MY LATEST BLOG POSTINGS!

ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION UPDATE

4.30.2007


I didn't know SNL's Church Lady was an elected official in Utah. kutv.com - Utah Republican Blames 'The Devil' For Immigration.
“In order for Satan to establish his ‘New World Order’ and destroy the freedom of all people as predicted in the scriptures, he must first destroy the U.S.,” Larsen’s resolution states. “[It is] insidious for its stealth and innocuousness.”

I get a weird feeling that if we were being overtaken by Swedes, he would be thanking Jesus and not blaming Satan. And doesn't Lucifer sound much better than Satan. Satan is done to death. Lucifer has more of an edge to it.
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And another crime-related immigration find. This is why I think if they are properly trained and compensated, police can help the ICE effort. KVOA News 4, Tucson, Arizona - Kidnapping call reveals stash house
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More and more protests against the ICE raids. Federal raid triggers Chicago protest. ICE is like the Nazis? Not exactly. Personally, I feel we should be focusing 100% on securing the border and going after those who support the illegal immigration industry from the sex trade to construction companies. After that, you figure out what to do with the illegals we have here. It's going to take more soul searching than a lot of people thinking. We are a country of laws, but we are also Americans and our decision has to be one we can all be proud of when we look in the mirror.
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ODDS & ENDS



This is a no brainer. iPods Banned by Schools in an Attempt to Stop Exam Cheating - Gizmodo. These kids have some nerves. I'm a grown woman and I would be way too scared to do something like this. Especially if they told my parents.
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Yet more proof to my belief that this iPod attachable craze is going to be the downfall of mankind. iGrill, The iPod-Ready George Foreman Grill - Gizmodo. Why? Just why?
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Foolishness! New Noah's Ark ready to sail - CNN.com. My opinion is that I don't completely believe the Noah's Ark story. I think it's one of those embellished stories to prove a point about unquestioning faith in God. That being said, I would definitely go see this if I was in the Netherlands. "Life-size models of giraffes, elephants, lions crocodiles, zebras, bison and other animals greet visitors as they arrive in the main hold." The story has video to go along with the article. I'm eager to see what people do if they ever get a really bad thunderstorm with flooding rains.
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More regional abortion regulation. In FL, the House has passed a bill making any woman wait 24 hours before going through with an abortion. Is this 24 hours after she arrives at the clinic or 24 hours after she shows up at the clinic and they send her away? Because if it's just 24 hours, all she'd have to do is show up and say she made this decision 24 hours ago. House OKs bill requiring waiting time, ultrasound before abortions - Gainesville.com The wait doesn't bother me. The ultrasound of the fetus rubs me the wrong way. As much as I would love it if this saved just a few babies, the law forbids an "undue burden" and I think many would see this part as falling into that category.
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JAPANESE REPARATIONS DENIED

JAPAN
This is totally wrong. Japan Court Rules Against Sex Slaves and Laborers - New York Times. If they were going to do this, they shouldn't have even started this whole thing. These women were taken from their free lives and made to be slaves, sanctioned by the Government. What better case for reparations do you know of?
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BLACK COFFEE & OBAMA


Black Coffee says that IL Senator Barack Obama is a danger to others and himself. Not because of a drinking problem, but because his game is just too good. Black Coffee Channel - The Audacity Of Nope. Brother Barack, The Acceptable Entertainer... and America's New Fireman. "This is the great danger that Barack Obama poses to White and Black America, but more importantly, to himself. He's bigger than the game, and like any great prizefighter, talented basketball player, or, even innovative street entrepreneur or Wall St. financier who is 'bigger than the game,' Mr. Obama has to 'dumb down' and hide his power, and will either get bored, too cute, or dangerously proud."
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PAYING FOR A 5-STAR JAIL CELL


If you have money, you can buy a better defense. But even if that doesn't work for you, you can buy a favorable sentencing that keeps you from spending a day in jail. And if that doesn't work, because you're probably totally guilty, your money can buy you a better cell in prison. For $82 a Day, Booking a Cell in a 5-Star Jail - New York Times. I was about to be mad until I saw this cell. If this is better then...damn.
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RACE BIAS IN NEW ORLEANS HOUSING


I'm not surprised to read this. Despite all the new construction in New Orleans, many black residents who are trying to come back and rebuild their lives are having a hard time finding a spot in one of those new homes. Survey finds New Orleans race bias - Race & Ethnicity - MSNBC.com. I will say that there are a lot of black people who will say they weren't treated well because of their race no matter how they are actually treated. They come in with the assumption that all whites are racist. That being said, I still believe they are being discriminated against.
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D.C. HAPPENINGS


Mayor Adrian Fenty is getting into the tax those horrible suburban people discussion. They want to charge Marylanders and Virginians who drive into the city for work, but live and spend in the suburbs. I'm not sure who those people are. Most people I know that work in the city spend a ton of money on breakfast, lunch, dinner and after work Happy Hour. For that matter, so do people who work in the suburbs. I'm a HUGE "not my taxes" kind of girl, but if you've ever tried to get anywhere in D.C., which I have to almost every day, you'd understanding the exception. There are some Commerce Clause issues here that D.C. will have to handle, but it could happen. However, I will not pay ONE RED CENT until he does something about these streets! Fenty Explores D.C. Congestion Tax - News Story - WRC Washington
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TMZ is having a hard time getting the salacious gossip in D.C. Hello! D.C. Madame! That's TMZ material even people outside of the District want to know about. TMZDC, Late For Launch In Washington - washingtonpost.com. They'll be fine. They just need the right Hill Staffers to pay for info. They'll tell you everything. Although it won't be interesting to anyone who doesn't work on The Hill. They can always steal stuff from Wonkette.
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BROTHER STEPS IN FOR DRUNK GROOM


Wow, this is family commitment. I guess that woman was like, "I'm getting married today and I don't care who it is! Nothing is going to ruin MY DAY!"Drunk groom's brother takes his place - Peculiar Postings - MSNBC.com.

I know what you're thinking. I want to see pictures too. You never know, she might have gotten the better deal. He's at least more responsible than the loser she was supposed to marry.
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DANGER FOR FEMALE BLOGGERS


WAPO has a great story on how female bloggers are being threatened with rape and murder as well as stalked by readers/visitors because they are voicing their opinions on popular blogs. Sexual Threats Stifle Some Female Bloggers - washingtonpost.com. We always like to say we are so advanced when it comes to sex, but in reality, there are millions of people in this country who think we should shut up and not speak until spoken to.
Men are harassed too, but not in the same numbers and not in a sexual way. The sexist psychos will argue with the male bloggers, but they'll threaten females. The worse anyone has done to me is call me an idiot, which personally I find a compliment. It means I've made a good point. You notice that whenever you blog or even in the comments of blogs, when people stop arguing the point and start calling you names, that's their way of saying I don't have a good enough argument anymore, but if I call you names then what you say is automatically invalid. Genius move if you fall for it.

I've had more hate mail from people who read my books and those go straight to the publisher's lawyers who handle it and surprise, I never hear from them again. This is a serious problem that the blogging industry needs to organize on and get the cyber-cops involved. Women, we can't let them silence us.
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HILLARY POST


The latest on Hillary

She drops her hyphenated name again. Hillary drops her maiden name - World - BrisbaneTimes - brisbanetimes.com.au.

Someone else is calling her a liar. Watergate reporter demolishes Hillary’s career story-News-World-US & Americas-TimesOnline

The WAPO goes behind the scenes of her campaign to see how they plan to prevent making her the next Al Gore or John Kerry. Clinton's PowerPointer - washingtonpost.com


The Chicago Sun Times is waxing poetic about Hill's early years in my home town of Chicago. Clinton draws on Park Ridge lesson :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES. Oh Chicago, how I miss you. I think it's time to reorder some Lou Malnati's for dry freezing Fed Ex lovin'.




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MORE DEAD SOLDIERS IN IRAQ


The U.S. death toll in April passed 100. We're at 104 on the last day of the month after 5 soldiers were killed this past weekend. This is the most since December '06 when 112 died and I think 104 died last October as well. That brings it to 3351 American deaths since this "slam dunk" began.
So what does the president mean when he says progress? If more soldiers are dying and plenty more Iraqis are dying, where is the progress? Building schools? It's great that Iraqi kids have schools to go to, but is it worth the lives of American soldiers? Progress can't be a feeling you get, an idea you believe in or something you know when you see it when it involves lives. It has to be something measurable that you can work towards and focus on. So again, what is his definition of progress? And don't pick on me. With a 28% approval rate, the majority of Americans are asking the same question.

No, we can't just walk away, I know that. But we can't just accept that and keep on going. The president plans to wait until the Fall to see if the surge is working. Even if it isn't, is he going to change anything? Or is he just going to find a different definition for "working?"
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HOW OBAMA FOUND JESUS...WHAT, YOU MEAN HE ISN'T JESUS?



Somebody in the PR arm of IL Senator Barack Obama's campaign has an "in" with the NYTimes. Here's a nice story about his conversion to Christianity and involvement in his church and faith, which I'm sure includes a lot of stuff that isn't anyone's business. A Candidate, His Minister and the Search for Faith - New York Times. How much do you want to bet this story won't make it on FOXNews? It happens to fit in nicely with his recent visit to an AME church in Selma, AL. What a wonderful coincidence for him. You know Hillary is demanding someone do a story on how she was in the choir at some church in Arkansas for a whole year.
All in all, it's a flattering story that will again divert people from his "he's too liberal" badge and focus them on his "what a decent guy" badge. I was a little disappointed in the article, because when I saw the words Obama & Christ, I thought this article was announcing that all those press people and Dems who worship him have decided to officially start calling him Jesus Jr or something. They might wait until the primaries for that.
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NAMING NAMES PART II


This will be the second in a series of posts about the D.C. Madame that I will write about until...well, until so goes missing or something. It looks like ABC is getting the scoop and will reveal some of the 10,000 names of her clients during May sweeps month. If some of her "high end customers" would've just given her some money for her defense, they wouldn't have to be crying and praying to God to she spares them. 'I Abhor Injustice,' Alleged Madam Says - washingtonpost.com

Last blog, I posted about the first victim, a nobody in government. Friday, we got some red meat. The Dpty Secretary of State resigned after ABC contacted him, in preparation for the story, about his relationship with the "escort" service. And this guy was a leading proponent of the abstinence until marriage campaign. Well, in his defense the campaign is "until" marriage. It doesn't say anything about after. Rather than put his family through a mess, Randall Tobias resigned. Now if everyone who gets a call from ABC resigns, we'll have to hold new elections and fill positions throughout the legislative, executive and judicial branch.
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MOST OBVIOUS STORY OF THE WEEK


Study: Minorities fare worse in traffic stops - CNN.com
And in other news, the sky is blue and eating vegetables is healthy for you. When did CNN turn into Jet Magazine? And don't get mad at me. You know that Jet is notorious for articles that state the obvious, are three weeks behind the news and fill the first two pages with retractions from how they made mistakes stating the obvious in the last issue.
I live in D.C. which is full of black folks and every time someone passes by me like a bat out of hell its a white dude. I'm not making a judgment. I'm just saying.
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POSTING PLANS

4.27.2007


Law School exams are around the corner, so you'll be hearing from me a lot less. I won't stay away completely, but I probably won't be back at full steam for another two weeks or so.
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LOCAL NEWS UPDATE


Chicago, IL
Looks like my hometown is getting back in the tallest building in the country game again. America's tallest tower to lift the Windy City - Independent Online Edition. All I know is that for the 2 years I worked in Sears Tower, it took me about 15 minutes to ride the elevator up to my floor. I had to switch elevators twice each way. I can definitely do without it. The 2,000ft tower featuring 1,200 residences, would top the city's 1,451ft Sears Tower and become the tallest building in the US. It would soar above the 1,776ft Freedom Tower that is currently being constructed on the site of the World Trade Centre, which was destroyed in the September 11 attacks.
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San Bernardino, CA
Score one for technology in the fight against crime. San Bernardino has decided to GPS gang members. California county tags gang members with GPS. It is estimated that San Bernardino County is home to nearly 300 gangs and around 13,000 gang members. Ouch. I'm sure the ACLU and other groups are preparing the deposition for court right now. Can you tag someone after they have been paroled? This is when they want to do it. They aren't tagging all 13,000 but only those who are paroled on gang-related crimes. While they are on parole, I see no problem with it, but they'd have to take it off once their sentence has been served and they haven't committed any crimes. Victorville Daily Press : County seeks gang GPS pilot program
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Honolulu, HI
Have you heard about the rich guy who is giving away some of his mansions to poor & homeless people in Honolulu? Giveaway in Honolulu Raises Eyebrows as It Lifts Spirits - New York Times. The man, Genshiro Kawamoto, is called the Japanese Donald Trump and planned to give up 8 of the properties he owns. Haters are not happy with this. The trouble is that his past business practices have made many suspicious. As Lee Cataluna, a columnist for The Honolulu Advertiser, put it: “He doesn’t have a track record of generosity or compassion. Just what is he up to?”
Who knows? Maybe he wants good PR. Maybe he just wants to be nice to make up for being a jerk for so long. I think the only thing I would have an issue is whether he is giving the house away or just letting them live there. If he's just letting them live there, then they should be cautious. What Mr. Kawamoto does have is a reputation for capricious adventures in real estate in Hawaii and California. He is known for buying houses on a whim, failing to maintain them and serving eviction notices to entire communities on short notice.
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CALIFORNIA by way of MEMPHIS
FedEx quietly settled a racial bias suit a couple of weeks ago. I'd never heard about it and I crawl for discrimination suits pretty regularly. FedEx to pay $53.5 mln to settle racial bias suit - Yahoo! News. Fed Ex is based in Memphis, the article is from Chicago and the jurisdiction for the case is in California, so I'm not sure where this actually happened, but I'm assuming Cali.
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Hartford, CT
Since there is some square feet still left on the Mall in D.C., why not build another monument? Originating in Connecticut, there is legislation to build a monument recognizing the contribution of blacks to the Revolutionary War. You mean there was more than Crispus Atticus? courant.com | Monument To Blacks Has Backing In Congress. I hope they build it.
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Indiana
Indiana, as a state, has quite a reputation within the Midwest. It's history on race relations is not a good one. So I wasn't too surprised to hear that the current Republican Secretary of State used a slave reference to question the fact that blacks vote 90% for Democrats during a recent speech at the annual Lincoln Day Dinner at that. Oh the irony. "How can that be?" Rokita said. "90 to 10. Who's the master and who's the slave in that relationship? How can that be healthy?" If you get past his race, what is wrong with the statement? I've asked the same thing myself. Okay, so the guy is white, Republican and he said this on a black radio station. Let the endless apologies begin.
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Texas
A mostly white Texas jury recently awarded a black man $9 million in a lawsuit filed against four white men who beat him up. Never thought you'd read that sentence, huh? Texas jury awards $9 million to beating victim - CNN.com. These guys beat up the victim and dumped him in a field, leaving him brain damaged. None of them served more than 60 days in jail. Yeah, that sentence sounds more familiar. Authorities in this poor, pine-locked east Texas hamlet had said that Johnson, well-known around town as a friendly but "slow" character, was lured to an all-white pasture party where underage drinkers fed him alcohol and picked on him. It's a really sick thing.
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DEBATE


I guess since the Dems are the ones pushing this global warming thing, it's only fair they get called on it. Newsday exposes how they all used private jets to get to last nights debate in South Carolina. This story is probably pointless, but they could have at least jet pooled. Newsday.com: 2008 Candidates Rely on Private Jets

On Hillary, I give her a hard time because she keeps doing her black southern dialect when she talks to black crowds. It ticks me off. However, she did a very good job last night. I watched about 20 minutes total, but after watching clips on various news shows this morning, most people said she was the winner.

I have to agree with Joe Scarborough, who reminded everyone of how strong a woman Hillary is. She has been in politics for most of her life. She has dealt with that pressure and responsibility. She had to go on national television and not freak out when people talk about her husband cheating on her. While most women/men can deal with their cheating spouses in private, she has had to deal with hers with the entire world watching and judging. She has lived through being hated and vilified since coming into the White House. She has to hear and read comments about her appearance that none of the male candidates do. She's been called a killer, a criminal, a lesbian and worse. Still, she continues to win and push. That is perseverance whether you like her or not. She is determined and last night showed that she can handle herself in a room full of men despite knowing that millions (including some of the men on that stage) think she doesn't belong there just because she doesn't have a penis.

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LAYING BLAME IN THE IMUS GAME


It's something like poison to bring up this Imus thing again, but I'm doing it anyway. Imus producer criticizes Rev. Sharpton - Yahoo! News. I still don't think Imus is a racist. I think he's prejudiced like most people are and he allowed that prejudice to cloud his judgment. In general, this country was ready for a race war and the people who profit from it were waiting for someone to open the door. Imus did that.

But back to the point, I do think that Imus' producer, Bernard McGuirk, might be racist. Why do I think that? Every time I've listened to the show, he has found a way to inject race into it. He particular likes to express his anger when a topic revolves around black men/white women. That really bothers him. He also likes to do impressions of black people in "ghetto" voice regardless of whether it applies or not. One example is Condi Rice. When he imitates her, he uses the "ghetto" voice even though everyone knows she doesn't sound like that. Whatever. Condi is probably one of the most powerful people in the world, so there's no harm he could do.

I say all this because, after staying silent during this whole flap, McGuirk finally speaks up and decides that Sharpton is what he wants to talk about. I assumed that McGuirk stayed quiet because of guilt. He is the one who usually initiates the racial conversations and he was the one who made the "hard-core hos" comment that spurred on Imus. Regardless, Imus is the man, so he has to take the blame.

McGuirk goes on Hannity & Colmes, knowing he'd find a friend in Hannity, to say although an apology was in order, this was really about Sharpton and not Imus or him. "It seemed like he terrorized broadcast executives," he said. "It seemed like they were in a fetal position under their desks sucking their thumbs on their Blackberrys, trying to coordinate their response."

That is pretty much true, but although its right for him to accept his part of the blame, he can't place all the rest on Sharpton. Those broadcast executives and advertisers gave into their own fear and allow men like Sharpton & Jackson to make them feel unless they jump on the "no tolerance" bandwagon, they will suffer their bottom line. By buying into the fact that Sharpton still speaks for blacks, they made it the truth. This is not to express some defense of the show and the behavior of those on it, but this thing stopped being about Imus the second Sharpton got involved.

Also, whenever I hear the name McGuirk, I think of the soccer coach on the HOME MOVIES cartoon. Awesome cartoon I got hooked on through CN Adult Swim. If you haven't seen it, rent it.
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WHAT DOES YOUR ROBOT LOOK LIKE?


Daily Mail is probably my favorite newspaper because who else will talk about cats having half-dog/half-cat babies, sheep cloned with human DNA and a robot revolution. What would happen if the robots turned against us? the Daily Mail. I thought this was a promo for the upcoming Transformers movie (which I am very ashamed to say I want to see), but it's not. This is much, much better. This dude made a robot of himself that looks like a twin. Actually I suspect it is his twin and they're just saying its a robot, but either way, it's pretty awesome.
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GENERAL '08 POST

4.26.2007

The Concord Monitor is chasing behind the candidates to find out how their campaign millions are being spent. Rooms, salaries - and Pez? - A Concord Monitor Article - Your News Source - Concord NH 03301. They all curse John Edwards and his $400 haircuts. He's made it worse on all of them. The paper reports that little known Democratic candidate, Senator Chris Dodd from CT spent $1535 on Pez Dispensers. I'd believe that, if by pez dispensers, you meant hookers or meth. Otherwise, don't tell me anyone spent that much on some stupid pez dispensers. I may be an idiot, but I'm not a fool.
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The NYTimes chronicles the books written by all of the Presidential candidates. And if you're running for President and don't have a book, just drop out now because you will look like a total loser in the debates when the other candidates talk about their national bestselling scribes. Even Fred Thompson has a book. Books by Presidential Contenders - New York Times. Hands down, Dreams of my Father, by Barry is the best. And I say that not having read any of the other books. What? I bought Hill's book and stood in line for an hour to have her sign it, but it's been collecting dust on the shelf next to her husband's 5,235 page book, which I stood in line for 2 hours to have him sign. That book is too long to read. I am waiting for the cliff-notes.
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The Hill covers all the donations given to the candidates by the lobbyists that they all say they want nothing to do with and want to ban from the Hill once they are elected. TheHill.com - Veiled lobbyists give $700,000. The key is for the lobbyists to donate to the campaign under the name of some charity like The Starving War Orphans so no one will question them.

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The one thing almost all of the Democratic candidates agree on is a weak stance on immigration. They're all pretty pitiful about it, but at least they're pitifully on the same page. So who gets the I'm-weak-on-illegal-immigration vote? They split it. United on immigration, Democrats divide voters - Nation/Politics - The Washington Times
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GORE POST


So people are beginning to talk about Al Gore again. Why not? He'll just be the 141st person to enter the race for Prez 08. Right now, Barack Obama has a third of my vote, Fred Thompson has a 1/3 and Jack Bauer has a 1/3. Gore is not on my list. Honestly, could he stand to lose? I mean even when he won, he lost.

The Times seems to think that NY Mayor Bloomberg wants to back Gore if he decides to run. NYTimes: Bloomberg for Gore?

Bill Clinton, in the news again. He is trying to help his wife, but he's going to end up overshadowing her. That's what Bill does. He sucks up all the attention and its not on purpose. He just has it like that. So now, he's suggesting that Gore could enter the 08 Race. Bill Clinton Says Gore Could Enter '08 Race - New York Sun Politics Blog. You know Gore is reading this saying, "Bill, keep my name out of your mouth." They don't get along.

PALS PENCIL IN GORE FOR PREZ RUN - New York Post Online Edition. Yes, but if they encourage him to get in the race, are they really his friends?

Can't you just see the commercials of Gore in the hot tub scene with Faux Liberman from the SNL skit playing over and over again in the Bible Belt? We'd see that just as much as we'd see commercials with Rudy in drag. It's going to be ugly folks.
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ALL THE BLAH BLAH BLAH ABOUT DEBATE


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24 POST


I am aware that this season of 24 is not up to par. However, I'm sick of reading articles about how the show stinks. A show can't be perfect every season. There are only so many ways a completely psychotic hero can save the world. The writers just had a little writer's block. I'm sure Jack will be back for Day 7 as crazy as ever. TheStar.com - Breaking up is hard to do, especially with Jack



Here's a funny article about people with clearly too much time on their hands making a video for Jack Bauer for President 2008. Jack Bauer, Dammit!
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GETTING RID OF PERIODS COMPLETELY


There is a new pill that promises to eliminate your period all together. Pill That Eliminates the Period Gets Mixed Reviews - New York Times. When women hear that it is possible to not have their period at all, they want to hope and believe. But is it safe? Don't get me wrong. I believe in family planning and birth control. I just don't think it's a good idea to not have a period at all. We're already testing nature with the regular birth control pill in itself.

Last year, my sister switched to those pills that allow you to only have your period once every 4 months. Her hair started falling out, she gained 10 lbs and she was still spotting anyway. She got off of it quick and is now normal again. I always recommend anyone who has a bad time with their period should get on at least a low dose pill (low dose is better if you're not sexually active and don't need birth control). It will control PMS symptoms, flow and duration. My doctor prescribed it for me when I was diagnosed with endometriosis. Endo is like have cramps all the time. The pain I was experiencing almost completely gone. But as much as I hate that time of the month, it is part of being a woman, a healthy woman. It's part of the blessing that is the ability to grow and sustain life (if you're into that sort of thing). I wouldn't want it to go away completely.


Speaking of uteruses, Wonkette has a humorous and completely inappropriate take on the SCOTUS decision to strike down partial birth abortions. SCOTUS Declares Your Uterus Unconstitutional - Wonkette. They are so offensive and I love them for it. Personally, I'm very torn. I hate abortion, especially after viability. However, I hate the government intruding in people's privacy and their bodies. I'm biased by personal experience. We were faced with someone in our family wanting an abortion and we talked her out of it. That child is a part of the joy of all our worlds now and had a right to be here. Our family would have been incomplete without the little brat.
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GUNS & RESPONSIBILITY

This was a pretty poignant cartoon following the VATech tragedy. It says a lot. That killer's mental status should have prevented him from buying guns.
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IRAQ UPDATE


I barely never blog about Iraq. Most of what I read about it is from the NYTimes, which is totally biased against the administration. But the writing is good.


'Gated Communities' For the War-Ravaged - washingtonpost.com. Not sure this is such a good idea. I know that the two groups of people in Iraq are nuts and always trying to kill each other, but the gated community plan just sounds very colonist/occupation. The U.S. military is walling off at least 10 of Baghdad's most violent neighborhoods and using biometric technology to track some of their residents, creating what officers call "gated communities" in an attempt to carve out oases of safety in this war-ravaged city. I'm not saying it shouldn't be done, but not by the U.S. It looks like we are boxing human beings in pins so we can track them like cattle.
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The NYTimes talks about the toll that this war is taking on Iraqis, aside from all the blowing up of people. For example, 2 out of 3 Iraqis have no regular access to clean water which is leading to malnourished children who die from preventable diseases. Iraq’s Desperate Exodus - New York Times. "And an incredible total of four million people — one out of every seven Iraqis — have been forced to flee their homes. If Iraq continues this descent, the refugee tide could turn into a regional tsunami, with potentially convulsive political consequences."
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BILL GATES CAN'T GET RID OF HIS MONEY FAST ENOUGH


These Billionaires just think they are so much better than us. Just throwing their money around to every cause on the planet. That Bill Gates and someone I've never heard of, Eli Broad, have contributed more than $2billion into America's education system. If that wasn't enough, they are trying to show us poor folks up again by committing another $60 million to ensure that education becomes a top priority in the 2008 campaigns. Billionaires Start $60 Million Schools Effort - New York Times. I guess that's fine. If that's what you want to do with your money.
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LOBBYISTS ARE STILL GOING STRONG


Didn't we think that the lobbying industry would take a blow that it couldn't recover from after Jack Abramoff went to jail? Didn't the Democrats say they were going to put an end to lobbyist influence on The Hill? Not only have many of the lobbying firms changed up their staff to meet the swing leftward in Congress, but more firms than ever are registering. Lobbyists Profit From Power Shift In Congress - washingtonpost.com In the four months since the midterm elections, the number of new lobbyist registrations has nearly doubled to 2,232 from 1,222 in the comparable period a year earlier. As much as people like to hate lobbyists, the fact is that we have a right to air grievances with the legislature. That is part of the Constitution.
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BET'S NEW LINEUP


BET has come out with a new lineup. At least it means less soft porn videos. Variety.com - BET unveils massive lineup. Here are the ones I think will be interesting:

Hannibal," the previously announced series exec produced by Diesel, is an animated half-hour about the life and times of the ancient African king.

From Will Smith's Overlook Entertainment comes "Cipha," an animated sci-fi series "set in a future world where hip-hop is outlawed ... to shut down the voices of youth," according to BET.

The most ambitious reality series on BET's schedule, "Baldwin Hills," focuses on the lives of 11 upper-middle-class black teens in suburban L.A. whose parents are professional athletes, TV personalities, doctors, lawyers and engineers.

