Friday, February 29, 2008

New polar bear cub to melt over!

After Cute Knut and Flocke, Germany on Friday got a new polar bear cub to ooh and aah over -- and this time one which hasn't been rejected or eaten by its mother.

Wilbaer is the name of the new fluffy white arrival, a play on words combining Wilhelma and Eisbaer -- German for polar bear -- and although he was born on December 10 his existence has been kept secret until now.

Wilbaer's mother Corinna appears to have decided to do her maternal duty and not abandon her progeny while still in cubhood, Stuttgart zoo director Dieter Jauch in southern Germany said.


Gotta love a prince in uniform!

HOT - HOT - HOT!!!

I love men with guns, men in uniform, and men who are royalty - Prince Harry is the trifecta!

Planned Parenthood exposed again

Planned Parenthood isn't interested in "helping women," they just want to get as much money as they possibly can from them via abortions or any kind of donations.

Planned Parenthood Agreed to Accept Race-Motivated Donations

According to telephone conversations taped by a student pro-life publication, The Advocate, at the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA), Planned Parenthood locations in Ohio and Idaho agreed to accept money targeted at minorities even when racist intentions were expressed.

Planned Parenthood of Central Ohio confirmed to Cybercast News Service that the telephone conversation with a presumed donor occurred in mid-summer 2007, adding that it was not the policy of Planned Parenthood to accept donations specifically to underwrite abortions among minority women.
read more, including transcripts

I just think this UCLA Advocate paper is awesome! Last year they did a sting exposing Planned Parenthood for trying to help a 15 year old girl lie about a statutory rape situation - this happens all the time with PP - ALL THEY CARE ABOUT IS MONEY!

Read more from the Advocate on how abortion is affecting the African-American population as well as some history on Margaret Singer (founder of PP) and her racist, eugenic views in their current issue.

Last year Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) submitted a bill to block federal funding for Planned Parenthood, saying:

“It’s time the American people know that the largest recipient of Title X funding in America is the largest abortion provider as well. It’s time to pass the Pence Amendment to keep taxpayer money out of the hands of Planned Parenthood.”

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Red Sox at the White House!

Singling out ace hurler Daisuke Matzuzaka, Bush made reference to the large group of Japanese reporters who were on hand, joking, "His press corps is bigger than mine." He then noted another similarity he said he shares with "Dice K": "We both have trouble answering questions in English."

Throughout, Bush was effusive in his praise for the Red Sox franchise.

"I love the fact that you've got some of the game's biggest stars. I mean, 'Big Papi,' the guy lights up the screen," Bush said of Ortiz. "He brings a great personality."

But he couldn't help but note the absence of Manny Ramirez, who also did not attend the first Red Sox visit to the Bush White House after the 2004 World Series.

"I'm sorry [Ortiz'] running mate, Manny Ramirez, isn't here. I guess his grandmother died again," Bush quipped, drawing laughter form he crowd but quickly adding, "Just kidding. Tell Manny I didn't mean it."

"And how about Jonathan Papelbon? The guy pitches almost as well as he dances. And I appreciate the dress code. Thanks for wearing pants."

Girl sentenced to death by courts recovers

THIS is why we should ALWAYS be on the side of caution when innocent LIFE is in question. Doctors are wrong all the time. People wake from comas. Persistent vegetative state can never be definitively known. Keep the states and the courts and even doctors out of the business of withdrawing life support. This is why we fought to save Terri Schiavo from a court-ordered death.

'Back from the dead' coma girl could testify against her stepfather

An 11-year-old girl American girl who was beaten into a coma two years ago and nearly died when a court ordered she be removed from life support has made such a remarkable recovery that she may be able to testify against her alleged abuser, according to reports.

Haleigh Poutre, now 14, from Westfield, Massachusetts, was so close to death after the beating in September 2005 that state officials sought a court order to remove her from life support, the Boston Globe reported today.

Her stepfather Jason Strickland, who is accused of beating her, battled in the courts to save her life - but authorities dismissed his efforts as a calculated attempt to avoid a murder charge.

The order to remove Haleigh from life support was granted when doctors said she had no chance of any meaningful recovery - but, one day later, doctors noticed that she was breathing on her own.

Now, after a dramatic turnaround, she has communicated painful memories. "She could be a terrific witness," a source, who asked not to be identified because of a court prohibition against speaking to the media about the case, told the Globe. "She's recalling most of the past."

British Lolita #2 with help from mom and dad

Your 16-year-old daughter falls for a divorcee of 36 and wants him to move in. Would you let him? Meet the parents who did

When Alison Garcia, 16, announced that she was leaving home to be with her 36-year-old lover, her parents could have been forgiven for hitting the roof.

Instead, Sheila and Paul Garcia did something most other parents would find unthinkable.

Last month, they invited divorced double-glazing fitter and father-of-one Craig Wright into their home, where he now shares a bedroom with their daughter.

According to 51-year-old Sheila, of Northfleet, Kent, who runs a yachting business with her 56-year-old husband, they had no choice in the matter.

"What I didn't want was to back her into a corner by laying down the law and forcing her to choose between me and him," she says.
Rather more enlightening is her admission: "We took the liberal approach to bringing up our child.

"We treated her like a mini-adult all along, never taking the attitude that because she was a child we should treat her as less of an equal." [Children need to be treated as children, not adults! At least in America 16 is still a child]

But if anything, the experience of the Garcia family is a depressing reminder of the perils of modern parenting, where boundaries and guidelines are so often thrown out of the window and where allowing a child to do whatever they want is somehow seen as the action of a loving, trusting parent.

Alison met her middle-aged lover in a pub - despite being two years below the legal age for drinking alcohol.
A few weeks later, Alison introduced Wright to her parents, and told them they wanted to rent a place together.

In January, she asked them if her lover could move into the family home while they save up. [Wait, the 36 year old couldn't afford an apartment?! If they are so mature, they should be able to get their own place]

Not surprisingly, Sheila was initially horrified at the prospect.
"My mum told me in no uncertain terms there was no way, because she's dead against us being together.

"But my dad managed to convince her that it was better for us to live there with them than move out into a flat that was not decent. [Astounding logic from a FATHER!]
But on the other, the couple seem strangely reluctant to accept any responsibility for what is happening to their daughter, blaming "society" instead.
A critic might counter that it is often parents themselves who pass on such values to their children and then react with horror at the resulting behaviour.

