Friday, April 29, 2005

Thinking about a New Blog.

I downloaded some blog/CMS frameworks last night. Nucleus and Geeklog. I got Geeklog up and running on my site for a domain I have. It was not too tough! I have two sites I run and I may convert those sights into straight PHP/HTML to those frameworks. Certainly a site I am dreaming up is going to be setup with that. Also, I am thinking about converting Blogger Beer to that format. Geeklog has the look and feel of the Dummocrats site.

Will keep you posted.

Quite a bit in Today's Post Crescent.

Today's Post Crescent.

Quite a bit of silliness in today's Post Crescent. First off, in the calls section we have a goof who has no clue about feral cats. He says those who think killing feral cats will save the birds probably thinks killing woodpeckers will save the forests. What a moron. I have sent many bits over the wire on this topic and another 4,000 or so bits will add very little to this.

We have Earl Gates whining about the President's nominees for the judiciary. What Mr. Gates so conveniently forgets is it takes two to be partisan. The left is not interested in justices as they are legislators.

One fellow who reappeared in the letter's section is Robert Nordlander. For those of you who don't know Robert Nordlander he is an atheist and I believe he is on a mission with the zeal that is quite religious. What is that mission? To convert us rubes to his faith. He denies the religious basis for the founding of our nation and government. He does this by quoting James Madison. Sure, Robert, you can find a quote from a person or two. How about what the First President did while in office? Sure the opinion and actions of George Washington count for something? No? Nordlander then goes onto talk about the enlightened thinkers of the 1600s and 1700s who fought against the church. I say unto you Robert Nordlander: So? We have a lot more quotes than you do!

Sunshine in the Valley.

Good Morning,

Just took Claudia to work and have sometime before I must depart.

In any event there is nothing on the agenda today. I do owe you the next installment of "Marcus in Arabia: The Ubiquitous Chinese Restaraunt" but I have a feeling it will not happen today. It will be a take it as it comes today.

Have a good one!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

The Last Bit.

PresI, originally uploaded by maurelius.

The President Waves Goodbye to Appleton.

I snapped this picture on March 30, 2004. President Bush was in Appleton and delivered a speech to the Chamber of Commerce. Yours truly was asked to drive in the motorcade. It was real exciting and quite inspiring.

Even if the President who is visiting is not your person, go see a presidential visit. Do not protest (you don't have to cheer either) but take it all in!



Starting tomorrow the quantity of my blogging is going to noticeably decrease. I hope to continue on as I have been but it will be harder.

We will be away this weekend and I hope to be able to blog but I have no idea how much I'net access I will have. Even after the weekend blogging will be pretty much kept to the early mornings later afternoon through the evening.

Thanks for your understanding and support!

Another Step to the Tarpits.

For the MSM. This story by Patrick is interesting. It seems like we can also tag the MSM as the "ELM" Enron Like Media.

Boy, they MSM thought the blogosphere went crazy with Rather and Jordan Eason.

Sgrena's Car.

Remember Sgrena that Italian journalist whose car was shot up in Baghdad and an Italian agent was killed?

I just heard a report on CBS news that the sattelite data shows the car to have been going 60mph+!

That is not slow!

Reid's Offer.

Yesterday Senator Reid and the Senate Democrats offered to allow the senate to vote on three blocked judges in exchange for not amending the Senate rules to disallow the filibuster of judicial nominees. Senator Frist correctly turned the offer down.

Certainly the left does not like any of the nominees, and do not want any of them in line for the Supreme court nomination. This is not the issue anymore it is a larger one. Rush brought this up yesterday. If the filibuster goes away for judicial nominees then the left will not be able to filibuster any upcoming supreme court nominee, the left odes not want to lose that handy weapon.

As to the constant claims of constitutionality of the filibuster make (both sides make arguments about that) you should know my opinion of that. Both arguments are rubbish.

The prudence of the abolishing the filibuster is the question. I lean to the Republican side (duhh, I am a Republican) because the present battle is the one you focus on winning. If the judicial filibuster goes away (it is seeming more and more likely) then there will be a day when the GOP wishes they had it or the Dems will someday repeal the filibuster in another situation they find convenient for the own purposes. Such shows the need to win elections.

The left pulled this weapon out way too soon. They should have waited until they saw the whites of a supreme court nominee's eyes. I don't feel bad for them.

Another example of how the filibuster is not The Suppressed Blog!

Stanley Kurtz on the Culture War.

"Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me." Source: Matthew 24:9.
While being put to death is not yet happening here in the USA on account of Jesus the left in this nation is becoming unhinged by believers. Stanley Kurtz on NRO pens an article talking about a Harper's article.

Harper's Magazine's May cover stories about "The Christian Right's War On America," frightened me, although not the way Harper's meant them to. I fear these stories could mark the beginning of a systematic campaign of hatred directed at traditional Christians. Whether this is what Harper's intends, I cannot say. But regardless of the intention, the effect seems clear.
Source: Stanley Kurt - Scary Stuff

This is the kind of stuff I too fear and has been noted with respect to conservative speakers. The call to direct mild violence with those the left disagrees with. The reasoning being debate with those people would lend credence to their views so don't debate them pie them instead.

Read the article!

Welcome to the Blogroll!

Let us all welcome Sean's The American Mind, GBFan's The Spotted Horse, and Marie's A Far Right Conservative's View to the Blogger Beer blogroll!

Misleading Headline.

Found on The Drudge Report: "House Passes Abortion Restrictions for Minors... ". This refers to the Child Custody Protection act and this bill is designed to prevent minors from short-circuiting state parental notification laws by going out of state for an abortion.

This is not an additional restriction, it just makes sure the parents or at least an adult helps guide the young woman through a very difficult time. You know parental permission is not such a crazy thing here.

Minors need permission to get their ears pierced. So then why all of a sudden do we think a young woman who already displayed a lapse a good judgment will make the right call when it comes to abortion? I do support the provision (that is found in most if not all of these laws) to get permission from a judge instead of parents, in situations where the girl can reasonably suspect physical abuse from her parents due to the request.

AIRianna's Blog is Up!

Check it out!

What a riot! Actually it isn't AIRianna's but a spoof that appears in of all places, the Guardian! It is funny!

More Silliness From the Pages of the Post Crescent.

I excerpt a letter from today's Appleton Post Crescent.

Now we find out that the current pope, while in charge of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (formerly known as the Holy Office of the Inquisition) was responsible for the ruling during the recent campaign that American Bishops should deny Communion to another JFK — John Kerry — because of his support of a woman’s right to choose.

Could it be that the Republicans’ fears of 45 years ago will come true after all, but ironically to their benefit?

Bill Ellis,

Source: Appleton Post Crescent April 28, 2005 - 45 years later, Vatican, GOP on same page

Don't worry Mr. Ellis, you are not the only person to completely miss the point of communion denial. You see Mr. Ellis, the Church considers abortion (enough of the euphemisms please) to be a grave sin. This is not on the same level as cussing, or fibbing, but real serious sin. When someone commits real serious sin they are supposed to avoid taking communion and get their soul to penance ASAP. Part of the penitential rite is earnest regret and sincere resolve to give up the sinfulness.

Now, the Church has noted that prominent politicians are in a position to bring an end to the abomination of abortion. If they support abortion then they are in a position of support and are therefore committing grave sin and should be refraining from taking the sacrament. Of course one could say they should receive penance and all is right, but would it be? This is treating the soul as a septic tank of sin.

The main point is the denial of communion is a teaching moment. If a Catholic politician doesn't want to treat it as such then perhaps they are really not Catholic.

Sunshine In The Valley.

Good Morning,

Welcome to another day of life, welcome to another day of Blogger Beer!

Oh what today?

I don't know the only thing I can think of is an announcement that I need to make, but that will be later tonight. Uh, uh, as it comes I guess! I do owe you "The Ubiquitous Chinese Restaraunt" and I hope to get that to you today!

Have a good one!

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

The Last Bit.

Inspiration hit me in a most unusual fashion tonight. I was writing a blog over at the Badger Blog Alliance and it hit me. There is one story out there that essentially repels me more strongly than a week old dead skunk. At the BBA I was writing on the fact that this topic (without revealing the topic) is a suppressed blog, because at times I do find myself wanting to write on it, if only to apply a one word label.

Anyway tonight's The Last Bit

The Suppressed Blog

I dare not blog The Suppressed Blog
If I do
We will regret the howling dog

I dare not reveal The Suppressed Blog
If I do
It will cause your skin to peel

I dare not write The Suppressed Blog
If I do
It will cause you a fright

I dare not bare The Suppressed Blog
If I do
It will cause great despair

I dare not type the Suppressed Blog
It is a great freak of nature
It will scare the bold and the meek
It will frighten the old and young


Good Night and God Bless You!

Procedural Squabbles.

Another procedural squabble is really heating up the Congress. This one is the
ethics committee. The Republicans offered to restore the old house ethics
committee rules.

