Friday, February 27, 2004

Thursday, February 26, 2004

The death of broadcast, no less

I don't know what got into Jeff Jarvis here. I guess the specter of govt censorship scares him so much that it must be invoked no matter how remote it is. Thus he goes from Clear Channel's recent attempts to enforce some tighter standards to "the death of broadcast".

If this is resulting from "govt intimidation", then why is only Clear Channel doing this? The answer is obvious - it's a competitive decision. Face it, the rudeness on radio will have to stop getting worse at some point if only because we're running out of taboos to break, and some people will pay to *avoid* this kind of crap. If they can know that tuning into Clear Channel stations will leave them comfortable, then the company has succeeded in building a brand.

Hey Jeff, why don't you work in some Howard Stern-like shtick into your blog? If it's that popular, you might be doing yourself a favor, right? Of course that's absurd - JJ runs a terrific blog, which is why I'm so startled by this post in the first place.

The bottom line is that if the govt forces it, it's censorship. If the private enterprise does it, it's standards, or what the rest of us might call "taste" or "class". Let time and the investors tell us if Clear Channel is doing the right thing.

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Rumsfeld targets 'future threats'

Neal Boortz pointed to this about future threats to US security in the years ahead.

And to think that some people seriously want John F. Kerry in the White House.

Mary Ann Glendon on "gay marriage"


Tuesday, February 24, 2004

Forget about Suze Orman

If you want to get rich, you should be reading John Weidner

Can such love be denied?

If Xrlq's dogs want to get married, who are we to stop them?

Come on guys, lay off the court stunts. If you think it's cool when Gavin Newsom interprets the plain text of the law so creatively, then think about how you'd like it if the Great Satan John Ashcroft did the same. Show some respect for democracy. "Gay marriage" is not a right, nor is that fact evidence of discrimination.

Kerry Campaign Theme Song Contest!

Laura Ingraham's talk radio show is running it. Nominations so far include: "Flipper" (theme song from television show Flipper); "Hair" (Hair Sndtrk); "Munsters" (theme from The Munsters television show); "Thank Heavens for Little Girls" (M. Chevalier, from Gigi), "Rich Girl" (Hall & Oates), "What's Your Name (Little Girl)?" (Lynryrd Skynyrd), "Cut Your Hair" (CNS&Y).


There's another even more outrageous e-mail con that's going on. Headlined 'Important notice,' it advises that your credit card is being charged $234.67 for child pornography. If, the note says, you didn't order it, enter your credit card and expiration date and they'll cancel the charge.

Afghans flocking to Beauticians Without Borders

Beauticians might have been smirking to themselves lately, thinking "nobody can outsource us". But that doesn't mean that the competition can't come to the US. And maybe one day we'll see a bunch of women from Afghanistan over here doing hair and makeup the way many Asians are over here doing nails.

Why women from Afghanistan? They're getting interested in beauty products now that they're not necessarily covered from head to toe all the time. There's not much they can do over there under traditional circumstances, and they're getting trained as noted here.

Stolen from Winds of Change.

Monday, February 23, 2004

Ralph @#^%#$$! Nader

Instapundit already pointed to it, but I'd love it if every site on the entire Web linked to this item from Radley Balko about Ralph Nader. It's not that damning actually, but it gives an idea about how this phony bankrolls his many enterprises that prey on the productive segments of our society to enrich himself and trial lawyers like John Edwards. Arguably Nader is the father of the modern tort system problems, and he's done as much as anyone to spread lies about nuclear power.

As much as it amuses me to see him tick off the Democrats by running for President, it would be even more enjoyable to see him exposed as the insufferable sanctimonious horse's ass that he is, or even found guilty of something that can get him locked up. I'm not the only one - check out Jane Galt and Mark A. R. Kleiman too. I doubt that there's another issue that RB, JG, MARK and I all agree on.

So come on Dems - put your slander machine in high gear and give this man what he's deserved for at least the last 20 years. - Paige calls NEA 'terrorist organization' - Feb. 23, 2004

Right here.

Alright, he goofed. But now we hear this:
In a written statement, NEA President Reg Weaver said, "It is morally repugnant to equate those who teach America's children with terrorists. NEA is 2.7 million teachers and educators who are fighting for children and public education. Yet this is the kind of rhetoric we have come to expect from this administration whenever one challenges its world view."
Oh really. Are the NEA 2.7 million teachers and educators who always oppose Republicans with or without provocation?

Maybe Weaver ought to go back to school himself, until he figures out that there's a difference between the NEA and those 2.7 million teachers. The fact is that the NEA has a set of interests distinct from that of teachers and often acts at odds with them, and that is what Paige was referring to. And has the NEA ever come up with a solution that didn't involve more dues-paying members having control of more money?

They oppose higher standards for teachers. They oppose uniform yardsticks for measuring student performance. They oppose competition for obviously failing public schools. They defend incompetent teachers to the point that it's almost impossible to get rid of them. They play partisan politics flagrantly all the time, then have the cojones to claim that they don't spend any money on politics on their tax filings.

With so much to complain about, who needs to call them terrorists too?

Union of Communist Scientists

They say that the "c" in UCS stands for Concerned, but their behavior gives them away. Born as antinukers, they've branched out into general left-wing advocacy.

