Pope John Paul II isn't doing so well and has been given last rites.
I find that I can't actually pray for him to get better but rather just that God's will be done.
Mitch Hedberg, a St. Paul native whose space-case persona was as much part of his soul as it was his act, died early Wednesday morning in a New Jersey hotel room. He was 37. A medical examiner hasn't issued findings, but Hedberg's family is told he suffered a heart attack.
He was a damn funny guy.
"I like an escalator, because an escalator can never break. It can only become stairs. You'll never see an 'Escalator Out of Order' sign, only 'Escalator Temporarily Stairs. Sorry for the convenience.'"
"I wrote a letter to my dad - I wrote, 'I really enjoy being here,' but I accidentally wrote rarely instead of really. But I still wanted to use it so i crossed it out and wrote, 'I rarely drive steamboats, dad - there's a lot of shit you don't know about me. Quit trying to act like I'm a steamboat operator.' This letter took a harsh turn right away...
...and then at the end of the letter I like to write "P.S. - this is what part of the alphabet would look like if Q and R were eliminated."
"I got in an argument with a girlfriend inside of a tent. That's a bad place for an argument, because then I tried to walk out, and had to slam the flap. How are you supposed to express your anger in this situation? Zip it up real quick?"
"I like vending machines, because snacks are better when they fall. If I buy a candy bar at the store oftentimes I will drop it, so that is achieves its maximum flavor potential."
"I bought a doughnut and they gave me a receipt for the doughtnut...I don't need a receipt for the doughnut - I give you money and you give me the doughnut, end of transaction. We don't need to bring ink and paper into this. I can't imagine a scenario that I would have to prove that I bought a doughnut. To some skeptical friend, Don't even act like I didn't buy a doughnut, I've got the documentation right here..."
"This shirt is dry clean only. Which means...it's dirty."
"I was at this casino minding my own business, and this guy came up to me and said, 'You're gonna have to move, you're blocking a fire exit.' As though if there was a fire, I wasn't gonna run. If you're flammible and have legs, you are never blocking a fire exit."
The Christian Science Monitor has an article on Zero Tolerance policies and how the tide is turning against them.
Texas - one of the nation's toughest-minded states when it comes to crime and discipline - is now at the forefront of a small but growing movement to relax zero-tolerance policies enacted by states in the 1990s.Ahhh... can you imagine a world where common sense ruled? Unfortunately, (and I think I'm paraphrasing someone here but I have no clue who) those who understand the intent of the rules don't end up becoming bureaucrats.
More than a dozen bills that try to bring a less rigid approach to school discipline have been introduced in the Texas legislature this session, including one that requires school officials to consider a student's intent. The bill is currently moving through the House of Representatives.
"We have seen a number of states toy with the idea of scaling back or trying to make the process of school discipline more rational," says Bob Schwartz, executive director of the Juvenile Law Center in Philadelphia. "But Texas is ahead of the curve at this point."
Indiana, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania are also weighing the issue at the legislative level this year, with the introduction of several bills aimed at softening strict school-discipline policies.
"Just talking about it suggests that, if not a pendulum swing, a pendulum creep is in play," says Mr. Schwartz, though he cautions that many states have given their school districts discretion when it comes to discipline, making the issue hard to legislate.
It's particularly difficult to talk about relaxing discipline right now, a week after the school shooting on Minnesota's Red Lake reservation. But even the Red Lake school district Superintendent Stuart Desjarlait has admitted that zero- tolerance policies can't keep kids safe if a student is motivated to kill.
"It goes to show that if something is going to happen, it's going to happen - no matter what you do," he said at a news conference last week. Red Lake High School was equipped with a metal detector, security cameras, and guards.
Terri Schiavo died today, 13 days after having her feeding tube removed.
I wonder how much longer the media circus lasts.
|UC's new athletic logo wasn't supposed to be released until June 1st in conjunction with the move into the Big East Conference. Instead it managed to find its way out into the wild on T-shirts at area Krogers.|
My first impression... I don't like it. But I'll admit that it's grown on me a bit in the small time since I first saw it, so who knows what I'll think with a little time.
