Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Little New Year's Music

Dan Fogelberg's Same Old Lang Syne



An encore to one of his concerts. Starts about thirty seconds in.

The Medal of Honor

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Private First Class Alejandro R. Renteria Ruiz


Citation:

When his unit was stopped by a skillfully camouflaged enemy pillbox, he displayed conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty. His squad, suddenly brought under a hail of machinegun fire and a vicious grenade attack, was pinned down. Jumping to his feet, Pfc. Ruiz seized an automatic rifle and lunged through the flying grenades and rifle and automatic fire for the top of the emplacement. When an enemy soldier charged him, his rifle jammed. Undaunted, Pfc. Ruiz whirled on his assailant and clubbed him down. Then he ran back through bullets and grenades, seized more ammunition and another automatic rifle, and again made for the pillbox. Enemy fire now was concentrated on him, but he charged on, miraculously reaching the position, and in plain view he climbed to the top. Leaping from 1 opening to another, he sent burst after burst into the pillbox, killing 12 of the enemy and completely destroying the position. Pfc. Ruiz's heroic conduct, in the face of overwhelming odds, saved the lives of many comrades and eliminated an obstacle that long would have checked his unit's advance.

Pfc. Ruiz: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes




http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/living/living_war_wwii.html

There are over a hundred living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice.

Marines Who Gave Their Lives to Stop Suicide Bomber Awarded Navy Cross

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New Year's Eve is often one for reflection of the year gone by and what it all means. Here's a story to help put things in perspective:

Marine Corporal Jonathan Yale and Lance Corporal Jordan Haerter were standing guard duty at the main gate to Joint Security Station Nasser in Ramadi. Guard duty is often boring, sometimes thankless. But last April 22nd,the valor and courage of these two Marines was unmistakable. From the LA Times:

The sun had barely risen when the two sentries spotted a 20-foot-long truck headed toward the gate, weaving with increasing speed through the concrete barriers. Two Iraqi police officers assigned to the gate ran for their lives. So did several Iraqi police on the adjacent street.

Yale and Haerter tried to wave off the truck, but it kept coming. They opened fire, Yale with a machine gun, Haerter with an M-16. Their bullets peppered the radiator and windshield. The truck slowed but kept rolling.

A few dozen feet from the gate, the truck exploded. Investigators found that it was loaded with 2,000 pounds of explosives and that its driver, his hand on a "dead-man switch," was determined to commit suicide and slaughter Marines and Iraqi police.

The thunderous explosion rocked much of Ramadi, interrupting the morning call to prayers from the many mosques. A nearby mosque and a home were flattened. The blast ripped a crater 5 feet deep and 20 feet across into the street.


An investigation by the highest ranking Marine in Iraq, Major General John Kelly, prompted him to nominate both men for the Navy Cross.

When Marine technicians restored a damaged security camera, the images were undeniable.

While Iraqi police fled, Haerter and Yale had never flinched and never stopped firing as the Mercedes truck -- the same model used in the Beirut bombing -- sped directly toward them.

Without their steadfastness, the truck would probably have penetrated the compound before it exploded, and 50 or more Marines and Iraqis would have been killed. The incident happened in just six seconds.

"No time to talk it over; no time to call the lieutenant; no time to think about their own lives or even the American and Iraqi lives they were protecting," Kelly said. "More than enough time, however, to do their duty. They never hesitated or tried to escape."

Kelly nominated the two for the Navy Cross, the second-highest award for combat bravery for Marines and sailors. Even by the standards expected of Marine "grunts," their bravery was exceptional, Kelly said.


As you think of auld lang syne and the best and the worst of 2008, raise a glass to Marines Haerter and Yale, and say a prayer for their families. They were two of the best!

Hat tip 2H9
Cross posted at Say Anything

Quote du jour

Hope smiles on the threshold of the year to come, whispering that it will be happier.

-Alfred Lord Tennyson

A Little New Year's Music

As a public service to all you gitter pickers: John Fahey with a little instruction:

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Naughty Mercedes Ad

A naughty bit of drama from the folks at Mercedes Benz:



Hat tip Transsylvania Phoenix

Moonbat's MidEast Medical Misadventure

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If the enemy of my enemy is my friend,
Then the friend of my friend’s enemy is…
former Democratic Representative Cynthia McKinney!



When not provoking the Capitol Police, on duty to protect her, into tussles over whether or not she has to show them “any stinking badges”, this former jewel of the Democratic Party is all about giving aid and comfort to the enemy…of Israel.

Yesterday the Palestinian News Network (no, not CNN, the other one!) reported that the so called “Free Gaza Movement” was sending supplies to the Gaza strip:

On board the SS Dignity are three to four tons of urgently needed medical supplies. Dr. Khalid at Gaza City’s Al Shifa Hospital told the crew on Saturday that the “majority of cases are critical shrapnel wounds from Israeli gunboats and helicopters, with an approximate 80 percent who will not survive.”
Among the Free Gaza organizers is Eliza Ernshire who said, “We have calls for surgeons willing to go into Gaza and work there throughout this crisis. The doctors inside are exhausted and unable to cope with the number of wounded.”
On board the ship expected to set sail on Monday are four physicians. Among them is Dr. Elena Theoharous, a surgeon and member of Cypriot parliament. Former United States Congresswoman and Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney will also be making the voyage. And local hero, Al Jazeera correspondent formerly imprisoned in Guantanamo, Sami Al Hajj, is also expected.


