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Saturday, August 26, 2006
We Have a Winner!

In the short 15 months that the Huffington Post has been around, it's had more than its share of idiotic posts by idiotic people. But there can't be anything more stupid than this post by Russell Shaw.

I hope and pray we don't get hit again, like we did on September 11. Even one life lost to the violence of terrorism is too much.

If I somehow knew an attack was coming, I wouldn't pause for a second to report it in order to prevent it from occuring.

Note to terrorists: Don't let Russell Shaw in on the plot.

But the jaw-dropping part of this post comes later:

What if another terror attack just before this fall's elections could save many thousand-times the lives lost?

How could that happen, you ask? Well, according to Russell, the terrorist attack could peel just enough voters away from the Republicans to get the Democrats back into power, which would save millions of lives via stem cell research, support for mass transit, stricter gun control, etc.

There are quite a few problems with this analysis, starting with the notion that the Democrats would save all those lives. Second, who's to say that a terrorist attack would drive the voters away from the Republicans?

And third, yes, it's disgusting to root for something bad to happen to sabotage the Republicans. There are a lot of Democrats hoping that we have a bad hurricane season like last year, to drive down Bush's poll numbers. Yeah, it'll suck for those who lose their homes and their lives, but the rest of us will be better of with Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Reid.
Friday, August 25, 2006
As I Suspected...

Investing in the stocks that you get spam messages to buy is a fool's game.

Conversely, if someone who received the message chose to invest $1000 (£530) in a promoted company they would be left with $947.50 after two days.

Victims of a large e-mail campaign could be left with $930 after two days.

On average a victim loses $52.50 for every $1000 invested.
Brainster On the Radio!

(This post will remain on top until tomorrow afternoon. Please hit refresh and scroll down for newer content).

I will be appearing on Constitutional Public Radio tomorrow with my buddies Andrea Shea-King and Mark Vance at 3:00 PM Eastern time. CPR is broadcast on AM 1510 WWBC, Brevard County, Florida. For those not lucky enough to live on Florida's Space Coast, you can listen in over the internet.

There's also an online chat feature here so you can interact with us on the show. Just type in your name, city and state and submit query to get into the chat.

Andrea and Mark have their own blog, Radio Patriots, that I heartily recommend as well. That it happens to feature a post right now that is complimentary to yours truly is purely a coincidence.
Goldstein's Experiment

This is hilarious.

Best quote: "We need to take care of number one, before we take care of number Jew."
Duke Case Update

BDP looks at the new evidence released in the case today and concludes that it's not going to help the prosecution.

I covered this story quite a bit back in April, but quickly came to the conclusion that the young men implicated were almost certainly innocent of anything other than being crude frat boys. It is disappointing that the prosecutor has not reached that point.

Note this point, actually from the New York Times article on the case:

In Officer Himan’s handwritten notes, the woman described all three as chubby or heavy. Adam: “white male, short, red cheeks fluffy hair chubby face, brn.” Matt: “Heavy set short haircut 260-270.” Bret: “Chubby.” The descriptions in Sergeant Gottlieb’s notes are more detailed and correspond more closely to the men later arrested: Collin Finnerty, 20, a slender 6-foot-3 and 175 pounds with light hair; Mr. Evans, 23, 5-foot-10, 190 pounds and with dark hair; and Mr. Seligmann, 20, who is 6-foot-1 and 215 pounds with dark hair.

Sergeant Gottlieb wrote: “She described the three men as 1) W/M, young, blonde hair, baby faced, tall and lean, 2) W/M, medium height (5’8”+ with Himan’s build), dark hair medium build, and had red (rose colored) cheeks, and the third suspect as being a W/M, 6+ feet, large build with dark hair.”

The difference? Gottlieb wrote his notes after the fact, while Himan wrote them at the time. Colin Finnerty is certainly not chubby.
Plame Dame Fame Game

Valerie Plame and Joe Wilson's lawsuit got off to a rocky start when they tried to get the judge to agree to leave their home address off the complaint.

In less than thirty minutes, the Court was able to ascertain plaintiffs’ residential address from multiple publicly available sources, including a database of federal government records.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
Why The Republicans Will Win, Or At Least Have Limited Losses

Because the Democrats are too busy fighting other Democrats. Matt Taibbi displays the thin skin and bile that we've come to expect from the left wing blogosphere:

What exactly does self-appointed congressional mega-celebrity and Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chair Rahm Emanuel mean (says a friend of mine in Congress of him: "He's an amoral, showboating cock") when he says, "Do I think [bloggers] and Al Sharpton are the future of the Democratic Party?"

