noembed noembed

Commentary, sarcasm and snide remarks from a Florida resident of over thirty years. Being a glutton for punishment is a requirement for residency here. Who am I? I've been called a moonbat by Michelle Malkin, a Right Wing Nut by Daily Kos, and middle of the road by Florida blog State of Sunshine. Tell me what you think.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Russian smoke screen

From AP-

MOSCOW - Russia's upper house speaker called Friday for constitutional changes that would allow President Vladimir Putin to remain in office beyond 2008 — a proposal that was quickly rejected by the Kremlin.

In a speech after his re-election as speaker of the Federation Council, Sergei Mironov said the presidential term should be extended from four to at least five years and that presidents should be permitted to serve more than two consecutive terms.

The March 2008 presidential vote is seen as a key test for Russia's political system, and any change in the law to permit Putin to stay in the job would be seen by the West as a further erosion of democracy.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov dismissed Mironov's proposal, saying that Putin opposes any changes in the constitution that would extend his term.

"We proceed from the president's position that it is pointless to change the constitution to extend the presidential term or the number of terms," he told The Associated Press. "This stance of the president remains unchanged."
Putin's official position not withstanding, I wouldn't bet against this being some well planned subterfuge. Putin offically denies interest in serving any longer but one of his toadies in parliament ramming through the constitutional changes needed to let Putin stay on however long he wishes. Then Putin graciously accepts the change. Maybe I'm paranoid, or don't understand Russian politics sufficiently. One thing is certain, Putin can't be trusted.

Captain Ed is also commenting.
Linked to- Blue Star, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,

Labels: ,

Equal Time

I knew this would come up if Fred Dalton Thompson ran for President.

If Fred Thompson, the onetime Tennessee senator better known to most Americans as District Attorney Arthur Branch on "Law & Order," runs for president, some fans may be in for a letdown. Television stations are expected to suspend reruns of the show if he makes a real-life bid for the White House.

Federal campaign law requires broadcasters to give all candidates equal time on the airwaves. That rule applies to entertainment programs like "Law & Order," meaning stations that run the show would be required to give other GOP candidates a like amount of prime-time exposure.

With as many as a dozen or more Republican candidates competing for the nomination, that would be prohibitively expensive.

"As a practical matter, [the television stations] would in all likelihood have to pull all of the Fred Thompson shows for the duration of his candidacy," said Andrew Jay Schwartzman, president of the Media Access Project.

Thompson, who remains a member of the "L&O" cast, would likely leave the show if he decides to run, observers said.

The equal-time provision, enforced by the Federal Communications Commission, has been a staple of political campaigning for decades. Its primary goal is to make sure that candidates cannot be frozen out of crucial television time for their campaign commercials.

Candidates' appearances on newscasts, interview programs and at news events are exempted from the rule. So are incidental appearances in documentaries.

But the rule has been applied to television and movie stars in the past.

During the 2003 gubernatorial race in California, television stations dropped all Arnold Schwarzenegger movies out of fear that showing them would require them to give countless hours of free airtime to all 134 other candidates for governor.

Stations also dropped "Bedtime for Bonzo" and other Ronald Reagan movies during his campaigns for governor of California and president.

"Yes, this is a kind of weird application of what is a very good law," Schwartzman said.

There is potential good news for "Law & Order" fans. The FCC rules have never been applied to cable channels, though several legal experts said cable often abides by an equal-time guideline in the hopes of avoiding a legal case that would set a precedent.

Thompson's situation could spark such a case, though a spokesman for NBC Universal, which syndicates "Law & Order," said the network had no comment.

The TNT cable network shows several hours of "Law & Order" reruns every day and often holds all-day marathons. If that continues while Thompson is running for office, one of his rivals could seek to apply the equal-time rule to cable TV.

To do that, the other candidates would have to monitor each of Thompson's appearances, count the minutes he appeared, and then request equal time within seven days of each episode.

Only the actual time that Thompson appears in each episode is counted, legal experts said.
L&O has been on the air for 17 years, counting the 2006-07 season. According to IMDB, Thompson has appeared in 109 episodes. That is less than 1/3 of all the episodes of that show. A television season is generally 22 shows. That times 17 is 374 episodes. Remember the most recent season is on NBC right this minute, that takes 22 episodes out of any syndication package. At present that would leave 87 episodes give or take a few. That comes to about twenty-five percent of the episodes available for reruns.

If a channel showed L&O weekdays once a day, they'd never run the same episode twice even without the Thompson episodes. Is this really going to hurt TNT or any other channels that show the reruns? It wouldn't seem so to me.

Also note- Thompson has appeared in eleven episodes of the Special Victims Unit L&O series, and two of Criminal Intent. You'd have to guess those episodes would be canned also under the equal time provision. Both series are also in syndication at present.

Hat tip- James Joyner at OTB
Linked to- Cao, Jo, Right Wing Nation, Pursuing Holiness,

Labels: , , ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Tampa Bay Running back Lionel Theron Gates. He gets the award for the following.

TAMPA - Investigators say a Tampa Bay Buccaneers player broke into a pregnant woman's home, hit her in the face and pushed her into a wall in a dispute over whether he is the baby's father.

Lionel Theron Gates, 25, who was on the Bucs' practice squad last season and remains under contract, was arrested at 12:30 a.m. Friday on charges of burglary of an occupied dwelling, battery on a pregnant woman and criminal mischief, jail records show.

He was released Friday night from the Hillsborough County jail on $34,500 bail, with the restrictions that he have no contact with the victim and can no longer reside in the same apartment complex where she lives.

At 11 p.m. Thursday, Gates kicked in the front door of Peggie Lavender's apartment just north of Gunn Highway near the Veterans Expressway, deputies say.

He broke a big-screen television, another television, an interior door, a bedroom door and made a hole in the bedroom wall, deputies say.

The specifics of the argument were not made public.

Lavender, 28, was not hospitalized, said sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter.

Gates, a 2005 seventh-round draft choice for the Buffalo Bills, was on the Bucs' practice squad last season but did not appear in games. He was re-signed to a one-year contract after last season and is expected to enter training camp as one of several players vying for one of three running back spots.


The Bucs took no immediate action regarding Gates.
Only animals assault a pregnant woman. The Buccaneers should release this piece of scum, but first I make Lionel Theron Gates today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Linked to- Amboy Times, Blue Star, Cao, Jo, Leaning Straight Up, Macbro's Place, Outside the Beltway, Perri Nelson, Pirate's Cove, Random Yak, Right Wing Nation, Right Voices, Samantha Burns, StikNstein, Third World County,

Labels: , , ,

Friday, March 30, 2007

Wrong sign

From the Tampa Tribune-

The city put up a new street sign last night at the corner of Kennedy Boulevard and Ashley Drive. The glitch, though, was that the city spelled Kennedy “Kenndey.”

Call it human error, said Irv Lee, the city’s public works director.

“Sometimes when you’re baking cakes, you break a few eggs,” Lee said.

Irv said the error is especially unfortunate because it is at such a high-profile intersection. The city will put up a corrected sign tonight.

“We don’t want to dishonor the name of President Kennedy,” Lee said.
Mr. Lee did you ever think of how the Ken Deys of the world will feel now? Our Florida tax dollars at work.

Linked to- Macbro's Place, Samantha Burns, StikNstein,


One man Judge and Jury

Knucklehead Broward County Judge Charles Greene is back in the news.

A court stenographer who was jailed and then placed on house arrest for failing to complete a transcript, admitted to a misdemeanor criminal contempt charge Thursday.

Ann Margaret Smith, 44, of Lauderhill, admitted that she violated court orders by not completing the trial transcript of a child rapist and as a result delayed his appeal for a new trial.

Broward Circuit Judge Charles Greene admonished Smith for impeding justice.

