Monday, June 30, 2003
On the news last night, there was a bit about Bush's visit to California on Friday. Based on the big-mouths in Hollywood, you'd think that everybody is bleeding heart, feeling the pain of the under-priviledged in their big, gated estates.
Not so, Dennis Miller and Kelsey Grammar. They both participated in his Los Angeles fundraiser. I had no idea about Kelsey, but now I know why I've always liked him.
Why am I always surprised (or relieved) to find out that there are actually Republicans in Hollywood?
A case against affirmative action
This is why I continue to go back to Vinny's blog. These thoughts aren't so insignificant.
All the champagne bottles are popping, and the media are just thrilled. There has been a cease-fire called in Israel!
Funny thing: I didn't realize that the terrorist groups were party to these suicidal road-map talks. The media reports are brilliant. They have marvelled at the Palestinian organizations' (read: Hamas, Islamic Jihad, PFLP, AMB, etc.) generous surrender of their suicide belts. They have become poets in describing the huge historic step this has been, because it certainly has never happened before, right? And one journalist reminded us that we should not be comfortable yet, as the IDF still controls much of the Palestinian territories. You know, the territories that Israel captured when her loving neighbors threatened her existence? Those "Palestinian" territories are still crawling with the IDF, which, you know, might inflame the otherwise innocent Palestinians who would be studying to become doctors, but instead are learning the art of bomb-making.
So now begins a countdown. I guarantee that this worthless, meaningless hudna will not last (hell, it's already failed). Those terrorist organizations that our media love to legitimize are simply cleaning out their guns and putting their belts under the bed for now, while accumulating more ammunition and explosives materials for the imminent continuation of their Jihad. This has happenend before, and is just part and parcel of the never-ending charade of the Palestinians who want nothing less than everything. They continue to play the Americans and other westerners for fools, and the media are eating it up.
Let's not forget that, according to many, especially the bleeding hearts who think that Israel is the big bully on the playground, it's aaaaaaaall Israel's fault. Because they are the "strong" ones. Because they should be taking the punches, while trying to understand why they are being punched. Because they are but a teeeny-weeeeny percentage in terms of the size and number of their foes.... oh, wait, that's a moot point to the bleeding hearts.
Our friends at the Palestinian/Islamist terrorist mouthpiece Al-Guardian, in Jew-loathing Europe, have published yet another glowing, unbiased piece:
This could be considered satire, only it's "real" journalism [all emphasis added]:
This is typical reporting from the media, and the Guardian is living up to its own standards. As long as the situation is reported in this manner, people will never really understand the real issues. Notice how anything that Israel does is met with cynicism. Nowhere in this article do they mention the murder of hundreds of innocent Israeli civilians, but every chance they get, they mention the "plight of the Palestinians".
There will be no peace until the PA cracks down (with a very heavy hand) on those terrorist groups, instead of just the usual "negotiation". There will be no peace as long as Arafat continues to undermine all efforts. We can hope that his time will soon be up, either by a natural death or a bullet to the head. And there will be no peace as long as the "civilized" world continues to expect Israel to negotiate with those who kill her innocent citizens, or as long as the world thinks they know what's best and continues to pressure her into doing things that we would never do. That also goes with condemning Sharon for doing exactly what we are doing in Afghanistan and Iraq right now. Hypocrisy at its worst.
Still pessimistic. The countdown begins.
Friday, June 27, 2003
Not even trying to hide it
From Naomi Ragen:
Dear Amit Duvshani,
Dear Dr. Wilkie,
Welcome, Mr. President!
So honored to have our great President in our neck of the woods today. His visit has shown me that I'm not the only one on this crazy left coast who likes and respects him.
Thursday, June 26, 2003
C'mon! Get to it, America!
How can the United States ever achieve world domination if our birth rate keeps falling? It's a bit of a bummer that our country has a lower birth rate than most third-world countries, but that seems to be the case of most industrialized countries vs. non-industrialized countries. And it makes sense.
Some interesting points from the CDC's report:
These points are obviously followed by my humble opinion. It looks like there is some good news in this report, and some not-so-great news. Let's just hope that the US is heading back towards good ol' family values, where parents actually raise the kids they have, instead of having them just to fulfill some image they find necessary to "fit in" and sending them to daycare.
