Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Secret Service agents say Cheney was drunk when he shot lawyer


Well, this may explain the delay in reporting incident. I did not realize that Cheney had a history of alcohol abuse. He has had two driving under the influence convictions.

Edit: Take this with a grain of salt. Doug mentioned that the source of this story is not very credible. I've done a bit of research this morning and have found that Capitol Hill Blues has little or no respect. Live and learn.

Conseco Fieldhouse Best in the NBA

122 Teams. 106 Venues. 49 Cities. 4 Sports.

The guys at The Ultimate Sports Road Trip have visited and rated the best stadiums in all four major North American sports. They recently declared Conseco Fieldhouse to be the best venue in the NBA. Charlotte's new arena was second, and not suprisingly, last place went to the home of the New Jersey Nets--Continental Airlines Arena at the Meadowlands.

Tuesday roundup

Lucas Oil, eh? I have never heard of them, but I guess this why they are willing to pay millions for the naming rights of the new Indiana stadium.

Civil rights icon tapped to defend Wal-Mart . I wonder what Martin Luther King would think of Andrew Young's decision to shill for Wal-Mart. It is sad to think that a man who once worked so hard to free others from discrimination and fought for working people can now be bought for the highest bidder. Andrew Young has accomplished a lot of great things in life by working hard for those who have suffered injustice. I do not understand why he'd want to tarnish his legacy. Apparently, we all have our price.

Bush's approval rating is at 34% and Cheney's is at 18%.

This is an interesting article about the evolution of blonds. This study also suggests that natural blonds will die out within the next one hundred years because too few people carry the gene.

cites a report that Generation X is working more and making less money.

Monday, February 27, 2006

A new anti-labor group

I have been reading Slate columnist Daniel Gross' blog lately. Recently, he wrote about a new anti-union website called Union Facts. This new website basically tries to blame unions for all that is wrong in the United States. This is incredible considering the union share of the workforce has declined from 36% to 12.5% over the past 50 years. Here is an article about the launch of the site and the corporate power behind the movement. The article claims unions helped bankrupt the steel, auto and airline industries. As Daniel Gross notes, "Gee, I didn't know union officials wrote the business plan for United Airlines and held a gun to the head of GM's management and forced them to make bad investments in Fiat."

The group has purchased full page advertisements in major newspapers and have been issuing press releases. Here is a sample one: First They Came for Wal-Mart. The title is an allusion to the Niemoller quote. Yes, this group had the audacity to compare a Maryland healthcare bill to the holocaust.

This group's leader, Richard Berman, has in the past worked as an advocate for the corporate profits of the restaurant industry over the health and welfare of consumers. They ask for donations on the website because "We don't have the luxury of forced dues to pay for our ads, web site, and research." No, you have a multi-million dollar a year budget that is largely financed by the right wing and corporate America. Federal law requires unions to publicize their financial records on the other hand, Berman refuses to identify who is backing him.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Harper's Magazine: Impeach Him

blog buzz

The Washington Post has an article about a former copywriter who is now a New York City cabdriver. Of course she blogs about her experiences and it is quite interesting. She receives about 140,000 page hits a day, which is about 440 times more traffic than this blog averages.

Also in today's Post, there is an article which reports that there are over 30 million blogs. I know that sounds like a lot, but the world's population reached 6.5 billion people yesterday. Also, Daniel Gross of slate.com wonders if the blog bubble has burst. A recent Gallup poll titled "Blog Readership Bogged Down" showed that only 9 percent of those polled said they regularly read blogs, while 66 percent said they never read them. The same poll reported zero growth in blog readership.

It is interesting because in the last year many media outlets have started to incorporate blogs into their website. It seems that every columnist is required or encouraged to start blogging. The Washington Post links blogs which quote its articles. Slate.com does an almost daily blog update. The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette was the first Indiana paper that I noticed to pay attention to local blogs. The local alternative paper Nuvo has recently encouraged its writers to blog as well even though Steve Hammer has had a blog for some time. The Star has had its community panelists for sometime, but only recently has it featured bloggers David Lindquist-music critic; David Hutchens-IU basketball coverage; Dan McFeely - bariatric surgery; and Raygan Swan -- I have no idea. I imagine this is happening in newspapers all across the country as there are only a handful of newspaper companies anyway. In spite of all of these "old media" attempts to incorporate blogs into their newspapers, it is surprising that blog readership is still stagnant.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Enjoy this amusing cartoon from hypnocrites

Friday, February 24, 2006


The local blog Indyscribe describes Indianapolis as "Flat, cheap and out of control." Apparently, they are right as the we are nation's most affordable housing market.