But Sheila insists: "For now, all I can do is bite my tongue and hope I'm right about what I think the outcome of this will be."
"When it does end in tears, I'll be here to pick up the pieces. That's what mums do," says Sheila.

"I want her to be able to come to me for support and advice.

Related stories: British Lolita ; Italian Lolita - this time 13!

The Goat and the Hound

AWWWWWW! Another cute abandoned baby animal!

Paternal dog Billy takes on an unusual kid

A paternal dog has adopted an abandoned baby goat as his surrogate child.

Billy the boxer has become the constant companion of the 12-day old kid called Lilly. He sleeps with the goat, licks her clean, and protects her from any dangers at Pennywell Farm wildlife centre at Buckfastleigh, near Totnes, Devon.

The kid was abandoned by her mother when she was only a few hours old and adopted by paternal Billy when his owner Elizabeth Tozer began hand rearing the goat.

The unusual bond has developed over the last month and the pair are now inseparable.
Lilly was the smallest of a litter of three kids and her mother abandoned her because she could only care for the two stronger ones. The pair have attracted quite a crowd at the animal centre and the staff are keen to see how their relationship will develop.

Related posts: CUTENESS!!!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Obama and the birth of the progressive movement

Jonah Goldberg in the March, 10, 2008 issue ($) of National Review asks:

Why am I a racist because Ronald Reagan believed in federalism, while Barack Obama is an idealist for invoking a bunch of jingoists, racists, and eugenicists who could not have fathomed that anyone with Barack Obama’s skin color might be qualified for the White House?

Goldberg was referring to how Paul Krugman said it was racist for Ronald Reagan to menion "states' rights" during a campaign speech in Mississippi in 1980. Goldberg went on to discuss how Barak Obama said at a rally at the University of Wisconsin - Madison "And where better to affirm our ideals than here in Wisconsin, where a century ago the progressive movement was born?"

What did the progressives at the University of Wisconsin believe in?

The president of the university during its heyday as the laboratory of progressivism was Charles Van Hise. A devoted eugenicist, he explained that “he who thinks not of himself primarily, but of his race, and of its future, is the new patriot.” Additionally, “we know enough about eugenics so that if the knowledge were applied, the defective classes would disappear within a generation.”

The most famous intellectual at the University of Wisconsin was arguably E. A. Ross, coiner of the phrase “race suicide” and one of America’s leading “raceologists.” “The theory that races are virtually equal in capacity,” quoth Ross, “leads to such monumental follies as lining the valleys of the South with the bones of half a million picked whites in order to improve the condition of four million unpicked blacks.”

Ross was hardly alone. Virtually all of the economic policies Obama favors today can be traced back to the efforts of academics at the University of Wisconsin, who helped create the modern welfare state, but did so in the hope of weeding out the dark, the dusky, and the otherwise unfit from the white man’s genetic garden. The politics of these progressive intellectuals conformed perfectly to the worst caricatures of George W. Bush. They instituted loyalty oaths, accused opponents of World War I of treason, and saw in militarism the best hope for organizing society.

Reagan was no racist for supporting states’ rights; he was a lover of freedom. And Obama is no villain for proclaiming his indebtedness to the progressives at the University of Wisconsin. But the question remains:
[and this is where he asks the question I opened with]


William F. Buckley, Jr., godfather of conservatism and founder of my beloved National Review has died.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008



Fox: '24' won't start until 2009

Fans of the Fox drama "24" will have to wait until next January to see Jack Bauer again, this television season's most prominent casualty of the Hollywood writers strike.

The network has committed to air a full season on consecutive weeks, and had been planning to start last month. But if it had started airing new episodes soon, the season finale would not have taken place until the summer, when TV networks rarely show their high-profile programs.

Even though eight episodes for this season had already been filmed before the beginning of the writers strike, producers would have had to ramp up production soon to complete the season.

A January 2009 start seemed the best way to comply with viewers' wishes that a season's episodes run without interruption to conclusion, Fox said.

The company that produces the series, 20th Century Fox Television, also confirmed that creator Joel Surnow was leaving as one of the executive producers. [Uh-oh] Fox is owned by News Corp. ...

Why can't they start in Sept. like other shows and go without repeats?

Monday, February 25, 2008

The bizarro world where the Pats are 19-0

This is awesome on so many levels!

Even though they didn't win the Super Bowl, the New England Patriots will still be champions in several countries around the world.

Before major NFL events, like the Super Bowl, participating teams often pre-print victory apparel. The winning team sells its items right away, but the losing team is left with large quantities of merchandise that cannot be sold.

In this case, World Vision is partnering with the NFL and Reebok to help children in need receive the treasure of new clothing. Instead of throwing it away, the losing team's pre-printed victory apparel will bring joy to children in need around the world.

There is a whole generation of poor children out there who have received nice new clothes, but think the Patriots are undefeated World Champions!

How many times have you had to talk your dog down from the roof?

Suicidal pets get anti-depressants

Pets at risk of self-harm are increasingly being prescribed anti-depressants because they cannot discuss problems in their lives with others, a leading veterinarian says.

Zoo and wildlife medicine specialist with the UK’s Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, Romain Pizzi, told the Telegraph that more pets were being prescribed Prozac.

...“Symptoms often include plucking out their feathers or self-harming, which is obviously very dangerous.

“When cockatoos in particular are depressed they can start to self-mutilate and peck their own legs to the bone."

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Women DO regret abortion

As much as pro-"choice" extremists like to deny it, post abortion stress syndrome is real. Women DO regret abortion and suffer terrible consequences because of their "choice." The problem of boyfriends, parents, employers, etc. pressuring and forcing women to have abortions is another reality pro-"choicers" try to ignore and hide. Women deserve better than abortion.

Young artist hanged herself after grief of aborting her twins

A talented artist hanged herself because she was overcome with grief after aborting her twins, an inquest heard yesterday.

Emma Beck, 30, left a note saying: "Living is hell for me. I should never have had an abortion. I see now I would have been a good mum. I told everyone I didn't want to do it, even at the hospital. I was frightened, now it is too late. I died when my babies died. I want to be with my babies - they need me, no one else does."