"You are the wheel that turns and allows everyone to receive justice," he said. "Everyone is entitled to finalization, the defendants, victims and the attorneys. ... It all breaks down when the court reporter doesn't do the transcript. Without you doing your job, no one else in the justice system can."

Fed up after Smith missed several deadlines from the 4th District Court of Appeal, Greene jailed the single mother of three March 9. She worked on the transcript in jail. After four days, Greene placed Smith on house arrest until she finished the job.

Smith completed the more than 1,500-page transcript last week and will be paid $3,990 for her work.

The transcript is from the trial of Damion Winston Foster, who was convicted of raping a 2-year-old Pompano Beach boy. In April 2006, Foster was sentenced to three consecutive life sentences without parole.

On Thursday, Greene ordered Smith into a one-year diversion program that includes monitoring and community service. He also ordered Smith to pay $1,142 for costs incurred while she was jailed.

Greene also ordered Smith to comply with all requests for clarification or corrections to the Foster transcript, to complete all future assignments in a timely manner and to meet the April 9 final-extension date for another overdue transcript.
Anyone else think our justice system is broke and corrupt any time a judge can hand down sentences like the above? Tell me where was the trial? Where was the appeal? Child molestors get more rights than this. The whole justice system is corrupt in Broward County and much of the rest of the US. The public puts up with out of control lunatics like Greene until our own rights that are being taken away by one idiot having a temper tantrum.

God help anyone who appears in a Broward County courtroom.

Linked to- Bright & Early, Bullwinkle, Pirate's Cove,

Labels: ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Marcus Einfeld. He gets the award for the following.

SYDNEY (Reuters) - A former Australian judge, who blamed a dead woman for a speeding offence in his car, has been charged by police and could face a hefty jail sentence over his attempts to avoid a A$77 (32 pound) traffic fine.

After a long-running investigation that has attracted nationwide publicity, police laid 13 separate charges of perjury, perverting the course of justice and other offences against former judge and human rights advocate Marcus Einfeld.

A Sydney newspaper last year sparked the massive police investigation into the use of statutory declarations to avoid speeding fines after revealing a woman blamed for driving Einfeld's car had died three years before the offence. "It will be alleged that the offences relate to four separate camera detection infringement notices," chief police investigator Colin Dyson told reporters.

The police investigation found 240 people had also used a scam to blame another dead person, or a man living in another state, after their cars were photographed speeding or committing traffic offences.

A Sydney court last August dismissed a speeding charge against Einfeld when he provided a declaration that he had loaned his car to an old friend from the United States on the day of the offence.

A Sydney newspaper which attempted to verify Einfeld's story later found the woman had died in a car accident in 2003 -- three years before Einfeld's car was photographed speeding in Sydney.

Einfeld, who has previously denied any wrongdoing, was bailed to appear in court in April. The offences he is now charged with carry sentences of up to 14 years in jail.
As TFM has pointed out many times, some of those with the most disrespect for the law are those in positions of enforcing it. Marcus Einfeld is today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Linked to- Amboy Times, Basil, Bright & Early, Cao, Jo, Morewhat, Outside the Beltway, Perri Nelson, Right Wing Nation, Samantha Burns, StikNstein, Third World County,

Labels: , ,

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Travelling salesman Florida Style

From the Orlando Sentinel-

Troopers hit the jackpot Wednesday when they arrested a man driving a methamphetamine lab on wheels, who had drugs tucked away in his armpit, grew marijuana in a tub and was on probation violation for murder.

Records at the Florida Department of Corrections indicate McComas served more than six years in jail for a 1991 murder charge and currently is under a 10-year probation.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers at 3:50 p.m. stopped Cocoa resident Charles Leon McComas, 46, on Interstate 95 near Mims, for a faulty license tag light on his RV. During the routine traffic stop near mile marker 228, troopers discovered that McComas had an outstanding warrant for his arrest from Suwannee County for violation of probation for second degree murder.

FHP called the Brevard County Sheriff's Office for assistance after a search of McComas' vehicle revealed paraphernalia and chemicals used in manufacturing methamphetamine. "Troopers are not equipped to handle hazardous materials," said trooper Kim Miller.

Also found in the RV were two rifles, ammunition, four marijuana plants growing in a bathtub and other drug-related items.

McComas and transported him to the Brevard County Jail Complex. While officials booked McComas at the jail, a baggie containing meth fell from his armpit.


McComas is charged with trafficking, manufacturing and possessing methamphetamine, violation of probation on second-degree murder, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, introduction of contraband to a jail facility and possession of drug paraphernalia and cultivation of marijuana.
I wonder what Mr. McComas defense strategy will be at trial. Anyone have suggestions?

Linked to- Bright & Early, Conservative Thoughts, Pirate's Cove,

Labels: ,

Kraft Nabisco

That's my longshot pick for this weekend's Kraft Nabisco Championship, Grace Park. Grace wouldn't normally be considered a longshot. She is the 2004 KN Champ plus a former winner of the Vare trophy. When healthy, I doubt there are more than four better players on tour than Grace Park.

However Grace has been injured for much of the last two years. She had her worst season ever in 2006. Kind of reminds of what happened to Se Ri Pak in 2004 and 2005. We all know what happened to the Korean Golf Queen in 2006.

On the plus side for Grace, she had a top 20 last week at the Safeway tournament in Arizona. That included a third round 65. That's the type of play that could make Grace a winner this weekend.

Other longshot or not obvious picks are(and South Korean golfers) are Shi Hyun Ahn, Jee Young Lee and Seon Hwa Lee. Any of these ladies could be jumping into the pond after Sunday's final round.

Oh and for the latest stupidity in the Golf MSM, we have who else John Antonini from Golf World magazine who writes of Hee Won Han-

The Kraft Nabisco is the only major a Korean player hasn't won, but that doesn't mean they won't be represented on the leaderboard.
Grace Park is definitely South Korean.

She has lived in the US since age 11, but considers herself Korean. John Antonini is just one more clueless idiot in the golf media.

Doug Ferguson writes about the obvious(or some would say realistic) pick this weekend. No doubt about it, Lorena Ochoa is playing sensational golf and has to be considered the favorite. I'll stand by my New Year's pick, Se Ri Pak.

Reminder- Michelle Wie is not playing this week.

Linked to- Basil, Bright & Early,

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. - Lorena Ochoa finds inspiration just about everywhere she turns in the California desert.

She never came closer to winning a major than one year ago in the Kraft Nabisco Championship. The Mexican star tied an LPGA major record with a 62 in the opening round, only to carelessly throw away shots over the weekend. And despite a birdie-par-eagle finish to force a playoff, she left Mission Hills empty after losing to Karrie Webb in a playoff.

"I didn't like the feeling of losing, kind of giving the tournament away after a great first round," she said. advertisement

But the Coachella Valley is filled with positive vibes, too, for it was only five months ago at Bighorn that Ochoa produced perhaps her most significant victory to date.

She trailed Annika Sorenstam by 3 shots going into the final round of the Samsung World Championship on a course where Sorenstam had never lost and was going after a record sixth victory. Despite such daunting odds, the fearless Ochoa fired at flags and closed with a 7-under 65 to win by 2.

It sent Ochoa on her way to winning LPGA Player of the Year and the money title, which had belonged to Sorenstam the past five years. And it allowed her to truly believe that being No. 1 in the world was only a matter of time.

Perhaps the time is now.

Ochoa can move to No. 1 in the women's world ranking and fill the only hole in her credentials with a victory in the Kraft Nabisco Championship, which starts today at Mission Hills.

There is little to suggest she is not the favorite.

She is coming off a six-victory season that allowed her to sweep all the major awards. And she is coming off a victory last week against a strong field at Superstition Mountain in Gold Canyon, where she birdied four of the last five holes.

