Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Open Mouth, Insert Willie

Well, good ol' Willie Cunningham was at it again today.

He was introducing John McCain at an event here in Cincinnati and kept calling Obama "Barack Hussein Obama".

John McCain apologized profusely for Willie's comments.

Willie's comments just got him on Brian Williams a few minutes ago.

However, if they think what Willie Cunningham said was offensive, they ought to hear the word on the street around here.

Not that Cincinnati has a reputation for being RACIST or anything, but there are people in prominent positions in this area who have openly speculated that Obama has terrorist backers.

Sometimes I want to get the hell out of this area so bad I can taste it.

Willie Cunningham of course is now ticked at John McCain and says he is now backing Ralph Nader.

I'd ordinarily say Willie puts Cincinnati in a bad light, but, as much as I hate to admit it, I think attitudes like his are VERY common around here and he probably DOES reflect at least the power structure in this area.

Yes, all y'all need to get me out of here and FAST ...

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Saturday, February 23, 2008

Axinar's NEW Audio Comment Line

Axinar's has a NEW audio comment line.

Much like the old one, if you have a comment about something you've seen on Axinar's and you're just not in the mood to type out a comment here, you can call (513)685-0554 and I will get your comment in email.

If the comment is particularly good and interesting, I may post it in a future blog entry.

However, in addition to that feature, if you'll turn your attention to the blue button at the top of this post and at the top of my right column items there is a big blue button that says "Call Me". If you double-click on this button and then enter your phone number, Google's GrandCentral will actually call you back FOR FREE and then connect you to my voice mail. This works from anywhere in the United States or, I presume, from any VoIP number with a US area code.

Looking forward to your Audio Comments!

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Anonymous Lobby Against Scientology ( ALAS )

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Gayle's Va-Jay-Jay

So I'm at this taping of The Oprah Winfrey Show yesterday because Mrs. Axinar saw this notice on her web site that Oprah was looking for William Shatner fans.

Well, the way that the scheduling worked out, we actually saw an interview with Valerie Bertinelli first about her new book Losing It: And Gaining My Life Back One Pound at a Time.

Apparently in part of this book Valerie Bertinelli goes into some sordid detail about how she once kissed another woman.

Now, between the Bertinelli and Shatner segments Oprah chatted with the audience for a bit and she pretty much said, "Now while we're on the subject, I've heard all KINDS of rumors going around and YOU ALL don't think Gayle and I are gay do you? Because, let me tell you, even if I WERE to turn gay, Gayle would be the LAST person I would hook up with."

However, she went on to explain that the CLOSEST she ever came to getting in a compromising position with Gayle was once when they were in one of the camps in Africa. Oprah explained that conditions there are quite primitive of course and all you get for personal hygiene is a very thin bar of wrapped soap.

Gayle came to Oprah in something of a panic because she didn't have a wash cloth. Gayle seemed to be quite disturbed that she was going to have to make skin-to-skin contact with her own nether regions in order to wash up.

Oprah, apparently more experienced with primitive conditions, attempted to explain to Gayle how to use the soap directly, but Gayle still seemed freaked out.

Eventually Oprah said, "Good heavens, Gayle, do you want me to wash it FOR YOU???"

The Shatner segment was quite short. He talked about how someone paid enough for one of his kidney stones to buy a family in New Orleans a house. He also mentioned that he actually considered auctioning off the hip he had replaced about a month ago but figured that would be in WAY bad taste.

On the way out we all got a copy of Star Trek The Original Series - The Complete First Season Remastered ... although I'm thinking Mrs. Axinar would have prefered the Valerie Bertinelli book.

The overall experience of being on The Oprah Winfrey Show was pretty interesting. There were people there from Cincinnati who drove all night to get up to Chicago and were planning on driving straight back.

Now THAT'S dedication.

If you ever get tickets - GET THERE EARLY. There is a pay lot across the street from Harpo Studios that costs $24, but it looks to be about the only safe are to park.

Actually, if you can plan it out, it might be best to try to go to the show in the middle of your trip so you can take a cab in or some such.

Also - no cell phones, cameras or any such stuff. They have you go through a metal detector also.

Although, since we had to be there so early in the morning we did get fed - a muffin, a fruit-yogurt type of thing and a small bottle of juice.

Oh, and make sure you use the facilities before you go on the set - they don't roll breaks in real-time so you might not have a chance to get back in time.

