February 01, 2007

Heading Out To The Pasture...

Gary Llama.JPGAnd so it ends. Two years to the day (and to the minute) from when it began.

For those who didn't get the memo about the conclusion of the Ex-Donkey Blog, I refer you here.

In the first post I ever wrote, I said, "I plan on keeping it simple. Only two topics: Politics and everything else that I like." The politics angle was interesting enough. I had a lot to say. And I think I've pretty much said most of what I care to on that particular topic. Two years ago, in the wake of the 2004 Presidential election, politics in this country was in an ugly state. I had hoped we had hit the high-water mark of the ugliness. But to my dismay it's gotten even more distasteful and toxic. And it couldn't be happening at a worse time in our nation's history. I've gotten weary of it. At this point I'd much rather focus on the "everything else I like" sort of stuff - while still having some occasional fun at the expense of the moonbat brigade.

So the Ex-Donkey is off to join the Llamas, where I can have that fun on a more flexible schedule. Because of other personal commitments I probably won't be posting as often as I did here, but there are plenty of other excellent "tasty bits" to mix it up with over there. Anyone still interested in reading what I have to contribute can follow me to the "pasture" (a/k/a Orgle Manor). Even if you're not, I still encourage you to visit.

As I have already mentioned, the comment function will be shut down soon (if it hasn't been already) as a firewall against comment spam. A warm thanks to all who frequented the place and helped keep it humming. I plan on keeping the site up for as long as the administrator at MuNu will let me.

One other housekeeping note: the current poll about the lefty blogs will stay active for the foreseeable future so feel free to vote as often as it will allow.

Adieu :-)

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Pathetic: Nutmeg Nincompoop Not Even On The Radar Screen

Well, I knew my other Senator's Presidential aspirations were a long shot. But I wouldn't have guessed that his bid would so underwhelm that his standing in the polls would be considered statistically insignificant.

Zogby tried to gauge it, with laughable results:

When pollster John Zogby asked a group of 339 likely Democratic voters earlier this month whom they wanted for president in 2008, one or two mentioned Connecticut's senior senator.

One or 2 percent mentioned Christopher Dodd?

No. One or two people, Zogby said.

"I'm competing with the margin of error in most polls," Chris Dodd grinned as he described his underdog status recently to a New Hampshire audience.

He should be so lucky. The margin of error was 5.4 percentage points.

In the Zogby America poll, Dodd registered as a hyphen - a placeholder indicating he polled at less than 1 percent.

Even 2004 candidate Joe Lieberman, who is not running this year, got 2 percent of likely voters saying they favored him.

That's so rich.

Somewhere, Lieberman (who was roundly dissed by Dodd last fall) is smiling.

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Dodd has earned a new nickname in my book - Senator Hyphen.

Heh.

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January 31, 2007

Oh Please! Oh Please! Oh Pleeeeeze!!!

Let it be so!!

Gore to announce Presidential bid at the Academy Awards? (Assuming, of course, he gets to make an acceptance speech if his ninety-six minute Powerpoint presentation wins for "Best Documentary").

That would be just perfect.

h/t: The Hillary Spot

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Here's Irony For You

The month that I formally decide to retire this blog...

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...it gets the most hits/page views in its history.

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January 30, 2007

"Barbarella" Returning To The Big Screen

No, not Jane Fonda. Although, notwithstanding her seditious activity during Vietnam, it's hard for any man not to admit that - back in the day - she was pretty smokin' hot:

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But word is that the man who brought us the original "Barbarella" back in 1968, is geared up to re-introduce the character into what I'm sure will be a multi-picture series.

Now out promoting his new film "Hannibal Rising", legendary film producer Dino De Laurentis confirmed to NBC30 that he's creating a new franchise with the character.

De Laurentis quickly stated up front that the new film is "not a remake of 'Barbarella"' but "a completely new 'Barbarella.'"

At present no-one has been cast in the project, and the script is being worked on right now and will incorporate "love, sex, [and] adventure".

DeLaurentis is also the producer or executive producer behind such iconic films as the 1976 version of "King Kong", "Flash Gordon", "Conan The Barbarian" and the last three Hannibal Lector rip-offs movies.