I might have to call my lawyer about this last one. They better not bite on my book series, VIEW PARK, which is right next door to Baldwin Hills.
EURweb.com - BET EXPLODES WITH NEW PROGRAMMING.
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ENTERTAINMENT POST



I love B. Smith. I think they moved her show on TVOne because I can't find it anymore. She has very good taste. Sometimes she gets a little too busy with the colors, but most of the time, her selections are great. Now she has a furniture line and I'm sure it's good too. B. Smith debuts furniture line - Inquirer. The article is interesting. She's had to deal with so much crap that a Martha Stewart never would. I'll be dining at her restaurant in New York in a couple of weeks. The B.Smith at Union Station here always shakes when the trains come in.
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How many of these stupid Grand Theft Autos do we need? Do you still get bonus points for running over hookers? I only want more City Building games. Games Radar - Grand Theft Auto IV .
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The Hispanics v. Ken Burns saga continues. First they were mad that he left them out of his WWII documentary. In 14.5 hours, you'd think he could fit a Mexican or two in there. So after Hispanic groups make a fuss, Burns agrees to add their contribution at the beginning and end of clips and during breaks. Again, I don't understand how you can show some content during breaks because it is a break, but that's not the point. Hispanic groups weren't satisfied. So Burns said eat it and he's not going to even do the charity clips he had planned. Burns Won't Reedit 'War,' PBS Clarifies - washingtonpost.com
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Okay, I love Stephen Colbert too, but some of his fans are a little nuts. Google Declares Stephen Colbert As Greatest Living American. He says one word and thousands of people are voting to name a bridge in a foreign country after him, placing false info in Wikipedia and now bombing Google so that his name comes up first when anyone rights "Great Living American."
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This was only during the VATech tragedy, but Keith Olbermann beat Bill O'Reilly in the ratings for once. You know Keith is having those Nielsen ratings framed and mounted. Bill O'Reilly Drops to Third / Jossip
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Film Critic list The Top 50 Movie Endings of All Time. This is probably obvious, but just in case you're not too bright, SPOILER ALERT. So you've been warned. I've never seen Dr. Strangelove, but it sounded like the title of a James Bond flick and I was about to go off because there is no James Bond ending that deserves to be on this list, but I was wrong. The Usual Suspects got jipped! It should be in the top 10 at least. Dead Again should be a little higher too. No black movies are on the list.
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What if Harry Potter was black? Okay, keep the racist jokes to yourself. I'm only asking because Tiny Treasury is someone's attempt to create a franchise out of the trillion dollar fantasy kid market. Are there any black kids in the Harry Potter series? I saw the first one a couple of years ago, but that kid that plays Harry barely talks above a whisper and I ended up hating him for it. I wonder if this book is 15,000 pages as well. Tiny Treasury - What if Harry Potter was a black kid?
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PEOPLE WHO LOOK BETTER THAN YOU

4.25.2007

People Magazine came out with it's Most Beautiful People issue, causing millions of women to down an entire pint of Haagen Dasz Chocolate Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.
Black(ish) people who made the various lists:



16 Most Beautiful: Halle Berry, Kerry Washington, Wenworth Miller(super hot)

Beautiful At Any Age: 25 - Beyonce Knowles, 38-Mariah Carey, 51-Iman

Beautiful Without Makeup: Rihanna, Rashida Jones(love her!)

All-Time Beautiful: Halle Berry














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HILLARY POST


So she actually did finally get to Rutgers last week. She cancelled because of weather, but some media outlets suggested it was because she didn't want to deal with the inevitable questions about Don Imus & the basketball team. After VATech, that all seems so trivial now. Well, it kind of seemed trivial then, but Clinton will not answer questions she doesn't want to. 6abc.com: Hillary Clinton to Appear at Rutgers
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The gossip section of the NYDaily News quotes Bill as saying he doesn't agree with Hillary on all her political opinions, probably in response to those who think electing her means re-electing him. The title of the article says, Bill: I'm not wedded to all of Hil's opinions. There are so many ways I could respond to that title, but I will not take the Daily's bait. Also, Hill's glasses in this photo are hot. I wish I could find out whose they were.
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How does Bill keep slipping into these posts about Hillary? Even her own post isn't all about her. Bloomberg politics says that Clinton has upped his college speaking schedule to help get the college vote for Hillary. Bloomberg.com: Clinton Triples College Speaking Pace as Hillary Runs. I would love for him to be the commencement speaker when I graduate from law school 11 years from now. This was his greatest talent. He's an awesome speaker. Also, how much does he charge universities? Does he do it for free or do they get a discount? He charges everyone else $5 mill per speech, so he can afford a couple of pro-bono gigs. This is update 1. Does that mean they plan on an update 2? How much more can you say about this?
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More voices joining the chorus for Hill, and other candidates, to give back all the campaign money given to her by anyone associated with hip hop. It's supposed to be somewhere near $800K. I'm surprised she even has any. Colbert I. King - From Clinton, Hip-Hop Hypocrisy - washingtonpost.com. She can do whatever she wants with it. The only candidate that would make a statement by returning the money would be Obama. I've noticed from sitemeter that a ton of people are copping my pic of Obama & Ludacris from last year where they spoke at an event together and they're hanging out like buds. Although Luda seems like a likeable person and is a pretty good actor, his lyrics uncensored are pretty rough. I'm sorry, did I make this post not about Hillary too? I can't help myself.
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Hillary's donors don't have any more money. At least that's what they tell her when she calls asking for a buck or two. In reality, I suspect the money is going somewhere else. But I aint one to gossip so you didn't hear it for me. Hillary donors maxed out? - Commentary - The Washington Times, America's Newspaper

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So now her popularity ratings are in the tank. Why? I think it's just popular to hate her and love Barry right now. But these things shift and change. Between now and November 08, this will likely shift and I'll bet that after some of the primaries Edwards is going to steal that top spot for a while. HILLARY'S POPULARITY RATINGS GO NEGATIVE - New York Post Online Edition
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Ever since 1992, I hear about this guy named Harold Ickes. I don't know who he is. I know he's connected to the Clintons and he is some super genius at something. Then he suddenly disappeared and I missed him. Not really, but I still didn't know who he was. Well, he's back and now he's joining Hillary's campaign and this will somehow do wonders for her. Hillary's Hammer Returns - Politico.com
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If this....woman does not stop trying to act like she's down, I will go to NY and have a talk with her myself. Yet another display by Hills as she tries to speak to the "black heart" with a Southern/Black/Sermon accent that we all know she doesn't have. I'll fight like Harriet Tubman, Hil tells her young backers - NY Daily News. Some advice. Stay away from the underground railroad references and stick with what you know. Young black people want to know what you plan to do about their taxes, education, health care and stuff like that.
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So Hillary Clinton used the term "partial birth abortion" in a recent speech and now pro-choice people are upset with her. They said she should have used the term "late-term abortion." They don't want anything said that might make people think its an actual baby. Better yet, why doesn't she just call it a "medical procedure," to completely ignore the other side. Political Radar: Clinton's Abortion Word Choice Troubles Some

If there is anything that is a waste of time is when the media over-analyzes every little word a politician said, so they can make something out of one sentence. This is why they have to check with a PR person before speaking. Because if they make a simple error, they get labeled racist, sexist, extremist or whatever. Leave that to the bloggers, please. Thank you.
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CONGRESSIONAL BLACK CAUCUS & FOX NEWS UPDATE


I was curious about the alliance of the Congressional Black Caucus and FOX News for presidential debates. So many of the favorite FOXNews hosts dog the CBC all the time. So do I, so I'm not saying its wrong. I was just surprised, but happy that Harold Ford would have something to do.

The CBC didn't expect all the sexiest candidates to bow out because FOX News has gone overboard with the partisan reporting. I agree. Since Republicans lost in November, FOXNews reporting, which has always been biased, has had an angry, mean-spirited edge to it. Either way, most of the candidates are unwilling to go on FOX, so now the CBC might be trying to pull out of the deal. TheHill.com - CBC is split over quitting debate on Fox
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RUDY POST


Giuliani is betting everything on 9/11. He actually has a pretty good record as mayor of New York although it has some kinks and errors in it. I'm not surprised that he's bringing back images of 9/11 now. Giuliani warns of 'new 9/11' if Dems win - Politico.com. This fear tactic worked well for Bush Administration in 2004, but it tanked in 2006, so it might not be the right choice.
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One of Rudy's biggest drawbacks is that he has a temper. He has never really caught on that, as a politician, you have to deal with the media when you want to and when you don't. The Daily News calls him rude because he went off when someone asked him when he will say violations of civil rights in response to terrorism has gone too far. I guess he doesn't plan on saying anything. Ex-mayor erupts over query on rights - Nation / World - NY Daily News
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Despite all of his liberal leanings, Rudy is still the first choice of white GOP evangelicals. I realize his 9/11 reputation is strong with this set, but does it really outweigh everything else? He is pro-choice, which I thought was a deal-killer with this group. He is not going to lay any hammer down on illegal immigration, he's pro-gay marriage, gun control and let's not even start with the mistresses and wives. Of all the top candidates, I still say that Romney is the one who reflects their values the most, except he isn't a "Christian" by label. Abortion aside, conservative Christians like Giuliani for 2008 GOP nomination - Los Angeles Times

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Have you noticed that Giuliani won't talk about Iraq? He will talk all about 9/11 and how we have to avoid another one, but he won't talk about Iraq. He says we have to rebuild, but he won't give an opinion on much else. Because of this, he's only inviting the press to push him even harder on the topic. Giuliani declines to assess troop hike - Los Angeles Times
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Despite his stand on gun control, abortion, gay marriage and...well basically every other issue conservatives seethe over, Rudy did pretty well in Spartanburg, SC. You're asking, what in the hell was he doing anywhere near or around South Carolina. I know, right? Giuliani leads Spartanburg fundraising contest GoUpstate.com Spartanburg, S.C.
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We spoke too soon. Now Rudy is flip flopping on abortion, somewhat. His opinion on partial-birth abortions, which SCOTUS recently struck down, has changed since he was in favor of it in 1997. Giuliani shifts stance on disputed abortion method - Los Angeles Times
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Oh hell, now he's shifting on immigration. He used to be an advocate for illegal immigrants and fought efforts to deny illegals benefits. Now...not so much. Clearly the handlers are being listened to which is a shift in itself. Rudy doesn't usually listen to anyone. That's the NY way. Giuliani Shifts His Tone on Immigration - New York Times
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OMG, it's getting worse. Now Rudy is changing his stand on gun control. He used to think guns were bad, which one can understand from the NY that was NY when he first came to power. However, one little trip to SC and that mandate on handguns he once talked about was just a moment of weakness. Jonathan Martin's Blog - Politico.com. You can see it now. Rudy doing a commercial saying, "Guns don't kill people. People kill people." Actually, Rudy people with guns kill people, but I understand your base, so if you want to go with the "guns for everyone" theme, that's what you should do.
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CHARTER SCHOOLS TAKING OVER D.C.


Is this good news for charter schools in D.C.? WAPO: A Boom for D.C. Charter Schools. WAPO says test scores are lagging, but schools are multiplying and its changing the landscape of education. Demand for the District's publicly funded, independently operated charter schools is at a high -- enrollment has risen an average of 13 percent annually since 2001. If the trend continues, more students will attend charter schools than traditional public schools by 2014, according to a study last year by Fight for Children, a nonprofit advocacy organization.

I'm in favor of charter schools because I'm in favor of parents having as many choices as possible when it comes to the education of their children. I'm always the first to say, "Not with my taxes!" but education is one area where I think most reasonable people will make an exception. We all have a vested interest in these kids getting a good education. I'm not surprised that scores are lagging at the outset. Many of these kids were taken out of the public school system because they weren't achieving there and parents wanted to try something else. It will take some time for the kids to catch up.
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OBAMA POST

4.24.2007



Don't let me go more than one day without an Obama Post because my Inbox will crash the server with all these articles. Here are a select few and by few I mean a ton.

Rapper Russell Simmons got upset that Obama criticized the degradation of women in rap videos and music. Russell thinks they are poets. Would he consider it poetry if someone was referring to his two daughters as bitches & hos? Or his wife/ex-wife. Enough said about that one. ABC News: Rap Mogul Takes On Obama
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Does the Chicago Sun Times have a problem with Obama? I thought the Tribune was the conservative paper. Either way, the Sun Times, Chicago's junior paper, researches Barry's former ties with some slumlord name Rezco. Barack Obama and his slumlord patron - CHICAGO SUN-TIMES. To be fair, it's Chicago. It's hard to do business without somebody shady weaving into it. It's part of the culture!

Apparently the story is so interesting, they had to do it in two parts. Why didn't City Hall stop him? - CHICAGO SUN-TIMES


Obama's response was that he didn't know Rezko was a sleaze so leave him alone. Obama: I didn't know about Rezko problems - CHICAGO SUN-TIMES

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Thanks to Rikyrah for sending me this article on Michelle, Barack's rock Chicago Tribune, giving us more reasons to like him. Good taste in women is worth half a vote. Now if he could move a little to the center/right, he could get the other half. I will say that Michelle is an assertive, blunt woman and that will probably rub some people who will think a wife should be softer and less outspoken.
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This is the second article in the last two weeks I have seen trying to place Obama and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, together. The last one accused Barry of copping all of Patrick's speeches, which I doubt was true. This one, Daily Herald: The Kindred Rise of Obama, Patrick, suggest they are kindred spirits because they both went to Harvard. "Both candidates share similar life stories, rising from modest means with the help of family and education. For Obama, it meant Columbia University before Harvard Law School, where he was the first black president of the Harvard Law Review. For Patrick, who grew up in the shadow of the Robert Taylor Homes housing project in Chicago, it meant Milton Academy before Harvard University and Harvard Law." Has this writer read Dreams of My Father? They don't share similar life stories at all.
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Thomas Freidman is still in Africa, trying to find more ways to make $$ off that book that has sold more copies than there are human beings on the planet. He talks about how, while in Kenya, his wife saw a poster of Barry & Michelle while they were in Nairobi a long time ago to encouraging people to get HIV tested. Also, a bunch of people are trying to put together some kind of party for him. It isn't clear whether they expected him to come. Everyone Tom meets shows him their picture with Obama and it gets Tom to thinking, when was the last time an American leader was looked at as a role model abroad? Well, it's been a while, but Clinton was loved like a rock star when he was the prez. Help Wanted - New York Times.
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The NYTimes Blog talks about Obama's 5-Point American Moment, the title of his recent speech giving his views on foreign policy. Obama Outlines His Foreign Policy Views - New York Times
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The Iowa Citizen Action Network is a 14,000 member organization that had Obama speak recently. They were frustrated by the war, health care, jobs going over seas...the list is too long, you know it all. Obama told them that these frustrations can become catalysts for change and some other stuff that should probably be on a bumper sticker.

"Look at these challenges and it's tempting to get discouraged, but one of the things is to be convinced that they can be solved," Obama said. "These problems are not the result of impersonal forces. These are decisions made every day by people. People just like you and me, except they've been in Washington too long." Obama shared his experiences with effecting change at the local level while serving as a community organizer for neighborhoods affected by steel mill closings in Chicago's far south side. Inspired by the civil rights movement of the 1960s, he took the $13,000-a-year job upon graduating from Columbia University.

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Yahoo! News reports that Obama said Bush falls short as world leader. One of the most obvious statements of the decade, second only to, "I love my Mom." People, you don't have to make a news piece out of everything the man says.

Also in Iowa, now that he's gotten a taste of it thanks to all the haters in the media, Obama doesn't think dirty politics are a good idea. Obama calls for end of 'harmful politics' - The Daily Iowan. That might be obvious statement #3.

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The Tribune laid out Obama's views on the environment and if he thinks the entire planet will be under water in 20 years or 40. Obama strong on environment Chicago Tribune

Also, there were somewhere near 50 million people at the Earth Day event he spoke at. press-citizen.com: Obama Rally Draws 10,000. Yes, they say 10,000, but that's because the media is racist and they always undercut our rallies and marches. Remember when they said about 26 people showed up to the Million Man March the first year? Yeah, so...at least 50K came to see Obama.
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More on how Barry is taking all those blacks that Hillary thought owed her something. Can you just imagine how many pins she is sticking into voo doo dolls right now? I almost feel for her. Obama’s Rise Strains Loyalty on Clinton Turf - New York Times. This should probably be in a Hillary post instead of here, but I'm too lazy to make one.

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No need to be in everyone's business, but releasing tax returns is routine. The Obama's income went down a bit because those Dreams of My Father royalties have slowed and the royalties for his current book probably aren't going to cover the advance until later this year.

Obamas release tax returns Chicago TribuneThe Illinois senator released his 2006 federal tax return Monday, a day ahead of Tuesday's tax filing deadline. Obama and his wife, Michelle, reported taxable income of $983,826, down from $1.6 million in 2005.

I owed taxes again this year, so I don't want to talk about it. Just move on.
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COPS - THE CAPITOL HILL EPISODE


Wonkette has a cute take on Politico's recent article listing the members of Congress who are currently under investigation. The Following Congressmen Will All Be in Jail By the End of the Term - Wonkette. This list would have been much longer if it was done last year, but this is respectable. I'm sure it will grow as we get into the term.

They should do a White House version as well. Don't you dream of this picture being a reality?
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FENTY'S FIRST 100 GETTING WAY TOO MUCH ATTENTION


The big news is about the House passing a bill to give D.C. residents a vote in Congress (although the Senate is not cooperating), which Mayor Adrian Fenty has played a huge role in. But there is more about Fenty in all the DC mags and paps since his first 100 days. Here are just a few:

He certainly isn't a shy one, but he knows what he's doing. He's smart about the PR and I hate to give D.C. residents this news, but I don't think you'll be able to keep your mayor for much longer. He's headed for....well, D.C. but you know what I mean. If D.C. does get a vote, maybe that vote is his next career step.
A High-Profile Start - washingtonpost.com


WAPO has a whole video and audio montage to trace his first 100 days. Adrian M. Fenty D.C. Bio (washingtonpost.com) I like Fenty, but I think this might be overdoing it a bit. Personally, until he does something about those jacked up streets, he is still on probation in my opinion. And I will be sending him the bill for the next Wheel Alignment I have to get because of driving in and out of that city 4 days a week.
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LOCAL DISTRICT UPDATES

Here are some other happening in the District and surrounding:

Is D.C. having a problem with visitors? I know you can't get into the White House unless you're in the 8th grade, but when I'm in D.C. on the weekends, I can barely walk because there are so many people with fanny packs and maps who use extra vowels when they talk. Oh well. Washington Seeks a Way to Shout, ‘Come Visit’ - New York Times
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Fairfax County Schools have been going 12 rounds with the No Child Left Behind rules since the Act became law. They were refusing to test students for whom English is a second language with the same tests they give other students. But the law says you have to and they seem to have acquiesced. Fairfax Schools Concede On Testing - washingtonpost.com
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DCist is a local blog and this post talks about the ridiculous charges for rent in the District. DCist: D.C.'s Rental Costs Climbing. While the national average for a one bedroom is $939, the D.C. average is $1256. You must keep this in perspective. There are parts of D.C. that are...the best word is undervalued. The housing is very, very cheap because no one wants to live there. The people who live there don't even want to live there, but they can't afford to live anywhere else. These places are the ONLY reason that average is $1256, because I can tell you (and anyone in this area will agree), you will be blessed if you find a 1 bedroom for $1300 anywhere within one hour from D.C. I was paying $1100 for a one bedroom, 750 square foot apartment when I moved here in 1998 before everybody went and lost their damn mind. I can't tell you what I pay now because it will make me cry. And because the condo conversion blew up in the area, apartments are actually pretty sparse, which adds to the rent. Many people, like myself are renting condos.
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The entire state of Maryland wants to ban smokers from the face of the earth. If you are caught smoking anywhere, including your own home, you will stripped naked and dragged through the streets as an example to the kids. At least that's what I heard. I hate smoking anyway, so whatevs. Md. Senate Passes State Smoking Ban - washingtonpost.com
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NEWSOM'S SANCTUARY IS NOT REALITY


San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom is really trying to make a name for himself. He is now saying that San Francisco will be a sanctuary for illegal immigrants. I might have to take away his "hot" status if he keeps this up. Disobeying the law is not sexy. Newsom pledges to make SF a sanctuary for illegal immigrants.
So he's announced on a national scale that San Francisco intends to disobey United States Law. What do the legal citizens and immigrants of San Francisco have to say about that? They better say it quick, because they are about to be overloading with illegals who are having a hard time in other states who are actually taking on their responsibility on this issue.

It's sounds very open, compassionate and...San Franciscan, but when the working class can't find jobs taken by illegals who will do them for less money and without asking for health care and other benefits, it might not sound as good. When the kids of legal citizens and immigrants have to take out $40K in student loans for undergrad because all the grants and financial aid are going to illegals and the children of illegals because they are poor, it won't sound as fair. When their child's grade school becomes overcrowded because of the children of illegals, but illegals aren't paying taxes so the school system isn't getting more money to pay for the growth, it won't sound so compassionate. What happens when the CA and Federal Govt stop funding San Francisco government programs because the city refuses to follow state and federal immigration laws? It is legal for them to deny funds if they can prove it is rationally related to an issue of the public welfare.

San Francisco is a beautiful city; more like a work of art. But if it becomes the sanctuary that Newsom wants for illegals, it will become the exact opposite for everyone else.
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MORE ON ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION



The European Union is not happy about the 680-mile China Wall we are building between the U.S. and Mexico to help curb illegal immigration. EU Official Criticizes U.S.-Mexico Wall. Yeah, I know. Who cares?

The EU believes immigrants should be treated "like people, not like criminals," he said.

First, the wall doesn't prevent immigration. It prevents illegal immigration. Stop punking out and trying to combine the two. That's an old and tired ploy no one is falling for. Second, people who commit crimes are criminals and that is exactly how they should be treated.
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In Colorado, a truck that was transporting illegals rolled over and killed 8 of the 15 men inside. Yet more tales of death due to human trafficking. 9NEWS - Eight dead in rollover; possible human trafficking
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Since illegals make up a majority of the construction jobs in the country, the housing slump is sending them back to jobs on the farm and day-labor camps. Housing Slump Takes a Toll on Illegal Immigrants - New York Times. The pic attached to this story (below) is awesome. Great photography. Money.Cnn.com: Existing home sales pace, prices fall again in March
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PROGRESS ON IMMIGRATION REFORM


This NYTimes editorial talks about the progress being made on illegal immigration in the political arena. Progress on Immigration - New York Times. Congress is looking at "triggers" which are tough border-security benchmarks that the nation would have to meet before other parts of reform would kick in and "touchback" which is the requirement that illegal immigrants leave the country — even if only touching down briefly over the border — before re-entering on a legal footing. These were two issues that many thought would doom immigration reform in a Republican-led Congress.

Democrats are now saying that they are open to well-written trigger provisions, since that could give a bill broader support among Republicans. Reassuring Americans that border security is improving is reasonable, as long as achieving the benchmarks is not the sole and ultimate aim. Republican leaders, to their credit, have backed away from the narrow, enforcement-only approach that disgraced their efforts last year.
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MORE ILLEGALS FILING TAXES


I believe that some think the fact that people here illegally have started to pay taxes somehow negates their illegal status. TAX FILINGS RISE FOR IMMIGRANTS IN U.S. ILLEGALLY - New York Times. One of the major complaint of illegal immigration (besides that its AGAINST THE LAW) is that illegals are using the benefits of America without the responsibility, so if they pay taxes, then they have a right to the benefits, right? No, because they are only doing it now because upcoming immigration reform links tax-paying to possible amnesty. If that wasn't the case, most wouldn't be doing it because before this possible link was announced, they were not filing taxes in any numbers to be a blip on the screen.
And what about all those years they didn't pay taxes? Don't they owe back taxes? That's what happens to Americans who don't pay their taxes. Oh, I keep forgetting. Only legal American citizens and immigrants have to pay the penalty for not obeying the law.
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HIV/AIDS POST


So we always give the guys a hard time for not wanting to slip one on, but women have just as much responsibility to stay safe and prevent unwanted pregnancies and according to this recent study, black women are not holding it down and are paying the price. This article talks a lot about down-low men that women think are purely hetero, but that isn't the point to me. Whether a man is straight or bisexual, he can still give you a disease that might stay forever or even kill you. Clarion Ledger: Denial infects the Delta - Study: Black women's attitudes toward safe-sex practices deadly. For myself, every black girlfriend I have is very adamant about birth control and condoms, so maybe its a Delta thing? I don't know.
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The U.N. says that the work of the administration and private organizations of getting more AIDS drugs to poor countries is working, but its still not enough. This year the number went from 700,000 to 2 million. That's an awesome improvement. We just need to keep it up. AIDS Drugs Reach More People, U.N. Report Says, but Not Enough - New York Times

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I know you're sick of hearing me say this, but if you don't have Times Select, you should. Despite its bias, the NYTimes has the best writers and columnists probably only comparable to the Washington Post. This article, Shackles on the AIDS Program, talks about how although Bush's ambitious AIDS program is doing well, government policy and posturing is screwing it up. You mean the government is making it harder to get something done? What a surprise.

Here's the problem. The progam covers all the various stages of the disease, but it's focus on preventing HIV is only allowed 20% of the money sent. Congress wanted it this way. The rest is for medicine and other things. The even bigger problem is that, of this 20%, one-third has to go to abstinence until marriage initiatives. "More money has been spent in that area than on other prevention activities, including distribution of condoms and blocking mother-to-child transmission."

The program assists AIDS victims in over 120 countries, focusing mostly on 15 African countries. The writer also notes that now that it has been proven that you can reach the masses as critics said we couldn't, the program needs "to shift its emphasis from emergency relief to building the capacity of affected nations to sustain the effort against AIDS for decades." I agree.
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THE WORLD HAS GOTTEN TOO FLAT...AND RIDICULOUS



Okay, this iPod craze has completely gotten out of hand. On the other hand, Thomas Freidman will probably use this picture in the next revised update on The World Is Flat so it can sell 500 more million copies. Gizmodo: Everyone Really Does Have an iPod. Oh, and the fact that he/she is also holding a huge gun is a little disconcerting.

The only thing better than heavily armed Africans with iPods is bourgeois Americans with 24ct gold iPods because I've been looking for some way to get rid of the $800 burning a whole in my wallet. Amosu 24ct Golden iPod: Finally. - Gizmodo.


Here's an idea. Ditch the gun, buy a Nano for $200 and send the other $600 to Africa for HIV/AIDS prevention. Or me, because I'm in a law school and I need money.
Photos from Gizmodo.com
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MY BABY ISN'T LEAVING


This is the best news of the year so far. My baby, Tai Shan, might not be going to China when he turns two years old this summer. Dry the Tears: Tai Shan Likely to Stick Around - washingtonpost.com. This was the deal. The pandas are on loan for 10 years for $10million. Any babies they produce can stay with mama for 2 years, but have to come back to China after that. It sounded fine and good until Tai Shan actually got here. Cutest Baby Ever! You can't look at these pictures and not love this baby. The little fatty just stole hearts all around, including mine. I was already planning my very own civil disobedience protest, with kidnapping being Plan B at the two year mark. I'm not alone. At the least, an international incident sparking WWIII was bound to happen.

But there is hope. China said we might be able to keep Tai Shan another 2 years. I'm glad because I love him and HE IS MINE! The city is glad because he's a cash cow and worth more PR than money could ever buy. China is fine with it because they are breeding pandas like rabbits now. They have 16 babies at the zoo that Tai Shan was supposed to be returned to so he can get to know other pandas and mate. Now that they have more pandas than they can handle, they aren't so urgent in taking Tai Shan away.

Now a problem can arise if Mei gets pregnant again. What happens to Tai Shan when baby #2 comes? He'll probably have to be moved off by himself. I would take him in if he wasn't 5,000 lbs...and a panda. These are couple of my favorite pics of the little yummie pie.
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WHAT ABOUT THE STICKS & STONES?


Words can never hurt me, but sticks and stones is another story. I'm glad to hear that the wave against obscene rap is still going on, at least a little. I didn't expect it to last more than week after the Imus thing went down. After all, when the cameras and mics go away, so do the "leaders."
I was upset when I heard Russell Simmons refer to these rappers as "poets" who shouldn't be attacked by the community. There hasn't been a rapper poet since Tupac and most of his best raps never made it to the radio because they weren't about sex or violence. All this crap that is out now is crap. They aren't poets. They're punks who hide behind their "music" because they're too coward to actually tell the truth which is that they do this just for the $, not meaning.

Now Simmons has said that the rap industry should ban three words "bitches" "hos" and "nigger." My Way News - Simmons Says 3 Epithets Should Be Banned. Uhm.....okay, but what does that do? Most of those words don't get through on the radio or the videos anyway, so what would this change? They could replace those three words with "sun" "moon" and "stars," but if the message that comes across the radio and in the video is still violent and misogynistic, why bother? Words are words and although I'd be happy to never hear any of those three words again, they are just words. Hip-hop's Simmons wants to remove offensive words - Yahoo! News

It's the message of not only condoning, but glorifying and celebrating crime, drug use, promiscuity, degradation of women and materialism that does the damage. As a proponent of the 1st Amendment, I'm not willing to make anyone change anything they want to say. It falls upon people in the public to stop buying, going to concerts and supporting this music, advertisers to stop bankrolling it and parents to stop setting a bad example by reinforcing it. No matter how much they spit out "poetry," these guys are in this for the money. Words are words, but only money has the power of sticks and stones.
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HOUSE PASSES D.C. VOTE BILL

4.23.2007


Wow, this could really be happening. And we didn't even have to go to war or anything. D.C. is going to become a real democracy. Cool beans.
ABC 7 News - House Passes Bill Giving D.C. a Vote


Now if those Senators don't go and mess this up. If they vote it down I can see military action being necessary. 1040 forms will be ripped up and thrown all over the place or the 1040 instruction booklets will be used as weapons to smack the living tar out of people.
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IS IT EVEN POSSIBLE TO NOT RECALL THIS MUCH INFORMATION


I wasn't going to say much about the Albert Gonzales controversy at the AG office because I think it's boring. Unless you can find the 5 million e-mails that Karl Rove & Al deleted, I don't think this thing is going to get any sexier. I have to hand it to Al. I thought he was dead in the water a while ago, but somehow manages to stay afloat.