"I would say Lorena is playing very, very well," Sorenstam said. " . . . So far, and right now, she's playing some superb golf. So I'm not surprised that the gap is smaller and smaller."

The Kraft Nabisco is played on the same course every year, and the 101 players make it the smallest field among LPGA majors.

In her fifth year on tour, about the only thing Ochoa, 25, has not achieved is winning a major.

Her first decent chance came two years at Cherry Hills, a grueling test for the 2005 U.S. Women's Open. Ochoa was among the early starters and was poised to post a score of 3 over - the winning score that day - until she hooked her tee shot on the 18th into the water and stumbled to a quadruple bogey.

Labels: , , ,

Florida the rules are different here Chapter XCV

Recently I blogged about the new water restrictions in South Florida. We're in the midst of a drought once again. No question about it, water conservation is required right now.

Some how the City of Riviera Beach didn't get the memo. City taxpayers could foot the bill for the incompetence. Don't you just love Florida?

Linked to- Basil, Bright & Early, Bullwinkle,

RIVIERA BEACH — The city caught them red-handed Wednesday: sprinklers spraying in broad daylight, brazenly violating the region's water restrictions.

The problem: They're the city's sprinklers.

Spokeswoman Rose Anne Brown blamed it on bad timing, saying a city worker took longer than expected to turn off all the sprinklers before the 8 a.m. deadline. As a result, she said, several sprinklers were still spraying the median along Blue Heron Boulevard as late as 9 a.m., in full view of rush-hour traffic.

The city is taking steps to keep it from happening again, Brown said. But she said a lot of the sprinklers are old and lack timers, so they have to be turned on and off manually.

"The city fully intends to comply and set the example for our residents," she said, adding that the some public works and parks workers are now on earlier shifts. "Our goal is to have everything off by 7:30."

Glad to hear it, said the South Florida Water Management District, which has the power to fine municipal scofflaws as much as $10,000 a day for each violation.

"We do think that municipalities ought to be setting an example," spokesman Jesus Rodriguez said. "It certainly doesn't help when you're watering your lawn only once a week and then you see a median being watered in the middle of the day."

Rodriguez said the district is looking into the Riviera Beach violation, although he doesn't know of any official complaints. Brown said the city already has discussed it with the district and she doesn't expect any fines.

"We explained to them what happened, and that was the end of it," she said.

The district imposed the restrictions last week amid a drought that shows no signs of ending as the region nears its hottest, driest months. They generally limit all users to three days of irrigation per week and ban sprinkling after 8 a.m.

In one four-month spree during the last drought in 2001, the district slapped more than $360,000 in fines on farms, golf courses, apartment complexes and other violators.

They included the governments of Palm Beach County, Jupiter, Boca Raton and Palm Beach Gardens.

Labels: ,

No Free Lunch

Some news from Ohio. When is the ACLU going to sue claiming the defendant's civil rights are being violated?

Linked to- Amboy Times, Perri Nelson, StikNstein,

CLEVELAND - No soup for you!

A man and a woman accused of scamming stores out of millions of dollars have been banned from the courthouse cafeteria after a police officer said the two were spotted lifting food.

"If they do that in here, then what are they doing out there on bond?" said Richmond Heights police Sgt. Chuck Duffy.

Duffy said Joan Hall, 65, loaded a takeout lunch into a plastic bag and set it atop a newspaper rack near the checkout counter. Then, he said, Roger Neff, 75, moved the lunch to the top of a trash can, where they waited for a few minutes, then left with the lunch.

Judge Nancy Fuerst banned them from the cafeteria during the trial. "You bring your lunch," she said.

Edward LaRue, Neff's attorney, said on Wednesday that he was prohibited by the judge from talking about the trial or what happened in the cafeteria.

Prosecutors said Hall masterminded a scam involving revolving-door department store returns, switched sales tags and phony identities. Neff, who prosecutors say is her longtime boyfriend, is a co-defendant in the case.

Labels: ,

Trenton Duckett investigation

From the Orlando Sentinel-

OCALA -- Marion County sheriff's investigators say they are looking for new clues in the search for missing Leesburg toddler Trenton Duckett.

Detectives are trying to find the owners of a Cadillac Escalade SUV who might have met with Trenton's mom, Melinda Duckett, in the week before the 2-year-old's reported abduction on Aug. 27, the agency announced Wednesday.

According to authorities, a witness told them a woman resembling Melinda Duckett met the couple at a construction site on U.S. Highway 27, less than a mile north of the Florida's Turnpike entrance ramp and just north of Plantation-at-Leesburg.

The couple, described as an Asian or Hispanic man and woman in their late 50s to early 60s, drove a light silver or light gold SUV, possibly with a New York license tag. The Escalade SUV may have been a model built between 2002 and 2006.

The witness told detectives that woman had a small child with her and she placed a blue or black bag on the hood of her vehicle.

Trenton was reported missing days later from his bedroom in his mother's Leesburg apartment. She told police she was in another room watching a movie at the time. Melinda Duckett, who police labeled the prime suspect in the case, committed suicide Sept. 8, almost two weeks after her son's disappearance.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Marion County Sheriff's Office at 352-732-9111 or Leesburg police at 352-787-2121.

Please continue to pray for this boy and all his family.

Linked to- Bright & Early, Jo,

Labels: ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Jun Ducat. He gets the award for the following.

MANILA (AP) — A man who took a busload of children and teachers hostage from his day-care center in Manila on Wednesday freed them after a 10-hour standoff that he used to denounce corruption and demand better lives for impoverished children.

Clutching dolls, toys and backpacks, the children began filing off the bus shortly after 7 p.m. (1100 GMT), as Jun Ducat — clutching an unpinned grenade and with an assault rifle slung across his chest — had promised in a rambling message delivered via a loudspeaker hours earlier.

After the children disembarked, Ducat — a 56-year-old civil engineer who has staged attention-grabbing stunts in the past — put the pin back in the grenade and surrendered.

White candles had been lit near the bus, on Ducat's request. Some were placed under the yellow police tape used to cordon off the area; police and onlookers clutched others.

Ducat apologized to his students and to police, but cautioned authorities to stick to their promises to provide the children with a good education.


Police meanwhile drove Ducat away.

"I accept that I should be jailed because what I did was against the law," he said in an interview with The Associated Press shortly before the standoff ended.

Manila police district chief Danilo Abarzosa said Ducat will be charged with 32 counts of illegal detention and abduction — each count is punishable by up to 12 years in prison — along with illegal possession of explosives and illegal possession of firearms.
What a nut! Endangering over 30 lives for a dumb political stunt. Hopefully Jun Ducat will spend of his life in jail where he belongs, but first I make him today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Linked to- Amboy Times, Basil, Blue Star, Bright & Early, Cao, Jo, Outside the Beltway, Perri Nelson, Pursuing Holiness, Random Yak, Right Voices, Right Wing Nation, StikNstein, Third World County,

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

101 Dalmatians Haitians

From the Sun-Sentinel-

HOLLYWOOD – Officials said more than 100 Haitians migrants aboard a wooden fishing boat landed on the city's southern beach Wednesday morning. At least nine were hospitalized and at least one person died in the crossing.

The dilapidated 30- to 35-foot single-mast sailboat ran aground a short distance north of Hallandale Beach Boulevard and A1A shortly before 7 a.m. The rickety boat and its human cargo quickly drew a crowd of onlookers.

TV cameras showed a number of passengers jumping into the rough surf and swimming a short distance to the nearby shore. Some appeared weak, disoriented and seasick.

All were taken to a nearby Hallandale Beach fire station where officials said they counted 101 people, including at least two teenagers and one 10-year-old.
101 is actually quite a large amount. It is usually a couple of score. For those familiar with Haitian smuggling, they usually come to the US after a stopover in the Bahamas.