Since the casting choice for the lead has not been made, I'd like to humbly offer my suggestion:

Elisha5.jpg
Kim Bauer!!!! (aka Elisha Cuthbert)

Photo filched from Blogs4Bauer.com

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Happy Birthday To "Big Time"

Who turns 66 today!

Cheney.jpg

And many more, to the gob-smacking consternation of moonbats everywhere.

And to celebrate, head over to the Ace archives to read the thread "Cool Facts About Dick Cheney" (it's a long one)!

Have a great one, ya big lug!

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January 29, 2007

Air America Can't Suck Enough

The ill-conceived Liberal talk radio project continues to bleed out.

Now Santa Cruz, CA joins the list of ex-Air America stations.

The left-leaning radio network, aimed at taking on Rush Limbaugh and other conservative talk shows, debuted on Central Coast airwaves in July 2005, but local advertisers never bought in, [KOMY 1340 AM] station owner Michael Zwerling said.

"We didn't sell a single ad in a year and a half," Zwerling said Thursday. "I thought liberal radio would work as a viable advertising business in the most liberal town in America. I was wrong"

Santa Cruz isn't the only place Air America has problems. The network is struggling nationwide and filed for bankruptcy four months ago.

No wait, it gets better.
Limbaugh is a major moneymaker for the station, Zwerling said, and his show pulls the highest ratings of any program on KSCO or KOMY.

However, in Santa Cruz, where the vast majority of registered voters are Democrats and voted for Sen. John Kerry in the 2004 presidential election, Zwerling wanted to give listeners a program that better plays to their political beliefs.

So you'd think such a "Blue" market would be ideal for advertisers looking to appeal to the audience that would eat up Air America's kind of format, right?

Um. Actually, no.

"It's an angry, nasty, pissing and moaning format where the only thing they say is 'Bush stinks' or 'Bush is bad'," [Zwerling] said. "No commercial advertiser wants to be associated with that"
So where does that leave the station? Well, apparently some old and tired routines are more attractive than others.
Taking Air America's place is oldies music — artists such as Roy Orbison, Patsy Cline, Chuck Berry and The Platters — with local, live disc jockeys.
Heh.

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Why So Glum, Chum?

Some perspective from Geraghty the Indispensible on "the Big Three" GOP Presidential candidates. Not really as bloody awful as some depressed Conservatives might think.

And for the record, Captain Ed asks "What's the rush?" I second that. I can't see jumping on any particular bandwagon this early in the process.

UPDATE:
Last minute thought. The fear and loathing of a Shrillary Presidency could be the single most significant factor in driving Republican turnout in 2008 for a candidate that the base isn't really that jacked-up about.

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January 28, 2007

Hillary: "It's Time"

Madame Clinton Rodham thinks the U.S. is ready for woman as President:

"It's about time, if not past time, we had a woman president," she told an enthusiastic and overflow crowd of 1,500 Iowa Democrats jammed into a high school gymnasium in Des Moines.
I heartily agree.

Just not that particular woman. Ever.

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January 26, 2007

It's French Friday

MelissaTheuriau_2.jpg

Melissa says "Bonjour".

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January 25, 2007

Patriotic Terrorists

Because "dissent is patriotic".

An absolute must-read from Greg Gutfeld.

Are you a patriotic terrorist?

If you are intensely critical of the US, while tolerating homicidal enemies who condemn everything you previously claimed you are for - human rights, voting rights, gay rights, women's rights, porn - then you're a patriotic terrorist.

If you talk about tolerance constantly - and hilariously tolerate genocide and suicide bombers because those actions undermine your more intimate opposition, the American right - then you're a patriotic terrorist.

Did I just link The Huffington Post? Egads!

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"Weekend At Bernie's": Havana Style

What is the status of dying dictator Fidel Castro these days? It's hard to get a fix with all these conflicting reports. But you just know that if Hugo Chavez is publicly upbeat then in reality things are probably not looking good.

Chavez said he was pleased to hear from Cuban Vice President Carlos Lage that the 80-year-old Cuban leader was making a recovery. Lage, after meeting with Chavez, said: "We will have Fidel and we will have Raul for a lot more time."