I do however want to share this pic I found at wonkette.com of a dude who was at the hearing and was keeping track of how many times Al said "I don't recall" or "I don't remember." Marine Hero of the Day - Wonkette. In the end it was something close to 75. I didn't even think it was possible for a competent adult to forget so much that had just happened a few months ago. My favorite was how he said he remembered giving the order to fire the chumps but can't remember if he was in the meeting where others said the order was given.

I think his next strategy should be to just keep saying, "I know you are, but what am I" until one of the older members of the Senate Committee just loses it and yells at him to go back to Mexico or something racist like that, thus making him the victim and all is saved. Now that is something I would blog about.
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THE BLACK REPUBLICAN IS STILL IN BUSINESS


I had thought The Black Republican was down for the count after not seeing a new issue in the longest. But I was wrong. From La Shawn Barber's Corner, I find out that The Black Republican is alive and well and she has an article in it. La Shawn Barber’s Corner » The Black Republican.

The latest issue talks about Hillary Clinton's plantation trapping urban blacks in poverty, prominent black Americans who are leaving the blue for the red, Democrats waging war on God. That last one seems a bit extreme. All the Democrats I know are religious churchgoers, but I only know like 3 people. As with most Republican sources, I'll agree with some of it, but not all. What's a centrist to do? We're never satisfied. National Black Republican Association Magazine

Also, the cover story is about recently married Angela McGlowan. Angela is a nice lady. She was Miss D.C. 1994. I met her when she worked in Diversity for News Corp and was a FOX News Analyst. Angela also wrote a book, Bamboozled, on how she sees Americans being exploited by the lies of the liberal agenda. Her wedding was nice. Pictures were in Washington Life, a local society mag.
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I CAN'T BELIEVE THEY AREN'T DEAD YET


How this couple has avoided coming down with Ebola or going missing is beyond me. Couple attempts 1,000-day, non-stop cruise around world - USATODAY.com. Oh yeah, it's because they are cruising but not on a cruise ship. If they were on a cruise ship, they would have disappeared and/or died by week three.
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ANOTHER PERSON CLEARED BY DNA EVIDENCE


As much as District Attorneys must love DNA to nail someone, they have to hate to see this. DNA to clear 200th person - USATODAY.com

The 200th person is about to be cleared based on DNA sampling after spending 25 years in prison. Yet another person in jail, or even on death row, for a crime they didn't commit. Can you just imagine how many innocent are dead and gone? This man will never ever get 25 years of his life back.
Most prosecutors do the best they can, despite what one might think after the Duke fiasco. I would bet that most of the blame lays in the fact that, no matter how much they say they do, juries don't go just on the evidence. They go on their gut and their prejudices, which we all have. The good thing about DNA is that it doesn't have any prejudice and it can't lie. It is a scientific fact.
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AN OPEN LETTER TO SHARPTON & JACKSON

I enjoyed reading this article which is on EURweb.com titled, An Open Letter to Revs. Jesse Jackson & Al Sharpton. Here's a bit of it.

"It’s the 150th anniversary of the infamous Dred Scott decision and conversely the 60th anniversary of the major league debut of Jackie Robinson. And of course, we’re all aware it’s the 30th anniversary of the landmark miniseries Roots and even the 15th of the Los Angeles civil disturbances. One could argue that our ancestors are speaking in unison with a message that rang true in 1607 and all the intervening years leading up to today in 2007."

It's a well written letter to "our leaders." However, what makes me want to post it is 100% based on the fact that the reader who sent it to me titled the e-mail:

"An Open Letter To Rev Hot Comb and Rev Baby Daddy"

Hat Tip: Sergio
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TARGET INVESTIGATION


I would like to request to any detective agency or police force in the country that they investigate what Target is pumping through the air conditioning system in their stores. We all know that casinos pump extra oxygen into the casinos to keep us alive and alert, feeling good. There is some kind of air crack or other drug that makes you spend 10X what you were supposed to in that store. I went in yesterday to buy a few pairs of trouser socks and a lamp. I came out with a bill for $217.00. Please investigate this for me. Seriously.
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CAPITOL HILL POST



Unfortunately, California Congresswoman Juanita Millender-McDonald died from cancer. Doesn't it just seem like everyone has cancer? It has to be environmental. So sad. I didn't even know she was sick.

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The GOP is acting like a spoiled loser as they official declare the Dems first 100 days the worst 100 days in Congressional History Ever. That's a slight exaggeration, but they did say the Blue sucked. Democrats' first 100 days deemed failure by GOP - Nation/Politics - The Washington Times, America's Newspaper
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Don't even get me started on the history of the drama in the Hispanic Caucus. The drama goes back several years when female membership jumped up and the women said that the men are being a little old school and not giving the women their due respect. Then people started calling other people whores and cussing in official interviews. Awesome. Now, one of the most outspoken members, Linda Sanchez of California has quit.
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MODERATE REPUBLICANS PREFER DEMOCRATIC CONGRESS



If you have NYTimes Select, which you should, you can read this article on how the Republicans say there are pluses to the current Democratic control of Congress. You know like when your boyfriend dumps you, you say that this is actually a good thing because you really wanted to focus on your career right now anyway. Democrats' Rise Has Pluses, Say G.O.P. Centrists - New York Times.


The article focuses on the Republican centrists and moderates who are being treated better under Democratic control then they ever were under a very conservative Republican controlled Congress. So instead of being the red-headed stepchild you can't stand and want to send to military school, they are the red-headed full biological child that you love but is not your favorite.

I don't have a picture of a donkey and elephant together, so you get an orangutan and tiger.

******Remember, if you have a .edu address, you can get Times Select for free.

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DARFUR POST


Bush repeated the Administration's stand on Darfur, which is still, "we're really upset about this and we want to do something. And by something, we mean not really anything." Administration Still Weighing Sudan Options - washingtonpost.com. Yes, we are militarily over-extended right now, but I'd prefer it if he said, "we're not doing anything," or DO SOMETHING. No more of these diplomatic threats that the Sudanese have already figured out we will not follow through on. Other countries are waiting, hoping that we come up with a solution before acting. In my opinion, China needs to fix this, since they own half of Africa already and they have about 10 billion people in their army.
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More bad news. Sudan is painting its planes to look like UN planes so they can safely reach the country carrying more arms to help them continue their genocide. They are also using the planes to bombard villages. I guess this saves them the time it takes to individually hack everyone up with machetes. Sudan Flying Arms to Darfur, Panel Reports - New York Times. This is yet another violation of the Security Council, but at this point, is that even necessary to point out? This is just so sick.

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And if you have Times Select, which you should, here's an interesting piece by Lydia Polgreen on how something, finally anything, could start to turn the tide in the genocide. Militia Talks Could Reshape Conflict in Darfur - New York Times. Here's the opening:

"The two rebels sitting together on a dry riverbed could just as easily have been sworn enemies, perched on opposite sides of an abyss that has cleaved their homeland in two. But their talks on a military alliance of Arab and non-Arab tribes in Darfur could radically reshape the conflict, giving new life to rebel groups that have fought Khartoum for more than four years and undermining the government's use of Arab militias to quell the rebellion."

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This is some good news. The UN is going to get into Sudan to protect African Union peacekeepers, of which several have been killed in this tragedy, which could set the stage for a UN military presence in the region to do something about this. Sudan Drops Objections to U.N. Aid in Darfur - New York Times

"President Omar Hassan al-Bashir of Sudan has repeatedly defied United Nations requests and pressure from governments elsewhere in Africa and around the world to permit international intervention in Darfur, saying such action would violate his country’s sovereignty. The package calls for sending 3,000 well-equipped military police officers along with six attack helicopters and other aviation and logistics support to Darfur. The steps are the second stage of a much delayed three-stage proposal whose ultimate aim is to create a 21,000-member joint African Union-United Nations force to replace the 7,000-member African Union force there now."
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CHINA & THE U.S. NEED MARRAIGE COUNSELING


Do you get the feeling that China just doesn't like us as much as it used to? Maybe the passion has gone out of the relationship. We do nag them constantly about human rights, but what choice do they give us? We have gained some weight...okay, let's face it, we're fat and maybe they just aren't attracted to us anymore. Also, I suspect there is something going on between China and Russia, that ho. I hate her. China Leans Less on U.S. Trade - New York Times.

It's probably not as bad as it seems. The U.S. dollar is very weak and every other country under the sun is courting China's yen, but they are still tied to us more than anyone else. However, new Democratic control of Congress could be a problem. The Dems will probably push more for human rights and use trade as a tool. I agree with this policy. As much as I appreciate the value of China, I also appreciate the influence we could have in human rights.

To be sure, China’s exports to the United States are huge and growing, as is the trade imbalance, which is significantly larger than the European Union’s deficit with China. China surpassed Canada in the first two months of this year as the largest exporter to the United States. China also overtook the United States in the second half of 2006 to become the world’s second-largest exporter of goods over all, after Germany. China is still nearly 25 times as dependent on exports to the United States as a percentage of its total economic output as the United States is on exports to China.
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EU AGREES TO CRIMINALIZE BELIEFS


Europe is at it again. I think they are trying to out-PC us. Last week I blogged about how some schools in London have decided not to teach the Holocaust because it offends Muslims. Yes, you read it right. They don't want to inflame the hate the Muslims already have for the Jews by making them hear the facts of history. Now, the entire EU wants to take it all the way to the other end and over the top. They want to criminalize Holocaust denial. So basically, it would be illegal to say what you believe. Despite all the facts, evidence and first hand accounts, Holocaust deniers are complete idiots clouded by their anti-semitism, but they have a right to be. They can deny that the Holocaust, slavery or (INSERT HISTORIC EVENT THAT WE HAVE 100% RELIABLE PROOF HAPPENED HERE) ever happened. To make that a crime would only give sympathy to the last people who deserve it. FT.com / Europe - EU aims to criminalise Holocaust denial
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A DAY OF REMEMBRANCE

4.20.2007

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CATCH YA LATER

4.19.2007

I'm at an off-site currently and can't post today. I don't have my Google Bar on this computer, so I can't link properly. Still, here are a couple of articles you should read. Just copy & paste the URL.

Black America Web tells the story of how Nikki Giovanni knew the VATech killer and, as a professor at VATech, she kicked him out of one of her classes two years ago. At least someone had the sense to do it. She also gave a great speech at the convocation for the slain and injured students the other day.
http://www.blackamericaweb.com/site.aspx/headlines/giovanni041907

NBC got a lot of backlash for showing the video. Many of the victim's families cancelled scheduled interviews with NBC stations because of it. It's a hard decision. I'm in the media business and I know that this is news. But I'm also a person and I don't want this psycho to get any play at all. This is what he wanted. How do you feel?
http://today.reuters.com/news/articlenews.aspx?type=domesticNews&storyid=2007-04-19T144342Z_01_N19398228_RTRUKOC_0_US-USA-CRIME-SHOOTING-NBC.xml&src=rss&rpc=22

The NYTimes talks about how the school is limited in what it can do with a mentally ill student. This can't be an easy thing to deal with, but this guy's behavior went beyond mental illness. He's been a problem for two years now. Arson, Stalking and Harassment are crimes anyone could be expelled for.
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/19/us/19protocol.html?_r=1&th&emc=th&oref=slogin


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SOME JUSTIFIED ANGER

4.18.2007

Okay, Monday and Tuesday I was just feeling the grief and shock from what happened at VATech. This senseless, random killing of kids and so many at that was horrifying. I wasn't quick to blame because closing down a campus the size of VATech is like closing down a small city and I think if they locked the kid in the building, he would have just kept killing until he was out of ammo. Besides, you can predict crazy.

But now that I hear all the warning signs that were given about this kid, I feel a little angry. This guy was a complete psycho. He wasn't just a weird kid who made people uncomfortable. He was openly and completely insane. He had been stalking girls on the campus since 2005. All of his class projects revolved around grotesque violence, pedophilia and other graphic, sick things. He purposefully stared at people to make them uncomfortable. He threatened people all the time. One of his teachers told the University and the Police that this boy was sick and dangerous and needed to get help or be removed from the school. Several students told the teachers of the classes he was in that they would not come back to class if this guy was there because he scared them to death. If it gets that bad, something should have been done. Students said as soon as they heard about what was going on, they all said it had to be him. The stalking alone should have gotten him kicked out. It was more than one girl. How many red flags do you need?

After hearing about this, I'm sure the parents of the dead and wounded feel even more pain and that's not something I'd want, but they deserve to know the truth and other schools have to be aware that there is weird and there is crazy and they need to be on the look out for kids that exhibit consistent psycho behavior.
In morbid plays, Cho's characters dreamed of killing - CNN.com

I don't have kids, but I have two nephews, Ches & Evan, who just started college and one niece who will be starting at UW-Madison next year. I love them all so much and worry about them. I especially worry about my niece, Elle, because she is very pretty, sheltered and naive. She's the kind of girl who would try to be nice to someone like this killer which makes me imagine him becoming obsessed with her. But you can't hold on to them. You have to let them go and pray.
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IPOD ATTACHMENT MADNESS


People will go out of their way to find something they can attach their iPod to. The fireplace with an iPod dock was really the last straw for me.

However, I will give Gizmodo credit for another genius ipod attachment product review. Sad thing is, I'd actually buy this. Load-thing Solves a Problem That Never Existed - Gizmodo
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BLACK BLOGGERS V. COSMO


I saw a mention of this at one the black gossip blog I visit regularly, Concrete Loop. I didn't think much of it until I saw this article at Radar. Radar Online: Black Bloggers' Beef With CosmoGirl Contest . Cosmo had a contest inviting teenagers to send a video short about a social issue. Readers vote and the winner gets $10K and a feature in the magazine. Well, a black blog told its readers to vote for a sister named Kiri who was the only black girl out of 3 semi-finalist. So the girl was already good before the black bloggers started propping her. This message went to other black blogs and suddenly Kiri started to pull ahead. This is not illegal or unusual. That is how most of these contests go. People get their friends to vote and spread the word.

When Kiri made it from #3 to #1, CosmoGirl stopped the show. From that moment on, whenever anyone went to vote, they got this message: "We have determined that the online voting has been corrupted as a result of one or more instances of tampering with the voting process by users. As a result, none of the online votes will be counted, and we will submit all three of the semi-finalists to our panel of experts for final judging and selection of a winner."

Where exactly is the tampering? The site invites anyone who visits it to vote and that's what they did. One IP address can vote once a day. That's what people did. And while the two other semi-finalists might have split the white votes because voters would have connected with one video more than the other, it's not hard to believe that Kiri would have an advantage by getting all the black vote if a lot of black people voted. I've seen the short and it's a really good piece, which is why she made it to the semi-finals in the first place. My question is that why was the voting fair when someone else was 1st, but now that Kiri is first, there must be something wrong?

I don't know exactly what is going on, so I'm only speculating, but I call SUSPECT. Cosmo has responded, but still has not explained that anything illegal happened, just that Kiri got a huge amount of votes. I bet they didn't expect this to get so much attention. I mean who pays attention to a little black blog anyway? Well Cosmo - all 15 of my readers take issue!
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ENTERTAINMENT POST


Whoever came up with the idea for a Jackie Chiles Law Society is a genius. I plan to start one at my law school today. After a semester of criminal law we could all use a laugh. The site focuses on popular culture's conception of the law. That would be a great topic for an Independent Study for credits.
Deseretnews.com: Actor calls 'Chiles' role an outlet
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I am actually caught up on this show. 24 & LOST are probably the only two shows I'm up to date on. I am disappointed with Day 6, but I still love Jack. Last week when Ricky Schroeder's character found Jack in the warehouse and he saw all the guys that Jack killed, he said, "Damn Jack." That was about the funniest line of the whole season. But the season has clearly lost its way. That's okay. They've been so good that 1 out 6 is not bad. I'm just nervous about this Ricky Schroeder character. Are they going to kill Jack? Jack has already died at least twice on the show. Once in Season 2 when he was being tortured his heart stopped. Then again he died in an attempt to evade the Chinese. Both times he was brought back, but I don't think he can be brought back a third time. I still hate President Palmer Nano and I'm mad that Regina King has gotten about 5 minutes airtime. Still, this has been one of the best dramas with diverse roles for black people (remember crazy Sherry Palmer?) and I love psycho Jack.

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Too bad Variety cancelled Andy Barker. I've only seen a couple of episodes, but I thought it was hilarious. Funny characters and a quirky sense of humor. The sister who is on the show, Nicole something or other is from MAD TV and she is hilarious. Also, the guy who played Buster on my beloved Arrested Development is on this. I think there are still about 4 episodes of this show stored in my DVR, so I'll just have to enjoy them and be done. Variety.com - NBC cancels 'Andy Barker, PI'
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Also, you have to check our NBC's Raines. I set my DVR to tape it because I like Jeff Goldblum. He's kind of weird sexy and I'm a big Jurassic Park fan. Anyway, I finally got around to watching a couple of episodes this weekend and the show is really good. Goldblum's style of speech with his stuttering and hesitation makes the ordinary seem quirky and funny. Maybe I just have a thing for crazies on the side of the law.

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THIS IS NOT WORKING

The situation in Iraq is getting worse, not better since the surge.
4 bombs kill 127 people in Baghdad - Yahoo! News

This is not working. We have to come up with another plan. I am well aware of the damage it does to our interests if we "lose" this war. Countries are already doubting our military strength. If we lose, the Middle East will feel victorious over the Western devil and all that. Russia and China's growing friendship is troublesome. A show of might would do good for us in their eyes. But we are not winning this war and the dead keep piling up. These are people dying; 18, 19, 20 year-olds dying for something that is not working. They aren't dying on the bad days, they are dying every single day. We need to either leave or come up with a different plan. Adding more men is not a different plan, it's just adding numbers to the original plan.

And I don't want to hear there is no Plan B. George W. Bush is the Commander In Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces. He better come up with a Plan B. That's his job. What is he trying to save? His legacy is shot because of this war. There is nothing he can do about that. And this weak attempt to maintain some dignity for himself is not worth American lives. Admit you've failed and either get out or bring back all those people who told you so to help you come up with a new idea.
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MICHELLE UPGRADES OBAMA

4.17.2007


You have to listen to Beyonce's "Upgrade U" in the background while you read this article about how Michelle Obama raised $750K for her man in her first official role as host of a major fundraiser. That's three-quarters of a mill in one night. "I can help you build up your account," goes the song. Michelle in the game :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES.
The fund raiser was titled, "Women For Obama," but when Obama came to speak after his wife was finished, he said, "I know this was dubbed 'Women for Obama' but let's face it, this is women for Michelle Obama," he said. He knows the deal as well.

Ladies if you're wondering why you can't find a man like Barry, take a look at Michelle. Study and adjust your game accordingly. Educate yourself, wait to procreate, surround your life with meaningful service, hard work and network, network, network. Quality men are attracted to quality women. They want someone who will upgrade their game as much as he can upgrade yours. Michelle knows how to braid her little girl's hair for church and what card stock is appropriate for the "thank you for a lovely dinner" note you mail out no later than the day after you attended the dinner. She reads Essence and The Economist. She may watch Girlfriends, but she also watches Meet The Press.
If the only current events you can talk about is what's in People magazine or why Diddy will never commit to Kim Porter, you need to go back, study again and adjust some more. Nothing worth having comes easy ladies. Tighten it up!
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CANDIDATES NOT NAMED OBAMA POST


John E.
Hotline says John E's campaign is hitting a hiccup as his money guy quits. Hotline On Call: Edwards Finance Director Leaves

The Boston Globe might be calling him a flip-flopper, but I don't buy that on this war. Personally, I would be very suspicious of someone who felt the same about this war the way they did when Congress allowed the President to start it. He should change his tune and it's fine as long as he qualifies it and offers some solutions. John Edwards's changing tune on the Iraq vote - The Boston Globe
John Mc.

Man, and I thought I was being harsh on John Mc when I said his time has passed and his luster has dimmed. Apparently, I was on the money.
Boston Herald: The old soldier won’t surrender: But McCain fights losing battle

He's cutting down his staff just as the others are beefing things up. Not a good sign. Hotline On Call: McCain Trims Headquarters Staff




Rudy
John Podhoretz thinks Rudy has the best chance out of all the 2008 candidates. Doesn't he know he's pro-choice? He seems to think that Rudy is his own worst enemy and if he doesn't straighten it up, he'll lose his chance. He says, "But something strange is going on with your candidacy - something that doesn't reflect the conduct and behavior of the Mayor Giuliani whose ferocious competence and clarity are what have led me to advocate your nomination for more than a year now." He goes through the laundry list of Rudy's accomplishments while Mayor of New York, but says Rudy seems to be winging it now; a move that doesn't look good on him. GET REAL, RUDY By JOHN PODHORETZ - New York Post Online Edition


In a complete waste-of-time bid for the deep, deep South vote, Rudy says he doesn't care about the confederate flag. Alabama can decide that on its own. What in the heck was he doing in Alabama? In Alabama, Giuliani Calls Confederate Flag a Local Issue - New York Times
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FRED THOMPSON POST


Last week it came out that Fred Thompson has lymphoma, which is currently in remission. Some say this disclosure means he's really going to run. I'm looking forward to it. I think the Right needs a little shaking up. The Left has been getting all the attention of late. Of course that's because they have The Chosen One Obama, but Thompson could be an Obama for the Right.
Doctor: Fred Thompson's lymphoma in remission - CNN.com

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Oh Lord, here we go again. He said something about money and Jews and the whole world proceeds to fall apart. I'm hoping that yesterday's tragic events will urge the PC Police to rest for at least a while and realize that there are much more important things to focus on then every world that comes out of every public figure's mouth. Still, he apologized. Thompson says making money is 'part of the Jewish tradition' Chron.com - Houston Chronicle
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MORE STUDENT LOAN MESS


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RELIGION POST


Once they come to America, our pagan and secular influences cause many Hispanics to no longer feel the need to be in mass 40+ hours a week as they did in their previous country. For Some Hispanics, Coming to America Also Means Abandoning Religion - New York Times
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If your doctor is very religy, she's/he's might be giving you a biased diagnosis. I doubt that's true for most doctors. Most religious people are able to fulfill their job duties without conflict. However, if you come in with a tumor sticking out the side of your neck or something like that and your doctor tells you to "Just Pray On It," I would suggest getting a second opinion. Religious bias colors doctors' views: survey - Yahoo! News
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POVERTY IS WORSE THAN WE THOUGHT


The NYTimes says there are more poor people in this country than we think. They don't call it official, but do call it "virtually indisputable," which sounds a lot like calling it official. Counting the Poor - New York Times. In 2005, 37 million of us were living below the poverty line (12.6%). But now the National Academy of Sciences says it was really 41.3 million (14.1%). The difference is that the census only counts people who are receiving government services for the poor, but the NAS is counting those who are poor and still not getting any government services linked to official poverty levels.
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BUSH POST


Remember George W. Bush? He's the guy who is actually POTUS. We don't hear much from him lately which can generally only work in his favor at this point.

Bush is speaking out on the stem cell issue again. Remember when that used to work for him? USAToday.com: Bush Calls For "Culture of Life" . Although initially I had doubts, I have sided with science on this one. Yes, I know its a slippery slope, but my father was recently diagnosed with Parkinson's. I know I came around to this for selfish reasons, but I have been reading up on the issue extensively since getting the news and I feel confident I would come down on this side even without my father's condition.

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Bush bites back at all the No Child Left Behind critics who say he's punishing schools. Bush: NCLB not meant to punish schools, but to help them - CNN.com. The reality is, this program is a good program if it is funded properly and if the accountability is reasonable for the situation. There are schools in areas of the country where even the best teacher can't compete with neglectful or absent parents or drugs and gangs at every door a kid turns to. All of these things effect a child's academic performance. You have to cut them some slack. And you have to fund them properly.

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Everyone but the UK has turned on him. Well, the people of the UK turned on Bush long ago, but he still have the PM on his side, but that relationship is worthless now that Blair is so hated in his own country. I see a divorce of irreconciable differences in the horizon. UK splits with Bush over 'war on terror' The World The Australian

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The EPA says that Bush's plan for the environment is working. What plan? Sci-Tech Today EPA Chief: Bush Climate Policy Working. "The EPA report shows a 3.6 percent decline in greenhouse gas emissions by industry in 2005, some of which presumably reflected the hurricane-related energy supply problems. Carbon dioxide emissions from power plants increased by 2.8 percent in 2005. The EPA report tracked emissions of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels -- the principal greenhouse gas -- and the carbon equivalent of five other greenhouse gases." I don't understand any of that, but I would like to know why gas is back over $3.00.

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ABC News says that the GOP candidates for 2008 are expressing their support for Bush. What candidates are they talking about? I haven't heard anyone but McCain compliment Bush and he's on a downward spiral. ABC News: Support Strong for Bush Among GOP Contenders. I guess Bush is the guy who sticks by his friends no matter what, so he should get the same in return. I guess.
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DOESN'T KEN BURNS KNOW SEPTEMBER IS HISPANIC HERITAGE MONTH?


Hispanics are angry that Ken Burns has left him out of his new WWII documentary. I'll agree that he should have included something about their contribution since he included other races. Also, neither I nor anyone I talked to (including a Hispanic project coordinator) knows anything about the Hispanic WWII presence, so it clearly needs to be told. Burns agreed and added snippets about the Latino veterans during breaks and at the end of each hour of the 14-hour documentary scheduled to air in September on PBS. Not enough, say Hispanics. I'm unclear as to how you can add content to a break. Doesn't a break mean the show is not on?
Hispanics still unhappy with Burns film - Yahoo! News
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MOST BORING CRUISE EVENT EVER


Could anything be more boring? National Review Alaska Cruise - The conservative National Review is sponsoring an Alaskan cruise featuring conservative speakers from all over who will discuss why they think the red party got its butt kicked in November and plot how to spin it so the Iraq war becomes the sole responsibility and fault of Bill Clinton.

Speakers include former MD Senate candidate Michael Steele, former RNC head now lobbyist Ed Gillespie, current mean old lady who hates modern women Kate O'Beirne and....oh no, they've invited Dick Morris. I wonder what he'll talk about? Old yeah, that's right...he doesn't talk about anything but the Clintons. How original and creative of him.

Generally I'd say it was a bad thing that you're very likely to catch Ebola or go missing off the face of the earth if you go on a cruise. But on this one, it will probably be a welcomed distraction.

The cost for a 185 sq foot room goes for: Double:$2,349pp - Single:$3,449pp. Gotta love cruisin'!
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VIRGINIA TECH


What can you say about something like this? You can pray and hope God will bring those who love the dead through this in tact. I agree with Obama when he said that these were tomorrow's leaders and now they're dead for nothing. How do you prevent something like this? Better gun control? No, I don't think that's the issue. There are so many unbalanced people out there for whom one disappointment or bad day can turn them into this man. So what do we do? All the contingency plans in the world can't prevent someone who is intent to kill from doing so. This is a college campus, not a high school or middle school where you can have some control and containment. It's hard enough for parents to send their babies off to college, but this will make them want to keep them at home forever.

Now everyone at schools all over are scared and they will be for a while; especially considering these things happen in groups. Who is next? I remember when the D.C. Snipers were loose in this area. I remember the fear of the random, meaningless murders. It's just all so awful.

Virginia Tech Invent the Future
Police identify killer in Virginia Tech rampage - Los Angeles Times
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HILLARY POST


Remember the SNL skit right after Congress tried and failed to impeach President Clinton? Phil Hartman, as Bill, walks to the podium and looks into the camera and says, "Next time, you best bring some Kryptonite" and walks away. Does Hillary have the same resolve as her man? Can she weather the attacks that are only going to get worse and worse? She says yes. Clinton: Attacks won't scare me off - USATODAY.com

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Politico offers a bunch of numbers I don't understand to say that Hillary is making smart moves with her campaign money considering she has some of the most expensive consultants in her camp. "Clinton reported to the Federal Election Commission an overall total for the quarter of $36 million, the $26 million she raised from Jan. 1 to March 31 and a $10 million transfer from her Senate account. The campaign spent $5 million, about half of the expenses incurred by Republican hopeful John McCain during the same period. And she reported having $1.5 million in debts." Politico: Hillary Runs Thrifty Campaign

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She was recently speaking out against the treatment of injured soldiers home from Iraq in New York's vet hospitals. Clinton: Treatment of troops 'outrageous' - USATODAY.com

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More importantly, she spoke out about Sanjaya on American Idol. Hillary Clinton Weighs in on American Idol’s Sanjaya Malakar – Bodog Beat

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She also cancelled a trip to speak at a celebration at Rutgers University because of the bad weather. Maybe she didn't want to be in any way related to the Imus mess even though that wasn't why she was going. Newsmax.com: Hillary Clinton Postpones Rutgers Trip

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CBN takes the Christian angle of course and while discussing the topic of her prayers, which I thought would be private but whatevs, we also find out that she used to teach Sunday school. Sunday School? I wonder if Hills has a conservapedia.com profile? CBNNews: Hillary Clinton's Prayers - The Brody File
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CONDI FOR VP?