The Democrats were upset by the change of committee rules. The old rules
specified in the event of a deadlock on a vote investigation would continue.
The new rules calls for a dismissal of the charges in the event of a deadlock

The Democrats turned down the offer. Rush predicted the Dems would turn it
down as soon as the offer became public and his prediction turned out
correct. He sees a couple of things that would cause disadvantage for the
Democrats in all of this.

If the charges against DeLay were brought to the committee and the committee
would not be able to find anything then the story is done. Right now the
Democrats and their sympathizers in the MSM can keep the DeLay ethics story
going. If the charges are dismissed the story is done it loses all

Two there is concern about similar ethics charges against themselves. Rush
points out there is an active ethics investigation against Jim McDermott from
Washington and even the MSM has noted quite a few Democrats are scrambling to
file reports and amending turned in reports on their travels.

Fwd: Procedural Squabbles.

Another procedural squabble is really heating up the Congress. This one is
the ethics committee. The Republicans offered to restore the old house
ethics committee rules.

The Democrats were upset by the change of committee rules. The old rules
specified in the event of a deadlock on a vote investigation would continue.
The new rules calls for a dismissal of the charges in the event of a deadlock

The Democrats turned down the offer. Rush predicted the Dems would turn it
down as soon as the offer became public and his prediction turned out
correct. He sees a couple of things that would cause disadvantage for the
Democrats in all of this.

If the charges against DeLay were brought to the committee and the committee
would not be able to find anything then the story is done. Right now the
Democrats and their sympathizers in the MSM can keep the DeLay ethics story
going. If the charges are dismissed the story is done it loses all

Two there is concern about similar ethics charges against themselves. Rush
points out there is an active ethics investigation against Jim McDermott from
Washington and even the MSM has noted quite a few Democrats are scrambling to
file reports and amending turned in reports on their travels.

What's That Noise I hear?

Its loser leftists screaming about their freedom of speech.

Apparently Air America on its way to even higher heights of irrelevance aired a commercial that caught the attention of the Secret Service. It was a commercial suggesting violence against the President due to his attempts at reforming social security.

It is a well known fact to advocate violence against the President is a no-no. Not to be done in humor, not to be done artistically, just don't do it! Yes, I know the left none the less is going to scream about censorship and whine about how our nation is becoming a theocracy.

The details can be found at Little Green Footballs.


  • 10:15 am 4/27/2005
  • Changed "urging violence" to "suggesting violence".


FIGHT FOR DEMOCRACY: Recently, I heard a powerful speech to Congress by Ukraine President Victor Yushchenko on freedoms and democracy in the Ukraine. We cannot allow the administration to water down our own freedoms and liberties here in the United States to further its political agenda. The administration is further brazenly trying to eliminate the filibuster, which is the only tool the minority party has to block the appointment of radical cabinet members and judges. The Democrats have to have the resolve to fight this injustice. A greater percentage of justices were already approved during this administration than during the Clinton administration.

Tom Van Elzen,

Source: It's Your Call - The Appleton Post Crescent April 27, 2005

Well, at least he didn't use the same exact wording from the MoveOn form but it pretty much is straight from the MoveOn form.

The administration is NOT trying to eliminate the filibuster. The SENATE Republicans are looking at barring the use of filibusters to prevent votes on judicial appointments! The senate STILL will still have an advise and consent role to play. Yes, Tom we know a greater percentage of Bush appointments were approved than Clinton appointments, but guess what? How many of them were filibustered?

Ah yes, the ole radical word. The only thing radical about the these justices is they don't genuflect in front of the Roe v. Wade altar.

Again let me remind everyone the filibuster is NOT a check and balance! I dare all to find it in the constitution. It is NOT there! The filibuster is a procedural rule nothing more nothing less. The congress is duly authorized to write its rules to conduct its business.

Tom Van Elzen start clearing another space on your mantle! Yes, Tom Van Elzen you have just won your second Eight-Ball award!

What an effort by Tom!
Tom's Second Eight-Ball!

Great Grains...

of beer!

As most people are aware of beer aside from water the main ingredient of beer is grains. Barley in particular. The majority of the barley is malted> What exactly is malted barley?

Malted barley is barley that is moistened and encouraged to sprout and during the sprouting process the barley is dried out and essentially the maltmeister kills the barley plant that was growing. What exactly does this accomplish? It starts the germination process and the plant starts to create enzymes needed to convert the starch in the seed to sugars. It is this combination of starch and enzymes the masher needs.

The next step is to crack the barley-corn, not into fine powder but into largish pieces, all we are trying to do here is to crack open the barley-corns so water can get at the contents of the corns more easily. Then we start to mash.

Mashing is the process of converting the starch in the barley-corns. This is done by steeping the corns in warm water for a time. The warm water plus the enzymes convert the starch into sugars and that is what we want! There are two types of sugars that can be formed, one type of sugar gets consumed by the yeast and turns into alcohol, the other sugar is not converted into alcohol but stays with the brew and adds to the beer's taste characteristics when consumed! The masher can favor one type of sugar by altering the temperature of the mash mix.

Malted barley is not the only grain used in the creation of beer, but it is the main one. Wheat, oats, unmalted barley, rice, toasted & roasted grains, etc can also be used. Wheat for instance is a significant ingredient in weiss beers (e.g. Hacker Pschorr), other grains utilized add color, body, or other flavors the brewer wants.

In the next installment we talk about hops!

Sunshine in the Valley!

Good Morning Bbbbbblllllllllllllogoshepre!

What is going on today? A consultation with an oral surgeon for one, finishing some paperwork, getting a new anti-virus, what else? Oh yeah writing for Blogger Beer and the Badger Blog Alliance!

I have no agenda today it is a free blog Wednesday!

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

The Last Bit.

ZebraGNU, originally uploaded by maurelius.

These Gnus are Not Unix!

Zebras & gnus were almost always found in each other's company. I heard it said Gnus were the last creaturs God made and he made them from all of the leftover parts. So true!

One last thing, whenever we were near a herd of gnu and/or zebras a couple would always keep a very sharp eye on us. Something I saw them do with other critters such as lions.

Good Night & May God Bless You!

Daniel Pipes and the WOT.

Earlier I pointed out a Daniel Pipes column. The title of that column is: "Washington Finally Gets It on Radical Islam"

For years one cliche bandied about by those critical of the WOT was it did not have a "hearts and minds" component, that it did not fight the ideological war that is every much a part of the WOT as it was during the Cold War.

First point Daniel makes:
Does the Bush administration really believe, as its leadership has kept repeating since right after 9/11, that Islam is a "religion of peace" not connected to the problem of terrorism? Plenty of indications suggested that it knew better, but year after year the official line remained the same. From the outside, it seemed that officialdom was engaged in active self-delusion.
Source: Daniel Pipes - Washington Finally Gets It on Radical Islam

The problem I have with this and Daniel really should know better is we must make a careful distinction between good Muslims and bad Muslims. Surely, if a Christian sect were forcing people to drink scrub water from the local church or temple to determine their guilt or innocence we would make a distinction, would we not?

One thing I found with Arabic Muslims (I guess this applies to all Muslims but my experience is with Arab Muslims) in particular and people of a given faith in general is to circle the wagons if they sense they are being attacked. One incident I recall vividly were with two students who had taken offense to a particular cartoon that was ripping on the Taliban. The girls did not get that out (English was not their first language) of the cartoon and were PO'ed at it. I explained to them this cartoon was directed at the Taliban and explained to them about the nastiness of the Taliban. One girl got my point immediately and was explaining to her friend. I told them if you lived in Tali-Land they would not be here at their nice university. I don't know if the one girl was convinced about the real nature of the cartoon but the other definitely was.

This is very important we do not drive moderate Muslims into a coalition with the not so moderate; bad for us, bad for the moderates, and good for the bad guys. The President and his team know this and are careful not to offend Islamic sensibilities and have worked to isolate the bad from the good. I think the state of affairs on that has worked acceptably well.

Mr. Pipes highlights efforts from funding more moderate imans, funding schools to compete with the Madrassas, funding math & science class in madrassas, and repairing and building mosques. Mr. Pipes commends these measures but wonders if the repair and building of mosques with taxpayer dollars is a violation of the establishment clause.

This is all done quietly as one would expect. Duuuuuhhhh! If Saudi Arabia were to announce it was going to launch a major campaign to educate Catholics how would we respond? As it turns out when the Federal Government announces it is going to start an Arabic media project we get all sorts of (American) goofs denouncing it as cheap propaganda, why would some of these projects be hailed with open arms in Islamic societies?

Yes, I know when a Sbarros Pizzeria in Israel gets bombed the blogosphere resonates with "ROP" but we really need to understand the moderate Muslims are in this fight with us. Think about it, if you are a moderate imam are you going to speak up to another imam who can fatwa you dead? I suspect most will not speak out.

Marcus in Arabia: Bus Trip to Arusha and Dark Bars.

We bought our tickets, had our bags loaded up, and got on our bus. IIRC we were not the only mzungu on the bus but for whatever reason we did not cluster with them. The bus was crowded but everyone had their own seat which were more comfortable than airliner seats. I had John Grisham's The Firm with me. We set off.

