cans. ''We do not believe the Falwells were ever in any danger,'' authotities said.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Smithsonian Administrator Claims Pressure from Reds To Deny Science

The fact that this story is not surprising shows just how far America has fallen under the spell of the right wing. At last, I know what citizens of the old Soviet Union felt like. Mr Bush, Tear Down This Wall (of ignorance).
The Smithsonian Institution toned down an exhibit on climate change in the Arctic for fear of angering Congress and the Bush administration, says a former administrator at the museum. Among other things, the script, or official text, of last year's exhibit was rewritten to minimize and inject more uncertainty into the relationship between global warming and humans, said Robert Sullivan, who was associate director in charge of exhibitions at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History.
Also, officials omitted scientists' interpretation of some research and let visitors draw their own conclusions from the data, he said. In addition, graphs were altered ''to show that global warming could go either way,'' Sullivan said. ''It just became tooth-pulling to get solid science out without toning it down,'' said Sullivan, who resigned last fall after 16 years at the museum. He said he left after higher-ups tried to reassign him.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Carter's Comments Bother Bush

"I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history. The overt reversal of America's basic values as expressed by previous administrations, including those of George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon and others, has been the most disturbing to me."

"I think it's sad that President Carter's reckless personal criticism is out there, I think it's unfortunate. And I think he is proving to be increasingly irrelevant with these kinds of comments." White House Spokesperson

Cartoon Commentary

click to enlarge

I have to admit that my first thought when I heard that Jerry Falwell had died was that "Satan has Returned Home". He is one of a very, very small number of people that I suspect are true evil. If there is a heaven and Hell then Jerry Falwell must surely be in Hell. He used the word of God to advance un-Christian-like politics. He manipulated good people to follow his evil ways. He spawn an whole generation of hatred, lies and division in this country. All in the name of the Lord.
[One of the many political tales Falwell spun from the pulpit involve the notorious smear videos titles the Clinton Chronicles. It is a perfect example of this mans life. Find a lie, spread it to your flock, watch them help your political candidates win. ] Burn Jerry Burn!

Friday, May 18, 2007

Happy Friday!

Music from Loverboy - "Everybody's working for the weekend" with scenes from the TV show The Office.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Happy Mother's Day!

I'll be in Florida for a few days to spend some time with my parents. Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Freedom Curtailed In Order To Celebrate Freedom

Sometimes I feel myself evolving into Andy Rooney - a curmudgeon complaining about everything. Well, here I go again. What I want to whine about today is the policy of the New York Yankees during the National Anthem and God Bless America. I see in today’s NY Times that the Yankees now have a strict policy of fan being forbidden to move at all during the playing of these two songs.

OK let me start at the beginning. The playing of the National Anthem at the beginning of sporting events is a long held American tradition. I have no problem with it at all. I stand respectfully with my hands to my side and hat off. (I have always been annoyed at people who put their hands on their hearts during the national anthem. As best I can recall, Ronald Reagan started that to prove he was extra double proud to be an American. It doesn’t make any sense and reminds me of people, who during moments of silence, close their eyes extra tight for everyone to see and says “Amen” extra loud to demonstrate their piety. It’s silly.)

So I think that the National Anthem is fine at the beginning of the game. But ever since 9-11 we now all rise to sing “God Bless America” in the 7th inning. An easier song to follow (especially after 7 innings of beer sales) the crowd usually sings along. Personally I think that we should sing God Bless America at the beginning and leave the rest of the time to sing “Take me out to the ball game” and “Charge!!”. (Every team probably has their own unique sing-a-longs. My favorite at Yankee Stadium is the song for Jorge Posada. It is difficult to write how it goes but basically it is a long chant of “hor-hay, hor hay, hor hayyyyy, jor hayyyy, hor hayyyyy”. Believe me it sounds good when tens of thousands of people are cheering/singing it).

But the Yankee policy of now forbidding people from making their way to the restroom or wherever during these songs is just too much. I have noticed that 90% of the people naturally stop where they are while the National Anthem plays then afterwards make their way to wherever they are going. During God Bless America there is a bit more activity as people rush between innings so they get back in time for the end of the game. Now we will not be permitted to move freely as we sing about our freedom. We will be forced to stand where we are until, under the watchful eye of security, the song stops and we are permitted to go take a pee or buy an All American hot dog. To me - it seems downright Un-American to MAKE people stand for a song. In fact, it sounds down right fascist to me.

