May 17, 2005

Sen. Orrin Hatch: "The Votes Are There"...

NRO's Beltway Buzz just spoke with Hatch, the Judiciary Committe Chair. When asked if he thinks the GOP has the votes to end the judicial filibusters:
Hatch said, “Frist can get the votes if he wants it. The votes are there.”

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Chrenkoff's Open Letter To Lucas...

Polipundit links to Arthur Chrenkoff's latest. It's an "open letter" to Star Wars creator George Lucas. And it is a must read.

Note: I've already posted my thoughts here, here & here. And I've even been called a "right-wing crazy" over it. Not to mention that I've been Google-bombed with searches on "Bush" and "Lucas". This topic must be touching a nerve or two.

On an "I told you so" sidenote, a Technorati search on "bush" and "lucas" returns scores of Liberal blogs commenting on the "cautionary tale" of "Sith", and quite a few Conservative blogs taking notice.

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Why I Love The NY Post...

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Europeans Agree: France Sucks...

The UK Telegraph article's headline is: Europe Unites In Hatred of French. I love this. Apparently after more than 1,500 years of warfare and in-fighting, the peoples of Europe have found one thing they can agree on: the French are a bunch of jerks.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Britons described them as "chauvinists, stubborn, nannied and humourless". However, the French may be more shocked by the views of other nations.

For the Germans, the French are "pretentious, offhand and frivolous". The Dutch describe them as "agitated, talkative and shallow." The Spanish see them as "cold, distant, vain and impolite" and the Portuguese as "preaching". In Italy they comes across as "snobs, arrogant, flesh-loving, righteous and self-obsessed" and the Greeks find them "not very with it, egocentric bons vivants".

Interestingly, the Swedes consider them "disobedient, immoral, disorganised, neo-colonialist and dirty".

But the knockout punch to French pride came in the way the poll was conducted. People were not asked what they hated in the French, just what they thought of them.

"Interviewees were simply asked an open question - what five adjectives sum up the French," said Olivier Clodong, one of the study's two authors and a professor of social and political communication at the Ecole Superieur de Commerce, in Paris. "The answers were overwhelmingly negative."

Gee, doesn't France care about what other nations think of them? Aren't they concerned about their place in global society? Why are they so unapologetically ethnocentric?

Why the hell are Americans so damn concerned about what the world thinks about them when these pricks could give a rat's ass? They've perfected arrogance to an art form.


Hat Tip: Memeorandum

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May 16, 2005

Frist Makes The Case...

From USAToday's Op-Ed page:

It is time to vote. As Senate majority leader, I have tried for more than two years to find common ground with my Democrat colleagues. I have offered to guarantee as many as 100 hours of debate for every judicial nominee, far more than has ever been necessary for any nominee in the past. I have offered to guarantee that no nominee ever becomes unjustly stalled in the Judiciary Committee, as many Democrats believe happened in the late 1990s.

In other words, I have sought to address Democrats' grievances while holding true to the core principle of an up-or-down vote. So far, my Democrat colleagues have rejected all efforts at compromise, and continue to insist on a new, 60-vote standard.

Such a position is unacceptable. President Bill Clinton's nominees required only 51 votes to be confirmed. Why should George W. Bush be treated differently? Until this president took office, Democrats and Republicans alike were firmly opposed to all filibusters, and said so repeatedly. We had a tradition based on mutual respect and restraint.

The ball is on the tee, Senator, now...swing away!

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White House takes a swipe at Newsweek...


Press Secretary Scott McClellan:

"It's puzzling that while Newsweek now acknowledges that they got the facts wrong, they refused to retract the story," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said. "I think there's a certain journalistic standard that should be met and in this instance it was not."...

,.."The report has had serious consequences," he said. "People have lost their lives. The image of the United States abroad has been damaged."

Good for him.

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Judicial Filibusters and Political Warfare...

Today's OpinionJournal.com has a chronicle of how we got to this point, and what's at stake for Republicans.
[Democrats] are going to such bitter lengths, we suspect, precisely because they view the courts as their last hold on federal power. As liberals lost their majority status over the past 30 years, they have turned increasingly to the courts to implement their political program. If Democrats succeed in blocking these nominees, they will feel vindicated in their view that judicial activism pays. They will also conclude that Senate obstructionism works, and so will dig in for more of it.
As of now it looks like Frist will put forth the names of Priscilla Owen and Janice Rogers Brown on Wednesday. Debate will ensue for two days and Friday will be D-Day for deciding the fate of the filibuster's use against judicial nominations.

I will be traveling during this time so unfortunately my ability to post on the subject will be non-existent. I can only hope that by the time I return, this matter will at last be resolved.

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Bush-Hating Liberals see "Sith" criticism at Cannes...