I was glad to get out Dar Es Salaam, but of course there was a good ten hours of unknown only to be followed by more unknown, at least Dar was a known entity. The bus trip was interesting, at times I had cartoonish images in my mind of how our bus must appeared while hitting bumps and going around curves. From time to time we would pull up to a bus stop. People get on, people get off, vendors scramble to sell food, drink and trinkets to us; people get off to refresh themselves and returning. I remember they had music going and it varied between the local music (think Paul Simon's Graceland and you are close) or Bob Marley. Bob has quite a worldwide following. The wonder of driving into a new land is the same as flying into a new land.

Many new sights, I still remember the sausage trees in this one strip of land. There was a high ridge off of the road by about a mile, the whole of the landscape was grass with scrubby trees. Between the ridge and the road were sausage trees, that had these sausage like pods hanging down from the trees. I never got a close look but that particular image is still in my mind.

Like any trip into the unknown it took a long time, even longer than it took. When I have no reference to gauge the trips progress it seems to drag on longer. The return seems quicker. Eventually the daylight faded and it started to get dark. I remember getting apprehensive as the last thing I wanted to do was to find a place when the only knowledge I had of Arusha was the Lonely Planet Guide in our hands.

It was dark by the time we arrived. We got off of the bus and grabbed our bags and before we knew what was going on a tout had glommed onto our luggage and whisked us away. No he was not after our belongings he was after paying customers for one of his clients. We went to the Equatorial Hotel which was considered to be the upscale hotel in town. We checked in, paid the mzungu rate and got to our room.

We kicked back for a bit, unpacked and unwound. Of course we were hungry and thirsty and we quickly located the hotel's bar & restaurant. I ordered a gin and tonic (I want to call it a ginnintonic per The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy) and a steak. See my previous Marcus in Arabia for the standard restaurant review. I made a point to drink gin and tonics over other drinks! Why?

Malaria! Do you know the origin of the gin and tonic? The British with their colonial outposts over the world were subject to catching malaria. Eventually quinine was discovered and the British found it quite distasteful so they tried to take it with water. The stuff was still horrible so they put bubbles in their quinine-water, yuck! Then they tried a quinine-water-bubble-gin concoction! I wonder how long it took for the lime to find its way into that mix! Seriously, we were taking malaria prophylaxis pills and had a full range of immunizations.

What dark bar is complete without skullduggery? This bar provided it as well. Two guys found out we were new in town and looking for safaris and a mountain climb. So they sat down with us and told us they had two people leaving the next morning for a safari and needed another two to fill up the trip. They gave us a "good rate" too! My colleague and I later on supposed the two to leave the next morning were us. We didn't go with them.

We had planned the trip out to allow us some time to shop our mountain climbing and safari needs sufficiently. It was a very good thing!

Next Installment: Marcus in Arabia: The Ubiquitous Chinese Restaurant.

A Need For SDI!

With the War on Terror many have told us we don't need SDI, the terrorists are going to sneak their bomb over on a freighter and SDI can not defend against that. They remind us the terrorists hijacked airliners and converted them into guided missiles, that SDI would have failed against that attack as well.

All of the President's men and all of the President's forces did not prevent 9/11, do we then give up on our conventional forces? In any event there are evolving threats that SDI is well suited to defend against.

Wretchard at the Belmont Club has pulled together various sources that point out the Mad Mullahs of Iran are not only working on a nuclear weapon capability but also ballistic missiles. With this capability the Mad Mullahs have the capability to launch a electro-magnetic pulse attack. While analysts do not believe Iran is capable of an attack that would devastate the entire nation's electrical distribution system and electronics, it would do significant damage. This is not to be ignored!

This is the realm of SDI. A robust SDI shield would be able to repel such an attack. In my estimation (FWIW) I do not believe Iran capable of a large scale missile attack that could overwhelm a robust SDI system.

The other mode of attack Iran could launch is of course, a blockade of the Persian Gulf and attack tankers in the Sea of Oman. Claudia, my father and myself spent a weekend on that Sea and the line of tankers waiting to dash in, load up, and dash out of the Persian Gulf was quite long. It is my supposition Iran will NOT attack tankers and will not choke the supply of oil.

For starters the threat of a tanker war is enough to keep most nations at bay. I also believe any attack will force nations to take a side and since Iran would be doing the shooting, I believe most nations would be hostile to Iran. I think US forces would be able to sink the Iranian navy fairly quickly and the missile sites on the coast would be destroyed in fairly quick order.

The best option though is always preemption. We too have weapons against Iran and our most potent weapon is liberty! Our nation needs to encourage the movement to a liberal system of government in Iran. The nation is not stable and the Mullahs quite often have to use brutal force against the population. We need to encourage the people to rise up and put the Mullahs down. As Michael Ledeen always says: "Faster please!".

I Would Love To. . .

Fully comment on this Daniel Pipes column because there is much to comment on! However, I have other things I have to do at the moment. Read it and I will provide my commentary later on.

HT: Little Green Footballs.

Vague Guidelines & The Constitution.

Yesterday, my blog on the radical doctrine of church-state separation elicited the following comment:
Second: the Constitution is a profoundly vague document. I'm of the opinion that this was an intentional strategy. It was written that way precisely to allow lots of future leeway. Otherwise, wouldn't it be more clearly written, without all those inkblots?
JPE comments from: TotC Talks About My Activist Judges Blog.

I agree with JPE here, the Constitution had to be a general document, the founding fathers knew things would change and were more intent upon laying down general guidelines rather than specifics. The specifics come from legislation not the constitution. For example we have freedom of the press but did not go into further detail as to what constitutes the press.

Does this give a problem for textualists? I saw someone somewhere (blogger) accuse Justice Scalia of reading the constitution and law like a fundy reads the Bible. When it says the world was created in seven days, gosh darnit it means seven 24 hour 60 minute/hour 60 second/minute periods and nothing else! I disagree with this accusation.

I was unable to read the book further last night but I wonder how textualists deal with vagueness.

I would also guess that one can see the language in constitutional amendments tighten up in specificity as time goes on.

Blogger Beer is Evolving!

Blogger Beer is now a "flappy bird" in the TTLB ecosystem! What the hey am I talking about? TTLB is another blog (The Truth Laid Bear) and if you link to the TTLB and put the correct code onto your blog, then TTLB tracks links to your blog.

The more links to your blog the farther along you are in the TTLB evolutionary path. Day one I was "an insignificant microbe" because it had not yet tracked Blogger Beer. Then Blogger Beer spent 3-4 days as a "slithering reptile" and just today Blogger Beer evolved into a flappy bird! Progress is being made!

Thanks to you dear reader!

AIRrianna Is Brilliant!

AIRianna Huffington has come up with an absolutely brilliant idea. It is stunning no one thought of anything like it before. She has solved a big societal problem!

You know, there are Hollywood actors and other celebrities that just can not get their opinions out to the public! No one ever listens to them, they never get any attention from the MSM, such a shame. So AIRianna has devised a brilliant concept.

She is going to set up a blog for them to air their ideas! Wow! I hope she was able to secure enough funding. I am sure a project like this is going to take millions and millions of dollars to start. Her project is probably going to require so much funding only she may need to apply to the federal government for a grant on this. All those caviar and champagne parties they will need to hold are expensive! Also, don't forget those blog-thingies are high-tech so a blog system (especially one that can take blogs from multiple people) is going to be real big bucks! Heck even funding from George Soros may be required!

Oh AIRianna, how would those poor Hollywood celebrities and the nation get through life without you!

Sunshine in the Valley!

Good Morning,

Ahhh, a rainy night.

Anyway here is the agenda for today.

  1. Marcus in Arabia: Bus Trip to Arusha and Dark Bars.

  2. More Judiciary Blogging.

  3. AIRianna Huffington Has an Idea.

  4. As It Comes

  5. The Last Bit

Monday, April 25, 2005

The Last Bit.

Vulture1, originally uploaded by maurelius.

More lovely eating habits! Vultures feast on something. The vulure with the colorful head is the Maitre'd! Hahahahaha! No, it is an Anubian Vulture. Shot was taken on the Serrengetti Plain. © Marcus Aurelius.


Not blogger beer but real beer!

I can not believe it has taken me this long to blog on a topic near and dear to my heart.

I have not done so in a while but I am an occasional homebrewer. I have I want to say three batches of beer under my belt (literally)! The first two were brewed with liquid malt extracts (a real gooey substance that is mixed with water) and the last one was a whole grain brew.

The process is not too complicated (at least for extract beers). Pour the extract into a quantity of water, boil it for a while, add hops, cool it down, pour it into a fermentation vessel add yeast and let it go for about a week, siphon the brew into another vessel let it sit for a week to two weeks, mix in some more sugars to create carbonation, bottle it and let it sit for about another two weeks. Chill it and drink it.

Of course, sanitation and the logistics of it all adds factors of complication.

Our standard beer we buy in the store is a class of beer called a pilsner. It is light bodied and lightly hopped lager (not blogger). Don't let any Canadian or Aussie tell you their beer is so much more "beerly" than our beer. Their standard beers are the same as ours! I have had plenty of Aussie standard beer and plenty from Canada as well. They are all pilsners.

