It is done! It only took me a day. Woo Hoo! I'm getting better at this (and don't say that it must have been an easier template :-). So, go check out the new and improved Life Under the Sun (my husband says it looks the same).
Friday, June 30, 2006
I was thinking that traffic might be light this weekend because of July 4th but the last time I said that I had an increase in traffic. So, I'm not saying that posting might be light but it's a very distinct possibility.
I do have an idea for a post for the Blogging Chick Carnival that I might do here instead of over at Life Under the Sun. I'm still thinking about what I want to say and the redesign of Life Under the Sun is taking too much time. For some reason the new template doesn't like my copyright notice. Very annoying. And I've got to get it working because I have to protect my content. Anyway, all that to say you might want to check in this weekend to see what I come up with :-) or not it's up to you.
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 06:22:00 PM
I'm busy working on the template for Life Under the Sun. It is long and tedious work. I'm thankful for free templates but when you use them you have to get used to what the author did and why they did it. It would terrify me to start from scratch. I like doing it though because then I have control over what my blogs look like.
I found the template here. I'm working with K2.
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 04:25:00 PM
What happened? I thought this issue was dead? I guess not:
The House, voting 232-187, yesterday approved a bill to end a 25-year-old moratorium on offshore oil and gas drilling. The vote came even after the White House surprised the bill's supporters by estimating that the measure's royalty terms would divert "several hundred billion dollars" away from the federal treasury over the next 60 years.This seems pretty reasonable, it allows the states to have their say but it also makes them open up their decision for debate which I think is healthy and a good idea. Let them explain to the voters why they won't allow the oil companies to provide them with more oil.
Amid high oil and gas prices, the idea of allowing more offshore oil and gas exploration on the Outer Continental Shelf had widespread support in the House. The measure would let firms drill anywhere within 50 miles of U.S. coastlines, while forcing states that want to keep drilling 100 miles off their own shores to pass legislation every five years. States could also ask the federal government to allow drilling closer.
Of course this has to face the Senate where the egomaniacs, who have a presidential complex (they want to save the republic from the evils of ... fill in the blank) will try to block it:
Unlike the House bill, which would open up all U.S. coasts to exploration, the Senate version, which supporters hope will be voted on next month, would open up only 8 million acres in the eastern Gulf of Mexico.Senator you are only one of a hundred, remember that.
Sources said that Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.), like most Florida lawmakers a longtime foe of offshore drilling, was also close to agreeing to the Senate compromise.
Stumbling blocks remain. Florida's other senator, Bill Nelson (D), issued a statement last night threatening to block any measure resembling the one approved by the House. "Drilling will destroy the unique environments that are the backbone of the tourism-driven economies of our nation's first- and fourth-largest states," Nelson said.
I'm not sure I like the bribery aspect of this bill but if it means more oil, so be it.
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 11:52:00 AM
23% scored higher (more nerdy), and What does this mean? Your nerdiness is:
Normally I don't like posting the results from two of these quizzes in the same week but I couldn't resist. I actually thought I would score lower than this because I'm not that knowledgeable about science but I guess true nerdiness shines through. Here is an analysis of my results:
77% scored lower (less nerdy).
Mid-Level Nerd. Wow, it takes a lot of hard nerdy practice to reach this level.
23% scored higher (more nerdy), and
What does this mean? Your nerdiness is:
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 11:36:00 AM
The photo hunt this week is automoblies. I don't have pictures of cars, I spend all my time making sure cars are not in my picture when I take it. Even if I went out and took a picture of a random car, so what? What would make that interesting? And I'm kicking myself because there was a hotdog truck at the hotel when we were in DC. Bummer.
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 10:19:00 AM
Imagine being only thirty days away from finishing a huge project with many custom features and then have it all be destroyed by fire:
Tuesday night, the house was struck by lightning. It had been under construction for more than two years and was within 30 days of completion. There was no furniture inside, but the fire caused extensive structural damage.Read the rest here.
"It's devastating just to see all that much work and heart and soul go into a project and have it come to this point," George said.
George is the builder and is friends with the owner. He said the house had marble floors, custom-made cabinetry and extensive, and very expensive, plaster work throughout all the walls and ceilings.
"They handmade the molds and did a phenomenal job of recreating that old European ornate look," George said.
Now it's looking like the French chateau-style home may have to be demolished and started from scratch. The owner of the home is Brett Moscovitz. He runs a surveying and mapping corporation in Winter Park.
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 08:35:00 AM
I was over at Oh, the Joys which is a funny Mommy blog and I noticed that she had a beautiful picture of my favorite kind of Ben and Jerry ice cream and I wanted some so badly, oh I was sooo going to buy that when I went to the store today. But then, I got a request to join the Blogging Chicks blogroll and when I went to check out the blog I saw she had this awful post, Top Ten Foods You Should Never Eat and though the ice cream wasn't on the list, I knew it would be up there with the rest of the items on the list. She bummed me out for the rest of the day.
And my daughters were bummed when I told them that the Frappuccino they always ask me for and I very rarely let them have (it's like five bucks or something, are you kidding me?) - except for when we went to DC and there was a Starbucks on every corner - was 770 calories! Samantha said, "I would never drink one of those again in a hundred years. At least I didn't drink the whole thing." (Rationalizing at ten, what a proud moment for a Momma.)
Posted by michele at 6/30/2006 12:02:00 AM
Thursday, June 29, 2006
From Justice Thomas' dissent:
Based on the foregoing, the President's judgment-that the present conflict substantially predates the AUMF, extending at least as far back as al Qaeda's 1996 declaration of war on our Nation, and that the theater of war extends at least as far as the localities of al Qaeda's principal bases of operations-is beyond judicial reproach. And the plurality's unsupportable contrary determination merely confirms that "the Judiciary has neither aptitude, facilities nor responsibility" for making military or foreign affairs judgments.You better believe they don't! That is the sole job of the president, no where in the constitution does it say that Congress or the courts have a right to share that power with the president. That is the way the founders wanted it and no president has ever shared power in that manner. We are at war and the courts have no right to try the detainees. This is not their jurisdiction.
Read more here.
Stop the ACLU has a great roundup of reactions to the news.
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 09:47:00 PM
Go check out Monty Python toys. Imagine giving them to your kids!! I want the Black Knight :-) and the Spanish Inquisitor ("Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!")
(Link via Idle Thoughts and Random Links)
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 07:20:00 PM
Well, as you can see from the results, I'm the real deal. NJ might not be the prettiest state in the union or filled with the best drivers in the world or smell the sweetest and we have some of the worst politicians in the country but I like it here and wouldn't want to live anyplace else! I would miss bagels and cream cheese, the thousands of Dunkin Donuts, the huge grocery store that is five minutes from my house, five malls within driving distance, a Home Depot and another grocery store within 10 minutes of my house, easy access to NY city and Philadelphia, the Jersey shore, and the many other things that make New Jersey the best place to live if you've got the money to live here :-).
(Link via Teresa's 2¢ Worth Blog)
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 05:11:00 PM
So, I have to take my kids to the mall so that we can meet my dad. My parent live an hour away and we meet at a mall that is half an hour from each of us. The girls wanted to eat at the mall so I had to get out of here quickly. I finished posting the thing I did on the stupid Supreme Court decision and sent code to one of the Blogging Chicks. I thought, "I should check that post and make sure it published ok." So I go to my blog and to my shock found out that stupid blogger published my article 3 times. What is up with that? And then I only had the opportunity to delete one of them before I had to go. So, now my blog was sitting here looking like I'm some kind of idiot with two posts.
BTW, I'm not in a good mood, can you tell? Stupid, swear word, swear word Supreme Court is going to get us all killed. I have no intention of wearing a burka!
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 03:42:00 PM
How can the Geneva Conventions apply to these detainees?
This is just nuts! We are at war and these people don't understand that and they are doing exactly what the terrorists knew they would. They knew our justice system could be turned in their favor and they were right!!!!!
The Supreme Court today delivered a stunning rebuke to the Bush administration over its plans to try Guantanamo detainees before military commissions, ruling that the commissions are unconstitutional.
In a 5-3 decision, the court said the trials were not authorized under U.S. law or the Geneva Conventions. Justice John Paul Stevens wrote the opinion in the case, called Hamdan v. Rumsfeld. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. recused himself from the case.The ruling, which overturned a federal appeals court decision in which Roberts had participated, represented a defeat for President Bush, who had ordered military trials for detainees at the Guantanamo Bay naval base. About 450 detainees captured in the war on terrorism are currently held at the U.S. naval base in Cuba.