Overall it was a highly fascinating experience that I would recommend if you ever get the chance.

The Valerie Bertinelli segment is scheduled to air next Monday, February 25 and the Willliam Shatner segment is scheduled to air next Tuesday, February 26. Set your DVR's!

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Saturday, February 16, 2008

9/11 Hijackers Still On "No-Fly" List

Ordinarily I haven't given much credence to the "9/11 Truth" gang.

It just seems SO implausible that someone could have rigged the World Trade Center and gotten away with it.

One thing that DID catch my attention in some of the 9/11 conspiracy literature, however, is the claim that many of the named 9/11 hijackers are still alive.

Of course with Elvis being sighted several times daily as gas stations all across America, I didn't even give THAT much credit until I saw this NBC story about people with the same names as Irish terrorists being on the TSA "No-Fly" list.

An investigator was able to get hold of the list and discovered that the 9/11 hijackers are still on the list!

Of course there are obviously some database issues and whatnot, but that REALLY made me sit up and go, "WHAT???!!??".

Oh, yes ... I'm thinking at this point there just MAY be some serious foolishness going on with this event that hasn't completely come to the surface yet ...

Barack Obama Ohio "Mother" Ad

This is the ad that ran I think something on the order of THREE times during the 11 o'clock news on WCPO here in Cincinnati.

According to YouTube it goes back to AT LEAST September 21, 2007.

Doesn't Ohio deserve a NEW ad??

Other than the ad being a bit old as far as political ads go, it's still a great piece, and very representative of the current state of affairs in America.

As his mother lay dying of cancer at 53, her last thoughts were not of her family or even her philosophical fate but rather on HOW MUCH THE WHOLE ORDEAL WAS COSTING.

That's the kind of country we live in - where we make the dying think about how much everything in costing.

How can we sleep at night?

How can we not give this Obama fellow a chance to try to change it?

Oh, and speaking of Barack Obama's ancestors, here's a video about his grandmother in Kenya.

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Thursday, February 14, 2008

Barack Obama "Debate" TV Ad


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Star Trek Delayed Until May 8, 2009!

Dear God, NO!

TrekMovie.com has just gotten wind that the new Star Trek movie is being delayed until May 8, 2009 because Paramount thinks it will do better in the summer.

I don't think I can make it that long ...


Barack Obama On How To Cure The Sub-Prime Mortgage Crisis

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Will The Real Amanda Baggs Please Stand Up?

First of all, in order to head off the barrage of emails this post is almost certainly sure to generate, let me just say that I mean no ill-will to Amanda Baggs as a person. In fact, there was many a time I was at my wits end with The Old Man and she gave me at least some ray of hope that individuals even MORE impaired than him can have something of IMPORT to contribute to the world.

That being the case, there is this matter of "Amanda Baggs" the "phenomenon", and, well, for better or worse, anyone who volunteers to be in the public eye via CNN junkets, web sites, and various public speaking engagements is somewhat subject to scrutiny.

In fact, although I don't think she's seriously considering running for public office, and it would be almost impossible for one human being to adequately digest all of her writings in a single lifetime, I think it is a fair interpretation to say that Amanda advocates a political view that many manifestations of the autism spectrum are not in need of "curing" but "accomodation". That being the case, yes, in the broadest sense, I believe the background of someone expressing such a belief is subject to scrutiny if the expression of that belief has a real possibility of affecting public policy.

Her biggest detractor, if I understand him correctly, has a severely autistic son. The detractor is CONVINCED that thimerosal caused his son's autism and, I'm speculating that he is looking for some BIG bucks from the government for causing this damage.

Of course a person with such a belief would have some motivation to attempt to supress a belief that autism may not be in need of a cure at all, so, in a fashion eerily similar to 9/11 conspiracy theorists, he starts hammering away at certain bits of Amanda's background.

The 9/11 conspiracists keep preaching over and over, "freefall speed" and "pull WTC 7", and Amanda's detractor seems to take an absolute fascination with a video she made about how much trouble she has boiling water, plus some postings she made a number of years ago about being an "elf" from the Tolkein novels, some miscellaneous drug use, and that she apparently was more "functional" when she was younger.

These ideas of course can be gleaned from Amanda's MASSIVE collection of Usenet postings, and I believe these are fair game, but I'm hardly convinced that anyone has yet developed an adequate theory to describe this massive body of work.

