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Saturday, July 09, 2005
 
How To Send a Trackback Ping

Here's a little blogging 101. First, sign up with Haloscan and have them put comments and trackbacks on your site. Then turn off the comments in blogger (Under Settings/Comments choose Hide). When you're done, your posts should initially look like mine, ending with the name and time posted. Underneath that you'll see:

Comment (0) | Trackback (0)

Now, design a post that links to another blogger's post. For example, two posts down I linked to Captain Ed's post on Steven Spielberg's next movie, so we'll use that as the example. Open up a new browser window or tab, and go to Haloscan. You may need to login with your username and password. Now click on "Manage Trackback" and then "Send a Trackback Ping". Note the form that you have to fill in:



As you can see, the form has already filled in the first two lines for you, with your blog name and URL. Unfortunately, you can't use that URL, you have to use the actual permalink URL on the individual post, which is found by clicking on the time of the post. In this case, it's:

http://www.brainster.blogspot.com/2005_07_03_
brainster_archive.html#112092551248647552

So copy that from the address bar and paste in into the second box. Title's pretty obvious; my title for the post was Reel Stuff. Your excerpt is where you have a chance to be a little creative. Remember, the object of using Trackback is to get visitors to travel to your site, so you want to put the most intriguing part of your post in the Excerpt. In the Reel Stuff post, I'd suspect that's this segment:

As it happens, I read "Vengeance", the book on which the film is based, about a week after 9-11.

So I copy and paste that segment into the Haloscan form.

Now comes the absolute trickiest part of the form, the part that more people screw up than anything else. See the "URLs to Ping"? You may think that's just the Permalink on Captain Ed's post:

http://www.captainsquartersblog.com/mt/archives/004911.php

But it's not. You have to find the Trackback URL for the post, which in Captain Ed's case is given at the end of the post:



Different blogs may have the Trackback URL in different places. On Blogger blogs with Haloscan, it's inside the Trackback (0) link; click on that to find the Trackback URL.

Okay, now we've completed the form, it's time to click on "Ping Now". If you've done it right, you should see the following message:



Trackback Etiquette: Only send trackback pings to posts which you have actually linked with your post. Don't forget, you're getting a link on that other person's blog; it's only fair that you give them a link from yours as well. When you see that somebody has trackbacked to one of your posts (always a bit of a thrill for smaller blogs), make a point to surf over to that person's post. You may find that they have more information on the subject, or perhaps they have disagreed with you. My general principle then is to update my original post with something like "Third Wave Dave has more here" and link to Dave's post.

Trackback Trick: I call this one the Instaleech. Say you see that Instapundit has just now linked one of Captain Ed's posts. Quickly compose a post linking to Ed's and send a trackback ping. Now everybody coming over to Ed's post from Professor Reynolds' site will see a link to your blog. That typically will result in a hundred visitors or more to your blog, especially if you get the first trackback on that post. I don't think there's anything unethical about it, but I only do it when the subject is something I'm interested in blogging on anyway. Let's face it, if I get visitors based on a link to a nanotechnology post, those folks are not going to become regular readers of my blog, because I never discuss nanotech here. On the other hand, if I link to a post on heroes, I just might get some regular readers, given that heroes is a topic frequently discussed here.

Note: Much of the above discussion applies only to Blogger blogs with Haloscan comments and trackbacks. Moveable Type blogs handle trackback automatically when the post is made.
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The Heroes of 7/7

Wonderful article in the Sun.

Hero cop PC Rhys Webb, 27, was in the first 25-strong police unit to arrive at Aldgate and helped commandeer double-decker buses to ferry the injured to hospital.

Rhys said: “It was horrific. There were people with terrible injuries.

“Some were so shocked they were like zombies. One guy just started sobbing because he was alive.”
0 comments links to this post
 
Reel Stuff

Oliver Stone is doing a movie about 9-11.

I suppose we'll learn how it was all a CIA plot.

Meanwhile Stephen Spielberg is doing a film about the squad that tracked down and killed the men responsible for the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics in 1972.

Daniel Craig, one of the British stars of the film, said that the screenplay is a less-than-flattering portrayal of Israeli tactics. "It's about how vengeance doesn't work - blood breeds blood."

As it happens, I read "Vengeance", the book on which the film is based, about a week after 9-11. It was a terrific read, especially at that point in time. But I don't recall that being the message. The squad succeeded in killing several of the men responsible for Munich, but in the end some of the members of the squad are killed themselves as the hunted turn on the hunters.