The case of Salim Ahmed Hamdan, a 36-year-old Yemeni with links to al-Qaeda, was considered a key test of the judiciary's power during wartime and carried the potential to make a lasting impact on American law. It challenged the very legality of the military commissions established by President Bush to try terrorism suspects.
And then there's this:
The authority of the executive to lock up individuals under claims of wartime power, without benefit of traditional protections such as a jury trial, the right to cross-examine one's accusers and the right to judicial appeal.What protections, they're terrorists! They're not protected by our constitution or the Geneva Conventions. They are not part of any government. Why don't we just make up law as we go, guys.
The applicability of international treaties -- specifically the Geneva Conventions on the treatment of prisoners of war -- to the government's treatment of those it deems "enemy combatants."
Read the rest here, especially about the case that this opinion is based on.
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 11:08:00 AM
The Christian Carnival is up and I'm not part of it! Bummer. My head isn't in the game for Bible study. I'm a lazy thinker and right now I'm very flabby. I need to get my mind off the
coach couch and doing mental exercises. I think I need to read a theology book instead of a murder mystery (or the Internet) today.
Updated to add: No, I didn't have my mind on a coach!! Oh my gosh!!! What an idiot.
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 10:26:00 AM
A woman live-blogged the delivery at home of her 8th child! Wow! How incredible is that? First of all just to give birth at home, I couldn't do that but then to blog about it? Just wow!
Hey guys! Top that! Nothing you can do could equal this type of blogging, unless someone wants to live-blog passing a kidney stone (hehe).
(Link via Rocks in the Dryer)
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 09:18:00 AM
One of my commenters, Tim, left a link to a site that has Math art, photographs of equation. He said that he would buy one of these and that maybe why people are buying pictures with numbers on them (I posted about it here). Math people love numbers.
Well, I think that math equation art is much better than just a number painted on a canvas because it's much more elegant. Even I would be tempted to buy equation art, even though I hate math.
Maybe the buyers are math people, maybe they are people who like to be a part of a trend, maybe they are people who think they're making an investment, whatever. The question remains, is it art?
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 08:18:00 AM
I continue to be impressed with the military maneuvering of Israel, they know who to target to get their way. For years they've take out the leaders of Hamas and now they want their soldier back so they are targeting the Syrian president:
Israeli warplanes buzzed the summer residence of Syrian President Bashar Assad early Wednesday, military officials said, in a message aimed at pressuring the Syrian leader to win the release of a captured Israeli soldier.Why waste your time with the terrorists when you can go to the top.
The officials said Assad was targeted because of the "direct link" between Syria and Hamas, the Palestinian militant group holding Cpl. Gilad Shalit, 19, in the Gaza Strip. Syria hosts Khaled Meshaal, Hamas' exiled supreme leader.
Read the rest here.
(Link via Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 12:57:00 AM
I hope that this turns out not to be true:
A spokesman for gunmen in the Gaza Strip said they had fired a rocket tipped with a chemical warhead at Israel early on Thursday.(Link via Drudge Report)
An Israeli military spokeswoman said the army had not detected that any such rocket was fired, nor was there any report of such a weapon hitting Israel.
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 12:45:00 AM
Sarah and Samantha helped me write some more haikus while we were waiting for Doug to join us at the restaurant:
Driving the turnpike
Watch there's a tractor trailer
Driving to Newark
Trying to catch an airplane
Eww, what is that smell?
In my little car
Driving fast late for my class
Man! Tailgating trucks
Posted by michele at 6/29/2006 12:16:00 AM
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
We went out to dinner at Famous Dave's Bar-B-Que and then we went to the movies. Doug took Samantha to see Cars and Sarah and I went to see Superman Returns. I wanted to see "Cars" but Doug had promised Samantha that he would take her (so it was going to be a Daddy/Samantha thing) and Sarah didn't want to see it so I took her to see "Superman Returns."
I had absolutely no desire to see the movie. I had seen the original Superman movies and I've even watched the original series, so I wasn't interested in a remake but fortunately this wasn't a remake. I had not idea what to expect because I hadn't read the reviews (just the media coverage), the only thing I knew was that Superman wasn't fighting for the American way anymore.
It was a surprisingly good movie. I really enjoyed it, the special effects were pretty good, and the acting was OK. The plot was pretty good but the pace was a little slow in the beginning. The first part of the movie could have been cut from the film and it wouldn't have been missed.
The director used way too many closeups for dramatic effect (especially in the beginning) and it was very annoying. Trying to create drama with extreme closeups and plodding music isn't very effective and can put the audience to sleep. Fortunately, there was enough action in the movie to offset the director's bad judgment. I thought the flight scenes were good and I liked the opening of the movie -- clearly computer generated worlds exploding and reforming, really cool.
There are some surprises in the movie that I'm not going to spoil and I was not entirely pleased by them. I thought it made for a very awkward situation and it was distracting. But overall I enjoyed the movie and so did Sarah. Here's her review:
Superman was a really good movie. It was action packed and very suspenseful. I thought it was well acted too . I would give it 5 stars.One weird thing about the movie is Superman's cape, it looks like it was made out of leather or something. And was a weird burgundy color. It looks red on the website but it looks burgundy in the movie.
BTW, Doug and Samantha really loved "Cars." Doug said it had a good moral message. He said it wasn't as good as "The Incredibles" but that it was pretty good. Samantha loved it (of course).
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 10:22:00 PM
Who would have thought I would have started a Haiku poetry meme! Alandp of Blogonomicon posted a Haiku about Texas and it's quite good. If you do a Haiku of your state, let me know and I will post a link.
Here is another one I came up with today (when I was a little more wide awake):
The New Jersey shore
OOPS it looks like pre-cancer
better wear a shirt
I think I'm going to work on one for the turnpike next. That's what our state is known for: the mall, the Jersey shore and the turnpike.
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 01:49:00 PM
In a surprising reversal from their previous position, NBC has decided to promote their content on YouTube:
Previously NBC had demanded that YouTube remove their content from it's site:
Online video company YouTube Inc. said yesterday that it will promote NBC's fall television lineup and sponsor a contest related to a popular network show, signaling a wave of marriages between old-media firms and fledgling video Web sites.
The deal follows an announcement by Warner Bros. on Monday that it will sell downloads of 200 films and TV episodes through Guba, another online video site. The partnerships seek to solve two problems for the entertainment industry: Old-media companies need popular Internet channels to fight declining TV and movie-theater viewership, and Internet video start-ups need a revenue stream to capitalize on their exploding popularity.
YouTube attracted attention this year for spreading a popular online video that was illegally plucked from NBC's "Saturday Night Live" program. The clip depicted comedians rapping in a skit called "Lazy Sunday" and as it spread, it helped thousands of Internet users learn that they could share video as easily as forwarding an e-mail.Read the rest here.
At the time, NBC executives demanded that YouTube remove the video from its site. But then, seeing its popularity, NBC posted the same video on its own Web site. "The fact that ["Lazy Sunday"] virally spread like wildfire, that clearly told us something -- that we could maybe duplicate that and create promos that people could share. The mechanism was there," said John Miller, chief marketing officer for NBC Universal Television Group. Now, he said, "we want to fully embrace the viral activity that YouTube embraces."
I'm glad to see that the networks might start getting it that the Internet is not their enemy and that content should be made freely available. If you're worried about revenue, how about product placement? That way it can't be edited out, like a commercial can. It is in their best interest to get as many people interested in their content so that interest spreads by word of mouth
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 01:35:00 PM
Israel is demonstrating to the Palestinians that they won't put up with any kind of terrorist act against their troops and they have the military power to crush them if necessary:
Israeli ground troops pushed into the Gaza Strip early Wednesday in a military operation aimed at freeing a captured soldier whose fate has transfixed much of the country. The incursion was the military's first major move into Gaza since the Israeli government withdrew all troops and settlers from the enclave nine months ago.I think that they are about to find out!
An undisclosed number of troops reportedly entered the strip at its southern end, near the city of Rafah on the Egyptian border. Hours earlier, Israeli military officials said, military aircraft bombed two bridges in central Gaza to prevent the gunmen who abducted Cpl. Gilad Shalit, 19, during a Sunday attack on an army post at the strip's southeastern edge from moving him around Gaza or into Egypt.
Another airstrike hit Gaza's power station, knocking out electricity throughout the strip and igniting a huge fire that lit the pre-dawn sky. A third bridge was also reported hit.