KOFI ANNAN, the United Nations secretary-general, is said to be struggling with depression and considering his future. Colleagues have reported concerns about Annan ahead of an official report this week that will examine his son Kojo’s connection to the controversial Iraqi oil for food scheme.
Depending on the findings of the report, by a team led by the former US Federal Reserve chairman Paul Volcker, Annan may have to choose between the secretary-generalship and loyalty to his son.
American congressional critics of the UN are already pressing him to resign over the mismanagement of the oil for food programme, and even his supporters have been dismayed by the scandals on his watch, including the sexual abuse of children by UN peacekeepers in Congo.
One close observer at the UN said Annan’s moods were like a "sine curve" and that he appeared near the bottom of the trough.
...I've got no problem with light-to-no posting when a blog author just doesn't have anything to talk about, but when you write a tech blog as part of your job and the launch of the PSP goes totally unnoticed because you haven't posted in 18 days then there's a problem.
...especially when the only thing people seem to be talking about is something your determined not to talk about. It's even cutting into my media consumption options, I'm not going to sit and listen to endless cries of "sanctity of life" this and "persistant vegitative state" that and the absurdly hypocritical shrieks of "exploitation!" coming from the media.
The Fantasy Draft has never been one of my strong suits. We'll see how this goes...
C J. Varitek (Bos - C)
1B D. Ortiz (Bos - 1B)
2B J. Kent (LAD - 2B)
3B C. Blake (Cle - 3B)
SS M. Tejada (Bal - SS)
IF A. Dunn (Cin - 1B,OF)
OF M. Ordóñez (Det - OF)
OF A. Jones (Atl - OF)
OF E. Byrnes (Oak - OF)
Util K. Greene (SD - SS)
BN L. Overbay (Mil - 1B)
BN M. Cuddyer (Min - 1B,2B,3B,OF)
BN M. Lieberthal (Phi - C)
SP M. Prior (ChC - SP)
SP C. Zambrano (ChC - SP)
RP M. Rivera (NYY - RP)
RP D. Graves (Cin - RP)
P J. Lieber (Phi - SP)
P J. Westbrook (Cle - SP)
P W. Williams (SD - SP)
BN Ja. Wright (NYY - SP)
BN D. Wells (Bos - SP)
The AP has a story in which a little less than a third of Hall of Fame voters were polled and asked whether they'd vote Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire into the Hall. Of those who showed an inclination one way or the other McGwire only had 55.6% support while Bonds had 80.8% support.
Dayton Daily News Reds beat writer Hal McCoy's thoughts:
"Right now I'm sort of sitting on the fence, but leaning toward not voting for McGwire or Bonds because they cheated," said Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News, himself a member of the Hall's writers' wing.
"McGwire had the opportunity to say something, but didn't. To me, that's sort of like pleading the Fifth Amendment and not denying he did it," he said.
The Dayton Warbirds are switching leagues (from the United Indoor Football Association to the National Indoor Football League) a week after they were supposed to have played their first game.
The Dayton Warbirds switched leagues Thursday, going from the United Indoor Football Association to the National Indoor Football League. The team still plans to make its debut April 2 against an opponent yet to be named.
Shortly after noon, the Nebraska-based UIFA issued a press release announcing the Warbirds' season had been suspended Wednesday in a vote of the league's directors. No reason was given. Dayton's first home game had been postponed March 17 because of safety concerns in the Ervin J. Nutter Center.
Diversity University Monochromatic Institute Lots of Race/Class Interaction Little Race/Class Interaction Diverse Student Population Homogeneous Student Population Students Ignore God on a Regular Basis Students Pray on a Regular Basis Gay Community Accepted Alternative Lifestyles Not An Alternative
Can somebody explain how students regularly ignoring God is a sign of diversity? Diversity is having a bunch of people worshipping or choosing not to worship however they wish, not having everybody ignore God. A campus where God is ignored is just as "monochromatic" as one where everybody worships the same god.
This made my day when I heard it last night.