That's actually not hard to figure out; it's political hack-ese for the human sentence bloggers = Al Sharpton. As for what he means by that: Just think about the thought process that had to go into Emanuel's adding of the phrase "and Al Sharpton," when Al Sharpton wasn't even part of the question. Ask yourself if you really believe Emanuel isn't aware that he's addressing the mostly white, Upper West Side readers of New York magazine when he "offhandedly" ties bloggers to the legendary gold-medallion-wearing icon from forty blocks north in Harlem.

Taibbi perhaps overreacts a tad here:

What Emanuel appears to be saying here is that "bloggers" -- by which he really means "people who voted against Lieberman" -- are welcome to "contribute," but not welcome to actually decide elections. In other words, we'll take your votes, but we'll decide who you vote for. An admirable sentiment for an elected official. How is it that these people have avoided being pitchforked to death for this long?

I suppose because not enough bloggers have been suggesting it? And how about this explanation for Ned Lamont?

The surge in support for Lamont initially came from people motivated by two simple things -- a desire to protest the war in Iraq, and physical revulsion before the wrinkled, vengeful persona of Joe Lieberman.

It was the wrinkles!
Clowns to the Left of Me, Jokers to the Right

We've certainly heard of a few 9-11 Denier Democrats running for public office, a couple Greens and some Libertarians. But this is the first Republican 9-11 nutbar that I can recall.
In an editorial board interview with The Telegraph on Wednesday, the candidate, Mary Maxwell, said the U.S. government had a role in killing nearly 3,000 people at the World Trade Center and Pentagon, so it could make Americans hate Arabs and allow the military to bomb Muslim nations such as Iraq.

Maxwell would not specify if she holds the opinion that the government stood by while terrorists hijacked four domestic airliners and used them as weapons, or if it had a larger role by sanctioning and carrying out the attacks.

Let me guess, she's just asking questions? And this is pretty wild:
She said this strategy “would be normal” for governments, citing her belief that the British government – and not the Germany military – sank the Lusitania ocean liner in 1915. The deaths of Americans on the cruise liner helped galvanize U.S. support to enter World War I, and benefited England, she said.

Interesting stuff indeed. Has anybody ever suggested that perhaps it was the French who bombed Pearl Harbor? Cui bono, indeed!

I did a little poking around on her website. She doens't have any issues page per se, but she's very much a nut. For example she hopes Bush dumps Cheney. Among her reasons:

The rise to best seller status of John Dean’s book Conservatives Without Conscience which paints a devastating picture of Cheney....

Well, hey, if John Dean doesn't like him, that's good enough for me! (sarcasm)

Over at Screw Loose Change we like to put up this Nutbar-O-Meter every now and then:

Survivor Segregation?

I don't watch a whole lot of TV, but I've watched Survivor off and on over the years. It's hardly highbrow entertainment but there's something very compelling about the show that keeps sucking me in.

This coming season, the castaways will be segregated by race, at least initially.

The announcement was made on CBS' Early Show. Host Jeff Probst says the idea "actually came from the criticism that 'Survivor' was not ethnically diverse enough." He says the twist fits in perfectly with what "Survivor" does, saying the show is "a social experiment. And this is adding another layer to that experiment." Probst says contestants had mixed reactions to the racial divisions.

Actually, this is not that big a deal. Last season (Exile Island), the contestants were divided into four groups--older men, older women, younger men, younger women. However, as I recall, the breakup did not last long. It was only a week or two, as the older women were in danger of being eliminated right off the bat.
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Rubik's Cube

A guy solves it in 20 seconds--one handed!

My Rubik's Cube story:

First some background. Somewhere around 1967, Aunt Fran gave me a little brainteaser called Instant Insanity. It was a set of four cubes, with different colors on the six different sides. The idea was to combine the four cubes in a line so that each of the four outer sides contained one (and only one) of each color--red, green, yellow and blue. Sounds pretty easy but it was difficult because there was only one solution and many, many possibilities. When she gave it to me, she remarked to everybody in the room that they had given the puzzle to a computer to solve and it took 48 hours. Knowing what I do now, I suspect that's more like how long it took to design the program, but that was the mark I had to beat.

I did it in a little under 90 minutes. Like anybody, I fooled around trying some combinations before I realized it was too big a task to handle that way. So I did some observing. First, I noticed that there were seven red sides on the cube, and only four blue sides (IIRC there were 7 green and six yellow). That told me that three of the red sides had to be hidden (i.e. on the sides between cubes) and that all four blue had to be on the outside. This reduced the number of possible combinations by quite a bit and everybody was blown away when I announced I had completed the puzzle.