Throughout the day Tuesday, Israeli tanks and troops assembled along Gaza's periphery while Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called for Israel to allow more time for international diplomacy to secure the soldier's release. But a tour of several towns in southern Gaza suggested that the population here supports holding Shalit until Israel releases some of the 8,503 Palestinians being held in Israel.
The groups behind the kidnapping have demanded the release of the 421 Palestinian women and minors in Israeli prisons in exchange for information about Shalit's welfare. Olmert rejected the demand on Monday, threatening instead a "broad and comprehensive" military operation unless Shalit is freed immediately.
"What can they do that they haven't done before?" said Mohanned Abu Nada, a 33-year-old Fatah supporter in Khan Younis.
Read the rest here.
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 08:55:00 AM
The UN was told that the US would not participate in the ban of firearms:
A remarkable thing happened at the United Nations yesterday. We, the United States, told the world “no”. The messenger was Robert Joseph, the Undersecretary of State for Arms Control and International Security. Speaking before the dozens of nations that have gathered for the review conference on Small Arms and Light Weapons, Joseph told the world in no uncertain terms where the United States stood.What did the UN want to do?
“The U.S. Constitution guarantees the rights of our citizens to keep and bear arms, and there will be no infringement of those rights,” he proclaimed to the dignitaries and functionaries. “The United States will not agree to any provisions restricting civilian possession, use or legal trade of firearms inconsistent with our laws and practices.”
The illicit trade in small arms and light weapons can be exacerbated by the unregulated possession of small arms and light weapons by civilians not part of responsible military and police forces. The measures below can contribute to addressing this aspect of the illicit trade in these weapons.
(a) States will establish appropriate national legislation, administrative regulations and licensing requirements that define conditions under which small arms and light weapons can be acquired, used and traded by private persons.
(b) States will seriously consider the prohibition of unrestricted trade and private ownership of small arms and light weapons specifically designed for military purposes (e.g., assault rifles, machine guns, grenades and high explosives produced for military purposes).
Any agreement with this type of provision would clearly be unconstitutional.
Read the rest here.
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 08:31:00 AM
Lindsey of Enjoy the Journey wrote a poem inspired by a meme:
Anywho...all of my blog friends are doing thisSo I thought I would try my hand at the only type of poetry I can do, Haiku:
niftyfrightening Where I'm From poetry on their blogs. They are doing such a good job at it too.
New Jersey Shopper
What else is there but the malls
Why shop out of state
Posted by michele at 6/28/2006 12:57:00 AM
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
On Tuesday morning, a retired Catholic priest and two veterans put on clown suits, busted into a nuclear missile launch facility, and began beating the silo cover with hammers, in an attempt to take the Minuteman III missile off-line. Seriously.So, were they trying to nuke North Dakota in retaliation? How the heck did they get that close to warheads? What if they were real terrorists? I don't think I will be moving to North Dakota anytime soon!!
The trio -- members of the Luck, Wisconsin group Nukewatch -- said the break-in was part of "a call for national repentance" for the Hiroshima and Nagaski A-bombings in 1945.
The activists used bolt-cutters to get into the E-9 Minuteman II facility, located just northwest of the White Shield, North Dakota. "Using a sledgehammer and household hammers, they disabled the lock on the personnel entry hatch that provides access to the warhead and they hammered on the silo lid that covers the 300 kiloton nuclear warhead," the group said in a statement. "The activists painted 'It's a sin to build a nuclear weapon' on the face of the 110-ton hardened silo cover and the peace activists poured their blood on the missile lid."
Here is what the Army said about the incident:
"At no time was the underground missile's safety, security or readiness affected in any way," said Col. Sandra Finan, commander of the 91st Space Wing.Somehow, I'm not reassured.
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 10:26:00 PM
So, I've decided to space out my postings for the DC vacation because my focus is too scattered to write about it now. To much happening in the news and with the Blogging Chicks blogroll, so I will try to get the posts done over the next week or two.
I'm not disciplined enough to force myself to write when my thoughts are somewhere else and I really don't fell like writing about it (this is why I still haven't finished my Samson study). I'm just not feeling it right now, so you'll have to wait until I'm in a "share my vacation trip with the world' kind of mood.
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 08:56:00 PM
Oh my gosh!!! The editors of the New York Times said that Bush should go after the money source in an editorial (on Sept 24, 2001):
The Treasury Department also needs new domestic legal weapons to crack down on money laundering by terrorists. The new laws should mandate the identification of all account owners, prohibit transactions with "shell banks" that have no physical premises and require closer monitoring of accounts coming from countries with lax banking laws. Prosecutors, meanwhile, should be able to freeze more easily the assets of suspected terrorists. The Senate Banking Committee plans to hold hearings this week on a bill providing for such measures. It should be approved and signed into law by President Bush.What short memories these guys have. Didn't they remember that they were for this action before they were against it (maybe that's why they liked Kerry, heehee). One has to ask, does the MSM really believe that we are at war? If they did, why would they put it at jeopardy the way they do by publishing the secret things that we are doing? This isn't about the war in Iraq, this is about the war on terror and I thought that the MSM thought we should focus on that war. Are they part of the left-wing tin-foil hats who believe that we are really not at war? Why would Jay Tapper say this on Nightline:
At a time when conservatives are struggling to spread the message that terrorists are out to get us....Are terrorists out to get us Jake Tapper? Why do the conservatives "struggling" to get a message out? Isn't that your job? Are they struggling because the MSM has made it impossible to hear?
(Link to Power Line via The Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 07:06:00 PM
So, Superman doesn't fight for the American way anymore? He fights for truth and justice but not the American way? The American way doesn't mean today what it meant in the 50's? He's global now and fights for global justice. One question comes to mind then, "Why does he still dress in red,
white and blue?"
What is the America way and what did it mean in the 50's? I'm going to post more on this later (I was actually in the middle of another post when I heard this on the news during Rush's show today).
So much to post (including the love life of Biden and Rush's arrest) so little time to do it in.
Updated to added: OOPS! He wears red,
white blue and yellow!
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 02:08:00 PM
It better not be Harry Potter or Sarah is going to really upset:
Rowling has already said that the final chapter of the seventh book was written long ago.Read the rest here.
"The final chapter is hidden away, although it's now changed very slightly," she said in an interview broadcast on Monday on Britain's Channel 4. "One character got a reprieve, but I have to say two die that I didn't intend to die."
When asked to be more specific, she added: "No, I'm not going to commit myself, because I don't want the hate mail or anything else."
She did explain that she understood an author's desire to kill off the main character of a successful series.
"I've never been tempted to kill him (Harry) off before the end of book seven, because I always planned seven books and that's where I want to go.
"I can completely understand, however, the mentality of an author who thinks 'Well, I'm going to kill them off because that means there can be no non-author-written sequels ... so it will end with me, and after I'm dead and gone they won't be able to bring back the character'."
I wasn't going to let Sarah read the Harry Potter series because I heard that they were very dark but then I read this and at the same time Sarah's Civic's teacher recommended that the class read the series because it had Christian themes. I'm glad I let her read it because she has really enjoyed the series. She finished all the books in about a week (she is a much faster reader than Mommy). She is really going to be bummed if Harry is killed off, along with millions of other kids and adults. I bet she doesn't do it.
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 10:19:00 AM
So, I think I'm on my summer schedule now. Instead of getting up at 5:30-6:00, I'm getting up at 8:00-9:00 and going to bed at 1:00. And the girls are much worse. And then as soon as I get up I check my email and see that I have 11 email messages that took me over and hour to respond to. Not good. So not much early morning blogging going on here.
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 10:13:00 AM
I think the NY Times should be prosecuted for sedition!
The Bush Administration needs to seriously think about reinstating the Sedition Act of 1918 which is defined as:
The Sedition Act forbade Americans to use "disloyal, profane, scurrilous, or abusive language" about the United States government, flag, or armed forces during war.They should not be allowed to get away with revealing programs that our government uses to protect our country in a time of war. If this was WWI, they would be in jail, I have no doubt.
I agree with Rep. Peter King who was on Fox News Sunday when he said...
To me, the real question here is the conduct of the New York Times. By disclosing this in time of war, they have compromised America's antiterrorist policies. This is a very effective policy. They have compromised it. This is the second time the New York Times has done this.