Because medical supplies without your own moonbat are like a day without unicorns!

Today, it was reported that the best laid plans of moonbats and men are wont to go awry! This according to Al Jazeera:

A small boat, damaged as it tried to break the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip, has arrived in the Lebanese port of Tyre.
The Dignity started taking on water after it was hit by an Israeli naval vessel as it approached the Israeli coast with its cargo of medical aid.
The Free Gaza Movement, which organised the attempt to reach the territory , said their boat was "rammed" and shots were fired when at least four Israeli vessels confronted them in international waters.
Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for Israel’s foreign ministry, denied there had been any shooting but said that the ships had made "physical contact".


Despite the fact that there's a big difference between "making contact" and "shots were fired", I suspect I'd come down on the side of the Israelis on this one. Mainly, because I believe that if "shots were fired", the boat would not have returned from whence it came, but would have received an all expense paid trip to Davy Jones' Locker!

Hat tips Gateway Pundit, Sweetness & Light
Cross posted at Say Anything

Update: Daily Kos has article "Israel tries to Kill Cynthia McKinney..." which relies heavily on antisemitic Stormfront for pics and details.

Hat tip The Jawa Report

Quote du jour

A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on.

-Carl Sandburg

Monday, December 29, 2008

Quote du jour

I'm very puzzled by the nexus between the current downturn and concern about global warming. Given that we were told we had to immediately cut back on carbon emissions (even before sustainable alternative energies are in place), largely by curbing our lavish energy-dependent lifestyles, why then all the concern about stimuli and global depression? Surely, the world right now is sort of what the radical Gorists wanted to see, since the current cutback in gasoline usage, and general economic slowdown are radically restricting the burning of fossil fuels in a manner that even the most optimistic green utopian could hardly have envisioned just few years ago? In other words, in the booming 2004-6 years, radical suggested scale-backs would have probably led to something akin to what we are experiencing now? So why the gloom instead of headlines blaring—"The Planet Continues to Green—as Archaic Consumption Practices Erode Further!"

-Victor Davis Hanson

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Music For a Winter's Night

Noel Paul Stookey - A Christmas Dinner

"Before I Thought it in My Own Mind..."

Like, where else would you think it? Heh.
A humorous look at the liberals' answer to Sarah Palin: Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg!



Hat tip Hot Air

Cross posted at Say Anything

Quote du jour

Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see.

-C. S. Lewis

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Redneck Twelve Days of Christmas

2009 Pinups for Vets Calendar

2009 is nearly upon us, so what better way to start the new year, than with a new calendar? And what better calendar, than one from our friends at Pinups for Vets?

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Gina Elise, in addition to offering calendars, is offering a "Kiss a Vet" t-shirt this year, too! Proceeds of the project go to raise funds for veterans hospitals and to support hospitalized veterans, (not to mention the morale boost that comes to those when Gina Elise personally delivers calendars to hospitalized and recovering veterans).

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Order your calendar now, or contribute to have one sent to one of our ill or wounded troops (or both?). Proof Positive heartily supports the efforts of Pinups for Vets. Carry on, Gina Elise!

Quote du jour

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

-Leonardo da Vinci

Friday, December 26, 2008

Obama Not Met With Cheering or Applause from Marines During Christmas Dinner

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"Met with silence" is how Gateway Pundit describes Obama visiting Marines in Hawaii during their Christmas dinner:


FROM ABC NEWS' SUNLEN MILLER IN HAWAII:

President-elect Obama stopped by the Marine Corps base in Hawaii Kaneche Bay where servicemen and -women were eating Christmas dinner in Kailua Thursday evening.

“Just wanted to say hi, hey guys,” Obama said as he walked into the Anderson dining hall which was decked out in Christmas decorations.

The diners represented seven military units -- Marine and Navy -- some of whom were joined by their families for Christmas dinner.

As Obama entered the room, it was absent of the regular fanfare of cheering and clapping. The diners were polite, staying seated at their respective tables and waited for the president-elect to come to them to stand up.


Let's contrast that with GWB visiting the troops during their Thanksgiving dinner in 2003:

Paul Bremer, the top US civilian administrator in Iraq, who was on a scheduled visit to the troops, told them he was going to read a message from the president.
But he then announced he would defer to the most senior person present - Mr Bush's cue to appear.

"I was just looking for a warm meal somewhere," Mr Bush said. "Thanks for inviting me to dinner ... I can't think of a finer group of folks to have Thanksgiving dinner with than you all."

Mr Bush told cheering troops he brought a message on behalf of America: "We thank you for your service, we are proud of you and America stands solidly behind you."


I would imagine that our resident trolls will be screaming "ODS" before the "1"s and "0"s are dry on this post. It sems they are unable to process any news that reflects badly on Mr. Obama in any way shape or form. The derangement is all theirs!

Cross Posted at Say Anything

Pinch Hitting for Enya: Nat King Cole

Friday Night Babe

Tonight's FNB is Kirsty Gallacher...just in case Santa didn't fill your stockings last night!

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Quote du jour

Joys too exquisite to last, And yet more exquisite when past.

-James Montgomery

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Trivia

The answer is, the song "Silver Bells" was first introduced in the movie:
D)The Lemon Drop Kid
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The Lemon Drop Kid was a 1951 comedy based on a short story by Damon Runyon, starring Bob Hope.

Christmas Trivia

Here's a little trivia question for you:

The song "Silver Bells" was introduced in what movie:

A) Miracle on 34th St. (1947)

B) Holiday Inn (1942)

C) White Christmas (1954)

D) The Lemon Drop Kid (1951)

I'll post the answer in an hour (if you don't feel like Googling!)