The NYDaily News reports on how the GOP, very dissatisfied with the current crop of presidential candidates, could really use Condi to pump up a ticket. '08 Republican ticket needs Condi-ment to be palatable enough to win, group sez. I still stick by my conspiracy theory that the White House is setting things up so Cheney will have to step down and Condi will become VP, giving the GOP an advantage going into 2008 if she runs for prez. Seriously, Cheney has had about 10 heart attacks no problem, but now he seems to have to go to the hospital for a stubbed toe. It's a set up, people.

Back in the real world, Condi has already said she doesn't want to be pres, but what about VP? That seems like a very good role for her and the blogs have been circulating this idea around for a while now. Google "Condoleeza" + "Vice President" and you'll see what I mean. Although she might be as qualified as many other presidential candidates, she is not a very charming person. This is not an insult, just an observation. One on one, she seems very engaging. Ask the Canadian ambassador. I'm still certain they had/have a thing. POLITOPICS:Condi Rice Gossip.


Yes, she's brilliant and accomplished, but she doesn't have the type of charisma that pulls the masses to you and appears to be too much of an introvert for the top office. But VPs don't have to be charmers, they just have to get you extra votes you would not otherwise get. The problem would be that she is too tied to Bush, who clearly favors her personally, that no candidate would want the stain of this war to touch their administration.


Powell would probably be a better choice. He tarnished his image through Iraq, but everyone knows how he really felt and he did get out. And he does have mass charisma.


I'm not alone. Ari Emmanuel's three predictions at Huffingtonpost.com earlier this year: 1) John McCain will not be the Republican Party's nominee. 2) Hillary Clinton will not be the Democratic Party's nominee. 3) Before the end of Bush's term, Condoleezza Rice will be Vice-President.
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HAVING AN OLD DAD


She's a trophy wife. She's just after his money. What could they possible have in common? Here's the thing that people rarely talk about when discussing the topic of older men with younger women. Will they be alive to see their children grow up? When you look at guys like Larry King (I know, ew), Rod Stewart or Donald Trump having new babies, do they think "I won't be alive to see them graduate from college, get married or see my grandchildren." Most of these men have grown kids from their previous marriages, so they'll likely live to see grandchildren through those kids, but what about the late kid? Do daughters wonder who will give them away when they get married? Do sons wonder who will play ball with me because my Dad is too old to keep up with me? NYTimes: He's Not My Grandpa, He's My Dad


I so love the fact that my parents can see their kids and 10 grandkids growing up. It makes them happy and they feel like they'll live forever because of it.
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OBAMA UPDATE

4.16.2007

It's been, what...two days since I posted about The Second Coming Barack Obama? The Inbox is filling up again, so here's the dump.

For their "Making of A Candidate" series, The ChiTown Tribune tracks where Barry is getting his money from now as opposed to back when he was just a local in Chicago. There is an interactive version of the story in the box to the left of the article. Building Obama's money machine Chicago Tribune
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Lord have mercy, if they do not want to crown this man right now. Clouds part for Obama's appearance - Yahoo! News. Even God must favor him because he cleared the sky in between powerful thunderstorms in Tampa so Obama can talk to what looks like 500,000 people.

Even Barry said, "The Sun Is Shining On Me." This is just one step away from "I Am The Truth and The Light." It's coming people. Don't say you weren't warned. Yahoo! News: Sun Comes Out for Obama

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Awww, he has to have time for the little kids, right? At a recent visit to a school in Maywood (which we used to call Mayhood back in the day), Barry spoke to a bunch of sixth-graders. In addition to asking why God favors him above all others and begging him to heal their leprosy, one kid asked him what he plans to do with his life after his 8 years at the White House are up. Even the kids have been took! Damn that hopeful charisma!!! In response to their questions, Obama talked about the genocide in Darfur and asked them to send their entire allowance to Africa. Daily Herald News: Questions Give Obama Pause

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And Boston's Obama, Governor Deval Patrick, gets a mention alongside the original Obama as the two are compared. Both men were successful in their election bids because they are speaking the language the voters want to hear and that might be because Obama is totally ripping Patrick off. "In the midst of his improbable run for office, Obama and his advisers have evidently studied Patrick's up-from-nowhere victory in Massachusetts and are borrowing themes, messages, and even specific lines for the presidential campaign."


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More on how Barry is thieving all of Hill's donors. The voodoo dolls are clearly not working for her. And what about that husband of hers? You know she only stayed married to him so he could help her get into the White House. Donors Linked to the Clintons Shift to Obama - New York Times

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Somehow to have the man who backed John Kerry's flawless campaign backing Obama now is supposed to be a big deal. I'll just have to defer to the experts on this one. SeattlePi.com: Obama lands a key backer in Adam Smith

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In addition to raising another $700,000k in Hills backyard, Barry also got to go on David Letterman the same night as Halle Berry. Maybe he is the luckiest man in the world? So where was her man candy Gabriel Aubry? He's pretty hot and I feel that his gene pool is sufficient for her purposes, so...NYDailyNews.com: Buzzes through city with 3 fat cat soirees, rakes in at least 700G

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The liberal political group MoveOn is still in business? What started as a diversion from the Lewinsky scandals has really turned into something. And a recent poll among the group's supporters show that they favor the Chosen One with the Pretty One right behind him. " Mr. Obama won 28 percent of the 42,882 votes cast, former Sen. John Edwards, North Carolina Democrat, took second place with 25 percent and Mrs. Clinton garnered 11 percent." The Washington Times: MoveOn supporters put Obama on top.


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The ultra-liberal, ultra high traffic blog Daily Kos is mad at Obama for his recent statements about the war. Obama in the AP story said no lawmaker "wants to play chicken with our troops. ... My expectation is that we will continue to try to ratchet up the pressure on the president to change course.... I don't think that we will see a majority of the Senate vote to cut off funding at this stage.'' Obama says he still supports 'shorter leash' for Bush on Iraq - CHICAGO SUN-TIMES. The blog said it was a ridiculous thing to say and it's a terrible negotiating tool. Gasp! Are they allowed to speak that way of He Who Is The Sun & The Moon? I'm sure lightning struck as soon as the post was published.

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Don't get me started on this Dick Morris. Even when he writes about Obama, he has to write about Hillary. I hate people whose claim to fame is just defaming people they used to know. What else is this man known for besides dogging Bill & Hill? Okay, maybe having a mistress/hooker who keeps a diary, but besides that what? Nothing. Everything he does, the money that clothes and feeds his children is thanks to Bill and Hill. Get a real job. Here's the article where he writes about how Obama is so well-liked because he's the anti-Hillary. The article is written with another writer. I'll bet you $5 that she wrote all the parts about Obama because he doesn't know how to write about anything other than Hill or Bill.
NYPost: OBAMA: THE UN-HILLARY By DICK MORRIS & EILEEN MCGANN
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Obama's donor list is larger than Hillary's. This only means that it took him more people to earn less money. The Washington Times: Obama's donor list larger than Hillary's

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BRAD & Z GETTING ICE CREAM


I know I always dig on the paps for following people around like they do, but I have to be hypocritical when it comes to Z. I love that kid. When I saw this picture of her being carried by what looks like a homeless person, I couldn't resist. Actually it's her Daddy who really has some wardrobe issues, but you know he spoils Z rotten. Look at how big she is! You can just imagine her running that whole joint.
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A MAN AMONG WOLVES


You HAVE TO watch the trailer to this National Geographic Special, A Man Among Wolves, coming on tonight. This man is one of the pack. He runs, sleeps, hunts and plays with them. He actually tore meat off a dead carcass and put it in his mouth to eat just like them. Fur still on and everything. No, I'm serious. This is craziness. Just watch it. There's also a cute piece where a baby wolf he is holding does his little howl. Adorable. If I wasn't in law school and I actually had time to watch TV, I would watch this just to hear how he explains eating raw, dead animal carcass.
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CELL PHONES ARE BRUTAL, MURDEROUS KILLERS


If you thought your cell phone was an innocent piece of electronic genius which, at worse, could only make you sterile or give you cancer, you're underestimating its power. In reality, they are deathly death traps of death. Not only are they killing bees, but they are spreading deadly viruses throughout Afghanistan.

Afghans are scared to death after hearing a rumor that a deadly virus is spreading via cellphones. Deadly virus phone rumors frighten Afghans - Reuters.com. Part of me wants to laugh at this because its so ridiculous, but part is just sad that people could fall for this. When you deprive people of access to information, I guess it makes them more vulnerable to junk like this. On second thought, I bet there are several million people right in the middle of "access to everything" America who would believe it. In the end, I'm most interested in knowing why Reuters put this in the HEALTH section of their news site.

Also - this is EXACTLY the plot behind CELL, a recent book by Stephen King, who is probably the best writer in the world right now. THE STAND is still my #2 book ever and SHAWSHANK is my #2 movie ever. In CELL, a ringing sound via cellphone turns people into crazed zombies and madness ensues. I got the audiobook and I'm not embarrassed to say I was scared to death riding to and from work listening to that thing on my iPod. Sometimes I would stay in the car a little while longer after I had reached my destination because I didn't want to stop.

Anyway, I hope someone clears this up because I heard several people in Kabul are already dead after answering despite seeing "Unknown Number" on the I.D. That's almost asking for it.

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This Independent Online article says that scientists claim radiation from handsets are to blame for a mysterious "colony collapse" of bees. This is when all the bees disappear from the hive leaving the queen, her eggs and few meaningless, lazy, worthless immature workers. Are mobile phones wiping out our bees? - Independent Online Edition Deadbeat Dad Bees is not as creative as sending viruses to actual humans, but compelling non-the-less. I blame rap music instead of cell phones. They've even got a name for this phenomenon: Colony Collapse Disorder. That's CCD for...wait, I just had a Catholic flashback. No, it's a different CCD.
And yes, I am aware this is the same website that claimed a cat had a half cat - half dog litter and scientists created a sheep that is 15% human. What's your point?
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THE BLACK IMPRINT ON AMERICA


I was just saying, "Wouldn't it be a good idea to have a traveling museum displaying the imprint famous black Americans have left on this country?" Great minds think alike. Wheels are just being put into motion, but Tavis Smiley will bring "America at 400: The African-American Imprint in America," traveling museum to major museums in 10 cities for the next fives years starting in 2008. The 10,000- to 15,000-square-foot exhibition will include items such as:

Muhammad Ali's boxing gloves
Phyllis Wheatley's book of poetry, the first published by a black person in 1773
The Cell Door that held MLK as he wrote, "Letter from a Birmingham Jail."
MLK's Nobel Prize

Okay, although I would love to see those things, would I travel to see them? Not likely. It sounds a little boring, but I'm sure there will be interactive stuff and all that whatnot that makes an exhibit worth seeing. They're just in the early steps with the ultimate goal being a formal Smithsonian Institute Black Museum. African-American Imprint on America - New York Times
The picture above is of a bag I got from shopping at Barnes & Noble during Black History Month.


They should put on that Cox Interactive series, Leave or Die, about Black people run out of towns or black towns being obliterated by racists. It was an awesome series.
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WHO'S NEXT TO GO MISSING?

This Bishop in Zimbabwe urged the country's brutal dictator Mugabe to leave the country. Zimbabwe Bishops Urge Mugabe to Leave - washingtonpost.com

The letter, titled "God Hears the Cries of the Oppressed," was the most critical pastoral message since Zimbabwe won independence from Britain in 1980 and Mugabe assumed leadership of the country for the first time.

This is a good, brave act. I think we can expect this man to go missing any day now.
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U.S. WARNS DARFUR... AGAIN


Whoever said headlines have to be objective? U.S. Sends (Another) Warning on Darfur - New York Times. That looks more like a blog heading than anything I'd see in NYTimes, but then again, who could phrase it any other way even remaining objective?

Someone who deals in foreign policy told me that America is never going to do anything about Darfur. The Administration fielded this issue when it became "hot" with the American people and the resounding response was "we don't care." He calls it African fatigue. We're sick of helping Africa - this was the response America gave them, so the administration will not send our military forces there.

What we will send are warnings; more warnings. This time, Bush is sending Condi's second in command, John Negroponte, to "deliver another strong message to the Sudanese government about the killings." "Or what?" is what the Sudan is asking. If they don't stop, what will we do? Maybe we'll actually send Condi with the next warning. "The administration has been trying to come up with a way to make good on repeated threats that the United States will hold President Omar Hassan al-Bashir accountable for the violence in Darfur."

As a kid, my father would give me several warnings when I acted up. "Don't make me get in your back pocket," was his way of saying I was going to a slap on the fanny if I didn't stop. He would say it over and over again, but he never did it. And even though this man was 6 '2' and all-powerful, I would stop what I was doing when I was bored doing it. When do you think the Sudanese will get bored? They've killed 200,000 and have displaced more than 2.5 million. Seems to me that they aren't anywhere near bored.
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DIRECTOR DEFENDS SLAVE FILM


Great Britain has the sense to abolish slavery well before we did. 2007 marks the 200th anniversary of the legislation that made slavery against the law. And they didn't even have to kill each other to make it happen. That doesn't mean it wasn't a struggle. A new movie, "Amazing Grace"depicts one Englishman's struggle to get this legislation passed and people are upset about it. They're upset because the director choose to make the movie from the perspective of just that one white Englishman. They accuse the director of "writing blacks out of history." When did Al Sharpton move to Great Britain?

First, it is impossible to write blacks out of history in a movie about abolishing slavery! Second, there is a black character in the movie who plays the role of Olaudah Equiano portraying his part in the struggle. Third, who would have the nerve to suggest this director has no right to his own creative license? If he choose to tell the story only from the perspective of an 11-year old English girl from Rottingham, it would be his right. Director defends new slave trade film - Yahoo! News

From my perspective, this is different from the Hispanics who are upset that Ken Burns left them out of his most recent documentary on WWII. This is not a film or one man's interpretation of a time in history. It's supposed to be a factual account of the war and Burns does mention the role of other races including blacks and Japanese-Americans.
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CHALLENGING CHINA



The U.S. - China relationship is a delicate one. When Clinton gave them "favored nation" status, people were outraged because he excluded all the human rights requirements that come with such status. Clinton did this reluctantly because he saw how incredibly fast China was advancing and felt the country would be easier to control if it was at least within the fold. When China joined the WTO, this again seemed like many make a business decision at the cost of human rights.

I'm very conflicted by this. I'm not naive. I know that business is business and there are a 7 trillion customers in China. But aren't we sending a message that an easy buck means more than what we're supposed to be losing American lives for in Iraq? I can accept that we don't have much choice but to include China, but I wish we would press harder on this country to do better on human rights. China has made progress in terms of property rights, but it is still far behind any other country with "favored nation" status. You can imagine how many Chinese are hoping we can use our influence in their favor. Although after seeing Iraq, maybe they'd rather we didn't bother.

I was glad to see a headline that said the U.S. was suing China through the WTO, but a little bummed when I read further and found out it was only over pirated movies and books. Bloomberg.com: U.S. Plans WTO Case Against China on Movies, Books. It was a little encouraging to see that they are also suing over the fact that China restricts foreign books.

"For years, President Bush has avoided confronting Beijing with sanctions or legal challenges to its trade practices, preferring to use diplomacy to press China to bring down its trade deficit with the United States, now at $232 billion. But these days, the conciliatory approach looks as if it is being reconsidered, if not discarded."

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DEVAL PATRICK & BILL CLINTON ARE BFFs

4.13.2007


You know how someone can do something, something small, but it means a lot and will make you like them even when they don't deserve it? Bill Clinton was perfect at that. I think it was some time around 1993 when I was at my sister's hairdresser with her. I was a bum, home for the summer without a job, so I hung out with my sister, Noreen, who was a stay-at-home mom at the time. Her hairdresser, Barbie (yes that was her name) had just lost her father-in-law. He was a semi-famous saxophonist(is that a word?) and had played all over the country.

Bill Clinton was a fan. So we're all just hanging out in the salon in Barbie's basement when a call comes through. Someone tells her that the President wants to speak to her husband. Barbie laughed and was like, "Quit playing. Who is this?" The guy finally convinced her that he really worked for the president and he wanted to give his condolences to her husband over the death of his father. Finally her husband got on the phone and the president came on and told him that he'd seen his father two times when he was traveling through Arkansas and that he was a big fan and he was sorry for his loss. To this day, you can't say nothing bad about Bubba in front of Barbie.

That is a long way of getting around to this article about Bubba making a call out of the blue to Deval Patrick, the most powerful governor in America, telling him to keep his head up through the controversy he's going through. He's going through a few of them right now. Bubba’s pep talk: Patrick weathers crisis with call from Clinton - BostonHerald.com

It's all in the details. Little things mean everything. The caption said that this pic is when Clinton was on the campaign trail with Deval, but it looks totally photoshopped to me.
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THE IMUS SNOWBALL


This snowball is taking down a lot of people before it rolls out of the spotlight. Imus of course is number one, plus his group of cronies that only had a job because he had a job. Imus was also a primary resource for his wife's environmental causes, the Imus Ranch line of products, the Autistic Foundation which Imus heavily promoted. He had several pet causes that he wove into his show on a daily basis.

But from a political standpoint, it's Democrats who really lose with Imus off the air. John McCain and Rick Santorum were regulars, but most of the politicians that came on the show were Democrats. Democratic politicians lose a soapbox with Imus - Los Angeles Times
Add to it NJ Governor Corzine is in critical condition from a car accident he had while on the way to this apology ceremony between Imus and the team.

Worst of all, I heard on the radio this morning that the Rutgers basketball team is now getting death threats. They don't even feel safe on campus. And they didn't do anything. Bigots are too stupid to realize that.

So far, the only people who have benefited from this is Al Sharpton. Whether or not he uses to force a change in the music industry will determined whether it benefits anyone else, but at this point I don't see anything that has changed.
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BABIES CAUSE STRESS & COST MONEY


That headline is stating the obvious, but sometimes you can lose track of it. Whenever I see a little face like this one, I get those maternal pangs. I love babies. Sometimes when I see them on the street, I want to grab it and run. I would love to have a big, fat, healthy baby with fat cheeks like this one. Perfect for kissing. To experience that unconditional love is really a blessing. So I get this urge and ask to have two or three of my 10 nieces and nephews for a weekend just to get it out of my system.

It always starts well. I'm being careful, trying to stimulate their minds, giving them each individual attention and make sure they're having fun but staying safe. Checking so everyone has their seat belt on, changing the station if an inappropriate song comes on the radio and making healthy sandwiches instead of picking up McDonalds. But by the time Sunday night comes around, my nerves are so shot that my left eye is twitching and I'm out something like $5000.00. My maternal urge surprisingly disappears. I know that you can't be a real parent over one weekend and over time you get used to the challenges of parenting, but it's just always an interesting experience for me. Breeding isn't for everyone.
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ANOTHER MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR DONATION


This has been my "I love rich people" week. Here's yet another billionaire donating a huge amount of money to a University. The Batten family is very big in the media world. One of the programs I run was named after James K. Batten because of the family's commitment to diversity in the industry. Frank Batten Sr has donated $100 million to the University of Virginia, the most the school has ever gotten from one donor. The money is meant to build a school of leadership and public policy. He previously donated $60 million to the UVA Business School. U-Va. Receives Largest Gift in School History - washingtonpost.com
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MISCENGENATION UPDATE


This swirling has gotten out of control! Interracial Marriages Surge Across U.S. Loving v. Virginia has opened a can of worms. Looks like that browning of America so many people fear is gonna happen whether you keep immigrants out or not. I'm not sure how it happened, but I noticed last year that a lot of my girlfriends are now dating (one engaged) to white men. This happened right under my nose! How insulting! Just kidding. Honestly, it's nice to read about this today after all the negative racial conversations that have been going on recently. As long as love is stronger than hate, there is hope. I'm going to send this article to my cousin's husband who hates interracial couples and told my sister not to bring her white husband to his wedding even though my sister was the matron on honor. Total loser.

One of the most popular posts that I've written in the last few months was Interracial - The Remix, a follow up to my post about George Lucas dating Mellody Hobson. My friend, who is dating a white guy, sent me a picture of George Lucas and Troy Beyer from a few years ago. She's a regular visitor to a site that focuses on black female/white male interracial relationships. I listed all the famous couples (with links to their pictures) in the post and people go crazy looking for it. Who would have known that Stone Phillips was married to a sister?When I check the outlinks from that post, people seem to be most interested in the one dude from Grey's Anatomy (don't know his name) and his wife. People have actually emailed me pictures of all 4 of their biracial children. I really didn't ask for it, but whatevs.
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NO HIV POSITIVE IMMIGRANTS


Australia recently enacted laws that double the time you have to be in the country to acquire citizenship. Now the Prime Minister says that people who are HIV-positive shouldn't be allowed to immigrate and he is looking into how they can legislate that. My Way News - Howard: No HIV-Positive Immigrants. I was shocked until I found out we do the same thing:

"Many countries, including the United States, impose restrictions on immigration and visa approvals for people with HIV, though there are often exceptions in special cases."

I understood the intention behind these types of laws, but it's still punishing someone because of an illness. Can we say, "you don't get the American dream because you have a disease?"
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SHE'S NAMING NAMES


This woman, called the D.C. Madam now, is a brave chick. She's starting to name names. If they aren't going to make her disappear, they better give her what she wants before she gives another name. I'm a little disappointed that she picked this guy as her first victim. She should have come out with someone huge and then say nothing. Powerful men all over the District will be rocking back and forth on the floor in the back of their closet.
In her motion to reconsider appointment of counsel, Palfrey named Harlan K. Ullman as "one of the regular customers" of the business. Ullman is one of the leading theorists behind the "shock and awe" military strategy that was associated with the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

'D.C. madam' names a purported customer - CNN.com

He recently wrote this article, Divided 'they' fall - The Washington Times, about the lost cause of Iraq & Afghanistan.
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ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION UPDATE

4.12.2007

I know you want to call me a hypocrite or two-faced, but I don't care. As important as it is to handle the problem of illegal immigration, I'm concerned about all these raids inside people's homes. At a workplace, I don't care, but a home...that has to bother you a little, right? I'm not showing compassion for breaking the law, but there is human dignity to protect. And there are innocent children in these homes and they are being scared out of their minds. Remember Elian in the closet screaming? I really think we should focus on securing the border first and then figure out a way to get illegals to go back home that doesn't turn us into some Communist Gestapo come-get-you-in-the-middle-of-the-night country. If we enact AND ACTUALLY ENFORCE legislation that prevents them from getting jobs, renting apartments/homes and taking advantage of benefits other than medical care, many will leave. My fear is that all these private home raids are going to start making illegal immigrants into victims; which they are not. U.S. Raid on an Immigrant Household Deepens Anger and Mistrust - New York Times

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You all know that I am pro-police and anti-illegal immigration. I have family on the force back home in Chicago and although there are some bad apples, they are out there fighting the worst of the worst. However, with L.A. cops, how can I say it....SUSPECT. They brought it on themselves. I never assume with the L.A. police. Maybe I watch to much of The Shield. L.A. Police Sued Over Immigrant Policy.

Here the police are wrong and right. Anti-illegal immigration advocates are suing them over their policy not to do anything about a drug suspect with illegal status. Cops just treat them like any other drug loser. Advocates want them to be forced to inform federal immigration officials that they have an illegal. However, it is police policy that they can't ask someone their citizenship status. The one exception is if a suspect is a gang member who has been previously deported or if a suspect is arrested for a felony or multiple misdemeanors.

First, the rule is stupid. Get rid of it. The police are in the crime fighting business and we need everyone working together on this. Second, don't have them do this until they are trained by ICE. There are procedures to follow and if cops can include some of those procedures when they believe their suspect is illegal, they'll become part of the solution. No, cops are not immigration officials, but they all have to work together if anything will get done.


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We're in for another Day Without An Immigrant. Yes, it's been a year since our first. My only problem with this is that they are again trying to put legal and illegal immigrants in the same boat. I brought a necklace, you stole a necklace or you brought a necklace using the credit card of the person's whose identity you stole. Either way, we both have necklaces so I guess we're the same! Immigration Activists Call for Boycott. Regarding last year's post asking what you think about 1 Day Without An Immigrant, the first comment was "It's a Start." No need to get ugly people.


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Politico reminds us that Republicans aren't the only ones wussing out on the problem of illegal immigration. Democrats have plenty to be ashamed of as well. Dems Face Immigration Hurdle, Too - Politico.com. However, it appears that Senator Clinton is the only one who has a plan.

"Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) has a long answer when it comes to immigration -- "We've gotta do five things simultaneously," she said in Burlington during a swing through Iowa last week. But for Iowa Democrats, there are two big applause lines.In the down-and-out river town of Waterloo, the crowd cheered Clinton when she promised to crack down on businesses that employ illegal immigrants. But the loudest, quickest applause came for another line: "You're going to have to learn English."

She sounds just like Bill with that, "We've gotta do five things simultaneously." He would always give a preview of all his points and then start counting down from 1 with his finger. You got all excited because it was like, "The President is gonna solve this mess. He knows what he's doing!" And damn if every point he said didn't seem like genius at the time. But then reality set in. He was an idealistic man, which I liked about him.

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Oh, but wait! Bush says that his policies (what policies?) are working and this is the reason why illegal immigration has dropped. I suspect some cooking of the books here. I don't doubt that illegal immigration has gone down some. We've upped the border patrol, we've been sending those caught for crimes back. But it's just a drop in the bucket. And don't forget the fence. You know that fence that is now going to be much shorter than it was originally. The same fence that Mexico was pissed at because part of it was in Mexican territory. Yeah, that fence. Bush Ties Drop in Illegal Immigration to His Policies - New York Times.



"In the last six months, the White House said, Border Patrol reports showed that apprehensions of illegal immigrants along the Mexican border fell by 30 percent, to 418,184, from 594,142 in the comparable period a year earlier. In the Yuma sector, which spans parts of Arizona and California, apprehensions fell by 68 percent, to 25,217, from 79,131 in the comparable period a year earlier."

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More back and forth between the White House & Congress on Immigration. Bush avoids endorsing GOP stance on aliens -The Washington Times. What's the point? Just admit you're too scared to do something and let the states handle their own business. It will be much messier that way, but at least something will start to get done. More power-point presentations going back and forth. This country will be renamed Northern Mexico before anything gets done. "The White House's PowerPoint presentation to key Republican senators two weeks ago shook the immigration debate. It seemed to indicate that the administration was taking a much harder line toward illegal aliens by proposing huge fines, requirements that aliens return home briefly and a much longer path to citizenship. It also suggested that future foreign workers not be allowed to bring their families or have a path to citizenship."

President Bush outlined the latest version of his plan to overhaul the nation's immigration laws Monday, renewing his support for a guest-worker program for those with low skills and issuing a vague call for a resolution of the legal status of the estimated 12 million undocumented workers in the country.Bush Makes Push To Resolve Status Of Illegal Workers - washingtonpost.com

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Business owners in Santa Ana are spending $4.5 million on a campaign persuading the city's immigrants, legal and illegal, to learn English so they can employ them and pay them much, much less than they would if they hired already-speaking-English people. Ads in Calif city urge immigrants to learn English - Reuters.com. "The campaign in Santa Ana, where more than three-quarters of residents are Hispanic and less than 15 percent speak English at home, offers free language classes at a community college and take-home study kits."
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IMUS TAKES A DIG AT HAROLD FORD JR


I'll admit. I'm a big, fat liar. After everyone and their mom flooded my site over my "White Men Have To Respect Black Women, But Black Men Don't?" post, I promised to stay out of this. I think this is my 5th Imus-related post since saying that, so I'm a liar. Sue Me.

The DRUDGE REPORT has more on Imus complaining about not complaining this morning. He has added a new person to his "I thought you had my back" hit list; Harold Ford. Here is some of what he said about Junior:

"Harold Ford, Jr. has been disgraceful in his lack of support. I endured death threats to endorse him...It's unfortunate that he has no courage. I'm not surprised by any of this. I'm not surprised at the hypocrisy of Al Sharpton, of Jesse Jackson or any of these people. But you can't whine about it."

"My position on all of this is not whining about the hideously hypocritical coverage from the newspapers -- from everybody -- or the lack of support, say, from people like Harold Ford, Jr. who I had my life threatened over supporting and all these kind of things."