And to me, nobody elected the New York Times to do anything. And the New York Times is putting its own arrogant, elitist, left-wing agenda before the interests of the American people. And I'm calling on the attorney general to begin a criminal investigation and prosecution of the New York Times, its reporters, the editors that worked on this, and the publisher. We're in time of war, Chris, and what they've done here is absolutely disgraceful. I believe they violated the Espionage Act, the Comint (ph) Act.
This is absolutely disgraceful. The time has come for the American people to realize and the New York Times to realize we're at war and they can't be just on their own deciding what to declassify, what to release.
I really hope that the NY Times is held accountable for what they did.
Apparently I am not the only one who is thinking this way because over at
RCP blog, Tom Bevin thinks they should be prosecuted too.
David Limbaugh asserts that...
...the Times has aided and abetted our terrorist enemies in the war on terror. Its actions in exposing this program might very well result in the loss of American lives through attacks that could have been prevented had the existence of the program not been disclosed to the enemy. If so, blood will be on the Times's vainglorious hands.
I'll be watching to see what happens.
Posted by Susan at 6/27/2006 09:22:00 AM
You know, as a Christian the Trinity is a big deal. It's one of those things that we think is important enough to have councils over, important enough to burn people over it (which I of course condemn -- I hope that statement pre-preempts any snide comments). We don't mess around with this doctrine...it is the foundation of Christianity. But some want to change the language of the Trinity:
The divine Trinity--"Father, Son and Holy Spirit"--could also be known as "Mother, Child and Womb" or "Rock, Redeemer and Friend" at some Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) services under an action Monday by the church's national assembly."Mother, Child and Womb?" Where is that in Scripture? "Rock, Redeemer and Friend" are not distinct. Father, Son and Holy Spirit are distinct and biblical and this is how Jesus chose to have the church baptized:
Delegates to the meeting voted to "receive" a policy paper on gender-inclusive language for the Trinity, a step short of approving it. That means church officials can propose experimental liturgies with alternative phrasings for the Trinity, but congregations won't be required to use them.
"This does not alter the church's theological position, but provides an educational resource to enhance the spiritual life of our membership," legislative committee chairwoman Nancy Olthoff, an Iowa laywoman, said during Monday's debate on the Trinity.
The assembly narrowly defeated a bid to refer the paper back for further study.
A panel that worked on the issue since 2000 said the classical language for the Trinity should still be used, but added that Presbyterians also should seek "fresh ways to speak of the mystery of the triune God" to "expand the church's vocabulary of praise and wonder."
One reason is that language limited to the Father and Son "has been used to support the idea that God is male and that men are superior to women," the panel said.
Matthew 28:19-20 "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."Why wouldn't he want this description used in worship?
BTW, when I tell people that I belong to the Presbyterian church I have to quickly tell them that I belong to the PCA not the PCUSA because I want to distance myself from this type of stuff. It's bad enough that they consider you a liberal just because you're a Presbyterian.
Posted by michele at 6/27/2006 12:02:00 AM
Monday, June 26, 2006
Rain and lots of it! I am so thankful that we went to DC last week because many of the places we went to are closed and this poor child could have been Samantha:
"I just wanted to hear about stuff about America that I haven't heard in my history books," 10-year-old Loria Hawn, of Laurinsburg, N.C., said with disappointment outside the locked National Museum of American History.
The National Archives _ where the Declaration of Independence and Constitution are safe under glass _ was shut down because the moat surrounding the building on Pennsylvania Avenue had flooded, spokeswoman Susan Cooper said. All records and national treasures were "safe and dry," she said.
The archives will remain closed Tuesday, just days before the Fourth of July weekend.
Flooding also closed IRS headquarters, the Commerce Department and the Justice Department, but the federal government as a whole remained in business.
The National Gallery of Art shut down because of a weather-related steam outage. The gallery uses steam to maintain the proper environment to preserve its priceless collections, a museum spokeswoman said. But the artworks were reported to be in no danger.
The National Zoo was closed to cars because of flooding in the parking lot but was open to pedestrians. Then it shut down entirely in the afternoon.
(Link via Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/26/2006 08:58:00 PM
Oh, My Gosh! When you think these people can't sink any lower in your estimation they surprise you with the next thing that pops out of their mouth:
Senate Democrats reacted angrily yesterday to a report that the U.S. commander in Iraq had privately presented a plan for significant troop reductions in the same week they came under attack by Republicans for trying to set a timetable for withdrawal.OK, does anyone in their right mind think that what Senators Boxer and Levin wanted to do is similar to what the General wants to do:
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) said that the plan attributed to Gen. George W. Casey resembles the thinking of many Democrats who voted for a nonbinding resolution to begin a troop drawdown in December. That resolution was defeated Thursday on a largely party-line vote in the Senate.
"That means the only people who have fought us and fought us against the timetable, the only ones still saying there shouldn't be a timetable really are the Republicans in the United States Senate and in the Congress," Boxer said on CBS's "Face the Nation." "Now it turns out we're in sync with General Casey."
Sen. Carl M. Levin (Mich.), one of the two sponsors of the nonbinding resolution, which offered no pace or completion date for a withdrawal, said the report is another sign of what he termed one of the "worst-kept secrets in town" -- that the administration intends to pull out troops before the midterm elections in November.
"It shouldn't be a political decision, but it is going to be with this administration," Levin said on "Fox News Sunday." "It's as clear as your face, which is mighty clear, that before this election, this November, there's going to be troop reductions in Iraq, and the president will then claim some kind of progress or victory."
This official dismissed the suggestion by some Democrats that Casey's approach resembles their approach. "A conditions-based strategy outlined by our generals on the ground is a far cry from politicians in Washington setting an arbitrary date for withdrawal," the official said.And they might not even have the story right because no one from the meeting is talking:
A Pentagon official said his impression is that Bush and Casey had no lengthy discussion about troop reductions, and that any projections of specific numbers remain speculative. This source noted that Casey had said that he hoped U.S. force levels would be substantially reduced this year but has decided against such a move because of the continuing violence in Iraq.The Democrats are posturing in preparation of the upcoming election. If we do reduce the troop levels, then they have poisoned the well and claimed that there is no victory, just a political stunt. Nice going guys, really great way to treat our troops during a time of war.
"I think there will be a modest decrease between now and the end of the year," the official added. But, he concluded, "Nobody really knows."
Posted by michele at 6/26/2006 12:35:00 PM
I started to write this earlier and somehow deleted the post again, the same way I did last night. I better stop multi-tasking or I'm never going to get anything on the blog.
So, the first day of our trip we skipped church because I was afraid that I would rush to get ready and forget something. I got up late and was very disorganized and I had a lot of work to do before we could leave. I cleaned the kitchen in preparation for the trip. My kitchen is the cleanest when we are away for vacation. We were a little tried at the start of this trip because we had spent a number of days getting ready for Sarah's 8th grade graduation and for a visit from my in-laws. We had a party for her and I wasn't supposed to do the cooking but it turned out I did because my husband never ordered the ribs. Plus I had to run around to all the malls and stores looking for a dress for Sarah for graduation (my daughter was one of the few girls who stuck to the dress code, everyone else was dressed in sundresses or whatever they are calling them today) and a swimsuit for Samantha and capris and shorts for the trip.
After I finished cleaning the kitchen and I finished packing, we loaded up the car. We ran to the bank to get money for the trip (you are getting the impression that we leave everything to the last minute, aren't you?) and at the bank Samantha tells us that she has forgotten to bring her camera, so back to the house we go but she couldn't find it. The last place she had it was her field trip, so now I'm sure she lost it and we would never see it again (it's a low-end digital camera that I bought because I believed she would either lose it or drop it).
The trip was uneventful, I slept though most of it. We don't live that far from DC, about a four hour trip, so we weren't too tired from driving when we got there. I also read in the car, a murder mystery, I like light reading in the car (though I always shlep along commentaries that I never read).
We stayed at a Hampton Inn in Largo that was nice. We like Hampton Inn because you get breakfast in the morning and free Internet. This time my husband brought along his laptop too. Sarah left her's at home because she was afraid that it was going to get stolen. We debated for awhile how we could protect them while we were in DC during the day and we decided to put them in my suitcase and lock it with a luggage lock. It was an annoying routine but we were happy we didn't have to worry about them.
We decided to get something to eat locally and go into the city the next day. The reason that we picked Largo is that it was really close to the Metro station, it is actually the last stop in the blue line. We found out there was a Bugaboo Creek Steakhouse in the area and drove over to the shopping complex that it was located in. As soon as we drive up to the complex we see a huge Magic Johnson Movie Theater!