White Christmas - Holiday Inn



Bing Crosby and Marjorie Reynolds

A Little Christmas Music

Quote du jour

How many observe Christ's birthday! How few, his precepts! O! 'tis easier to keep Holidays than Commandments.

-Benjamin Franklin

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

James Taylor- Go Tell it on the Mountain

A little extra music for Christmas Eve...

David Spade Gives $100,000 to Phoenix Cops

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Could give a whole new meaning to Just Shoot Me!


David Spade is a class act!

LOS ANGELES - The Phoenix Police Department has gotten some high-powered goodies courtesy of actor David Spade.

The one-time Phoenix resident donated $100,000 so that the department can buy approximately 50 AR-15 rifles.

Spade said he wanted to make the donation after seeing a TV news report about Phoenix officers having to buy their own rifles. Spade grew up in the Phoenix area and graduated from Arizona State University


Let's all give Mr. Spade a round of applause for his generosity and for giving Phoenix cops a break!

Hat tip The Jawa Report
Cross posted at Say Anything

The Medal of Honor

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Private William K. Ross


Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at risk of life above and beyond the call of duty near St. Jacques, France. At 11:30 a.m. on 30 October 1944, after his company had lost 55 out of 88 men in an attack on an entrenched. full-strength German company of elite mountain troops, Pvt. Ross placed his light machinegun 10 yards in advance of the foremost supporting riflemen in order to absorb the initial impact of an enemy counterattack. With machinegun and small-arms fire striking the earth near him, he fired with deadly effect on the assaulting force and repelled it. Despite the hail of automatic fire and the explosion of rifle grenades within a stone's throw of his position, he continued to man his machinegun alone, holding off 6 more German attacks. When the eighth assault was launched, most of his supporting riflemen were out of ammunition. They took positions in echelon behind Pvt. Ross and crawled up, during the attack, to extract a few rounds of ammunition from his machinegun ammunition belt. Pvt. Ross fought on virtually without assistance and, despite the fact that enemy grenadiers crawled to within 4 yards of his position in an effort to kill him with handgrenades, he again directed accurate and deadly fire on the hostile force and hurled it back. After expending his last rounds, Pvt. Ross was advised to withdraw to the company command post, together with 8 surviving riflemen, but, as more ammunition was expected, he declined to do so. The Germans launched their last all-out attack, converging their fire on Pvt. Ross in a desperate attempt to destroy the machinegun which stood between them and a decisive breakthrough. As his supporting riflemen fixed bayonets for a last-ditch stand, fresh ammunition arrived and was brought to Pvt. Ross just as the advance assault elements were about to swarm over his position. He opened murderous fire on the oncoming enemy; killed 40 and wounded 10 of the attacking force; broke the assault single-handedly, and forced the Germans to withdraw. Having killed or wounded at least 58 Germans in more than 5 hours of continuous combat and saved the remnants of his company from destruction, Pvt. Ross remained at his post that night and the following day for a total of 36 hours. His actions throughout this engagement were an inspiration to his comrades and maintained the high traditions of the military service.

Pvt. Ross: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes




http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/living/living_war_wwii.html

There are over a hundred living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice.

A Little Holiday Cheer

Peter, Paul, and Mary - A' Soalin'

The Twelve Days of Global Warming

The group Minnesotans for Global Warming ( M4GW.com )have some outstanding parodies on their site. Having recently migrated from snowy Ohio, I can understand the sentiment! Here's one with a holiday motif!



Hat tip Rob Port, of SayAnything.com
Guest Hosting The Scott Hennen Show,
WZFG AM1100 (Fargo/Moorhead)

Dialogue du Jour

Ronald Reagan at a December 20, 1983 White House press conference:

Q: What do you want for Christmas?


The President: What do I want for Christmas? You know what I'm going to say.


Q: What?


The President: Peace.


Q: Well, what do you want in a box?


The President: If you could get it in a box, I'll take it in a box.


Hat tip: The American Thinker

A Little Christmas Music

Quote du jour

We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.

-Thornton Wilder

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Kerry Swift Boat Supporter Guilty of Possessing Child Porn

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Depravity knows no party lines.


Remember Wade Sanders? He was one of the "band of brothers"--Swift Boat veterans who supported John Kerry's presidential campaign and appeared onstage at the 2004 Democratic National Convention before Kerry's "reporting for duty" speech.

On the campaign trail, Sanders was one of Kerry's nastiest surrogates. In August 2004, he likened the president to a "trapped animal." In September, he compared Karl Rove and Swift Boat Veterans for Truth chief John O'Neill to Josef Goebbels. He repeatedly referred to the president and his men as "chicken hawks," an especially nasty term because it is slang for a child molester as well as a derisive term for a nonveteran who favors a strong defense.


Well, well, well! A man of such moral outrage and it turns out his own feet are made of clay!

Sanders acknowledged in court that he had "possessed computer files containing 600 images of minors, including a 21-minute video that depicted girls engaging in sex acts with an adult man."


He claims he was doing "research for an article", but decided to plead guilty since he "technically" was. Doesn't sound very much like the righteous indignation of the falsely accused, now, does it?

Perhaps the partisans who want to pretend that evil is the sole province of only one party will look at individuals like Sanders and Bernie Ward, and know that depravity transcends politics. If they ever come in contact with reality, anyway!