A house, two cars, and 2.5 kids: the American dream.
Wednesday, June 25, 2003
Tour de Lance
In two sittings, I just finished Lance Armstrong's book It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life. All I can say is, Wow. It's not the kind of book you read for literary fulfillment. It's just an amazing story that had me questioning why and how things happen the way they do. I believe in God, and I believe He has a plan for all of us, and we're just living it out. As human beings, we all want to know the meaning behind everything, yet many times there simply is no explanation. He can't explain why he survived, and after he was cured his doctors "came out" and told him that he was the worst case they had ever seen, that they felt that his chances of survival were somewhere less than 5%. Scary stuff that would have made the average human being curl up and give in. Not Lance, and as far as he's concerned, not anybody.
Good story, and it ended with just his first Tour victory. All the more amazing that he will race for his fifth straight Tour victory next month, and already has his sights on a record sixth.
Tuesday, June 24, 2003
Yesterday I was listening to the usual radio news station, when they reported on the Supreme Court decision on affirmative action in college admissions. As usual, they spoke with a professor from UC Berkeley's Boalt School of Law (it's always somebody from either Cal or Stanford in these parts.)
I couldn't believe my ears. First of all, the Supreme Court decision has no effect here in California because we passed Proposition 209 in 1996, which bans the state and local governments' use of affirmative action in education, hiring and contracting (kind of shocking, coming from the left coast, eh?). So the law professor (or whatever he was) applauded the SC decision, but obviously felt that Prop 209 was bad for California. He actually said that they aspire to make their University the best with DIVERSITY and Prop 209 has lead to less diversity (interpretation: less diversity = worse school.)
So I have a couple of questions. First, isn't a school's worth based on its academic merits, not the color of the student body? Isn't Howard University a highly respected school because of the academics, not the fact that the University is a traditionally black University? I honestly believe that a school should not factor in race when deciding who to admit. Well, I believe that anybody who meets the standards of admission should be admitted, regardless of where they come from or what they look like. I didn't have the grades to get into Cal or Stanford, and I had to live with that and went to one of the Cal State Universities. If you don't have the grades or the SATs, then you don't get in. Simple. There are plenty of Junior Colleges where you can take a series of courses designed to qualify you for admission into UC, State or private schools, so it's not like the opportunity isn't there.
One more question: isn't affirmative action flawed in that it looks solely at race? I believe that socio-economics are more of a factor in academic achievement than skin color. One can argue that blacks or hispanics are disproportionately living within poverty, but there are plenty of whites who are, too. Do white people in the lower economic classes get any kind of preference when applying to Universities, because they had "limited" academic opportunity? Does affirmative action apply to them? Perhaps Universities should start looking at addresses and zip codes instead of skin color or ethnicity. Wouldn't that be a way to give ALL Americans an opportunity for education? Isn't affirmative action supposed to be about giving opportunity to those who otherwise wouldn't have it, solely because of the under-achievement of the schools in their communities?
Fact is, in this day and age you'd be hard-pressed to find a school that would NOT admit a student because he is not white, and if you remove the check-box ethnicity question from the application, the playing field is level. An applicant's address may provide much more insight into their education opportunity than a check-box. Besides, I know several minority students who checked "white, non hispanic" on their applications, because they wanted to get in on their academic merits, not their ethnicity. I'd probably feel the same way.
Fuel cell cars are coming
In typical Honda fashion, they are delivering the first EPA-approved fuel cell vehicle, the Honda FCX. Considering the questionable benefits of fuel cell engines, not to mention the exaggeration of global warming, one has to wonder if these cars will ever become mainstream. By the time they are a viable, affordable option, we'll probably be well into a global cooling period. It seems like the only good alternative to this point has been the hybrid, and auto makers should run with those by making "normal" hybrid models (e.g. the hybrid Civic). I'll stick with my 30+mpg, LEV Civic for now.