So when somebody handed me a Rubik's Cube at a party around 1980, I was completely set to amaze one and all again. And six hours later, everybody's leaving and I'm cursing at this evil cube and how difficult it is, having interacted with almost nobody at the party.

I didn't get a cube myself for awhile; it was my recollection that they were rather pricey at first. But I worked in New York and it wasn't long before street vendors were selling cheap knockoffs and I picked one up. I still could never quite solve it by my own efforts, but then a kid wrote one of those Mini Books you see at the checkout counter, entitled "The Simple Solution to Rubik's Cube", and I managed to plod my way through it. Of course, I had learned the easy way as well--pry apart the cube and put the pieces back in in the proper spot.

Update: Guest vlogger Brittany at Hot Air wears a Rubik's Cube tee shirt in today's segment on Dave Ramsey.
Deb Frisch Returns for Another 15 Minutes of Fame

Auntie Moonbat gets arrested for stalking and telephone harrassment.

If you recall, we last encountered Ms Frisch in August, when she was forced to resign her teaching gig at the University of Arizona after leaving disgusting and vaguely threatening comments on Protein Wisdom.
Can You Tell Me How To Get--How To Get To Sesame Street?

Bulldog Pundit is right; some people have too much time on their hands.
Lamont's Poll Numbers Not As Good As They Sound

AJ Strata looks at a recent poll which showed Lamont within striking distance and discovers that the undecideds in that pol are going to break heavily for Lieberman.

Clearly the undecideds broke for Leiberman in the Qinnipiac poll and the ARG poll did not ‘push’ this group into either camp. But details in the ARG poll show they will go to Leiberman because only 5% of Dems are undecided and cannot make up the gap. If the Rep and Indie undecideds follow the trend of their general groups then Lamont loses (he is behind now and will lose more Reps and Indies than he gains). But it could be worse than that. The undecideds in the ARG poll are heavily against Lamont....

Solid analysis. I am pleased that Lieberman remains in the lead, because it means that the netkooks will continue to pour time and money into the Lamont campaign to the exclusion of other races where the Democrats can pick up a seat.

As if on cue, Robert Scheer writes that this is a fight for the "heart" of the Democratic party (there of course being no soul).

“If we just pick up like Ned Lamont wants us to do — get out by a date certain — it will be taken as a tremendous victory by the same people who wanted to blow up these planes in England. It will strengthen them and they will strike again,” Lieberman said after his defeat in the Connecticut primary earlier this month, indicting not only his opponent but all those who voted for him.

In fact, Lieberman, along with the president and vice president, has become a full-blown McCarthyite smear artist, painting his political opponents with the tar brush of treason in an alleged apocalyptic battle for civilization.

Oh, boo-hoo-hoo, Joe's being mean to us! Make him stop, Mommy!

Update: Lieberman officially qualifies for the ballot.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Shut Up and Shut Up

That's my suggestion to the Dixie Chicks, who are apparently the subject of a documentary that the writer seems to think could swing the election this fall. (Rolling my eyes here).

A release is tentatively scheduled for the fall, possibly right before the November elections.

The film revolves around the aftermath of singer
Natalie Maines' statement at a 2003 London concert, where she said, "Just so you know, we're ashamed the president of the United States is from Texas."

It chronicles death threats, political attacks and radio boycotts against the country trio, and that could make the film a political hot potato as well as potential ammo should longtime Democratic party supporter Harvey Weinstein become involved in the fall political campaigns.

And this is not exactly thrilling:

In addition to chronicling the lives of Maines and bandmates Martie Maguire and Emily Robison, Kopple said the documentary features clips from 15 of the Dixie Chicks songs and a new one written especially for the film, though no soundtrack is planned. "You definitely feel like you're in the front row of a Dixie Chicks concert," Peck said.

Hey, I hear scalpers are giving people money to take that ticket!
Cool Story on Venomous Fish

And how the guy who discovered a whole bunch of ones that were supposedly harmless, got his start.

One moment he was reaching for the telephone, the next he was out cold.

William Leo Smith, then a 20-year-old college student, woke up on the floor of the pet shop where he worked, blinking up at a ring of worried faces and feeling as if he’d been stabbed in the hand.

Actually, he’d been stung by a fuzzy dwarf lionfish — a dead one, no less. Someone had thrown it away, and Mr. Smith did not notice it when he tried to retrieve a telephone that had fallen into the same trash can. A row of spines along the fish’s back, armed with venom, jabbed him.
NY Times Expresses Skepticism for Airline Bombing Plot

Jeez, this article isn't too slanted.