Hat tip James Taranto
Cross posted at Say Anything

A Little Christmas Music

Mea Culpa

A few days ago, I wrote
this officially marks my move to Pacific Time on the postings.
I was under the mistaken impression that the posts were synced to the time on my computer. But, since I see my midnight plus one postings showing up a little after nine here on the Left Coast, I realize the time is synced with the server on the East Coast.

Sorry for any confusion! You know what they say about assumptions! Mea culpa!

Redneck Reindeer

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Sandy Jamieson has an unconventional note card for for those who see Santa more as a rugged individualist than jolly old elf!

And remember! There are twelve days of Christmas, so, if you order now, you could probably get some in time for Epiphany!

Hat tip Michelle Malkin

Quote du jour

When we recall the past, we usually find that it is the simplest things - not the great occasions - that in retrospect give off the greatest glow of happiness.

-Bob Hope

Monday, December 22, 2008

"We Liberals are Personally Stingy"

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The real Scrooges revealed!


Nicholas Kristof, in a Saturday NYT editorial entitled "Bleeding Heart Tightwads", discovers what many conservatives had known for a long time: Liberals are more generous with Other People's Money than their own!

Liberals show tremendous compassion in pushing for generous government spending to help the neediest people at home and abroad. Yet when it comes to individual contributions to charitable causes, liberals are cheapskates.

Arthur Brooks, the author of a book on donors to charity, “Who Really Cares,” cites data that households headed by conservatives give 30 percent more to charity than households headed by liberals. A study by Google found an even greater disproportion: average annual contributions reported by conservatives were almost double those of liberals.

Other research has reached similar conclusions. The “generosity index” from the Catalogue for Philanthropy typically finds that red states are the most likely to give to nonprofits, while Northeastern states are least likely to do so.

The upshot is that Democrats, who speak passionately about the hungry and homeless, personally fork over less money to charity than Republicans — the ones who try to cut health insurance for children.

“When I started doing research on charity,” Mr. Brooks wrote, “I expected to find that political liberals — who, I believed, genuinely cared more about others than conservatives did — would turn out to be the most privately charitable people. So when my early findings led me to the opposite conclusion, I assumed I had made some sort of technical error. I re-ran analyses. I got new data. Nothing worked. In the end, I had no option but to change my views.”


And it's not just American liberals, either!

Something similar is true internationally. European countries seem to show more compassion than America in providing safety nets for the poor, and they give far more humanitarian foreign aid per capita than the United States does. But as individuals, Europeans are far less charitable than Americans.

Americans give sums to charity equivalent to 1.67 percent of G.N.P., according to a terrific new book, “Philanthrocapitalism,” by Matthew Bishop and Michael Green. The British are second, with 0.73 percent, while the stingiest people on the list are the French, at 0.14 percent.


Kristoff credits religion as the "essential reason" conservatives give more. He says his column is an attempt to shame liberals into giving more.
"Are there no poor houses?" asked the liberals in reply... Heh.

Hat tip Rush
Cross Posted at Say Anything

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas



Judy Garland - Meet Me In St. Louis

Quote du jour

It is only with one's heart that one can see clearly. What is essential is invisible to the eye.

-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Little Christmas Music

The Poetry Corner

Methusaleh ate what they piled on his plate
And never, as people do now,
Did he note the amount of the calorie count,
He ate it because it was chow.

He wasn’t disturbed as at dinner he sat,
Devouring a roast or a pie,
To think it was loaded with granular fat,
Or a couple of vitamins shy.

He joyfully chewed on all kinds of food,
Unmindful of troubles or fears,
Lest his health might be hurt by some fancy dessert.
So he died – after nine hundred years.

-Anon.

Quote du jour

The happiness of the domestic fireside is the first boon of Heaven; and it is well it is so, since it is that which is the lot of the mass of mankind.

-Thomas Jefferson,

Saturday, December 20, 2008

A Pre-Inaugural Invocation

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I don't normally discuss religion in the context of blogging, but there has been a small tempest in a teapot over Obama's selection of Pastor Rick Warren of Saddleback Church to give the invocation at next month's inaugural events.
Aside from the hypocrisy of pouring vitriol on Pastor Rick because of his views on "gay marriage" while simultaneously excusing Obama who holding the identical view, invited him, I wanted to address the twits who think that criticism of Obama is somehow equivalent to the rabid moonbats' Bush Derangement Syndrome, or that conservatives have something against Obama based solely on his race or skin color, with a pre -inaugural invocation. And since Proverbs 21:1 tells us:
The king's heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

I would invite Christians throughout the world to pray this with me, asking God to grant to Obama the very same things that we wanted for President Bush, or any US President:

Almighty God, We ask your blessing upon the next President of the United States.
Give him wisdom beyond his years.
Give him the courage to do what is right and not merely that which is expedient.
Grant that he might always speak the truth without guile.
Give him strength, as the leader of the leading democracy on this world, to stand firm against tyranny and oppression.
Grant him humility that he might see that everything he has is a gift from you.
Grant that he might be a champion for justice and righteousness.
Open his eyes to truth and his heart to understanding.
Watch over him and keep him and his family safe from harm.
And in the fullness of time, grant that his two daughters might come to love and marry upstanding, conservative Republican men*. Amen.


*That last part is optional, but we did say we wanted the same for Obama as we did for Bush, regardless of skin color! Heh.

This invocation will be followed with a comprehensive list of BDS sufferers who have called for Bush to be blessed of God during his presidency:


1.
2.
3.
4.
5.


