Archive for August, 2005
Interestingly, Judge Benton dissented, on the view that the breath test operator's attestation was hearsay testimony.
Here somebody listed the time in the 1995 game when Gieck looked like he was going to trip Virginia Tech defensive back Antonio Banks going down the sideline for a touchdown as one of the top 10 all-time greatest Hokie sports moments (at least as of 1997). I guess that manuever didn't hurt Gieck's career; in fact, probably some of the secret societies will give him a medal.
We routinely show the world how magnanimous we can be when it comes to the poor in Africa and the tsunami-ravaged in Southeast Asia. Now it's time to show them how we take care of our own. As a famous Ghostbuster once said, "Let's show them how we do it downtown!"
NBC U Slates Katrina Benefit
By Jim Benson -- Broadcasting & Cable
The NBC Universal Television Group, which has been active in raising money during previous national disasters, has scheduled a live benefit special, A Concert For Hurricane Relief, in high-definition on NBC, MSNBC and CNBC at 8 p.m. Friday.
The hour music- and celebrity-driven broadcast will air live on the East Coast, tape
delayed on the West.
The telethon, hosted by NBC's Matt Lauer, will be broadcast entirely from 30 Rock.
The special will feature performances by artists with ties to the affected areas, including Tim McGraw, Harry Connick, Jr., and Wynton Marsalis, and feature an appearance by Leonardo DiCaprio, among others.
All viewers will be encouraged to donate to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund in support of hurricane relief through its website and donation hotline ( www.redcross.org or 1-800-HELP NOW). ( link )
The American Red Cross needs cash.
I am having dinner tonight with a new vice president and will be in meetings here tomorrow.
Then it's off on some other adventure.
Life is good ... if you can deal with O'Hare.
Stung by criticism and questions about "where's George?" George W. Bush, finally got off his duff, or rather into the air, for a 35 minute fly-over of hurricane damage. He should have come alive Sunday before land fall and Monday/Tuesday. But, not George W. Bush.
We have the best equipped military in the world. We have a massive homeland defense agency. But we are only now beginning to see the Coast Guard presence increased. If we cannot expect faster action in such dire circumstances, what's the purpose of a Defense Dept or Dept. of Homeland Security?
While Bush fumbles, people have died and are likely still dying. Perhaps a million people are homeless. New Orleans will be uninhabitable for months. This is clearly the worst disaster ever to hit the US. And we have a failure of leadership once again. We have theocracy for Iraq, a constitution selling women short there, and insufficient protection at home once again. I'm not holding my breath for Bush's belated photo-op, pretend press conference. When will the Bush administration get it's act together?
The article notes that the Wee Little Miss contestant is 21 months old. The article notes that the arresting officer consulted with both the Commonwealth's attorney and his assistant, who both happened to be at the fair on that same night.
It was the 4th anniversary of my brother Danny's death this past Monday. In honor of it, Iâ€™m posting an excerpt from â€œThe Jim and Dan Stories,â€ the book I was compelled to write after losing my brother Jim, and then Dan, a month later.
Written in a conversational style, the book is structured by short seemingly disjointed stories that eventually tells a whole story, reflective of the way the mind re-members during the grief process. Part a recounting of the last few weeks of my brotherâ€™s lives; part a humorous re-telling of growing up in an Irish Catholic family of 9 siblings during the 50s and 60s; and part a chronicle of the day to day living and writing my way through heartbreaking grief.
I thought I would post a favorite photo of Dan, but I canâ€™t seem to bring myself to inject such a visual reminder into the present right now. There are photos of Jim and Dan and the rest of my family members on my website, Silver and Gold, a site dedicated to my brothers. And my sister has also posted about losing Dan on "A Particularly Persistent Point of View."
The excerpt, â€œShoes in the Closet,â€ is one of J&Jâ€™s Momâ€™s favorite, who said she laughed and cried while reading the bookâ€¦sometimes at the same time!
Shoes in the Closet
My brother John had a dream shortly after Dan died. He had arrived at Danâ€™s apartment with the U-haul (which he actually did do weeks later) to close it down, and Dan was there. John was astounded! â€œDan, youâ€™re dead! How can this be,â€ he asked?
â€œI know Iâ€™m dead, but Iâ€™m all right,â€ Dan answered, and then he said, â€œAnd now itâ€™s like Christmas.â€ The dream continued with Dan giving away his belongings to John and other family members.
