Tondar's Daily Rant

Prepare yourself for the writings of Tondar the Destroyer, Baron of Atlanta, Rightful Heir to the Throne of Spain, from whom all babies come. As his will be blogged, so let it be done.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

FALCONS FEVER BABY!

I'm just about to go watch the Falcons game. But anyways wanted to lay a prediction down. You see, for the last week, the new motown here has been pumped about the Falcons playoff game tonight. I heard 2 interesting things on the radio...

First, if Michael Vick can win a Superbowl he is going to become one of the richest athletes of all time. Alotta people call him over-rated. Though I would tend to agree, he is still fabulous to watch, and he moves products.

Second, I heard Jim Mora Jr. say this is the most rested his team has been since the beginning of the season. If they don't come out too flat, look for them to really stick it to the Rams defense. Though the Sports Guy has a different take on this one...

"I like this Rams team for one simple reason: Not only can they drive down the field and get a score when they need one, but when you're watching them, you have total confidence that they're going to score. And that's saying something. I don't have that same faith in the Falcons. This line seems about 3 points too high to me. Maybe the Rams are 9-8, but there's a pretty good chance that they're a decent team that just took four months to get hot."


The Sports Guy then goes on to make a classic blunder. No, not starting a land war in Southeast Asia. No, not going against a Sicilian when death is on the line. But simply assuming that Jim Mora Jr. is going to behave like Jim Mora Sr...

"Does Mike Martz scare the holy bejeezus out of me? Absolutely. But don't forget, Jim Mora Jr. is involved in this game, and his Dad teamed up with Schottenheimer in the original Rule No. 3: "Before you select a team, make sure Marty Schottenheimer or Jim Mora isn't coaching them." Can that defective playoff gene be handed down? I say yes."


Tondar says no way. Look for the Falcons to have an easy time on offense as Mora Jr. takes the leash off of Vick and let's him really scramble like he had in seasons past. Also do not underestimate the factor this Hotlanta crowd is going to be. All dressed in red, and screaming up a storm in the Georgiadome. It's gonna be a very intimidating place to play. But anyways here's the line...

SG--Rams 30 Falcons 27
Dar--Falcons 41 Rams 28

Yeah Frank, for the next few weeks, they are gonna be MY falcons!
THE DARK SIDE OF OZ

Everybody knows about the eerie similarities between "The Wizard of Oz" and Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" when you play them together. Well, a new site is taking this a step further and has matched up some other classics, such as "Fellowship of the Ring" and Led Zeppelin's "IV" or "Toy Story" and Aerosmith's "Toys in the Attic."

Well this got Tondar thinking, what other movies match up? So last night it inspired me to put on the highly comericially poppy but brilliant "Vanilla Sky" with U2's "Pop." Yeah, not even close. About the closest thing was the beginning of "If God Will Send His Angels" as Penelope Cruz' Sofia character is introduced. But anyways, give a whirl with some of your own movies and get back to the Dar. I would love to see if this "cosmic alignment of art" can be found outside of this hippy's website.
NO CONSPIRACY, JUST A TYPICAL SCHOTTENHEIMER COLLAPSE

Back in college Frank used to talk about Marty Schottenheimer's Cheifs and how there was some NFL conspiracy preventing them from reaching the Superbowl. Well looking back to his Cleveland Browns in the 80's, and now his Chargers, it's actually starting to make sense. Though of course the Sports Guy puts it best...

"So let's give Marty the old "The more things change, the more they change" Award. He's been doing this since I was in college. In the first Playoff Gambling Manifesto, Rule No. 3 was "Before you select a team, make sure Marty Schottenheimer or Jim Mora isn't coaching them." Then a few years lapsed without a Marty playoff appearance before he resurrected his career in San Diego ... and hoodwinked me into backing him again. The lesson, as always: I'm an idiot."


See Frank, no conspiracy, just one of those things that make sports interesting.
TOP TEN OF THE WEEK

TONDAR'S FAVORITE SONGS (as of today)...

To follow the Pigpen precedent and to avoid confusion I am going to limit the list to only popesque songs of the Rock and Roll Era. I will save the argument over how to catagorize songs such as Beethoven's 5th vs. Beethoven's 5th, Movements I or III for another day.

10. Sophie B. Hawkins - "Right Beside You:"
From the album Whaler. This mid 90's dance song has a very spacey feel with its excellent use of synthesizers that complement Sophie's powerful voice. Combine that with a very unique driving beat and this song goes from simple pop to one of Tondar's all time favorites.

9. Lea Salonga - "On My Own:"
From the album Les Miserables 10th Anniversary Concert. This is the only theatre piece to make the list. Sung by Epinine, this song starts slow and builds majestically to employ the use of the full orchestra before returning to the subtle piano and Salonga's voice that began the song. What really makes it so great is the full complex range necessary to sing the song. However, it never becomes a Whitney Houston/Christina Agulara vocal show off piece. The vocals would only be noticed if somebody could not hit the notes (which Salonga nails). A very pretty song done very well.

8. BTO - "Let It Ride:"
From Bachman-Turner Overdrive II. This is the first song of love gone awry on the countdown. This soulful rocker features C.F. Turner on vocals. What I really dig in the song is the way the vocals contrast the "Let it Ride" harmony with the coarse screaming of the verses, while all being set over that rockin' "Immigrant Song" riff. You just can't help nod your head along to this one.

7. Dan Fogelberg - "Longer"
From the album Phoenix." Talk about mellow gold. I don't think any other song better manifests that late 70s easy listening sound. On top of that, there's not any song that expresses the infinite capacity of true love better than this beautiful piece.