Cross Posted at Say Anything
Update: I just learned that the folks over at United Democrats have cross posted this as well.

As a former Democrat, I say "Welcome!" To paraphrase some churched friends of mine:
Obama needs the prayer and we need the practice!

A Little Saturday Night Music

I'm Baaaaaaaaaack!

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Well, maybe not completely, but the last two weeks have been moving hell! I'd been packing like a mad monk for about a week, when I lost my ISP to the move a week ago Thursday. Packed a 28' moving van with 26' of precious and irreplaceable Early Salvation Army decor and boxes....LOTS of boxes, over the weekend.
Woke up Sunday morning with flu-like symptoms (which have now been downgraded to mere bronchitis) and wasn't able to finish packing the truck until about noon Wednesday. An hour and a half to clean the garage of three years of detritus, and it was into the alternate Proofmobile for a fun filled, 42 hour, 2650 mile jaunt across America.

I had decided to take the southern route, because Highway 80 through the Rockies in December wasn't something I wanted to risk, so I picked the snow filled southern route (This was the week it snowed in Vegas!) and I believe I saw snow in nearly every state I crossed. I wasn't conscious in a couple of them, so don't hold me to that!

On the road, I got a friendly reminder on my cell phone, that I had not activated my new DSL account, so after my first all night sleep in three days, I attempted to do so, only to find that I had a problem with my phone line. That was resolved around 11:00 PDT today, then, I had problems getting onto the servers to register my new account. Thanks to a very helpful tech support person named Candace at ATT, I am now back in the proverbial saddle. No chairs yet at Casa de Proof, I'm sprawled across a counter top in my kitchen at the moment.

So, I apologize for the light posting, it's not because I didn't want to be here for you, it's just near death from illness, near death from sleep deprivation while driving (I exaggerate!) and wishing for death in dealing with automated tech support numbers have kept me from my appointed rounds!

On a smaller technical note, this officially marks my move to Pacific Time on the postings. Those of you who enjoyed seeing the features three hours earlier will just have to wait. I apologize. Before, when I was on the West Coast, there were at least two sites I would check every night at 9:01 for new content, knowing they were on East Coast time. I will endeavor to make it worth the wait!

Quote du jour

The greatest thing in family life is to take a hint when a hint is intended — and not to take a hint when a hint isn't intended.

-Robert Frost

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Night Babe

Tonight's FNB is Megan Fox

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Are those directions written on her side? 'Cause a guy could use something like that!

Quote du jour

"America is no stronger than its people - and that means you and me. Well, I believe in you, and I believe that if we work together then one day we will say, ``We fought the good fight. We finished the race We kept the faith.'' And to our children and our children's children we can say, ``We did all that could be done in the brief time that was given to us here on earth."

-Ronald Wilson Reagan

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Quote du jour

It behooves every man who values liberty of conscience for himself, to resist invasions of it in the case of others: or their case may, by change of circumstances, become his own.

-Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

The Medal of Honor

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Captain Everett Parker Pope


Citation:

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as commanding officer of Company C, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Peleliu Island, Palau group, on 19-20 September 1944. Subjected to pointblank cannon fire which caused heavy casualties and badly disorganized his company while assaulting a steep coral hill, Capt. Pope rallied his men and gallantly led them to the summit in the face of machinegun, mortar, and sniper fire. Forced by widespread hostile attack to deploy the remnants of his company thinly in order to hold the ground won, and with his machineguns out of order and insufficient water and ammunition, he remained on the exposed hill with 12 men and 1 wounded officer determined to hold through the night. Attacked continuously with grenades, machineguns, and rifles from 3 sides, he and his valiant men fiercely beat back or destroyed the enemy, resorting to hand-to-hand combat as the supply of ammunition dwindled, and still maintaining his lines with his 8 remaining riflemen when daylight brought more deadly fire and he was ordered to withdraw. His valiant leadership against devastating odds while protecting the units below from heavy Japanese attack reflects the highest credit upon Capt. Pope and the U.S. Naval Service .

Captain Pope: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes




http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/living/living_war_wwii.html

There are over a hundred living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice.

Quote du jour

"Live so that you wouldn't be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip."

-Will Rogers

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Quote du jour

The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent vice of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.

-Winston Churchill

Monday, December 15, 2008

Quote du jour

Ann Coulter to me is someone who says things that I say all the time, but I say them at three in the morning when I’m drunk as a monkey. She says them at three in the afternoon stone sober in bright daylight.

— P. J. O’Rourke

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Quote du jour

"As Robinson Crusoe said, 'I don't like this atoll."

via Thomas Sowell

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Little Saturday Night Music

A little music for a dreary winter's day: Herb Alpert and Lani Hall: Save the Sunlight

Quote du jour

There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power.

-Washington Irving

Friday, December 12, 2008

Friday Night Babe

Tonight's FNB is French actress Sophie Marceau

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Quote du jour

It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not to deserve them.

-Mark Twain

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Quote du jour

Democrats and the media can no longer rest on the old rationalization that Blago is an exception to the “we’re cleaner than thou” rule. 2008 was the year of Democratic Reps. William “Cold Cash” Jefferson, Charlie “Sweetheart Deals” Rangel, and former Detroit Mayor Kwame “Text Me” Kilpatrick. It was the year Democratic Massachusetts State Senator Dianne Wilkerson got caught stuffing bribes from an FBI informant down her shirt. It was the year 12 Democratic leaders and staffers in Pennsylvania’s state Capitol were stung in a massive corruption scandal involving cash, sex, and abuse of public office. And it was the year of multimillion-dollar embezzlement scandals at Democratic satellite offices of ACORN and the SEIU.