Of course that's not enough - he just HAD to bring in someone who claims to have known Amanda as a teenager who proceeded to publish a pretty healthy collection of largely unverifiable information.

Of course THAT prompted someone to get on MY blog who swears up and down to have actually examined Amanda's medical records.

Now part of this story this person is telling on my blog is interesting, and would tend to explain a story that Amanda has written about at times. If I understand it correctly, Amanda had a doctor who was SO insistent that Amanda needed to be institutionalized because of her autism that her parents had no choice but to try to get her diagnosis changed to schizophrenic in order to avoid having her taken away from them.

Well, I'm not sure I'm too convinced of the accuracy or relevancy of most medical records either. Certainly when dealing with mental illness and functional impariments you can get any number of diagnoses. It's certainly possible to get multiple diagnoses of PHYSICAL ailments.

It would probably be utterly impossible to get an objective account of the events, but what might be FASCINATING to explore is the basic public policy consideration - should a person be considered to have a Constitutional right to do what Amanda was doing that had one of her doctors convinced that she needed to be institutionalized.

Of course obtaining an UNBIASED, DETAILED account of those events might prove somewhat difficult ...

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"Digg Nuking"

In an attempt to bring more items of IMPORT to Axinar's, I've been reviewing the RSS feeds of some of the "Social Bookmarking" sites like Digg and Reddit and I have noticed a certain disturbing phenomenon.

It seems that certain REALLY popular stories generate SO much traffic that they cause their source servers to overload.

Case in point was a really neat sounding one tonight called "Dear Senator Hillary Clinton, Please Step Down. You divide." But when you click on the link you get a really nice message from some outfit called "BellaWebHosting" that screams at you: "This Account Has Been Suspended".

Now, this is not a new phenomenon. It used to occur quite frequently when stories got picked up on Slashdot and they would crash servers. They called it, "The Slashdot Effect". I'm not entirely sure why but I haven't seen that happen in a while.

Now what's interesting of course is that this "Dear Senator Hillary Clinton" story only has 725 "diggs". Now, if this were only 725 hits, even most small servers could handle it, but I'm getting the impression that there are something on the order of 10 to 100 hits per digg. Of course no mortal server could survive that.

On the other hand, I suppose this is a reminder that this technology in some ways is still very much in its infancy, and, yes, boys and girls, it looks like we may actually start having to figure out a way to start peer-to-peer hosting BLOGS for the love of God ...

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Telling White From Black

There's an interesting thread going on over on The Cincinnati Beacon called "Obama is not black" where our good buddy The Dean of Cincinnati seems to be saying that its somewhat incorrect to refer to Barack Obama as "Black" as he has one parent who would ordinarily be considered "Black" - in fact, African, another who would be considered "White". In the comment stream, some of which have been deleted at this point, we discover possibly the true motivation of this post, as, if I understand him correctly, The Dean is the father of a "multi-racial" child who he believes should not be compelled to pick one race over the other. In fact, it sounds like he is saying that to force his child to call himself "Black" completely negates The Dean's existence.

It's a terribly complicated subject.

Now, when I was growing up in the Northside neighborhood of Cincinnati, the races were considered so separate they were almost like genders. "White" was the "opposite" of "Black". Occasionally someone would come on the scene who was "bi-racial" or "mixed", and back then that's pretty much how we identified individuals of visually mixed ancestry.

Something seemed to start shifting in the '80's, however. Back in slavery times there seemed to be a notion that "one drop of Black blood" made a person Black and in a pejorative sense. Somewhere in the last 20 or so years, however, having some distant ancestor of an ethnicity other than "White" became a kind of badge of honor - something to be proud of.

There was a movie, however, called Brewster's Millions where it first hit me though how much the notions we have of "Black" and "White" can blend. There was an actress in that movie named Lonette McKee who I swear to GOD pretty much all the way through the movie I thought was White until the way she said ONE line - "That's more than alot of hard working people make in a year ..." - got me to thinking, "Oh wow ... she's Black." I of course later did some research, and, yes, she considers herself Black.

From a "genetic" standpoint of course it's quite complicated. Henry Louis Gates, Jr., head of African-American studies at Harvard University has BOTH sex-linked genes from northern Europe. His nuclear DNA tests as 50% European and 50% sub-Saharan African.

Oprah Winfrey tests as having 1/8 Native American nuclear DNA.

Both of these individuals, in this culture, would unabiguously be considered "Black".

