We Win, They Lose
The Wit and Wisdom of Three Guys Named Brent, Mark and Mike
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
This Made Me Laugh...
Just came across this post, thought it was quite funny. It ends this way:

You know how your parents always ask you when you're going to start manufacturing humans when it's clear you don't have the investment capital and your production facilities aren't remotely close to being well staffed enough for such an endeavor? Well, they want to urge you to manufacture a human at any cost, and to do it quickly, because manufacturing a human was one of the best things they ever did, even though they are, admittedly, a little bit disappointed in how their human turned out. Yes, eventually, everyone's humans become scowly and old and bark into their cell phones and wear bad shoes, but it doesn't matter, because when their parents look at them, all they see is pajamas with feet.

Saturday, February 24, 2007
$2.48 for copy of Declaration worth $250,000.00
Wow. Check out this story, about the guy who bought a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence for $2.48, which he is now going to sell for much more than that:

Meet Michael Sparks, a Nashville music equipment technician for Soundcheck Nashville. The rolled-up document he happened upon last March, which he paid less than $3 for, is a rare copy of the Declaration of Independence. It might well fetch a quarter-million — or more.

Sparks found the document at the Music City Thrift Shop on Gallatin Road. He thought it was interesting and took it to the store office to ask for a price. The clerk took out a grease pencil and marked $2.48 on a piece of wood attached to the top of the document, and Sparks walked out the door with it.

Friday, February 23, 2007
Bad Guys Win
The University of Illinois has retired Chief Illiniwek. Lesson? When a small minority keeps harping and harping , and doesn't quit, and the majority laughs it off, the minority prevails.

After 20 years of pressure from activists who found the University of Illinois mascot offensive, the school did away with Illiniwek and his antics. Dan Maloney, a graduate student who portrays the controversial American Indian mascot, performed for the final time in front of students and fans at a men's basketball game Wednesday night.


The university hasn't said yet whether it will replace the chief with another mascot. Board of trustees Chairman Lawrence Eppley said last week that was a possibility, but said the impetus wouldn't come from the board.

Here's to hoping Illinois replaces the Chief with a white guy in a business suit and tie. It'd be fun to watch the same crowd that argued the Chief was racist because it demeaned Native Americans assert that this symbol was racist because it glorified only white males, and why weren't minorities represented by the mascot, blah, blah, blah....

You know it's true...

Let's see how much airplay this gets...
The former president of the Virginia ACLU was arrested today. Here's the article, which states:

Federal agents arrested Charles Rust-Tierney, the former president of the Virginia chapter of the ACLU, Friday in Arlington for allegedly possessing child pornography.


Rust Tierney coaches various youth sports teams in and around Arlington, Virginia, according to court documents.

In the past, Rust-Tierney had argued against restricting Internet access in public libraries in Virginia, writing, "Recognizing that individuals will continue to behave responsibly and appropriately while in the library, the default should be maximum, unrestricted access to the valuable resources of the Internet."

Amazing Grace
I don't often venture to a movie house to catch a movie, but I will try to see Amazing Grace. Click here for the New York Times take on it, you can tell the reviewer doesn't want to admit it's a good movie. But I'll try to see anything that the Times says "carries a strong whiff of piety."

Another upcoming movie which I really want to see is Bella. Not sure when it's coming out, but I hope it's soon.

Waddaya make of this?
Click here for an article which begins:

Students who are bullied by other students because of their sexual orientation are protected by New Jersey's antidiscrimination law, and school districts must take reasonable steps to stop such harassment, the state's Supreme Court unanimously ruled yesterday.

"Students in the classroom are entitled to no less protection from the unlawful discrimination and harassment than their adult counterparts in the workplace," according to the opinion, written by Chief Justice James R. Zazzali.

In the case in question, known as L. W. v. the Board of Education of the Toms River Regional Schools, an anonymous student said that he was taunted with antihomosexual epithets from the time he was in fourth grade until he was in high school and that he was physically attacked twice in high school. Because of the harassment, he contends, he eventually had to change schools.

Wow -- so now every schoolyard taunt can become grounds for a lawsuit? I suppose this is how diversity training and tolerance are going to be mandated -- this is going to mean teaching all young kids that homosexuality is ok, and that the kids cannot speak out against it because the school district will now be liable for creating a hostile environment. Think I'm wrong? Check out this quote:

Lawrence S. Lustberg, a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union, which participated in the case, called the ruling unique because it requires schools to take particular actions to prevent bullying.

“The application of the Law Against Discrimination to bullying in general and antigay or lesbian bullying in particular is yet another sign of the progressiveness of this excellent court,” he said.

The opinion can be found here.

