Archive for June, 2004

June 30, 2004

Informal poll

I’m contemplating my next rifle purchase. CETME or FAL?

Update: Hmmm, maybe a Saiga as a truck gun too!

Bush Lied!

He not only misled Congress, the U.N., and the American people, he also misled the new Iraqi Prime Minister! Of course, that guy is probably a puppet anyway, so of course he’s spouting the Bush Line:

Brokaw: Prime minister, I’m surprised that you would make the connection between 9/11 and the war in Iraq. The 9/11 commission in America says there is no evidence of a collaborative relationship between Saddam Hussein and those terrorists of al-Qaida.

Allawi: No. I believe very strongly that Saddam had relations with al-Qaida. And these relations started in Sudan. We know Saddam had relationships with a lot of terrorists and international terrorism. Now, whether he is directly connected to the September — atrocities or not, I can’t — vouch for this. But definitely I know he has connections with extremism and terrorists.

Which is what I said earlier: Saddam connected with 9/11? Probably not. Saddam connected with Al Qaida? Possibly. Saddam connected with terrorists? NO QUESTION.

And by that, I mean there’s no point debating it, so I’ve disabled comments.

Work for Change!

Working for Change, which is some sort of “progressive” organization, has a page where you can ask your Senators and Representative to Renew the Assault Weapons Ban. They’re nice enough to let you customize the message:

I urge you NOT to support S. 2109/H.R. 3831, a piece of un-Constitutional legislation that would reauthorize the so-called
“assault weapons” law.

Fortunately, the law will expire in September 2004 unless Congress and the President renew it. One of the most important outcomes of this is that high-capacity ammunition clips will once again be legal; the ban on their manufacture has crippled our armed forces, because of the scarcity of these magazines, making them more vulnerable to terrorist attack.

Anti-rights lobbyists such as the VPC, notorious for its lies and distortions, led the fight for the original assault weapons ban because the guns “look scary,” and they hoped this law would become the precursor to additional gun bans. Of course, the law was useless, because it banned guns based solely on how they looked.

S. 2109 is identical to the amendment offered by Senators Feinstein and Warner that passed the Senate by a vote of 52-47 on March 2. Although that amendment died when the underlying legislation was defeated, Senators Feinstein and Warner will soon try again to renew the assault weapons ban. We must fight this bill also.

If you have already cosponsored S. 2109/H.R. 3831, you are supporting legislation that abrogates our Constitutional rights, but if you have not, we thank you. Please vote AGAINST this anti-rights, anti-military legislation when it comes up for a vote.

Please let me know how you intend to proceed on this issue.

I’ll be the blue guy holding his breath…

UPDATE: In the comments, XRLQ points out that this will probably backfire (no pun intended). Doh. Well, my intentions were, and that’s all that counts, right?

More on Moore

A while back, Bubba asked the question:

All the wingnuts slobbering all over themselves to discredit Michael Moore for criticizing their President on a Mission from God seem to have forgotten about Moore criticizing the Big Dog Bill in 1997.

I watched Moore’s movie, “The Big One”, on the Independent Film Channel last night. It revolves around his book tour promoting “Downsize This”. He goes out of his way to slam Clinton for his welfare policies and NAFTA. I don’t recall any wingnuts calling him a despicable liar for that. Go figure.

I guess my question would be, since I don’t recall any, where was the all-out media blitz regarding that movie?

Oh, that liberal media.

Didn’t take long

After receiving some grief for this post, I now point you to Exhibit A in what I mean:

Jesse Jackson accused the Republican Party, conservatives and the retailer Wal-Mart of attempting to “push the ideology of the Confederacy” in America.

Jackson made the comments in several speeches he delivered during his 33rd annual Rainbow/PUSH Coalition Conference in Chicago.

“The ideological right in control of our nation knows what it wants,” Jackson said. “The right wing fights for a series of constitutional amendments. They intend to have their ideology protected by law. They intend to push the ideology of the Confederacy and continue to challenge the vision of the Union,” Jackson told conference delegates on Monday.