Rick at SOTP writes-

We're going on 6 years since 9/11. 6 years for George W. Bush and a Republican-controlled Congress to secure our borders. And yet, and yet...101 Haitians in a sailboat can still drift ashore undetected. I am totally aware that security is never 100%. But this isn't a midnight run. This isn't a go-fast speeding across the Gulfstream. It's a sailboat in broad daylight drifting onto Hollywood Beach. In full view. With TV cameras running.
I wouldn't be blaming Bush or the Coast Guard so fast. This news from three months ago flew underneath alot of radar screens.

KEY WEST - The U.S. Coast Guard, one of the key lines of defense in the Florida Straits on homeland security, drug smuggling and migrant interdictions, took eight of its 10 Key West-based patrol cutters out of action indefinitely Thursday because of structural problems.

The decision, announced by the Coast Guard's top commander, Adm. Thad Allen, who flew to Key West to tell crews personally, will create a hole in surveillance and law enforcement of the Florida Straits at a potentially critical time, with the failing health of Fidel Castro.
That was on December 12th and I don't know if any of the cutters have been back into service since. All in all, I'm not surprised today's event doesn't happen more often.

Linked to- Cao, Pursuing Holiness, Right Wing Nation,

Labels: ,


It's ideas like this that make being a masochist a requirement for living in Florida.

TALLAHASSEE – In a move that would alter the way thousands of people use Interstate 95, the Florida Senate is moving to allocate money to convert the free, HOV lanes to toll lanes from Interstate 595 in Broward to State Road 112 in Miami-Dade

The high-occupancy vehicle lanes currently allow vehicles with two or more passengers and hybrid vehicles with just one occupant to zip along the interstate while everyone else is sitting in traffic during morning and afternoon rush hours. The change would offer the privilege of the fast ride for anyone willing to pay.

The idea is a long way from becoming reality, and faces stiff opposition from Broward County legislators. But it got a boost Wednesday as drafters of the Senate version of the state budget included $35 million for the project. That would be matched by $35 million from the federal government, for a total cost of $70 million.
Someone tell me how I-95 will be even partly converted into a toll road without some kind of construction work having to be done to the highway? I know there is the Sunpass gadgetry, but to record the use of a HOV lane, some kind of road work is going to have to be done. On a highway that is overburdened with traffic already and has been in constant state of under construction for at least a decade.

Just whip me people if this legislation ever becomes law.

Linked to- Bright & Early, Morewhat, Pirate's Cove, StikNstein,

Labels: ,


The Marine Corps has announced a ban on large, garish tattoos.

OCEANSIDE, Calif. - Five tattooed skulls stretch from Marine Cpl. Jeremy Slaton's right elbow to his wrist, spelling out the word "Death." He planned to add a tattoo spelling "Life" on his left arm, but that's on hold because of a Marine policy taking effect Sunday.

The Marines are banning any new, extra-large tattoos below the elbow or the knee, saying such body art is harmful to the Corps' spit-and-polish image.

Slaton and other grunts are not pleased.

"I guess I'll get the other half later," grumbled the 24-year-old leatherneck from Eden Prairie, Minn. "It's kind of messed up."

For many Marines, getting a tattoo is a rite of passage. They commonly get their forearms inscribed to remember fallen comrades, combat tours or loved ones, and often ask for exotic designs that incorporate the Marine motto, Semper Fi, or "Always faithful."

Dozens of Marines from Camp Pendleton, the West Coast's biggest Marine base, made last-minute trips to tattoo parlors in nearby Oceanside before the ban kicked in.

"This is something I love to do," said Cpl. David Nadrchal, 20, of Ponoma, who made an appointment to get an Iraqi flag and his deployment dates etched onto his lower leg. "The fact I can't put something on my body that I want — it's a big thing to tell me I can't do that."

Nadrchal said he is unsure whether he will re-enlist: "There's all these little things. They are slowly chipping away at us."


The ban is aimed primarily at "sleeve" tattoos, the large and often elaborate designs on the biceps and forearms of many Marines. Similar designs on the lower legs will be forbidden as well. So will very large tattoos on the upper arm, if they are visible when a Marine wears his workout T-shirt. Small, individual tattoos will still be allowed on the arms and legs. (The Marines already ban them on the hands.)
Nadrchal's devotion to body art calls into his question his devotion to the Marine Corps. Is body art more important than your country?

TFM is an ex-Navy corpsman and I saw plenty of tattoos in those days.(Note- I have no tatoos of my own. I never felt the need to have a drawing placed on my body) Most were small and could only be seen if someone was undressed. Today there seems to be more people interested in having their whole bodies painted. I guess to each their own, but the military demands some conformity from those serving in it. The new restrictions don't seem out of line to me.

What do you think?

Linked to- Cao, Jo, Pursuing Holiness, Right Voices,


Nearsighted mother, nearsighted law

From Bloomberg-

March 20 (Bloomberg) -- A Polish mother who was denied an abortion after disagreement among doctors in the staunchly Catholic country over the risks of childbirth was awarded compensation by the European Court of Human Rights.

Alicja Tysiac, who is severely shortsighted, was granted 39,000 euros ($51,834), mainly payable by the Polish government. In 2000, she was told by a gynecologist she was able to give birth through caesarean section even after gaining a certificate saying the pregnancy would harm her health, court documents showed.

A danger to the life or health of the mother is one of three exceptions to a general ban on abortion in Poland, an issue at the center of a current political debate. The Polish Families' League, the junior partner in the governing coalition, wants to change the constitution to protect life from conception. Such an amendment would ensure future governments couldn't relax abortion laws.


Tysiac, 36 this year, was in the early stages of her third pregnancy when she was told there was no need for an abortion. The child was born in November 2000.

She suffers from myopia, or nearsightedness, and her eyesight has since ``deteriorated considerably'' and she fears eventual blindness, according to the court.


The court in Strasbourg, eastern France, said the legal prohibition on abortion in Poland together with the risk for doctors of incurring criminal responsibility ``can well have a chilling effect on doctors when deciding whether the requirements of legal abortion are met in an individual case.''

Abortion is also allowed in Poland when the pregnancy results from rape or if the fetus has an untreatable disease.


The court awarded Tysiac 25,000 euros for the ``considerable anguish and suffering, including her fears about her physical capacity to take care of another child'' that she must have endured and 14,000 euros for legal fees and expenses.

Whatevery your opinion is on abortion, someone tell me how myopia can be the medical basis for terminating a pregnancy. Nearsightednes isn't life threatening to a mother or anyone else for a matter of fact.

There is this other news out of Poland.

WARSAW, Poland - Thousands of Poles took to Warsaw’s streets Wednesday to demand a complete ban on abortion, including in cases of rape or incest.

Two separate marches merged into a demonstration of 4,000 people in front of parliament, where lawmakers were debating amending the constitution to tighten Poland’s anti-abortion law, already among the most restrictive in the EU.

”I am for life,” said Miroslawa Kledzinska, 64. ”God gives life and only he has the right to take life away.”

Poland’s abortion law allows termination of a pregnancy until the 12th week if the mother’s life is in danger, the fetus is irreparably damaged or the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest.

President Lech Kaczynski has put forward one of three separate proposals to amend the constitution to prohibit abortion completely.

However, none has a chance of being adopted while the main opposition Civic Platform party remains opposed. A two-thirds majority is needed in the 460-member lower house to change the constitution.
Again, no matter what your views on abortion, there is an instance where a pregnancy must be terminated. An ectopic pregnancy, where a fertilized ovum is implanted in any tissue other than the uterine wall, is life threatening to a mother. Either drugs or surgery is needed to treat the mother and terminate the pregnancy. The life being carried by the mother with very rare exceptions will never be born.