Hate to say "I told you so" but...no, wait, I love to say it. Last month while reading the "Revenge of the Sith" novelization, I predicted that the Left would use it as metaphor to criticize Bush. Well, "Sith" premiered at Cannes to thunderous applause because - like Michael Moore's crapumentary last year - the audience saw George Lucas' film as a slam on President Bush.

And then came the zinger, with the protagonist, Anakin Skywalker, saying just before becoming Darth Vader: "You are either with me — or you are my enemy."

To the Cannes audience, often sympathetic to anti-Bush messages in cinema as last year's triumph here of Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11" attested, that immediately recalled Bush's 2001 ultimatum, "You're either with us or against us in the fight against terror."

While Lucas denies the direct parallel to Bush and the current War on Terror - he explains that when he wrote it the current situation in Iraq didn't exist - he admits the similarities are there.

"Most bad people think they're good people," he said.

Of course, it's not like he made the movie with the design of political commentary but he obviously couldn't resist. And no, it's not going to hinder my enjoyment of it. But all that remains is for members of the MSM to start writing columns about the President, using references in the movie to help bolster their arguments.

Who'll be the first, I wonder?

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May 15, 2005

The Big Story this weekend: Newsweek Screws the Pooch...

I've been really busy this weekend so posting has been light to say the least. But THE story that has kind of sucked the oxygen out of the blogosphere in the last couple of days has been a stupidly bogus report that CIA interrogators at Guantanamo desecrated copies of the Koran, which included flushing one down the crapper.

Now you and I would just shrug and say "Who gives a F.....?" But Muslims around the world went completely mental over this report and started rioting and killing people.

Then out of nowhere, Newsweek retracts the story and offers a lame apology.

WTF? I mean, are these cretins serious? The latest issue of the magazine poses the question: "How did Newsweek get it's facts wrong?" Well, there's a simple answer to that one - because they're a bunch of Liberal Bush-haters who'll print anything that makes this administration's policies look bad whether it's true or not!

Michelle Malkin has a great summary of this "journalistic" screw-up and the ramifications that are being felt across the globe.

Newsweek has blood on its hands. Blood on its desks. Isikoff should cough up his source.
As if the-network-formerly-known-as-MSNBC wasn't having enough problems. The Pajamahadeen are smacking Newsweek around like a rag doll, a treatment that is well-earned.

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Novak: Insiders see Hillary V. Allen in 2008...


Robert Novak writes what I'm already thinking:

Members of the inner circle of high-ranking House Republicans privately agree that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York is an absolute lock for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination and will not be easy to defeat in the general election.

The same lawmakers believe the Republican race to oppose Clinton is wide open but regard Sen. George Allen of Virginia as having the edge over Sen. Bill Frist of Tennessee. The consensus among them is that Allen is a better candidate than Frist and will [have] the advantage over him in GOP primaries. The House members see little or no prospect for former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Sen. John McCain of Arizona or Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

The Clinton-vs.-Allen forecast by the leading House members duplicates the National Journal's poll of insiders from both parties.

I'm so sure that Hillary is "lock" yet. There are several Dems in a potential field who are not ready to just roll over for her. In the end, however, I don't see a scenario where she is not the nominee. And Allen is definitely my favorite for the GOP.

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May 14, 2005

Diane Lane photo of the Week...

Oh Gandalf...
I just love it when you talk about Star Trek!

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The death of "Trek"?


Just finished watching my tape of the season/series finale of "Star Trek: Enterprise". And basically for Star Trek fans, if you're going to have a feeling of closure, now is the time. It's too fresh to criticize the finale. Only time and perspective can give a decent assessment. I think I'll probably watch the tape again in a couple of months. Suffice to say, it was a decent wrap-up of the series and maybe for Star Trek as a whole. At least for a while. But now that it's all over I have a few thoughts on the state of Star Trek.

I'm not a "trekkie" or "trekker" or whatever they call the most devoted fans these days. I'm just someone who grew up with the show as part of the culture and I've enjoyed some aspects of the phenomena and been indifferent to others.

First of all, let me say that I'm very disappointed in the demise of this particular show. I'm not sure I can honestly say I loved it. But I certainly liked it enough to watch every single episode and eagerly anticipate each one. It had it's rough patches over the last four years but to me it feels like a show cut down in its prime. It seemed to be just about hitting its stride. But in this ratings-sensitive environment, that's not good enough.

So why did "Enterprise" come to an untimely end? Many reasons.

The first is one that was mentioned by the show's creators - Rick Berman and Brannon Braga. They chalked it up to franchise fatigue. In a sense they're right. Not because the show wasn't good enough, but because there was not enough buzz or excitement at a time when there has been a "Trek" franchise on TV (sometimes two at a time) since 1987. I don't think it was so much that people were tired of the franchise as much as they took it for granted.