The fact of the matter is that almost everyone who would be considered "White" or "Black" in early 21st century North America would find genetic markers that would constitute an admixture of 16th century northwestern European, sub-Saharan African, and indigenous North American.

It ultimately shouldn't matter all that much. Perhaps someone might even want to consider it some sort of element of pride to be a Black man packing R1b genes ...

Monday, February 11, 2008

Anonymous Vs. Scientology - This Says It All

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"Anonymous" Staged Scientology Protest Sunday

Looks like the Anonymous group did get in some good protests against the Church of Scientology in at least Los Angeles and Phoenix.

They were wearing masks, purple latex gloves and were dressed head-to-toe in black.

The Scientologists described Anonymous as "cyber-terrorists".

I have to admit I probably could not have made such stuff up for a movie.

It will of course be interesting to see how this all turns out ...

Anonymous vs. Scientology - DeathBoy

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WCPO's Hagit Limor Discovers Anthem De Facto Doesn't Cover Mental Illness

My good buddy Hagit Limor from WCPO ran another excellent piece tonight on the fact that, pretty much, Anthem Blue Cross / Blue Shield de facto no longer covers mental illness in this area (video here).

Pretty much what they did a few months back is lower what they will pay mental health professionals SO much that most doctors can no longer afford to accept Anthem. When Bridgepointe bolted I KNEW there was a serious problem.

Pretty much if you have Anthem's insurance there are virtually no providers left who will see you, and the few that will have waiting lists on the order of 4+ months. This is NOT a good situation AT ALL if you or a family member are in need of mental health attention.

As Anthem refused to be interviewed for this story, what Hagit Limor could not discover for the purposes of this story is the WHY behind this behavior on Anthem's part.

It's certainly no secret that insurance companies all around the country have tried to dodge providing mental health care. Many states have had to FORCE insurance companies to provide coverage - so-call "mental health parity" bills.

I'm quite curious as to why this would be the case. Health insurance companies have done many other things to reduce or elimate coverage - raising deductibles and co-pays, challenging claims, refusing coverage on the assumption that many people will not appeal, and a whole host of other ridiculous behavior, but they REALLY seem to have it in for mental health coverage.

Mental health care is expensive. No question about it.

Say, if you have high blood pressure you can get away with seeing your G.P. maybe once or twice a year for 15 minutes.

But if your cheese has even SLIGHTLY dislodged from its cracker, you may be looking at DOZENS of 30 - 60 minute visits over the course of a year and some VERY expensive medications.

However, sometimes I wonder if it's not the financial reasons that health insurance companies fight mental health coverage so strongly.

Sometimes I just wonder if it might be ideological.

Sometimes I wonder if those who call the shots for these companies just might be fans of Mike Huckabee's friend Bill Gothard and his REALLY bizarre ideas that "mental illness", as we currently understand it, is merely a lack of "personal responsibility".

I suppose we may never know.

But, hopefully Hagit Limor's investigations and getting her research to Governor Ted Strickland will AT LEAST get Anthem busted down to its shorts for advertising a group of doctors on its web site that are supposedly "in-network" that really isn't ...

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Anonymous Anti-Scientology Video For 2-10-08

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WCPO Running Follow-Up To Anthem Mental Health Story Tonight At 6pm

My good buddy Hagit Limor was nice enough to tip me off that WCPO will be running a follow-up to the "Anthem Mental Health" story they ran back in July and that was covered here.

Good heavens - the Mainstream Media actually READS Axinar's.

Our favorite ConspiracyNut will be alarmed.

The Malaysian contingent however I believe will be impressed. :)

Ms. Limor tells me this follow-up story running tonight at 6pm on WCPO, Channel 9 will be "even stronger than the original".

Whether she means to say that the smell of abject greed will be even stronger or that the nausea induced on the part of the viewers will be even stronger upon learning about even MORE penny-pinching tactics on the part of the health insurance industry that jeopardize people's health, sanity, and solvency she didn't say, but this ought to be a good one.

My DVR is set ... now let's hope Time-Warner can keep the thing running until then ... :)

On that topic:
Nine Secrets Health Insurers Don't Want You to Know - Health.com

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Saturday, February 9, 2008

Star Trek: The Ultimate Computer Remastered Effects Reel

This has got to be the EARLIEST anyone has gotten a ST:Remastered Effects Reel up, but, after all, this is the 2nd most effects-intensive Trek episode ever made ... WAY awesome ...