Captain Ed has more thoughts here.
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Friday, July 08, 2005
 
Ummmm, No.

John Hawkins is a terrific blogger, but....

You want to get rid of the majority of "undocumented workers" coming into this country? You want to see the river of illegals flowing into this country turn into a trickle? Here's what you do:

Go after the people who are employing them.

Jack the fines way up for hiring illegal aliens. Throw flagrant abusers in jail. Have agents regularly show up at businesses known to hire illegals. In other words, make the penalties steep and chances of getting caught so high that business owners won't hire illegals.


We had this argument in the 1980s and Reagan pointed out that this amounts to turning employers into immigration authorities. We already require companies hiring people to get social security numbers; what more beyond that do you want?

I have dealt for a significant part of my life with occasional hassles with the federal government because I was born at an US army hospital in West Germany and not in the United States, although both my parents are US citizens and I have lived in the USA almost constantly since I was six months old (I did spend three months in Great Britain during my college days). These situations have resolved themselves since about the time I was 17 (after a fair amount of effort on my parents and my part), but none of them gave any desire to deal with some more government immigration officials.

But you know what? I'd prefer to be on a watch list from the federal government than be on a "don't hire" list from the private sector. And that's what this would boil down to; nobody in their right mind would hire me versus a guy born in Massachusetts assuming all other things were relatively equal.
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Meanwhile, Back at the G8 Junior Terrorist Society

The kiddies were planning their own anarchistic terror:

Items confiscated over a 48-hour period included 400 litres of cooking oil, which police said anarchists had intended to pour on the A9, the main route from Edinburgh to Gleneagles. Police said they had also recovered knives, wooden and metal poles, a crowbar, bolt cutters, axes and canisters of tear gas and pepper spray.

With protesters leaving Scotland in growing numbers, police showed their determination to prevent a repeat of Wednesday's violence by surrounding an "ecocamp" outside Stirling, where thousands of protesters had been staying. Police believe the camp had been sheltering about 300 violent anarchists who took part in attacks on Wednesday morning, smashing car and shop windows and hurling stones at officers.


Really the only thing separating these folks from the London terrorists is how far they are willing to go for their "cause". At times domestic terrorists are quite willing to go that far (e.g., the SLA, the Manson Family).
0 comments links to this post
 
Random Football Thought

New England and Tom Brady are both on the cusp of immortality. Unlike a lot of the pure stats types like my buddies over at Football Outsiders, I think Brady is obviously the best quarterback and player of his generation. It's hard to argue with 9-0 in the postseason. He's absolutely pushed himself forward more rapidly and even younger than the guys he's competing against for the greatest player of all time. Joe Montana and Johnny Unitas are probably the most common candidates raised among quarterbacks. Montana won 16 playoff games as a starting QB, the most of all time. Unitas' playoff wins are not comparable to Montana's due to the vastly increased postseason schedule, but in the only thing that matters, Montana led his team to victory in 4 NFL championship games (all Super Bowls), while Unitas won 3 (two pre Super Bowl NFL title games) and lost 1 (the 1964 title game as a starter).

Brady's really close on the championship list:

Starr (5)
Luckman (4)
Bradshaw (4)
Montana (4)
Graham (3) (Note)
Aikman (3)
Brady (3)

(Note 1: Graham won 4 AAFC Championship games before the Browns joined the NFL. Given that after joining the NFL they subsequently played in six consecutive NFL championship games (going 3-3), it is certainly arguable that Graham would have won more NFL titles had he joined the NFL after WWII instead of the AAFC. The problem with this argument is Graham had much better stats in the AAFC than in the NFL, indicating quite strongly that AAFC defenses were much less difficult to thrown against than the NFL's. Still, Graham was a terrific player with a very strong argument to make as best ever.
0 comments links to this post
 
Lots of Liberal Arguments Dying

The budget deficit: Declining rapidly.

The incredible shrinking dollar? Has risen by about 10% against the Euro in the last three months.

Unemployment: At 5%

Is it any wonder that Paul Krugman's reduced to writing about obesity?
0 comments links to this post
 
Don't Drink and Tell Your Doctor About It

At least, not in Pennsylvania:

A state appellate court has rejected an appeal from a Lebanon man whose driver's license was revoked by the state after he told doctors he drank more than a six-pack of beer a day.