“In this competing vision of America, we choose the Union over the Confederacy. We chose a simple but comprehensive plan to make America a more perfect union,” Jackson added.

On Tuesday, Jackson applied the Confederate label to the Bush administration’s economic policies and to the retail giant Wal-Mart.

While a prominent black leader engages in useless rhetoric, SayUncle estimates that in America today: 21 black people will commit murder; 22 black people will be murdered; 506 black people will be arrested for drug trafficking crimes; 1,000,000 black people are in prison; and 26,500,000 black people live in poverty. The focus by Jackson is on what keeps black folks down, never what can lift them up.

The enemy of my enemy – no, that’s not it

Some Libertarians are advocating support for John Kerry merely to oust George Bush. Other real conservatives have said for a while that to get the Republicans back on track, Bush needs to lose this one. I’m not sure I disagree. But it will be a cold day in Hell before I pull the lever for Kerry.

Odd

When DiFi wants to extend gun control, she’s passionate. But those against it are just the powerful gun lobby:

The NRA and other elements of the powerful gun lobby say the Feinstein’s assault weapons ban has been ineffective and violates what they consider Americans’ Second Amendment rights to own guns. The groups have lobbied vehemently to keep the legislation from reaching the floor.

No, they don’t consider it to be, they know it is. In fact, if someone can find any documents prior to the 1940s that supports the contention that there is not a right to arms, it’d be impressive.

The fight for the Assault Weapons Ban is gearing up. DiFi is looking for a bill to attach it to. The Senate will pass it. Bush will sign it. The only chance for blocking it is the House.

Update: Jeff has more. He rightly calls it an editorial described as a news item.

So help you . . .

WATE writes about a judge who removed all references to God from his court. The North Carolina Supreme Court told him he couldn’t do that.

One sign we’ve used a word too much:

North Carolina’s supreme court sided with county officials who argued that District Judge James Honeycutt couldn’t unilaterally change courtroom procedures.

The court ordered Honeycutt to stop using a revised oath omitting the phrase “so help you God,” and administer the oath as required by state law. Honeycutt also was ordered to let bailiffs open court sessions with a proclamation that includes “God save the state and this honorable court.”

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go unilaterally pour myself a cup of coffee.

Man Downs Blimp with Shotgun

From the Salisbury, N.C., Post:

Someone fired a shotgun blast and hit a remote-controlled advertising blimp Saturday as it flew in a field next to Team Chevrolet-Cadillac-Geo on South Jake Alexander Boulevard.

The blimp was advertising Cloninger Ford-Toyota.

Good thing he didn’t use an assault weapon.

June 29, 2004

5 entities

You would think that when you have a newborn baby, you have one baby. This is not true. Sure, you have a baby but that generally consists only of the head and torso area. Those two areas comprise the baby. But the baby comes with four other entities attached. Two of these entities are mostly harmless and two are downright malevolent.

The two mostly harmless entities are the legs. I say harmless because, even though they act totally independent of the rest of the baby, they don’t actively engage in activities the baby doesn’t want them to. The legs just sort of hang out, literally and figuratively. They don’t do much.

The arms, however, are apparently evil. They are rather like that Bruce Campbell scene where his hand is trying to kill him. They do things that are quite contrary to what the head and torso portion of the baby want to do. See, I know for a fact that the baby wants the pacifier because when I put it in her mouth she latches on and goes to town. Then, suddenly, here comes this hand from nowhere and knocks it from her mouth. This makes her cry. I know she didn’t mean to do it but her hand, acting on it’s own will apparently, is merciless. This happens quite often.

Update: The legs, I have found, serve the nefarious purpose of keeping all items with pant legs off of the baby.

SKS is not an AK47 – the second

Robert Douglas has more on what an SKS is and what it isn’t.

OK, No Way Is This For Real

http://billclintonbookmylife.blogspot.com/

I mean…no way.

On Moore

Haven’t seen the movie but, in the last few days, I have seen Moore himself on TV refer to his Fahrenheit 911 as satire; as a documentary; as humor; and as a satirical documentary. I have also heard him state the facts in the movie are irrefutable, though some have been refuted.