Yesterday an inquest heard that in the run-up to the termination Miss Beck discussed it with her GP, who described her as "extremely vulnerable".

She missed one hospital appointment and cancelled another before finally seeing a doctor at Treliske hospital in Truro, Cornwall.

But the counsellor at the unplanned pregnancy clinic was on holiday, so the doctor gave her the number of a "telephone pregnancy counselling service".

Eight days later, in September 2006, the same doctor performed the termination.

In February the following year, the night before her 31st birthday, Miss Beck hanged herself at her home in Helston.

She had recently split up with her boyfriend, identified only as Ben, who was said to have "reacted badly" to her pregnancy.

The Truro inquest heard that Miss Beck's mother later contacted the hospital, demanding to know why she was not given more support.

Sylvia Beck, 62, from Woking, Surrey, wrote: "I want to know why she was not given the opportunity to see a counsellor.

"She was only going ahead with the abortion because Ben did not want the twins. I believe this is what led Emma to take her own life, because she could not live with what she had done."

If you or someone you know is hurting after an abortion, visit

If you want to learn more about forced abortion in America, visit

If you think the mainstream feminist movement has failed women and that women deserve better than the violence and exploitation of abortion, visit

Beware the nanny state!

Horrible story!

My baby had cancer but social workers falsely accused me of child abuse and took all three of my children

One Saturday, when the baby was just four weeks old, Louise noticed that she was looking very ill, as though she was about to collapse. ...

"One of the doctors then sat me down and said: 'It is touch and go'" The team mentioned right away that it might be cancer. ...

But further investigation had showed that the left kidney and the area around it was swollen, and among medical staff there was a wide variety of opinion about the cause. Before long, doctors became highly suspicious that this was, in fact, caused by an injury. ...

Her words fell on deaf ears. Back home, her elder daughter, who was being cared for by a neighbour, was collected by social workers and taken into foster care.

Yet still the trusting Louise thought it would all be sorted out in a few days. How wrong she was. ...

Four days later, worse news followed: her baby daughter was to be taken into foster care, too. ...

In an emotional outburst, she blurted out to the jury that she wanted to take a lie detector test to prove that she had done nothing wrong. It was the turning point. The jury believed her, and in November 2004 she was acquitted of the charges. However, her children remained in care. ...

In 2005, a year after she had been acquitted, Louise had became pregnant for a third time.

She is reluctant to talk about the father, or name him, although they are no longer together - but at Christmas time, when she was heavily pregnant, the social workers called and told her they planned to take the latest addition away from her at birth.

"I couldn't believe my ears," says Louise.

"I had been declared not guilty in a criminal court - yet they still had both my children and were wanting my new baby. It was torture."

The baby was born early in 2006. True to their word, Louise had just given birth and was trying to breastfeed when the social workers arrived at Altnagelvin Hospital, Derry. ...

Ten days later, when she was about to leave hospital, the social workers returned and seized the child, placing the baby with foster parents.

Only recently - following the collapse of the Social Services Trust case - has Louise been given back the baby, and her eldest child, too.

She has missed a whole chunk of their early years.

But perhaps the saddest thing of all is that the little girl who was so sick as a baby may never return home again. She has known no mother or father apart from her foster parents, and has bonded with them very closely. ...

"She may never come home and live with me again because she wants to be with the only people she has ever recognised as her parents. It may be cruel to take her back now."

It is, by any standards, a tragic indictment of the child protection system.

Related post: No babies in England

Friday, February 22, 2008

"That man's a terrorist - I don't have time to explain right now, you're gonna have to trust me!"

But I'm Jack Bauer

A college student has been given probation for repeatedly ramming his car into another man's vehicle last year on Interstate 95 in Maryland, claiming the man was a terrorist and he was the character Jack Bauer, a federal agent on the Fox television show "24."

However, the victim, 30-year-old Marlon Cantoral provided a false address to police and did not appear at the court proceedings [not a terrorist, just an illegal immigrant], prompting prosecutors to enter into a plea deal with the student, 23-year-old Edgar Sullivan of Elverson, Pa.

According to charging documents, Sullivan twice struck Cantoral's van, then ran after him into the lobby of a prison building shouting, "He's a terrorist." Sullivan was further quoted as saying that his name was Jack Bowers (Bauer) and that he worked for the FBI and the Secret Service.

Sullivan pleaded guilty to drunken driving in September and apologized in court Thursday. His attorney, Charles Broida, says his client is embarrassed but doesn't remember what happened.

[I think he was on something stronger than alcohol.]

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Not another black president!

From The Onion

Do We Really Want Another Black President After The Events Of Deep Impact?

Have we learned nothing from the tragic events of 1998, when, under the watch of President Morgan Freeman, this nation was plunged into chaos, and hundreds of millions of people died at the hands of the deadly Wolf-Beiderman space rock? The mere fact that this country is even considering putting another black man, Barack Obama, in the Oval Office proves that we have not.

We can't deny the facts, people. All we will get by electing an African-American is Texas-size space particles crashing into the Earth's surface, mega-tsunamis that barrel into the Appalachian Mountains, and 6.6 billion dead people.

I'm not suggesting that President Freeman was directly responsible for the creation of the Wolf-Beiderman comet or its Earth-bound path. That would be ridiculous. What I am saying is that under the watch of a black man that comet destroyed the entire Eastern seaboard. So, if history is any indicator, a vote for Barack Obama in 2008 is essentially a vote for the complete and total obliteration of the human race.


As if that is not enough, history shows us that, besides carrying the baggage of a guaranteed asteroid strike, black heads of state also give terrorists extra motivation to destroy the United States. During the presidency of 24's David Palmer, there were no fewer than four nuclear bombs smuggled into this country. That's four more than under any white president. Though we should have known better than to elect President Palmer in the first place (he was elected three years after President Freeman left office), the U.S. populace made him the commander in chief because it was swayed by then-Senator Palmer's commitment to change, his no-nonsense approach, and his ability to inspire. Sound familiar?