It's supposed to be on WCPO tonight at 1:05am if it doesn't get ...

Oh, shut up, Dean ... :)

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Two New Anonymous Anti-Scientology Videos Released

I would have flat out missed these if I hadn't finally figured out how to deal with Digg RSS feeds ... :)

Apparently the Anonymous forces have changed YouTube logins AGAIN ... although when you're dealing with an organization as sue-happy as the Scientologists I suppose you don't have much of a choice.

If I understand the 2nd video correctly, they have something of IMPORT planned for TOMORROW.

This could get interesting.

Question is whether or not they will change YouTube logins AGAIN and I will end up MISSING it ...

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Beef Hamburgers BANNED At New York Public Schools Due to Animal Cruelty

A video produced by an organization OTHER than PETA has caused the New York Public Schools to BAN beef hamburgers until conditions can be improved at the Westland/Hallmark Meat Co. meat factory in California.

The Humane Society has a whole collection of videos showing SPECTACULARLY how the "corporate mentality" leads to some REALLY deplorable treatment of animals.

You see, what many people don't realize is that this is how they would like to treat PEOPLE.

You see, the drive for profit generally COMPLETELY deactivates ANY tendency to have a shred of respect for living beings in these corporate types and these videos are PERFECT examples of that.

Although it looks like the Humane Society itself is in trouble on this one. If I understand this correctly, they were sitting on this information about the cruelty going on at the California plant for MONTHS before they turned it over to the USDA. Of course it sounds to me like the Humane Society was investigating the USDA as well for not paying enough attention to what is going on at these plants.

For the moment, the Westland plant is shut down pending their presenting the USDA with a plan for how they are going to prevent such horrendous behavior in the future.

Reports of any sort of hostile takeover attempt of the Human Society by PETA I imagine are greatly exaggerated ...

Friday, February 8, 2008

Chelsea "Pimped Out" Comment May Cancel Ohio Debate

In the latest incident of Ohio having to suffer on the account of someone not associated with the state running his mouth, some IDIOT from MSNBC named David Shuster described Chelsea Clinton as being "pimped out" by apparently being forced to call various people, including Democratic Party "superdelegates" in a attempt to save her mother's Presidential campaign.

David Shuster has been suspended from MSNBC for the comment.

Clinton communications director Howard Wolfson got a group of reporters on the horn today and said this just might put the kibosh on a Clinton/Obama debate scheduled for February 26th at Cleveland State University because MSNBC is sponsoring that debate.

Fortunately another debate in Ohio sponsored by CNN is being planned for February 27th.

Will the 2/27 debate be in Cincinnati?

Will The Dean of Cincinnati moderate?

Will a living soul even CARE by that time????

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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Second Life Den Of Terrorism?

It's a foregone conclusion that "security types" have always had a bit of a love/hate relationship with computers. Certainly computer power has allowed outfits like the NSA to make sense of billions and billions of monitored phone calls zinging around the world. But it also seems like computer networks also make them very, very paranoid.

The latest is that some new outfit called Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity has gotten it in their heads that Second Life may be a den of terrorist activity.

You have GOT to be kidding.

I mean - I suppose it's possible.

There are ways to move real money around in Second Life.

Some of the people who hang out on there quite a bit more than I do tell me there was a pretty bad gambling issue going on until recently, so most of the users have moved away from that into gratuitous avatar sex.

Remind Renegade Evolution to do a post on Second Life porn while I'm thinking about it ... :)

But ... give me a break.

Do you have any idea what KINDS of people hang out in Second Life?

Well, first you ahve a certain bald, Jewish Vulcan in a Deep Space Nine uniform. :)

Then you have whole throngs of überfrum Lubavicher rabbis who have to fight off anti-semites while teaching Torah.

THEN you have a group of nuts who like to have their avatars jumping all over each other whilst in the guise of Japanese "Hentai" characters. This den of iniquity is guarded by a half-man half-dragon that looks like Sardo Numspa from The Golden Child BTW.

Let's not even talk about some of the users who use ANIMALS as avatars. They call them "furries".

There IS a fair amount of real money floating around Second Life, most of it, so near as I can tell, going towards "anatomically correct" additions to avatars.

This paper from IARPA says, "Unfortunately, what started out as a benign environment where people would congregate to share information or explore fantasy worlds is now offering the opportunity for religious/political extremists to recruit, rehearse, transfer money, and ultimately engage in information warfare or worse with impunity."