In fact you can see it from the train station. I'd heard that he had started a chain but I'd never seen one. I immediately thought of the Proud Family and it's spoof of Magic Johnson, the Wizard (what can I say, I have a preteen). In the Wizard's theater there are basketball shaped booths and salisbury steak -- but I digress.
Since it was Father's Day and after 7:00 on a Sunday night, everything was crowded, so we decided to go to a Tex-Mex fast food restaurant instead. After dinner we stopped at the Metro for a schedule and to figure out what kind of tickets we should buy.
The Metro station was within walking distance of the hotel and was big, new and pretty nice looking.
Now, here is one of the most amazing things for me on this trip, I thought the Metro ride was going to be one big pain the butt like the subway system in NY city and so I was apprehensive about how much time we were going to spend riding it. I was shocked to find out that it is nothing like that I thought it was going to be. It was one of the best parts of the trip, I loved the Metro and had a lot of fun switching trains and figuring out which train to take next and going from station to station. The ride into the city was pleasant and was the only time I got to read on the trip (I read half of a book in the commute to and from the city). It was a lot of fun and once we figured out how to buy our tickets, we were set and fell into a little routine. The Metro is clean and the people who work in it our wonderful and friendly and very helpful. We did not meet one grumpy or rude person the entire time we were on the Metro, both workers and riders were incredibly nice. I can't praise this system enough. For once the government got something right and they should be praised for it.
And what is so great about this system is that it is so clear where to get on and off and where to get a connecting train and they have a great system were you only have to pay $6.50 and you can ride it all day after 9:30 am (to avoid the rush hour traffic). It was kind of funny each day seeing the tourists getting their tickets a few minutes before 9:30 and waiting to exactly 9:30 to start their commute. It could have been a problem if we wanted to get a pass to the Captial (everyone gets there by 9:00) or the Washington Monument but we didn't want passes so we were OK getting to the city a little later than the average tourists and in some instances it worked better than getting their early.
But we didn't figure any of this out the first night, we had planned to buy our tickets Sunday night so that we didn't run into a mess during rush hour traffic but it was too complicated, so we went back to the hotel and Doug researched what type of tickets we should buy and I posted to the blog and did Blogging Chicks stuff until all hours of the morning (this was a trend on this trip, btw) and we decided to go to the zoo the next day and buy a one day pass which turned out the be a very smart decision.
Posted by michele at 6/26/2006 09:20:00 AM
Sunday, June 25, 2006
I have been very busy today and was going to post this but never got around to it. Today is the 10th year anniversary of the bombing of the Khobar Towers. Michelle Malkin pays tribute to the men who lost their lives and quotes Louis Freeh, writing in the WSJ:
I really wish that we could have a government that cared about justice, instead of its relationship with dictators.
The FBI's investigation of the Khobar attack was extraordinarily persistent, indeed relentless. Our fallen heroes and their families deserve nothing less. Working in close cooperation with the White House, State Department, CIA and Department of Defense, I made a series of trips to Saudi Arabia beginning in 1996. FBI agents opened an office in Riyadh and aligned themselves closely with the Mabaheth, the kingdom's antiterrorist police. Over the course of our investigation the evidence became clear that while the attack was staged by Saudi Hezbollah members, the entire operation was planned, funded and coordinated by Iran's security services, the IRGC and MOIS, acting on orders from the highest levels of the regime in Tehran.
In order to return an indictment and bring these terrorists to American justice, it became essential that FBI agents be permitted to interview several of the participating Hezbollah terrorists who were detained in Saudi Arabia. The purpose of the interviews was to confirm--with usable, co-conspirator testimonial evidence--the Iranian complicity that Saudi Ambassador Prince Bandar bin Sultan and the Mabaheth had already relayed to us. (For the record, the FBI's investigation only succeeded because of the real cooperation provided by Prince Bandar and our colleagues in the Mabaheth.) FBI agents had never before been permitted to interview firsthand Saudis detained in the kingdom.
Unfortunately, the White House was unable or unwilling to help the FBI gain access to these critical witnesses. The only direction from the Clinton administration regarding Iran was to order the FBI to stop photographing and fingerprinting official Iranian delegations entering the U.S. because it was adversely impacting our "relationship" with Tehran. We had argued that the MOIS was using these groups to infiltrate its agents into the U.S.
After months of inaction, I finally turned to the former President Bush, who immediately interceded with Crown Prince Abdullah on the FBI's behalf. Mr. Bush personally asked the Saudis to let the FBI do one-on-one interviews of the detained Khobar bombers. The Saudis immediately acceded. After Mr. Bush's Saturday meeting with the Crown Prince in Washington, Ambassador Wyche Fowler, Dale Watson, the FBI's excellent counterterrorism chief, and I were summoned to a Monday meeting where the crown prince directed that the FBI be given direct access to the Saudi detainees. This was the investigative breakthrough for which we had been waiting for several years.
Mr. Bush typically disclaimed any credit for his critical intervention but he earned the gratitude of many FBI agents and the Khobar families. I quickly dispatched the FBI case agents back to Saudi Arabia, where they interviewed, one-on-one, six of the Hezbollah members who actually carried out the attack. All of them directly implicated the IRGC, MOIS and senior Iranian government officials in the planning and execution of this attack. Armed with this evidence, the FBI recommended a criminal indictment that would identify Iran as the sponsor of the Khobar bombing. Finding a problem for every solution, the Clinton administration refused to support a prosecution.
The prosecution and criminal indictment for these murders had to wait for a new administration. In February 2001, working with exactly the same evidence but with a talented new prosecutor, James B. Comey Jr. (now U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York), Attorney General John Ashcroft's personal intervention, and White House support, the case was presented to a grand jury. On June 21, 2001, only four days before some of the terrorist charges would have become barred by the five-year statute of limitations, the grand jury indicted 13 Hezbollah terrorists for the Khobar attack and identified Iran as the sponsor.
Posted by michele at 6/25/2006 11:03:00 PM
I just found out that Aaron Spelling died. I had heard about the stroke but I didn't hear that he had died (and I even checked Drudge this morning):
Spelling died at his home in Los Angeles after suffering a stroke on June 18, according to publicist Kevin Sasaki.I liked him and I was fascinated by his lavish lifestyle.
Also, this seems rather suspicious:
E. Pierce Marshall, who feuded for years with former Playboy Playmate Anna Nicole Smith over his father's oil fortune, has died, his spokesman said Friday. He was 67.(Links via Busymom.net)
Marshall died Tuesday evening in the Dallas area from a brief but aggressive infection, the family said in a written statement released through spokesman David Margulies. He declined to provide additional details.
Smith married Texas oil tycoon J. Howard Marshall II in 1994, when she was 26 and he was 89. He died the following year.
Since then, E. Pierce Marshall had been locked in a legal battle over her entitlement to the estate.
Posted by michele at 6/25/2006 06:11:00 PM
The Carnival of the Blogging Chicks #3 is finally up. I probably would have had it up last night but I was trying to help one of the Blogging Chicks install the blogroll on Wordpress and if I ever thought about leaving Blogger for Wordpress that experience cured me. Wordpress won't let you use java script, so you have to use OPML but that doesn't update the list when I add a new blog. So this poor woman has to update the blogroll herself by removing the blogroll and then reinstalling it and she said that she would do it weekly (I told her she only had to do it monthly). And the worst part is that we couldn't figure out how to install the scroll bar.
And while I was trying to help her I was also trying to rewrite a Bible study that I was going to submit to the carnival. I was emailing her and working with Wordpress and surfing the Internet all at the same time and I dismissed one of the browsers that had my post in it and Firefox didn't even question this dumb move (like it usually does). Arrrgh! I had to start all over again. Needless to say I was up to all hours rewriting.
Posted by michele at 6/25/2006 07:20:00 AM
Saturday, June 24, 2006
I just read this great post over at Michael Yon's Frontline Forum by Sargent Tim Boggs.
Do yourself a favor, read this guy's post.
Currently Sargent Bogg's is serving a second voluntary tour in Iraq and he tells us what it's like in the town of Qayyarah (don't ask me how to pronounce it).
He gives us a view from the front lines and compares how things were under Saddam's oppression and how it is now. Sure, things aren't perfect but...
Most importantly there is hope for the future. People know that it is up to them to determine their future and they realize that they have a golden opportunity to make a positive change for their country. I have spent a good amount of time with Qayyarah residents, and I am quite certain that if America only knew more stories of towns like theirs, the picture that many people across the world have of Iraq right now would change. The smaller changes in Iraq like those that have taken place in Qayyarah are not always deemed "newsworthy" by the media but are of immense importance.Go and check out t.f. bogg's blog for a truthful perspective on the War.