I concede that the United States has had a competent African-American president in the huge black guy from the The Fifth Element, who did great things for this country by keeping the evil Mr. Zorg at bay. But that is years from now. There is no denying that by 2236, when we have flying taxicabs, this country will be ready for a black president. But until then, if we want life in this great land to continue as we know it, we owe it to ourselves to make the right choice and reelect Kevin Kline.

"I've got chafage!"

Just a WEIRD story

Tokyo marathon runner solves mystery of sore nipples

After his first assault at a marathon last year banker Brian Jones was shocked to discover the sharp pain in his chest was not cardiovascular, but bleeding nipples.

"When I took my shirt off at the end it was white -- apart from two particular parts of it," he told Reuters in an interview after completing his second Tokyo Marathon at the weekend.

"It looked like I had been shot by a sniper. This year I bought some Vaseline. It worked, although I had nasty chafing elsewhere."

Such dark thoughts are unlikely to have troubled Sunday's winner, Switzerland's Viktor Roethlin, who powered to victory in two hours, seven minutes and 23 seconds.

But for around 30,000 fun runners who took part in Tokyo, issues such as chafing can trigger deep despair.

"I struggled to find a comfortable pair of underwear this morning," said Jones, who clocked 4:37:46, beating his 2007 time by 11 minutes.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

"I'll give you one more shot: List Barack Obama's accomplishments as a US senator"

Surprise, surprise - an Obama supporter (state senator from Texas) can't name a legislative accomplishment on MSNBC with Chris Matthews, but doesn't think that matters because Obama "inspires."

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Born Alive Abortion: an OBAMAnation

Remember my post about how babies in England surviving abortion are left to die and how we are lucky the US doesn't do that? Well, Obama opposed and blocked the Infants Born Alive Protection Act of 2002 that passed the U.S. Senate on a voice vote when the Illinois legislature was considering it. Oh, yeah and he also supports partial birth abortion and taxpayer-funded abortions.

That is NOT the kind of "change" I want in this country! I, for on
e, don't want to turn the clock on human rights back to 20th century policies when such hideous crimes were legal.

Abortion foes target Obama because of his vote record on Illinois legislation

Abortion foes in Illinois, following the lead of registered nurse Jill Stanek, are targeting Obama (D-Ill.) for a number of “present” and “no” votes he cast on anti-abortion legislation during his time in the Illinois state Senate.

It is hardly unusual that a Democratic candidate would receive unfavorable attention from anti-abortion groups. But Stanek and other anti-abortion crusaders in Illinois are targeting Obama because he voted on a package of legislation collectively known as the Illinois Born Alive Infants Protection Act.

The legislation came about after Stanek, then a nurse at Christ Hospital in the Chicago suburb of Oak Lawn, witnessed late-term abortions “where babies were being aborted alive and shelved to die in the soiled utility room” of the hospital, in her words.

Stanek, who said she held one of those infants until it died after about 45 minutes, began reaching out to public officials, testifying before both state and national lawmakers.

From 2001 to 2002, Obama voted either “present” or “no” on the legislation. In his floor speeches at the time, he cited in particular his concerns about the constitutionality of the definition of a “born alive infant” and the inclusion of potential civil and criminal penalties for doctors in these situations. He also warned that the bill might compromise the relationship between a woman and her doctor.

The measure failed in the Illinois statehouse in both 2001 and 2002.

For evidence from Jill Stanek on how, contrary to Obama's claims, the definition of "born alive" was the same for both the U.S. Congress and the Illinois bills and then when the congressional one changed, Obama blocked an amendment to change the Ill. one, too, read here.

Hmm... maybe this is why we're not hearing much about Obama on the issues ...

Finally, scientific validation!


How's this for junk science - even with three Gold Gloves, Yankees captain Derek Jeter has been labeled the worst fielding shortstop in baseball.

But the numbers prove it, researchers at the University of Pennsylvania said yesterday at a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, in (of course) Boston.

Using a complex statistical method, researchers concluded that Alex Rodriguez was one of the best shortstops in the game when he played for the Texas Rangers.

When Rodriguez became a Yankee in 2004, he moved to third base while Jeter stayed at short.

But that may have been a mistake, said Penn researcher Shane Jensen.

Researchers looked at every ball put in play from 2002 through 2005 and recorded where the shots went.

Jensen said a player's success de pended on his range as well as how effectively he made decisions and positioned himself on the field.

Players were then ranked in each position from best to worst, with Mr. New York Baseball - Jeter - coming in dead last among major league shortstops during the research period.

A-Rod, who won two Gold Gloves as a shortstop, was ranked No. 2.

"The Yankees have one of the best defensive shortstops playing out of position in deference to one of the worst defensive shortstops," said Jensen.

Of course, the article goes on to quote scoffing Yankee fans, but what do they know - they haven't won a championship in 8 years!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Together we con

I found this story interesting because my dad keeps telling me how Obama is just like Gov. Deval Patrick (Mass.) and how that is not a good thing. He says Patrick was an unknown, inexperienced candidate who ran a great campaign, gave inspiring speeches, had the "Yes, we can!" slogan, but now that he's in office, he's in way over his head, has not been able to accomplish anything, and is considered a joke even by his own party. That may be one reason Hillary Clinton won in MA and NH.

Obama Echoes Deval Patrick...Again

The charismatic, brilliant, inspiring black politician came to the stage to address the latest attack from his white female opponent.

"Her dismissive point, and I hear it a lot from her staff, is all I have to offer is words," he said. "Just words.

"'We holds these truths to be self-evident,'" he continued as the crowd began to cheer and applaud, "'that all men are created equal' -- just words. Just words."

The applause increased.

"'We have nothing to fear but fear itself,'" the pol said. "Just words. 'Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.' Just words,'" he said, switching effortlessly from our Founding Fathers to FDR to JFK.

And then, the piece de resistance: "'I have a dream' -- just words," he said.

Barack Obama rebutting Hillary Clinton circa 2008?

Nope. Deval Patrick, ultimately successful Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate, responding to then-Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey in October 2006.

Of course, if you mistook the speech for one from Obama, you can be forgiven -- just this weekend Obama said something quite similar.

"Don't tell me words don't matter," Obama said to Wisconsin Democrats. "'I have a dream' -- just words. 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal' -- just words. 'We have nothing to fear but fear itself' - just words. Just speeches."

Watch Patrick HERE and Obama HERE.