Under a law that dates to the 1960s, doctors in Pennsylvania must report any physical or mental impairments in patients over 15 years old that could compromise their ability to drive safely. The law requires an indefinite recall of the license until the driver can prove he or she is competent to drive.
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I Can Only Echo These Sentiments

Terrific photoshop by Chris of Lucky Dawg.

0 comments links to this post
 
Thanks, Canada!

Eco-terrorist Tre Arrow is being extradited to the US to face arson charges.

The 30-year-old Arrow contends he won’t get a fair trial in the United States because of the FBI’s assertion that his alleged crimes are acts of terrorism. He faces federal charges in Oregon of using fire to commit a felony, destroying vehicles used in interstate commerce and using incendiary devices in a crime of violence. The charges carry up to a combined 80 years in prison.

More here.

Be sure to check out Angry in the Great White North's hilarious take on Tre's name.
0 comments links to this post
 
London Blogging

Charmaine Yoest gets a few "man in the street" reactions on the London bombings; mostly it sounds like an interview with the crowd at a Michael Moore film.

When I first asked her about Tony Blair she was hesitant to assign blame. But as we talked, she became more animated, and finally blurted out: "This is the price we're paying [for the war in Iraq]. Yes, I guess I do blame [Blair] -- makes you bloody angry. . . we've killed all those people in Iraq; all those civilians . . . "

Sigh. Just a reminder that England's still quite a bit to the left of us.
0 comments links to this post
Thursday, July 07, 2005
 
Air Idiot Theory

That's what I get for tuning in for the five minute trip to the store. A goofball on the Garafalo foofaraw actually had the nerve to claim that if Karl Rove had not outed Valerie Plame, she might have prevented the bombings in London. He helpfully added, "with all her WMD experience", just to seal the case.
0 comments links to this post
 
Steyn: Defensive War Against Terrorism Fails

The best in the business at the hot topic:

As I wrote in The Daily Telegraph last March, "History repeats itself: farce, farce, farce, but sooner or later tragedy is bound to kick in. The inability of the state to secure even the three highest-profile targets in the realm - the Queen, her heir, her Parliament - should remind us that a defensive war against terrorism will ensure terrorism."

To three high-profile farces, we now have that high-profile tragedy, of impressive timing. It's not a question of trying and prodding and testing and finding the weak link in the chain, the one day - on Monday or Wednesday, in January or November, when an immigration official or a luggage checker is a bit absent-minded and distracted and you slip quietly through. Instead, the jihad, via one of its wholly owned but independently operated subsidiaries, scheduled an atrocity for the start of the G8 summit and managed to pull it off - at a time when ports and airports and internal security were all supposed to be on heightened alert. That's quite a feat.


My sister mentioned today that her initial reaction was of course shock and horror, but then resignation. It may be hard to remember, but we all thought more terrorist attacks were coming after 9-11. Nobody, nobody at all was predicting that nothing major would happen in the US for another 3 plus years (so far).

But it will happen, inevitably. 9-11 and 7-7 prove that free societies cannot prevent major attacks from the terrorists. We can only hope that we will retain the will to defeat them on their own ground, and to create the kinds of societies in the Middle East where terrorism doesn't seem as attractive an option as opening a donut shop.
0 comments links to this post
 
Meet Charlie Hargreaves

Thanks to terrific L-Dotter Liberty7, who finds these terrific WWII stories seemingly every night when I'm checking Lucianne.

Charles Hargreaves, who has died aged 87, was parachuted into Yugoslavia by the Special Operations Executive to make himself "useful" to the Chetnik Royalist forces in 1943.

Speaking no Serbo-Croat but impeccably turned out in service dress, Sam Browne and riding boots, he narrowly missed landing on top of the signal bonfire. He then marched up to the waiting Chetniks, came to attention and saluted. An eyewitness said: "In the silence which succeeded the gasp of admiration, you could almost hear the prestige of the British Empire rising".


Okay, that sounds a bit over the top, but you have to read the whole story.
0 comments links to this post
 
Send Tony Blair Your Support!