Therefore a complete ban on terminating pregnancies is insane.(The mother's body in the case of ectopic pregnancies, aborts the baby on its own but medical care is required) There are legitimate medical reasons(a very very few) out there. Myopia just isn't one of them.

Linked to- Pursuing Holiness, Conservative Thoughts, Right Voices,

Labels: , , ,

Pay your bills or off to the gulag

Some news from the Ukraine. I'm not Ukrainian, but know what Stalin did to this region of the old Soviet Union in the 1930's. These billboards and commercials were in very bad taste.

Linked to- Blue Star, Right Wing Nation, StikNstein,

KIEV, Ukraine - An ad campaign featuring billboards and commercials with images of the Soviet dictator Josef Stalin exhorting people to pay their bills was pulled on Monday after protests from rights groups and nationalists.

The campaign in the eastern Ukraine town of Donetsk came after utility rates in Ukraine increased markedly last year and people stopped paying their bills.

Irina Taran, a spokeswoman for Donetsk governing council, said dozens of billboards featuring Stalin appeared in the city last week; commercials featuring old film clips of the Soviet leader also appeared. Ukrainian media reported that the mayor's office initiated the ad campaign, then backed down in the face of protests.

One billboard shows Stalin holding a piece of paper and saying "Comrades! This isn't a film! This is life!" In the television ad, Stalin is shown in grainy black-and-white footage being applauded by hundreds of party members as a dubbed-over voice says: "Those who don't pay for their heat should be punished!"

Critics said it was shameful for authorities to be using an image of a man whom many Ukrainians blame for killing one-third of the country's population during the famine in the 1930s.

"We were surprised by these billboards ourselves. We have nothing to do with it," Taran told The Associated Press.

Donetsk mayoral officials could not be reached for comment, but one utility official told Russia's NTV television that the company was struggling with a serious backlog of unpaid bills.

"Stalin is used here not as a historical personality, but more as a symbol of inevitable punishment. Failure to pay for one's (utility) services is a serious wrongdoing," said Alexander Semchenko, deputy chief of the Donetsk City Heating Network Company.

Labels: ,

Florida the rules are different here Chapter XCIV

A Martin County Noise Advisory Committee advised homeowners they don't have to tell prospective home buyers about noise from a nearby airport. Does this board or the people living by the airport have a conscience or do they feel good about ripping people off? You just got to love Florida.

Linked to- Basil, Bright & Early, Bullwinkle, Cao, Jo,

Homeowners around Witham Field should not have to tell prospective buyers of their homes that they live near the airport, the Martin County Noise Advisory Committee recommended Thursday.

"Disclosure is really intended to punish those living here now," said Don Fogt, one of several residents at the meeting who opposed a recommendation from consultants to require the airport's proximity be disclosed.

"It won't do anything to fix the noise problem. All it will do is continue to affect our property values," he said.

No residents spoke out in favor of the disclosure requirement, and the advisory committee unanimously recommended against it.

"You shouldn't have to disclose the proximity to the airport. It's obvious," said Bill Frondorf, a committee member who is also a real estate agent. "Where do you draw the line?"

Jennifer Atkisson-Lovett, president of the Realtor Association of Martin County, said real estate agents are now required to disclose only defects with a piece of property that are not readily evident to the buyer. Proximity to the airport is evident, she said.

Neighbors of Witham Field have complained about pollution and noise caused by jets flying overhead, and several have sued the county.

Requiring disclosure or even publishing ads in local newspapers showing the areas affected by noise could help the county defend itself if people who were told about airport noise before they moved in later decide to sue, said Lisa Waters, the consultant studying the airport's noise issues for the county.

Disclosures also could discourage suits, Waters said. If the size of the area affected by noise later expands, those in the new noise zone may have claims against the county, she said.

But committee member and Stuart Commissioner Carol Waxler said she has a problem with anything that takes away a resident's right to sue.

"That's part of our basic rights as U.S. citizens," Waxler said.

The county commission will have the final vote on whether to require disclosures near the airport.


I feel fine doc...really

From New York Newsday-

Many women have no qualms about not telling the truth to their doctors and a whopping 52 percent say they give in to the temptation of what they feel is a harmless "little, white lie."

The finding was made by Dr. Nancy Jasper, an assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons. Jasper said it's very likely that men also hide the truth on the examination table, but as an OB/GYN, she said, she focused on the patients she sees most often.

Click here to find out more!
Key among her findings in a national survey of 526 women is that respondents who admitted to lying say they are not concerned about the consequences. Jasper said a lie can lead to a wrong prescription, which can prove detrimental. Participants in the survey were between the ages of 25 and 49.

"I always ask my patients whether they smoke," Jasper said. "A lot of women will say, 'No, but I am a social smoker.' And I say: 'You'll have to define that for me because I have no idea what that means.' They'll say they only smoke on weekends.

"But you start to uncover more when you ask: 'How many cigarettes do you smoke in a week?'" Jasper said.

She said she tells patients that even casual smoking can lead to conditions such as emphysema and lung cancer, and that smokers over age 35 who also are on hormonal contraceptives are at significantly increased risk of blood clots and stroke.

Jasper said women sometimes do not intend to lie, they simply forget about important medical information that can have an impact on the health care they receive. Many reveal neither the kind nor number of over-the-counter drugs and supplements they take when questioned about medications they're on.
But is not telling the doctor about OTC drugs or supplements the same as not telling them you're having this pain or that pain? Not in my opinion. It isn't in a patient's best interest not to be candid with a doctor. The doctor is(or should be) a professional, what you tell them is confidential. You need to keep them fully informed of all medicines I take. If you don't, you could end up like this person. (Without the tatoos and overwhelming media coverage)

One last note- If we did a survey of men and women, I'd think men would poll in even lower numbers when it comes to being truthful with their doctors.

Linked to- Blue Star, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,


Trade Minister

Today's New York Times has a lengthy article on the Congo. Six months after holding elections, little has changed in the government. To be truthful, expecting miracles after forty plus years of fighting and civil war is a little unrealistic. Then this newspaper publishes fantasies all the time.

Here is one interesting or amusing tidbit.

In early March, when it came time to form the first truly democratic government in the country’s history, a political party connected to President Joseph Kabila submitted the name André Kasongo Ilunga for trade minister. The problem, government officials later acknowledged, was that there was no such man.

Naturally, when the government appointed Mr. Ilunga to the cabinet, he did not show up. The president’s advisers soon discovered that the name had been submitted as a ruse to ensure that another politician got the post.

“It was very embarrassing for all of us,” said Kikaya bin Karubi, a member of Parliament and a confidant of President Kabila.
LOL, maybe they could have submitted my name but I'd decline the job. Maybe the election just changed the faces of those who rule the Congo. As my wife(Who was in a 3rd world country) so often says, 'Same dog, different collar.'

Linked to-Bullwinkle, Right Wing Nation, StikNstein,

Labels: ,

Clueless in Jacksonville

Another goofball Judge sighting. From Florida Today-

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A Circuit Court judge pulled a handgun in his courtroom after a man jumped a railing and punched a handcuffed defendant accused of molesting his son.

Bailiffs eventually took control of the attacker during Friday's outburst, and Circuit Judge John Merrett handed his gun to a clerk for safekeeping. The judge met with the father in his chambers and later ordered him released without bail, even though he was charged with a felony and two misdemeanors.

The man is not being named to protect the identity of his son.

Merrett said Monday he never put his finger on the trigger or pointed the gun at anyone.

Because of the way his courtroom is configured, the judge said he couldn't see the fight below his bench. He said he pulled the gun as a precaution.

"I didn't know if he was going after me or the bailiffs or the defendant," the judge said.
Judge, I think the father was angry with the price of coffee at the courthouse. NOT! Is Judge Merrett somehow related to this man?