Since last year, observers have been noting that rhetorical similarities between the two candidates with vaguely similar biographies and campaign pitches -- who also share political guru David Axelrod.

"It's a handoff," Axelrod explains in an email. "They're friends and allies. They share a view of politics and often riff off of each other."

Some, including the New York Observer noted that Obama's recent adoption of the "Yes, we can," slogan echoed Patrick's use of it.

"Yes we can reuse slogans," quipped Ben Smith at Politico, noting that a Patrick TV ad from 2006 uses the slogan -- as does an Obama state senate ad from 2004.

And Axelrod says"Yes we can" was Obama's campaign slogan in 2004. (So Obama echoed Patrick who echoed Obama.) ...

And of course Boston talk show host Howie Carr has changed Patrick's "Together we can" to "Together we con" for all the Deval scandals - from upgrading to an expensive Cadillac as his official vehicle last year to the more recent arrest of a top aide for sexually assaulting a 15 year old boy.

Who says the rest of the world hates us?

Sweet! Where can I get a top like that?!

Unpopular at home, Bush basks in African praise

Unpopular at home and in much of the world during the last year of his presidency, George W. Bush is basking in rare adulation on his African tour.

Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete poured praise on Bush in Dar es Salaam on Sunday, the second day of his five-nation African tour, each compliment applauded warmly by members of the east African country's cabinet.

Although around 2,000 Muslim demonstrators protested against Bush on the eve of his visit, many thousands more cheering, waving people lined his road from the airport on Saturday.

Banners across the route, decorated with Bush's image against a backdrop of Tanzania's Mt. Kilimanjaro, read: "We cherish democracy. Karibu (welcome) to President and Mrs Bush."

Others read: "Thank you for helping fight malaria and HIV." Dancers at the airport and at Kikwete's state house to greet Bush on Sunday, wore skirts and shirts decorated with his face.
Bush has spent more money on aid to Africa than his predecessor, Bill Clinton, and is popular for his personal programs to fight AIDS and malaria and to help hospitals and schools.

Bush has stressed new-style partnerships with Africa based on trade and investment and not purely on aid handouts.
Bush's legacy in Africa would be saving the lives of hundreds of thousands of mothers and children who would otherwise have died from malaria or AIDS and enabling millions of people to get an education, he said.

"I know you leave office in about 12 months' time. Rest assured that you will be remembered for many generations to come for the good things you've done for Tanzania and the good things you have done for Africa," Kikwete said.
I have no doubt that history will judge Bush kindly, as it did Reagan, once people get some perspective and the irrational hatred fades.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

The great moral debate of our time

Pro-Choice quote:
I am now speaking of rights under the Constitution, and not of moral or religious rights. I do not discuss the morals of the people of Missouri, but let them settle that matter for themselves. I hold that the people supporting abortion rights are civilized men as well as ourselves; that they bear consciences as well as we, and that they are accountable to God and their posterity, and not to us. It is for them to decide, therefore, the moral and religious right of the abortion question for themselves within their own limits. ... Let each State stand firmly by that great Constitutional right, let each State mind its own business and let its neighbors alone, and there will be no trouble on this question.

Pro-Life argument to those who say, "While I personally oppose abortion, I cannot impose my beliefs on anyone else":
When [one] says that whoever or whatever community wants abortions, they have a right to have them, he is perfectly logical if there is nothing wrong in the institution; but if you admit that it is wrong, he cannot logically say that anybody has a right to do wrong. . . .If it be a wrong, he cannot say that he would as soon see a wrong voted up as down.
If these arguments sound familiar, it is because they are taken from the Lincoln-Douglas debates with "abortion" substituted for "slavery." Slavery supporters were pro-choice, too. How progressive.

Inspired by a Students for Life email By Juliegha Norus, Wayne State University

Saturday, February 16, 2008

One reason I am wary of Obama and his supporters

Can Obama deliver anything "more than a feeling?"

From Wall Street Journal's Best of the Web Today (2/14/08)

We Shall Be Overcome
James Vicevich, a Connecticut radio talk show host, takes note of yet another creepy element of the Obama campaign. Consider these reports from Obama rallies:

  • Montecito, Calif., Sept. 8, 2007. "A woman standing in front of the stage appeared to faint as Obama spoke about Iraq," the Associated Press reported. "The candidate paused and asked the crowd to make way for firefighters. One supporter shouted, 'You're a good man,' leaving Obama momentarily at a loss for words. 'Well, I'm not the only one stopping to help her,' he said, sounding almost embarrassed."

  • Madison, Wis., Oct. 22, 2007. "This excitement mirrored the aura in the room that grew throughout his speech," reported WISN-TV. "Before the senator arrived, students were tossing around an inflatable cow above the crowd. Three people fainted in the midst of all the enthusiasm."

  • Hanover, N.H., Jan. 8, 2008. "Barack Obama's first and only rally on election day came to a sudden and lengthy stop when a young woman in the Dartmouth College gym fainted, and was eventually rolled off on a gurney by emergency medical technicians," the Los Angeles Times reported. "At first Obama half-narrated the episode, saying soothing things like, 'She's OK,' 'She's talking.' But the longer she lay on the floor, the quieter Obama got, standing on the podium, arms folded, looking worried as the medical crew worked." Minneapolis's WCCO-TV has video showing Obama handing a bottle of water to the Dartmouth damsel in distress.

  • Hartford, Conn., Feb. 4, 2008. "And when a woman appeared to faint in the standing-only VIP section in front of the podium, Obama paused his speech for over a minute as he directed the crowd to make way for an EMT team and tossed a bottle of water from the stage," reported the Yale Daily News.

  • Seattle, Feb. 8, 2008. "Climate change, the Iraq war and Obama tossing a bottle of water to a woman about to faint all received big cheers," reported. "As Obama told the crowd to part so that the woman in question could leave and called for help, a young girl in the crowd shouted out, 'What a man!' The audience roared with laughter (although the press that has seen this happen before rolled its eyes)."

What exactly are we to make of this? A cynic might wonder if the whole thing isn't staged, given how often it happens and how well-honed and self-serving Obama's standard response seems to be.