Sometimes you have to go overseas to find out what's going on in the USA. The Guardian has a story about a VietNam era soldier from Indiana who deserted from the Marines and was recently captured.

Also, William Greider writes about how Bush was hoist upon his own petard over the Dubai port deal. "Hysteria has been used to realign US foreign policy for permanent imperial war-making, whenever and wherever we find something frightening afoot in the world."

I saw this on Reverent and Free who saw it on Kos--In a nutshell, Fox news are a bunch of bastards.

The First Gulf War

Lemming notes: On this day in 1991, President George H.W. Bush informed Iraq that they must pull out of Kuwait within twenty-four hours, or the United States would invade.

In the 15 years that have passed since Gulf War I, there have been over 11,620 deaths of soldiers who served in that war, which is a higher death rate than soldiers who served in VietNam. In these fifteen years, nearly 200,000 soldiers who served have complained about effects similar to Gulf War syndrome. Gulf War Syndrome veterans have battled the government for recognition with mixed results. According to the Seattle Post-Intelligence brain cancer deaths, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease) and fibromyalgia now are recognized by the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments as potentially connected to service during the Persian Gulf War.

On the other hand, the government has not fully recognized many of these claims. The main theories for the cause of GWS are: Depleted Uranium in artillery shells(still used by the USA), accelerated anthrax vaccines given to the troops, and that 125,000 and 9,000 troops were exposed to chemical weapons after the US bombed an Iraqi weapons depot.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Senate panel overhauls abortion legislation

I was surprised to see that Senator Miller was the one who was responsible for gutting the bill. I have called her "wingnut" several times in this blog, but it just goes to show that she is a bit more reasonable than her counterparts in the House.

Effort to limit procedure is severely weakened

The most significant provision now is a new requirement that doctors tell women seeking an abortion that there are families waiting and willing to adopt. Already, doctors must inform women about alternatives to abortion, including adoption, the risks of the procedure and that an ultrasound of their fetus is available.
Wednesday's action, a boost to abortion-rights supporters, was instigated by a staunch opponent of abortion.

Senate Health and Provider Services Committee Chairwoman Patricia L. Miller, R-Indianapolis, said she didn't think the bills appropriately addressed the larger issue of reducing the number of abortions in Indiana


Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The understatement of the year

Of course this is a political ploy. Sodrel is a first term incumbent who narrowly defeated Baron Hill. Hill is running again and figures to give him quite a match. NPR picked up on this story today as well. I imagine the audio will be available tomorrow.

As an aside, I knew a guy who worked for Sodrel's trucking firm a few years ago. The guy told me he had filed for a divorce and had started to date another woman. Sodrel fired him because he was still married and his eyes he was an adulterer, so that just shows you what kind of schmuck Sodrel is.

ACLU: Sodrel prayer bill is a political ploy

A proposal that would bar federal judges from ruling on the content of prayer in state legislatures is a political ploy and an attempt to end-run the constitution, the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana said today.

U.S. Rep. Mike Sodrel, a Republican, has introduced legislation he said would prevent federal courts from ruling on the content of speech in legislatures.
The proposal is a response to a November ruling by U.S. District Judge David Hamilton, who said the official Indiana House proceedings could not begin with prayers that mention Jesus Christ or endorse any particular religion.


Poverty in the US is the worst in the Developed World

37 million poor hidden in the land of plenty

America often touts itself as the richest country in the world. I suppose it is true in terms of pure numbers. On the other hand, we also have the highest percentage of our population living in poverty and the statistics have only worsened under the Bush administration and Republican Congress. It is only going to get worse as Bush proposed 141 cuts in social spending programs in his current budget. There has been no large public outcry over this shift of funds away from people and largely into the hands of military contractors and into tax breaks for the wealthy.

A shocking 37 million Americans live in poverty. That is 12.7 per cent of the population - the highest percentage in the developed world. They are found from the hills of Kentucky to Detroit's streets, from the Deep South of Louisiana to the heartland of Oklahoma. Each year since 2001 their number has grown.