Third Wave Dave has the link.
0 comments links to this post
 
This Guy's Doing a Bunch of Great Posts on the Blasts

Lots of pictures, lots of audio grabs from the TV and radio. Terrific blogging!
0 comments links to this post
 
The Problem With Mass Transit

Is not that it's vulnerable to attacks like those that hit London today; that's a problem anywhere people congregate in large groups (sporting events, churches, conventions, etc. The real problem is that after the attacks the uninjured have a great deal of difficulty getting home.
0 comments links to this post
 
Ken Livingstone Doing Great?

He's getting a fair amount of praise for these statements:

"I want to say one thing, specifically to the world today — this was not a terrorist attack against the mighty and the powerful."

"It was not aimed at presidents or prime ministers," the former Trotskyist said. "It was aimed at ordinary, working-class Londoners, black and white, Muslim and Christian ... young and old … that isn't an ideology, it isn't even a perverted fate, it is an indiscriminate attempt at mass murder."


I'd feel a lot more comfortable if he'd left out the part about the mighty and the powerful, presidents and prime ministers. The inference I'm drawing is that if they had been the target, Livingstone might be less angered.

Michelle Malkin has more on Livingstone.
0 comments links to this post
 
Well, That Didn't Take Long

Idiots claiming that the war on terror resulted in the bombings:

George Galloway

The buffoons at DU

For those defending these people for their statements, remember, you are agreeing with Al Qaeda:

As retaliation for the massacres which the British commit in Iraq and Afghanistan, the mujahideen have successfully done it this time in London.
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Eyewitness Accounts

From Sky News:

Terry O'Shea, a construction worker from Worcester, said: "I was in the third carriage, the one behind the one where the explosion was. There was a loud bang and we felt the train shudder. Then smoke started coming in to the compartment. It was terrible.

"As they led us down the track past the carriage where the explosion was, we could see the roof was torn off it, and there were bodies on the track."
0 comments links to this post
 
We're All Brits This Morning

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Terror Attacks In London

Timeline of the attacks from the London Times.

Tony Blair's statement.

Terrific roundup of Brit-Bloggers at (where else?) Tim Worstall's blog.

Fox News says 45 dead, 1000 injured, 150 seriously injured.

Lots of pictures here.

John Hawkins has a roundup of reactions from the DU crowd.

I'll add more as I find it.
0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, July 06, 2005
 
The Shoulder-Shooters

Check out the terrific article that Pam Meister links to in this post. Shoulder-shooters, indeed!
0 comments links to this post
 
Why Aid to Africa Doesn't Work

Terrific interview with an African economist in Der Spiegel (in English).

Huge bureaucracies are financed (with the aid money), corruption and complacency are promoted, Africans are taught to be beggars and not to be independent. In addition, development aid weakens the local markets everywhere and dampens the spirit of entrepreneurship that we so desperately need. As absurd as it may sound: Development aid is one of the reasons for Africa's problems. If the West were to cancel these payments, normal Africans wouldn't even notice. Only the functionaries would be hard hit. Which is why they maintain that the world would stop turning without this development aid.

Hat Tip: Lucianne
0 comments links to this post
 
Here's a Shock

"Day of hope turns to day of violence"



The most dramatic confrontation happened around Auchterader when the message of thousands of peaceful protesters was drowned out by those intent on violence.

Several hundred people split off from the route of a planned march and charged across a field toward the "ring of steel" around Gleneagles.

A small group pulled down a 20ft section of fence and threw rocks and other missiles at police on the other side. Officers had to abandon a nearby watchtower as it came under sustained assault.

In a dramatic show of strength, police flew in reinforcements in a Chinook transport helicopter, who quickly moved to secure the fence.

The assault on the hotel was part of a highly organised campaign of disruption and violence which began in the early hours.


Nearby businesses, including a Burger King restaurant, had windows smashed and were daubed with anti-G8 graffiti. In the small village of Bannockburn, protesters armed with metal bars, sticks and stones went on a violent rampage, smashing car windows, ripping satellite dishes from homes and fighting running battles with police.

This was utterly predictable. The loony anti-capitalist left does not argue with words, but with their fists.
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The Ultimate Conspiracy Theory

Greg Gutfeld lays it all out for you:

Rove continued to work for the Republican circles in very specific, but often vague, even mysterious posts. He was made conspicuous by his deliberate inconspicuousness. In 1979, he did some work on George H. W. Bush’s 1980 vice presidential bid. During Rove's involvement, there were EIGHT major plane crashes, including a Western Air Lines DC-10, which collided with a dumpster truck, killing 72 people in Mexico City at Benito Juarez Airport. One can only wonder what Rove was having for lunch.