(HT Michael Yon)
Posted by Susan at 6/24/2006 11:14:00 PM
2,996 is a tribute to the victims of 9/11.If you are interested in joining this effort to honor those who were murdered on September 11, you can do so by leaving a comment here
On September 11, 2006, 2,996 volunteer bloggers will join together for a tribute to the victims of 9/11. Each person will pay tribute to a single victim.
We will honor them by remembering their lives, and not by remembering their murderers.
Posted by michele at 6/24/2006 07:37:00 PM
Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.
Photo Theme. Join the blogroll. Visit participants.
I don't post pictures of my family on the Internet, so I'm posting a picture of the thing that I love after my family: my laptop! I was going to post a picture of my two favorite blogs but I didn't like the way it turned out (it was a picture within a picture).
Posted by michele at 6/24/2006 08:57:00 AM
This is shocking:
Former Vice President Walter Mondale says he supports a pre-emptive U.S. strike against a North Korean missile that is raising nuclear fears around the globe.I'm surprised he wants to do something before it's too late.
But this is just dumb:
President Clinton's defense secretary, William Perry, advocated such a pre-emptive strike in The Washington Post. Current National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley brushed aside Perry's suggestion, saying he hoped that North Korea would see the unanimously negative reaction from the international community to the test and return to the negotiating table.What does a crazy person care about public opinion?
(Link via Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/24/2006 12:47:00 AM
Friday, June 23, 2006
So, this week I actually was on vacation, that is why posting was lighter than usual. I didn't mention it because I didn't want to let the world (ok, at least the world that reads my blog) know that my house was going to be empty for six days.
We had a lot of fun and I took plenty of pictures and will be blogging about it over the next week. I'm thinking about doing a post a day, starting Sunday just as if I were "live" blogging it. It would be the trip, a week later.
Posted by michele at 6/23/2006 09:58:00 PM
OK, let's start with this:
The Republican-controlled Senate, embracing President Bush's handling of the unpopular war in Iraq, rejected two Democratic efforts yesterday to begin a withdrawal of U.S. troops from the three-year-old conflict.Just because there are people protesting this war and there are people unhappy with the way Bush is running the war, doesn't mean people think that we shouldn't be fighting the war (I refuse to call any war "popular"). I think we should have went in sooner (right after 9-11), so even I'm unhappy with the execution of this war.
And what is the purpose of mentioning that the Senate is "Republican-controlled?"
So how many Democrats oppose the war enough to bring home the troops? How many believe we should leave Iraq as soon as possible?
Displaying cohesion that has eluded Democrats, Republicans voted overwhelmingly to leave deployment decisions in the president's hands. The votes, which followed three days of sometimes-fierce debate, outlined the positions the two parties will carry into the November congressional elections and underscored the Democratic constituency's split between staunchly antiwar activists and those who are frustrated but less fervent. Thirty-one of the Senate's 44 Democrats opposed setting a firm deadline for13 Democrats want to leave Iraq at any cost, cut and run and leave without finishing the job. 13 went on record and were not afraid to do what they think is right, leaving the Iraqis to fend for themselves. And isn't it great that the man who voted for the war before he voted against it sponsored the bill that would leave the Iraqi people defenseless.
The Senate voted 86 to 13 to reject a proposal by Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) that would have ordered Bush to bring most of the troops home within 13 months.withdrawal.
And what I find laughable is the fact that they think they can "order" Bush to do anything. 13 Senators think they have the authority to "order" the President to deploy his troops. Haven't they heard that Bush is the Commander and Chief and that they can't "order" him to do anything. He isn't under them, he isn't their subordinate that they can "order" him around. Could you imagine Bush actually signing this thing into law (I'm smirking just thinking about it :-).
There was a second Democratic bill that got more support:
Another Democratic measure -- a nonbinding call on Bush to begin a troop drawdown by December -- fared better but still failed, 60 to 39. Republicans unanimously opposed Kerry's plan and lost only one member, Lincoln D. Chafee (R.I.), on the second proposal.Ok, "nonbinding call" sounds a lot less pompous and arrogant, a little more humble and aware of their lack of standing. But it still didn't get the full support of the Democrats. There are still Democrats who understand that we are at war:
Six Democrats, meanwhile, sided with Republicans in opposing both measures. One of them was Joseph I. Lieberman (Conn.), the Democrats' 2000 vice presidential nominee, who is in danger of losing his party's senatorial nomination this year to a strongly antiwar challenger.And then there's this (one of the funniest lines in the who article):
Throughout the debate, Senate Republicans said troop deployment decisions must be left to military leaders advising Bush. "The proponents of these amendments want us to tell the new government of Iraq that we are leaving . . . no matter what the implications for the future of their country, no matter how much they plead with us to stay," said Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (Tenn.). "The time to leave Iraq is when we have achieved our objectives."Troop deployment decisions left to military leaders? Wow, ya think? That's a novel concept, letting the military leaders who have been trained at great expense and who are paid for the expertise advising the President on how to fight the war verses Barbara Boxer or Joseph Biden.
And what about the arrogance of Reid to say what the American people want:
"The Republicans in the Senate stand alone in insisting on 'no plan and no end,' " Reid said.No, Senator they do not stand alone on this issue (amnesty for illegal aliens yes, this issue no), we stand with them when they say that the decision on how to fight this war should be left to those who are fighting it not to the Senate who has absolutely no business telling Bush how to run this war. Stick to your own business, cutting my taxes and getting us more oil by allowing more drilling.
And it seems like Kerry, who is sucking up to Kos' Kids, angered his colleagues by trying to bring some honesty to the issue:
Kerry's proposed amendment to a military policy bill to set a deadline for withdrawal was co-sponsored by Sen. Russell Feingold (D-Wis.). Both men are weighing presidential bids in 2008 and drawing support from antiwar Democrats busily writing blogs and raising money. As the party's 2004 presidential nominee, Kerry has a high profile, and his insistence on pushing his measure angered some colleagues who felt that it fueled the GOP's "cut and run" taunts.Hehe, the Democrats don't like being taunted. Are they worried that the public would get the right idea about them?
The Senate rejected the idea of troop withdrawal, can we know shut up about this and let the military decide when to bring home the troops?
Posted by michele at 6/23/2006 09:30:00 PM
In the comment section of the post of the stalker who lived under a woman's bed for two days Christopher Taylor says this:
You think that's nasty check out the foot-long centipede that eats bats on my site ;)So, go check it out and then tell me which is worse.
Posted by michele at 6/23/2006 08:26:00 PM
Hey, somebody ought to pay the bill is what a Dallas hospital is hoping.
That's why they are going to bill the Mexican government (one of many countries) for treating their indigent citizens who come through their emergency room.
The county is already preparing to send bills to several counties for treating their residents. Last year, the county had $76.5 million in health care costs associated with treating noncounty residents, according to numbers prepared by county staff.
Why should Medicaid alone absorb this cost? If it does, how long can we keep this up?
County Judge Margaret Keliher said she doesn't expect the foreign countries to pay up, just as she doesn't expect neighboring counties to pay for treating their indigent residents.
But that's not the point, she said.
Yes,the point is that illegal immigration costs us, the tax payers, millions of dollars. And it does send a message, hopefully someone is listening.
Posted by Susan at 6/23/2006 09:48:00 AM
Thursday, June 22, 2006
This is so gross and disgusting, I would have to move after this:
A stalker hid under a woman's bed for two days -- just for the chance to be alone with her. How he got the keys to her house is the scariest part, and it's a serious reminder of the need to be cautious before handing over your keys.I would never give my house keys to anyone, that's just nuts and no one could live under my bed because I have a waterbed (so much safer that way :-).
He was a parking valet with an unnerving obsession.
"He got access to her keys. He then took that opportunity to get those keys copied. That's something we should all think about next time we leave our keys somewhere," said Ken wainstein, U.S. attorney.
(Link via Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/22/2006 11:53:00 PM
This is absurd! If it is going on here, it is going on in your state too.
In Massachusetts, two senators have introduced a bill that would force state contractors to verify workers they hire. You know, to make sure they are here legally?
Call me stupid but, wouldn't you think they were doing that already?
Come on, how can the law only require that documents "appear to be genuine", what does that mean? It's just ridiculous. It's like trying to use monopoly money to buy a car, it just ain't happening! Those who do the hiring should be fired!