Linked to- Bullwinkle, Overtaken by Events, Perri Nelson,

Labels: , ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is the Romania's People Registration Service. They get the award for the following.

BUCHAREST (Reuters) - A cashier for Romania's state-owned railway has been asked to pay a month's worth of wages to receive government confirmation that she is alive.

Filoftea Popescu discovered when she applied for a passport that the Romania's People Registration Service had mistakenly declared her dead in November 2005, stripping her of all her rights as a citizen.

"I went to the police ... and I found out that I have no rights in the Romanian state because I died in 2005," the 55-year-old Popescu was quoted on Monday by daily Evenimentul Zilei as saying.

Romania is struggling to cut through vast red tape and complicated legislation to improve a bloated and ineffective administration in order to benefit from new membership in the European Union.

"A lawyer told me it costs me 500 lei (to obtain a court order). Why should I pay to prove I am alive?" Popescu said.

The People Registration Service admitted its error and said it fired the staff responsible.
Classic bureaucratic stupidity. If Ms. Popescu was supposed, she should have asked for a refund on all taxes she had paid since her 'death'. Wouldn't that be fair?

For redefining bureaucratic bungling Eastern European style, The Romania's People Registration Service is today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Linked to- Basil, Blue Star, Bright & Early, Cao, Conservative Thoughts, Jo, Leaning Straight Up, Morewhat, Outside the Beltway, Perri Nelson, Pirate's Cove, Planck's Constant, Right Voices, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tenerife- 30 years later

Some news from Spain.

Tenerife has been remembering the world’s worst ever air disaster.

It was 30 years ago, March 27 1977, when 583 people lost their lives in a collision between two jumbo jets from the KLM and Pan Am companies when the planes were diverted to Tenerife because of a bomb scare on Gran Canaria.

Investigations at the time showed that the Dutch plane had started to take off in thick fog without permission from the control tower.

An 18 metre high monument to the dead, ‘The snail’s staircase sculpture’ will be inaugurated this afternoon in the presence of family members of the bereaved and representatives of the Spanish, United States and Dutch governments.

The spiral theme is said to be a symbol of infinity, according to the Dutch artist Rudi van de Wint.

A grandaughter of two of those who perished at Tenerife, made the trip.

Thirty years ago, what was supposed to be a Greek cruise for Long Beach residents Dora and Lee Torres turned instead to tragedy.

On this day three decades ago, the couple was among 583 people who died when KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Flight 4805 collided with their plane, Pan Am Flight 1736, as it tried to take off from Los Rodeos Airport in Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain.


Today, the Torres' granddaughter Michelle Torres will join relatives of survivors, as well as American, Spanish and Dutch officials in Tenerife to take part in a ceremonial unveiling of a 19.8-foot-tall sculpture commemorating the air disaster.

"It applauds the people who were involved in rescue efforts and the people who were involved in the crash itself," said San Clemente resident Chuck Torres, the son of Dora and Lee Torres.
God bless the Chuck and Michelle Torres and all the families of the dead today.

What I said about Tenerife before, still applies.

Like most aviation disasters, a chain of seemingly innocent or inconsequential events ended in tragedy. Most but not all the blame falls on the KLM pilot, Captain Jacob Van Zanten who despite his many years of piloting, made a series of fatal mistakes mostly due to impatience.

Many lessons were learned from this disaster, but at a heavy price. Right now the US is going through a never before seen period of air safety. With no major airline crashes in over three years. We still need to keep our vigil up, complanecy has been the cause of more than one air crash. has more information on the events of that day on Tenerife 29 years ago. The report is good, but I disagree. Captain Van Zanten was not solely responsible for that tragic day in 1977.

Humans do tend to learn from our mistakes. There has never been an air disaster like it in the last 30 years. Aviation authorities need to stay vigilant, and keep another tragedy like it from ever happening again.

Linked to- Bullwinkle, Outside the Beltway, Third World County,

Labels: , ,

Time to resign Warren

County Commissioner and former Knucklehead winner Warren Newell has more ethics problems.

Palm Beach County Commissioner Warren Newell played a secretive role in a lucrative real estate flip, working the deal while voting three times on matters that enhanced the property's value.

In little more than a year, a company Newell co-founded more than doubled its money, real estate records show. The property, 6 vacant acres in suburban Lake Worth, was bought for $1.9 million, then sold for $4.4 million to a hospital chain.

Without disclosing his interest, Newell joined in commission votes in August 2004 and February 2005 that boosted the property's development potential, county records show. Before the votes, Newell and two partners had signed a contract on July 21, 2004, to buy the property, according to a copy The Palm Beach Post obtained. Among its conditions: "This contract shall not be recorded in the public records of Palm Beach County."

In May 2005, before the deal was closed, Newell's name was deleted from the company's public registration forms, state records show. After the deletion, his name also didn't appear on any related real estate documents filed in the public record. No mention of the deal appeared on Newell's annual financial disclosure reports.
The entire Palm Beach Post article is worth reading. I got to give the Post credit, for the second time in less than a year they've dug up dirt on a major local politician.

As for Newell, he is just another corrupt pol who feels he deserves special rewards or treatment because of the office he held. The conflicts of interest here are so obvious, a elementary school student can see them.

This isn't Newell's first transgression.

Palm Beach County Commissioner Warren Newell, champion of a $50 million taxpayer initiative to protect public access to the waterfront, steered $14 million to a private Hypoluxo marina where he docks his personal yacht.

Newell met privately with the marina's owners and county staff, then voted with other commissioners to pay $14 million to keep the Palm Beach Yacht Center a working boatyard, county records show. County administrators said they never were told about Newell's business ties to the marina. No record could be found that the four-term commissioner, before voting on the purchase, publicly disclosed his lengthy association with both the business and one of its owners.
That's a troubling trend to me. How about you?

It appears Newell's and disgraced PB County Commissioner Tony Masilotti's downfall were caused by the Post getting access to these men's divorce procedings. These are supposed to be public records, but as been shown in Broward County, are sometimes sealed by powerful people for other powerful people. I wonder how many scandals Knucklehead Judge Dale Ross is helping hide in the county to the south of here.

Already people are calling for Newell's resignation.

WEST PALM BEACH — One of County Commissioner Warren Newell's longest-serving colleagues wants him to step down following revelations that he repeatedly cast votes enhancing the value of land in which he held a secret financial interest.

"I would hope that he would resign," Commissioner Burt Aaronson said Monday, calling himself "stunned" by Sunday's story in The Palm Beach Post.


"Do I feel blindsided? Absolutely," Aaronson said. "I think we've been blindsided a couple times on the commission. ... The public has to have faith in the commissioners that are sitting here and haven't been accused of anything."
The public should have zero faith in Newell at present.

The Palm Beach Post called for Newell's resignation also.

Further, how many more deals are out there? Did Commissioner Newell abuse his position on two boards - as an elected commissioner and an appointed JFK Medical Center trustee - to enrich himself? His partners in the $4.4 million land deal included a JFK staff physician. The hospital's CEO knew in advance of demand for the land.


Even if Commissioner Newell backed out of the land deal before voting in favor of it, the public cannot know whether he profited later in other ways. By voting on two separate matters without disclosing his involvement, Commissioner Newell lost the public's trust. For that reason, he cannot continue to serve.
TFM joins the chorus, its time for you to resign Warren Newell. You are a disgrace to the people of Palm Beach County.

Linked to- Basil, Bullwinkle, Right Wing Nation,

Labels: , , ,

From the Silly News Desk

Some news from Deland Florida. Why wasn't this dangerous criminal turned over to ICE?(Sarcastic laughter time)

Linked to- Jo, Leaning Perri Nelson,

DELAND, Fla. - A visiting Norwegian skydiver was arrested after exposing his buttocks to an officer, police said. Vegard Svarstad, 24, of Norway, was blocking traffic at an intersection early Saturday morning, according to an arrest report.