Of course not all beers are pilsners. Most people are at least aware of the stout beer, there are ales, there are bocks, there are porters, there are reds etc. There are many variety of beers and like wines each variety has a time and place.

The largest division of beers is the lager vs. ale beer. What's the difference? The yeast used to ferment the beer. Ale beers have more complicated tastes than lagers. Why? Because of byproducts from ale yeast fermentation called "esters". The esters give the ales hints of fruity flavors. This is why good wine testers talk of all sorts of fruits when tasting wine. Lager yeasts do not produce the same esters and lagers are usually fermented at cooler temperatures both contribute to a less complicated taste. Ales are easier to brew.

Next Blogger Beer Beer Blog I will talk about the grains used for brewing beer!

"Beer is Proof That God Loves Us and Wants Us To Be Happy!"
Benjamin Franklin

Marcus in Arabia: The Trip to Tanzania!

Ever wonder where those pictures of the lions, cheetahs, and so on come from? Read on, this is installment one in a series as long as it takes to get through it!

Marcus in Arabia: Mzungu in Africa!
Africa! A vast continent famous for its animals and for the history of its exploration. Famous too for the visit paid to it by Marcus Aurelius future wise and benevolent emperor of the blogsphere.

Without digging up my old passport I can not recall when I visited Africa. It was one of two trips I took during that particular summer break. I do not recall how it all started but it was with a colleague of mine from the math and computer department at the UAE University.

We decided to go to Tanzania for a couple of reasons one of them is some other colleagues had recently visited and told us they had a good time. Also, Kenya is the destination in East Africa and as a result it is developing tourist traps and tourist targeted crime. So Tanzania it was.

In any event Tanzania is quite a destination onto itself. We planned on a Mount Kilimanjaro climb, a Serrentgetti tour (aka safari), and a visit to Zanzibar. In order to prepare for the mountain climb I attempted to kick start a workout program but the workout program sputtered like a motorcycle ready for the junkyard. To prepare for the safari I bought two new camera lenses a 70—210 mm f2.8, a 300 mm f2.8, and a 2x teleconverter. Unfortunately, the 300 mm and teleconverter did not arrive until after we returned from Africa (Fortunately perhaps, it was pain enough lugging around what we had and this lens would have added to that pain). The zoom lens did a good job, but it would have been nice in a few situations to have been able to reach out further. I also bought cigars to smoke at the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro. We purchased our plane tickets and packed our bags.

Al-Ain had recently built an international airport so we decided we wanted to fly out of that airport for the novelty of it. So we boarded the plane and headed off to our first stop in Muscat (capital of Oman). Since we had a long layover they packed us up and put us in the local Novotel for the duration of the layover. Went to sleep, woke up, went back to the airport, boarded another plane. This plane went so far we landed in Abu Dhabi! So 12 hours of travel resulted in us covering 80 miles or so.

One of the things I like the best about traveling is the moments right before landing. I like to peer out of the window and see what the destination looks like from above. Any destination looks mysterious and wonderful from above and Dar Es Salaam (Dar Es Salaam, recall OBL bombed our embassies in Dar Es Salaam and Nairobi) was no exception. We got off the plane and quickly found out the wonderful part did not really hold up on closer scrutiny. I do not recall how we ended up in the hotel we spent the night in, but ended up there we did. They had an open air (but covered) bar/restaurant on top of the building and we eventually found our way up there. I sampled the beers (duh!) and found the local brew to not be about as good as Rhinelander beer but there was a regional beer (IIRC Tusker a Kenyan brew was the good beer) that was much better. The food was edible but not great, my companion tried local dishes and we quickly found out they were pretty bland.

The view from the building varied I remember looking out over the wall of the bar to the street and seeing people walk around. Nothing unusual about that. Looking out in another direction I could see a burning garbage dump. The hotel we stayed in was not that bad by Western standards, but it was no five star accommodation.

50 shillings for "mzungu" 25 for all others. What is a mzungu you ask? Simply put a white guy. Almost every where you went they would charge a mzungu more than they would a local. I wonder about blacks from Europe and the States, but I do not recall asking for clarification on that particular point. I really did not get worked up over it as the mzungu rates were still reasonable. The funniest mzungu line was in a bus station. We went to buy tickets for our return to the coast and the ticket agent proudly exclaimed they charge the same price for both blacks and mzungu. I don't think we are in Kansas anymore Toto.

Anyway, enough of that! The second day we had breakfast,checked out of the hotel, and went to the bus station. The bus station was quite a scene not the usual antiseptic building we in America think of; it was open, dusty, crowded, people coming and going, touts, vendors, taxi drivers and so on. It reminded me of the parking lot at an Alpine Valley Grateful Dead show. Our taxi driver was kind enough to convey us to a bus headed from to the safari center of Tanzania: Arusha.

Next Installment: Bus Trip to Arusha and Dark Bars.

To Sum Up.

Yes, I do believe the radical doctrine of separation is a result of judicial activism.

Paul's next question is then to ask what can be done to restore law to its correct state.

It comes down to judges and more importantly the schools. Justice Scalia in the book I am reading states laws schools do not spend much time on interpreting statutes. If law schools do not, guess what? It is going to be no better for those writing the laws. We have come to all but require judges be lawyers, that expectation while common for legislators can be characterized as required.

A legislative body can promulgate poorly written law and this invites judicial activism. Even well written law is not immune to activist interpretation but at least there would be one less avenue for an activist judge to drive down.

The fix is not a short term solution but is going to require patience and diligence.


TotC Talks About My Activist Judges Blog.

Paul at Teeth of the Constitution - Activist Judges, Left and Right makes his own comments on judicial activism as it relates to the Pryor vs. Moore case I discuss in my blog on judicial activism and the suitability of Bill Pryor to serve.

The problem Paul and many others have is how the concept of separation of church and state is way off from what the constitution actually dictates. The constitution does not actually call for the prohibition of prayer or religious expression on public property. In fact, the Ten Commandments are on display in the building of the Supreme Court of the United States.

The First Amendment states:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof...

Where does the First Amendment say strike down public prayer or public religious expression? I think it quite reasonable to say the First Amendment bars the Federal Congress from designating an official religion, from creating a church (ala Church of England) of the USA. It also bars the Federal Congress (hereafter referred to simply as Congress) from prohibiting religious practice (however, I know there are restrictions for example one can not practice human sacrifice as a matter of religious duty), so the constitution bars Congress from prohibiting say "The First Church of Elmer Fudd" from practicing its religious beliefs. How do these two ideas extend to the prohibition of prayer in schools? How does this bar the display of the Ten Commandments from a courthouse?

The source usually cited for the radical separation doctrine is an exchange of letters between (this website adheres to the radical separation doctrine) The Danbury Baptists and President Thomas Jefferson.

If the radical separation doctrine is the true meaning intended by the Founding Fathers then why did that vision take so long to come to pass? Why did the founding fathers not state those beliefs more fully in the Constitution? Why did the executive in those early years not more zealously carry out their duties? Why did Connecticut continue to recognize Congregationalism as its official religion for 30 years after the Constitution's ratification? (see MSN Encarta) Is it not plausible if Thomas Jefferson had meant his statement the way it is taken today by the radical-separationists, then he would have been duty bound to stamp out the officiality of Connecticut's religion? That perhaps, the "wall" quote is being abused today?

So what did Jefferson mean when he used the "wall" metaphor? Jefferson undoubtedly meant that the First Amendment prohibited the federal Congress from enacting any law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. As the chief executive of the federal government, the President's duty was to carry out the directives of Congress. If Congress had no authority in matters of religion, then neither did the President. Religion was clearly within the jurisdiction of the church and states. As a state legislator, Jefferson saw no problem with proclaiming days of thanksgiving and prayer, and even on one occasion prescribed a penalty to the clergy for failure to abide by these state proclamations. Jefferson believed that the Constitution created a limited government and that the states retained the authority over matters of religion not only through the First Amendment but also through the Tenth Amendment. (18) The federal government had absolutely no jurisdiction over religion, as that matter was left where the Constitution found it, namely with the individual churches and the several states.
Source: The Myth Behind "Separation of Church and State" by Mathew D. Staver, Esq. Liberty Counsel

The only way to arrive at the conclusion the separationists do is to ignore the clear words of the Constitution. Alas this is all too common. An anecdote Justice Scalia relates a brief he once read:
"Unfortunately, the legislative debates are not helpful. Thus, we turn to another guidepost in this difficult area, the statutory language."
See Note #1

The language of the Constitution is clear on this matter.


  1. Page 31, A Matter of Interpretation - Federal Courts and the Law. Antonin Scalia edited by Amy Gutmann published by Princeton University Press copyright 1997


  1. 4/25/2005, 6:35 pm.
  2. Initial publication. Expect heavy revision of this blog due to its nature.
  3. 4/25/2005, 6:55 pm.
  4. Clarified that the parenthetical note near the link to the Danbury Baptist Letter refers to the website itself and not the letter.

A New Graphics Server.

Yes, I am dropping Monkeyview.