Coming off knee surgery and caught up in baseball's steroids scandal, Barry Bonds said he may not play at all this season -- despite standing on the doorstep of the sport's most hallowed record.
The San Francisco Giants slugger also said he was physically and mentally "done," and blamed the media for at least part of his troubles.
Bonds, leaning his head on a crutch and repeatedly saying he was tired, spoke after a 11/2-hour session with Giants trainer Stan Conte.
"Right now I'm just going to try to rehab myself to get back to, I don't know, hopefully next season, hopefully the middle of the season," Bonds said. "I don't know. Right now I'm just going to take things slow.
"I'm 40 years old, not 20, 30."
Why would Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice discuss North Korea's nuclear weapons program with China, when it has the third-greatest number of nuclear weapons behind the United States and Russia?Because the number of nuclear weapons which China owns has nothing to do with North Korea's nuclear weapons program. China holds influence over North Korea and has reason to not want a mad dictator with nuclear weapons next door.
The whole thing just makes me sad.
Congressman Rob Portman will join President Bush's cabinet as U.S. trade representative.
I doubt anybody's all that surprised. The conventional wisdom for quite some time has been that Bush and Portman were close enough that Portman would be appointed to something sooner or later.
Oh look, it's politicians grasping for the limelight.
Steroids are a problem for Baseball but there's really no reason Congress should be involved. This is between Baseball, the players and the fans.
This post is originating from my new cell phone. Gotta say I'm really enjoying it so far.
Now there are cell phones designed specifically for 8-12 year olds.
There are reports of upwards of 1.5 million people protesting in Beirut today against Syria's presence and influence in Lebanon.
Much more here.
On Friday I started the switch from Cincinnati Bell Wireless to T-Mobile. I can't complain about CBW's service or coverage but I was tired of having to pay full price whenever I wanted to upgrade my phone and how, because they're not a national provider, the only place I could get ringtones and the like was right from CBW. Plus the plan I had (their cheapest) was much more than I needed. Last month was an unusually heavy month for me cell-minute-usage-wise and still the total of all my minutes was less than a quarter of my available peak minutes. T-Mobile had a plan that fit my needs much better so that once I've added on several features that I didn't have with CBW (like internet access on my phone) I'll still be paying less per month.
Plus I couldn't pass up their deal on what I consider to be a pretty cool little camera phone. In the store the Samsung e315 is $199.99, online it's free. At CBW they've only got one phone under $99.99 and a mere 2 flip phones.
I'm probably giving up some coverage area in switching away from CBW but the other advantages were just irresistible. The phone's supposed to arrive by FedEx Wednesday and the number port's scheduled for Thursday.
U.S. media coverage of last year's election was three times more likely to be negative toward President Bush than Democratic challenger John Kerry, according to a study released Monday.
The annual report by a press watchdog that is affiliated with Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism said that 36 percent of stories about Bush were negative compared to 12 percent about Kerry, a Massachusetts senator.
Only 20 percent were positive toward Bush compared to 30 percent of stories about Kerry that were positive, according to the report by the Project for Excellence in Journalism.
The study looked at 16 newspapers of varying size across the country, four nightly newscasts, three network morning news shows, nine cable programs and nine Web sites through the course of 2004.
Examining the public perception that coverage of the war in Iraq was decidedly negative, it found evidence did not support that conclusion. The majority of stories had no decided tone, 25 percent were negative and 20 percent were positive, it said.
The leader of the "Lebanese intifada", Walid Jumblatt, on what the events in Iraq mean to Lebanon and the rest of the Middle East:
"It's strange for me to say it, but this process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq," explains Jumblatt. "I was cynical about Iraq. But when I saw the Iraqi people voting three weeks ago, 8 million of them, it was the start of a new Arab world." Jumblatt says this spark of democratic revolt is spreading. "The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it."
Kim Mullen of Huber Heights was voted out on Survivor last night. She's a Wright State grad student and played the game horribly. It just didn't seem to occur to her that sitting on her ass all day while everybody else around her worked was going to lead to an early exit. That may be excusable at first, but when you know damn well that you're the most likely person to be voted off next and you don't even make an effort... simply inexcusable.