Back in the mid-1980's when the generation that grew up on repeats from The Original Series (TOS) heard that a new show was coming it generated a lot of talk and anticipation. And overall I would rate The Next Generation (TNG) as probably the best of all the shows - even TOS. But toward the end it seemed like Paramount and Berman & Braga wanted to try and squeeze every last drop out of the franchise. In my honest opinion, I had no interest in either Deep Space Nine or Voyager.

If TNG had simply ended in the spring of 1994 and the franchise had gone on hiatus for several years, I think "Enterprise" would have been more warmly received. I think the concept was terrific and gave fans an opportunity to learn a lot of the backstory of the "Trek" universe that was more close to home. The characters seemed closer to our own world, more in the early stages of deep space exploration.

The next reason is that good science fiction is so much more available today than it was fifteen years ago. After the original Trek, the only sci-fi shows that made it to network television that I can recall were the original Battlestar Galactica, Buck Rogers and Quantum Leap. But with the proliferation of cable, science-fiction fans were able to get their fix more readily. It's interesting that Star Wars, which was the catalyst for making the Star Trek movies and later the TNG series is now one of the alternatives that is stealing Trek's thunder with the release of the prequels.

And finally, I think the fan base had matured. The people who enjoyed TNG in their twenties had for the most part married, had kids and taken on a bunch of responsibility. Time was a factor in 2001 when "Enterprise" premiered. The target audience just didn't have as much time to commit to a new series as they had when they were much younger.

"Enterprise", while well-conceived had some problems in its execution. The series did show moments of brilliance but it too often recycled old ideas from past shows. It also fell into the trap of playing it safe. At this point, the audience was looking for something more edgy, more gritty and real. One need only look at the success of the re-envisioned "Battlestar Galactica" on the Sci-Fi channel to see what turns the audience's cranks.

The characters were well written but poorly developed. The stories were too tentative. I mean that it was interesting to see the crew's aversion to the transporter in season one but by season four they were still using shuttlepods. Boring. The connections to TOS were slow to develop and a lot of what the fans had hoped to see never materialized.

Ironically, it was in this past final season that the show seemed to really get good. Perhaps this was the creators' vision all along in that they expected it to be on the air for seven seasons (or more) and they didn't want to "shoot their wad" too soon. But that kind of thinking is what led to so-so episodes and light ratings.

I don't plan on buying the series on DVD because quite frankly each season is weighed down by so many mediocre episodes that it makes the purchase price too prohibitive. I may watch the show in syndication now and again because I developed a genuine attachment to most of the characters. It really is a shame that a show with so much potential never quite reached it.

So it the franchise dead? Well, for every fan who would deny that it is and say that it's "simply pining for the fjords" there is another who would shake their head and (if I may take the "dead parrot" analogy further) declare that "Star Trek" has ceased "to be". That it is an "ex-franchise".

In order for Star Trek to have a future, there needs to be a "cooling off" period for the fans. They need to see NO new Star Trek for a while. It's like the kid locked in the candy store that makes himself sick. Or put another way, most guys think it would be really cool to be a gynecologist until they realize that these doctors must come home after a hard day's work and say to their wives "Honey, if I see one more vagina today, I think I'm going to lose it".

Perhaps if after four or five years of no Star Trek the idea of a new series will seem exciting. But the concept must also be a good one - nothing half-assed. And I think it might be a good idea to have someone other than the Berman/Braga team take the helm.

So for now, I will turn my attention elsewhere and if something new for Star Trek comes over the horizon I will cast a skeptical eye and maybe I'll even give it a chance. Until then, I'll just wistfully look back on an era that for all intents and purposes has come to an end. All good things...

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May 13, 2005

Frist will seek confirmation votes on Judges next week...

Man this is excruciating, but now that the Bolton fiasco is supposedly out of the way, the GOP can focus their energy on judicial reform. Sen. Bill Frist announced today that he will call for up or down votes on Priscilla Owen and Janice Rogers Brown next week.

This will set the stage for the big showdown. Let's get on with it, shall we?

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Handful of Left-Wing billionaires has hijacked the Democrat party...

Former RNC chair Rich Bond writes about the current "strategery" being pursued by the MoveOn.org guerrillas. Dubbed the "Phoenix Group", a group of wealthy Liberal financiers led by George Soros iis dumping tons of money into ad campaigns that take aim not just at Republicans but also moderate Democrats who aren't considered "true believers" in the Democrats' political war.

The centrist Democratic Leadership Council has recently become the subject of MoveOn.org's wrath. And because Minority Whip Steny Hoyer of Maryland voted for the bankruptcy reform bill, he has come under heavily-funded fire.