Saturday, June 21, 2003
Palestinian living conditions = Warsaw ghetto
A self-hating Jew, who is also a British legislator, has compared the Palestinian living conditions in Gaza to those of Jews in the Warsaw ghetto. Two British lawmakers compare Gaza to Warsaw ghetto
Legislator Oona King of the governing Labor Party said Thursday that the Gaza conditions are "the same in nature but not extent" as the notorious walled ghetto in Poland's capital, where Jews were corralled and oppressed by Adolf Hitler's Nazis.
I don't recall the IDF corralling the Palestinians into their filthy territories. Last I checked, they started building the wall in the past three years, as Israel's citizens have been subjected to constant terrorist attacks.
"No government should be behaving like that — least of all a Jewish government," said King, who represents the east London district of Bethnal Green and Bow and is herself Jewish.
A couple of thoughts:
~ Thank goodness she astutely pointed out that the JEWS aren't rounding 'em up and throwing them into the ovens! Heaven knows everybody will draw that conclusion when you make comparisons to the Warsaw ghetto, and, if it's apartheid, Nazi Israel, everybody will believe it.
~ When a country tries in vain to stop terrorist attacks on its citizens, every method should be considered. Jews in Poland were rounded up and placed behind the wall because they were Jewish. Israel is building the wall in yet another attempt to keep out terrorists. Yet somehow, Israel's attempts to protect herself from terrorists are always worse (humiliating! demeaning! apartheid!) than the terrorist strikes themselves. Just as Jenin was a "massacre", and the Passover terrorist attack that prompted it was a quickly forgotten "militant" attack, Israeli blood just doesn't deserve the same kind of outrage or attention as Palestinian blood. Israel actions = BAD! Palestinian actions = "well, uh, er, can you BLAME them?"
~ Palestinians can't get in or out without scrutiny because THEIR FELLOW "COUNTRYMEN" ARE KILLING ISRAELIS. They've been using the open borders against Israel ad nauseum, so Israel had to seal them up. That's the nature of the beast. Don't blame Israel for its attempts to protect its citizenry, blame those who forced Israel to clamp down on its borders. The "squeeze" didn't exist a mere three years ago.
~ Final thought. This comparison to the Warsaw ghetto is very typical of those who don't like Israel and sympathize with the folks who bring war upon themselves. Turning the group that was victim to Hitler's atrocities into the group that is now inflicting the atrocities has been a debating point of the Israel-loathers since the birth of Israel, especially since the Six Day War. (How astonishing that a Jewish government would behave this way!) Taking the facts into consideration (I know, facts phooey), it's like comparing apples to oranges. The Jews of Warsaw were not engaged in "armed struggle" (two can play this game) against Hitler's government. Quite the contrary-- they were law-abiding, contributing members of Polish and German society who were rounded up solely for the star on their arm band.
Some things will never change.
Taking care of business
The IDF have killed a Hamas terrorist leader, Abdullah Kawasme, who allegedly planned the terrorist bombing of a bus that killed 16 innocent civilians in Jerusalem last week. Of course, in the tradition of our media here, Reuters refers to him as a "militant", Hamas as a "militant group".
In other news, as Israel continues to do its part in the so-called "Road Map" (-- To Hell) by dismantling more settlements, another Israeli was killed, three injured, in the West Bank yesterday, for the high crime of being a Jew and driving in a Palestinian area. The "militant group" Hamas sent their well-wishes soon after. In living up to their obligations set forth in the RMTH, Palestinians have made the following good-faith efforts to promote peace in the area: left two bomb-laden bicycles at Israeli checkpoints, fired mortars into a Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip, killed a grocery store owner, fired a rocket into Israel, and killed a 7-year old girl who was traveling in a car with her family. Abu Mazen is cracking down on the rogue "militant groups" by offering them positions in the Palestinian government. Yeah, I can see exactly where this roadmap is leading.
Cait and I have talked about how it would be great if Israel was located among friendlier neighbors who support her, such as the good ol' US of A. We could leave the Islamist thuggeries to destroy each other while we hit the dance clubs and cafes in peace with our new Israeli friends. Alas, it isn't to be. But Cait (who lives in Texas) says that Israel would be welcome in her part of Texas, and has created a flag for "IsraTex". As lovely as it would be to bring Israel to our friendly shores, I say send some gun-totin' Texans to Israel to take care of bid'ness alongside them. ~sigh~
Friday, June 20, 2003
Wednesday, June 18, 2003
Sh*t on South Park
Last night we came happened upon South Park on TV. On the bottom left hand side of the screen was a meter which was counting the number of times the word "sh*t" was spoken. It landed somewhere over 160. We were totally drawn in because of our total confusion. Since when is it okay to say "sh*t" on TV? I must have been sleeping, 'cause I thought it was still on the BAD list. I'm actually surprised that the words "ass" and "bitch" are kosher for TV and radio, but I'm a prude like that.