Harold was a favorite of Imus, but they've been trying to call him for days and no call back. Hmmmm. Maybe he's too busy working those 515 different jobs he has.

Imus continues to use phrases like "you people" and "these people." Just handing it to them on a platter.

He wants Al Sharpton to apologize to the Duke Lacrosse players. He spent more time talking about how good a person he really is, which I don't think is the right move in this situation. I think it only makes you look more fake after bringing up your ranch for sick kids 100 million times. He says he apologized to some black woman whose son had spent time at her ranch and apologize to her. She said she accepted.

He continues to say that context does matter. I agree, but he still hasn't explained what exactly the joke was in that exchange. I didn't see it. Unless you think just calling black women nappy-headed hos is a joke in itself.

He calls the media hypocritical and tells people to get over this thing. In the end, he'll probably get a show on Sirius and make even more money than he is now. I used to like his show although I didn't watch it every day, but I sincerely doubt anything he ever does will be as good as he's done before because he's been too wounded.
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CHRISTIANS DIVORCE MORE THAN ATHEISTS


Well, I'm not necessarily surprised that this result comes from a study on divorce rates for various faith groups. Christians get divorced more often than Atheists. U.S. divorce rates: for various faith groups, age groups and geographical areas.

Maybe atheists stay married because they know no one else will want them. LOL. Just kidding. Don't sick the pagans on me. I'm wondering if the reason their marriages last longer is because they don't feel restricted by the religious morality of fidelity? Or maybe they are more at peace because they don't have the religious guilt that many of us do. If you don't fear displeasing God, you don't really have to worry about much. Not that this makes a difference in people who do believe in God. The #1 reason for divorce is money and infidelity is #2. Who knows? I just like any excuse to show this pic.
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OBAMA SPEAKS ON IMUS


Some media outlets were reporting that blacks were disappointed with Senator Obama for not chiming in on the Imus mess. Well, he finally did and he said Imus should be fired. He spoke of his daughters, two beautiful black girls, and you can understand how he would be angry that someone would speak of them this way and others would think it was no big deal. He said its up to NBC to decide what to do, but said, "He wouldn't be working for me." ABC News: Obama: Fire Imus
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NAMING THE WOMAN IN THE DUKE CASE


There has been a debate back and forth on whether or not they should expose the name of the woman who falsely accused the Duke Lacrosse players of rape. Many websites and blogs partial to the Duke players have been naming her from the beginning and showing her picture. After the case completely fell apart, a lot more even-handed sites began to name her as well. But the mainstream press has continued to call her either "the alleged victim" or "the accuser."

John Podhoretz at NYPost says we should shout her names to the rooftop and make her feel ashamed for what she's done. LET THE LIAR BE NAMED & SHAMED - New York Post Online Edition. How do you feel about that? This woman lied and made life a living hell for these boys and their families. What she began created a tension so thick on campus that some students felt unsafe. No, those boys were not innocent angels. They have a history of bad behavior, so does the team and to rent hookers for a party is how you set yourself up for garbage like this. Good boys don't shout the N-word loud enough that neighbors and people on the street can hear them. People who do that are trash as far as I'm concerned. But what was the worst harm here?

Women are raped every day and she has made it a little easier for people to choose not to believe a woman if believing her makes them too uncomfortable. They will point back to this case and say, "remember you believed her at first, too." This will be especially so if the woman is employed in a less than respectable job like a stripper.

Now that this has come to an end, all those who were on the side of the boys yelling about reverse racism feel vindicated whether they have a right to or not. Even when it became clear this was a dead case, you heard from some blacks who didn't care. They wanted the boys to pay for all those white men who got away with this thing in the past. And did you read some of the comments by people supporting the Duke players on the web? The KKK couldn't have written worse. This whole circus ceased to be about justice a long, long time ago. But that's what happens with racial issues. Blacks and whites have so much anger and resentment for each other, that they can't conceal their racism and speak without reason or logic.

And she started it with one call to the police most likely out of anger because the boys called her the N-word. She wanted them to pay and she didn't care that she was making this harder for women. She probably never imagined it would blow up like this, but that doesn't make it any more or less right.

So, is it time to put her out there and let everyone take a shot?
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IMUS FIGHTS BACK

I said I wouldn't blog about this anymore, but I promise this will be my last. A new angle has come up as a result of the Duke rape case resolution, so that's my excuse.

Sharpton has gotten his victory. He's gotten his big fish and even though many think its not fair, they won't mourn for Imus. Many people I talked to were on Imus' side until they heard the history of things he's said about black women.

So Imus is now on his last leg. All he has is CBS radio and they'll fire him sooner or later. He'll probably move on to SIRIUS or something like that. But he isn't going down without swinging. He is attacking Sharpton and wants to him to apologize to the Duke players who were recently exonerated in the rape case that made headlines for the longest. He knows that apology will never come, so it's not a bad move by Imus. It's too late to do anything for him, but bringing back memories of Tawana Brawley(sp?) can only hurt Sharpton. MediaBistro: IMUS FIGHTS BACK

My Imus Apologizes blew up on digg last week and this week its Michelle Malkin's posting of popular rap lyrics, in the same vein. Again, no excusing Imus, but this stuff is much, much worse. Michelle Malkin: Imus vs. the Billboard Hot Rap Tracks Chart(language warning)
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BLAIR BLAMES BLACK CULTURE FOR VIOLENCE


Lord in Heaven, will this ever stop? Tony Blair blames black culture in England for the violence in the black communities. He'll be vilified. They aren't as obsessively PC as the U.S. but he is the Prime Minister, not some radio DJ. I'm sure there was a better way to make this point, which is not invalid(although not complete), but again will be overshadowed by the racial implications. This is always the case. Someone makes a good point about how the culture adopted by the community relates to the violence, but they act as if it is "the" reason and ignore all the other factors that make it possible for a culture to influence one group of people more than another. Blair doesn't have much to lose. They already hate him in England anyway for siding with Bush on the war, so it will just be more of the same. At least its not happening here. Blair blames spate of murders on black culture The Guardian Guardian Unlimited
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THE BOYCOTT IS ON


This is a long time coming. After stories about the way U.S. News & World Report goes about ranking colleges began, schools have been speaking up. The lobbying for a spot at the top plays a bigger role than anyone who is assuming the list is based on real data might think. U.S. News continues to defend itself against the accusations. It appears we've come to an impasse. Dozens of schools have drawn their line in the sand and are refusing to fill out their U.S. News forms, so next year's info will be even less reliable than before.

"At the heart of the matter: A college degree is increasingly expensive, and students and parents want to make informed decisions. But educators worry that the rankings have made college a commodity, creating a false impression that schools can be easily compared and stressing out students who want only the "best" schools."

College presidents plan 'U.S. News' rankings boycott csmonitor.com
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A FEW GOOD GAMERS


The Army is facing several challenges. After extending the deployment time for thousands of soldiers, the morale challenge it faces will be substantial. Imagine you make it to 11 months alive. You're proud of yourself because you love your country and you've served it well. You're thinking of your wife, your kids, sitting on your back porch and going to a BBQ in just one month. Then you're told, uhm make that 4 more months.

This can't help with the recruiting effort either. So, they have to get more strategic and have decided the next best move is to recruit war gamers. Not the War Games global thermonuclear war type, but the Halo, Navy Seals and Counter Strike type. With a $2 million sponsorship deal with the Global Gaming League website, the Army will sponsor a "national gaming" area that will reach the sites 9.2 million players which mostly consist of 17-24 year old males. The Army's looking for a few good online gamers - USATODAY.com.

The way these guys play some of these games, you would think they could be Navy Seals. Of course, a fight in the Gulf will not pause so you can run down the street to get a Slurpee and that voice from out of nowhere will not remind you to "RELOAD. RELOAD."

The only gun game I've played was Jurassic Park at Dave & Busters. I hate guns, so I was reluctant at first. But about 5 minutes into it I was locking and loading like Sarah Connors in T2.

And if playing video games makes you qualified for the real thing, then I should become Ruler of the Entire Land because I have excelled at City Building Pharaoh and Cleopatra two times over.
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THE NRA & ACLU JOIN FORCES

4.11.2007


Someone once told me that Texas Democrats and Republicans aren't like Illinois Democrats and Republicans. In Illinois, the difference is quite apparent. In Texas, they're all Texans first, so they are pretty interchangeable. Maybe that explains how the National Rifle Association and the American Civil Liberties Union would work together on a cause involving a man's right to ride around with an unlicensed 357 Magnum.

Unusual Allies in a Legal Battle Over Texas Drivers’ Gun Rights - New York Times
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WHAT WOULD YOU DO WITH $200 MILLION?


Don't you just love rich people? Everyone always craps on them because they evade taxes and get away with stealing and killing people and all, but how many universities, hospitals, museums, parks andthe such would not be here if it weren't for sinfully rich people giving up hundreds of millions?

How many college scholarships, minority or otherwise, are from those people you probably call rich snobs? And if you haven't picked a college to attend yet, you must go to Columbia, because billionaire John Kluge just gave the school $400 million to help kids who can't pay Columbia's considerable tuition. This is one of the largest academic donations in American history. Gates just recently gave $120 million to D.C.-area high schools, but $400 million? That's a lot of aid. He's trying to show you up, Bill Gates. You have to double down now. I'll see your $400 mill and raise you $4 mill. I've never heard of this Mr. Kluge before, but even if he does evade taxes, steal and kill people, he's cool in my book. Columbia to Receive $400 Million for Student Aid - New York Times
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NATIONAL ISSUES ROUNDUP

The last place you want to make contraceptives too expensive to buy is a college campus. I mean, come on. $50 is serious, serious money for a college kid. Costly Contraceptives - New York Times. "On some college campuses, the price of brand-name contraceptives has risen from the neighborhood of $5 per month to $40 or even $50. Switching to a generic is an option in some cases, but it can still entail a 300 percent price increase. Generics often run at about $15 per month. Newer contraceptives, like the NuvaRing, which contains a very low hormone dose and does not require a daily action that is easily forgotten, are not yet available generically. Many students are priced out of the market."
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A very disturbing article on how insurance companies destroy people's lives. Are you prepared to pay $40K a year for your parent's nursing home? And those are the less expensive ones. When the choice is paying for your parent's care or your retirement, what will your choice be? Even when people plan properly, things could go wrong and you can't rely on insurance companies. With more and more elderly out there, insurance companies are doing everything they can to avoid having to fulfill the promises they made. Aged, Frail and Denied Care by Their Insurers - New York Times

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Global Warming is bad news for everyone, but of course the poor will be hit the hardest just like with everything else. The wealthiest nations are causing the most pollution, but they are also the ones who can afford to protect themselves from the consequences. While poor countries who only contribute minimally to global warming can't afford to protect themselves from its affect. Do countries that make all the pollution owe these countries the means by which to protect themselves? POOREST NATIONS WILL BEAR BRUNT AS WORLD WARMS - New York Times

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Cities all over the country, Dallas - Las Vegas - Orlando - Chelsea, are enacting legislation to limit what you can and can't give the homeless. Cities set limits on serving food to homeless people - USATODAY.com. When I was in college in Champaign-Urbana, there was a very big homeless problem. The homeless like being near college campuses, because the kids are more generous. We would always give the homeless our leftovers from the restaurants. We would donate what was leftover from the dorm meals as well.

The problem in these cities is that the charities feeding the homeless are doing this in high traffic areas and the presence of the homeless bothers the tourists and the local merchants say its hurting their businesses. "Cities are cracking down on charities that feed the homeless, adopting rules that restrict food giveaways to certain locations, require charities to get permits or limit the number of free meals they can provide."

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A writer for the conservative website Townhall.com shares her opinion on the reparations argument. She isn't impressed with the slavery apologies that seem to be the trend of late. For all those demanding apologies, she asks: One wonders, were it not for slavery, what would these agitators do? She believes these blacks, along with elite white liberals, are all profiting from this gambit. Townhall.com::How Black and White Elites Benefit from Slavery. I'm not agreeing with her because her intentions are suspect and you can read that between the lines. However, one would be a fool to believe that the people involved are not in this to get some money. They want the apologies and then they'll start asking for money because once you apologized, you admitted blame and once you agree you're to blame, you have to make up for it. The long term goal here is $$$, not the healing of any wounds.

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More men are saying their female or male bosses are sexually harassing them. I'm sure this has probably increased with the advancement of women in the workplace. Sexual harassment is about power and control and women are just as subject to its vices as men. Breitbart.com: More men report sexual harassment in US workplace. "Newly released data from the EEOC showed that 15.4 percent of the 12,025 charges of sexual harassment in fiscal year 2006 were filed by men, as opposed to 11.6 percent a decade ago."

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More signs of role reversal, but this one is a good thing. Can a stay at home dad be a man? To many people who are very entrenched in social roles, this is too hard to take. Men work, right? Women are the nurturers. There is a reason God gave us the baby, because he made within us a greater ability to take care. In my home, the message was clear. Dad is the protector, provider and disciplinarian. Mom is the nurturer and teacher. But things are different now. Men and women have evolved to a point where we can choose to be whatever we want. Equality has made better caregivers out of men and better providers out of women. Each family has to decide for itself what works. Whoever makes the most money and has the most future potential should be the provider. Of course this doesn't work if the other parent is just not a good nurturer. It has to work both ways, but if it allows one parent to be at home during those very first year, its worth it. I don't think it matters who. However, stay at home Dad means the same as stay at home Mom, so laundry, dishes, cleaning up and all that are including.
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LOCAL POLITICS ROUNDUP

Mexico
A NYTimes article on the abortion controversy in Mexico City, a very Catholic city. With liberal leaders in place, abortion may soon become legal. Abortion Plan in Mexico City Shakes a Heavily Catholic Land - New York Times. The Latin American trend in abortion legislation is mixed. Only in Cuba, Puerto Rico and Guyana can women have abortions for any reason during the first trimester. In Chile, Nicaragua and El Salvador, it is banned without exception. Others allow it only in cases of rape or the health of the mother.

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LOUISIANA

Uhm...I thought cockfighting was already illegal in this country. Cockfighting in Louisiana may be banned - Yahoo! News. They should get rid of it. It's a cruel thing to do to those animals. While they're at it, you might want to send them to New Orleans to help fight crime. They're pretty tough birds and NOLA needs all the help it can get.

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OHIO
The NAACP's new plan is agitation? Wasn't that the old plan that everyone has agreed doesn't work anymore?

"It will be, as Smitherman's friend, State Rep. Tyrone Yates, put it, the kind of organization that follows the advice of abolitionist and slave Frederick Douglass, given from his deathbed when a young man asked him what he should do with his life: Agitate. Agitate. Agitate."

This isn't in response to any one particular incident. Cincinnati has a whole list of racial problems and issues, so its not as if they won't have stuff to do. I'd just be surprised if making a pest of yourself is going to do much. The Enquirer - NAACP's new plan: Agitation

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LOUISIANA BY WAY OF D.C.


Dollar Bill Jefferson is never far from my mind. The recently re-elected but still might be indicted but I doubt it Congressman is still in court trying to say the Feds had no right to raid his office. The only reason other members of Congress are behind him is because they don't want their offices raided either. Lord only knows what they're stashing in those drawers. Feds defend raid on Jefferson's office


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VIRGINIA
In Hampton, VA the issue of being gay on black campuses is covered in this CNN article. Dissecting homosexuality in the black community requires time I just don't have, but I'm not surprised gay students at Hampton U are little less than impressed with their welcome. Most black people lean conservative on this issue. Gays struggle to find their voice at black colleges - CNN.com

"It's a tug-of-war that's emerging at other black schools, where students say outdated rules and homophobia block them from forming the gay campus voice common at majority white institutions. At Hampton, where rules govern everything from overnight guests to student dress, officials insist they don't discriminate against gays. They say they're simply enforcing the regulations on student groups, and there just isn't space for another one."

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CALIFORNIA
A housing project in San Francisco is known for its violence. So much so that one resident got the idea to create a website commemorating all who had died there. She's also using it to help her adult son get a job, because I guess her adult son doesn't want to do it herself? I'm not sure what that's about. My mom filled out all six of my undergrad applications for me, so I'll just shut up. She's also looking for health information. Webmd.com is my favorite place. Whatever. I'm just happy they got broadband in the hood.


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NEW YORK
Harlem is getting rich and snotty and pushing the working class residents out. Now they want to convert some public schools to private academies that many residents can't afford. Blame Bill Clinton!!!


Harlem has changed. The last time I was in Harlem was 2003 and I have to honest. I think I saw more white people than black people. I thought I was in the wrong neighborhood. My one New York friend, Cara, lives in a tony renovated brownstone. She is black and most of her neighbors are black. They all have advanced degrees, many from Ivy League universities. They all drive BMWs and LEXUS and many of the buildings have doormen but she says you can still pass cute little black girls in barrettes jumping double dutch every now and then.

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DC
Something happened at Howard University regarding black students and Jews and it sparked a controversy that leads some to believe there is less friction between blacks and Jews than before. They still don't have anything to do with each other, but they don't hate each other. Its just that they grew apart. You know, the same reason your parents got divorced. Howard Vote On Divestiture Is Notable for Lack of Outcry - washingtonpost.com
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WHAT TO DO WHEN YOUR BOSS SEEMS UNBALANCED


You probably haven't heard the name Rachel Paulose, but she's the U.S. Attorney in Minneapolis and a lot of people are talking about her and the fact that her staff is defecting faster than Katherine Harris' staff on Capitol Hill did last year. They aren't quitting, they are voluntarily giving up their management roles in protest of her behavior, which they believe to be unprofessional and extreme. Depending on what article you read, she's uber-religious and wants everyone to know it. She's also accused of being over-aggressive, but women managers get that label all the time. Deputies to a U.S. Attorney Step Down - New York Times

"Their decisions to give up their managerial roles signaled a rebellion of sorts to Ms. Paulose. At 34, she is the first woman in the state’s history to hold the job as United States attorney, and she is also the first person of South Asian descent in the country to be confirmed in that position. "

Since this controversy blew up, she has apologized for her behavior and hopefully things will change. I'm sure everyone wishes they could use the media to make their boss act like they have some sense.

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EXTENDED TOURS FOR SOLDIERS


Is this the answer? ABC News: EXCLUSIVE: Pentagon Considers Extended Tours for All Soldiers. The surge doesn't seem to be making a difference, so keeping these men there longer than they were told they would be is the next step. If Pentagon decides to go this route, they better figure out how they are going to make up for the morale dip that can be very dangerous. Those men and women want to serve their country and they are proud, as they should be. But they also want to come home when they were told they would be able to.

Has this war hit home for you? We are all disgusted when we hear the week's worth of 18 year olds who died in Iraq. It's so difficult to think of American men and women dying this way, but not seeing anything change. These are sons, daughters, mommies, daddies, brothers, sisters. These are members of a family that loses a part of themselves when one member dies. For all these 3,000+ there are more thousands who mourn more than we do.

A little over a month ago, I met someone through one of the programs I run. She informed me that her son was in Iraq and she'd been trying to reach him. She was getting worried and she wanted me to know that she couldn't turn off her cell phone like we requested because if he called she would have to take it. Later in the afternoon, he called and she talked to him for a good while.

Her son was in Iraq for a 2nd tour. It was voluntary. He was a Sergeant and he said he didn't want his guys to have to adjust to a new leader. They needed him. So he went back. She recently called me to tell me he had been killed. He was 24 and he was her youngest child; her baby. I felt empty for the rest of the day. I have never laid eyes on this kid and I barely knew the woman outside of the program that she was calling to take a leave of absence from. Still, I felt sick to stomach about it and its nothing compared to what his friends and family are feeling. 24 years old.
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IS YOUR DAUGHTER AN ALPHA GIRL?


We've all heard about Alpha Males. I remember reading an article several years ago on President Clinton where the writer matched his characteristics with those of an Alpha Male and believed because of this people will follow him no matter what and women will want him no matter what. He gives off "I'm in charge." The writer traced his biography and showed examples of how Clinton, even though he was usually the poorest of his social circle, was always in charge; always the leader.

We don't hear a lot about Alpha Females and even less about Alpha Girls. WAPO's On Parenting Blog talks about how we are living in the age of the most powerful 17 year old girls ever. Alpha Girls - On Balance.

"The girls are all "high-achieving, ambitious and confident," according to reporter Sara Rimer. They study Latin, are fluent in Spanish, have three years of varsity track, basketball, soccer, or another impressive sport under the belts around their slim waists. The pictures show them to be beautiful, thin, and athletic in addition to being articulate brainiacs."

I see a lot of this in my nieces Erin and Elle. Extremely overachieving, very confident and eager to meet a challenge while still being very girly. They feel no need to act helpless or silly in order to attract boys. I don't think they would be this way without the parenting and encouragement they get. So although girls are stronger than ever, there are still a lot of 17 year old girls who are more vulnerable than ever. They're living in poverty, probably have a child, don't know their father and get very little encouragement to go conquer the world. Let's not forget them.
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GLOBAL WARMING


I don't know anything about Sheryl Crow except she dated Lance Armstrong and sings songs. But I absolutely agree with her opinion on the earth. United Press International: Sheryl Crow tours to fight global warming.

This planet is a living being that was here billions of years before us and will be here billions of years after us if we end up killing ourselves. There is nothing we can do to compete with this earth. With all our riches, brilliance and technology, all she has to do is blow lightly or do a littel shake and we are utterly devastated. This is why we are so entranced by her. When really bad weather hits, its all we can talk about. It reminds us of how we are just renters here. We own nothing. If you're watching the Discovery Channel "PLANET" series right now it only reinforces how incredible this earth really is.

She helps us eat, live, provides us with cures for illnesses and allows us to enjoy her beauty, but that doesn't mean she has any regard for us. No matter what we do to harm her, we only harm ourselves. And if we continue to threaten her, she'll fight back. Because our actions may make it impossible for us to live here, but after we've destroyed ourselves, she'll just heal herself. She doesn't need us. We need her and we have to start acting like we know that.

On that note, the 2007 Chevy Equinox Hybrid was recalled and might not come back out until 2008. Hybrids are expensive, but you get good tax breaks and you know you're doing the right thing. HybridCars.com
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OBAMA'S IMUS OPINION


This Boston Globe article is talking about the Imus controversy and how some blacks are concerned that he is not making a statement. Obama's silence on Imus alarms some blacks - The Boston Globe. Most people I talk to of every race just want to stop hearing about this controversy. Enough has been said and the market is going to have the last word.

McCain and Giuliani have both said they would go back on the show. Most presidential candidates have not said a word about this. I don't blame them. Who wants to get involved in the mess this thing has become? I do agree that Obama's refusal to make a statement might hurt him. Not with me. I don't believe in putting pressure on someone to do something just because of their skin color. But for those who want to question his blackness or decide whether they are in his court instead of Clintons, they might be upset. Reading this article, it seems like their complaints are childish, but that doesn't mean they won't carry weight in the primaries.

"The episode is the first test of how Obama -- who is of mixed-race background -- is handling the contentious issue of race in his presidential campaign. Even as polls have shown other Democrats attracting a large share of the black vote, Obama has steered clear of the kind of activism symbolized by Sharpton and the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who were both highly visible in the Imus episode but whose aggressiveness on race issues has alienated some white voters in the past."
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NETFLIX IS TRYING TO STICK IT TO ME

4.10.2007


Remember when I posted about how, since I started law school, I have no life and I end up keeping my 3 Netflix DVDs for an average of two months before I watch them. I used to go through them overnight and ship them back and go through 10 DVDs in one month. But now, I'm basically paying $40 to rent 3 DVDs. I can't cancel it. I've spent too much time building up my Queue. There are about 90 DVDs on there. I cannot lose my queue.


Usually when I send a DVD back, I get another one in two days. But lately, I've been renting more movies. Usually I rent TV series, which have 4-6 hours on one DVD so it takes a year and half to finish one. But movies are quick. Twice in a row, I've sent all three back really quick and all of the sudden it's taking longer than 2 days.
They're trying to stick it to me. It doesn't matter. Finals are coming up, so I won't even turn a TV on until May 12. I'm just saying I know what they're doing.
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OBAMA POST

Does anyone know how I can get Spellcheck to stop telling me I'm spelling Obama wrong?

This dude offers his two cents on the issue of race with Obama and all that foolishness about whether or not he is black. American Chronicle: Barack Obama: Race versus Substance

"But is this really important? We will never be able to move away from judgments based on skin color as long as people insist on voicing such ridiculous questions. Yes it is an accomplishment that for the first time an African-American is a serious contender for the Presidency. But the color of his skin should not matter beyond that achievement. What should matter is what Obama believes, and what qualifications he possesses that would make us comfortable entrusting to him the leadership of the most powerful nation on Earth."

He goes on to quote Vibe magazine, which also says forget his race, will he make a good president? He says no. Obama is all about romance, but not real love.

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Obama joined the list of Democratic candidates that are refusing to participate in the CBC sponsored debates on FOX News. FOX News needs to offer an olive branch of some kind. Candidates don't need the news stations as much as they used to because of the Internet. If they don't get Hillary, Edwards & Obama at a debate, who is gonna come? Even the building janitors will skip that one. TheHill.com - Activist group lauds Obama for skipping Fox debate

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The Senator from Illinois might get in trouble because this pic of him talking to his chief political advisor, Axelrod, in his Senate office is against the law, if they were talking about the campaign. Oops. DRUDGE REPORT FLASH 2007®: Obama Photo Causes Controversy


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Another writer asks if its Obama's charisma that got him the $25 mill and not his actual stand on the issues? Is his charisma bringing in the cash? :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES. I'd think that anyone who bothered to look past all the rose petals and rainbows, would see he's a pragmatic man that leans very much to the left. He isn't far left wing because that would be insane. His ideas are probably more liberal than most of the people who sent him $$$. His ideas are certainly more liberal than most of the people who voted for him for Senator. People are just hoping this guy is "the guy." They want politics to mean something. They want what the country had when JFK was prez. They want to feel young and they want to be able to say they aren't racist, "otherwise why would I vote for Obama?"

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This is how rumors get started. If I had standards, I would not mention it, but...so here it is. Someone starting a rumor that Obama went to Libya about ten years ago and hung out with Louis Farrakhan. This is probably an attempt to link him to Islam and also someone who is labeled anti-Semitic. Anything....anything to make the people stop loving him. It wasn't true. His pastor is the one who took the trip, but I'm sure this was started by the same guy that said Obama went to a terrorist school in Indonesia, which turned out to be untrue as well. He's in his basement now trying to come up with the best way to plant a "meth addict" rumor on Obama now. Obama report is debunked Chicago Tribune

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More on The Distinguished Gentleman (I'm getting tired of writing Obama) taking money in Hillary's back yard. I'm sure she is not amused. Obama returning to N.Y. gold mine - Nation / World - NY Daily News

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Obama also moved his HQ to a nice building in Chicago, my hometown. I miss Chicago so much. Many of his staff are moving down there and they're so exciting. Just wait until November comes and they will be crying themsleves to sleep every night with two pairs of sweats on under 3 electric blankets. I predict massive turnover around that time. Obama's new HQ has room to move :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES

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On David Letterman, Obama said he wasn't interested in the VP slot. That's what John Edwards said in 2004. Obama is the only one of the top 3 that could get the VP slot. Edwards can't accept it again and Hillary is not trying to hear that mess. Obama would help seal the deal for whoever got the ticket. Political Radar: Obama on Letterman
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ENTERTAINMENT POST



I will admit that I'm not the biggest fan of the Sopranos. I like the show, but it's not this amazing display of writing and acting that people keep saying. Maybe it's just me. So I'm not as excited as everyone else that the (INSERT NUMBER HERE BECAUSE YOUR GUESS IS AS GOOD AS MINE) season has started. This show has been on since I was a child, right? It comes on every 3 years. Exactly how long does it take to make a short series? Well at least its over and will remain on my DVR for another 3 years before I watch it.

The Shield is a show I like, I really like. I just got into last year with the Season One DVD.
'The Shield' starts its sixth season tonight - Los Angeles Times. I thought I would hate it, but it grew on me right away. So, although this season seemed to take 2 years to start, I'm glad it has. And I'm still trying to figure out how can get this, ShieldThemeSong , as my ringtone.

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Don't act like you don't know who Kid N Play is. As I have closely followed their careers post "non-violent, suburban black hip hop sensation," and have been disappointed in Plays inability to stay in the game to the level of Kid. Kid's level is very low, but at least he's trying. Now, he might even get his talk show. Maybe Play can be his sidekick. It is highly unlikely that I will watch this, but I wanted to post it because whenever I see Kid, he reminds me of Harold Ford, Jr. Kid, Not Play, May Get Talk Show - Broadcasting & Cable.