But if it's spontaneous, that's in a way even more unsettling. At the New Hampshire rally, Larry David of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" fame quipped, "Sinatra had the same effect on people." Sinatra made girls swoon by singing romantic songs. But America isn't electing a crooner in chief.

Obama has a talent for eliciting intense emotion--an ability that can be dangerous in a politician. What more does he have to offer? That's a hard question to answer, and it makes the prospect of an Obama presidency quite worrisome.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Album covers come to life

From Daily Mail

Ever wanted to be a popstar? Just find a suitable vinyl album cover, hold it over your face and you can join in the internet's latest - and silliest - craze...
I thought these two were the best. Black and white seems to help.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Insight into fetal pain

Fascinating NYT Mag article on fetal pain. I've only read the first 2 pages of the article so far, but I had to share some excerpts.

The First Ache

25 years ago newborn and premature babies did not receive anesthesia when undergoing surgery! This is the man who figured out they could feel pain and needed it:

Twenty-five years ago, when Kanwaljeet Anand was a medical resident in a neonatal intensive care unit, his tiny patients, many of them preterm infants, were often wheeled out of the ward and into an operating room. ... The babies came back in terrible shape: their skin was gray, their breathing shallow, their pulses weak. Anand spent hours stabilizing their vital signs, increasing their oxygen supply and administering insulin to balance their blood sugar.

“What’s going on in there to make these babies so stressed?” Anand wondered. ...“That’s when I discovered that the babies were not getting anesthesia,” he recalled recently. Infants undergoing major surgery were receiving only a paralytic to keep them still. Anand’s encounter with this practice occurred at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, England, but it was common almost everywhere. Doctors were convinced that newborns’ nervous systems were too immature to sense pain, and that the dangers of anesthesia exceeded any potential benefits.

...In a series of clinical trials, he demonstrated that operations performed under minimal or no anesthesia produced a “massive stress response” in newborn babies, releasing a flood of fight-or-flight hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. Potent anesthesia, he found, could significantly reduce this reaction. ... Anesthesia even made them more likely to survive. ... These were extraordinary results, and they helped change the way medicine is practiced. Today, adequate pain relief for even the youngest infants is the standard of care, and the treatment that so concerned Anand two decades ago would now be considered a violation of medical ethics. ...

Like the assumption that newborns didn't feel pain, now the prevailing view is that fetuses don't either. Although I'm not quite sure what the difference is between a premature baby and a fetus of the same gestational age - isn't it just location? Shouldn't they have the same responses? Why is this so shocking?

Some tests were done to observe physiological reactions:

Nicholas Fisk is a fetal-medicine specialist and director of the University of Queensland Center for Clinical Research in Australia. For years, he says, “I would be doing a procedure to a fetus, and the mother would ask me, ‘Does my baby feel pain?’ The traditional, knee-jerk reaction was, ‘No, of course not.’ ” But research in Fisk’s laboratory (then at Imperial College in London) was making him uneasy about that answer. It showed that fetuses as young as 18 weeks react to an invasive procedure with a spike in stress hormones and a shunting of blood flow toward the brain — a strategy, also seen in infants and adults, to protect a vital organ from threat. Then Fisk carried out a study that closely resembled Anand’s pioneering research, using fetuses rather than newborns as his subjects. He selected 45 fetuses that required a potentially painful blood transfusion, giving one-third of them an injection of the potent painkiller fentanyl. As with Anand’s experiments, the results were striking: in fetuses that received the analgesic, the production of stress hormones was halved, and the pattern of blood flow remained normal.

Fisk says he believes that his findings provide suggestive evidence of fetal pain — perhaps the best evidence we’ll get. Pain, he notes, is a subjective phenomenon; in adults and older children, doctors measure it by asking patients to describe what they feel. ...In the absence of such first-person testimony, he concludes, it’s better to err on the safe side and assume that the fetus can feel pain starting around 20 to 24 weeks.

How do fetuses react physically to painful stimulation?

... When the surgeon lowered his scalpel to the 25-week-old fetus [for surgery not abortion], Paschall saw the tiny figure recoil in what looked to him like pain. A few months later, he watched another fetus, this one 23 weeks old, flinch at the touch of the instrument. That was enough for Paschall. In consultation with the hospital’s pediatric pain specialist, “I tremendously upped the dose of anesthetic to make sure that wouldn’t happen again,” he says. In the more than 200 operations he has assisted in since then, not a single fetus has drawn back from the knife.
“I don’t care how primitive the reaction is, it’s still a human reaction,” Paschall says. “And I don’t believe it’s right. I don’t want them to feel pain.”

On the other hand, critics explain this away...

What about a fetus that draws back at the touch of a scalpel? Rosen says that, at least early on, this movement is a reflex, like a leg that jerks when tapped by a doctor’s rubber mallet. Likewise, the release of stress hormones doesn’t necessarily indicate the experience of pain; stress hormones are also elevated, for example, in the bodies of brain-dead patients during organ harvesting. [But, isn't it possible that "brain-dead" patients feel the pain of their organs being ripped out, too?]

Not only may fetuses feel pain, they may feel it worse than full grown babies and adults:

The fetus’s undeveloped state, in other words, may not preclude it from feeling pain. In fact, its immature physiology may well make it more sensitive to pain, not less: the body’s mechanisms for inhibiting pain and making it more bearable do not become active until after birth.

Now I will go back to finishing the article and hope you will, too.

Abortion: Legal, but unsafe, and not rare

This is from a comment I made on a friend's blog re: Roe v. Wade and I wanted to reproduce it here because I found some great information and links:

The younger generation is more prolife. Probably because we're the lucky few to be "chosen" to survive Roe but are missing 48 million brothers, sisters, friends, aunts, uncles, cousins, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, etc. Hmm, that still hasn't stopped crime or child abuse and neglect. The terrors of legal abortion are real:

Parents search for clues in daughter's unexplained death

Police: Parents Kidnap Daughter To Have Abortion


Overturning Roe v. Wade will not make abortion illegal in the US. It will turn the decisions and regulation back over to the states where it belongs. Abortion is currently one of the most common surgical procedures but also the least regulated. Roe v. Wade didn't get rid of back alley abortions, it merely legalize them and moved them to Main Street.