A burrito?
A sizzling plate of fajitas?
"He likes his Mexican food," says one observer.


Hilarious stuff. I'll admit that Gutfeld's early posts did not impress me because they weren't over the top.

Hat Tip: Roger L. Simon
0 comments links to this post
 
Lawrence O'Donnell is a Creepy Liar Part II

Looks like Matt Cooper of Newsweek is going to tell who his source is.

Another reporter who had been facing jail time on the same matter, Matthew Cooper of Time magazine, agreed today to testify to a grand jury about his confidential source on the same matter, thus avoiding jail. Mr. Cooper said he had decided to do so only because his source specifically released him from promises of confidentiality just before today's hearing.

So now Lawrence O'Donnell must be sweating a bit, assuming the source does not turn out to be Karl Rove.
0 comments links to this post
 
PCUC

The California University system is considering dropping their courtship of students winning National Merit Scholarships. The reason sounds sensible at first:

They note that UC itself relies on an array of factors — not just standardized tests — to evaluate students' academic merit. And they contend that there is no evidence that the PSAT by itself is an accurate predictor of college performance.

But of course, that is not the real reason:

In addition, these critics say that the National Merit selection process yields too few Latino, black, low-income and other underrepresented groups of students every year among the 8,000-plus U.S. scholarship winners. About 3% of UC's National Merit students are black, Latino or Native American, according to the most recent available statistics.

Nobody suggests that the PSAT or the SAT should be the sole criterion on which students are judged. But it does have one significant advantage in that it is an objective measurement of a student's knowledge base. Everything else; from interviews to grades to class percentile can be subjective.

The good news is that only the UC schools will be affected; private schools will no doubt be happy to take up the slack in demand for the National Merit Scholarship winners.
0 comments links to this post
 
Turban Durbin "Disappointed"

John Ruberry has the details; apparently Dick Durbin feels that Chicago Mayor Richard Daley was suckered into blasting Durbin for his ignorant and foolish "Pol Pot" comments.
0 comments links to this post
 
Show Me the Money

It's all well and good for rockers to urge taxpayers to part with their money, but when it comes to parting with their own, some are more generous than others:

But last night, Razorlight declared they will not be donating any profits from increased album sales this week to Live8's charitable arm, despite a plea by David Gilmour of Pink Floyd.
0 comments links to this post
 
Lawrence O'Donnell Is A Creepy Liar. Liar, Liar, Liar, Liar! Creepy Liar!

Ah, looks like John O'Neill is getting his revenge a little warmer than usual.

O'DONNELL: That's a lie. It's another lie. That's a lie.
0 comments links to this post
 
Geldof Gets It Right

He dismisses the "anarchists" protesting at the G8 Summit:

Bob Geldof Tuesday dismissed protesters who fought running battles with the police in Edinburgh as "a bunch of losers."

The Live 8 organizer said that they had nothing to do with the Make Poverty History campaign and he ridiculed the so-called anarchist clowns with "white painted faces" who thought they could "cause world revolution by standing on top of park benches and hitting the police." He also praised the police's handling of the protests.
0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, July 05, 2005
 
Lucky Dawg on the Radio

Our buddy Chris at Lucky Dawg News got to ask some questions of his (New Mexico) senator, Pete Domenici.
0 comments links to this post
 
Ted Kennedy's Nightmare

John Hawkins with a humorous Photoshop. :)
0 comments links to this post
 
Happy Anniversary to Kitty and Dogman!

Terrific bit of reminiscence here from my favorite blogger.
0 comments links to this post
 
Admiral Stockdale Passes

(Welcome, Michelle Malkin readers!)

An American hero.



During his 7½-year imprisonment, he was tortured numerous times, forced to wear vise-like heavy leg irons for two years and spent four years in solitary confinement. While imprisoned, he organized the prisoner culture in defiance of regulations forbidding prisoner communication and improvised a cohesive set of rules governing prisoner behavior. Codified in the acronym, BACK U.S. (Unity over Self), these rules gave prisoners a sense of hope, which many credited with giving them the strength to endure their ordeal.