Under President George W Bush an extra 5.4 million have slipped below the poverty line. Yet they are not a story of the unemployed or the destitute. Most have jobs. Many have two. Amos Lumpkins has work and his children go to school. But the economy, stripped of worker benefits like healthcare, is having trouble providing good wages.

Even families with two working parents are often one slice of bad luck - a medical bill or factory closure - away from disaster. The minimum wage of $5.15 (£2.95) an hour has not risen since 1997 and, adjusted for inflation, is at its lowest since 1956...

The Guardian

The Porn Police

Since when is pornography a matter of homeland security?

Policing Porn Is Not Part of Job Description

Montgomery Homeland Security Officers Reassigned After Library Incident

Two uniformed men strolled into the main room of the Little Falls library in Bethesda one day last week and demanded the attention of all patrons using the computers. Then they made their announcement: The viewing of Internet pornography was forbidden.

The men looked stern and wore baseball caps emblazoned with the words "Homeland Security." The bizarre scene unfolded Feb. 9, leaving some residents confused and forcing county officials to explain how employees assigned to protect county buildings against terrorists came to see it as their job to police the viewing of pornography.

After the two men made their announcement, one of them challenged an Internet user's choice of viewing material and asked him to step outside, according to a witness. A librarian intervened, and the two men went into the library's work area to discuss the matter. A police officer arrived. In the end, no one had to step outside except the uniformed men.

They were officers of the security division of Montgomery County's Homeland Security Department, an unarmed force that patrols about 300 county buildings -- but is not responsible for enforcing obscenity laws.

Washington Post

Side note: What is it with these East coast police departments? Spotsylvania County Sheriff Howard Smith said he stands by the practice of allowing detectives to receive sexual services in the course of their investigations so they can catch suspects in the act.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

The Alford Watch

It's already started. The Indy Star has a comment from Steve Alford: Alford's current concern: Iowa

Yeah, I believe that as much I believed Roy Williams when he started yelling at the female CBS Reporter for asking him about the UNC job right after his Jayhawks had lost the national championship. Of course Alford wants this job, IU is a top tier program and he would be able to recruit players far better than he did in Iowa. I don't believe he is a good enough coach to lead the Indiana University Hoosiers. Yes, he deserves an interview and he'll most likely get one, but let's try to get the best coach available. Mark Few, please send your resume. Bob Huggins, don't even bother. Do you hear me? Don't even bother. John Calipari, you win, but I don't like you. I wish John Chaney had beaten you up years ago.

Update: Now ESPN has a Steve Alford watch.

Separation is best for Davis and IU program

Davis has himself to blame

Ann Coulter: Felon? Perhaps...Horseface? For sure!

I read this on DailyKos.

Ann Coulter may have committed voter fraud in Florida. (Original Palm Beach Post link has expired).

On edit: 8/26/06 Welcome, Michelle Malkin readers

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Mike Davis Resigns

24-Hour News 8 has learned that Indiana University basketball coach Mike Davis has resigned. Davis was back on the sidelines in Pennsylvania as the Hoosiers took on Penn State Wednesday night. It was after the game that Davis confirmed that his time as the Hoosiers' coach is over. When Davis sat down for a press conference following the game he said he had no comment on his job at IU. Davis will stay on to coach the Hoosiers for the remainder of the season.


News Briefs

Are blogs Talk Radio for the Left?

I'll add some commentary on this later. I am just putting it up for discussion now.

Can Blogs Revolutionize Progressive Politics?

We have no interest in being anti-establishment,” says Matt Stoller, a blogger at the popular Web site MyDD.com. “We’re going to be the establishment.”

That kind of flamboyant confidence has become the hallmark of blog evangelists who believe that blogs promise nothing less than a populist revolution in American politics. In 2006, at least some of that rhetoric is becoming reality. Blogs may not have replaced the Democratic Party establishment, but they are certainly becoming an integral part of it. In the wake of John Kerry’s defeat in the 2004 presidential elections, many within the Democratic leadership have embraced blog advocates’ plan for political success, which can be summed up in one word: netroots.

This all-encompassing term loosely describes an online grassroots constituency that can be targeted through Internet technologies, including e-mail, message boards, RSS feeds and, of course, blogs, which serve as organizing hubs. In turn, these blogs employ a range of features —discussion boards, Internet donations, live e-chat, social networking tools like MeetUp, online voting—that allow ordinary citizens to participate in politics, be it supporting a candidate or organizing around a policy issue. Compared to traditional media, blogs are faster, cheaper, and most importantly, interactive, enabling a level of voter involvement impossible with television or newspapers.