1978: Series exposed unsafe abortions,CST-NWS-high13.article

Dead Baby Found In Abortion Clinic, Clinic Closed; Authorities Suspect Employee Evidence Tampering

Inspections of N.J. licensed abortion clinics are rare / When health inspectors do visit abortion centers, they often find serious violations

Alabama Abortion Clinic to Stay Shut

Abortion center ordered to close: East Side clinic cited with violations

Abortion doctor charged; Physician accused of negligence, could face fine

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Love the sinner, hate the sin?

I was reading this article on the Berkely Marines thing and came across these passages:

Berkeley Eases Anti-Marines Stance

...The council members say they still strongly oppose the war and the recruitment of young people, but "deeply respect and support" the men and women of the armed forces.
Councilwoman Linda Maio said the council opposes recruitment, not the military. "It's behavior that we oppose, not the people," she said. ...

This sounds familiar. Kind of what Christians say about gays. "Hate the sin, love the sinner." But I don't think that sentiment is acceptable to gays, is it? Just as "I support the troops but not the mission" rings hollow to conservatives? Yet each side that says that thinks it's taking a principled stand while being tolerant and meeting the other side half way.

Related posts: Update on Berkeley Marines
Retreat? Hell, we just got here!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Forced marriages in England

I was forced to marry my cousin - it's normal in my culture, but SO WRONG

Disgusted by her arranged marriage to a cousin - a suitor found for her by her father - she has fled her family home and now, fearful of reprisals, lives under police protection.

Khaleda's story makes shocking reading for anyone who is under the misguided belief that such marriages do not regularly go on in Britain today.

For Khaleda, who was born in Britain and took GCSEs and A-levels at her British school in the hope of becoming a teacher in this country, was forced by her father to go to Pakistan and marry his cousin - a man 20 years her senior, who spoke no English and whom she had never even met.

And according to Khaleda - who today, having escaped "the marriage from hell," lives in hiding with her British partner, Phil - she is far from alone.

She says: "Virtually every Asian girl I have ever met has an arranged marriage and the vast majority of them are to their cousins.

"It is well known within the community that such marriages do produce deformed babies. No one talks about it, but it is one of the reasons why I found such a marriage to someone so closely related to myself to be so very repugnant.

"Just before I was forced to marry I heard of one of my cousins who'd been forced to marry her auntie's son.

"They had a baby daughter who died and when they asked doctors why, they were told it was because of inter-breeding. They were told the parents were too closely related to have a normal baby.

"And this was just one of many instances I would hear of. Anyone who thinks it doesn't happen is in denial. As I know from the most painful and personal experience, it is barbaric and unnatural.

"Marrying someone who is related to you - and being forced to do so - goes against all your natural urges. It is not racist to tell the truth. What I cannot understand is why it is allowed to go on in this country at all."
Khaleda went into hiding in London. Since then a friend of Phil's has been threatened by thugs, who said they'd put a gun to his head because he wouldn't reveal the couple's whereabouts.

Consequently, today, they live under police protection, their flat alarmed to alert the local police station.

"While I know I made the right decision to leave, I have lost all my confidence and I am frightened that a relative will see me and find out where I am, and there could be reprisals," she says.

"Sometimes I just sit and cry and I've since been prescribed anti-depressants by my GP.
"Even as a Muslim I have no idea why families want to intermarry like this. I can only think it is to keep wealth within the family. But unless this practice is outlawed, more young Muslim women like me will have their lives ruined."
"I desperately want a divorce but I am too frightened to make contact," she says. "And as for my career, well, I am too scared even to pursue my dream as a teacher."

And so another young Muslim woman's life is ruined by this outdated practice. Just how many more babies will have to be born deformed, or even dead, before it is finally stopped?

This one tickled me

4PM "Sounds of Silence"?

Coworker #1: I can't believe you're singing.
Coworker #2: I always sing.
Coworker #1: Yeah, but the owner of the company is standing right over there!
Coworker #2: Why? Does she have a request?

Avon, Massachusetts

Overheard by: Fae

via Overheard in the Office, Feb 12, 2008


Dolly Parton postpones tour, blames breasts

Dolly Parton's breasts may be two of the wonders of the entertainment world, but the country music icon says they are a pain in her back.

Parton, 62, said on Monday she would postpone her upcoming North American tour after doctors told her to take it easy for six to eight weeks to rest her sore back.

"Hey, you try wagging these puppies around a while and see if you don't have back problems," the folksy singer-songwriter said in a statement. ...

Mini-me at the gym

At just 2ft 9in, Indian muscleman Aditya 'Romeo' Dev is the world's smallest bodybuilder.

Pint-sized Romeo is well-known in his hometown of Phagwara, India - for his ability to lift 1.5kg dumbbells - despite his overall 9kg body weight.

Every day, crowds flock to the local gym to the see the mini muscleman in training.

Unlike many dwarfs, Romeo is well proportioned, with a head circumference of 15in and a chest measurement of 20in.

Romeo said: "I've been training as a bodybuilder for the last two years and by now I think I must be the strongest dwarf in the world.

"I have always been fit but since I started working out, I have become famous for my strength.

"My size has never stopped me. I train with dumbbells and do aerobics and dance. People are always pleased to see me. I have been invited on TV shows and dance on stage."

Illiteracy in our schools

Retired Teacher Reveals He Was Illiterate Until Age 48
John Corcoran graduated from college and taught high school for 17 years without being able to read, write or spell.

Corcoran's life of secrecy started at a young age. He said his teachers moved him up from grade to grade. Often placed in what he calls the "dumb row," the images of his ribulations in the classroom are still vividly clear.

"I can remember when I was 8 years old saying my prayers at night saying please [G]od tomorrow when it's my turn to read please let me read. You just pretend that you are invisible and when the teacher says, 'Johnnie read,' you just wait the teacher out because you know the teacher has to go away at some point," said Corcoran.

Corcoran eventually started acting up to hide his illiteracy. From fifth through seventh grade he was expelled, suspended and spent most of his days at the principal's office.


"My parents came to school and it no longer was a problem for me reading because this boy Johnnie the -- native alien I call him -- he didn't have a reading problem as far as the teachers were concerned. He had an emotional problem. He had a psychological problem. He had a behavioral problem," said Corcoran.

Corcoran later attended Palo Verde High School in Blythe, Calif. He cheated his way through high school, receiving his diploma in June 1956.