So, I have to agree with the ACLU

“Yankee management is free to promote its brand of musical patriotism,” Arthur Eisenberg, the legal director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said in a written statement. “But we need to be wary of enforced cultural conformity and the use of a ballgame to impose political correctness on a captive audience.”
Shows of patriotism, like that of religious faith, seems to have taken a strange turn during the past generation. Once a private action, recently we have been forced to publicly demonstrate our beliefs. We have had politicians build up reverence for symbols like the flag and these songs while they simultaneous remove the very freedoms the symbols once stood for! They have tried to force Christian rituals on the American people while they pursue policies which can be argued are not very Christian at all. Frankly, I think the efforts to elevate the importance of symbolism are part of a conscious plan to distract the American people from the substance of policies these politicians pursue.I personally believe that people should stand for the songs, stay still if possible and show respect for our country. But to FORCE ticket paying customers to do so is way beyond the pale. It seems pretty basic knowledge that the 1 sure fire way to make someone resent doing something (even something they would voluntarily want to do) is to mandate it. I have no problem standing still for these songs. I do have a problem being told that I must do that.

As a related issue (not sure if I wrote about it last year) is the use of military aircraft to open a baseball game after the National Anthem. During Opening Day 2006, the fighter jets buzzed the stadium so close that the noise shook the seats and the danger to fan safety seemed real. One false move, one mechanical failure and a speeding jet plows into the seats. That alone is a bad idea - never mind the symbolism of cheering an aircraft designed only to kill. During the 1st playoff game last year they also used fighter planes. I was running late for the game and was in line to get in the Stadium when the jets unexpectedly flew directly overhead. I am not exaggerating when I say that we unsuspecting fans and ticket agents all either crouched down in terror or hit the ground flat! C’mon is it really necessary to do that?
This commentary is crossposted at You can read the comments from those readers at the bottom of the page here . I also have this up at a Yankee blog and am getting a lot of interesting comments here.
UPDATE: Apparently the law says you have to put your hand on your heart. I did not know that. I do now.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Tammy Faye Bakker is very ill and I'm sorry to hear that. I remember her rise to notoriety on one of the original televangelists shows - the PTL Club. Her husband Jim would preach and ask for donations and she would cry. Oh boy would she. Her mascara ran down her face like a clown and people loved it. But then Jim landed in jail and she became a national joke for very long time.

I'm sure I made many jokes about Tammy Faye over the years until I saw her on the reality show ‘The Surreal World’. In it I saw a sweet, warm and caring person. I was surprised. Everyone in the house came to love and admire her.

I'm glad that Tammy Faye had a chance to give some depth to her story. She seemed like a genuine person with a good heart.

Here is a REAL commercial shown on the PTL club.

How To Convince Republicans To End The War

I had a bit of inspiration today after watching the national call in program Washington Journal on CSPAN. The topic was Iraq of course and typically Republican callers were arguing that we have to keep sending in more troops and keep spending billions of dollars a month in Iraq in an effort to win there militarily. Additionally, it was reported that Vice President Dick Cheney has made a surprise visit to Iraq today to check on progress. Here are the ideas I have come up with.

1. A Republican War Tax: Since only die hard right wingers still support the President and this war, they and only they should pay for it from this point on. The Republican War tax would be levied monthly on all people who have been registered Republican since 2000 to pay for the cost of their war. (This would also include medical and funeral arrangements). Let’s see if these loud mouth chicken hawks are willing to (gasp!) pay more taxes to fund their folly. I have a feeling that the mere threat of taking money out of their hands would send them running to the peace table.