The British authorities charged 11 people on Monday in connection with a suspected plot to blow up United States-bound airliners, and said investigators had discovered “martyrdom videos” and bomb-making materials in a far-reaching search of homes, cars, woodland and other locations.

The decision to press formal charges followed days of widening public skepticism about the extent of the suspected plot, first disclosed on Aug. 10, when the police warned that conspirators had planned to commit mass murder on what one officer called an “unimaginable scale.”

But the credibility of the allegations will not be tested until the accused are taken before a jury — a trial not expected to begin for at least two years.

The extent of the charges raised new speculation about the plot, possibly suggesting that it was more limited than indicated by the sweep of the first arrests. Of an initial 24 arrested, only 8 were charged Monday with the most serious offenses.

They're trying desperately to keep the skepticism alive there, wouldn't you say? I wonder why. It couldn't have anything to do with this story, could it?

The arrest of terror suspects in London has helped buoy President Bush to his highest approval rating in six months and dampen Democratic congressional prospects to their lowest in a year.

In a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Friday through Sunday, support for an unnamed Democratic congressional candidate over a Republican one narrowed to 2 percentage points, 47%-45%, among registered voters. Over the past year, Democrats have led by wider margins that ranged up to 16 points.
Monday, August 21, 2006

Definitely the iconic image of WWII:

He outlived all of the men in his famous photo.
Moron Matt Stoller

It's been awhile since I took a poke at MyDD's amazing 12-year-old blogger, but the Blog PI has a great post that I heartily recommend in its entirety. Stoller's one of those guys who really believes that Democrats are virtuous and Republicans are eeeeeevil. He's not really 12 years old, that's just the sophistication level of his commentary as you can see from Bill's post.
Paranoid Nutter at City Council Meeting

This is hilarious:

Sunday, August 20, 2006
Hypocrisy from the Liberals?

Say it ain't so! As we all know, there is a Senate race in the Northeast, where some Democratic party bigwigs have decided to support an independent candidate over a qualified Democrat.

What we don't all know is that the state is not Connecticut, but Vermont. Bernie Sanders, a socialist who is running as an independent, is getting no opposition from the Democratic Party, or the liberal blogs. In fact, the party honchos seem to be trying to make sure that no real Democrat gets on the ballot:

State Democratic leaders are spearheading efforts to gather signatures to put Sanders on the ballot as a Democrat, even though Sanders has repeatedly said he would turn down the party's nomination if he wins the primary. At least three other candidates have announced their intention to run for the Democratic nomination in the Sept. 12 primary, but party leaders prefer Sanders to any of them.

Where is the concern from Matt Stoller and Jane Hamsher about the fact that the party elite is trying to keep Democrats from having a real choice in Vermont?
Profiles in Sensibility

I'm sure the NY Times will moan about this story. A bunch of passengers refused to allow their plane to depart until two Asians they suspected of being potential terrorists were removed. It starts out sounding like paranoia and racism, but note this detail:

Passengers noticed that, despite the heat, the pair were wearing leather jackets and thick jumpers and were regularly checking their watches.

Initially, six passengers refused to board the flight. On board the aircraft, word reached one family. To the astonishment of cabin crew, they stood up and walked off, followed quickly by others.

The Tory Party was quick to show why its lost three straight elections:

Patrick Mercer, the Tory Homeland Security spokesman, said last night: "This is a victory for terrorists. These people on the flight have been terrorised into behaving irrationally.

"For those unfortunate two men to be victimised because of the colour of their skin is just nonsense."

Of course, the passengers were not behaving irrationally. They assessed a risk and decided it was unacceptable. It appears that the men were not terrorists, since they were flown to England on another flight the next day (probably after checking through their leather coats).


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Brainster in the Media

Howard Kurtz's Media Notes: May 27, 2005

Slate Today's Blogs:

March 16, 2005

May 9, 2005

June 3, 2005

Cited for Breaking the Christmas in Cambodia story (at Kerry Haters):

Hugh Hewitt: KerryHaters was on this story a long time ago. How could the elite media not have asked these questions before now?

Ankle-Biting Pundits: Our friends Pat and Kitty at Kerry Haters deserve the blog equivalent of a Pulitzer for their coverage of Kerry's intricate web of lies regarding Vietnam.

The Weekly Standard

Les Kinsolving

Greatest Hits

What If the Rest of the Fantastic Four Were Peaceniks?

Lefty Bloggers on Gay Witchhunt (linked by 16 blogs including Instapundit)

Kitty Myers Breaks Christmas in Cambodia

Brainster Shows Brinkley Says No Christmas in Cambodia

Explanation of the Blog's Name

Power Ratings Explained

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