Their hopeful remarks came less than a week after Chavez said Castro was "battling for his life."

It reminds me of the mid-1980's when three Soviet leaders in a row took a turn for the worse after being diagnosed with "a bad cold".

It also reminds me of this famous sketch:

How long will it be before Chavez tries to assure us the Castro is merely pining for the fjords?

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January 24, 2007

"Grey's Anatomy" Star Sent To Re-Education Camp "Treatment Facility"

For using an "anti-gay remark" in referring to one of his co-stars.

According to an insider, Isaiah [Washington], who issued an apology for his statements on Jan. 18, agreed to undergo a psychological assessment after talks with ABC executives.

The married 43-year-old father of three was spotted entering the facility at 9 a.m. today (Jan. 24).

Hoo-kay.

Can't he just pay a visit to the "Museum of Tolerance"?

Probably NSFW

"Dude, tolerance kicks ASS!"

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Aw, Dagnabit!

Lurch is out of the contest.

Guess he just wasn't master of his domain.

The 2008 race just got less fun. :-(

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Does Nancy Pelosi Have Tourette's?

Blinking 25-30 times per minute is a symptom, as Wizbang points out.

Might be medication time.

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January 23, 2007

2006 Oscar Nominations (Or, "Movies I Didn't See")

OK, here are the nominations for this year's Academy Awards.

Here is a list of movies released in 2006, ranked by Total Domestic Gross (TDG).

Let's take the second list first. From that list, I can name the ones that I actually saw (with their TDG ranks):

#1. Pirates of the Carribean: Dead Man's Chest
#2. Cars
#3. X-Men: Last Stand
#6. Superman Sucks Returns
#7. Ice-Age: The Meltdown
#10. Over The Hedge
#18. The Break-Up
#19. Scary Movie 4
#26. Saw III
#29. Charlotte's Web
#39. Rocky Balboa
#44. Flushed Away
#47. Underworld:Evolution (on DVD)
#49. Poseidon
#51. Little Miss Sunshine
#84. Accepted (on DVD)
#92. United 93
#102. Clerks 2
#133. Hollywoodland

That's it. Obviously as a father of three you can tell that a) I don't go out much and b) I see a lot of movies with my kids. Actually, now that I look at the list I'm surprised I saw as many movies as that.

Now go back to the first list. What you find is a whole lot of movies I haven't seen. Granted the ones on my list aren't all necessarily Oscar-worthy, but there are a handful.

I really liked "Little Miss Sunshine" and I suppose I'll root for that long-shot for Best Picture.

But the motivation for me to sit through a three-plus hour long awards show where a bunch of people, who make a living pretending to be other people, honor each other as if they've solved world hunger or found a cure for AIDS is...?

Dirty Harry at Libertas puts it this way:

I haven’t seen any of these, but for the most part, neither has anyone else. I have actors I’ll root for because of my affection for them, but can’t base that on these particular performances...

...The Oscars bore me to death. I am thinking about live-blogging them, but that would mean actually watching, so I’m not so sure.

That sounds about right.

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A New Kind Of Campaign - In Your Face

When I was a teenager, Presidential campaigns were the stuff of C-SPAN watchers and other political geeks. For 2008, the campaign will be a regular topic on the Internet every day with even the most mundane news stories for the next two years. It will likely drive even casual followers of politics buggy.

Look at how many candidates have already thrown the fishing nets out into the waters to try and suck up as much in campaign funds as they can.

Can people deal with this? I wonder. How much of the early effort will translate into actual voting support? Probably very little. Who's really paying attention? And will voters become numb to it by the time Election Day rolls around?

At this stage of the game, it's all about the Benjamins. The next twelve months will determine who is still in, and who it history.

How long will it be until we start seeing campaigns officially begin within the previous election cycle?

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January 22, 2007

Everything I've Learned About Life, I Learned From Watching "24"

Lesson One:

DO NOT JERK JACK BAUER'S CHAIN! EVER!

...even if you're his brother. Just don't. If you do, you've brought it on yourself.

Also, memo to Joel Surnow and company - don't kill Chloe. I have no idea if Chloe is on the Season Six "hit list". But I do know you like to show that in this dangerous world, people we love die. Okay, we get that.