2. Give Dick Cheney a gun - keep him in Iraq: Clearly the man likes to shoot caged animals and geriatric lawyers. Well play time is over Dick. Give him a gun and make him fight there until “the job is done”. He dodged out of service in Vietnam but here’s his chance to back up his tough talk with tough action. Sit him in a HumVee, give him a beer, hand him a gun and tell him to get comfortable. I'm guessing that he would declare victory in short order and personally lead the retreat out of Iraq.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


What began as a mid-latitude or extratropical low pressure system has now
transitioned to what is known as a Sub Tropical Storm

Monday, May 7, 2007

Sunday's Rocket Launch

Sunday was a great day at “The Stadium”. First of all the weather was perfect. Brilliant sunshine and mild temperatures. We won. A much needed victory and a great performance by a very young pitcher. There was a almost fight. Not that I like that kind of thing but it is an occasional occurrence at ballgames. It was my first “bench clearing” incident that I have seen in person. Very exciting. And of course there was the surprise announcement during the seventh inning stretch.

It was interesting how they made the announcement. They were playing “Take me out to the ball game” as usual when the announcer stopped the song and asked for attention for a special announcement. At first, it was a little worrisome. Something was happening, and the NYPD helicopter uncharacteristically circling the stadium all made me a little concerned that it was a security situation. But, then the announcer directed us to the big screen where Roger Clemens appeared LIVE from the press box to announce that he was returning to the Yankees.

The crowd did show their appreciation and I cheered along. However, there was NOT a RACOUS cheer at the announcement. I was surprised that most Yankee fans are like me -glad to have a new pitcher but not all a-flutter about it being Roger specifically. Careful readers of this blog have noticed that I am not that big of a Roger Clemens fan. I think he has an oversized ego, oversized contract, is a dirty player and by all means a huge prima Dona. I’m glad that he will pitch some games for us. But if Clemens expects me and the stadium to bow down in appreciation at his choice to wear the pinstripes he will surely be disappointed. And if he underperforms I predict he will hear boos louder that that ever hurled upon A Rod.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Barack in A Hard Place: Red America

It's tempting to think that all of America is ready for a black President, but we have to remember that the "conservative" ideology still plays the major role in American political dialog. I visit conservative blogs and unfortunately when the topic of Barack Obama comes up racist comments almost always follow. As with so many other issues regarding common decency, Red Americans still have a long way to go when it comes to race.

There have been two stories in the news lately that brings this point home. First of all the US Secret Service has been forced to give Barack Obama security already! This is, by far, the earliest any candidate has need protection. The Secret Service will not give any specific details except to say that "unspecified threats" are being made necessitating the unprecedented security precautions.

Next, CBS News found themselves in the position of having to pull the comments section of their news posts about Obama. Seems every time he is discussed, hateful and racists comments follow. So none are permitted anymore.

American history is full examples of power brokers fanning the fans of racism. The KKK was huge in the South in the early 20th century as they bolstered membership by many of the same rhetorical techniques used by contemporary "conservatives". The KKK evolved into segregationist Democrats and when the Democrats evolved past this, these people were welcomed into the "new" Republican party. From Ronald Reagan's race baiting to today's talk show hosts heated rhetoric, these racist feelings are still used by politicians to gain support by those who harbor racist feelings. It's no wonder then that Barack Obama finds himself threatened verbally and physically by the remnants of Americas dark past that now resides in too much (but not all) of Red America.

Friday, May 4, 2007


Did you ever get an e mail with that title? I'm sure you have. The magazine PCWorld has compiled a list of the 25 most common junk e mails of all time. You can read the whole list with a thorough debunking here. I'll give you the top 5.

1. The Accidental Tourist (2001)
Quite possibly the most famous hoax picture ever, this gruesome idea of a joke traveled around the Web and made a grand tour of e-mail inboxes everywhere soon after the tragedy of September 11. It depicts a tourist standing on the observation deck of one of the World Trade Center towers, unknowingly posing for a picture as an American Airlines plane approaches in the background.

2. Sick Kid Needs Your Help (1989)
This gem had its roots in reality. It all began in 1989, when nine-year-old cancer patient Craig Shergold thought of a way to achieve his dream of getting into the Guinness Book of World Records. Craig asked people to send greeting cards, and boy, did they. By 1991, 33 million greeting cards had been sent, far surpassing the prior record. Ironically, however, the Guinness World Records site doesn't contain any mention of Craig Sherwood or a "most greeting cards received" record, presumably because the fine folks at the site don't want to encourage anyone to try to break his mark.