First Monkeyview places restrictions on photo size. Then for the blog they place a stamp on the photo indicating their WWW address. The real objectionable part about that is I want to blog some pix from and event I was part of last March 30. The main character of that event is often derisively referred to as a monkey so instead of attacting my target audience the picture I have in mind it would probably draw a crowd coming to poke fun at the main character.

HT: To Ann Althouse for pointing out photo server!

Striving for Improvement.


It has been said by enough people of different relationships to myself that my writing is good. Some of these people are relatives but some too are complete strangers. I am pretty comfortable in believing the praise to be honest.

I am not trying to pump myself up here but it is good to hear it. Still, there are areas I know where I can improve my writing. I had a hard time with English in HS not because I found it difficult but because I bought into the notion that "it's completely obvious what I am writing!" Well of course it was! The problem was I would not or could not remove myself from myself and read my writing from another's perspective. My thoughts are obvious to myself so I was able to write my thoughts down in my own way and still completely understand what was being written.

So I was a slacker in HS English and in the little bit of College writing I had. I did pretty good in my math and science classes. How did I get to this situation then that I write a fair amount every day?

Passion for being an active participant in my community, whether that community be the local, state , national, or international! I started off by writing and debating on the Usenet (a collection of "chat-rooms" each newsgroup being devoted to a given topic. See this) It is called practice. I also read quite a bit not newspapers but mostly magazines and books. After awhile this reading the habits of good writing start to soak in.

None the less I know my writing can stand improvement. As I said I was less than an enthusiastic participant in my HS English classes and therefore my use of punctuation is spotty and perhaps wrong when it does happen. The problem here is incorrect punctuation does not flag itself like saying "2 + 2 = 22" (we are using the normal addition tables here) or a missspeelll, but incorrect punctuation can subtly change the meaning the writer intends.

An example of this would be a saying from President George HW Bush.

No new taxes!

What does that mean? It means he will not create any new taxes (raise). But this is what he should have said:

No, new taxes!

meaning he is going to bring new taxes. Now of course, we know he meant to pledge to not raise our taxes, but the history of this shows otherwise.

A little pocket grammar I bought has many examples of this sort of thing. The key to writing IMO is being able to shield your reading mind from writing mind.

Sunshine in the Valley!

Good Morning!

I just accepted an invitation to blog on the Badger Blog Alliance! I just left my inaugural blog over there! I intend to blog on Appleton and the surrounding area at the BBA. So don't expect Appleton blogs to disappear entirely from Blogger Beer, but most likely I will file those at the BBA rather then here.

How about those hot foxes in The Last Bit?

Anyway today I am going to put a few things on the agenda.


  1. Striving to Write Better!

  2. Marcus in Arabia: Trip to Africa Part I.

  3. A New Photo Server!

  4. The Role of the Judiciary and Law in Society: Ongoing

  5. As It Comes

  6. The Last Bit

Sunday, April 24, 2005

The Last Bit.

Fox5, originally uploaded by maurelius.

The last of the fox photos!

Brad is in the boat and the boat has an electric motor on it so Brad can be real quiet! Also, wouldn't you be totally oblivious if you had a bucket of dead fuzzy minnows to eat?
© Macurs Aurelius!


This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Trumpet Fanfare Please....

Two new additions to the blog roll.

One is Teeth of the Constitution. TotC is a Second Amendment specialist (but certainly not limited to) blog. Welcome to the Blogger Beer blogroll! One more step in the TTLB Ecosystem evolution process, this slithering reptile is pounding out a path for you!

The second one to be added is that of a political opponent (as opposed to enemy), the second such blog I have on the blogroll. That blog is: L'esprit d'escalier! L'espirt d'escalier came to my attention by JPE its owner, commenting on my blogs discussing Antonin Scalia's book A Matter of Interpretation. Welcome to the Blogger Beer blogroll!

A hearty welcome to you both and thanks for reading Blogger Beer!

Speaking of Legal Matters.

I am currently busy writing an offer to purchase a lot!

Last year June we tenered an offer on another lot but that was written by an attorney. This time I am doing it on my own with last year's work to serve as a sample. So this is why the blogging is off!

Besides, its Sunday!

Terri Schiavo, The Courts, and Personal Policy Preferences

As many know I opposed the murder of Terri Schiavo, I made no attempt to cover up that stand. Also as you can read I am commenting on Justice Scalia's book about interpretation of the law and about how judges should read and interpret law not make law.

Here is the instigating blog.

A reader of Blogger Beer (thanks to that reader for reading Blogger Beer and for commenting, this is why I take time to write this blog) JPE states:
The same trick in Holy Trinity was at issue in the Schiavo case, in which conservatives urged justices to overlook the plain language of the statute and instead defer to the intent of Congress.
Source: JPE's comment on Blogger Beer - Justice Scalia and The Courts.

Here are a couple of questions I have before I am ready to believe people were clamoring for judicial activism in the Schiavo case. Please note I do not refer to this as a left vs. right case as this case did cut across the left right divide (Jesse Jackson, Ralph Nader, a unanimous Senate, other lesser well known leftists were also fighting for Terri).

  1. What Florida laws were in play?
  2. This is where I am inclined to believe where the charge made by JPE is the strongest. I also believe (based on various reports) the Schindlers were out-lawyered from the very beginning and only towards the end did they get adequate representation but it was too late. The first courts to hear this fight were the ones who established the facts, and Schiavo's lawyer did a superb job of getting the court to accept their presented facts.
  3. What about the law passed by the Florida State Legislature and signed by Governor Bush?
  4. I recall it was deemed unconstitutional. What did the law state and on what grounds was it found unconstitutional? I take it, the bill was contrary to the Florida State Constitution. I do not recall the nitty-grittys here.
  5. The Congress issued a subpoena for Terri to appear before it.
  6. Why was that request flouted by a judge?
  7. The Federal Bill ordered the Federal court system here to conduct a De Novo review. Why did it not happen?
  8. James Sensensbrenner made a big deal over one word to make sure Congressional will was clear. The words were "may" and "shall". IIRC this is the objected to version (a paraphrase here) "the court may conduct a de novo review" here is the version that passed "the court shall conduct a de novo review".

    Mind you the constitution grants the power of determining the jurisdiction of the federal courts. What in the Federal Terri law gave the judge license to thumb his nose at it?

The Federal Congress passing Terri's law (with the unanimous consent of the Senate) was not out of bounds and the federal court was to perform a de novo review of the case. The court did not and I would like to know on what grounds did they refuse?

Sunshine in the Valley.

Good Morning!

Nothing on todays agenda; a free-blog Sunday.

I will be working on that Marcus in Arabia piece I talked about last night.

Have a Blessed Sunday!

Saturday, April 23, 2005

The Last Bit.

Yes my Blogger Beer Buddies,

It is time again for The Last Bit! Once again a photo, remember last night's photo of the Northern Wisconsin Red Fox? Tonight, it is that very same Northern Wisconsin Red Fox in a slightly different pose!

Red Fox Helping Itself to the Land's Bounty of Fish Guts.
A red fox helping itself to fish guts. Yum-yum-yum! © Marcus Aurelius

This is the same fox from last night's The Last bit Red foxes are normally very shy and reclusive but around the cabin they are not so shy and reclusive, they know it is easy eating around people. There is a lot of wildlife up at the cabin. Raccoons, otters, mink, beaver, muskrat, bobcats, bear, fisher, marten etc are all around (some more than others).

I have one more red fox picture to share tomorrow and then it is probably back to African pictures. Oh yeah, I need to do a Marcus in Arabia: The African Trip blog one of these days. I think I will pre-write that before I blog it so the writing is better!

Good Night and May God Bless You!

The Beeb Is Trying to Outdo CBS!

Get a load of this story from the UK! The London Telegraph (home of Sir John Keegan military historian extrodinaire) reports:
The BBC was last night plunged into a damaging general election row after it admitted equipping three hecklers with microphones and sending them into a campaign meeting addressed by Michael Howard, the Conservative leader.
Source: The London Telegraph - Tory fury as BBC sends hecklers to bait Howard

Let's see they emulate the crookedness of CBS, what now? Should we start a letter writing campaign to some town in Wales?

HT: The Drudge Report.

Helicopter Down and Krazy-Kos-Kiddies.

As well know a private helicopter was shot down a day or two ago in Iraq. On board were some Americans, Rumanians, and Filipinos (though this is not clear I have seen some reports label them as being from Fiji). All were killed but one survived the crash to be murdered by the terrorists.

Over at New Sisyphus they blogged about the fact we are in a real war and the idea of something less than brute force is going to bring the bad guys to bear is suicidal. Well shortly after the discussion started up some leftists joined in and essentially were damning the murdered as mercenaries who deserved no better. Yadda yadda yadda. Of course they did so anonymously.

Well as it turns out the heros of the Krazy-Kos-Kiddies were caught based on a tip from an Iraqi informant. No doubt the Krazy-Kos-Kiddies and the DU inmates are going to condemn the informant.

K. 626 Plays Again. :-(

K. 626 (K. means Köchel who was the first to catalog Mozart's work) is Mozart's last work the Requiem Mass (i.e. Mass for the Dead). This time the death is close to home though distant geographically.