If his message about his movie is so mixed, how can anyone (even the base he’s trying to rile) take it remotely seriously if they don’t know if it’s satire, humor, or a documentary?

Start keeping your receipts – all of them

A bill to allow Tennesseans and residents of seven other states to deduct sales tax for federal income tax purposes is hitting snags:

”Senator Frist is a co-sponsor of sales-tax deductibility legislation, and now that the House has acted, he is hopeful that Democrats will support our efforts to go to conference,” Smith said.

Frist and Sen. Lamar Alexander said they would lobby Senate colleagues to accept the deductibility provision.

”This is a matter of simple fairness since citizens in other states are allowed to deduct their state income tax payments,” Alexander said.

Matter of fairness? Doesn’t Tennessee receive more federal funds than it pays? Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for tax cuts of any kind, but this likely doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in Hell of passing.

And can you imagine the record keeping involved? Digging up receipts from the grocery store, gas, etc.?

More media gun distortions

Via Publicola, we have this article which states:

“The rifle believed used in the recent slayings of three Birmingham police officers would be illegal under a bill now before Congress, a move supported by some of Alabama’s top law officers in the wake of the deaths.”

The Assault Weapons Ban would not ban this rifle. An SKS does not accept a detachable magazine and is not covered by the ban.

June 28, 2004

Plagiarism?

Mike may have uncovered some plagiarism from a college professor (that post and the one following it).

Another unsigned gun editorial

I think this editorial meets XRLQ’s criteria for being too stupid to fisk.

Update: Well, Phelps did it any way. Golly, you mean those stats from the BATF didn’t come from the, ya know, BATF?

Background Checks for Dog Owners

A particularly horrendous piece of Breed Specific Legislation is on the table in New Jersey:

S1718 Would Allow a Municipality To:

  • Require a special license for all “pit bulls” ($150-700)-including “American Pit Bull Terriers, American Staffordshire Terriers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, Staffordshire Terriers and any dog determined to be a pit bull type.” Licenses may be denied to anyone who has been convicted of a criminal offense or animal cruelty, as well as anyone who lives with someone convicted of those crimes.
  • Require anyone who owns a dog to prove that it ISN’T a pit bull (municipality will visually inspect the dog to determine whether it is a pit bull). Very few municipalities have staff with any breed identification knowledge or experience.
  • Require confinement in a permanent enclosure (including a secure pen AND a 6-ft. fence).
  • Require pit bulls to be muzzled when off owner’s property and leashed (3-feet long or less). Also, the leash must be approved by an animal control officer.
  • Send an animal control officer to inspect the enclosure and the licensee’s property at least monthly.
  • Require liability insurance for owners.
  • Violators are subject to fine up to $1000/day.
  • Seized dogs will be placed in no-kill shelter until properly adopted or until the dog dies of natural causes.
  • I’m not surprised that this is an especially bad bill because it’s New Jersey. Visually inspecting dogs is not a valid criteria for establishing breeds. Many boxers, for example, can resemble pit bull type dogs. And those animal control guys are going to be busy inspecting leashes and kennels.

    I hope it’s more than just a token ceremony

    It looks like Iraqi sovereignty has been granted early. Too late to determine if it’s just a token gesture or if it’s for real. The troops aren’t coming home and there’s more work to do but I guess the fact they have a government now can’t be bad.

    Welcome back

    Just noticed, Smijer is back. Cool.

    Weekly Check on the Bias

    Jeff has the latest.

    They call ’em fingers but I never seen ’em fing

    Ravenwood reports on life imitating The Simpsons.

    June 27, 2004

    Sorry about the dog

    Via Robert Douglas, we have another victim of police getting the address wrong. This time, it was the family pet:

    A responding officer went to Vanderford’s house, thinking he heard that address over the radio instead of Vanderford’s neighbor, Acosta said.

    The two officers saw a garage door open in the back yard and an alarm placard on the house and assumed they had the right house, Acosta said. When they went around the back of the house, the dog came out of the garage and was 5 feet away when the first officer fired his weapon.