In these times

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

From the Theocracy Files...

Now, I expect this type of garbage from Republicans, but Democrats too? I know one has to remain electable, but could one courageous Democrat vote "no" and then be able to make an articulate argument to support that vote.

Patrick Bauer, you're a hack and I hope to god (in an ecumenical sense) that the party delegation replaces you.

The House's only Jewish member David Orentlicher stayed away in protest. I understand his reason for doing so, but I wonder if he would have been more effective if he had shown up and voted "no".

House takes stand for unrestricted prayer, 83-0

Resolution, which lacks force of law, sends a message to judge who banned invoking of 'Jesus'

The Indiana House sent a message Monday to the federal court judge who banned the word "Jesus" from official prayer by voting 83-0 to oppose the decision.

"It's time to bring our prayer from the back of the room to the front of the room," said House Minority Leader B. Patrick Bauer, D-South Bend


Monday, February 13, 2006

Additional commentary not required

Cheney accidentally shoots hunting companion

Update: Cheney's shooting victim has suffered a mild heart attack after some birdshot moved and lodged near his heart.

Chewbacca has evidence of more Cheney gun malfeasance.

Oh and you thought you were having a bad day?

Sunday, February 12, 2006

I went to visit my family in southwestern Indiana this weekend. I saw a few interesting things:

- In Terre Haute, I saw a car with a domino's pizza delivery sign on it. The car was a fairly new Mercedes. Strange.

_ In a Ponderosa (yes, I said Ponderosa, there aren't a lot of options down there) I saw two people with oxygen tanks sitting in the middle of the smoking section.

- On a more serious note, a girl I dated briefly a long time ago has been charged with murder.

Thursday, February 9, 2006

Mitch Daniels

Privatization is a dirty word. It does not work and is often a way to line the pockets of business cronies. There I said it. Stephen Goldsmith did it for years and was a national figure for his privatization efforts until voters realized his policies failed. Now, I am not accusing our current governor of having any friends in Spain or Australia, but I do remember his campaign promises:

"My first day as governor, I'll stop hiring people elsewhere to do work Hoosiers can do just as well," Daniels says. "We need to keep more of our tax dollars here in Indiana, circulating in our economy. It's not sentimental -- it's just good business."


Of course we all know about the toll road to the Australian-Spanish company. It's even made national news. Honestly, I doubt there is an Indiana or even American counterpart to that company, but let's look at the other privatization efforts. The list reveals out of state companies and campaign donors.

FSSA Likely To Be Privatized Through Out-Of-State Company: Daniels said that even though the top contract contenders are from out-of-state, he believes the deal will save taxpayers' money.

Oh, and then there was the privatized prison where Daniels chose a Florida firm to run it.

Privatizing the New Castle Correctional Facility is off to an ignominious start. Indiana selected a company that overcharged Florida several million dollars in running two prisons. The fact the contractor made contributions to Gov. Mitch Daniels and the Indiana GOP, and not to Democrats, only makes this deal look worse than it should.

In May, state officials hired Pennsylvania-based Liberty Healthcare Corp. to manage the (Fort Wayne Development Centercenter –- a $3 million contract over 18 months.

So there it is, your Indiana government is for sale to the highest out of state bidder and/or campaign contributor. It is not quite what Governor Daniels promised when he made the campaign promise to "Buy Indiana", but perhaps he'll lose his next election just like Indiana's last great privatizer did.

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

IU is going to give me a stroke.

I am tired of losing. Fire Mike Davis.

Update: A 'nation' united against its coach

Tuesday, February 7, 2006

Bob and Tom

I don't listen to Bob and Tom very often or else I would have mentioned this before tonight. The local radio stars played themselves on the ABC show Rodney. It has already aired. I guess you can Tivo it if you're curious. All I can say is that we're not in danger of losing them to Hollywood.

Yesterday's News

The Bloody 8th

Check out Masson's Blog to find out how an overzealous blogger has find himself in the middle of controversy in the Congressional race between John Hostettler and Brad Ellsworth.

Update: St. Allio has complete coverage.

Atrios has declared blogger Josh Claybourn the "wanker of the day". I kind of feel sorry for him. He is young and he made a mistake. I am sure my own youthful zeal could have caused me to do the same a few years ago.