-Michelle Malkin

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Medal of Honor

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Master Sergeant Nicholas Oresko


Citation:

M/Sgt. Oresko was a platoon leader with Company C, in an attack against strong enemy positions. Deadly automatic fire from the flanks pinned down his unit. Realizing that a machinegun in a nearby bunker must be eliminated, he swiftly worked ahead alone, braving bullets which struck about him, until close enough to throw a grenade into the German position. He rushed the bunker and, with pointblank rifle fire, killed all the hostile occupants who survived the grenade blast. Another machinegun opened up on him, knocking him down and seriously wounding him in the hip. Refusing to withdraw from the battle, he placed himself at the head of his platoon to continue the assault. As withering machinegun and rifle fire swept the area, he struck out alone in advance of his men to a second bunker. With a grenade, he crippled the dug-in machinegun defending this position and then wiped out the troops manning it with his rifle, completing his second self-imposed, 1-man attack. Although weak from loss of blood, he refused to be evacuated until assured the mission was successfully accomplished. Through quick thinking, indomitable courage, and unswerving devotion to the attack in the face of bitter resistance and while wounded, M /Sgt. Oresko killed 12 Germans, prevented a delay in the assault, and made it possible for Company C to obtain its objective with minimum casualties.

M /Sgt. Oresko: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes




http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/living/living_war_wwii.html

There are over a hundred living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice.

Quote du jour

"I don't believe there's any cloud that hangs over me, I think there's nothing but sunshine hanging over me,"

-Gov. Rod Blagojevich, (D) Illinois, arrested yesterday for corruption

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Anti-Gun Governor Blagojevich Forced to Turn In Firearm Owner's ID

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Hypocrisy, they name is Democrat! (Nice hair, though!)


Long time anti-gun Governor Rod Blagojevich can add hypocrisy to his many shortcomings. Like Diane Feinstein, who campaigned for "handgun control" while possessing her own handgun and CCW permit, it seems that Governor Rod has at least one gun of his own. Count on the Democrats for "Do as I say, don't do as I do". John Lott points to an AP story that points out:

Blagojevich also was ordered to relinquish his passport and his firearm owner's identification card.


While I was doing a little research on RB's anti-gun past, it seems he's no stranger to a large carbon footprint, either! He could learn a little something from the Governor of Alaska:

Expensive daily commute

As Governor of Illinois, Blagojevich is entitled to live in the Illinois Executive Mansion, located in the state capital of Springfield. However, he and his family have opted to remain in Chicago. One reason he gave was an unwillingness to move his infant daughter away from home. In the governor's absence, the Illinois Times, a newspaper based in Springfield, held a satirical contest in 2003 for readers to decide how the mansion should be used. Suggestions ranged from using it as a hotel or homeless shelter to converting it to a "house of ill repute." The Blagojevich family has shunned the use of the Mansion even for one-night stays. Past Governors have lived in Springfield or have at least stayed there during legislative session.

During July and part of August 2007, Illinois lawmakers were in a deadlock over approving a state budget.[96] In light of this, Blagojevich came under criticism for choosing to take daily, expensive commutes between his Chicago home and his office in Springfield rather than stay in the Governor's Mansion in Springfield during the budget crisis. The round trip on a state plane costs nearly $6,000, and Blagojevich made the trip nine times between May 22 and June 7, costing Illinois taxpayers more than $75,000 according to state transportation records. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch noted that a commercial round-trip flight between Springfield and Chicago can be had on short notice for between $500 and $700. State senator Chris Lauzen noted that the cost was more than a teacher's annual salary


They sure can grow 'em in Illinois, can't they?

Cross Posted at Say Anything

Obama Isn't Bigger Than Life, He Just Has Two Stories!

Sweetness & Light points to a pair of videos where, in one, Obama claims not to have spoken to Gov. Rod Blagojevich of appointing his replacement and another where David Axelrod, Chief campaign advisor to Obama said he had.

Obama's statement is near the end of the video, but listen to the abysmal nonsense about climate change as a threat to national security. And he tells us the time for denial is past! Sheesh! Prepare for four years of propaganda in lieu of science.



And Captain Combover:

Quote du jour

Courage and perseverance have a magical talisman, before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish into air.

-John Quincy Adams

Monday, December 8, 2008

Quote du jour

My doctor told me to stop having intimate dinners for four. Unless there are three other people.

-Orson Welles

Sunday, December 7, 2008

"A Day That Will Live in Infamy"

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Sixty seven years ago today, the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor launched the United States into World War II. The above photo shows the memorial above the sunken battleship U.S.S. Arizona.

Take a moment today to remember the sacrifice of the "rough men who stand ready to do violence on your behalf."

Quote du jour

In a well-planned attack on iconic Bombay landmarks symbolizing great power and wealth, the “militants” nevertheless found time to divert 20 percent of their manpower to torturing and killing a handful of obscure Jews helping the city’s poor in a nondescript building. If they were just “teenage gunmen” or “militants” in the cause of Kashmir, engaged in a more or less conventional territorial dispute with India, why kill the only rabbi in Bombay?

-Mark Steyn

Saturday, December 6, 2008

"The Best Things in Life Are Dirty"

...from the movie Paint Your Wagon.