He became modestly famous unfortunately for his confused performance at the 1992 Vice Presidential Debate, which got some cheap laughs for some uninformed comedians. I remember realizing that this Dennis Miller guy was somebody to watch when he blasted those mocking Admiral Stockdale:

"Now I know (Stockdale's name has) become a buzzword in this culture for doddering old man, but let's look at the record, folks. The guy was the first guy in and the last guy out of Vietnam, a war that many Americans, including our present President, did not want to dirty their hands with.

The reason he had to turn his hearing aid on at that debate is because those f***ing animals knocked his eardrums out when he wouldn't spill his guts. He teaches philosophy at Stanford University, he's a brilliant, sensitive, courageous man. And yet he committed the one unpardonable sin in our culture: he was bad on television.

"Somewhere out there Paddy Chayefsky must be laughing his ass off. ..."


Admiral James Stockdale, dead at age 81. If you're a fan of this blog, you probably recognize that medal he's wearing; it's the big one.

Michelle Malkin has more.

Joust the Facts has a nice post up on the subject, as does Hube's Cube.

More tributes at More than Loans and Blackfive, and our old buddy Bill Faith at Small Town Veteran.
0 comments links to this post
 
At the G-8 Protests

Entertaining live-blogging by Josh Trevino.

One of the anarchists began goosestepping alongside the formation, chanting in time: "Ba dum da dum! Ba dum da dum!" It occurred to me then that I was looking forward to the inevitable police charge to clear out these folks. It also occurred to me that I was surely in its way.

Hat Tip: Instapundit

More here. If you must, you can also check out John Aravosis' blog for the left-wing take; I won't link him but he wouldn't be hard to find with Google.--Update. I changed my mind. Aravosis is certainly not somebody I care to associate with, but he's got some good photos on this post. I definitely don't recommend that you surf around that site, but the linked post contains nothing objectionable.
0 comments links to this post
 
With Friends Like These

Look who's leading the charge to shut down Gitmo:

Rachel Meeropol, a lawyer with the Center for Constitutional Rights that has filed lawsuits in federal court challenging the detentions, also addressed the crowd.

The Bush administration "has claimed the power to kidnap men anywhere in the world and hold them, interrogate them, detain them without any process of law," said Meeropol, the granddaughter of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were executed in 1953 after being convicted of conspiring to commit espionage for the Soviet Union.
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If a Treebeard Talks in the Forest and Nobody is Listening, Does It Make a Sound?

John Kerry, still flapping his lips:

Therein lies part of Kerry's problem. His nimble mind seems to have extraordinary difficulty uttering a simple declarative sentence that leaves no doubt where he stands. That might have served him well in boarding school, but it doesn't transfer to the American living room.

He also has tried to tap into the sentiment, largely fueled on the Internet, that somehow not all the votes in Ohio were counted. It's a position favored by Democratic activists, but many are the very people who didn't want Kerry to be the nominee last time around.
0 comments links to this post
 
Goldberg's Top Ten

The sidebar to this article lists the top 10 people who are screwing up America. Surprisingly George Soros isn't in the top group, although he does check in below #20. I'd say that most of these people are famous, or their positions (e.g., director of the ACLU) are famous.
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Monday, July 04, 2005
 
Okay, Barbara Demick Rights Things

Back in March, Barbara Demick of the LA Times wrote a rather ridiculous article on North Korea which I blogged about here, and Hugh Hewitt ragged on her for on the radio. The article seemed to be glossing over the problems in the Hermit Country.

Well, nobody will accuse Ms Demick of whitewashing with her breathtaking piece in today's LA Times.

His day begins at 4:30 a.m. The 64-year-old retired math teacher doesn't own a clock or even a watch, but the internal alarm that has kept him alive while so many of his fellow North Koreans have starved to death tells him he had better get out to pick grass if his family is to survive.

Soon the streets of his city, Chongjin, will be swarming with others doing the same. Some cook the grass to eat. The teacher feeds it to the rabbits his family sells at the market.


And:

In a working-class neighborhood in southern Chongjin, the 39-year-old coal miner lives in a squat, drab house. The homes in Ranam are organized in blocks, usually with five units on either side of an alley and an outhouse at one end shared by the 10 families.

His only piece of furniture is a wooden table with folding legs. He has one cooking pot. One knife. A couple of bowls. A cutting board that he made himself. A large urn to store water he brings from the well.

He has four pairs of chopsticks and four spoons — exactly enough for himself, his wife, 12-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son. He traded away his extra utensils for food years ago.