Another update: I feel like a high school gossip, but apparently St. Allio's way has been banned from one of Claybourn's websites In the Agora. I guess he or his cohosts did not like the way he exposed their revisionism.

Yet another update: Brian at Confessions of an Exhausted Mind noted that St Allio is no longer banned at In the Agora.

Monday, February 6, 2006

Tales of Corporate Oppression

I heard this on NPR this morning. Author Max Barry's latest novel is called Company, which details the cruel and weird world of corporate culture.

In support of his novel, he has started a website calledTales of Corporate Expression: Exposing cruel and unusual workplaces since 2005. It's a pretty interesting site where readers can share their awful work experiences. It makes for some interesting reading.

Saturday, February 4, 2006

Writing Makes Your Soul Grow

Friday, February 3, 2006


Chewbacca deserves another mention. His critics have called him inarticulate, a walking carpet, but blogger.com calls him "blog of note" on its front page.

Also, the "hooters of hair" is set to open in Indianapolis.

On a more serious note, check out this article entitled "The End of the Internet"

The nation's largest telephone and cable companies are crafting an alarming set of strategies that would transform the free, open and nondiscriminatory Internet of today to a privately run and branded service that would charge a fee for virtually everything we do online.

Indiana's toll road controversy has been picked up the national media.

I don't know if the Colts realize how much we need Edgerrin James. I think part of the reason why we lost in the AFC championship game was that we did not give James enough carries. The salary cap makes keeping him next to impossible and especially with so many other free agents to deal with, but we will not go to a Super Bowl with Dominic Rhodes.

Thursday, February 2, 2006

General Assembly Report

When does life begin? -- Boooooooooring.

Eminent Domain? -- ain't worth a hill of beans.

Toll Roads? -- Jimmy crack corn and I don't care.


Fireworks? Effing A!!!

The Lakers go to Steak N' Shake

I have had both In N' Out and Steak N' Shake and I may have a regional bias, but I have to go with Steak N' Shake as well.

I challenge the blog author Kevin Ding and the Lakers to go to Workingman's friend next time. It's a bar on the near westside that doesn't even have its own website, I recommend that the LA contingent only go in the daylight hours though.

It was not an altogether waste of time and effort for the Lakers to come to Indianapolis, even though they got blown out by the Pacers. The night before the game, word is Lamar Odom led a large contingent of players into Steak 'n' Shake, which diehard blog readers will recall is so tasty to me that I blasphemously dared call it superior to In-n-Out Burger. (I've managed two trips in about 12 hours.)

For the record, Brian Cook -- Midwestern born and bred, as I was -- spoke up in the locker room before the game on the side of Steak 'n' Shake. Luke Walton came in and at least acknowledged the quality of it before showing his Western roots by having to side with In-n-Out in the debate.

Locker Talk Blog

Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Senator Lieberman is Bush's biggest cheerleader

Check out the picture in this blog and you will see Senator Lieberman beat not only every Democrat, but every Republican out of his seat as well when Bush proclaimed "We're winning the war in Iraq".

God, I hope he loses in the primary this year.

From the "For what it's worth" file

Should the Indiana General Assembly pass a bill requiring doctors to tell women preparing to undergo abortions that life begins at conception?

No: 59%

Yes: 41%

Total Votes: 5179

Poll found on main page of Indianapolis Star


Laila Ali wouldn't want her own kids to be boxers. I am sure her father did not want her to box either. She's made it inevitable now.


Over the past few months I have noticed a few strange references to Chuck Norris on the internet. A few examples:

The Great Wall of China was originally created to keep Chuck Norris out. It failed miserably.

Chuck Norris can win a game of Connect Four in only three moves.

There is no theory of evolution, just a list of creatures Chuck Norris allows to live.

Chuck Norris once ate three 72 oz. steaks in one hour. He spent the first 45 minutes having sex with his waitress.

Chuck Norris has counted to infinity. Twice.

Apparently, this phenomenon has gotten so big that Wikipedia has had to lock its Chuck Norris entry because users kept editing his entry with their own outrageous claims. The online encyclopedia has created a separate Chuck Norris facts page. The popularity of Chuck Norris Facts has been featured in the Washington Post as well. I know Jean-Claude Van Damme and Steven Seagal are jealous.


Also, see Lawgeekgurl's post which demonstrates how broad and sweeping the anti-protest portion of the Patriot Act is.
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