WARNING: This has Lee Marvin singing with Clint Eastwood. (This could be the longest three and a half minutes of your life!) Don't say I didn't warn you!

Cork Oak Groves May Disappear as Natural Cork Use Declines

The Law of Unintended Consequence strikes again!

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Wine connoisseurs have been known to debate the best stoppers for their favorite wines. A little over a decade ago, synthetic corks were developed to replace the natural, sometimes crumbly corks preserving the flavors favored by connoisseurs everywhere.

Synthetic corks and even screw tops have come increasingly into favor with even the snobbiest of the snobs.

One might think that a lessened demand for natural cork might help preserve the trees which are stripped of a 9 to 12 year growth of bark to manufacture stoppers for wine bottles. Save a cork, save a tree. Save a tree, save the world. (Or was that the Cheerleader? – I forget!)
The trees will then just return to their natural harmony with Mother Gaia, right?

Well, as any crop harvested for profit, declining markets could cause cork growers to abandon the business altogether…and sell the land for other purposes, which could cause the loss of both the trees and the surrounding habitat they sustained.

The World Wildlife Federation puts it like this:
But if the demand for cork is not maintained there’s a risk the cork oak landscapes of the western Mediterranean will, within a decade, face increased poverty, more forest fires, loss of biodiversity, and faster desertification.


And while the imperiled cork oak groves are more the result of the march of technology, in the quest for the perfect wine, perfectly preserved, there is an element of the unintended consequence here. After, all...no one intentionally plotted the demise of cork oak groves.

It would be mildly ironic, wouldn't it, if those environmentalists, stereotypically considered part of the wine and brie set, were to aid in unintentionally bringing about the deforestation of cork oak groves in their continuing pursuit of the perfect wine?

Maybe they could just put a cork in it!

Mini Movie (DVD?) Reviews

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One of the unintended consequences of my bouncing back and forth from coast to coast in the last two or three weeks, was the opportunity to watch not only more movies, but more bad movies than I have seen in the last two or three years.

And since I had to suffer as a captive audience at 36,000 feet, some of Hollywood’s most banal, most of which I actively avoided first run; it’s only fair that you should suffer with me! Here's a sampling:

Mama Mia: This movie was not released, it escaped! The plot, if you can call it that, is a girl on the verge of her marriage wants to be given away by her father. Only her mother slept with three different men around the time she was conceived and she’s never met him, so she invites all three to the wedding, unbeknownst to her eponymous mother.

The score consists of Abba songs loosely woven into the plot. The deft screenplay goes something like this: Insert Abba song here.

Unless you are a huge Abba fan, lover of musicals and mindless sitcoms (preferably all three) there’s a good chance you will not like this movie. When I saw it, there may have been rumblings to rush the cockpit and take whatever means necessary to make the movie stop. I recommend additional sky marshals if the movie is ever shown on an airplane again.

Journey to the Center of the Earth Brendan Frasier stars as an affable young man who finds love and dinosaurs in the center of the earth. Extreme suspension of disbelief is required to enjoy this movie, so small children and graduates of government schools should enjoy it.

Henry Poole is Here Luke Wilson as an affable young man who finds love and an image of Jesus in the waterstain of the stucco of the house in suburbia where he has come to seek the meaning of life. This is by far and away the best movie of the latest aileron crop of movies. Thought provoking and clever, particularly effective was the director’s use of the invisible wall, as you were treated to the wall’s eye view of the people who came to study the stain.
I remember seeing the trailer for this film, and wasn’t inspired to see it. Sans car crashes and chases, it must have been a challenge to capture its essence in a trailer. They failed.
It starts a little slow, but definitely worth a trip to Blockbusters for a quiet evening in.

Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 Since I somehow missed Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (1), there may have been some nuance of relationship that I missed. I must say, that this is one of my top ten favorite movies with the word “Sisterhood” in the title!
This is a pleasant little film, heavy on the estrogen. And guys, despite the fact that three of the four major characters are out of the aforementioned pants at any given time, there is no nudity in the film, other than some beefcake provided by a male art model.
Not bad as far as “chick flicks” go

Swing Vote Kevin Costner as an affable apolitical ne’er do well, Bud Johnson, whose single vote will decide the future of the free world. I personally avoided this movie more actively than the rest. However, it was the most surprisingly pleasant. Based on a highly improbable circumstance where the aborted (no pun intended) vote of one man will determine the outcome of the US Presidential election, Swing Vote has a charming cast of characters, starting with Bud’s 12 yr. old daughter Molly, played by Madeline Carroll.
The movie skewers politicians who will do anything to get elected and the news media who would do anything to garner ratings and get a story. Throw in a little morality play of an apathetic voter and you have a pleasant evening’s entertainment!

Well, that’s all for now. Rent the DVD’s at your pleasure or peril, but don’t say you weren’t warned! Heh.

A Little Saturday Night Music



Larry the Cable Guy's Christmas Carols

Quote du jour

A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them.

-P. J. O'Rourke

Friday, December 5, 2008

Friday Night Babe

Tonight's FNB, actress and fashion model Natasha Henstridge, is the whole nine yards!

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Firearms as "Medical Devices"

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Looks rather like an inhaler!
(Hope no one gets the two confused!)


Fox News- Constitution Arms, a small arms manufacturer based in Maplewood, N.J., is taking deposits for what it touts as the world's first ergonomically designed firearm.

Intended for use by the elderly and disabled, the single-shot 9-mm weapon looks like a giant bean grasped in the palm of the hand.