Thursday, February 22, 2007
Two Great Posts
Powerline has two wonderful posts. The first is "Remembering the Indispensable Man," about George Washington. It begins:

Today is the anniversary of the birth of George Washington. Of all the great men of the revolutionary era to whom we owe our freedom, Washington's greatness was the rarest, the most necessary, and, at this remove in time, the hardest to understand.

The next solid post is titled "Gunning for Romney" and was posted yesterday. It makes an excellent point about something I've been pondering for a while -- namely, if Mitt Romney has "no chance," (which we keep on hearing), then why does the mainstream media seem so intent on discrediting him? It concludes with this:

But conservative Republicans should also think about what this race will look like if Romney falls by the wayside and no other strong, electable conservative enters. The choice will then be down to McCain and Giuliani. Nearly all of McCain's important stands have been anti-conservative. That he's getting any consideration from conservatives is due to the one big exception -- his passionate support for the war in Iraq and the war on terror generally. But even this exception has an exception, namely his efforts to limit our ability to interrogate terrorist detainees. Iraq is an important front in the war on terror, but so are the interrogation rooms where we try to extract information that will enable us to track down other terrorists and prevent future 9/11's. McCain has sided with the liberals on that front. McCain nonetheless may be the best choice, but as with Romney conservatives have "reason to wonder."

The other option would be Giuliani. His liberalism on social issues like abortion, gay marriage, and guns is well known. Conservatives will also want to look at his reign in New York. Frog-marching perps and making examples out of squeegee men may have been just what New York needed 15-20 years ago. But was Giuliani a big government mayor or a small government mayor, and does it matter? It would be nice to figure this out while there's still a viable candidate in the race who's taking uniformly conservative positions.

But that's precisely the opporutnity the MSM does not want conservative Republicans to have. So it holds its fire on Giuliani and McCain, and trains nearly all of its guns on Mitt.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Wow, that's early...
"Romney to Air Presidential Campaign Ad" is the title of this piece. I was talking to a friend of mine in SC this past weekend, and he brought up Mitt Romney. Out of the "big three," I really don't think Romney has insurmountable handicaps as compared with the other two. The big weakness trumpeted these days is his supposed pro-life conversion, but Guiliani is pro-choice, and McCain has his own abortion problems. (By the way, didn't he once say that he wouldn't want the government to take away the option of abortion for his own daughter? How does he square that with his recent statement that he would like to see Roe v. Wade repealed?) We'll see how it shakes out, but I don't see anything to lead me to believe that Romney will get crushed by either McCain or Rudy.

Thursday, February 15, 2007
Smitten with Mitt TV
is the title to this piece in The Politico. The money quote? Easy:

Mitt Romney is Bill Clinton with his pants up. And he’ll very likely be cast in 2008 (“nominated,” if you prefer the political science verb) against Clinton’s wife, who has all the seductive qualities of John Kerry in a pants suit.

Money. I just noticed that's the last 5 letters of Mitt's last name. Maybe he should go with Mitt R. Money.

Happy Birthday
is the name of the music video linked by Jill Stanek at this post. It is a pretty sad song about abortion regrets from a father's perspective.

Can Romney rise to top of GOP presidential pack?
is the question posed by this article in the Christian Science Monitor. In my estimation, rising to the "top" of the current GOP presidential pack is not saying much. Thus, my answer would to the question posed would be an obvious yes, for whatever that is worth.

Sunday, February 11, 2007
Lincoln's Second Inaugural
has always been one of my favorite speeches. That's why this post looks very interesting to me. (Hat tip to Hugh Hewitt)

By the way, tomorrow is the birthday of our greatest president.

Saturday, February 10, 2007
A Movie: Nobody Knows
My wife and I watched Nobody Knows last night. I agree with this review:

Whatever its roughness and excess, "Nobody Knows" is intense and powerful film-making. Koreeda has put his whole heart and soul into this movie and with it achieves an experience you can't shrug off.

This Was A Good One...
Sometimes I crack myself up. I was just checking out some old stuff I had posted on here, and came across this post, which ends with this:

Well, boys, there's your solution -- if you don't want the chimp to smoke, don't give her any cigarettes. Sounds easy enough. What's she going to do, drive her car down to the corner grocery and get them herself? Geez....

Thursday, February 08, 2007
Um.... Yeah.
Click here for a story that is titled "UW: Admissions plan legal despite state laws barring use of race." It begins:

University of Wisconsin System leaders said Thursday their plan for a freshman admissions policy that considers applicants' skin color is legal despite state laws that say race cannot be a test for admission.

A 2003 U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing universities to consider race as one of many factors in admissions trumps those laws, said David Walsh, a Madison lawyer and president of the UW System Board of Regents.