3. Bill Gates' Money Giveaway (1997)
No, it's true. I thought it was a scam, but it happened to a buddy of mine. It seems that Microsoft is testing some new program for tracing e-mail, and the company needs volunteers to help try the thing out. He forwarded me an e-mail that he received from Microsoft--and get this, from Bill Gates himself! Two weeks later, as a reward for participating, my pal received a check for thousands of dollars! Sure he did. Another version of this hoax claims that AOL's tracking service is offering a cash reward. Tell you what--when you get your check, send me 10 percent as a finder's fee, okay?

4. Five-Cent E-Mail Tax (1999)
"Dear Internet Subscriber," the e-mail starts. "The Government of the United States is quietly pushing through legislation that will affect your use of the Internet." It goes on to reveal that "Bill 602P" will authorize the U.S. Postal Service to assess a charge of five cents for every e-mail sent. Not a bad way to cut down on the number of dopey e-mail chain letters and lame jokes people let loose on the world. But credulous curse averters and connoisseurs of boffo laffs can relax: This e-mail alert, which popped up in 1999 and comes back for a visit every year or so, just isn't true.

5. Nigerian 419 E-Mail Scam (2000)
"DEAR SIR," the e-mail starts. "FIRSTLY I MUST FIRST SOLICIT YOUR CONFIDENCE IN THIS TRANSACTION; LET ME START BY INTRODUCING MYSELF PROPERLY..." I'm sure you've received one of these--a confidential, urgent e-mail message promising you a reward of mucho dinero for helping this person convey money abroad. All you need do in return is entrust your name and bank account number to the government bureaucrat (or his uncle, aunt, or cousin, the ostensible "credit officer with the union bank of Nigeria plc (uba) Benin branch") who needs your help.

Republican Debate Analysis

The debate last night was pretty interesting. I thought that most of the candidates did pretty well for themselves. Of course, they talked of Ronald Reagan in weirdly supernatural terms and style over substance predictably held the day for the Republicans. But besides that foolishness, most of the candidates articulated their positions well and came across as more thoughtful and intelligent than the current resident of the white house.

For some reason Chris Matthews chose to “attack” only 1 candidate - my favorite Mike Huckabee. Matthews read a quote from one of his interviews and tried to get Huckabee to admit he was attacking Mitt Romney. Huckabee seemed confused by Matthews accusations and tried to assure him that it was a general comment not a direct attack. That provided him a good deal of time that, despite being put on the defensive, I think he handled quite well.

Mitt Romney surprised me the most. He is a great speaker and can explain his thoughts in a clear and simple way without being elemental. If Republicans are looking for another Reagan than Romney, seemed to me to fit the bill most closely. Guliani did better than I expected and came across as a feasible commander in chief. McCain was very energetic which sometimes made him look a bit spastic. At one point he growled that he would follow Osama bin Laden to the gates of Hell - then burst out grinning at his own hyperbole. It was a strange moment.

The rest of the candidates seemed to fade into the woodwork with Jim Gilmore being especially bland. I also noticed, looking a the full slate of GOP candidates, that they were all old white men in dark suits. Interesting that in 2007, THAT is more noticeable than the rainbow of race and gender we see on the Democratic side.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Tonight - The Republicans

Tonight is the 1st Republican debate and of course I will be watching. They are holding it at the Ronald Reagan Library demonstrating the hero worshipping tendencies that I have always thought was a symptom of their propensity to “follow” and oversimplify everything. To them Reagan was not a mortal man - he was God like. Reagan was everything good. Anything positive that has happened in the past 30 years is because of Reagan. Every Republican candidate wants to be the next Reagan and all have talked about him on the stump the way a school girl goes on about the jock. It’s kind of gay and will be the most sickening part of the debate tonight. Look for everyone (the press included) to gush over what a great man Ronald Reagan was. No mention of his race baiting to get elected or the widespread corruption inside his administration after he was elected is likely to be made.

I have not talked much about the Republican field so here it goes.

Mike Huckabee - I have been meaning to write about him for some time now. He is the only Republican in the race that I would consider voting for. He is from (of all places) Hope, Arkansas. He’s the former Governor of that state, a man of the cloth and very conservative. The reason I like him is that he really understands that it is wrong to force his belief system on other people or the country as a whole. He actually believes that Christians should help the poor and take care of the less fortunate. He is smart and open minded. I tell any conservative I talk to that they would be wise to support Huckabee because (with the possible exception of Fred Thompson) he is the only Republican who could garner enough crossover votes to win the general election.