Terrific and horrifying read. I slammed Demick for her earlier article, but she was courageous enough to go on Hugh's show and say that she wrote certain things the way she had in order to get to write other things. This is a stunning piece, one that has Pulitzer written all over it.
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Live 8 Dish

Okay, it's trashy and tawdry and all that. But it's still cool to read:

Despite running the event, Geldof managed to offend at least one person. Fellow organiser MIDGE URE was said to be furious that Bob had refused to allow him to perform - but then appeared himself singing the Boomtown Rats song I Don't Like Mondays.

Ure was heard muttering furiously: 'Oh God, what a tart he is,' when he saw Geldof singing on the video screens in the VIP room. Those who were at the original Live Aid remembered how Geldof had moved his performance around in the first show meaning that he, and not Ure, would perform in front of Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
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Just Don't Fire Those Guns!



Or I have a hunch Batman and Robin would have blisters on their thighs!
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Happy Birthday, USA!



I'm going to upload a whole bunch of patriotic comic covers today.
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Sunday, July 03, 2005
 
Bwahahahahahaha!

The latest and greatest political blog from the left.
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Portrait of Howard Dean

The Vermonster gets the soft-focus treatment in the Washington Post. It's risible in parts, as in the long sections that are dedicated to talking about how frugal Dean is:

One would not expect the DNC chair to fly coach. But he does. He rides the New York subway and the Washington Metro. He generally refuses car service, because he doesn't like to waste money or time in traffic. Also, he can't stand luggage carousels. "Anyone who travels with me has to do carry-on," he says. His travel bag is a beaten up Tumi with red masking tape jacked around the handle. It contains exactly one suit.

Which would be a whole lot more impressive if Dean didn't famously blow through some $40 million in Iowa and New Hampshire last year, which netted him a fourth and second place finish, respectively.

The Ankle-Biting Pundits were pretty annoyed at this part:

Dean's task would seem to be this: to take back his party from the left without pandering to the right or infuriating various Democratic "constituencies" -- from George Soros, to labor, right down to and including unlicensed ceramicists -- while also rebuilding dilapidated party infrastructure in 50 states.

And indeed, that's just plain silly. Dean seems to be more interested in delivering his party to the left, rather than rescuing it from them.

The actual way Dean won his party's chairmanship is glossed over:

Dean burrowed deep into the DNC membership with a grass-roots campaign that echoed his presidential bid. He outworked eight other candidates with a one-on-one charm assault on the committee's 447 members, lobbying for votes with phone calls and visits. "He got the job the old-fashioned way," Reid says. Dean won critical endorsements from three Southern state party chairs: Florida, Oklahoma and Mississippi. One chair he won over was Oklahoma's Jay Parmley, who initially opposed him. "The last person I thought should be chairman of this party," Parmley says, "was Howard Dean."

Actually, Dean, with the help of left-wing bloggers like the Daily Kos, dug up dirt and sabotaged his rivals for the DNC chairmanship. And note as well the brain from Florida who endorsed him is in a little trouble nowadays for running the local party into the ground.
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Different Strains of Judicial Conservatism

Interesting backgrounder here.

Several of the leading candidates said to be on Mr. Bush's short list - like Judge J. Michael Luttig of Virginia and Judge John Roberts of Washington - defy easy categorization. But it's clear that justices from each philosophical camp would reach very different decisions in the cases Americans care most about. Consider abortion. "A traditionalist conservative might make his peace with Roe v. Wade, saying the country has accepted it," said Akhil Amar, a constitutional law professor at Yale University. "But an original intent person would say: Where does it say that in the Constitution? A deference person would say that legislatures can decide the optimal rate of change, and libertarians will divide based on their answer to a philosophical question about the beginning of life."

Personally I'm hoping for an original intent person.
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Rove, Rove, Rove Your Boat

Lawrence O'Donnell's pushing his "scoop" that Karl Rove was a source for the Valerie Plame story. Kaus points us to this Newsweek article which mentions Rove.

Now the interesting thing is that the Newsweek piece does not mention Rove as the source of the information that Plame was a CIA agent:

Luskin told NEWSWEEK that Rove "never knowingly disclosed classified information" and that "he did not tell any reporter that Valerie Plame worked for the CIA." Luskin declined, however, to discuss any other details. He did say that Rove himself had testified before the grand jury "two or three times" and signed a waiver authorizing reporters to testify about their conversations with him.
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