The barrel points out between the user's fingers. You "pull" the trigger by pressing on a thumbed button at the top.


An example of "thinking outside the box", here is a firearm that doesn't look like what we think of as a "gun", but was specifically designed for those who might have arthritis, or lack the strength to pull back the slide on a conventional pistol.

The article goes on to describe how a doctor might actually prescribe these weapons for elderly or infirm patients!

Even better, Constitution Arms says it's had it certified by the FDA as a "Class I Medical Device." That means doctors could prescribe the handgun to qualified patients, who would then have some or all of the cost reimbursed by Medicare or private insurance.


What is it the feminists have long claimed about abortion? "What good is a Constitutional right if you cannot afford it?" I have always believed that a consistency in this logic would have the government subsidizing firearms for the poor, so that they, too, could exercise their constitutional right to keep and bear arms. By the same token, what good is a Constitutional right to bear arms if you do not have the physical strength or ability to wield a conventional firearm?

What was the old Chinese curse? May you live in interesting times!

Here's breech open view for the more technically inclined:

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Cross posted at Say Anything

Schadenfreude du Jour

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Natalie Maines is in the news again!

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- Dixie Chicks singer Natalie Maines is the target of a defamation lawsuit by the stepfather of one of three 8-year-old boys slain in 1993.

Maines spoke out for three people convicted of the slayings and alleged the stepfather was instead involved in the killings.

Terry Hobbs, stepfather of Steve Branch, who was killed in 1993 with Christopher Byers and Michael Moore, filed suit in Pulaski County Circuit Court on Nov. 25. The suit names all three members of the Dixie Chicks, but focuses on Maines.



...Maines attended a Dec. 19 rally in Little Rock, where she claimed Jason Baldwin, Damien Echols and Jessie Misskelley — known to sympathizers as the "West Memphis Three" — were innocent and that supposed new evidence pointed to Hobbs. Her comments echoed a Nov. 26, 2007, letter that was still on the Dixie Chicks' Web site on Thursday, in which she claimed that new DNA testing of hair from the crime scene linked Hobbs to the killings and that his behavior after the slayings indicated his guilt.


So, dear Natalie watches three seasons of CSI and now she's a crime scene expert???

Didn't dear Natalie's turn getting hit by the Karmic bus teach her anything at all about shooting off her mouth? This referring, of course, the the meteoric nose dive taken by the Dixie Chicks after Ms. Maines criticized an American President on foreign soil during one of their concerts.

Dear Natalie: In the future, restrict your public speaking to things that you know personally to be true. Describe your belly button lint collection in excruciating detail, but leave political and social commentary to someone with at least a room temperature IQ. - Sincerely, A Former Fan



I like the sound of that: Schadenfreude du Jour...I may just keep that around!

Cross posted at Say Anything

Yellow Will Be Big in 2009

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AP -NEW YORKEnough gloom and doom: There’s a prediction from a leading color source that cheerful and sunny yellow will be the influential color of 2009. Pantone, which provides color standards to design industries, specifically cites “mimosa,” a vibrant shade of yellow illustrated by the flowers of some mimosa trees as well as the brunch-favorite cocktail, as its top shade of the new year. In general, Pantone expects the public to embrace many tones of optimistic yellow.


Heh. Someone must have informed the fashionistas of the foreign policy of the upcoming administration! In real estate, it's:
"Location, location, location!"

In politics, it's:
"Connotation, connotation, connotation!"


Hat tip Sweetness & Light

Quote du jour

"If you will not fight for the right when you can easily win without bloodshed; if you will not fight when your victory will be sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a small chance of survival. There may even be a worse case: you may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves."

-Winston Churchill

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Reflection on the Quote du Jour

You know, Obama has risen quite quickly from obscurity to the Oval Office...

Obama: From Obscurity to the Oval Office
... would make a great title for a book!

Quote du jour

Men think highly of those who rise rapidly in the world; whereas nothing rises quicker than dust, straw, and feathers.

-Lord Byron

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Medal of Honor

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Captain (then Lieutenant) Robert B. Nett


Citation:

He commanded Company E in an attack against a reinforced enemy battalion which had held up the American advance for 2 days from its entrenched positions around a 3-story concrete building. With another infantry company and armored vehicles, Company E advanced against heavy machinegun and other automatic weapons fire with Lt. Nett spearheading the assault against the strongpoint. During the fierce hand-to-hand encounter which ensued, he killed 7 deeply entrenched Japanese with his rifle and bayonet and, although seriously wounded, gallantly continued to lead his men forward, refusing to relinquish his command. Again he was severely wounded, but, still unwilling to retire, pressed ahead with his troops to assure the capture of the objective. Wounded once more in the final assault, he calmly made all arrangements for the resumption of the advance, turned over his command to another officer, and then walked unaided to the rear for medical treatment. By his remarkable courage in continuing forward through sheer determination despite successive wounds, Lt. Nett provided an inspiring example for his men and was instrumental in the capture of a vital strongpoint.

Captain Nett: We humbly salute you and thank you for your service.

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Hat tip Home of Heroes




http://www.homeofheroes.com/moh/living/living_war_wwii.html

There are over a hundred living MoH recipients today. Their names and their stories should not be forgotten. My mission is to honor one of those heroes here each week, and salute them for their courage and sacrifice.

Update: I recently learned through the Congressional Medal of Honor Society's webpage that Captain Nett had passed away October 19th of this year. RIP.
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