Let me repeat this. Don't kill Chloe. Seriously. You can almost kill her. You can put her in mortal danger. That's cool. But please do not kill Chloe. The show is better with Chloe.

Are we clear here? Let me quote Jackie Gleason from "Smokey And The Bandit": "You can think about it. But don't do it."

That is all.

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Happy Birthday Diane Lane!

Oh, c'mon. How could I not post a pic on her own birthday?

Diane Chair II.jpg

Born January 22nd, 1965, Diane is forty-two years young today.

UPDATE:
Damn me, ain't she sweet?

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Why Meetings Suck

If you've ever spent more than an hour in a meeting, you know they're not fun. But after experiencing a particular painful one today, I decided to put my theory as to why they're so painful into graphic form.

Lower down in the post is what I call "Gary's Hierarchy of Meeting Participants". As you can see in "Figure A" below there are three basic types of meeting participants.

The first is the "Chief Stakeholder". This is the person responsible for the meeting in the first place. He or she called the meeting, assembled the contributors, booked the conference room, made copies of handouts, created a Powerpoint presentation and basically has no other responsibility than to make your life miserable. They have a specific motivation for setting the meeting. This is called an "Agenda". And it has very little to do with the primary reason that most everyone else is in attendance, which is that they have to be. The Chief Stakeholder is easily identifiable as the one with the laptop.

The second level of participants contains the "Contributors". These are the individuals called by the Chief Stakeholder to talk about a particular topic that is on the Agenda. They generally only speak to their topic and rarely participate in any other part of the meeting. The Contributors are also fairly easily indentifiable as the ones with folders or stacks of paper containing their material.

The third level is comprised of "Attendees". These are the folks who for one reason or another are determined by the Chief Stakeholder as individuals being affected by the Agenda who need to be made familiar with all of said subject matter. In reality, most of the Attendees have only a marginal interest in the Agenda and will quickly forget everything with which they have been made familiar at the meeting. Attendees can be identified as the ones who have bewildered looks on their faces and are usually holding pens and writing pads of various sizes. These pads are intended to convey a level of interest in the Agenda that does not really exist. The Chief Stakeholder usually understands this.

Now, as to why meetings suck.

While all meetings suck at some level for all of the participants, there is a certain phenomena that happens during meetings in which the total amount of suckitude has an inverse relationship to the level of total interest each category of participant has in the meeting itself as you go down the hierarchy.

Let me explain.

The Chief Stakeholder has an extemely high level of interest in the meeting. As a result, time passes at a faster rate than normal for him or her as they try to cram in too much of the Agenda into the meeting before the allotted time expires. They also have the most to gain from the meeting because it will - at best - result as a line item to hightlight on their internal resume or - at worst - will serve as a CYA exercise in which they can transfer the responsibility for the overall familiarity of the Agenda items to the Attendees (e.g. "I already went through all of that at the meeting").

The Contributors have a high level of interest but only for their own particular item on the Agenda. Very often each of these individuals can excuse themselves from the rest of the meeting however many will stay and completely tune out the rest of the Agenda, confident that once they are done with their portion they can recede into the background. For the amount of time that these individuals "contribute" time will pass rather quickly. The rest of the meeting will drag, however they know that if they have to they can escape the situation with a bathroom break from which they will never return. Contributers stand to gain some rise in esteem among their peers as going forward they may be seen as somewhat of an "expert" regarding the subject matter on which they spoke.

hierarchy.bmp
Figure "A"

Which brings us to the Attendees. For these people, the laws of time and space will alter in a way that seems to defy the minute hands on their watches. They can often be noticed struggling to keep their eyes open, constantly shifting in their seats and getting up to help themselves to water, coffee or other refreshments in a vain attempt to keep their legs from falling asleep. The less interest the individual Attendee has in the Agenda, the slower that time will pass. Attendees stand to gain very little from the meeting other than having their mornings, afternoons or even an entire day shot all to hell. They have the additional disadvantage of looking stupid later on when some item from the Agenda is brought up and they have no memory of that information because they weren't able to focus their attention during the meeting.

So there you have it. Now you know why being invited as an Attendee to a meeting means nothing short of the fact that you're screwed.

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