''We think that clearly those two statutes do not preclude us from moving forward,'' Walsh said. But, he added, ''We may be wrong in the long run.''

Come on guys, do you really consider their skin color? So if someone dyed themselves pink the day they filled out their UW application, would that be a plus or a minus?

Oh wait -- I forgot about UW's cut and paste diversity campaign from a few years ago -- maybe this is just an extension of that. After all, these are the same clowns that doctored their application brochure to insert an African-American.

Guess they don't want to fake their version of diversity anymore, they want the "real thing." ("The next photo we take at a football game will have a real black guy in it, that's it and that's all!!!") After they got caught, Al Friedman, the UW director of university publications, said "Our intentions were good, but our methods were bad." The same thing is true here, guys.

You see, there's this thing called the Fourteenth Amendment, perhaps you've heard of it? It says:

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Aw, never mind.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Utah abortion-restriction bill called a losing judicial bet
is the title of this piece from the Deseret News. It discusses a legislative attempt to restrict abortion. The interesting thing about the article, however, is the way it approaches the issue from a purely political standpoint -- note how many times supreme court justices are referred to simply as "votes," especially by those against the bill. One example:

Kennedy and four other justices are on record supporting constitutional protection of a woman's right to choose abortion before a fetus is viable outside the womb, said Columbia University law professor Gillian Metzger.

"I personally haven't seen any indication suggesting those votes are likely to change," Metzger said. "But, we may have indications on that from the court's decision on the federal partial (birth) abortion act later this term. ... But we might not, because even if that measure is upheld as constitutional it doesn't indicate that there aren't still five votes for a constitutional right to choose in some form."

Is that how a right becomes constitutional these days? Five votes? No need to examine the actual text of the instrument, it's all votes. This article nicely (if unintentionally) sums up how far out of whack our judicial branch has gotten. One question which apparently no one was asked is: If there is going to be a vote on abortion, why don't we all get to vote? Why just the nine jokers wearing robes? Why not the legislature (whose job it is to, you know, vote).

Another example, a quote from Margaret Plane, legal counsel for ACLU of Utah:

"I don't even need to count votes. The way the rule of law works, the way Supreme Court precedent works, they don't just up and overturn a 34-year precedent. It may be chipped away at, it may change, it may grow. But there's something called the rule of law that's not just upended because of a new justice or two."

Yeah "they" don't just up and overturn 34-year old precedent. Instead, "they" invent new rights not mentioned in the text, rights which no one who wrote the instrument intended. The Fourteenth Amendment was around for 105 years, and the Constitution itself for almost 184 before the supremes pretended that it contained a right to an abortion. The sad part is, Ms. Plane is right -- these days, the Constitution is nothing more than five votes.

: Just found this little tidbit -- guess who is the Chair of the Utah State Bar's Constitutional Law Section? That's right -- Margaret Plane.

Happy Birthday, Mr. President
Ronald Reagan was born in Tampico, Illinois on this day in 1911. It sure would be nice to have even one true conservative on the national political scene. The next person perceived by the American public as a true conservative will be close to unstoppable. Here is a portion of a Reagan snippet from the History Channel:

As a result of his actor’s training, Reagan possessed an uncanny ability to simultaneously project toughness, humility and affability.

Yeah, it was just because he was trained to trick all of us. He wasn't really any of those things (tough, humble, or affable), it was all ACTING (AS Jon Lovitz would say). He managed to project those things without really being them.

I guess we should be satisfied for this half-acknowledgement:

Perhaps most notably, his increase in military spending and bold anti-communist rhetoric contributed to the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Reagan always reminded me of my dad -- a great man, with strong values and a great sense of humor.

Monday, February 05, 2007
Hit Piece
Check out this hit piece masquerading as journalism. Geez, who is this guy's editor?

Portugal abortion vote to test modernity
By Axel Bugge | February 4, 2007

LISBON (Reuters) - This month, Catholic Portugal may decide to break ranks with a small group of countries including Ireland and Poland and legalize abortions, in a referendum which some cast as a deeper test of its readiness for progress.

On the face of it, the February 11 vote could resolve the estimated 23,000 abortions that take place in secret each year -- which Socialist Prime Minister Jose Socrates has called "Portugal's most shameful wound."

So, now legalizing abortion is a test for "modernity"? Obviously, there's only a "small group" of countries which oppose it, and it's time for Portugal to "break ranks," as if Portugal is following the lead of Ireland here. Click here to see a few of the topics about which Axel Bugge has written -- deforestation, AIDS, and here for another recent hit piece on Portugal and the Catholic Church.

The article goes on, descending into arguing that economic progress also correlates with abortion and a modern attitude, referring to Spain as an "example," and using the following quote: "Spain is what Portugal could have been if it had developed."