This episode may have been a repeat, but I was totally shocked. We don't have HBO, Showtime, etc. This was regular cable tv. Very odd.
Wednesday, June 11, 2003
"This is consecrated land, our land of ours, now and forever, from the cradle to the grave... we with the help of God will meet next time in Jerusalem, because we are fighting in order to bring the victory to our prophets, every baby, every child, every man, every women, and every older person, and all the youngsters, we will sacrifice ourselves for our holy places, and we will establish the guard on them, and are prepared to give 70 of our martyrs for every martyr of theirs in this campaign, because this is our holy land. We will continue to fight on this blessed land, and I call to you, remain steadfast, no one will succeed in dividing us, to remove us from this holy land."
"We can forgive the Arabs for killing our children. We cannot forgive them for forcing us to kill their children.... We will only have peace with the Arabs when they love their children more than they hate us."
QUESTION: Mr. Secretary, do you accept the idea of “hudna” – a sort of a cease-fire between the Palestinian terror organizations, or do you support what Prime Minister Sharon is demanding from the Palestinians: a total disarming and dismantling of these terror organizations?
Abu Mazen is "negotiating" a "truce" with this murderous swine:
Rantisi: We will drive all Jews out of Palestine
Okay, let me get this straight. "Palestine" to these swine means all of Israel, from the river Jordan to the Mediterranean Sea. Let's make that very clear. Rantisi considers himself a "civilian". That's amusing. He's a "civilian" like Saddam was a "civilian". These guys consider the attempt on Rantisi a declaration of war? So then what the hell was the murder of five IDF soldiers, huh?! You know, the Palestinian terrorist who entered the compound dressed as an Israeli soldier and killed five of them just as Israel was beginning to dismantle settlements. The five soldiers who were murdered after Israel released known Palestinian terrorists who had Israeli blood on their hands.
So while Israel engages in these activities which are clearly not in her best interests, for the sake of the "road map", Palestinians continue to kill Israelis. Mazen refuses to crack down on Hamas (clearly he could easily arrest Rantisi), so that leaves Israel to do their dirty work.
Oh, but I forgot: Israel is supposed to take it in the chin over and over again, for the sake of "peace", and if they (heaven forbid) respond to violence against their people, Israel is the one derailing the "peace" process.
Okay, I got it now.
Tuesday, June 10, 2003
So where was the "rap" when Palestinian terrorists, dressed as IDF soldiers, killed five IDF soldiers? Where is the "rap" for Abbas sitting on his laurels doing exactly NOTHING while Israel releases Jew-killers and takes down settlements? Why the "rap" for targeting the heads of known terrorist organizations, while we call for the heads of al Qaeda and Iraq, DEAD OR ALIVE?
Can the US be any more hypocritical than we are being right now? Hey Israel, release the terrorists you have locked up, but never mind that we will never do the same. Hey Israel, negotiate with known terrorists, but hope you don't notice we refuse to do the same. Hey Israel, don't target terrorist leaders for assassination, but watch us while we drop bunker-busting bombs where Saddam *might* be. I fully support the methods we have used to deal with terrorists, and I expect that we would support another nation to handle terrorists with an iron fist also.
The hypocrisy of my country at this moment is astounding. Bush needs to stop consulting with Powell on this one, and bring in Rummy. I'm disgusted.
Smells Like Teen Spirit
I still remember where I was and what I was doing (homework on my bed in college) the first time I heard that song-- I had to know who it was right then. Can't think of any other song where I remember the first time hearing it. In my little world, I have to agree with VH1 on #1, but I have to wonder about "I Will Always Love You" and "Like a Virgin" being in the top ten.