We say a prayer for our dear deceased.

  1. 6:40 am 4/24/2005
  2. First paragraph reworded to eliminate silly redundancy.

Nowhere Does Justice Scalia state...

That a conservative justice is more or less likely to ask "what outcome do I want?" than a leftist judge!

This is exactly why the fight for judge appointments is becoming so nasty because individual justices are inserting their partisan politics into their decisions.

A not so classic case (in the sense it is still fairly fresh and recent in history) we can look at as an example of conservative judicial activism is the case of Justice Roy Moore. The details of the case are in this National Review Article and that article makes it quite plain Justice Moore's intentions were clearly unconstitutional and the placing of the Ten Commandment monument was his personal policy preference. Enter William Pryor.

William Pryor was Alabama's Attorney General and DESPITE his religious beliefs he worked to remove Justice Moore from the bench for violating the law in this matter! That is given Mr. Pryor's religious beliefs one may assume he would favor having a nice big Ten Commandments monument around, but this was not the case. Mr. Pryor recognized the law and higher courts dictated otherwise. That is to say he did not let his "personal policy preferences" dictate his actions in this matter; he followed the law! Whereas, Justice Moore was inserting his personal policy preferences into and over the law.

In fact, Mr. Pryor has resisted partisan pressure from people on his side of the aisle to make sure the statutes were enforced as written, not as he personally would have wanted to.

So judicial activism is to be resisted no matter whose activism it is. Judicial activism no matter who launches it is dangerous to our liberties. Why is it the left does not see this? Because it is the only way they can accomplish their policy goals, that is why.

It is a lot easier to convince a five judges than an entire legislative body answerable directly to their constituency. The left does not want to give up their grip on the judicial activists so they fight like mad for judges who will not only continue to rewrite law but rewrite law in their favor.

Justice Scalia and The Courts.

Justice Scalia's book is interesting.

I am not through it and not even through Justice Scalia's opening essay (the books consists of essays in response by other eminent legal scholars such as Lawrence Tribe) but one phrase sums up his belief in what is wrong with our judicial system.

According to Justice Scalia too many judges look at a case and then say
What is the most desirable resolution of this case, and how can any impediments to the achievement of that result be evaded?
see note #1

This is what Mark Levin refers to as judges foisting their "personal policy preferences" upon the public. In fact this is exactly what happened in the recent decision to prohibit the execution of those who committed their capital offense as a minor. The majority did not like the law as it stood ("most desirable resolution") and then went fishing not only in USA law and jurisprudence but also left our boundaries and went to international sources to support their claims.

The SCOTUS essentially told us many people in the states found capital punishment in these cases as being abhorrent, then why does the legislature not abolish them? Seems to me the people were okay with that situation and it was the SCOTUS who were not happy with those laws and decided to dig up any clam they could to justify what THEY wanted.

Justice Scalia laments the dearth of courses and texts (obviously this is law school stuff here) on the proper construction and interpretation of statutory law. Why? Too often he says judges and legislators do a poor job of writing and reading statutory law. He cites a case known as Holy Trinity vs. The United States (Wow! The US is not afraid to take on anyone!) about a case where a church in NYC hired a preacher from England in violation of a federal statute that barred making contracts or agreements of employment with aliens located outside of the USA.2 The circuit court for the Southern district of New York upheld the fine levied but the SCOTUS reversed the decision. The SCOTUS admitted
...although, within the letter, is not within the intention of the legislature, and therefore cannot be within the statute."
see note #3

That is to say the court admitted the fine was within the bounds of the law but decided the legislature really did not mean what it said. Note, this was not a question of constitutionality, just a matter of interpreting a law and the SCOTUS did not interpret, they rewrote and acted outside of their constitutional purview!

As I said I am in he middle of this read and I will keep you up to date on the book!

Please be patient with this blog, as it is likely to undergo formatting revisions after initial publication!


  1. (Page 13, A Matter of Interpretation - Federal Courts and the Law Antonin Scalia edited by Amy Gutmann published by Princeton University Press copyright 1997)

  2. (Pages 18-19, A Matter of Interpretation - Federal Courts and the Law Antonin Scalia edited by Amy Gutmann published by Princeton University Press copyright 1997)

  3. (Pages 20, A Matter of Interpretation - Federal Courts and the Law Antonin Scalia edited by Amy Gutmann published by Princeton University Press copyright 1997)


  1. 9:56 am April 23, 2005
  2. Changed "...the SCOTUS who were happy with those laws" to "the SCOTUS who were not happy with those laws".

The Sinners Are Not Happy With the New Pope.

The aptly named Sinner family is not happy with PBXVI.

HT: Mary Eileen at Stand in the Trenches.

My oh my. The attitude exemplified by the Sinners is the what the Church talks about people elevating themselves and their intellect to a position above that of God's. Unfortunately this is way too common. A month or so ago in our Diocesan newspaper The Compass some PESTy guy wrote in how he was leaving the church because it was too conservative for him. I know people who have left the church for being to leftist (same criticism goes to them as well).

This whole thing can be lumped in with people who attend or do not attend mass because of they like or do not like the priest. Remember people we don't go to Church to witness a stand up comedy routine we go to Church to give honor & glory to God and to fortify ourselves to resist evil and do good.

Car Killer!

Conservative Dialysis picks up on a story about a man arrested for shooting . . . his car! Read the story here. Money quote:
"I'm putting my car out of its misery," 64-year-old John McGivney said after the incident outside an apartment building in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, according to a police report that listed the car as "deceased."
Mr. McGivney should have said: I'm putting my car out of MY misery instead of "I'm putting my car out of its misery..."

I had a moment like this in my life. Not due to the car itself but the ignatzi in the Al-Ain traffic police department. I was leaving the UAE and was trying to sell my car. I had a buyer who was giving me my asking price, so I had some maintenance performed on it, but every time we would visit the traffic police to get the title transferred they could not (more like would) do anything because their computers were down. This happened a couple of times and the couple buying the car (friends of Claudia and mine) eventually gave up (they came like 3 times from Dubai to try to get this done), not only did I have to return the down payment but I was also out of the money spent on the maintenance! I was about to drive that car up to the top of Jebel Hafeet and roll it off the top of the mountain!

Fortunately a friend brainstormed and I managed to do a power of attorney to another friend who sold it for my minimum ask, which was 2/3rds of what the couple from Dubai was willing to pay.

APC's Gas Tax Editorial: A High Five!

For this editorial: State gas tax indexing just guarantees more spending!

Here is a taste of that editorial:
If you’re an average Wisconsin driver with an average vehicle, the state gas tax increase that went into effect April 1 has cost you about 28 cents so far.

Didn’t notice? That’s one of the great things about this tax. Since 1985, the year Wisconsin began “indexing” the tax for inflation, the automatic annual gas tax increase has generated a total of about $3.2 billion for state roads. This year, the tax went from 29.1 to 29.9 cents a gallon. It goes up magically every April 1, so legislators don’t have to vote on it, and so gradually that their phones don’t ring off the wall.

Plus, the tax goes into a special fund, guaranteeing money for highways. Lawmakers don’t have to worry about whether the money should go to roads or schools or health care for the poor. It’s out of your hands. That can be a great thing, if you’re a career legislator.
Source: Appleton Post Crescent Editorial - April 21, 2005

I like the title of the editorial, it says increased taxes are naturally going to find a way to be spent. It also says "Lawmakers don't have to worry about whether the money should go to roads or schools or health care for the poor." I think this is not quite true our government here in Wisconsin has been more than willing to raid designated funds for the general revenue pool of late. Governor McCallum raided the tobacco fund (Yeah! That was nothing but a judicial tax imposed by a so-called civil action, remember that the next time government proposes to sue someone to "recompensate" a class of victims) and Governor Doyle is raiding various segregated funds to an extent not seen since the days of the Vikings!

How do we fix this? We freeze the gas tax at its current level and then when government wants more road money it asks! People say we don't need a TABOR, there you go a great reason for TABOR!

Dave Hansen Not To Run For 8th District!

Dave Hansen (D-Green Bay) a state senator is reportedly not going to run for the potential opening of 8th district representative. At least according to WTAQ. Probably a wise move while he would likely poll well in Green Bay I doubt he would in Appleton and in the rest of the 8th district.

In a way this is too bad because he will continue to inflict him, his ideas, and his party's ideas on Green Bay and Wisconsin.

Sunshine in the Valley!

Good Morning!

Your nighttime is over! I have returned to the blog! You can now face the day with confidence! Hahahahahaha just kidding, night in my part of the world is indeed over but the rest of it?

Anyway I have nothing to put on the agenda but that does not mean no blogging all it means is free form blogging!

Have a good one!

Friday, April 22, 2005

The Last Bit.

Sad to say folks it is time for The Last Bit for April 22 2005.

A photo blog.
A red fox makes off with some fish entrails.
A Red Fox Makes Off With a Tasty Treat of Fish Entrails! © Marcus Aurelius.