Currently, federal law requires all employers to examine the documents, such as green cards or Social Security cards, that establish an employee's identity and eligibility to work in the United States. But the law only requires that the documents "appear to be genuine" and stresses that employers are not expected to be "document experts."
Those loose standards, say construction industry specialists, enabled contractors to use undocumented workers on projects that received millions of dollars from the state, including construction of dormitories at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth and the building of the new Middlesex County Jail. Globe reporters who checked the Social Security numbers of the workers on the public projects found that some were obviously fraudulent, including one used by a laborer that was 666-66-6666 and others that belonged to dead people.
The bill would require employers with state contracts to check Social Security numbers on databases of valid numbers run by the Department of Homeland Security or the Social Security Administration or private databases, Tarr said.Did you know that...
How can it be that more states aren't using the Basic Pilot Program? (Hey now I really have an excuse for going to Dunkin' Donuts). This lack of use just exacerbates the immigration problem.
Homeland Security has already launched an initiative, known as the Basic Pilot Program, that allows employers to verify a worker's status using online databases. But that program is being used by only a small number of companies nationwide. Dunkin' Donuts has begun participating and has put up signs in shops alerting customers that employees have been screened.
No state in the country mandates that employers substantiate that their workers are legal, according to the Center for Immigration Studies in Washington, D.C. Georgia recently passed a measure that would do so by July 1, 2007.
I think the DHS has a tough enough job, but when they have these programs in place and nobody uses them, what good is it?
Sometimes I feel like a frustrated child and all I want to do is scream
"DO OVER", and start it over from scratch (governmentally speaking).
(HT: Laura Ingraham
Posted by Susan at 6/22/2006 11:07:00 PM
Here are the opening paragraphs:
I don't live in Virginia and I'm not a reporter for a paper that covers that state but even I know that the reason the Republicans are in deep trouble is because they colluded with the former governor to raise taxes. No Republican is going to be re-elected by real Republicans if they raise taxes. If you don't believe me, ask the first President Bush.
President Bush's unpopularity and the split among Republicans in Congress and the Virginia statehouse are hurting the GOP in Northern Virginia, say local party leaders, who worry that they could face tough challenges in some races this year and next.
Contributing to the leaders' concern, they say, are the recent string of losses to Democrats in Northern Virginia, a drop in local party activism and a widening divide with voters on such issues as traffic and taxes.
Read the rest of the story here and you can see hints of the real problem but notice that you have to figure that out for yourself, the reporter obviously wants to manipulate us into thinking Bush is the problem. That may be a factor but why ignore the larger issue? Because you have an agenda?
Posted by michele at 6/22/2006 08:22:00 AM
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
June 21, Summer has officially begun!! Woohoo!
Summer is a time for refreshment from the hectic pace of life. I am delighted to be taking a break from commuting my girls to school, my college semester has ceased and now I look forward to a time of recharging the battery, you know what I mean?
I'm looking forward to reading some books that I have not been able to since I started college last fall. I'm looking forward to spending time in my garden, puttering around. I'm looking forward to exercising, yes exercising, because my body is beginning to rebel against me and I don't like it. I hate aging! It will also help improve my golf game if I get stronger. (I just want to crush the ball off the tee!). I'm looking forward to blogging more (okay Michele?). I'm looking forward to going on vacation with my family.
I guess we all are looking forward to doing something over the summer and vacationing, but I want to remind myself, and you if it applies, that there is no such thing as taking a vacation from spending time with God. In fact, it is my prayer that I will increase my time in the Word not decrease it. I know we tend to want to take a break from bible study over the summer but we should not.
We should always be living our lives "in view of God's mercy, to offer our bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship" [Romans 12:1] so "let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith..." [Hebrews 12:2].
I'll close with this quote I read recently, may it help you to look forward to spending time worshipping Him!
Just give me Jesus!
He is enduringly strong.
He is entirely sincere.
He is eternally steadfast.
He is immortally gracious.
He is imperially powerful.
He is impartially merciful.
He is the greatest phenomena that has
ever crossed the horizon of the globe.
He is God's Son.
He is the sinner's Savior.
He is the captive's ransom.
He is the breath of life.
He is the centerpiece of civilization.
He stands in the solitude of Himself.
He is august, and He is unique.
He is unparalleled, and He is unprecedented.
He is undisputed, and He is undefiled.
He is unsurpassed, and He is unshakable.
He is the loftiest idea in philosophy.
He is the highest personality in psychology.
He is the supreme subject in literature.
He is the fundamental doctrine of theology.
He is the corner-stone, the cap-stone,
the stumbling-stone of all religion.
He is the miracle of the ages.
Just give me Jesus!
Posted by Susan at 6/21/2006 10:05:00 AM
We are slowly losing our freedoms, one by one and those of you who applaud stories like this are fools. When one right is denied then what makes you think others won't be as well? Freedom of both religion and speech were taken away from this student:
She knew her speech as valedictorian of Foothill High School would be cut short, but Brittany McComb was determined to tell her fellow graduates what was on her mind and in her heart.Read the rest here.
But before she could get to the word in her speech that meant the most to her -- Christ -- her microphone went dead.
The decision to cut short McComb's commencement speech Thursday at The Orleans drew jeers from the nearly 400 graduates and their families that went on for several minutes.
However, Clark County School District officials and an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union said Friday that cutting McComb's mic was the right call. Graduation ceremonies are school-sponsored events, a stance supported by federal court rulings, and as such may include religious references but not proselytizing, they said.
They said McComb's speech amounted to proselytizing and that her commentary could have been perceived as school-sponsored.
Before she delivered her commencement speech, McComb met with Foothill administrators, who edited her remarks. It's standard district practice to have graduation speeches vetted before they are read publicly.
School officials removed from McComb's speech some biblical references and the only reference to Christ.
I believe very strongly that we should not have state sponsored religion but I also believe that the state does not have the authority to deny a child their right to freedom of speech or freedom to practice their religion. The Supreme Court got this one wrong.
(Link via Right Wing News)
Posted by michele at 6/21/2006 08:31:00 AM
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Why am I the only one blogging? Where are you people? Susan, I know your kids are home but you could take an hour and blog about something! And Ang, hasn't it been a month yet? Aren't you due for a post (could someone tell Ang I mentioned her since I know that she doesn't read the blog).
BTW, yesterday someone came to our blog searching for Susan and Michele. We were #2. No mention of Ang though.
Posted by michele at 6/20/2006 09:53:00 PM
The voters will get their chance to make their voices heard on the abortion law in South Dakota: Voters will have the final say on South Dakota's tough new law that bans almost all abortions. Secretary of State Chris Nelson said Monday that the law's opponents had collected enough signatures to put a question on the Nov. 7 ballot asking voters if the law should go into effect as planned or be dumped.
Well, we'll have to see what happens. I hope that South Dakota voters are pro-life so this would make it to the Supreme Court as intended.
Read more about it here.
(Link via Drudge Report)
Voters will have the final say on South Dakota's tough new law that bans almost all abortions.
Secretary of State Chris Nelson said Monday that the law's opponents had collected enough signatures to put a question on the Nov. 7 ballot asking voters if the law should go into effect as planned or be dumped.
Why in the world is the Senate wasting their time with this issue again, they just voted on it and agreed it was in our best interest to remain in Iraq and only 6 Senators disagreed. Why waste their time with this again? We know that the Democrats want to cut and run, why do they want to continue to demonstrate that fact? Doesn't Congress have other things they could be doing, like cutting my taxes? Or lifting the ban on drilling off shore or in Alaska.
Fierce election-year debate on Iraq spilled over into a second week on Capitol Hill with Senate Democrats lining up behind a proposal to start U.S. troop withdrawals this year and Republicans chastising them for espousing a "cut-and-run" strategy.How does the Senate require the President to withdraw troops, they have no authority to do so, he is Commander and Chief. And forcing the US out of Iraq at a future time without knowing what will happen till then is a stupid way to execute a war.
"Let me be clear: Retreat is not a solution," said Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn. "Cutting and running is bad policy that threatens our national security and poses unacceptable risks to Americans."
Sen. Carl Levin (news, bio, voting record), D-Mich., disputed Frist's characterization of the Democrats' nonbinding resolution on Iraq and stressed that it would not set a firm deadline by which all forces must be out of the war zone.