It closes by suggesting attitudes favoring gay marriage are indicators of economic prosperity, before taking more shots at the Catholic Church:

Spain has allowed abortions since 1987 and its first gay marriages took place in July 2005. In Portugal, only 29 percent agree gay marriage should be allowed, against an average of 44 percent in the European Union, Eurobarometer showed.

Other Portuguese say the country's lagging development is because of the years it spent under dictator Antonio Salazar. Salazar's 1933-74 regime controlled Portugal's economic, social and cultural life, helped by a repressive secret police force.

The Catholic Church was closely aligned with Salazar.

"Don't forget that Portugal was very closed for many, many years, with complete political control," said Ines Carvalho, a 35-year-old divorcee who intends to vote in favor of lifting the ban.

There's a good expert -- a 35-year-old divorcee. And don't worry, honey, Reuters won't let us "forget" how "very closed" Portugal was. Look at that quote -- what the heck does it even mean? "Portugal was very closed with complete political control"? Portugal had control? Over what -- itself? Shouldn't it? What a stupid quote. And a one-sentence paragraph to emphasize the role of the Catholic Church in Portugal's alleged backwardness? The slant of this article is simply ridiculous.

Sunday, February 04, 2007
Gay Couples To Get 'Certificates Of Inequality'
The Sacramento Bee has reported that Yolo County Clerk-Recorder Freddie Oakley has designed 'Certificates Of Inequality' to distribute to lesbians and gays on Valentine's Day, in protest of the State of California's ban on same-sex marriage. You just can't make this stuff up.

The woman who oversees civil marriage in Yolo County, Calif., is planning to issue "certificate of inequality" to same-sex couples on Valentine's Day.

It's her way of protesting California's ban on gay marriage. They will say, "I issue this Certificate of Inequality to you because your choice of marriage partner displeases some people whose displeasure is, apparently, more important than principles of equality."

In the mind of the average liberal, "equality" (of outcome, not opportunity) is the most sacrosanct principle there is. It's the beginning and end of this woman's argument. But I wonder if she will give the certificates to anyone, or if they have to be a same-sex couple? Why only couples? Why not trios? Or quads? Solos? Why only gays and lesbians? What of the many straights who undoubtedly want a Freddie Oakley certificate -- surely she won't treat them any different than she does anyone else. Right? If she won't give them to everyone, doesn't that make her little stunt "more important than principles of equality"? Good Heavens!! We mustn't have that!! How can she justify limiting her certificates to only a small group, and not everyone? Wouldn't that make some people -- gasp! -- unequal???

And by the way, how does this public servant get away with issuing anything from a public office that is not an official sanctioned government document? The Sacramento Bee has this quote:

Oakley, a married mother of two, said no tax dollars were spent on the certificate and that it reflects her own personal view -- not that of Yolo County supervisors.

An elected official, Oakley said she printed about 50 of the certificates and has a constitutional right to distribute them.

"I don't give up my right to exercise the First Amendment by assuming county office," she said.

She should not be using government time, resources or space as a platform for her own opinion. In my mind, she should be fired. (In a recent supreme court opinion Justice Kennedy wrote "Proper application of our precedents leads to the conclusion that the First Amendment does not prohibit managerial discipline based on an employee's expressions made pursuant to official responsibilities.") Perhaps some taxpayer will sue Oakley for violating their right to equal treatment under the laws, you never know. The article continues:

Some critics told the Bee that it was wrong of Oakley, an elected official, to distribute her certificates from a public building.

"The people pay government officials to implement the law and to faithfully execute the law," said Randy Thomasson, president of Campaign for Children and Families, which lobbies on social issues. "Not to ridicule the law and perform stunts that advocate the overthrow of marriage." But Oakley told the paper that turning same-sex couples away without marriage licenses makes her feel "like a good German, in the Third Reich, who enforced bad laws."

Patty Hearst
was kidnapped today in 1974. She was later seen on video robbing a bank with the SLA, and was convicted and sentenced to serve seven years. I don't know much about her, but found it interesting that President Carter commuted her sentence after 21 months, and President Clinton pardoned her right before he slid out of office.

Go Bears!
beat the Colts! As an aside, this is the first time I have been interested to watch a Super Bowl since the John Elway-led Broncos won a couple in the late 90's. Also, I have to say that from the few games I have been able to catch this season, Rex Grossman is one of the worst quarterbacks I have ever seen. This game will likely be determined by how good Peyton Manning can play versus how bad Rex Grossman can play. The Bears defense has played awesome at times, and if they can hit today, it should be a good one. Lots of people seem excited about this game, I'll bet it has some of the highest ratings for a Super Bowl.

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