When DeLand police Lt. David Heinig stopped at the intersection, he told Svarstad to continue across the street, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reported.

Instead, the man started to dance around, pulled down his pants and mooned the officer, Heinig said.

Svarstad was charged with disorderly intoxication and taken to the Volusia County Branch Jail on a $250 bond. At a first-appearance hearing later Saturday, Svarstad said he was preparing to return to Norway.

Prosecutors decided that his night in jail was sufficient punishment, a State Attorney's spokeswoman said. They dropped the charge and released him.

Labels: , , ,

How embarrassing

Golf World Magazine has done it again. A little over a month since an editor at the publication made six mistakes in a less than 500 word story, the publication has committed another boner.

What's wrong about the screen image to the left? Tom Watson didn't win his first major at the 1977 Masters but the 1975 British Open! Watson defeating Jack Newton in a playoff.

Sunday’s play-off began with Watson gaining an early two shot lead, but Newton quickly pulled even and went in front at the 12th. Watson responded with an eagle at the 14th and regained his lead. At the 18th, the two again stood level. Watson was on the green in two whilst Newton put his second shot into a bunker on the left. He played out past the pin. Watson made no errors in getting down in two putts, leaving Newton a down hill putt of around ten feet. He struck it smoothly but it just slid past the left hand side of the hole. Tom Watson had won his first Open Championship.
How embarrassing can it be to forget a major championship victory? Just the latest example of how bad the Golf MSM is.

Golf World's headline for the Nick Seitz story is off. Then Seitz's article has problems too.

The other critical par was on the par-3 16th, where a past experience with Nicklaus ironically was an influence. Watson had played with Nicklaus in '75 as a Masters rookie when Nicklaus was winning his fifth green jacket. Watson hit it in the water twice and made a 7. He watched how Nicklaus made a 2, and practiced extra thoughtfully on the hole the following two years.

"Standing on the tee in '77, it was either a 5-iron or 6-iron," he says, "so I took a 5-iron and hit a three-quarter shot as flush as I could hit it, right at the hole, never wavering off the flag, to the back of the green. As soon as I hit that shot, the nervousness I had felt the entire round was just flushed out of my body. I was calm as could be coming in. It was a crucial shot and I made it."

A shaky moment had to be overcome on the 72nd green, however. "I thought 'OK, Jack bogeyed and all I have to do is three-putt to win.' I was thinking the way most weekend golfers would think. Then I told myself 'Don't think that way!' I played the proper putt, left it close, tapped it in for a 4."

Nicklaus shot 66 and lost. A magnificent rivalry was born.

Today Watson calls it a watershed victory. "It proved I could win against the big boys," he says. Nicklaus being the biggest of all.
1- Watson was not a Masters rookie in 1975. He played in the 1970 Masters as an amateur. Yes and that does count.

2- Tom seems to be forgetting his 1975 British Open, or more likely Seitz is putting words in his mouth. Jack Newton, whose golf career was abbreviated because of a terrible accident, was no world beater. However finishing one shot of playoff in 1975 were both Jack Nicklaus the greatest golfer ever or at least before Tiger Woods, and Johnny Miller who finished #1 on the money list in 1974 and #2 in 1975. Miller and Nicklaus were both in contention before the day started, Miller actually bogied 18 or he would have been in the playoff too. If that's not beating the big boys, I don't know what is.

Nostalgia is great, but only if the story being told holds up to the facts. Seitz fails miserably at doing that simple task.

Besides, what's with a Masters' preview over a week before the tournament starts? Is Golf World forgetting there is a Golf Major Championship being played this week or do they just not care?

Linked to- Basil, Third World County,

Labels: , , ,

Out of touch

The editor of the Sun-Sentinel editorial page, Earl Maucker writes the following.

Yes, we have a policy not to use the names of juveniles accused of crimes.

We feel that in most cases where juvenile offenders are involved, their interests trump public curiosity and we elect not to name them. It could be argued that that kind of negative publicity could mark them for life, so we err on the side of being sensitive.

Once someone is charged as an adult, however, or if the crime is so heinous that it is in the public interest to name the offender, we will publish the name.
Then read this post of mine on a Sun-Sentinel story in May 2005.

LAKE WORTH — The two officers stared down at the pile of stones, saw only a small hand and a foot sticking out and assumed the little girl they had frantically searched for was dead.

Finally, they had found her at a secluded landfill, her body stuffed inside a large bright yellow recycling bin, with rocks and crushed concrete covering her. The bin lay inside a trash container, a dismal last resting place.

The officers summoned a superior, Lake Worth Detective Lt. Dave Matthews, who, after seven tense hours of hunting, also thought the case had ended in the worst of tragedies.

And then something happened.

"Her hand just moved!" Matthews shouted.

Moments later, the officers had unearthed an 8-year-old girl who had lived through a nightmare but survived to identify a teenager as her abductor, sexual attacker and would-be killer, police said.
That was the Palm Beach Post's coverage of the story. My post continued-

The girl was in St. Mary's Medical Center in West Palm Beach Sunday, where medical staff said she was in good condition. Her alleged assailant, Milagro Cunningham, 17, of Lake Worth, was in custody, on charges of attempted murder, sexual battery and false imprisonment. Police said he had confessed.


Contrast the Palm Beach Post coverage of this story with the one in today's Sun Sentinel.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel is not identifying the suspect or the victim because of their ages and the nature of the charges. Their relatives are also not being identified.
A juvenile charged with adult crimes,who committed heinous acts. Either Earl Maucker doesn't understand the Sun-Sentinel's newsroom policy or is a very bad liar. Yesterday we had a Sun-Sentinel reporter who couldn't do first grade math. What a sad state of affairs at a South Florida newspaper.

Linked to- Bullwinkle, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,

Labels: ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is The New York Times. They get the award for the following.

The cover article in The Times Magazine on March 18 reported on women who served in Iraq, the sexual abuse that some of them endured and the struggle for all of them to reclaim their prewar lives. One of the servicewomen, Amorita Randall, a former naval construction worker, told The Times that she was in combat in Iraq in 2004 and that in one incident an explosive device blew up a Humvee she was riding in, killing the driver and leaving her with a brain injury. She also said she was raped twice while she was in the Navy.

On March 6, three days before the article went to press, a Times researcher contacted the Navy to confirm Ms. Randall’s account. There was preliminary back and forth but no detailed reply until hours before the deadline. At that time, a Navy spokesman confirmed to the researcher that Ms. Randall had won a Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal with Marine Corps insignia, which was designated for those who served in a combat area, including Iraq, or in direct support of troops deployed in one. But the spokesman said there was no report of the Humvee incident or a record of Ms. Randall’s having suffered an injury in Iraq. The spokesman also said that Ms. Randall’s commander, who served in Iraq, remembered her but said that her unit was never involved in combat while it was in Iraq. Both of these statements from the Navy were included in the article. The article also reported that the Navy had no record of a sexual-assault report involving Ms. Randall.

After The Times researcher spoke with the Navy, the reporter called Ms. Randall to ask about the discrepancies. She stood by her account.

On March 12, three days after the article had gone to press, the Navy called The Times to say that it had found that Ms. Randall had never received imminent-danger pay or a combat-zone tax exemption, indicating that she was never in Iraq. Only part of her unit was sent there; Ms. Randall served with another part of it in Guam. The Navy also said that Ms. Randall was given the medal with the insignia because of a clerical error.