I defy you not to admire these men who are choosing to go back into combat even after having lost a leg.
They've issued a fatwa against bin Laden.
Spain's Islamic Commission, which groups the nation's Muslim community, said it was issuing a fatwa against Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden,Finally someone's heeding the call for Western Muslims clerics to make it clear that they reject terrorism.
'We are going to issue a fatwa (religious decree) against Bin Laden this afternoon,' Mansour Escudero, who leads the Federation of Islamic religious entities (Feeri) and co-secretary general of the Spanish governmenmt-created Commission told AFP.
The Commission invited Spanish-based imams to condemn terrorism at Friday prayers, when the whole country will be remembering the 191 people who were killed in the train blasts and the 1,900 injured a year ago.
The attacks have been blamed on mainly Moroccan Islamic extremists loyal to Bin Laden.
'We have called on imams to make a formal declaration condemning terrorism and for a special prayer for all the victims of terrorism,' Escudero said.
This from WCPO's John Popovich:
The Enquirer can say that TV stations overreact to bad weather, but today, the paper has overreacted big time to this story. The banner headline on the front page reads.. "REDS UP FOR SALE". Inside, the headline is "Lindner loyal to keeping the Reds in Cincinnati". Then there's the lead editorial.."Make Sure our Reds stay here". Here's how it concludes..."This is the time for every fan, every politician, every child who ever skipped school to watch the Reds on Opening Day to let baseball know that this team must stay in this town. Not just for this season; not just for the life of the lease; but for the next generation and all the ones after that. The Reds belong in Cincinnati forever.Just imagine the Enquirer's reaction if there were actually the chance that the sale would have slightest effect. They'd have a coronary.
Opening Day sold out in 12 minutes....isn't that proof enough?
Every time somebody thinks about selling a portion of the Reds, there's panic that the team is going to move out of town. It's pure garbage! When the Expos went looking for new location, who was out there? There was Norfolk that has a minor league ballpark and Washington which changed its mind a couple of times. No established team is going to move, especially one with a new stadium and a long term lease. If teams were so free to move, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago White Sox, Minnesota would have moved a long time ago. Every time the Indians got new ownership, there was talk of a move. That's because they stunk on the field and their stadium was run down.
Why do you think they made the movie "Major League"? There was some truth in that movie. They never moved.
Senator John Cornyn takes apart the NY Times' hypocritical position on the filibuster.
To the Editor:
"The Senate on the Brink" (editorial, March 6) supports the "historic role of the filibuster," which is a curious position for a newspaper that 10 years ago said filibusters were "the tool of the sore loser" and should be eliminated ("Time to Retire the Filibuster," editorial, Jan. 1, 1995).
...[Surely] all Americans can agree that the rules for confirming judges should be the same regardless of which party has a majority.
Now you praise the filibuster as a "time-honored Senate procedure." In 1995, when Bill Clinton was president, you called it "an archaic rule that frustrates democracy and serves no useful purpose."
You disparage the Republicans' view that 51 votes should be enough for judicial confirmation. Yet the 51-vote rule is a consistent Senate tradition. By calling for an end to filibusters, the Senate is simply contemplating restoring its traditions by traditional methods you disparage as "nuclear," even though they were once endorsed by such leading Democrats as Senators Edward M. Kennedy, Charles E. Schumer and Robert C. Byrd.
It seems rather desperate when there's no reason at all for it.
An Ohio law scheduled to go into effect May 2nd would require every Ohioan who sells on eBay to become a licensed auctioneer. That would require $200, posting a $50,000 bond, a one-year apprenticeship to an auctioneer and calling bids in 12 auctions and failure to do so could lead to a $1,000 fine and 90 days in jail.
The primary author, Larry Mumper, says the law will be changed to exempt individuals.
Let's assume for a second that eBay sellers from Ohio need to be regulated. To think that the proper way to do that is to make them licensed auctioneers shows a profound lack of understanding of what eBay is. There is really pretty much nothing a "real world" auctioneer could teach that would be of much use on eBay. eBay itself does what the auctioneer would do. If they really feel they need to regulate these people then it needs to be as if they're a small business, not as if they're auctioneers.