You know, I'm a techie at heart - an engineer/IT guy with the requisite strong science and math backgrounds. I respect scientists and I wish we had more good ones. But that doesn't mean that I think they'd be worth a hoot as dictators, leaders or even politicians. And the UCS gives me about as good an example as I could ask for

Dodd found us a good link describing them here: Green Activists Fret About 'Politicized' Science

Indian IT outsourcing as seen by Indians

Here, as stolen from a comment on Arnold Kling's Econlog.

Ha! - they're worried about the Filipinos, who in turn are probably worried about the Chinese. Maybe outsourcing is best thought of as a hand-me-down for your economic little brothers.

College Republicans derecognized for refusing to accept Democrats?

Right here.

Sunday, February 22, 2004

When stupidity is contagious

An old Irish blessing goes something like this:
"May those that love us, love us.
And those that don't love us,
May God turn their hearts.
And if He doesn't turn their hearts,
May He turn their ankles
So we will know them by their limping."
Lately the world's Muslims haven't been so awfully friendly and it appears that some are choosing option #3 - Nigerians won't take a polio drug because they think it'll give them AIDS. Some think it'll make them sterile too.

Actually the AIDS concern is not as paranoid as it sounds. Despite the politically correct claim that "anyone can get AIDS", much of the problem in Africa is caused by reusing dirty needles, even by health professionals.

So, does poliomyelitis turn ankles? We should do so well. Thanks to a huge public health effort the public can now be ignorant of polio's effects - if you know an American citizen who has had it, odds are they are in their late 50s or older. So many might not appreciate its toll, which accounted for the common alternate name "infantile paralysis".

According to UNICEF:
By the end of 2002, the poliovirus was circulating in only seven coutnreis including Afghanistan, Egypt, India, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan and Somalia. In these countries, polio is isolated to limited areas. But as long as polio exists anywhere, it threatens children's lives. The remaining seven countries pose the greatest challenge.
This says polio at its peak killed or paralyzed half a million people every year.

The bottom line is that this stupidity by Nigerian authorities might ultimately become a health threat to you in the USA.

So you want to be a rock-and-roll star?

If I had to make a living as a musical performer I would have starved to death years ago.

Or would I? Now that I've seen William Hung I'm not so sure. Bounced brutally but justly from American Idol, he has developed a following of sorts.

As was noted on AI, the guy can't sing and can't dance. As a clean-cut conservatively dressed Chinese engineering student, he couldn't be less cool. So when he tries to sing and dance to Ricky Martin's "She Bangs", it's a sight to behold.

Andy Warhol was right.

Shut up, Max

I wasn't in GA when Max Cleland lost his Senate seat to Saxby Chambliss in 2000. All I knew of him was that he was a Vietnam veteran who had lost both feet and a hand in Vietnam. This didn't entitle him to a Senate seat, however - even if such injuries conferred special talents, we don't have enough Senate seats to go around.

Enter John F. Kerry. Kerry is trying to create a legend about Vietnam and now embraces the veterans he once described as killers or worse on a mass scale in language that's hard to exaggerate. This makes Max Cleland a convenient ally, and Cleland can use some publicity to revive his otherwise faltering political career. So now we're hearing from Cleland again, and he appears to be bound to convince us that he's just another Democratic Party hack.

That's his decision, but once he descends into the muck he shouldn't expect to escape smelling like a rose. Unfortunately Cleland, like Kerry has played the Vietnam card too much and too arrogantly. This means that as unpleasant as it is, it's time to set the record straight about Cleland. To do so we have a much-reviled and courageous commentator and provocateur, Ann Coulter.

Ms. Coulter has written of Cleland on successive weeks here and here. In the most recent one she cites several newspaper sources that note that Cleland was maimed not in combat, but in an accident with a hand grenade which, because it wasn't in combat, didn't qualify him for a Purple Heart. She also notes that this shows that *all* military service is inherently dangerous (and one needn't have a long memory to recall a period in Iraq in which it seemed that US forces were getting more casualties from routine operations than from enemy fire). The conclusion is that it's asinine to draw such a bright line between the active service of Kerry and Cleland and the National Guard service (learning to fly a plane renowned for being dangerous) like George W. Bush's. And if you insist on auditing every last document on Bush's service you shouldn't complain when someone points to the public record about Cleland.

But Cleland isn't through yet. Now there is this:
Kerry has campaigned on his Vietnam combat record, which includes three Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star.

Chambliss said Kerry, despite his service, has a weak record on military issues.

"He has a long history, particularly in the last decade, of not only voting to cut intelligence spending, but introducing bills to cut intelligence spending," Chambliss said.

Cleland, a Democrat, had some criticism for Chambliss.

"For Saxby Chambliss, who got out of going to Vietnam because of a trick knee, to attack John Kerry as weak on the defense of our nation is like a mackerel in the moonlight that both shines and stinks," he said.
Has Cleland been clever? Not particularly - it appears that he has forgotten Joe Biden's fall at the hands of Mike Dukakis. Cleland has recycled without attribution a line that is around two centuries old.

And he doesn't even use it right - the phrase is intended for those like Bill Clinton who combine spectacular talents with utter corruption. Does he mean to give Chambliss a backhanded compliment?

Why couldn't you just keep your mouth shut, Max?