We all wanted John, the only sibling besides me now who was not living in Massachusetts, to have Danâ€™s computer. â€œWe want you online. We want to keep track of you,â€ I told him. John, the black sheep, hard drinking fisherman rouge, who had also contracted Hepatitis C from drug use in the 70â€™s and was now determined to stay sober in every way, sometimes needed to be kept track of.
When Kathy, Jeanne, (who came after my mother left), and I were staying in Danâ€™s apartment, we got a phone call from John. John had lived with Danny for several years in Quincy, Massachusetts, and then in Texas, and was particularly broken up. He cried when he asked us if he could do Danâ€™s eulogy. We all knew it was his calling, especially since our youngest sister, Tricia, had a dream that John was singing â€œLet it beâ€ in the church during Danâ€™s funeral. He didnâ€™t sing, but we did play â€œLet it beâ€ the morning of the burial, and John did give a moving eulogy for Dan. We all choked up when he ended it with, â€œâ€¦Today we put my big brother Dano to rest beside his big brother Jim. I guess that makes me the big brother now.â€
I called Danâ€™s apartment when John, Joey, and Nancy, who were going to drive Danâ€™s Toyota Tundra truck back to Massachusetts, were there to close it down. â€œI have a strange request. Bring me a pair of Danâ€™s shoes. I want to keep them in my closet,â€ I said. The request was related to one of my most vivid childhood memories, and one that has been re-stimulated with Danâ€™s passing.
When Danny was almost four years old, he went to Florida with our grandparents for the summer, but they ending up keeping him for a whole year. A year might as well be a lifetime in the mind of a child, in the minds of children. I was five and was rummaging through the room that Dan and Jim shared when I found a pair of Dannyâ€™s shoes in the closet. They were a 1950â€™s style, brown with white in the center. Finding them was an abrupt reminder of the brother I used to have, the one I had forgotten about, the one I wanted back! I carried those shoes around with me all day while I cried inconsolably. I wanted my parents to witness my anguish, so they would get my brother back home for me.
I asked for a pair of Danâ€™s shoes because I donâ€™t want to forget my brother, the child he was, the man he was. I wish he could come back, like he did from Florida.
Quicker than George W. Bush could spell q-u-a-g-m-i-r-e, the White House PR team re-branded the war "on terror" as the new and improved â€œGlobal Struggle Against Violent Extremistsâ€ (GSAVE), no doubt a new kind of faith-based initiative. In one sweep, the administration devised an elision of the two Gs (George and God) in one PR device. Old George, evoking those â€œJesus Savesâ€ billboards, must have a God complex. It was Bush, after all, who morphed images of himself and the deity when speaking from a cross-imbedded pulpit at the Republican National Convention last year. And the enablers genuflect. The way they see it, the rest of us just don't get Bush's â€œvision.â€
No sooner had the Bush administration rolled out its convenient repackaging than commentators and pundits flooded the airwaves pointing out the implicit admission that the war is un-winnable. So, G. W. took to the microphone at a plush Texas resort to see how many times he could force the word "war" into one speech. As Jon Stewart suggests, we get it: He's "the war president." Then, cable â€œnews" bullies heightened the invective against war critics. One prominent Fox bully, who can "factor," but can't add two-plus-two when it comes to the Constitution, called for the arrest of the people at Air America Radio (read more here: http://mediamatters.org/items/200506220006)! This same commentator promised to investigate every ACLU donor. Every right-wing pundit has focused his or her destructive sights on Cindy Sheehan. And, on July 22, Thomas Friedman, one of the most widely read columnists in America, and a supposed a moderate, called for an enemies list of those he calls â€œexcusers.â€ These include anyone who suggests that Bush is making matters worse in Iraq or is embarked on an imperialist agenda.
Terror is heightened fear. But, despite opportunistic fear-mongering by Bush and his apologists, the fight against fear is ours to wage within ourselves, not the government's. It was the government's job to protect us when it had abundant warnings of impending attack that infamous September. Despite the August 6, 2001 President's Daily Briefing (PDB) Bush took a month-long vacation instead. Although terrorists are to blame, Bush was negligent and manipulative in his handling of the crisis. With false linkages of Iraq to 9-11, forged documents, and fake warnings of mushroom clouds, phony evidence (e.g., aluminum tubes unrelated to weapons of mass destruction; â€œlaboratoriesâ€ that only had cooking oil; and a terrorist camp in Northern Iraq, which was actually under US and British controlled air space), the boogey-man-in-chief and his apologists ratcheted up the nationâ€™s fear level.