    “Having no time to react, he didn’t have time to retrieve the pepper spray, he felt the dog was rather large and too close, the officers reacted with their firearms,” he said

    Paging Mr. Belafonte

    It could be worse, she could have just called them house niggers:

    Right Wingers will suggest substituting Jesse Lee Peterson, Larry Elder, Clarence Thomas or some other contemporary handkerchief head for Rev. Jackson. Then, it is time for me to say, ‘Gotcha!’ Right Wing African-American ‘leaders’ owe whatever status they have to the white Right. (There really isn’t a colored one.) They are groomed by it, popularized by it and paid by it. Their only connection to other blacks is the one they are being used for — appearance.

    Because, after all, none of them worked to get where they are. So, they must be right wing shills. And, of course, it’s impossible that a black person may identify with the right. They’re all just tokens. Unless they’re on the left, they haven’t worked for it. After all, there are no rich white guys on the left to oppress these black upstarts and pay them off.

    As for Jackson and his respect, he’ll get it when he seriously places race relations upon a higher pedestal than his own benefit.

    While we engage in rhetoric on why blacks should never identify with the right wing, SayUncle estimates that in America today: 21 black people will commit murder; 22 black people will be murdered; 506 black people will be arrested for drug trafficking crimes; 1,000,000 black people are in prison; and 26,500,000 black people live in poverty.

    Via Ricky.

    Update: P6 did not write what I quoted, this person did. I couldn’t tell as the quote was not blocked, italicized or otherwise made to appear to be a quote. I guess maybe the “…” could have clued me in.

    Valedictorian Denied Diploma

    From the New York Daily News:

    The valedictorian of a Brooklyn high school was escorted out of the building and denied her diploma yesterday because she trashed the school in a scorching graduation speech.

    A top student who’s going to Smith College on a full scholarship this fall, Schley was brutally honest about the High School of Legal Studies during Thursday’s graduation ceremonies in Bushwick.

    Among her gripes: The school has had four principals in four years, overcrowded classes, a shortage of textbooks and other basic materials, unqualified teachers, unstable staffing and uncaring administrators who refused to meet with students to discuss the school’s problems.

    When Schley came to school yesterday to pick up her diploma with the rest of her classmates, she and her mother were told they had been disrespectful and were escorted out of the building.

    Her mom, Felicia Schley, was furious at the way she and her daughter were treated and remains proud of Tiffany.

    “She busted her behind to get there, she kept it clean and she was honest,” her mother said. “Sometimes the truth hurts.”

    I’m not sure which side to come down on here. On the one hand, nobody wants controversy at graduation (c.f. reports of Bush-hating keynote speakers at college graduations). On the other hand, my instinct is that the school, like most institutions, is lashing out as it would at any criticism. In the absence of any other information, I’m going to side with the student. It seems like the school could be magnanimous here.

    You Mean There’s Porn on the Internet?

    From the Denver Post we have an article about the pervasiveness of Internet Porn. One of the worst sources is, of course, pornographic spam:

    Dan Twiggs, a tech industry recruiter, says he deals with porno spam every day as he sorts through the résumés that people e-mail to him. He’s tried various spam filters but found that they invariably spike legitimate e-mails too.

    “If someone wrote that they graduated ‘magna cum laude,’ their résumé was deleted,” he said. “I guess it’s better to write that you graduated with honors.”

    That cracked me up.

    Once more, with feeling

    Oh, those weapons of mass destruction.

    Like you and me, only better

    Looks like the House passed the bill that allows retired off-duty and retired cops to carry in all 50 states. I don’t oppose this legislation but think that laws infringing on the rights of all people should be addressed.

    Quote of the day

    Over at this No Quarters post, the Heartless Libertarian says in this comment:

    The GOP generally treats gunowners the same way the Democrats treat blacks. Throw us a few bones, tell us that the other side is super-evil and hates us, ignore us the rest of the time, and take our votes for granted.

    War & Cruelty

    Pat Gang has his newest column up on the strategy page.