I do not recall the year I snapped this photo (mid-90s). We knew this fox was bolder than most and we had left the pail of fish-guts around and set up my camera just for this shot. I managed to get two shots, the first one was the fox head down in the pail and this one of it fleeing. Too bad I did not have on my rapid fire, I could have had a pretty cool sequence of shots. I also have another picture of this fox (my very educated guess) fishing dead bait out of a bait bucket with a buddy six feet away on a boat.

We set up to lure the fox into the cabin and drop the shutter on it inside the cabin but thought better of that plan. What confusion that would have caused to have a blind and wild fox running around a cabin desperately trying to escape! Fortunately we thought of that before the fox took the bait!

BTW I have had a very good run with visitors the past day or two. Thanks, my weekly traffic does not always go up but in general it is trending upwards! Thanks to you, dear reader!

At the time of this writing I have served three cases and a six pack and three cans of Blogger Beer today, and on the week I have served 28 cases and 4 cans of Blogger Beer.

Good Night & God Bless You!

Here We Go Again!

You remember how a congressional delegation went to represent our nation (separate from President Bush's Presidential Delegation) at Pope John Paul II's funeral? Remember all the howling?

Well according to this story a congressional delegation is going to attend Pope Benedict XVI's (I am not getting used to that!) installation mass. 21 members, 11 Republicans and 10 Democrats all from the House. I would imagine the Freedom From Religion Foundation will be screaming bloody murder about that real soon in addition to groups interested in limiting "boondoggles".

Pope Benedict XVI (and indeed Pope John Paul II) is an important world leader. I thought it important we maintain cordial relations with other nations and pay our repsects?

I wonder if the Dems will inform Pope Benedict XVI they will filibuster any cardinal appointment deemed to be too conservative?

ROP Shows Itself Again!

The Religion of Peace (ROP) is now out to get a Swedish preacher, HT: LGF. According to this story in the Aftenposten (a Norwegian daily newspaper in English).

Pentecostal preacher Runar Søgaard is a 37 year old preacher who did say something that would obviously provoke of that there is no doubt. This statement leads to this comment:
"Even if I see Runar while he has major police protection I will shoot him to death," a radical Islamist told Swedish newspaper Expressen.
Source: Afterposten - Norwegian preacher kindles religious strife

Hmmm, what can one say? Obviously this fellow does not believe in counteracting Søgaard with their own speech and instead immediately goes to the bullet and knife, just the same thing situation we see in the Netherlands with Theo, Ayaan, Pim, and Geert. Unfortunately, it does not appear those in a real position to see what's going on see that instead this is offered up:
Islam expert Jan Hjärpe at the University of Lund told Expressen that such an assassination is a real risk, and he wondered if conflict was the motive for the sermon.

"It was a statement from an odd man in an odd sect but the effect is stronger antagonism between different groups. It becomes a pure religious polemic and is extremely unpleasant," Hjärpe told the newspaper.
Source: Afterposten - Norwegian preacher kindles religious strife

Perhaps Runar wanted to start something but how did he start it? Did he bomb a mosque? No quite the contrary he just said something. In the west it is believed we have the freedom, no the God given right to express our opinions and this is what Runar did. Those who threatened death of those who speak out in Sweden are the ones in violation here and are the ones to be castigated, not Runar.

New Wisconsin Blog Spotted!

The site Wigderson Library & Pub showed up on my referers list yesterday and I see I received another visit from The Wigderson Library & Pub today. I checked it out and yes a new Wisconsin based blog! Welcome and welcome to Blogger Beer's blogroll!

Jonah Goldberg's Column.

Can be found at:

Let Cookie Monster Be Cookie Monster

Social engineers go way too far.

Jonah has a knack of taking bits of seemingly silly pop culture and seeing the deeper meaning of those bits as they relate to our culture. He did this with a National Review cover story on the movie Groundhog Day a couple of months ago and does so again with The Cookie Monster.

His critique matches the general right-wing critique of multi-culturalism very well. Too often the diversity mongers view diversity in terms of shallow traits. The old saying of beauty is just skin deep comes to mind, in the case of most diversity mongers diversity is only skin deep. They will talk all day long how diversity makes us stronger but when it is suggested this diversity goes beyond skin color, accent, and preferred foods boy do they get worked up.

Anyway back to Goldberg. He starts off by referring to yours truly (well not really, I never wrote Meditations some guy with my name did! ;-) )
Since my copy of Meditations by Marcus Aurelius is in storage, let me explain by paraphrasing Hannibal Lecter's famous dialogue with Clarice Starling in Silence of the Lambs.
Source: National Review Online Jonah Goldberg - Let Cookie Monster Be Cookie Monster Social engineers go way too far.

His money quote is:
In fact, that's what makes this decision so hypocritical. Sesame Street normally drenches kids with "be true to yourself" pap and identity politics. In one episode, Elmo and Whoopi Goldberg (no relation) have a long talk about how they'd never want to give up, respectively, their skin or fur color because that would be changing who they are. Well, the hue of Elmo's fur is less essential to his identity than Cookie Monster's gluttony is to his. Rosita, the Hispanic Muppet, is often told not to be ashamed of her accent because that's just a part of who she is. Maybe they should ditch it, in the name of good diction. Heck, maybe the kids in wheelchairs should get up and walk next season because we're all in favor of kids being able to walk.
Source: National Review Online Jonah Goldberg - Let Cookie Monster Be Cookie Monster Social engineers go way too far.

That is true diversity is more than skin deep!

Helicopter Downing Part II.

Yesterday I commented on the left's reaction to the downing of the helicopter. A HT to Michelle Malkin for that one!

Early today I noticed that blog was picked up by The Jawa Report This report contains some rather graphic pictures and a story from the Houston Chronicle.

Essentially one man survived the crash. He was clearly unarmed and was telling his captors he thought his leg was broken. They then machine gunned the guy to death; the terrorists claiming they did this in return for the guy killed by the Marine in a Fallujah mosque. I wonder how many terrorists have been killed by people feigning injury begging for mercy and then blowing up when a terrorist tried to aid them. I have a fear the terrorists are winning in that game. Another aspect that they are winning is the PR war.

The film from that Mosque in Fallujah is an example of the PR nature, so too the Abu-Ghraib story. Our nation like any other person has some dirty laundry. Do we go publicly airing our dirty laundry constantly? I had this problem when I was younger I often confused honesty with gratuitous dirty laundry airing (Is there a word for that?) and that is the problem our MSM has. When the dirty laundry of a Marine killing a guy in a Mosque gets aired there are real consequences.

Why are they winning? Because the likes of Al-Pazeera (aka the Associated Press) are openly favoring and cooperating with the terrorists. Recently the terrorists are stepping up attacks and guess what? I bet pretty soon it will be Tet all over again.

The Germans Are PO'ed at the Brits.

Over the "Nazi Pope" slur.

There is a story at Yahoo News about this.

I wonder when this slur is going to go away? Everytime a German gets into a position of world authority up goes the hue and cry of "Nazi". I remember in High School we had a German exchange student for about the first semester of my senior year. He heard his share of comments about Nazis and Hitler.

In fact John Cleese does a sketch on this theme IIRC it is a Fawlty Towers episode where he gets all worked up with some German guests or perhaps it was a Monty Python skit.

Of course that hue and cry is all too evident here in the USA as well. I think in both cases it is more of anti-Catholic reaction than anything else. Remember the KKK hated three groups, non-Caucasians, Jews, and Catholics. Items one and two are now protected species but not item three.

The Badger Blog Alliance.

I have been proffered an invitation to join The Badger Blog Alliance. Over there I will contribute items from the Fox Valley. I will continue to blog here and will not simply copy a blog from one to the other.

All of my BBA blogs will be original as are my blogs here. Check out The Badger Blog Alliance Jib has a good thing going!

Sunshine In The Valley.

Good Morning,

It is Friday! The last day of the work week the start of weekend. I like Fridays as much as everyone else but I don't eternally pine for Friday. What a waste to wish it were Friday the whole week long and then it comes and the weekend goes. Why wish your life away?

It is going to be a free-blog Friday nothing to place on today's agenda.

Have a good one!

Thursday, April 21, 2005

The Last Bit.

The tugs I feel in my easy chair.
Each tug tries to draw me near.

The tugs too I feel in my work chair.
Again each try to draw me near.

One is the tug of easy street
wanting to turn me into wormy meat.

The other tug is of toil and sacrifice
with no promise of anything nice.

I choose the tug of toil and sacrifice
That I might guide others to God's promised light.

Good Night!

The Helicopter Downing.

Michelle Malkin blogs the shooting down of the helicopter in Iraq. She reports on a comment or to on the blog site of Markos Moulitsas Cunninglingas (whoops it is Zuniga).

Over at Little Green Footballs they refer to Kos as "Markos Screw Them..." over his comment on the murder and mutilation of the Blackwell contractors in Fallujah last spring.