He stole tests and pursuaded friends to complete his assignments. Corcoran earned an athletic scholarship to Texas Western College. He said his cheating intensified, claiming he cheated in every class.

"I passed a bluebook out the window to a friend I painstakingly copied four essay questions off the board in U.S. government class that was required, and hoped my friend would get it back to me with the right answers," Corcoran said.

In 1961, Corcoran graduated with a bachelor's degree in education, while still illiterate he contends. He then went on to become a teacher during a teacher shortage.


"What I did was I created an oral and visual environment. There wasn't the written word in there. I always had two or three teacher's assistants in each class to do board work or read the bulletin," said Corcoran.

In retrospect, Corcoran said, his deceit took him a long time to accept. "As a teacher it really made me sick to think that I was a teacher who couldn't read. It is embarrassing for me, and it's embarrassing for this nation and it's embarrassing for schools that we're failing to teach our children how to read, write and spell!"

While still teaching, Corcoran dabbled in real estate. He was granted a leave of absence, eventually becoming a successful real estate developer.

It wasn't until he was 48 years old that he gave reading and writing another chance. He drove to an inconspicuous office with a sign he couldn't read. He studied and worked with a tutor at the Literacy Center of Carlsbad. Assigned to a 65-year-old volunteer tutor, Eleanor Condit, he was able to read at a sixth-grade level within a year.

How is this even possible?! How were there no teachers that made him read or realized that he couldn't? How were there no tests with essay questions in an environment where he couldn't cheat? How could he grade papers and administer tests? How can find out about real estate and what's for sale without reading? How could he drive and find places if he couldn't read signs? How could he not know how to read at even a kindergarten level just by virtue of being around written words all the time? HOW?!?!?!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Pig hearted

The St Valentine's Day porker: Piglet born with heart-shaped spots

A cute little piglet born with heart-shaped markings on his side is the centre of attention as lovers gear up for Valentine's Day this week.

The 10-day-old Gloucester Old Spot piglet christened Valentine - what else? - is one of a litter of seven born at Byford's Farm in Taynton, near Newent, Glos.

Related post: Awwwwwwwww!!! (The puppy with the heart spot)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Earth to Speaker Pelosi

Can anyone make sense of Nancy Pelosi's ramble (in bold)?

Pelosi calls Iraq a 'failure'
Pelosi’s comment came during a discussion of her call for “the redeployment of our troops out of Iraq.”

Anchor Wolf Blitzer asked: “Are you not worried, though, that all the gains that have been achieved over the past year might be lost?”

“There haven't been gains, Wolf,” the speaker replied. “The gains have not produced the desired effect, which is the reconciliation of Iraq. This is a failure. This is a failure. The troops have succeeded, God bless them. We owe them the greatest debt of gratitude for their sacrifice, their patriotism, and for their courage and to their families as well. ...

So she's saying: There haven't been gains, but the gains (of which there are none) have not produced the desired effect. The gains (which may or may not have happened, but certainly have not produced the desired effect) are a failure, but the troops have succeeded in this failure to get gains that haven't produced the desired effect. WHAT?!?!?!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Full-Birth Abortion in GB

66 babies in a year left to die after NHS abortions that go wrong

Rather than dying at birth as was intended, they were able to breathe unaided. About half were alive for an hour, while one survived ten hours.

The figures are the first to give a national picture of the number of babies who survive abortion but are left to die. [Thank goodness this is illegal in America with the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act ]

...The report said the terminations were "predominantly on account of congenital anomalies", which may be life-threatening but which can also include problems such as cleft palate and club feet. [i.e. non-life threatening, can be fixed through surgery]

...Guidance from the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists recommends babies over 22 weeks which survive abortion should have their hearts stopped by lethal injection but this can be a difficult procedure for doctors. [so babies are treated like death row inmates, only worse]

...The findings follow evidence to MPs this week that foetuses feel pain before 24 weeks.... [!]

Couple's despair after daughter survives abortion at five months

A baby born alive after a botched abortion at 21 weeks is among the worst cases reported in the UK.

The little girl, who had Down's Syndrome, lived for three hours after being delivered.

Her parents claim they were "coerced" into a termination by staff at Macclesfield District General Hospital. [It is all too common for doctors to encourage abortion for babies with even minor problems]

They were later told that their baby had not "really" been alive, even though she was clearly breathing. [For everything that's made of the "choice between a woman and her doctor," doctors are not giving women full scientific information about the development of their babies in the womb and the effects of abortion]

...The 44-year-old mother said: "If I had been given any idea that the baby would be born alive after an abortion I would never have gone through with it. They coerced me. [It is not a true "choice" if complete information is not given]

"I have seen how society treats children with disabilities and it frightened me to bring another special needs child into the world, but somehow we would have coped with it."

Two days before the abortion in March 2004, the woman was given tablets which she was told would kill the baby in the womb.

But to their distress the baby was still clearly moving.

They went back to hospital and were assured that the baby would die during labour.

Soon after birth, however, both parents saw it gasping for air.

Friday, February 08, 2008

The road to environmental hell is paved with good intentions

Biofuels Deemed a Greenhouse Threat

Almost all biofuels used today cause more greenhouse gas emissions than conventional fuels if the full emissions costs of producing these “green” fuels are taken into account, two studies being published Thursday have concluded.

The benefits of biofuels have come under increasing attack in recent months, as scientists took a closer look at the global environmental cost of their production. These latest studies, published in the prestigious journal Science, are likely to add to the controversy.

These studies for the first time take a detailed, comprehensive look at the emissions effects of the huge amount of natural land that is being converted to cropland globally to support biofuels development.

The destruction of natural ecosystems — whether rain forest in the tropics or grasslands in South America — not only releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere when they are burned and plowed, but also deprives the planet of natural sponges to absorb carbon emissions. Cropland also absorbs far less carbon than the rain forests or even scrubland that it replaces.

Together the two studies offer sweeping conclusions: It does not matter if it is rain forest or scrubland that is cleared, the greenhouse gas contribution is significant. More important, they discovered that, taken globally, the production of almost all biofuels resulted, directly or indirectly, intentionally or not, in new lands being cleared, either for food or fuel.