The top 10:
Friday, June 06, 2003
Spoiled rich men
People who know me know that I am a big fan of Oracle and its playboy CEO (not). After four years at a rival database company, I have been effectively brainwashed, though I truly believe that Oracle has an inferior product to that of my former company, which has since been purchased by a software Goliath. I also happen to like PeopleSoft, because they were started in my home town and have managed to succeed in a highly cutthroat industry. So the news that Oracle has made a bid for a hostile takeover of PeopleSoft is beyond interesting; it's a story with several sub-stories. The best part of this news are the lines coming from PeopleSoft's CEO, Craig Conway, who spent several years working for Larry Ellison at Oracle. You can see the love between the two based on Conway's remarks, which have been hilariously in-your-face:
PeopleSoft CEO Comments On Oracle Offer
I'll second the "atrociously bad behavior" comment.
Oracle Bid for PeopleSoft Ups CEO Rivalry
I'll be watching this closely as it unfolds. Amusing.
Welcome to America
People who were born and raised in this great country should know better than to think that their religious pseudo-laws trump our nation's laws.
After hearing three days of testimony last week, Circuit Judge Janet C. Thorpe ruled that Sultaana Freeman's right to free exercise of religion would not be infringed by having to show her face on her license.
Thank you, Judge Thorpe, for helping the state in their duty to protect us from criminals. After all, Ms. Freeman isn't exactly a beacon of innocence, now is she? Especially considering how she has used her cries for "religious freedom" before.
When people fight like this about keeping their identity hidden, there is more to it than just religion. There is usually an ulterior motive.
On a side note: she claims that she needs to drive to care for her two children. I have to wonder why somebody who is obviously an unfit parent has two children. One has to assume that they are her biological children, as leaving foster kids in her care would be crazy. But that would also be par for the course when it comes to child welfare in the state of Florida.
Thursday, June 05, 2003
Militant or terrorist?
Terrorist [brought up 'terrorism']
What is "terror"?
Just wanted to clear up any confusion, and to point out that the media are incorrectly using the term "militant" where they should be using "terrorist".
[definitions courtesy of Merriam-Webster online]
Tuesday, June 03, 2003
All I've been reading for the past couple of days is "Israel Releases Palestinian Prisoners" and "Sharon to Pledge to Scrap Some Settlements." So while Israel is committing suicide, what have the Palestinians done? Where are the arrests of terrorists in the territories? Have they released the prisoners who have been declared "collaborators" for assisting the Israelis in finding terrorists? These prisoners are tortured and held indefinitely without so much as a trial, and when they do get a "trial", it's usually a half hour sham. This is if they are not killed and then hung for dismemberment in their town squares.
This road map is sickening. I just can't believe what we are demanding of Israel. They are pressured to make concessions that we in the US would never even consider. Can you imagine the US releasing all the detainees at Gitmo as a "goodwill gesture", especially if they were terrorists who had resided at our border with Canada or Mexico? It's ludicrous.
And I ask again: what have the Palestinians done, while the Israelis have been pressured into accomodating these touching scenes:
SHARM EL-SHEIK, Egypt - Arab leaders, meeting with President Bush as he plunged into the labyrinth of Mideast peace talks, pledged on Tuesday to fight terror and violence and called on Israel to "rebuild trust and restore normal Palestinian life."
This is comical. They will continue to fight terrorism? When did they start? As far as restoring Palestinian life, they need not look any further than that compound in Ramallah to accomplish that. It's not up to the Israelis. Israel will live out her responsibilities when her citizens are no longer threatened. A government's first responsibility is the security of its citizens.
The miserable Arab life that is prevalent throughout the Middle East is the responsibility of the terrorists with whom Bush is sharing a meeting room right now. Watching him shake their hands wrenches my stomach. These are the people who incite hatred towards all things non-Muslim in their mosques, on state-run television, and by firmly planting their boots on their citizens' necks. The problem in the Middle East is currently exchanging pleasantries and empty promises in Sharm el Sheik. I could care less that they "accept" the road map to hell, because when it fails, they will point their fingers at Israel. This story has been written before.
Monday, June 02, 2003
Just heard this Amber Alert (California) on the radio:
Update: Annabelle was found Monday afternoon in Utah with her abductor. Thankfully, this story has a happy ending.