Intelligence and military experts, including General Richard Meyers, agree: The â€œwar on terrorismâ€ also was a flawed metaphor, because it's hard to wage a war on a tactic. When England suffered the recent series of attacks, police and security teams dismantled terrorist cells not with â€œwar,â€ but â€“ good police work. But Bush apologists think waging a war against a country, most of whose airspace we've controlled since 1991, and whose arsenal was already dismantled, is better.
The House of Prescott-Bush has been playing one side of a conflict against another for four generations. Former Republican, now Independent, historian Kevin Phillipâ€™s American Dynasty tells the sordid tale of how the Friends of George (FOG) use our tax dollars for their adventures and profit. George W. Bush did have a â€œvision,â€ but not the kind his enablers think. Back in 1996 advisors including Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz and others talked up regime change in Iraq. Originally, the plan was not to democratize Iraq, but to install a Hashemite Kingdom. Bush pulled â€œfreedomâ€ and â€œdemocracyâ€ out of sky because they sell. And let us not forget that even before election 2000, Bush advisors prepared a document arguing for regime change (The Project for a New American Century) in Sept. 2000, before Bush was even elected. Does anyone really believe that, with Halliburton contracted for 14 permanent bases in Iraq, we are there for anyone's freedom?
Finally, besides the real terrorists, the second biggest threat to America is unquestioning, permissive Bush-enablers and neo-McCarthyites who'd go â€œYeahâ€ if Bush even wink-winks the word â€œfreedomâ€ at them. Thereâ€™s nothing about freedom in what Bush is doing. It's about abuse of power; misleading Congress; dismantling the Constitution; increasing big-government control over our private lives; and no-bid contracts. These knee-jerk pseudo-patriots would leave no â€œOiligarchâ€ behind, but scapegoat their fellow citizen-messengers. They should look in the mirror. The second coming of Bush is their fault.
Catastrophes like Hurricane Katrina are often remembered by a few enduring images. One of them may well be the widely circulated photo of a New Orleans cop, wading through chest high water with an empty gas can, looking for fuel for an emergency generator.
It's unfortunate that we tend not to think very much about worst case scenarios unless we see one somewhere, but it is as good a time as any to review your region's disaster recovery plans, especially with respect to telecommunications.
With most of New Orleans flooded, wireline communications (phone, cable, Internet) are not working. Most wireless Internet systems (e.g. WiFi hotspots) are also out, because electric power and the wired Internet connections that feed them are out.
Jerry Kilgore has an A rating from the NRA. What does Jerry say about Kaine?
" "Tim Kaine is John Kerry with a Richmond addressâ€¦ Both believe the Second Amendment to be some sort of antiquated colonial relic." INDEED!
Some facts about Tim Kaine from the VA Sportsman .
"Remember: Kaine proposed using $6,600 from council's nearly $1 million discretionary account to send a group of Richmonders to Washington for an anti-gun rally, the Million-Mom March. Under criticism from council colleagues, including the one nailed recently on that tax rap, Kaine dropped the idea, opting to pay for the trip with private funds." (The Richmond Times Dispatch, 10/19/03)
FACT -- "â€¦Kaine is perceived even within his own party as well to the left on such hot button issues as gun controlâ€¦" (â€œKaine kicks up campaignâ€ Richmond Times Dispatch, November 4, 2004)
FACT -- "Lt. Gov. Tim Kaine, the presumptive Democratic nomimee, is a talented public servant, but on a couple of litmus tests -- gun control and the death penalty, for instance -- he comes up red when Virginia turns out blue." (The Virginian-Pilot, 5/18/03)
FACT -- In 2001, the NRA rated Democrat Tim Kaine a "F" candidate (2001 NRA Political Preference Chart) , while the gun ban lobby known as the Brady Campaign said "Tim Kaine is the clear choice. As Mayor of Richmond, Kaine was a strong supporter of strengthening Virginia gun laws." (11/1/01 Brady E-Action Alert)
FACT -- Tim Kaine and the Richmond City Council ordered a legal opinion on the possibility of suing gun manufacturers. (The Richmond Times Dispatch, 3/14/99)
FACT -- "The mayors want gun makers to do two things: change the way they do business and hand over a bunch of money." (Tim Kaine explaining why he wanted to join other mayors in suing gun manufacturers - The Richmond Times Dispatch, 3/14/99)
FACT -- Tim Kaine suggested that Richmond collaborate with Fairfax and Norfolk to push tougher gun control laws. (The Richmond Times Dispatch, 8/26/97)