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I'm a couple weeks behind on 24, but I hope this headline doesn't mean that President Palmer Nano has been killed. iF Magazine: DB Woodside Finds The Presidency Can Be Killer on 24. I don't like Wayne Palmer. Not just because he pales horribly in comparison to President David Palmer who was supposed to be my baby's daddy before they had him SHOT IN THE NECK (sorry, I'm still salty over this), but because his character is so monotone and always looks like he was just told he can't have any desert. He's an attractive guy, but he's not doing it for me.

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Spike Lee won awards for his HBO special, When the Levees Broke, about the people of New Orleans after Katrina. There was some talk with NBC about creating a kind of reality show, but that was squashed. FishbowlNY: Spike, HBO To Talk Levees Sequel

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USA Today is turning 25 this year. To celebrate, they are doing a lot of Top 25 lists. This week, they select the 25 Books in the last 25 years. I'm very happy to see Beloved on there. I do love that book. On this list, these are the books I have read:

Beloved
DiVinci Code
Left Behind
Waiting To Exhale

Not a good showing on my part, but I'm not ever going to read a Harry Potter novel, which is number one.

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Speaking of Waiting To Exhale, Terry McMillan's already ugly divorce has a sequel. Second Act - Now she's suing him. Author McMillan sues ex-husband for smearing reputation www.azstarnet.com ®
"The defendants conspired and formed a plan to threaten to humiliate and embarrass Terry McMillan," the lawsuit said, "and violate her privacy and place her in harm's way, and threatened to damage her professional and personal standing in an attempt to extort monies from her."

He totally wronged her and benefited a great deal from being married to her. If he wanted to come out, he can do it. But he shouldn't have tried to smear her name to make himself less the bad guy. Her problem is that the only thing most people remember from this divorce is that she called him a "fag," so I'm not sure how well this will go for her.

Also, this fool doesn't have .40cents, let alone $40 million. She'll waste more in legal fees than he could ever give her if he worked for the rest of his life. Most importantly, I have to say that when the movie, How Stella Got Her Groove Back, which was based on how they met, I was in looooooooooove with Taye Diggs. The dark skin, the accent just killed. I expected so much more from him and he's only disappointed.
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MY INTERNAL CONFLICTS


I am someone who loves to overachieve, but hates getting attention for it. Where does that come from? I'll always take on more than everyone says I should and do better than people expected, but squirm when they want to congratulate me for it. It is enough for me to know that they know I did well, but I guess I don't like being the center of attention. Believe it or not, I'm an introvert. Almost all writers are. I like to sit back and observe, think.

So when a fellow blogger told me that my blog made NY Daily News "Best of the Political Blogs" list for the day, I laughed nervously. "How cool," I said while inside I was saying, "Damn, I've been found out." It took me two hours before I would go check for myself. Believe it or not, they've quoted me on two different occasions.
E-opinions: The best of the political blogs - Opinions - NY Daily News
E-opinion: The best of the political blogs - Opinions - NY Daily News

Then I went to my site meter this morning and almost passed out. This is what I saw:

VISITS
Total 112,362
Average Per Day 966
Average Visit Length 0:32
Last Hour 2,692
Today 16,057
This Week 6,762

This is unacceptable. I usually average between 250-300 Visits a day. Honestly, these posts are just me talking mess. I am not an authority on anything, but my own opinion which can vary day to day depending on whether or not I've eaten breakfast. If a lot of people actually start coming here, I will feel pressure to actually do some research and know what I'm talking about. I really don't have the time for that. Geez, I barely have time to do SpellCheck. So, from this moment on, there will be no Imus/Sharpton talk.
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BLOGGERS HAVE STANDARDS?


This NY Times article addresses the issue of bloggers who have created standards for conduct and want to spread the guidelines among the community. A Call for Manners in the World of Nasty Blogs - New York Times.

Nobody reads my blog, so I don't have to worry about this. What I read on many blogs is shocking, but most of it is funny. As far as language is, I think it's all up to the blogger. If someone uses language that is too personal or goes too far, I just don't go back. Most bloggers are people writing for their friends. That more people come to the blog is a reinforcement that they like that style. I love DListed.com, but I would never write that stuff. I can curse, but usually I'll punk out and use the %#)*. I don't like swearing to block out of the message of why I think 24 kind of sucks this year even though I won't stop watching it. It's the message that counts. (I'm being sarcastic)

On journalistic responsibility, I don't expect the blogs to be the whole truth on a topic. If I find a topic of interest in a blog, I will read the blog, but I will go to Google News and look for "real news" on the topic before I write anything in my blog. And I will usually link to both the blog and the real news article. If I had to go through some certification training, I will shut this blog down today. I am way too lazy for that. I work, I write and I go to law school. What more do you want?
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SICK OF THE RACIAL HYPOCRISY

Watching Rev. Sharpton and Imus go at it on the Today Show this morning, I felt my stomach start to turn. As a black woman, I hear things that offend me everyday. We live in a country that places our beauty at the bottom of the list compared to women of other races, of course unless your beauty closely resembles that of women of other races. We know we are just as beautiful as anyone else, and that's how we deal with it.

I made my opinions about Imus clear yesterday. It got so many hits of digg, I was getting a little nervous. If people actually start reading this stuff, I should probably say something important. I wasn't as offended by the comments Imus made because I watch that show all the time and I've heard him say worst things about black people when he's joking and I've heard him say very respectful and positive things about people when he's serious. It doesn't excuse what he said. To add the term "nappy-headed" goes beyond a basic insult. It is too specifically an insult of the beauty of black women everywhere. And these girls aren't public figures, so they don't deserve to have their ethnicity, dignity and sexuality disparaged on the national stage just because they won a basketball game. And a room full of white men discussing black women is always going to end up like this because they don't know, and don't care to know, anything about us. Suspend him for 2 weeks or 2 months, whatever. I've moved on from that incident and when he comes back on the air, I'll probably still watch the show.

What really bothers me is the hypocrisy of these so called black leaders. They have every right to go after Imus. What he said was hurtful and crossed the line in a very touchy area. White men degrading the sexuality of black women is an issue that has existed for centuries in this country and you know what I'm talking about. But I don't want believe that the dignity and honor of black women has anything to do with what they are doing. There is no place where black women are respected less than in our own entertainment culture. For entertainment we are depicted in ways so less honorable than anything Imus said. What he's said in his entire career is less than how many times we are degraded in one hour's worth of videos or songs on the radio.

If it was the dignity of black women that leaders were really concerned about, they would go after those who degrade that dignity with the same gusto they are going after Imus. But it isn't. This is about "see what we can do to them." For all those years that white men disrespected blacks in general and got away with it, they want to show that now you can't. They want to bring him down to show that even rich, white men have limits. To get him fired would be a wonderful victory for them and them only. Herein lies the hypocrisy.

Because at the same time they are celebrating their victory over Imus, kids all over the world will be subject to cultural messages that tell WHITE and BLACK BOYS and GIRLS that black women aren't s%#*. So where was the victory for us? When black leaders are confronted with a white man who disrespects black women, he must lose his job. But when they are confronted with black artists who disrespect black women for profit, their only punishment is to say, "You shouldn't do that." Or maybe if they're feeling real angry, they'll say "That is wrong." They are always admitting that we shouldn't promote this kind of message, but it never goes beyond that. These songs go over the same national airwaves that Sharpton said cannot support these degrading comments my Imus. So who needs to be fired? What artists should we boycott? Which corporations supporting this message should we start calling to pull their support?

The answer is no one. For these black men (and women because there are plenty of them supporting this industry because they profit), their only punishment is to be told what they are doing is wrong and they should change. There is no benefit to these leaders in bringing down anyone who is not white. That's because its not the message they care about. It's the race of the messenger. That's hypocritical.

I want to repeat that I DO NOT condone what Imus said. Black women deal with so much disrespect every day. We are considered "less than" by many and there is no excuse for that. God is just, so all those people will get theirs. I'm just saying if you really believe in a cause, then you have to believe in the cause no matter what. There aren't degrees of concern if you think something is cruel, hurtful and wrong.

Sorry if I seem mean, but I'm mad and it's only 9 in the morning. I promise my next post will be about something that is meaningless and vacuous.
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IMUS MEETS SHARPTON -- CAGED DEATH MATCH ENSUES

4.09.2007


Imus went on Sharpton's radio show and yes he has a radio show. I didn't even know Jesse had a radio show until Michael Richards went and lost his mind. I didn't see it, but I wonder if Imus tried to deflect the attention off himself by pointing out that Sharpton is related to Strom Thurmond. That would have been my strategy. I'm sure it will be on YouTube in a second if it isn't there already. I'll check it out after class. And by after, I mean during because I never pay attention.

Imus appears on Sharpton's radio show KOMO-TV - Seattle, Washington
Imus, Sharpton spar over racial comments - Radio - MSNBC.com

Loves the radio show promo pic!
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CANDIDATES NOT NAMED OBAMA



HILLS
Hillary can't catch a break. Even articles about her are about Obama. Newsweek talks about the fund-raising strategy, to hit up the old Clinton faithfuls is backfiring. However, the photo attached to the story is of Obama shaking hands with the caption, "Obama is a master at working the crowd." MSNBC: The End of Inevitability. You could at least show her the respect of putting her picture on the story. And why has her strategy backfired? Isn't she rolling in more dough than anyone ever has at this stage in the campaign?

So Bill said that Barry said something about the Iraq war that Barry didn't say and somehow, people are blaming Hills for it. The point of the story is that Hills hasn't found her niche. While Barry can stand tall with his "no war" stance, she has to find something that makes her unique. The Hill’s Pundit Blog » Clinton Fumbles Trying To Separate Herself

Yet another article about Hillary through Barack. He pulled a I'm N UR backyard, taking UR money, on Hillary. N.Y.'S BARACK $TARS - New York Post Online Edition


JOHN E.


Edwards is closing in on Hillary. In New Hampshire, A 35% to 16 % lead has turned into a 27% to21%. Obama is still coming in third. Edwards closes in on Hillary - The Washington Times

Now you all know that I like Edwards, but this is just wrong. Edwards Provides Lesson in E-Campaigning 101 - The Sleuth

"When you visit the John Edwards for President Web site, you're invited to send a sympathy note to the Edwardses. And tens of thousands of well wishers have done so since that heart-wrenching news conference two weeks ago at which Elizabeth Edwards courageously discussed her incurable cancer.
What those well wishers get in return -- e-mail messages soliciting contributions to Edwards's campaign."

I'm sorry, but that is not cool.


RUDY
We're seeing the Giuliani that his critics warn about. The temperamental guy that has to control everything. Well, in a campaign for President, it is impossible. With the Internet, you do not have the only say in your image and you can't control how much the press writes about your wife. Former mayor up to old tricks again, trying to control everything his way - NY Daily News
Rudy is pro-choice. We all know this. It's only one issue of many that differentiates his opinions from that of the Republican party platform. It would be an interesting convention if he was selected for candidate. If, I said. The State - Abortion issue could hurt Giuliani in S.C.

If you're running for President and want to portray yourself as a serious, law abiding person, you might want to cut down on the Godfather imitations. Great movie, but...no. Rudy rattles some with Vito Corleone's voice - Newsday.com. And don't say he can get away with it because he is Italian. He just really needs to tighten things up a bit.

Rudy promises to cut ties with his law firm, the very law firm that is trying to help Hugo Chavez take over America. That's an exaggeration, but he really needs to quit if he is serious about running. Has he declared yet? So many people have, I can't get it straight. RUDY CONFIRMS HE'LL SNIP BIZ TIE By - New York Post Online Edition

Former NY Mayor Ed Koch has no love for other former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani. He wrote a whole book about it. IMPLACABLE FOE - New York Post Online Edition

MITT

Someone is also trying to clarify what Romney has already said one million times. He's a Mormon, but he does not believe in polygamy. And just because his ancestors did it, doesn't mean he thinks its okay. Union Leader - Romney: 1 man 1 woman



Someone tried to make a scandal out of Romney's hunting habits, but it pretty much flopped. Just remind everyone he's a Mormon. Those fundamentalists will run away like crazy. Yes, we agree with all his issues and he seems like a trustworthy man and a strong leader, but he's not down with J.C., so...yeah. Romney Scandal: Candidate Has Never Even Shot a Lawyer - Wonkette

I sincerely doubt Romney and Bush were BFFs ever. Romney doesn't seem like the kind of guy that would laugh at jokes that aren't funny. Either way, Romney is doing what every other candidate is doing, distancing himself from Bush. Romney distances himself from Bush IndyStar.com

Old news that Romney is the Hillary of the Republican party, but at only $21 million, he can't even match Obama. Romney tops GOP in race for funds - The Boston Globe. You people realize you don't get your money back when a candidate loses, right?
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THE ALSO RANS


The "also rans" is the headline I will devote to people whose name will be listed below the fold when people review the presidential candidates of 2008. I'm tempted to put McCain here, but that would not be appropriate.


Even though welfare reform under Clinton (with a Republican Congress) was successful, getting a record number of people off of welfare and back to work, Senator Brownback (R-KS) says the program needs some more reforming. If you don't get married, you get kicked off. DesMoinesRegister.com: Brownback Encourages Reform of Welfare System

"One of the things we need to do is drive up the number of people who get married," he said, explaining that welfare laws right now mean that a person on federal aid can lose 88 percent of his benefit if he gets married."People act economically rational," he said. "They are just not going to do that."
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METRO D.C. UPDATE

Here's whats been happening in my neighborhoods:

So it's always been said that D.C. is Hollywood for Ugly People. Okay, so you would be hard pressed to make a full 12-month calendar out of hot members of Congress. However, not everyone in D.C. is fug. And recent trends on the local scene are emphasizing that. I get Washingtonian, Capitol File and Washington Life. They show a prettier side of D.C. and are all very multi-ethnic. Kerry Washington is on the cover of Capitol File, one month after Iman. The Fentys and socialite Katie Rost graced the cover of recent Washington Life and Washingtonian covers. I think. I get all these magazines mixed up. My point is, we're not that ugly. D.C. Is Shedding Its Frumpy Image - Politico.com
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Mayor Fenty, add this to your "to do" list. That is sad, especially considering how educated this area is. It must be really concentrate in particular neighborhoods. Study Finds One-Third in D.C. Illiterate


Mayor Fenty commits to a more aggressive HIV/AIDS prevention program. He pledges to "put an end to this crisis." Fenty Renews Fight Against HIV-AIDS - washingtonpost.com
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WAPO has a cute story on the local whiz kids. Tomorrow's Tycoons - washingtonpost.com. Kids are computer literate and business savvy at a much younger age than they used to be. I remember growing up, we used to drive Daddy crazy with all the hobbies we wanted. He supported a wife and six kids and piano lessons, tennis lessons and cheerleading camp were expensive. Besides, we'd end up quitting a few weeks later. But Mom wouldn't let him deny us because she said, "You don't know Matthew. This could be their thing." The 'thing' was a calling, the God-given talent. You never know. Your kid's next hobby could turn into a business and you'll have a little tycoon on your hands.

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Parents in Montgomery County, MD which consist mostly of the MD suburbs of D.C., feel that the military is putting too much pressure on young boys to join and they want the local schools to restrict the Army's access to them. Parents Want Military Recruiting Limits - washingtonpost.com.


"Montgomery County parents are asking the county school board to consider new rules that would forbid military recruiters to set up tables at school cafeterias, in hallways or at sporting events. On Monday night, parents presented board members with a list of proposals. They include barring military recruitment vehicles such as the Army Adventure Van, with its simulations and promotional materials, from high school campuses and allowing opponents of Army recruitment the same access to students as the military."

Personally I think that is too much access. Joining the army is too big a deal for a kid and I don't think they should be allowed to recruit them without the parents presence or permission. Also, a lot of black people live in Montgomery County, especially in Silver Spring. Most of them are middle class, but many are wealthier than that. Is the army doing this in mostly white middle class to wealthy schools?
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Jesse Jackson is working to make Prince George's County, the richest black county in America, a guinea pig for learning about what to do with black boys. Jackson, County Combine Efforts - washingtonpost.com. PG County is a good place to do this because it has some of the richest black communities, many middle-class black communities and a good number of poor black communities.The plan calls for teachers, parents, police, lawyers, business owners community leaders and elected officials to take part in studying the primary issues that negatively affect black boys. The solutions developed here -- with the resources and leadership of a well-educated, black middle class -- could be exported across the country much as Selma and Montgomery, Ala., were used as staging grounds for civil rights fights in the 1960s, Jackson said.

This sounds good, just don't forget the girls too. Black girls are having a hard time growing up without a father figure to help them understand what a good man is and they see images of themselves as sexual objects creating negative self-esteem issues.

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I say set the highest expectations reasonable and kids will achieve more than you expected. Kids like guidelines and expectations. They help them keep focus and identify a goal. D.C. schools are hoping this is true since they have made graduating from high school in the district a little bit harder than it was before. The policy, which will start next year and apply to all students by 2010, requires all students to take four years of math, science, social studies and English, an attempt to increase academic rigor and give a high school diploma more meaning.District Toughens Graduation Policy - washingtonpost.com. Good move.

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If you live in D.C. and have ridden the Metro around about the time that school lets out, you will be very happy to read this article. Metro Has A Lesson For Unruly Students - washingtonpost.com. The Metro is cracking down on all the little badasses. The last time I was on the metro around 3:30pm, a group of kids got on the train. They were loud, obnoxious and disrespectful to each other and the adults. The sadder thing was that most of this bad behavior was exhibited by the black kids. The few white kids that were there were either zoned out with the iPods on or were only focused on the person next to them. These kids couldn't have been more than 12 or 13 and they were using cuss words and bumping into people walking around the train like it was their living room. Kids are kids and teenagers are...well, you know because you were one. But the reputation of kids on the Metro is infamous and it's good that Metro plans to do something about it.
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ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION POST


More blah, blah, blah about how the administration and Congress want to do something about illegal immigration by putting forth legislation that actually does nothing and the problem continues.


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Also, illegal immigrants are now being encouraged to file taxes and H&R Block is going after the market:

Pedro Morales filed his first income tax return four years ago, a difficult decision for an illegal immigrant and one that caused years of headaches because the apartment manager who prepared his return made so many mistakes.
How do you file taxes using a social security number you stole from someone else? What happens when the person who the SSN really belongs to files as well? The government doesn't care. It just wants the money, which is why it continues to ask no questions when issuing ITINs (individual taxpayer identification number), which illegals use now to get home and car loans, etc. Last year, the IRS issued 1.5 million ITINs, the most since the program was started in 1996. Next year it will 1.8 million, then 2.0 million, then...

Tax prep chains attract immigrants - Yahoo! News

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An Arizona raid of another illegal immigrants smugglers home was one of three conducted this week in the Phoenix area. Overall 170 illegals were caught, but 80 in this smugglers home. He was packing 80 people in a one floor house. Many of the illegals told police they hadn't eaten in a while either. Agents find 80 suspected illegal migrants packed in home - CNN.com
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AFRICA POST


The NYTimes shows us how government policy is going to result in the deaths of thousands of Africans if they don't get the food they need. Even as Africa Hungers, Policy Slows Delivery of U.S. Food Aid - New York Times.

Within weeks, those rations, provided by the United Nations World Food Program, are at risk of running out for them and 500,000 other paupers, including thousands of people wasted by AIDS who are being treated with American-financed drugs that make them hungrier as they grow healthy.

Not the corrupt policies of African governments, but us. Not only is it us, but our President is actually trying to change the policy. U.S. Law requires that virtually all its donated food be grown in America and shipped to Africa on boats that employ American crews. The article says this process typically takes four to six months. For a third year, the Bush administration, which has pushed to make foreign aid more efficient, is trying to change the law to allow the United States to use up to a quarter of the budget of its main food aid program to buy food in developing countries during emergencies.
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More oppression of people who speak out for freedom in Zimbabwe. Another leader who was supposed to something good, but has instead turned into a brutal dictator. In Zimbabwe, Mugabe Critics Face Beatings - New York Times. And no matter what journalists write about it, nothing seems to get done to change what is happening in Zimbabwe or Darfur. New Statesman - When journalism is powerless

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North Korea is trying to get into the African game by giving weapons to Ethiopians very secretly. But there's a problem. America is letting it happen. North Koreans Arm Ethiopians as U.S. Assents - New York Times.

Three months after the United States successfully pressed the United Nations to impose strict sanctions on North Korea because of the country’s nuclear test, Bush administration officials allowed Ethiopia to complete a secret arms purchase from the North, in what appears to be a violation of the restrictions, according to senior American officials.

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I'm surprised this story didn't get more publicity. 5 African Union Peacekeepers were murdered in Darfur. They're killing peace keepers now. I guess no one cares about anyone getting killed in Darfur. Rebel Ambush in Darfur Kills 5 African Union Peacekeepers in Deadliest Attack on the Force - New York Times

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Uganda has finally done something to get rid of one of the ultimate double standards. Allowing men to cheat, but not women. Uganda scraps sexist adultery law Oddly Enough Reuters

Don't get me wrong. I don't think anyone should cheat, but there is no excuse for a law that says one person can, but the other can't. I know there are many "lesser" men who do believe this, but that doesn't excuse making it a law. Those men think one thing when it is their wife who might cheat on them, but the law also applies to your mother or your daughter. Previously a woman could be jailed and fined if branded an adulterer and a man would get...you guessed it. Nothing.

The court also did away with double standard laws that give widowers more rights than widows. Sometimes I just want to say WTF, but I realize this is not America. At least it isn't one of those countries where they kill a woman for just about anything. I just hope these changes send a message to the people and are just the beginning of a better society for men and women.
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HOPE CAN COME FROM TRAGEDY


This is about the best of what is inside of us. When I first heard about this story, I wanted to cry. In 2002, Angela Dawson was trying to save her blocks from the drug dealers and gangs trying to take it over. She filed several complaints with the police department. Gang dealers decided to shut her up for good. They burned down her house, killing her, her husband and their five children ages 9-14. Yes, 5 children. They're all dead and another point for the bad guys in the war against drugs. A suspect was arrested and convicted and is in jail for life without a possibility of parole. He was 21, so if he's lucky, he have 40 or 50 years to think about what he did and know he will never, ever be free again.

But good can come from anything, even something as horrible as this. The home, which was ruined, has been renovated and is now called the Dawson Safe Haven Community Center. The $1.5 million it took to build it came from private and public resources. Now kids from the neighborhood can come to the center and use the computers that stand where the family's bedrooms used to be and do arts and crafts where their common areas used to be. They've also had a police camera on the corner.


I feel certain that Angela Dawson would be proud that her home has became a place where kids can have fun and occupy their free hours safe from drug dealers and gangs.
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THE CHINESE FINALLY GET TO VOTE


So American Idol is coming to China. Well, a sort of American Idol with textbook Chinese government limitations. And how do you leave out tears? And how interesting will this be with the judges prevented from insulting the performers?

Ultimately this is a good thing because once the Chinese get a chance to vote for something, they'll want a chance to vote for everything. When people in the future look at the history of China, it will American Idol that tore down the communist regime and created the largest democracy in the world. It could happen. Arizona Republic: China's 'American Idol' will leave out tears, vulgar songs
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IMUS APOLOGIZES

I was wrong. Last week I was certain that Don Imus would not apologize for his insensitive comments about the Rutgers lady basketball team. Not only has he apologized, but he spent most of his show apologizing and promoting his appearance on Al Sharpton's radio show this afternoon.

First, I do not believe that Imus is a racist. As he reminded people this morning, Imus was very outspoken about the problem of black poverty after the Katrina disaster. He has also been outspoken about Congress showing more interest in sickle cell because many of the black kids that come to his ranch have that illness. A racist wouldn't do this. A racist probably wouldn't even have a camp for ill kids of any race like Imus. This was a group of white men talking about something they don't know anything about. When you talk about something you don't know anything about, you make yourself look like a fool and set yourself up for this kind of trouble.

Like I said before, Imus calls everyone a ho, men and women. He even calls his own wife a "green ho" because of her work in environmental causes. It means nothing. The offensive part was "nappy-headed". He did not know this (which is why he shouldn't be talking about it), but hair is a sensitive issue with black women. And although the term nappy is not an insult in itself, he was using it to insult women who were black. He wouldn't have used that term if he was referring to the women's soccer team. He would have just called them hos. If he had just called these women hos, it would have been unfair, considering they are just 18,19 year old girls, but it wouldn't have been considered racist. Imus on race flap: I'm a good person - MSNBC.com

So he'll go on Sharpton's show and have to apologize and eat humble pie. That's fine. I thought spending 90% of his entire show this morning apologizing was enough, but whatevs. I'm still bothered by the fact that Sharpton is calling for Imus to resign. This is the same Sharpton who did NOT invite Imus on his show when Imus was trying to get publicity for sickle cell. Sharpton is going to say he should lose his job because he disrespected black women. Black leaders all across the country are saying that this is unacceptable. Meanwhile, millions of black kids will come home after school today and watch an hours worth of videos that send them the message that black women aren't worth s^%$. Where are those same black leaders? Yes, they might blah, blah, blah about it, but who among them has called for resignations in the rap industry? Is the message that white men must respect black women but black man don't?
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GERARD BUTLER AND NAOMI CAMPBELL

So I open my news crawler this morning and see this headline. Gerard Butler and Naomi Campbell, New Couple?! I particularly search for news on Gerard because I think he's hot and I love his Scottish accent. However, I was horrified to read this. If it turns out to be true, I will have to revoke Gerard's sexy card. I am aware he is into dark women. I've seen pictures of him on celebrity blogs with black women, but if this is what he wants, there is a long list of better choices. Even though she is looking fierce in this outfit she wore to her most recent court date, this b*$#&* is crazy. And he doesn't come across as someone who has a calm temperament either. This could end up being the best episode of COPS: Celebrity Edition. My only advice to Gerard is that he better stay in line or learn to "Duck and Cover".
Is Gerard Butler the new man in Naomi Campbell's life?
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NON POLITICS ROUNDUP

4.06.2007


If you've been putting off getting .com or .net ownerships for your name, book, idea, company or anything else, someone else has probably already gotten it. Seriously, there are people who just think of domain names to own, they buy them for 10 bucks and end up selling them for $10,000. If you're lucky and no one has your .com or .net, you should get it now because the prices are about to go up. Otherwise, you might think about .tv or one of those other domain tags that no one will ever remember. iWon News - Prices for `.com' and `.net' to Rise


I am well aware that this is the Sunday Mail, which is known for it's outrageous debunked the following day stories, but this one might be true and if it is, it's ridiculous. At this point, scientists would really just save a lot of money if they went to heaven and just spit in God's face. Now scientists create a sheep that's 15% human the Mail on Sunday



Pay attention to this because as China continues its quest to dominate the world, a flight from D.C. to Beijing and Hong Kong will be a daily thing. United Airlines launches first D.C. to Beijing route - USATODAY.com



All I can say is at least the airlines said no to cell phones on the web. USAirliners to Get Wi-Fi Action by Next Year - Gizmodo. Now watch someone try to use the Internet to make a call to someone and scream into the computer for the whole flight. Also, although I like the idea of gettin on the net on the plane, let's require that people use headphones or turn sound off.
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FLORIDA'S SEX OFFENDERS LIVE UNDER A BRIDGE

I'm not surprised that there are very little places willing to take registered sex offenders after they get out of jail, because sex offenders have about the highest rate of recidivism. However, to have them live under a bridge just seems incredibly odd. Trust me when I say I wish sex offenders, especially child molesters would stay in jail forever, but this is just really odd. Florida housing sex offenders under bridge - CNN.com

"I got nowhere I can go!" says sex offender Rene Matamoros, who lives with his dog on the shore where Biscayne Bay meets the causeway.

The Florida Department of Corrections says there are fewer and fewer places in Miami-Dade County where sex offenders can live because the county has some of the strongest restrictions against this kind of criminal in the country.

Florida's solution: house the convicted felons under a bridge that forms one part of the causeway.

The Julia Tuttle Causeway, which links Miami to Miami Beach, offers no running water, no electricity and little protection from nasty weather. It's not an ideal solution, Department of Corrections Officials told CNN, but at least the state knows where the sex offenders are.
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SCIENTISTS WHO BELIEVE IN GOD


Scientists who believe in God are rather rare. This CNN article talks about one in particular, Dr. Francis Collins who sees no conflict in his belief in both science and God. Collins: Why this scientist believes in God - CNN.com.

"As the director of the Human Genome Project, I have led a consortium of scientists to read out the 3.1 billion letters of the human genome, our own DNA instruction book. As a believer, I see DNA, the information molecule of all living things, as God's language, and the elegance and complexity of our own bodies and the rest of nature as a reflection of God's plan."