"The administration's policy to date, that we'll be there for as long as Iraq needs us, will result in Iraq's depending on us longer," said Levin, top-ranking Democrat on the Armed Services Committee. "Three-and-a-half years into the conflict, we should tell the Iraqis that the American security blanket is not permanent."
In the end, Senate Democrats brushed aside calls by some of their rank-and-file for a firm withdrawal timetable and on Monday proposed the resolution that would urge — but not require — the administration to begin "a phased redeployment of U.S. forces" this year. It also would call for the administration to give Congress by year's end its plan for "continued redeployment" after 2006.
Three Democrats seeking a stronger position on Iraq — John Kerry of Massachusetts, Russ Feingold of Wisconsin and Barbara Boxer of California — intend to push for a vote on their own proposal.
It would require the administration to withdraw all combat troops from Iraq by July 1, 2007, leaving in place only U.S. troops essential to training Iraqi security forces, conducting counterterrorism operations and protecting U.S. personnel and facilities.
I think maybe the Senators should do there job and leave the running of the military to the one who is in charge of it and if they think they can do a better job than maybe they should run for president (again, in Kerry's case) in 2008.
Posted by michele at 6/20/2006 06:46:00 AM
Monday, June 19, 2006
It's about time that these hypocritical do-gooders realize what hypocrites they really are:
Campaigning RADIOHEAD frontman THOM YORKE has confessed he is a hypocrite, because it's impossible for him to be a world-travelling rock star without damaging the environment. Yorke is a vocal ambassador for the charity Friends Of The Earth, but admits he isn't "flawless", since big concerts, tours and festivals rely on fossil fuel and create tons of unrecyclable waste.Sorry, but why should I cut back on my gas consumption when I'm nowhere close to what you consume? I'm not listening to anyone in the entertainment community when they jet all over the world consuming way more gas than my little car consumes.
Updated: Hey Patrick, I'm sorry I deleted your comment by accident. I had double posted and stupidly forgot to check to see if the post I deleted had comments. In response to your comment, I said little car. I bet my car uses less gas per mile than yours does. And Jesus walked so we have nothing to go on when we ask, "What would Jesus do?"
Posted by michele at 6/19/2006 11:20:00 PM
Snow was on the Sunday morning programs putting in a plug for the war and answering stupid questions:
President Bush understands there is growing U.S. concern over his handling of theWho in their right mind would think that the president should listen to polls and then lead. Are the polls even accurate? This is presumed in all of these questions, but is it?
Iraq war but will not rely on polls to determine when to withdraw troops, his spokesman said Sunday.
"The president understands how a war can wear on a nation," White House press secretary Tony Snow said. "Whatever the bleakness is, whatever the facts are on the ground, you figure out how to win. You can't do that by reading polls."
"Most people realize simply pulling out would be an absolute unmitigated disaster," Snow said.
Meanwhile, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (news, bio, voting record) of California said she and other Democrats would introduce a resolution this week calling for a phased withdrawal, noting that Bush signed a defense bill last year calling for that in 2006.
"Three years and three months into the war, with all of the losses, the insurgency, the burgeoning civil war that's taking place, an open-ended time commitment is no longer sustainable," she said.
"We want to see an end to this thing. We want to transition the mission. That isn't cutting and running," Feinstein said on CNN's "Late Edition."
And I think it's funny that the Democrats are on the defensive over the charge of wanting to cut and run.
And then there's this:
Sen. Joseph Biden (news, bio, voting record), D-Del., said he believes the American people are frustrated by the Bush administration's failure to articulate a clear strategy for winning in Iraq. Benchmarks and timetables for a withdrawal are needed to gauge progress and limit U.S. casualties, he said.I didn't know that Biden had the power to give the President of the United States authority to go to war. Wow! He is a really powerful and influential man.
"If I had known the president was going to be this incompetent in his administration, I would not have given him the authority" to go to war, said Biden, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Posted by michele at 6/19/2006 09:07:00 AM
Sunday, June 18, 2006
It apears that the Southern Baptist Church had an upset at their convention and elected someone who wasn't the annointed leader and blogging pastors are being credited with the win:
Southern Baptist-focused blogs began popping up about a year ago, when a group of younger (under 40) Baptists frustrated at the inaccessibility of the levers of power began meeting to discuss their concerns. Suddenly about a dozen blogs bloomed, perhaps the most influential being sbcoutpost.com, run by Rev. Marty Duren, a younger Georgia pastor. Last year they publicized a gathering that eventually put together a manifesto called the Memphis Declaration, which consisted of a list of Public Repentences, many of them for the SBC's arrogance within and outside its organization, and even included a repentance for "having condemned those without Christ before we have loved them."I like the new direction. I agree with them, Christians have spent far too much time talking about what we are against and not talking about Christ and the free offer of the gospel.
"Without the bloggers Page wouldn't have been elected. He was a relative unknown, and the bloggers really have created the whole conversation. It's very much a generation shift."
Whether it indicates a true political or theological shift remains to be seen. Page, although he reportedly acknowledged the bloggers' help in winning, is not one of them or beholden to them. Page did tell reporters after the election that "I do not want anyone to think I am out to undo a conservative movement." But he added, "[But for] too long Baptists have been known for what we are against. Please let us tell you what we are for."
What I found interesting about this is the desire to turn this into a political thing, which E. J. Dionne Jr. attempts to do in his column on Friday:
But Page's upset victory could be very significant, both to the nation's religious life and to politics. He defeated candidates supported by the convention's staunchly conservative establishment, which has dominated the organization since the mid-1980s. His triumph is one of many signs that new breezes are blowing through the broader evangelical Christian world.Just because a Christian desires to focus on other issues, doesn't mean they have abandoned the unborn or stopped their support for the war on terror. And since Bush has been in office, AIDS and poverty and human trafficking are very much "Compassionate Conservative" agenda items. These are not Democratic agenda items, they didn't even make the top six. Bush has done more for AIDS than other president in the history of this country and that includes Clinton who didn't do anything.
No, this is not some liberal victory. Indeed, the Baptist Press reported that Page went out of his way to tell reporters that he was not elected "to somehow undo the conservative resurgence" in the convention. But he also signaled that the spirit he hopes to embody is quite different from that of the angry, right-wing, politicized preacher who has been a stock figure in American life for more than two decades.
"I believe in the word of God," Page said. "I'm just not mad about it."
The mellowing of evangelical Christianity may well be the big American religious story of this decade. The evolution of the evangelical movement should not be confused with the rise of a religious left. Although the margin of the Republican Party's advantage among white evangelicals is likely to decline from its exceptionally high level in the 2004 election, a substantial majority of white evangelicals will probably remain conservative and continue to vote Republican.
But the evangelical political agenda is broadening as new voices insist on the urgency of issues such as Third World poverty and the fights against AIDS and human trafficking. Among the most prominent advocates for a wider view of Christian obligation is Rick Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., and author of "The Purpose Driven Life."
(Links via PoliBlog)
Posted by michele at 6/18/2006 05:09:00 PM
To all the Dad's out there have a great Father's Day, I'm sure you've earned it. Enjoy the tie (hehe). To Doug, you are a great father, I hope you enjoy your day (my Dad's not online so it doesn't do any good wishing him a Happy Father's Day -- I'll have to call him).
(Graphich via Kids' Turn Central)
Posted by michele at 6/18/2006 08:45:00 AM
There are some interesting things in Robert Novak's recent column:
This is a divisive issue in the Republican party. Many Republicans oppose the plan of the President and the Senate but there are some who support it. A conservative blog was destroyed because of this issue. Hastert demonstrates that he understands that the cost is too high and the divisions too deep for a compromise. He understands amnesty is not something that the American people support but the politicians do.
Boehner on Tuesday was upbeat in addressing a breakfast forum at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which supports a guest worker program. He indicated he would resolve differences between the restrictive House bill and the much more liberal Senate bill by the Fourth of July.
But at a closed luncheon Wednesday at Charlie Palmer's restaurant, attended by financial contributors to House Republicans, Boehner declared that the immigration bill was all but dead. That change followed Boehner's conversation late Tuesday with Hastert, who made clear he did not want to pursue the issue that splits the Republican Party.
If he were really smart, when this bill dies he should immediately pass a bill that does three things and only:
1. Build a fence across the border.
2. Punish employers who hire illegal immigrants.
3. Streamline the process to get into this country legally.
Don't even deal with the illegals that are here in this country now because number two would take care of that problem.
(Link via Drudge Report)
Posted by michele at 6/18/2006 07:48:00 AM