Based on the information that came to light after the article was printed, it is now clear that Ms. Randall did not serve in Iraq, but may have become convinced she did. Since the article appeared, Ms. Randall herself has questioned another member of her unit, who told Ms. Randall that she was not deployed to Iraq. If The Times had learned these facts before publication, it would not have included Ms. Randall in the article.
Here is a link to the original article.

Three days before the deadline, but 6 days before the story was published. The Times knew they were telling lies but once again in this sad publication's mind, the truth be damned. Republishing the weekly magazine would be costly but how about the damage to this paper's reputation for publishing lies. I guess anything goes with the NYT any more today. At this rate they'll have a reputation equivalent to The National Enquirer.

For printing lies, The New York Times is today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Other blogs discussing this story- Michelle Malkin, GI in Korea, The Anchoress, Iowa Voice, Sister Toldjah, Lorie at Wizbang,
Linked to- Amboy Times, Basil, Blue Star, Conservative Thoughts, Jo, Leaning Straight Up, Outside the Beltway, Perri Nelson, Pirate's Cove, Random Yak, Right Voices, Right Wing Nation, StikNstein, Third World County,

Labels: ,

My visit to the dermatologist

I'm a 13-year malignant melanoma survivor. Not just one of these dangerous skin cancers, but four. All of them diagnosed in 1993-94.

This combined with my having dysplastic nevi syndrome means I need to have regular(2-3 times a year) skin checkups. Yesterday was my most recent and I got a clean bill of health from Dr. Harold Rabinowitz.

If you're a malignant melanoma survivor living in Dade or Broward County, Dr. Rabinowitz is the best and I strongly suggest you have him for your dermatologist. He has offices in Plantation and the U of Miami area. If you need more info on the doctor, leave me a comment with your email address included and I'll get back to you. The doctor is a 45 mile for me, but he is worth it.

The next best dermatologist in this area, is Dr. Richard Rubenstein. He has offices in Delray Beach and Tamarac.

Palm Beach County Dermatologist Howard Green should be avoided like the plague. He has the bedside manner of a guerilla and I think I'm being guerillas. Avoid Dr. Scott Fayne of Jupiter also. That's unless you want to spend time arguing with ignorant office staff. Melanoma patients always have followup visits.

Linked to- Basil, Bullwinkle, Jo, Right Wing Nation,

Labels: , ,

Monday, March 26, 2007


The Washington Post is reporting the following.

Immigrants are emerging as among the first victims of a growing wave of home foreclosures in the Washington area as mortgage lending problems multiply locally and across the country.

Nationally, 375,000 high-interest-rate loans were made to Hispanics in 2005, and nearly 73,000 of them are likely to go into foreclosure, said Aracely Panameno, director of Latino affairs for the Center for Responsible Lending. About 1.1 million homes in the United States are expected to go into foreclosure in the next six years, and many native-born Americans are likely to be stuck with burdensome loans. But immigrants are getting hit first in part because their incomes tend to be lower and many have lost construction jobs.

Michelle Malkin is saying the word illegal is missing from the story. Implying its illegal aliens that are being foreclosed on.

A closer examination of the WAPO story uses the example of two families who face foreclosure.

Nahid Azimi, who immigrated to the United States from Afghanistan 22 years ago, recently stood in the upstairs hallway of her home in Loudoun County, silently sobbing as she removed the last of her personal items from the $410,000 townhouse in South Riding she bought with pride last summer. She said she was persuaded to buy the house by an Afghan real estate agent she considered a friend and by an Afghan mortgage broker who promised to get her a good loan.

Instead, Azimi, a cashier at Giant who makes $2,400 a month, found herself strapped into a no-down-payment loan with payments of $3,800 a month.


"I can't do it anymore," said Azimi, 44, a U.S. citizen. "I cannot afford it, and I don't want them to come one day and put my stuff on the street."

Note Mr. Azimi is a US citizen, not an illegal immigrant. Also how does a home loan get made to someone who can't meet the payment based on their current income? Something tells me there was some kind of fraud involved.

Here is the second immigrant story mentioned in the Post article.

Francisco Santos, 31, who lays tile, makes $60,000 a year by working seven days a week. He became convinced that real estate was a can't-lose proposition after the value of the townhouse he had bought in Woodbridge in 2002 for $95,000 climbed to $230,000. He and his wife, Linda, a homemaker, traded up to another house and banked part of their profits. The Spanish-speaking real estate agents with whom he negotiated the purchase persuaded him to borrow against his equity to move up again.


"I feel terrible," said Santos, a legal immigrant.

Neither are illegal alien stories. So is there really a word missing? Unless we assume all hispanics are illegals or take this little snippet as proof of what Michelle is asserting.

Another was an illiterate carpenter who bought a $750,000 house in Ashburn Village, Semidey said.
Illiterates come in all types, immigrant and non-immigrant.

The Post may not be telling the whole side of the story but Michelle is drawing assertions that no basis in what was written. She supplies no proof for that 'missing word', just links to past posts of hers that disprove nothing in the Post article. Disinformation too often goes both ways in the immigration debate.

Linked to- Basil, Blue Star, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,

Labels: , ,

Now for the math challenged

We had the geographically challenged MSM this morning, now its a Sun-Sentinel writer named Jason B. Gumer who can't add.

By Jason B. Gumer
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Posted March 26 2007

West Delray – The Lakes of Delray community's clubhouse has yet to reopen, more than 15 months after Hurricane Wilma damaged the building.
Hurricane Wilma came ashore October 24th, 2005, there are twelve months in a year. That makes it seventeen months not fifteen. Unless Mr. Gumer and his editors at the Sun-Sentinel failed the first grade when most children are taught the months in the year and how many.

Linked to- Overtaken by events, Right Wing Nation, Third World County,

Labels: ,

Geographically challenged

I've never been a fan of Mark Steyn. His few appearances on television have made him come over as bombastic rather than well informed. What my wife refers to as 'An empty can is noisy'. That has largely turned me off from reading his columns. TFM's favorite conservative columnist by a mile is the Washington Post's, Charles Krauthammer.

Back to Steyn, he seems a bit confused to me in the following column.

When Anna Nicole meets an untimely end in the Caribbean, there's 24/7 coverage.
When did Ms. Smith's death transfer from Florida to the Caribbean? Florida is not considered part of the Caribbean. Just go and check out an encyclopedia or one of the many websites listing travel to Florida and the Caribbean separately.

Either Mark Steyn needs some geography lessons, or TFM missed Florida's seceding from the union.

Hat tip- Michelle Malkin
Linked to- Conservative Thoughts, Right Wing Nation, StikNstein, Third World County,

Labels: ,

The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Sergio Garcia. He gets the award for the following.

DORAL – Sergio Garcia confirmed his unusual hole-in-one at the 13th hole Saturday at the CA Championship at Doral.

Unhappy with his bogey there, he retrieved his ball and then spit into the cup.

NBC reported that viewers called to complain.

Garcia didn’t deny it.

“I did, I’m not going to say no,” Garcia told NBC. “It went down in the middle. It wasn’t going to affect anybody else.

“I just missed the putt and wasn’t very happy.”


Geoff Ogilvy played in the twosome behind Garcia but wasn’t aware the cup had been lubricated.

"I didn’t lick my fingers anyway after I played that hole,” Ogilvy said. “And I wash my hands before I eat.”

Ogilvy didn’t like the idea another player had spit into the cup.

“It’s probably not the right way to play,” Ogilvy said.
No it isn't Geoff. Garcia deserves to be fined for his misconduct but I'm betting the PGA Tour does nothing. The Tour and the USGA didn't penalize Tiger Woods after he defaced a green two years ago at the US Open.

Sergio Garcia may not be fined or penalized, but he is today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Linked to- Basil, Blue Star, Cao, DragonLady, Jo, Leaning Straight Up, Perri Nelson, Right Voices, Shadowscape,

Labels: , , ,

Listed on BlogShares