Rudy Guliani - He cleaned up New York City but the nation as a whole is nothing like the Big Apple. While he and the GOP have really worked on building up his 9-11 heroics, I always thought he did a good - not great job. His tenure as mayor was filled with corruption and abuse of power and I always like to remind folks that Guliani wanted to cancel the Mayoral elections after 9-11 and keep himself in charge for an unprecedented (and unelected) third term. His personal life also is a bit troublesome with affairs, divorces and dealings with people like Bernard Kerik. To me Rudy seems like an authoritarian leader prone to abusing power. I think we’ve had enough of that type of behavior in the White House for a while.

Mitt Romney - His fundraising abilities may assure him a VP slot but he has a long way to go to get the Presidential nomination. He has flip flopped so dramatically it is hard to know what he would do as President. I fear he would over-pander to the GOP base and without any internal political compass he could really get us in trouble.

John McCain - Well, well. Back in 2000 I was a big McCain fan. He talked straight about how George W. Bush was a dirty campaigner and would make a poor President. Fast forward 7 years and he has embraced not only George W. Bush, but the very political operatives that smeared him back in 2000. When McCain was a POW he signed and read an anti-American confession. I can, of course, forgive that. But doing more or less the same thing with George W. Bush makes me wonder if this straight talker is also a fast folder - and would end up being a very weak President.

Ron Paul I like a lot of what this guys says. He is fiercely independent and has been (fruitlessly) warning his own party of the dangers of the neo-cons and the radicals that have taken over the GOP. I hope he calls out the other candidates that have supported this President and his neo-con pals.

Tom Tancredo and Duncan Hunter - these are single issue candidate who are likely to blame everything from the Iraq war to their hemorrhoids on Bill Clinton and the democrats. For your everyday Republican voter this simple message will excite. However, it won’t be enough to become serious candidates.

Sam Brownback, Tommy Thompson and Jim Gilmore - Brownback is a traditional conservative who seemed to have a lot going for him. For some reason though, he hasn’t caught on with Republican voters. Thompson is a decent guy but really very uninspiring - Gilmore even less so.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Online Security: Do "they" know your passwords?

Isn’t it a hassle to keep track of all the passwords you use on line? E mail, newspapers, airlines, entertainment sites…they all require registration with their own unique password. Not only is it annoying to try to think of something original but it isn’t always easy keeping track of the password you entered. I try to use different ones for every website but I have registered for at least 100 sites, so this ritual stretches my imagination as much as my memory. On top of that, experts recommend that you change all your passwords every 90 days. Imagine that! I’ve come across this very interesting and helpful study about the security of the passwords people use online. Many, they say, use overly simple passwords when they should use uncommon alphanumeric combinations. They explain how to come up with good passwords and even made a list of the ten most popular (and thus LEAST secure) passwords.

The Top Ten passwords to avoid

1. password
2. 123456
3. qwerty
4. 123abc
5. letmein
6. monkey
7. myspace1
8. password1
9. blink182
10. (your first name)

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

RIP Tom Poston

Tom Poston seemed to be be every sitcom in the 80's but his career went all the way back to the 50's. Here's a clip with Bob Newhart as Poston plays George - who is having a dream.

(What) Mission (was) Accomplished?

It was four years ago today that President George W. Bush announced “Mission Accomplished” on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln At the time I knew it was premature to declare the war over and I was sickened at the crass commercialization of the war for partisan purposes that day. I figured that his little promenade would clinch his reelection because it was so beautifully produced. Ironically, today this image stand as a symbol of the disconnect between the Bush administration and reality. Unfortunately that realization did not hit enough Americans by November of 2004 and we are in the midst of the second term of this sad state of denial. How idiotic Bush now looks in his jumpsuit strutting around. Gosh, how some people were impressed! Are they still? Well, if you check out this short video you’ll see how the White House has left out the Mission Accomplished banner from their very own web site. I checked just Monday night and sure enough, it’s not there. So, no. No one is proud of this extravegant photo op any more.