While Mr. Hoyer is impregnable politically, winning with 69 percent of the vote in his last election, the message MoveOn.org is sending is clear: Bipartisan cooperation is unacceptable.

These party elitists, led by Mr. Soros and his rich friends, are determined to win from the left or not win at all. The Howard Dean-led Democrats still refuse to recognize the reality of the curse of the northern liberal: Liberalism is a failed ideology.

All this inter-party warfare and purging is bound to do some real damage to the Democrats, to the benefit of President Bush and the GOP.

These are the actions of a permanent minority, not an emerging majority.

Certainly Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean deserves a good deal of the blame for his party's disarray. Mr. Dean's aim is consistent with the Soros hijacking of the Democratic Party: Repackage lousy-tasting liberalism and expect fellow Democrats and the voting public to swallow it. Mr. Dean displayed the same far-left pandering in the operation of his post-presidential campaign's political-action committee, Democracy for America, when he coddled up to liberals and ignored party moderates.

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John Bolton - the "Phantom Menace"

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Dems not done yet on Bolton?

Sen. Barbara Boxer floats the filibuster card on the vote for Bolton's confirmation.

Video from Chris Matthews' "Goofball" on MSNBC provided by Trey Jackson.

Oh, go ahead, Barb. Just try it.

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Michael Ross Dead - And more irony...

Convicted serial murderer Michael Ross, was in fact put to death last night in CT. And that's that.

Here's the part that really kills me (no pun intended). At this point, Ross was willing to die. Even wanted to die.

But the same Liberal a-holes who couldn't wait to pull Terri Shiavo's feeling tube because her husband swore up and down that it was what she wanted went to unreal lengths to try and keep Ross alive - against his stated wishes!

"I owe these people. I killed their daughters. If I could stop the pain, I have to do that. This is my right," the former insurance agent and Cornell University graduate said last year. "I don't think there's anything crazy or incompetent about that."
Unbelievable.

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May 12, 2005

CT to actually execute a death row inmate?

Michael Ross is scheduled to get the big nasty injection at 2:01am this morning while we sleep. The vigil begins. God forbid these same assholes could have shown the same compassion for Terri Shiavo, an innocent woman who couldn't even speak for herself but was condemned to death by starvation by her douche bag "husband" who had already moved on by taking a common law wife and siring two children by her.

Ross was sent to death row for the murders of four young women and girls in Connecticut in the 1980s, and confessed to four more slayings in Connecticut and New York. He also raped most of the women.
Nah. This guy is just misunderstood, right?. Where are the freaking feminists? They should be calling for this guy to be publicly castrated before they snuff him out. This is NOT a case of a poor bastard in the wrong place at the wrong time for one count of murder. This f*cktard not only killed innocent women, but he raped them too. If there is another piece of shit that deserves to be beaten to death with his own severed arm more than Ross, I'd like to know about it.


The last execution in New England was in 1960, when Joseph "Mad Dog" Taborsky went to the electric chair in Connecticut for a series of murders and robberies. Of the six New England states, only Connecticut and New Hampshire have the death penalty. New Hampshire has no one on death row and has not executed anyone since 1939.

Death penalty opponents warned that Ross' execution could break down a political and psychological barrier against capital punishment in New England and start a domino effect in the region.

Not likely. But if so, let the dominos fall.

Edwin Shelley, whose 14-year-old daughter Leslie was Ross' seventh victim, said he planned to watch Ross die.

"It's going to be nice to come home and realize that the case is finished and that he has received his just rewards," Shelley said. "I think I will be very relaxed and at ease with myself."

Hopefully, the lawyers in this case have exhausted their bag of tricks and by 2:02am Michael Ross goes to sleep forever. I know I'll sleep better knowing this is the case.

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Sharon Stone's adopted son: Born to "unknown and unrelated parents in Texas"...

Umm. Did her spokesperson mean "unwed" or "unmarried", perhaps? Or is she just relieved that the parents - from Texas - weren't brother and sister?

What a dipshit! Actually I think anyone who names their son "Laird Vonne" is either a big Star Wars fan or is need of some serious freakin' therapy.

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Bolton has left the committee...


With "no recommendation", the Senate Foreign Relations Committee finally voted 10-8 to send John Bolton's nomination to the full body for an up or down vote as U.N. Ambassador.

The Democrats ultimately lose because Bolton is all but assured confirmation in the Senate. But they got their pound of flesh. If he were a lesser man, John Bolton would be hobbled and sufficiently wounded in his new job. But the fact that he has the fortitude to bring the United Nations to a new understanding of the White House's foreign policy, diplomats at Turtle Bay are fudging their shorts (or tunics or whatever their cultural garb happens to be) right now.

And damn Voinovich for being such a turd. Frist and co. better keep him on a short leash and whatever perks that putz currently enjoys should be severely curtailed.

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