THESE F[**]KERS ARE NOT NICE PEOPLE. I have a hard time feeling sorry for their families. I have known a few of these wives and if they are in the marriage they are so high on Prozac and Xanax they will barely know he's gone...If one of their mommas is crying I'm somewhat sorry but I really want to ask that woman why she never got any help for her son, who was obviously a potential serial killer! I lay some of what that man became on her and his father's doorstep. I have almost no tears for these people. I can barely squeeze one out.
Source: Michelle Malkin - LOOKING EVIL IN THE EYE

Six men from his own nation are murdered and all this person can do is basically say "good for them". Treasonous b.....d! Whoops only those who support American soldiers are allowed to be called treasonous nowadays.

Filibuster Busting Na Naman.

Na Naman is Tagalog for "again".

I read a set of articles today from Orin Hath and Norm Orenstein debating the filibuster quandary the Senate faces.

The two had different ideas on what to do and Norm had the better case. Norm argued to force the Democrats to conduct a real filibuster, to debate around the clock. Orin was arguing to change the rules.

Changing the rules is an option gone. It has a benefit of accomplishing an immediate goal but it cripples the GOP in the long run. The Democrats can paint the GOP as petulant children who change the rules when the rules do not allow for a desired outcome.

I do believe the best option would be to force a real filibuster. Make Robert Byrd talk for 20 hours, make Teddy Kennedy miss happy hour, make Barbara Boxer cry for 22 hours at a shot. It is going to be grueling but all the while they are talking about Jupiter and about Mary's Little Lamb things are not getting done.

Now as a conservative I generally like it when the Congress is wasting time as when they waste time they can not waste serious money but most people will not stand for this. They want the Senate working on real things and not reading Great Expectations. Eventually they will cave. What happened when Newt and his congress resisted Clinton's budget and Clinton forced a shutdown? Newt and GOP got the blame for not doing the people's work. Same thing here. A real filibuster is going to be BIG news and when the Senate can indeed muster 51+ votes this means those conducting the filibuster are going to be the ones to set off the public's alarm.

Secondly this leaves the filibuster open for the GOP when we are once again the minority party, surely we don't expect to be in the majority from now to the Apocalypse? The problem with the filibuster is it has become too convenient a weapon.

Come on Mr. Frist! Call the Democrats on their threats to filibuster and make them do it! They are on the verge of snatching victory from the jaws of defeat, don't play prevent!

The Left Side of Cafe Press Strikes Again!

The left side of Cafe Press strikes again. HT: Powerline Blog.

This one does not expressly call for violence but the taste on display is about what you would from the left.

It is a sad commentary these people are competitive politically speaking.


According to Michelle Malkin Sgt. Hassan Akbar was found guilty of his attacks on the his fellow soldiers right before the invasion of Iraq. He was up on two counts of first degree murder and three of attempted first degree murder.

I say he does the air dance. Dare I call him treasonous? Think the left will pile on me for saying that?

Michelle has sources that say he also knifed an MP while in the brig, though there is no confirmation of that story.


Another Schiavoing Prevented!

This time in Chicago-land.

See Catholics in the Public Square for more information!

The ACLU is up in Arms Over This Border Crossing!

Michelle Malkin takes note the ACLU and some Dem legislator from Arizona are up in arms over a uncontrolled border crossing. No, they are not concerned about illegal aliens entering the nation they are concerned about Sean Hannity sticking his toes on Mexican territory and then pulling them back.

Sean was on the scene with the Minutemen and was shown a border fence that had a hole in it. He went through the hole and returned. The man he was interviewing stated the fence did not actually demarcate the last bit of American soil but was three feet from the actual border that is Sean did not actually step on Mexican territory!

Here is what Michelle says:
Hannity stepped across a fence for a few seconds, and now the ACLU and a Democrat state legislator want him prosecuted. If Hannity were a citizen of any other country besides America, the ACLU would be rushing to represent him pro bono as a persecuted "undocumented migrant."

Surprised they would bother, it takes them away from this.

James Lileks States:

To those who want profound change, consider an outsider's perspective: the Catholic Church is the National Review of religion. You may live long enough to see it become the Weekly Standard. In your dreams it might become the New Republic. But it's never going to be the Nation. And if ever it does, it will have roughly the same subscriber base.

Yes, yes, easy for me to say, it's not my church. New age of oppression and intolerance, and all that. Write me when hot-eyed Jesuits walk into a mosque in Qom with ten pounds of Cemtex strapped to their chest. [emphasis added]
Source: Lileks(James)::The Bleat - Wednesday April 20, 2005

This is hilarious!

What did those wanting a "The Nation" pope expect? They didn't like PJPII and he had appointed all but 3 cardinals (of which two voted and one is now Pope Benedict XVI) and PJPII essentially did away with the 2/3rds rule (not entirely).

If you want a church that blesses gay-marriage, endorses abortion, has married priests, and woman priests go to another church. They do exist out there, in fact I recall a recent brouhaha where one church ordained an openly gay bishop.

Harry Reid Teacher of Lies.

According to The Beltway Buzz Harry Reid is on the senate floor calling filibuster busting unconstitutional!

Reid's History Lesson

Harry Reid is currently on the floor declaring an end to judicial filibusters unconstitutional. The same rule changes he is attacking are ones previously supported by Robert Byrd, Charles Schumer, Ken Salazar, Walter Mondale, George McGovern and other Senate Democrats.
Source: The Beltway Buzz - Reid's History Lesson

I have blogged on this before and Reid's statement is not true and he should know that given his position. The truth of the matter is the filibuster springs from senatorial rules not the constitution, the constitution says the senate and the house are responsible for making their own procedural rules. If they can make rules then they can change them.

My Current Read.

Active that is.

I am reading A Matter of Interpretation: Federal Courts and the Law by Antonin Scalia. He starts of by talking about common law. I have always heard about common law and had a general notion of what it is but this read so far has extended that knowledge.

This concept of common law is why the concept of court precedence is so important in our judicial system. This also is the focus of the current controversy on the courts.

More to follow!

Passed Over Papal Candidates.

Spotted in Jay Nordlinger's Impromptus column.
Just received this note from my friend Rahul - no, not Raúl (different name, different culture) - and must share it with you:


Saw this tidbit from Bill Simmons of and thought you would find it funny. He writes a Impromptus-esque column, covering all sorts of topics:

"We finally have a new Pope: Benedict XVI. Strange process. My buddy Gus kept waiting for the Vatican to announce that they were interviewing Chris Chambliss and Ray Sherman, just to fulfill the minority requirements."

To appreciate this fully, you have to be familiar with hiring practices - and rules - in professional sports. A year and a half ago, I wrote a piece on the subject, called "Color in Coaching."

Think I See the Point. Another Note About Cats.

Also spotted in the Press Gazette

Farrells’ cats are behaved and gentle

ASHWAUBENON — What’s all this flap I have been hearing about Farrells’ cats? Mr. and Mrs. Farrell have lived down the street from me for many years, and they are the best neighbors anyone could want. Their cats are well behaved and gentle. All the kids in the area just love them, especially the young gray one with the cute little black nose.

Now I hear that some hunters want the right to shoot them. What kind of barbarian would want to do that?

I told Mrs. Farrell that she could use one of my guns if anyone tries to shoot one of her cats.

Please join me by calling the DNR today and tell them to protect the Farrells’ cats.

Dr. Tom Tilkens

Dr. Tilkens, you don't know what you are talking about. I know you are being "tongue-in-cheek" here but feral cats are not at all people friendly, they are wild animals in every sense of the word. A couple around the farm are acceptable as the do keep rodents under control but too many are bad. They get disease ridden and do kill off the birds. I have seen it happen.

In any event this flap has been grossly misrepresented by the MSM. This is not a hunting season it is just lifting the protection from cats.

No Getting Over Unreasonable Doubt.

Spotted in the Green Bay Press Gazette:

Reasonable doubt exists for Maloney

GREEN BAY — The problem I have with this John Maloney conviction is that his conviction lacks proof. Proof must be beyond reasonable doubt. Reasonable doubt exists all over the case. This is a conviction based on belief rather than proof. Proof will probably never exist and the constitutional limitations of conviction have been violated.

John Maloney is entitled to file a writ of habeas corpus in federal court. The form necessary to bring his case to federal court is available from the clerk of the federal court.

Loren Longard

Really Loren? Were you on the jury that convicted Mr. Maloney? Were you part of the multiple proceedings that have looked into this afterwards? Have you seen all the evidence?

No, we call your doubt unreasonable doubt!


This is growing tiresome, isn't it?

What they hay is YALCFA, you say? Yet Another Leftist Call For Assassination. This time the crosshairs have shifted across the Atlantic, yes the left is now calling for the assassination of Pope Benedict XVI. Martin Pike a member of The Labour Party states thusly:
If he wasn't such a nasty little fascist then perhaps the hitler youth membership wouldn't seem so....flowing.

But seriously, no need to hold that against him. He's a c*nt and I hope he gets assasinated, [sic] and that's based on who he is now not who he was over half a century ago.
Source: Haloscan Comments.

Now, Mr. Pike later commented he regretted making those comments but the fact he offered that comment up in the first place tells much. I don't believe he regrets the comment I think he regrets the consequences of what he said. Go have a vegemite sandwich you murderous twit Martin Pike!