Personally, I don't believe that God made all the species on the planet and all the different races. I believe he allowed what he did create to evolve. This earth is a living being and works its wonders with its inhabitants. I've been taping the Discovery Channel's Planet Earth series, which is one of the most amazing things I have ever seen. I also watched the GALAPAGOS series last month. When I see these shows, I find it amusing that they use them to show proof of evolution because they only strengthens my belief in God.

I was brought up to believe that God exist becuause of Kittens and Lillies, but in my old age, I grew more skeptical. But in the end, no matter what science proves, I believe in God.




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MY CAR DILEMNA

Pretend like you care.

First, these are the cars I want.
















The BMW has a sticker price of $39K
The Lexus has a sticker price of $38K

However, I am in law school and since I'm trying to spend as much of my money as possible to avoid being $80K in debt when I graduate, I cannot afford either.




These are more in my price range.



















The Honda has a sticker price of $22K
The Equinox has a sticker price of $23K
I'm leaning towards the Equinox because the Honda just seems like a 21 year old's SUV.
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GERALDO O'REILLY CAT FIGHT - THEY SHOULD HAVE PUT IT ON PAY-PER-VIEW


If you didn't see it, you've heard about it. Bill O'Reilly and Geraldo Rivera came two seconds from beating the living tar out of each other. As far as television cat fights, it was pretty good. You know the kind you can see building up and your stomach starts to tighten a little while you say, "are they going to come to blows?" Unfortunately, they did not, but I doubt they will ever be BFFs again.

An illegal immigrant was driving drunk in Virginia Beach and killed to girls. This guy had already had several encounters with the law, they knew he was illegal and did not deport him. O'Reilly was justifiably angry about that. Geraldo took issue saying that O'Reilly was taking advantage of this tragedy to make his anti-illegal argument. Then O'Reilly said Geraldo was for open-borders. Then someone said something about someone's mama and it was mayhem and madness.

If they hadn't gone to commercial, I believe there would have been at least a slap. Oh well, I'm sure the liberals loved it. The blogs completely exploded. I cringe to write this, but I'm on O'Reilly's side with this. The man should have been deported. There are several cases of illegal immigrants who were caught for rape, murder and other crimes that had previously come in contact with the law and were let go. In Texas, you get at least 5 run-ins with the law before they even think about sending you off. Yes, anyone could have hit those girls, but anyone
Fox's Bill O'Reilly and Geraldo Rivera duke it out in on-air shouting match - On Deadline - USATODAY.com
TVNewser: O'Reilly & Geraldo Almost Come To Blows

And you can always count on YouTube to have the best parts:
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CUTEST THUMBNAIL GALLERY EVER



I know that that little German polar bear, Knut, is getting all the pub right now. He's a cutey pie. I'll give him that. However, some are suggesting he's even cuter than my baby, Tai Shan. Now I know that Tai Shan is almost 2 and weighs like 100lbs, but he was THE CUTEST furry baby EVER!
Below are some clips of the thumbnail gallery. You have to look at it. He's just love.
Giant Panda Cub Photo Gallery Thumbnails - National Zoo FONZ
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DON'T HIRE 40-YEAR OLDS WITH MASTER'S DEGREE FOR AN UNPAID INTERNSHIP


When I read about this interning stealing over 150 items from the U.S Archives and selling them on ebay, including the official announcement of President Lincoln's death, I had to do a double-take. Not because of what he did, but he's 40-years old. SUSPECT! Okay, just SUSPECT. If a 40-year old man with a master's degree came to you for an unpaid internship, you should be suspicious. He's after something. They got everything back, so its all good.Hat Tip: Wonkette

Intern Admits Thefts From U.S. Archives - New York Times
Now Why Would a 40-Year-Old Intern Ever Do This to His Employer? - Wonkette
Zdnet: Archives intern sells Civil War docs on eBay

I've walked by that building 100 times in the 8 years I've lived in D.C. and have never been in. Isn't that a shame? The Constitution and the Declaration only 100 feet away, but I'm too lazy.
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NAPPY-HEADED HOS IS KIND OF AN INSULT


You've probably heard by now that Don Imus who runs a radio/tv talk show on MSNBC in the mornings is in hot water for calling the female basketball players at Rutgers a bunch of nappy-headed hos" going against his beloved Tennessee girl's team. Both teams are majority black. Others referred to them as "hard-core hos" and said they resembles the Toronto Raptors, which is an NBA team. Probably being compared to the Raptors is the most insulting of all. Media Matters - Imus called women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos"

Imus and his co-horts continued to compare the rivalry between Rutgers girls to Tennessee girls to School Daze, the Spike Lee movie that depicts the rivalry between light-skinned and dark-skinned women. Jigaboos and Wannabes were the names they threw at each other.

There really isn't much you can say about this. Imus is an equal opportunity insulter, but this is harsh even for him. He has ridden that mean, old man who hates everyone and everything for a long time. I hardly ever watch the show, but when I have I've only heard him say good things about blacks, including the terminally ill black children that come out to his ranch every summer.

As a black woman, I was offended by the term nappy-headed. Because he has called everyone, including First Ladies, hos. If he had kept it like that, no one could say anything. But by adding the nappy-headed part, he was insulting their blackness. The School Daze reference was completely out of line, but it's just icing on the hate cake.

I can't tell you exactly what this is, but I think it might be a case of someone thinking they were a lot more down than they really are and could get away with saying something that you have to REALLY, REALLY be down to say. And I will bet you one million dollars (which I don't have so that tells you how sure I am) that there will not be an apology.

The Media Matters link (above) has the video of the crime.



One of the organizations I belong to, National Assoc of Black Journalists, NABJ has issued a formal statement in protest of his words. www.nabj.org.
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FLORIDA MAKES A MISTAKE, BUT NOT THE WORST KIND


"Gov. Charlie Crist persuaded Florida's clemency board Thursday to let most felons easily regain their voting rights after prison, saying it was time to leave the “offensive minority” of states that uniformly deny ex-offenders such rights."


Crist paints felons as victims. They are NOT victims. They are in jail because they made victims of other people, not themselves. That being said, I'm not that upset with Florida's law. Unlike some states that want to allow all felons to vote and even some that want to allow them to vote while they're still in prison, FL at least has some standards.

Before this, most felons could petition to recover their right to vote after time and probation served. Florida has over 1 million convicted felons across the state, of which they say that 80% are considered non-violent. I would like to know their definition of non-violent. Even if you don't hurt someone, if you steal their car or break into their home, I think you're a violent criminal. Violence is about force. Under the new rules, this so called 80% win automatic rights restoration after the state makes sure they have paid any restitution to victims and have no pending criminal charges. This doesn't seem unreasonable at all.


Violent criminals, convicted murderers, sexual predators and “violent career criminals” will still need an investigation of their case and a hearing before the clemency board. Most will probably not regain the right to vote, serve on a jury or get jobs that require state licenses, like as a barber or nurse.
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THE STUDENT LOANS SCANDAL CONTINUES


When I posted about the fact that the Student Loan folks have been overcharging people for the past ten years (and knew they were doing it), POLITOPICS: Education Dept. Has Overcharged Student Loans For Years, I wasn't aware of all the corruption connected to the student loan industry. I didn't need student loans for undergrad, but for Law School, I'll end up owing Citibank my first born child. If you are a student on loans or a former student trying to pay off loans, you need to know all that is going on. Here are a few articles.

Federal Official in Student Loans Held Loan Stock - New York Times
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WAR CRIMES IN SOMALIA


The article starts, European diplomats said Thursday that they were investigating whether Ethiopian and Somali government forces committed war crimes last week during heavy fighting in Somalia’s capital that killed more than 300 civilians. Let me save you the time and money. Of course there were war crimes. Doesn't every skirmish in Africa include war crimes? I would be shocked if there weren't any. So let's just assume there were and go from there. Somali Battles Bring Charges of War Crimes - New York Times.

Parts of Somalia have been at war for the past 15 years, but civilian deaths have increased in recent years, which is why the European Commission is investigating. They could use some intervention over there, but good luck getting America to go anywhere near Mogadishu ever again.
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KENYA IS JOINING THE FLAT WORLD


First, this Op-Ed Column, Cellphones, Maxi-Pads and Other Life-Changing Tools - New York Times, is by Thomas Freidman (hence the headline) and if you don't have Times Select, you won't be able to read the whole thing. Remember, if you have an .edu e-mail address you can get it for free, even if you are an alumnae. It's worth it.

Otherwise, I'll tell you this. Writing from Nairobi, Freidman offers an answer to the decades old question, "How do we fix Africa?" The continent seems destined to a life of disease, poverty and corruption. But
Kenya is doing what many African countries aren't; holding on to their smart and educated and looking to them to come up with the solutions to Kenya's problems.

Freidman finds the answer in the form of transparency, telephones, Tergat and Kotex. "Naisiae Tobiko is a 28-year-old dynamo who grew up in Kenya’s Masai region. She runs a public relations firm, but when we met all she wanted to talk about was Kenya’s shortage of sanitary napkins for girls. Here’s why, she explained: Her family could afford to send her to school, where she thrived. As she got older, though, she started to notice something about the less well-off girls — they missed four days of class every month, “and I could not understand why.” When she finally asked, they confided that they did not come to school when they were menstruating — because their parents could not afford sanitary napkins."

Tobiko took it upon herself to find an organization that can help her distribute free sanitary napkins. It's the little things that allow people to do the big things easier.

Freidman tells the story of other Kenyans who recognized a problem and took the initiative to solve it, and most importantly, in a way that corrupt politicians can't easily use to their advantage. "Add all this up and you have what impresses me most here: the way Kenya’s emerging democracy is unlocking Kenya’s best minds to find Kenyan solutions to Kenya’s problems."

BTW - Tergat is the name of a famous long-distance runner who started an anti-corruption campaign. It's not the Kenyan word for Target, which is what I was hoping.
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THE LAW & ORDER CANDIDATE

4.05.2007


Don't you love how Fred Thompson looks as if he just might give you a left hook in the middle of a sentence? I respect that in a man. I kind of like this guy, if you haven't figured it out already. And I'm seeing that a lot of people in the GOP like him too. But there is a growing sentiment that is not so cool on him. He's got a very young wife, right? And he spent time in Hollywood, which my mother refers to as the offramp to the Apocalypse. Those Jesus freak people think that everyone in Hollywood is gay. Still, I think the moderate Republicans and Independents will like his mix of experience. And others are just worried about the equal time rule because Law & Order reruns are on twice every hour of every day on every channel.

Here's what people are saying:
'Law & Order' And Lobbying - Politico.com
Newsweek Blogs: President Thompson, I'm Ready for My Close-Up
TheHill.com - Evangelical leader warms to a run by Thompson in ’08
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UPDATE ON CANDIDATE'S NOT NAMED OBAMA


Honestly, I'm not at all interested in John McCain. Like I said before, his time has passed and when he didn't take Bush & Rove to task for using that "John McCain has a black baby" ploy in South Carolina, I lost respect for him. Now, he's pandering to the religious right and looks like the desperate friend who will do anything if you just play with him. The campaign has been plagued with a lot so far, but mostly fundraising. He's way behind Romney and he's trying to switch it up so he can make some headway before formerly declaring.
McCain Retools Money Team, Delays Entry - Politico.com
McCain hires new fundraising chief - USATODAY.com

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Colorado Congressman Tom "all immigrants must go" Tancredo is also running for Prez. He has one issue; immigration. Honestly, I agree with many of his positions on illegal immigration, but he always takes it too far. I keep expecting to hear him suggest a return to internment camps. "If it worked with the Japanese, why not Mexicans?" He's going to say it one day. Mark my words. Immigration will be important in 2008, especially after Congress completely screwed it up, but it's not enough to get someone elected.

I know it's kind of mean to put McCain in the same post as Tancredo, because McCain is actually a real candidate, but space issues you know?

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I haven't heard anything about Governor Richardson's quest for the Oval Office. He would be the first Hispanic-ish candidate. But not so soon. The Washington Times wants to remind us of all the scandalous people he used to work with. Oh big deal. Who in big time politics hasn't worked with one person who is now residing in a correctional facility of some kind? Name one person. Washington Times: Scandal figures gave to Richardson's runs
And this headline is just mean. NYO - Bill Richardson Seeks Clinton Scraps
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THE IVY LEAGUES HAVE GONE MAD


Last year, Harvard, Yale and other Ivy League and top tier schools announced that it was getting rid of its early acceptance because it put students who rely on financial aid at a disadvantage. They have to wait to see what aid offer they get, so they can't participate. Honestly, I think if you get accepted at Harvard, you take it and figure out the money later.

Now, they are lowering the number of students they allow into the schools. This last spring was the most selective in the modern history of the elites. And this all at a time when they are receiving a record number of applications. Who thinks you're not getting into Harvard with a perfect 2400 score on the 3-part SAT and a 4.0? And you were class valedictorian? And you even got the CEO of your dad's Fortune 100 company to write you a recommendation. He's an alumn for Christ's sake! Still they said no. A Great Year for Ivy League Schools, but Not So Good for Applicants to Them - New York Times

Some of the dark stats:
--Harvard turned down 1,100 student applicants with perfect 800 scores on the SAT math exam.
--Yale rejected several applicants with perfect 2400 scores on the three-part SAT
--Princeton turned away thousands of high school applicants with 4.0 grade point averages.
--Stanford received a 23,956 undergrad apps, accepted 2,456 students.
--Harvard undergrad received 22,955 apps, accepted 2,058 (lowest admit rate in school's history)
--Columbia received 18,081, and accepted 1,618.

You better win a Nobel or Pulitzer or something before your junior year or start thinking State.
How many of the kids who got denied are blaming Affirmative Action. Maybe they aren't as smart as they think they are. My little Erin scored so high on her PSAT's that she got a bunch of little cards from Universities congratulating her. The school is actually thinking of skipping her a grade in Junior High. Anyway, she wanted to go to Brown, but didn't so much after I told her it doesn't mean there are brown people there. She's just a little kid.
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ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION UPDATE

Bush & the GOP have been backing down from their promise to do something about protecting our borders from illegal entry for a while now. Now they spend their time talking about what they want to do, what should be done and what others aren't doing. Everything, but actually doing something about it. And if they manage by surprise to do something, it's more backtracking.

"Six months after approving a bill promising to build some 850 miles of fence along the U.S.-Mexico border, the Bush administration and Senate Republicans are now saying 370 miles is enough."

Oh really? I wasn't so excited about a big ass wall around the country myself, but this is just more about putting politics ahead of the law. The GOP has to get back Congress and keep the White House. They can't have the black vote, but they can get the Hispanic vote. That's what this is about. Bush, GOP senators trim border fence goal - Nation/Politics - The Washington Times, America's Newspaper

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This NYTimes opinion article starts with, "Everyone said the nation's anti-immigrant fever was going to spread to Texas this year." Uhm.... As if to say it wasn't there before? Texas, a state with a ton of illegal immigrants has always had the fever, but the state has had to balance their anti-immigrant stand against their need for cheap labor they don't have to offer any benefits to.


I guess the writer is referring to the new legislation the state has proposed to combat illegal immigration. After an Anti-Immigrant Flare-Up, Texas Gets Back to Business - New York Times. One bill proposes taxing money transfers to Latin America and suing the federal government for money spent on border enforcement. One bill even suggest that Texas-born children of illegals be denied citizenship. Uhm...Not sure how that would work, but okay. The writer sees this as an attempt to make the lives of immigrants miserable, but again we are mixing the illegal with the legal to make them seem the same. They aren't. If you are here illegal, you shouldn't be getting any of the benefits legal immigrants get. Whether or not you're miserable is up to you. The good news is that after the pro-immigrant groups threw a trantrum, the legislature calmed down and agreed to come up with an immigration reform plan that doesn't violate the 14th Amendment.

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Politico has some of the details of the GOP's revised immigration strategy. Details of GOP's Immigration Bill Strategy - Politico.com

Some snippets:
A path to permanent residency for the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants is in. But making it easy -- or affordable -- for them is out, according to the group's working paper that began circulating on Capitol Hill just before the spring break. Granting visas based on merit is in. A long-standing goal of reunifying families through the immigration system is out.And, as expected, tougher border enforcement and sanctions on employers who flout the rules are way, way in.

Sounds like a back down to me.
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HAITIAN IMMIGRANTS CAN LEARN FROM CUBANS


What do you know about the political issues facing Haitian immigrants in Florida? Nothing, right? What do you know about the political issues facing Cuban immigrants in Florida? Nothing, right? Probably except you know they hate Castro. For those who actually care about immigration issues and the powerful lobbying influence they might have with Congress and the White House, Haitians are almost invisible, while Cubans have a very powerful grass roots organization, as well as influential members on The Hill and the result is more favorable treatment of Cuban immigrants.

What's the problem with Haitians? Haitians have high profile, low clout - MiamiHerald.com. There are more than 300,000 of them in Florida. They have friends in Congress. The CBC has been a long time advocate of their cause. Here's the problem. They left Haiti, but they brought all the class and political divisions that existed there with them to Florida, so they don't work together. They need all the resources they posses to organize, but they segregate by classism established in the motherland. Cuba is a communist country, so class issues, although existing, aren't that relevant. But it's a shame that Haitians continue to be their own oppressors. You left Haiti for a reason.
Until they figure that out and get passed the negative mindset that existed in their old country, they'll still be a mostly silent immigrant group; at least compared to Cubans and other Hispanic groups. Now that the Democrats are in charge of Congress, we can expect to see some of the issues the CBC has been fighting for get a little more attention.
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RACIAL IMBALANCE IN RICH COMMUNITIES


Are we going to back to forced busing of school kids?

One thing about growing up in cities like Atlanta, Chicago, D.C., New York, Philadelphia or Los Angeles, is if you are a child of wealthy black parents, you'll find a lot of black kids like yourself. This is so whether you are in public or private school. And most of those areas have an active Jack & Jill chapter for kids of wealthy black parents to get to know each other. The toniest private schools in the District have a high number of black students. But if you're a rich black kid in a non-metropolitan area, you're likely to be the only one or one of a very few.

This isn't just an imposition for the kid, it's one for the school district as well. In several CT cities like Greenwich and Hartford, the school districts are having a problem with diversity and some of them, like Greenwich, are just now starting to do something about it. They're doing this because the Dept of Education is forcing them to they really value diversity. CT has a state law on racial balance and schools have to adhere to it. The school's superintendent plans to spread minority students more equally among the district’s 14 elementary and middle schools. But parents aren't happy about this. Many of them choose the community they live in because of the local schools. They wanted their kids to have a top-notch education without having to be sent far from home.

Also, busing would limit the children's ability to get involved in afterschool groups and activities, which will hurt their social growth and make them less attractive to colleges. >Wealthy Connecticut School District Starts to Grapple With Racial Imbalance - New York Times
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MUSLIM WOMEN & FASHION


One of my college buddies, Aya, was a Muslim. When I noticed she never wore shorts or short-sleeved shirts even when it was hot and muggy out, I asked her why and she said it was her faith. Not only are women supposed to cover up completely, they can't wear anything that would show their curves. At least that was the interpretation she gave me. It was a real struggle for her sometimes, but she was determined to stick to her faith.

Here's an interesting NYTimes article about Muslim womenwho try to strike a balance between faith and fashion. We, Myself and I - New York Times. It can't be easy and must seem like a burden at times. Regardless of your spiritual beliefs, it's difficult for anyone, anyone who is actually trying, to stay in line with the tenets of one's religion. It's so much easier to compromise. It always bothered me when I saw Muslim women covered up from head to toe in the humid, muggy D.C. summer standing next to men wearing short sleeved shirts and shorts. Seems unfair to me, but it's their choice so it's none of my business.
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GAS AT $4 - NOT FAR AWAY


Gas per gallon around here ranges from $2.75 in the VA/MD suburbs to about $3.25 in the district. As much as it hurts, I believe it when people say gas will get up to $4 soon and could reach $5 or $6. ABC News: 'Strong Possibility' Gas Will Rise to $4

I need a new car. My car is 8 years old and it's starting to have more than the usual amount of problems you would expect from a car. I just got new breaks, a new alternator, new tires and now there's something wrong with the steering wheel. The warranty is over and it's been paid off for 4 years now, so I'm feeling it's time to toss it.

I was interested in getting a small SUV like the BMW X3/X5 or the Lexus 350/400. Then I realized I'm still in law school so the BMW & Lexus will have to wait. I'm more in the Chevy Equinox or Honda CR-V price range. But with gas prices, what sense does it make to buy an SUV? At least the Honda CR-V gets mileage similar to a regular car. I don't want to end up regretting my choice because of gas.
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5 MILLION CONDOMS & COUNTING


As part of it's taxpayer funded anti-STD campaign, NY City is giving away condoms to just about anyone who wants them. The plan was a "sensation" the first month, giving away 5 million condoms. So go to your local hair salon, clothing store, nightclub, coffeehouse or restaurant and pick up your free condom. But beware, this is a government product, so you might want to double up just in case. Personally, I'd stick with the private sector on issues of life or death, but its a personal choice.

NYC gives away 5 million official condoms in 1st month - Newsday.com

To go along with the fight against HIV, the city is planning to promote circumcision, which doctors worldwide are saying is a very good way to lessen a man's chance of getting HIV/AIDS. Maybe I'm foolish, but doesn't every boy get circumcised unless the parents specifically ask for him not to be? New York City Plans to Promote Circumcision - New York Times
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APOLOGIES FOR THURSDAY


I have to say I'm a little surprised that Newt Gingrich somewhat apologized for his statement that bilingual teaching is equivalent to the language of the ghetto. It was a stupid thing to say that overshadowed his point, which was actually an argument worth making. So he concedes that he used the wrong words, but not that he was wrong. I guess if you're running for Prez, you don't have a choice. I'm pretty sick of all the apology stuff, but its inevitable. You can't say anything these days without having a lawyer and a pr rep analyze it. And even then, you'll offend someone and they will demand an apology. I have a feeling this is the first of several apologies we'll be hearing from Newt between now and when he drops out of the race. Gingrich admits -- in Spanish -- 'my word choice was poor' - CNN.com
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I SPOKE TOO SOON


Remember my post earlier this week saying that I agreed with the President's choice to withdraw the nomination of Sam Fox for US Ambassador to Belgium? He was a huge player in financing the Swift Boat commercials that were just below the belt. John Kerry was on the committee that was in charge of affirming the nomination. I thought Bush considered it a lost cause and was going to move on. That's my bad. This man never gives up, no matter how inappropriate someone is. Bernard Kerik, Harriet Miers, Michael Brown, Albert Gonzales, and the list goes on.

Bush renominated Fox yesterday, taking advantage of the Congressional holiday to bypass Congress. Swift Boat donor's appointment sidesteps Congress - CNN.com. This is the same thing he did with Sam Bolton with the U.N. Of course. It's a cowardly move.
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POLITOPICS


So I've implemented a few more changes, mainly fixing my archives, adding a search politopics tool, an e-mail address and Halo Scan comments. Halo Scan are more efficient and look better than the blogger comments. The bad news is, except for the most recent comments, the old blogger comments can't be seen. No big deal. My next big task is to make it so clicking on links opens up in a new page.
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THEY AREN'T REALLY SMALLER PORTIONS


Just a few weeks ago, the NYTimes was writing about Hardees New 1450 calorie Monster Burger(above), which is sinful gluttony. McDonalds has quieted down on the supersizing ever since that documentary, Supersize Me, made them look bad. But while other fast food joints are increasing portions, restaurants are decreasing theirs. Will Diners Still Swallow This? - New York Times.
They're calling it smaller portions, but in reality they are normal portions and still a little over what we should be eating per meal. I have to lose weight, so I went to my doctor. I wanted pills, she refused and said diet and exercise. My doctor was showing me the portion sizes I should be eating and they are so small I feel like crying just thinking about it.

This is a good thing. We are all a bunch of fatasses and we need to help each other. You know you never finish your plate when you go out to restaurants like TGIF, Ruby Tuesday or any of those other places you go when you want a quick bite but aren't interested in going to a quality joint. And don't say you just get the salad bar because when you load it up with a pound of sunflower seeds, cheese and ranch dressing, it ends up being 14,000 calories and enough to feed a family of four.
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OBAMA POST


Would you read a newspaper article with 4600 words? No. How about if that article was about Presidential candidate Obama's youth. Double No. I'm too lazy and have other things to do. Timothy McNulty, of the Chicago Tribune, writes about the Tribune's 4600 word article on Obama's youth and ask how much is too much? So, how much is just too much? Chicago Tribune. I'd say Obama gets 50% of all the political coverage and the other candidates, Dems & Repubs, share the other 50%.

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While in New Hampshire this past Monday, Obama mentioned to a crowd that he anticipated most of the problems in Iraq. Obama: 'I anticipated most of the problems' in Iraq - Fosters. Why does that come off as arrogant to me? He wasn't a part of Congress when the decision to go to war happened and things were already a mess before he became Senator. I guess he's saying from his state Senate seat in Illinois, he figured out something 535 members of Congress and the President couldn't. He didn't have the information they had, so that statement couldn't be based on much other than a hunch. Besides, several people anticipated most of the problems in Iraq. It was just that no one was listening to them.

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Some kid put some Jesus-looking cloth over a plastic figure of Obama and people are having a bit of a fit. I don't know why. They've all been acting as if he's the second coming. Art student's Obama piece causes stir - USATODAY.com


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How did Obama put together his donor network which has allowed him to raise almost as much as Hillary? Obama raises $25M to rival Clinton camp - Yahoo! News. By building up from the funds he raised to run for the Senate seat in 2002. Chicago has deep pockets black and white. He lives in the neighborhoods of most of the richest black families in the Midwest. He also has deep dollars from Chicago families with names like Pritzker which you see on museums and wings at hospitals and school halls. Add to that all his alumns from Harvard Law, who I think it's safe to say are probably doing well for themselves right now. He is new to Washington, but he isn't new to politics or raising money.


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Obama has the luxury of saying he was against the war from the beginning without the responsibility of having to vote to approve it since that happened before he got here. Its an enviable position while other candidates have to either stick with their original opinion or have to explain why they've changed their minds, he's goes on untainted by it. That doesn't mean he's not going to have any problems when it comes to his anti-war stance. He will. Obama Faces Battle Over Iraq War Opposition - Politico.com
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WHERE ARE ALL THE BLACK CHEFS?


Earlier today I asked where all the black golfers were at. Ten years after Tiger won his first PGA title, he is still the only black player on the PGA Tour. Now I ask the question, where are all the black chefs at? And don't act as if you don't watch the Food Network. Everyone does. But where are the the black chefs? Besides the Cake Love guy, I don't think there are any on that channel. Nobody wants to learn how to make cake. That's what bakeries are for. What about real food? I love Paula Dean because she's Savannah naughty through and though, and I can tolerate Rachel Ray if I put the mute button on from time to time, but I'm looking for B. Smith.

I can see B. Smith w/Style on TV One, but that isn't only a cooking show. TV One: B. Smith With Style She's an all around perfectionist and does it with great class and taste. You can also see Turn Up The Heat with G. Garvin on TV One. TV One: G. Garvin

Black chefs are having a hard time getting the kind of recognition that will get them their own show. Is it because networks fear whites will think they are cooking "black food?" It can't be because they aren't out there because they are. What's up? Chicago Sun Times: Where are all the black chefs?
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LOCAL RACE AND/OR POLITICS ROUNDUP

I haven't done a Local Race & Politics Roundup in a long time. Here are some select articles

Houston, TX
After offering more than $120 million to the D.C. school system, Bill & Melinda Gates have put a few million in the pot for Houston's schools. They are some of donors who contributed a total of $65 million to the Knowledge Is Power Program, the largest charter school program in the country. Deep pockets. The organization will use the money to create 42 schools in the Houston area. I think this is awesome, but you know the existing public school system is going to cry foul. They just seem to think that people should be restricted to whatever quality level of education they can offer the students and it's wrong for people to seek something better elsewhere. Charter School Effort Gets $65 Million Lift - washingtonpost.com


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Paterson, New Jersey
Corruption in a city office in Jersey. How original. Most of them are from the Housing Authority or Section 8 Housing departments and they were just basically being a bunch of bullies. 14 City Employees in Paterson Are Charged in Corruption Sweep - New York Times

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Brooklyn, NY
Apparently New York has a quality mechanic problem. They have more jobs than experienced people and the jobs generally start at $17/hr for entry level. One union worker says with years of training and experience, a mechanic or technician can earn $100K or more a year. This article talks about a program at an Automotive High School in Brooklyn which, after the students have gone home, are helping adults learn about auto repair. What's Under the Hood? Training, and Plenty of Job Prospects - New York Times. Car repair is big money depending on where you live. In Metro areas where the environment does serious damage to a car, mechanics can ride sweet. These damn DC streets must produce billions in wheel alignments alone. Many of these men, and a few women, are learning the new way to fix cars, which because of the mass computerization of systems has forced older car workers to give up. Although this program is great, I hope they are included a little lesson on how these folks can eventually own their own garage. I think every trade class should be about more than learning the trade with your hands, but how to use that to lift yourself to being your own boss.