Oh give me a break.

I suppose it's possible, but I think most of the people on there are way too busy finding ways to get virtually laid to be bothered with Islamist terrorists ...


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Barack Obama "Chorus" Video

I STILL think they ought to change the chant to "So Say We All!"

"We are the ones we've been waiting for."

Sounds positively Reform Jewish, doesn't it? :)


California Voting Irregularities

Here we go again.

Of course we've got this issue with the parties pretty much falling apart and arch-conservatives threatening to vote for Obama or Hillary.

Looks like there were a pretty good collection of Democrats who tried to vote for Ron Paul in California by switching parties and they were denied.

There are actually several supports of suppression of Ron Paul voters including one where California Ron Paul supporters were trying to get together affidavits a few weeks ago to be able to investigate expected fraud in California.

Yep ... something fishy is going on ...

Euros Being Accepted In New York

My favorite Conspiracy Nut friend is always ranting and raving about how the world is about to end because of the collapse of the U.S. Dollar.

Turns on she may be onto something.

Several shops in New York City are reported to have begun accepting Euros for purchases.

Now there were some stories floating around that some fast food joints in border town in Texas and Arizona were taking Mexican currency, but ... WOW!

Turns out that the increasingly weak U.S. dollar is bringing in European tourists by the boatload and the merchants in New York have discovered they can do just as well but taking the Euros and then converting them over at their local banks.

Some merchants don't even bother to exchange them - they spend them in Paris.

Yep ... this is a little scary.

Could the U.S. Dollar really be on the way out at a viable currency?

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Republicans For Barack Obama

First you have Rush Limbaugh basically hinting that he's so upset with John McCain's liberal leanings that he's going to be inclined to vote for the Democratic nominee so that the presumably horrible things that will happen to the country under liberal rule will happen "on the Democrat's watch".

Now you apparently have Susan Eisenhower, granddaughter of President Eisenhower, a self-described life-long Republican, campaigning for Barack Obama straight away.

Wow ... would you have thought it would come to this?

One does wonder how to interpret all this.

Of course there was a flip of ideology between the Democrats and Republicans once before. Just remember that during and immediately after the Civil War the Democrats were in favor of slavery and the Republicans were in favor of freedom.

Of course there doesn't seem to be a swap going on this time. Both parties are leaning more liberal in SPITE of these arch-conservatives making so much noise.

Could it finally be that people have just finally gotten sick and tired of the plain meanness and utter disregard for human life and dignity associated with such types as Bush and Cheney?


And, if so, I think it's a good thing ...


Monday, February 4, 2008

Being Fat And Smoking CHEAPER In The Long Run Than Being Healthy

Here's one that will probably make you fall over ...

A Dutch study reached the conclusion that, over the long run, fat people and smokers actually cost LESS to treat because, although they have much more serious health conditions and earlier than healthy people, healthy people live so much longer they accumulate much higher overall medical costs.

The overall results in terms of average lifespan and medical costs after age 20:

Healthy people: 84 years, $417,000

Obese people: 80 years, $371,000 (interesting as both of my maternal grandparents were big as battlestars and died at 80)

Smokers: 77 years, $326,000

So there you go, people ... if you want to solve the Medicare crisis, better start hitting Mickey D's and lighting up ...


NBC's Tim Russert To Speak At Plum Street Temple Fundraiser

For those of you of the Gentile gland, and for those of you who have never been to Cincinnati, we have a true masterpiece of Judaica here in town called "The Plum Street Temple".

It comes from an era when the Reform movement was trying to make the statement, "This country is my Israel, this city is my Jerusalem and this building is my Temple."

Up until that time, traditional Jewish thought was that any Jewish settlements outside of Eretz Yisroel ("The Land Of Israel") were merely temporary and that, when Moshiach ("The Messiah") came, that all Jews would be instantly whisked back to Israel.

On top of that, historically Jewish communities were subject to pogroms (mass property damage and other abject forms of terrorism) and outright explusions from the country.

Something was different about America.

It seemed like a place that Jews could call a permanent home.

Particularly Cincinnati for some reason.

So they built a structure that, in some ways, resembles a Cathedral more than a traditional shul ("synagogue").

It also has elements that, on the outside, make it look something like a mosque, and that would take an hour to explain.