...and there are still between 150,000 and 250,000 protestors on the streets of Lebanon after Syria said they would pull their troops back, but not all the way out of Lebanon.
How am I supposed to come up with stuff to blog about when Reynolds is already saying everything that needs to be said about the Giuliana Sgrena situation?
The car carrying the recently freed hostage/reporter for an Italian communist paper was shot at by US troops as it approached the Baghdad Airport. US troops say the car was travelling towards the checkpoint at speed and ignored their warnings so they had to open fire. Sgrena claims... a lot of things. They were driving haphazardly enough that just before they had almost lost control of the car... they weren't speeding towards a checkpoint... there was no checkpoint... all she remembers is fire... they were shot at by a tank... they were specifically targeted because the US didn't like that Italy had paid the ransom...
Her claims that they weren't speeding towards a checkpoint and that they were purposefully targeted are... quite worthy of doubt to say the least. Not that that will stop the anti-Americans from using the incident to get people worked up.
As you've probably noticed, there have been several Alan Greenspan-related posts on the main page in just the past day or so. In one of those threads, blogswarmer Bob Brigham suggested that we "unleash the blogosphere" on Greenspan. It's a brilliant idea - no one is more worthy of having a halo-ectomy than St. Alan - so let's have at it...Whah?! Ayn Rand? They think they're going to take down Alan Greenspan through Ayn Rand? Let me repeat that one more time just so we're clear... Ayn... RAND!
And for those of you who want to really get down & dirty in the trenches, we can turn this into a one-degree-of-separation venture. That is, if you can find similar material for anyone who is closely linked to Greenspan, that's fair game, too. Good examples would be Greenie's idol, the nutbag "objectivist" Ayn Rand, and Andrea Mitchell, his NBC reporter wife. (An aside: We can debate the merits of this approach all you like, but suffice it to say, there is no question that Republicans do the same crap to us all the time. If you still want to play by the Marquess of Queensberry rules, fine - but I've moved on to brass knuckles.)
And, to make it amply clear, this is emphatically not a call for a "smear" campaign. This is a call to reveal the truth about Alan Greenspan (and his associates).
Gee, with sound tactics like these I can't imagine why the Left's highest profile takedown is a gay prostitute wannabe reporter.
They need to rethink going back to those Marquis of Queensberry rules. Taking mild doses of physic to work on their bowels and stripping naked and letting two men rub them gently with soft Turkish towels is actually probably higher up on the list of plausible ways to get to Alan Greenspan than going through Ayn Rand is.
You can count me as a supporter of the Fair Tax. It would eliminate the current income tax system and instead charge a national sales tax. Unlike most sales taxes however, this is a progressive tax system. Every month everyone would get a rebate (or prebate) from the government that would cover what they are expected to pay in taxes on the necessities. Thus someone who makes only enough to pay for the necessities will pay no taxes at all. Those who make less will have a negative effective tax rate. As a person makes more they'll have a higher effective tax rate until the wealthiest are essentially paying the full 23% rate. A family of four making $25,000 would pay 0%. It would be 12% at $50,000, 17% at $100,000 and -23% at $12,500.
This system is revenue neutral, will encourage saving, will tax the black market and virtually eliminate tax cheats, will help our businesses be more competitive on the world stage and vastly simplify a confusing tax system bloated with loopholes and exceptions.
The following are depressing words to wake up to on the news: "We're going to be looking at her release from prison all day long."
Saudi Arabia has taken a firm stance with Syria, telling its president to begin fully removing his troops from Lebanon in accordance with a United Nations resolution, or Saudi-Syrian relations will suffer.
A Saudi official said Crown Prince Abdullah delivered the warning Thursday during a meeting in Riyadh with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
I don't see how you can look at what's going on in Lebanon and not feel happy for these people and good about what they're doing. They are throwing off their yokes and making a stand for their right to self-determination and self-governance.