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Tallahassee, Florida
This article is pretty wild. It tells the story of a woman who found out that she had a record thirty years after the fact and how this relates to many people who protested during the days of segregation getting their records clear or getting pardons. Fla. lawmakers want quicker pardons for segregation protesters - Daily Report. More and more employers are conducting full background checks and when they see your record, there is nothing on there that will say you were arrested for a sit-in to protest segregation. It will just say you are a convicted criminal. Bye bye job.

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Chicago, Illinois
What happened to Cabrini Greens project housing? I'm from Chicago and when I left that city in 1998, I thought that Cabrini Greens was turning around. The city and private investors had thrown a lot of money into cleaning up the graffiti and building fake grass parks over all that empty concrete. Since then, it has become the Jekyll and Hyde of housing developments. Some people discovered it was some prime property and began to bulldoze the place down to make money for people who can afford their own rent and mortgages. Other parts of the building are almost abandoned and have just as many squatters as legal residences where drug dealers block the doorways and kids still get shot. Two different worlds are colliding and its the poor, law abiding residents that will suffer no matter which side wins. At Housing Project, Both Fear and Renewal - New York Times

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New Orleans, Louisiana

In Angelina and Brad's new hometown, a judge recently ordered 42 criminal defendants released from jail (I'm assuming they weren't in prison because they aren't convicted yet) because they are not getting a fair shake from a city that is still working at minimal capacity. New Orleans judge orders 42 freed - CNN.com. This is a shame too because people are getting killed left and right in New Orleans just like before Katrina and the city can't deal with it before or after. The indigent defenders office is strapped and the judge said it isn't fair to put these Ds on trial without proper representation. A higher court judge delayed the order until April 18th. Come April 18th, they would suspend the prosecution, but not the charges. I guess they'll ask the Ds to come back later? That sounds something like asking illegal immigrants to show up in court so they can be deported. Good luck. Meanwhile, these guys (who are drug dealers, armed robbers and rapists) will get back on the street doing what they do, which the city is not equipped to fully handle yet.

"Hurricane Katrina is no longer an excuse and the state has a budget surplus. Indigent defense in New Orleans is unbelievable, unconstitutional, totally lacking the basic professional standards of legal representation and a mockery of what a criminal justice system should be in a western civilized nation," the judge wrote.


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Anywhere, Ohio

Republicans had such high hopes for their black candidates in 2006, but none of them panned out. Ken Blackwell, who helped them win Ohio in 2004, was supposed to be Governor, but Ohio said no thanks. Ken is far too conservative for me. I wouldn't have voted for him either. And the GOP is very concerned that a repeat of 2004 in 2008 could cost them the White House. If all other states stay the same as they did in 2004, but Ohio switches that's it for the men in red. RealClearPolitics - Articles - A Growing GOP Problem in Ohio

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Boston, Massachusetts
Gentrification is also the issue in Boston, where The Globe talks about the The Urban puzzle. Like many other big cities, the 90s were good for real estate in Boston. They tore down all the poor or subsidized housing because let's face it, prime city property can't be wasted on the poor. Generally talk of gentrification is about whites and minorities; particularly, rich whites kicking all the blacks and Latinos out so they can have their townhouses and single family mcmansions. But in Boston, it's not that simple. Winners and losers in the gentrification game are not as one-sided as you might think.

"In post-Civil Rights era Boston, Providence, Baltimore, Detroit, Chicago, and St. Louis, the situation has grown even more complicated because blacks and Latinos have made great strides -- in government and in business. The conventional view of urban politics can no longer be succinctly captured as whites dominating minorities: Those calling for gentrification are equally likely to be ethnic minorities with political and commercial capital. The long-held truism of gentrification -- namely that inner-city residents and their leadership will vocally oppose the redevelopment of their neighborhoods."
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WHY I LOVE GIZMODO

A fireplace with an iPod dock is going too far. Come on, now. Believe it or not, there are even clothes out there with iPod USB slots. I admit that my school bag has a built in iPod connection. Got it at Target. But the fireplace is too ridiculous. There has to be a regular outlet for a regular dock in the living, sitting or great room that fireplace is in. Besides, it's an atrocious looking fireplace even without the dock. Click on the link for the pic.

A Fireplace with an iPod Dock is the Last Straw - Gizmodo

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This is a car theft device that will basically break your arm if you try to steal the car and drive off. It jerks like crazy. It will seriously kill you. This has to be a homegrown device because no company would be able to buy the liability insurance on such a thing. It will literally kill you. Click on the link for the pic. Car Theft Deterrent Breaks Arms, Cracks Skulls - Gizmodo



The Hole - video powered by Metacafe

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This is complete foolishness. It should not even be legal to make this notebook design. I feel like suing the company who made this right now because if I wait they'll be out of money due to all the family members of the millions of people who die in car accidents because someone was surfing boing boing and ran a red light that have already sued them. Worst Notebook Design Ever - Gizmodo
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WHERE ARE ALL THE BLACK GOLFERS


When Tiger Woods won the Masters in 1997, everyone believed that golf would be the new basketball. They thought blacks would run onto the golf course and into the professional league, but that hasn't happened. Ten years later, Tiger is still the only black player on the PGA Tour. Ignoring the fact that Tiger doesn't even consider himself black, what's up with that? Some say those with the potential can't get the financial backing. It might also help to have a father like Earl Woods who focused his life 100% on his son's golf. How many parents of any race are doing that with their kids? Golf Digest blames the black community, saying that we have the wealth in our community to support these promising players but choose not to. The estimated expenses for being on the tour are around $60K a year. If a corporation won't sponsor you and the community won't where will the money come from?

I know a lot of black people who golf, but most of them are college educated professionals for whom golf is the networking, socializing sport of choice. It's difficult to raise your visibility and succeed in corporate America without showing up on the green whether you're a man or woman. I used to play as a kid at the Club, but then my boobs came in and it just didn't work anymore. The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. I haven't played in over 10 years, but I have an awesome rack.

Ten years and counting - Golf - Yahoo! Sports
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NEW MLK PAPERS FOUND


I might be interested in finding out what was in the notes, letters and speeches that were found in the basement of a friend of MLK after 40 years. It could just be scribbles like the ones I do when I'm in class and not listening, but it could include speeches that he was never able to give. For any faults he had, MLK was a great speaker.

The woman who found the papers in her basement wants to auction them off, but the King Estate is saying the papers belong to them and not her. They say unless she has some documentation that the papers were given to her, they belong to the Estate. Well, they were in her basement. Don't we own what's in our home unless someone can prove that it was theirs and lost or takena? That's like saying that if I find an autograph picture of Elvis in my basement, it belongs to his Estate because I can't prove it was given to me specifically.
New set of King papers to be auctioned - Yahoo! News
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GIULIANI POST

4.03.2007


Rudy gets Steve Forbes endorsement, but does that really carry any water? The really rich Republicans might like Steve Forbes business sense, but I don't think they ever took to him as a politician. I'm not completely opposed to the Flat Tax as long as the IRS is completely revamped to prevent rich people from getting around it. As Forbes Endorses Giuliani, Giuliani Endorses a Flat Tax - New York Times

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The NYPost talks about how Rudy appears to be his own worst enemy and that could be seen from is recent interview with Barbara Walters. Didn't watch it, but I'm not a Rudy fan anyway. THE END OF RUDY'S BLISS By JOHN PODHORETZ - NYPost


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He tells us all that his wife Judy will have a big role in his administration if elected for Prez. Flashbacks of Hillary and health care reform will make some a little queasy, but again, that's the least of his problems.



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First he tells us she's going to be an adviser and then he tells us to lay off her. I'm sorry, but if you are going to offer her a possible First Lady and adviser, people are going to poke into her background. Everyone knows he was carrying on with her while still married and that bringing her to his home where his wife and children were still living has alienated him from his son who made that clear when he told the media, "I get my values from my mother." She's also been married three times. He can't run away from it. wcbstv.com - Giuliani To Media: Lay Off My Wife

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Added to the growing list of things Rudy has to worry about is his knowledge of Bernard Kerik's ties to organized crime before he appointed him police commissioner. Before? Damn. Giuliani Testified He Was Briefed on Kerik in ’00 - New York Times
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HIV/AIDS POST

This NYTimes article talks about all the little organizations that supplement the big organizations in the fight against HIV/AIDS. We hear a lot about these big groups, but the little ones are sometimes dealing with the most difficult cases, including people on the street who have other addictions and problems. They have soldiers that get out there every day trying to help people be safe and deserve more recognition. For Smaller Fighters of H.I.V., Weapons Dwindle - New York Times

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How do you feel about this? States to track HIV patient names - Chicago Sun Times. Federal Health officials plan to have the names of everyone they know to be infected with HIV in all 50 states by the end of the year. AIDS advocates are very much against this for issues of patient privacy. The few states that were resisting this move are caving in because they'll lose out on health funding. I can see how some very high profile patients would fear the names getting released. In the past year all we ever hear about is another information raid or a mistake that puts everyone's private business on the net. "In 2005 in Palm Beach County, Fl the names of 6,500 HIV and AIDS patients were mistakenly e-mailed to county health workers."

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Here is another post reminding us that Asia is following right behind Africa with the HIV/AIDS problem. This is going to be particularly troublesome in China, but the idea of it doubling in just five years seems crazy, especially with all the ways available to prevent it. HIV infections on the rise in Asia - Yahoo! News


"About 8.6 million people are infected in Asia with HIV. At the current level of inadequate response, it is expected this number will rise to about 20 million in the next five years," the independent Commission on Aids in Asia said."

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I thought this was a joke when I was first hearing it, but it's not going away so I guess it's for real. The WHO is suggesting that African countries circumcise people to help curb the spread of HIV/AIDS. They say the evidence is conclusive. "removing a man's foreskin lowers his risk of contracting HIV by 60 percent. Circumcision campaigns could prevent 5.7 million new infections in Africa over the next 20 years, the agencies said." Hey, if it works then do it. I prefer circumcision anyway. The other way just looks weird (so I've been told). Circumcision Recommended in Global HIV Fight - washingtonpost.com


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This is so troubling. There are so many people in Africa taking advantage of the HIV/AIDS epidemic on that continent. Here's another one in Ethiopia. Sky News: "It Was Like Holocaust". The people who believe this holy water will cure them aren't taking any other medicine. Also, the way the scene is described with naked men, women and children chained together and being showered with water is horrifying. Doesn't that picture remind you of slaves being brought to America in the boats? It's heart breaking.
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A SOLUTION TO CHINA'S AGING POPULATION

When you think about the crisis facing America because 23 billion baby boomers are retiring over the next five years, it is nothing compared to China. They already have several hundred billion people and many of them are getting old. What are they going to do with them? english.eastday.com: China facing serious challenges with growing aging population

Gizmodo found this solution and I like it. It's a robot that roams the streets of China and picks up the dead and dormant. However, I have the same concerns that Gizmodo does. Robot Picks up the Dead or Dormant. Wait, Dormant?? - Gizmodo First, I'm concerned about the dormant. Is the machine able to distinguish them from the dead? I would recommend they come up with a different robot for the dormant. This robot could kill them. Second, why are they doing this in front of the little bits? Should kids really be seeing this?

Either way, I think it's efficient genius.
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TESTING OUR CHILDREN

There is a debate going on in academic and political circles about universal testing of pre-schoolers. I agree with it. As much as people whine about these tests being biased against some in favor of others, we still need to take them. Why? Because the real world is biased against some in favor of others, and if your kid is in that "some" area and not the "others" area, you need to prepare them for that. If they are testing, you'll at least what you have to do to prepare them for the real world.

The National Reporting system has been testing Head Start preschoolers since 2003, but educators are against it. This testing was Bush's idea and one of the only ones he's made that I agree with. No, I'm not going go on about the bigotry of low expectations, but we do need to hold our children to the highest standard possible, not just what we feel they safely reach. And if the test is poorly designed, then design a better one, but don't just chuck them because you don't like the results. Preschoolers' Test May Be Suspended - washingtonpost.com


And what the hell with Illinois short-changing their kids? The state relaxed a rule under the No Child Left Behind Act that requires a school to send in reading and math tests scores so it can be graded on effectiveness. As a result, almost 300,000 reading and math tests taken by Illinois students at 53 schools in 2006 weren't counted because the schools didn't want to get a failure warning. According to the Chi Tribune, these 300K are mostly low-income and minority students. Schools who get a failure warning can face sanctions, such as being forced to offering students the chance to transfer to other schools. So they sacrificed their kids intelligence to avoid being told they have to do a better job. How sad is that?
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SLAVERY, APOLOGIES & GOOGLE ADS


As any person would, I was attracted to the title of this article, BLOG CRITICS: It's Time For Blacks To Get Over Slavery. Who wouldn't be? I've actually written for Blog Critics before too. Some guy named Paotie writes in response to Walter E. Williams essay, Regrets for Slavery. Here's a snippet of Williams essay:

"The General Assembly's statement of regret for slavery means absolutely nothing to me. If anything, it's nothing less than a cheap insult and capitulation of white delegates to black hustlers. Possibly, the whites who voted in support of the declaration were mau-maued into it or they felt guilt over our history of slavery. In any case, they should know that their actions mean little in dealing with the day-to-day plight of many black Virginians -- which has nothing to do with slavery."

Here's a snippet of Paotie's response:

"I know something about discrimination and oppression, though, and probably more so than the vast majority of blacks in this country: I’m deaf. You won’t see me, however, pining for legislators to issue apologies for the treatment of all deaf people, either. Once upon a time in ancient Sparta, deaf babies and children were killed simply for being born deaf; in later centuries in this country, deaf people were shuttled off into “institutions” never heard from again; and in more recent times, deaf people were not allowed to vote, drive, find gainful employment and so forth and so on. Even as recently as the 1970’s, a common prescription for children born deaf was simply to have them placed into asylums, and rarely offered the opportunity to become full-fledged humans. In short, the dehumanization of deaf people throughout multiple civilizations has long been ignored, and a lack of apologetic legislative decrees shows insensitivity and further dehumanizing of all deaf people – at least, if we use Mr. Williams’ logic."

But here is the reason I'm posting. The Google Ads connected with Paotie's article:
Black Black Women (it says black twice, why I don't know)
Black Singles Photos
Slavery in the Sudan
African American Careers

Sorry, but I find Google Ads hilarious; especially so when the topic they are trying to match is something horrendous like Genocide or Tsunami victims. The ads are so inappropriate, it's hilarious. I know I have a dark sense of humor.
On a more serious note, Paotie's response would have been considerable if he had actually known what Williams was saying. He got Williams all wrong.
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MARSDEN IS THE NEW COULTER


If you heard a female television political pundit said the following: "Maybe [Pakistani cricket fans] should focus less on cricket and a little more on hygiene," who would you think said it? The first name that comes to mind is She Who Will Not Be Named (SWWNBN). But alas, these are not the words of the shepherd for the devil, but her possible replacement on the political scene.


SWWNBN is on her way out. She's no longer very interesting and the media is finally catching on to the game she plays by hurling some disgusting insult and getting super pub so her books go up on the Amazon bestseller list. Even the haters, her base, don't seem as excited about her as usual. Since she has no real substance, all she had was surface. That surface has been worn down and people are looking for another hate peddler who loves publicity and doesn't care that she's going to hell when she dies.

In walks Rachel Marsden, who is the sayer of the quote above, who has been showing up on FOXNews a lot more often lately. But Rachel is going to be more entertaining than SWWNBC because she is Canadian, likes to post sexy photos of herself on her website, has a stalker background and has made questionable rape accusations. Don't think this will get in the way of her hurling insults and passing judgment because people like her specialize in hypocrisy. At least she looks better than SWWNBN, who is very likely an alien. Either way, you can expect to see Rachel, who I will from now on refer to as SWWNBC Nano, a lot.

Rachel Marsden - Official Website
Keith Olbermann Versus Rachel Marsden: Who's The Bigger Stalker? / Jossip
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FELON VOTING RIGHTS


I've made my feelings clear on convicted felons voting. I am unequivocally against felons in prison or on probation being allowed to vote. Their time has not been served until they are off probation.

I've heard the argument that after time is served and all that blah, blah, blah. Okay, I'm willing to accept that non-violent criminals can petition for their voting rights after they have finished their probation, but not violent criminals. People who mug, assault, rape, molest children and kill shouldn't get the right to vote again. For all the rights they stole from their victims (such as the right to be alive, the right to their own property and bodies), to take this one right away from them is not unfair.

And the fact that it's a hassle to petition for getting the right back, who gives a s&#*? It was kind of a hassle for their victims and their families to deal with what they've done to them. To suggest something is unfair to felons because it's a hassle is nothing more than a waste of breath. WTF with wanting to make things easier on rapists and murderers? Groups like the ACLU don't even agree with some who say they can get their right restored after they pay whatever restitution they owe to victims. To them, the person who committed the crime should not be the least inconvenienced. To hell with the victims. The ACLU doesn't care about those people.

If you think that letting a few felons get to vote won't really make a difference, think again. If you look at a state like Florida, where the governor is trying to restore felon voting rights, you're looking at almost 1 million votes. Florida Governor Is Hoping to Restore Felon Voting Rights - New York Times
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KIDS & CELL PHONES

4.02.2007

Does your little bit want a cellphone? Cellphones and children - New York Times. All my nieces and nephews over the age of 10 have one. When little Princess Erin got her phone at the age of 10, she would sit and stare at it as if she could will it to ring. My sister & brother-in-law have spoiled those girls so much it's ridiculous. My sister used to be a stay at home Mom, but now that the baby is in school all day and has her little after-school activities, Noreen decided to get a part time job. She works at a Vet Clinic (wouldn't you love that?). She decided to get Erin (Nikki's had a cell for a long time) one of those phones Disney Mobile phones which are pretty cool.

When I was 10, I specialized in losing stuff, so I wouldn't have done well with a cell even if they were available back then. But Erin seems responsible enough. If it makes her more safe and let's my sister work in peace, I'm for it.

And you know blackberries are next. Look at this little bit. She is syncing all her play dates for the month to make sure they don't conflict with her "Mommy & Me" classes. If they do conflict, Mommy will have to take a raincheck because princess has to focus on her socializing and networking.
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OBAMA POST

Here are all the Obama articles I came upon today without even looking for them.
This article is actually about Obama's top poli adviser, David Axelrod. He's certainly getting a lot omre pub than his counterpounts for Clinton, Edwards, McCain, Guiliani, or...the list goes on. You know what I mean. He doesn't appear as crazy as James Carville, so I'm not really interested. NYTimes: Obama's Narrator

Are we getting sick of hearing about New Hampshire yet? I know I am. There's only going to be more of it as we get closer to the primaries. Obama has already been there a few times and plans on going back. I'm sure the residents of the state are already sick of all the plastered smiles and sound bytes. Politico gives Obama props for at least trying to switch it up a bit.
"While Obama is using elements of the traditional campaign, supporters and opponents alike say he's doing something new, devoting less energy to the care and feeding of local officials while he works harder to engage the state's population at large. His gamble is spurring a quiet debate over whether, even as Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) pledges to campaign "the New Hampshire way," Obama can win his own way."
Check out the pic. There was a Winter storm going on. Ugh.Obama Bucks New Hampshire Way - Politico.com


Lynn Sweet is the Sun Times designated writer, blogger, eater, sleeper, drinker and breather of all things Obama. Here, she takes a look at is fundraiser operation. I wonder if she explains why he's letting Hillary beat him up against the head with a steel pole? Sweet column: '08 rivals dash for campaign cash. A look at the Obama fundraising operation.
Here she talks about some of the mistakes he's made and how they are beginning to pile up. She's probably hating on the rest of the media because no one else wants to write about this stuff. Obama's gaffes start to pile up: Lynn Sweet
Chicago's real newspaper, The Chi Tribune, which just announced its new owner is Sam Zell and my Chicago Cubs are going to be sold (gasp!), paints a Portrait of a pragmatist in Obama. Isn't this like one of the best things a politician can be called. Pragmatic makes one sound reasonable and even-handed. Politicians go out of their way to call themselves pragmatic, but Obama has the city's main paper doing it for him. Way to go.
The Hill covers Obama's under-the-radar relationship with the lobbyists in D.C. TheHill.com - Obama’s K Street projectWhen he came to Washington, he was very quick to talk ill of the influence peddlers on The Hill and has prohibited his campaign from accepting contributions from them as well as the PACs. However, since most of the best lobbyists also double as Democratic operatives, he is working with lobbyists in a way int erms of campaign and policy support. He needs to. Clinton has her hands deep in this game and she's clearly ahead of him.
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TEACHERS DROP HOLOCAUST FOR MUSLIM STUDENTS

Maybe I'm going crazy or blind or something because it seems to me that this article is saying that teachers in the UK are no longer going to discuss the Holocaust, the biggest disaster of the 20th century, because it offends Muslims. Teachers drop the Holocaust to avoid offending Muslims the Daily Mail. Tell me I'm wrong? Because I need to be wrong. If I'm right, I will have to personally fly to Great Britain and slap every single person involved in this decision.


The Holocaust is a historical fact. I've met survivors and heard their story (I went to grade school in Skokie, IL). There is sufficient document (including video) and admissions on the part of captured Nazi's that this happened. So they can't argue that it isn't true. And why would Muslims be upset about the Holocaust. It had nothing to do with them. If the Germans don't care, who else matters?

You can debate the issues involved all you want, but you can't ignore it and you can't stop talking about it because it forces people to learn of something they'd rather not believe happened.
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LITERARY BLACK


In the Minneapolis the war against the N-Word is starting to take innocent victims. Some in the St. Louis Park area want to ban "Huckleberry Finn" because the word is used in that book; it's actually used quite a lot. Made me wonder about Mark Twain in the same way I wonder why Martin Scorsese can't make a movie without someone using the N-Word at least twice. Aside from that, this book is a classic and it would be a shame if it was taken off the list of must-reads.

These parents that want the book banned are worried about their kids. It makes them feel bad within the class setting with white students. I understand that. I went to a majority white high school and I remember feeling uncomfortable when we read To Kill A Mockingbird, but the way my teacher handled it by focusing on the positives and painting Atticus Finch as the hero that he was, I ended up feeling proud.

If the parents are upset about the words, just have the school promise to use it to prompt a discussion of the word and take the opportunity to teach kids about its ugliness. 'Huckleberry Finn' wins a first round in St. Louis Park


I was attracted to this book because of the cover art. It's such a sweet picture, but because the baby has her back to you, you know there is something not so sweet going on. After doing a little research, I've heard that this book is awesome!

The story follows four generations of women who triumph over lives "plagued with unspeakable abuse and pain." It looks at the impact of domestic violence has on women and children in a family, but also shows how the old fashioned, traditional family values helped them survive and keep faith. The reviews have been pretty incredible. Of course this will incite some anger on behalf of the "always picking on the black male" crowd, but don't let that keep you from reading it.

I'm not allowed to buy any books right now because I have a stack of books about 10 feet tall that I haven't read yet, but I did put it in my wish list for when I'm allowing myself to purchase books again. Amazon.com: Color Me Butterfly: Books: L. Y. Marlow
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PROGRESS IN CHINA w/PROPERTY RIGHTS


Although Private Property Rights aren't at the top of the list of things China needs to change, it is a good sign. Any additional rights given to the people of China (only the middle class in this situation) only makes them want more and gives them the reinforcement they need to keep going. This is a step towards the acknowledgement of private ownership and most importantly, privacy. Now if only they can give these rights to everyone so they don't create more class wars, we'd really be getting somewhere.
China Approves Property Law, Strengthening Its Middle Class - New York Times
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LET'S GO TO THE VIDEOTAPE!

Do you remember a few weeks ago when I blogged about this fool who turned his studio apartment into the Star Trek Voyager deck after his wife left him and went bankrupt because he put it all on this credit card. POLITOPICS: Stuff people should be too embarrassed to show. He then built himself back up by creating a business out of this and charging other losers to turn their homes in a SciFi fantasy, which will hopefully take their mind off the fact that they have no girlfirend.

Well, forget the pictures. We have video as the freak man who started it all gives us a tour of his entire studio/space deck/control room or whatever its called. He installed sound effects and everything. Hat Tip: Gizmodo.
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EDWARDS TAKES ISSUE WITH OBAMA

ABC News discusses Presidential candidate John Edwards and his disappointment with Presidential candidate Barack Obama's recent statement that if Bush vetoes the current war funding bill, which he has said he would, Congress will send him another with the provisions he wants. According to the AP, Obama explained this by saying that no lawmaker "wants to play chicken with our troops."

Edwards thinks Congress, which he is no longer a part of, should take this stand and work to override Bush's veto instead of adjusting the bill to meet Bush's needs. What do you think? I want to agree with Edwards because it's time to stand up to this administration which has made one bad decision after another regarding this war. However, who suffers if a cat fight ensues? Our soldiers are already underfunded as can be seen in the fact that they don't have the proper body armour and some of them are being forced to pay for their armour out of their own money. Wouldn't a refusal to compromise but them in even a worse position?

Political Radar: Edwards Camp Takes Issue with Obama on Nort Forcing "Showdown" with Bush on Iraq
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ABOLISHING BILINGUAL EDUCATION


I guess Newt was getting a little angry at all the other presidential candidates getting the attention, so he went and said something stupid. Or maybe it's not so stupid, but the way he said it was. Gingrich said that bilingual education is the same as ghetto speak. The word he used was "the language of living in the ghetto," which I'm not sure what that means, but it makes me think of a Stevie Wonder song.

He says we should replace bilingual education with an immersion in English. I actually agree with that. Small children are able to pick up languages amazingly fast. Although it would be a difficult beginning, if we immersed them in English, they would pick it up no problem. They'll keep their Spanish as well, because that is what will be spoken in their home. If you read the article, some experts believe that bilingual education is the most effective way to teach kids Spanish.

When I was in college, I took Italian 101. The teacher walked in and said "after I finish this statement I'm saying now, I will only speak in Italian for the rest of the semester. This is the best way for you to learn." We all laughed, but she never spoke English again and I cried and dropped the class. Granted I was 18, beyond the age of easy language learning, but the fear of not getting an "A" made me punk out.

Some more of what Gingrich said this weekend:

"The government should quit mandating that various documents be printed in any one of 700 languages depending on who randomly shows up."

"Citizenship requires passing a test on American history in English. If that's true, then we do not have to create ballots in any language except English."

As usual, some people have taken issue. Abolish bilingual education, Gingrich urges - CNN.com
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YOU KNOW YOU'RE IN TROUBLE WHEN


You know you're in trouble when you're in the hospital and the hospital has to call 911 to save you. At least there are ambulances nearby to take you to a real hospital, but if you'd known the hospital you're at can only service you if nothing goes wrong, you probably wouldn't have gone there for major surgery in the first place, right? Some Hospitals Call 911 to Save Their Patients - New York Times
Maybe this is something people should be informed of. I'm fortunate to live in the D.C. Metro area where most of the hospital are prepared to handle any emergency, but for people way out in the suburbs or in rural areas, they might not have a choice. Despite that, every hospital should have at least one doctor present at all times.
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24 - DAY SIX NOT GOING SO WELL


In USA Today, Robert Bianco rails on 24, my favorite show. He says Day 6 is the worst day yet, not in terms of tragedy, but in terms of being the worst season yet.April 2, 2007: The day '24' stood still - USATODAY.com
I'm a little confused about how I feel. 24 has been my favorite show almost since it began, even though I was one of the skeptics who said the idea was ridiculous and would never fly. I've suspended a great deal of disbelief in order to enjoy the show and we don't need to go into how President Palmer was supposed to be my baby's daddy until someone shot him in the neck. (takes a moment to weep)

I don't understand why they have the Ricky Schroeder character in there now. They showed more of him than Jack in the last two episodes and I don't like that. Unlike Jack, who does what he does because he's a complete psycho, Ricky's character just seems like a jackass. Besides, I watch the show for Jack now that President Palmer is gone. I was glad they got rid of Palmer Nano (via a coma) who was probably the worst black president ever. And I'm really disappointed we aren't seeing more of Regina King, who I thought was going to be a major character this season. I like her a lot.

It looks like a season that is trying to fill some hours of the day to make the full 24. But like most people (according to the ratings), I'll still watch faithfully. I'm a couple of episodes behind because I have class Monday nights and have to DVR it, but I won't desert it. Not yet. Now if they bring Jack's daughter Kim back, I might have to let 24 go.
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