The building is wicked old though. It needs tons of maintenance, so apparently none other than Tim Russert, managing editor and moderator of NBC's "Meet the Press" is going to be at the Plum Street Temple on May 1st, speaking on the subject of his views of Washington politics as part of a fundraiser to collect money towards the restoration of the building.

It will cost you $75 to get in and the event starts at 7:15pm.

Get there early.

Parking goes fast at events down there.

It is also quite close to the location where Kabaka Oba was shot.

Any questions about the event can be directed to (513) 793-2556.

If you don't HAVE $75, but would still like to contribute to the restoration of the Plum Street Temple building, you can make a donation for as little as $5 through the K.K. B'nai Yeshurun - Wise Temple donation page or send a real check or money order to:

Isaac M. Wise Temple
8329 Ridge Road
Cincinnati, Ohio 45236

More information on the history of the Plum Street Temple can be found here on the Wise Temple site.

Now who wants to contribute $75 so *I* can get in?? :)

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Sunday, February 3, 2008

CareerBuilder "Follow Your Heart" SuperBowl Spot

CareerBuilder.com Super Bowl Commercial

Add to My Profile | More Videos

They CAN'T be serious ...

And people say *I* do things in bad taste ...

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Ted Kennedy Speaking Spanish At East L.A. Barack Obama Rally

Deeply distrubing ...

And what I REALLY find interesting is that the offical Barack Obama campaign video of the same event CUTS OUT Ted Kennedy's mangling the Spanish language beyond belief ...


Saturday, February 2, 2008

Third Anonymous Anti-Scientology Video Released

The Anonymous Scientology protest group has released a third video listing 22 rules for their upcoming "real-life" protests of the Church of Scientology including such stuff as staying on public property, not getting angry, not asking for badge numbers from law enforcement officers unless being abused, don't go in alone, etc., etc.

I'll tell you one thing ... these guys do sound organized.

The scenes used for the video itself has changed a bit - flyovers of cities mainly.

Yes - yes, indeed I am looking forward to seeing if this bunch has any real effect because, if they do, there are some issues WAY more pressing than the Scientologists that could stand some attention ...

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Friday, February 1, 2008

"It Is Important To be RIGHT On Day One"

Oh yes ...

I am about a half centimeter away from giving this fellow a LARGE amount of money ...


Microsoft Offers To Buy Yahoo - OH NO!

So I wake up this morning and what's the first thing I hear?

Yes - Microsoft wants to buy Yahoo.

For $44.6 billion.

It's a hostile takeover attempt by Microsoft to challenge Google.

The first thought that crossed my mind of course was, "Oh no! No more chat rooms!"

As some of you may be aware, Microsoft has been trying on its own for a number of years to challenge a great deal of the functionality of Yahoo.

Search engine? Microsoft comes up with Live.com.

Email? Now of course this is significant because Yahoo is, by far, the one web site in teh world with the most traffic and over HALF of that traffic is for email.

Well, a number of years ago Microsoft acquired Hotmail and they have also now added @live.com email addresses.

Now, this particular product from Microsoft is not necessarily THAT bad.

They have a web interface SOMETHING like Outlook, and, I have to admit, they have a really neat "Outlook Express" client program called Windows Live Mail that will let you work with your @hotmail.com, @live.com, and your POP3/IMAP accessible accounts.

Microsoft also tried to take on AOL a number of years ago and invented MSN in the process. They used to have a REALLY awesome collection of chat rooms (including a Cincinnati room), but I suppose when they found out about that the chat rooms were apparently mostly being used by pedophiles they decided to COMPLETELY discontinue the chat rooms.

Yahoo was faced with a similar problem, but they just decided to stop user-named rooms and increase monitoring (sending all the poor pedophiles to IRC or something of the sort?).

Yahoo also, of course, has a really awesome collection of online games.

So I do wonder how a Microsoft-Yahoo merger would play out.

Actually, considering how many overlapping services the two have, would such a merger pass regulatory muster?

Would the Yahoo chat rooms survive?

Would Yahoo Mail be merged into HotMail/Live.com or would it happen the other way around?

Yes ... this could be a deeply, deeply disturbing merger ...

The problems of merging Microsoft and Yahoo - Guardian Unlimited
Microsoft-Yahoo deal could reshape Internet - MSNBC
Microsoft-Yahoo deal will pass antitrust muster, say analysts - Computerworld

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