6. Rush - "Prime Mover"
From the album "Hold Your Fire." This is probably the best "be ready for anything in life" song. It has a great rockin' sound. And its title is drawn from the medieval concept of the outter shell of the universe which is driven by God the almighty as the Prime Moving force of all energy and events. The bridge alludes to this poetically without even mentioning the Lord...

"I set the wheels in motion
Turn off all the machines
Activate the programs
And run behind the scenes

I set the clouds in motion
Turn off light and sound
Activate the window
Watch the world go around"


In typical Rush fashion, it uses history and philosophy to make a great point in our world today, while never forgetting to rock.

5. Duran Duran - "Ordinary World"
From the Wedding Album. Nobody has ever written a better ballad of lost love. Between Simon Le Bon's soaring vocals and the wailing guitars, it creates a mood of optimistic depression. On top of that, the vocals tend to have a uniquely poetic feel, especially the second verse...

"Passion or coincidence once prompted you to stay.
Pride will tear us both apart.
Well now, pride's gone out the window,
'Cross the rooftops, run away
Left me in the vacuum of my heart

What is happening to me?
"Crazy" some would say.
Where is my friend when I need you most?
Gone away."


It's interesting that the best Duran Duran song goes against their 80's image of drugs, women, and happy-go-lucky pop.

4. Dido - "Take My Hand"
Bonus Track on the album "No Angel." This 7 minute long techno suite has a very euphoric feel. The vocals, beat, synthesizers, string quartet, pianos, guitars, and drums each offer varying contributions to this very complex song. My personal favorite part is the violin solo following the second refrain. This is actually taken from Beethoven's 9th Symphony IVth Movement. (It's the part leading up to the full chorus triumphal "Ode To Joy.") But over the course of "Take My Hand" we are taken from Dido's lone voice to a full techno blow out in the fifth minute, before it fades out, dropping the strings, guitar, and finally the piano.

3. Zucchero - Rossa Mela Della Sera
From the Album "Shake." If you don't know, now you know: Zucchero is the world's greatest pop singer. He has worked with Pavioratti, Bono, John Lee Hooker, and many others. However, he remains barely known in America. This song's title translates to "Red Apple of the Evening." And like Dido's "Take My Hand," uses a variety of instruments. However, this song is very straight forward as it features great singing, harmonies (both vocal and musical), and a very catchy refrain, before fading away repeating "You," however, due to the tranlation the Italian sounds so much better than it ever would in English...

"Rosso il sole
È una mela
E sbuccia l’aria della sera
Che sei sola come me
Lo so dagli occhi
Li porterò con me sai
Quando vado via

L’amore che
Disfi e fai
Con le tue mani su di me
Quando vieni e quando vai
Lo so dagli occhi
Li porterò con me sai
Quando vado via
Li porterò con me sai
x farmi compagnia ye ye ye

Uh uh uh uh con me
Nel cuore e nell’anima mia
Uh uh uh uh con me
Rossa mela della sera

Se fossi un lago dilagherei
E se potessi pioverei
Fino in fondo agli occhi tuoi
Come un cielo
Ti porterò con me sai
Quando vado via
Ti porterò con me sai
x farmi compagnia ye ye ye

Uh uh uh uh con me
Nel cuore e nell’anima mia
Uh uh uh uh con me
Ovunque sei

Uh uh uh uh con me
Miele per l’anima mia

Uh uh uh uh sì con me
Rossa mela della sera

Tu tu tu tu tu
Tu tu tu tu tu
Tu tu tu tu tu
Tu tu tu tu tu
Rossa mela della sera"


2. Fleetwood Mac - "Go Your Own Way"
From the album, "Rumours." Lindsay Buckingham really sticks it to Stevie Nicks in this angry rocker. Though of course it reminds me of when I was being bugged by the FBI and had to talk in the car to have a private conversation...er....actually it reminds me of partying with Julene in Spain. We went into her Dad's bar on one of the biggest party nights of the year put on "Go Your Own Way" twice, danced, and sang along, pounded our beers and left. Besides the memories what I really dig is the level of anger contained within this great song. Sure it starts out like a typical rock and roll song. But by the time the refrain rolls around you know exactly who Lindsay is telling to "Go Your Own Way." Like Tondar thinking about mereDEATH, he continues to work himself up into such a frenzy of rage that every note in the second solo sounds like an expressionistic "Fuck you." In fact, you can almost hear the coked up rage going through his head...

"Die bitch, fuckin' die bitch, fuck you, I hate you so much, ugh, I hate you so fuckin' much, I'm only in this for the money, I hate you, I hate you, I hate you, your fucken tamborine can't keep up with my fingers, die bitch, die bitch, fuck you, die bitch, die bitch, die, die, die, die, die, die!"


NOTE: The Tondar translation doesn't perfectly fit the solo. But it is a solid representation of the rage that comes pouring out.

1. Rush - "Natural Science"
From the album "Permanent Waves." I will spare y'all the praise and lengthy explanation of this song once again. But you could see it comin' for the end of this list. One of the things I dig most about this song is the fact that it is so complex and deep, that it has remained my favorite song for almost 3 years now. Can't say that for "Take it Easy," "More Than a Feeling" or "Mysterious Ways."

Honorable Mention:

U2 - Mysterious Ways (Live)
U2 - So Cruel
Bread - Everything I Own
Zucchero - Baila Sexy Thing
Roxy Music - Oh Yeah
Mary Chapin Carpenter - Almost Home
BETTER CALL MULDER AND SCULLY

Looks like you can't write off all those crazy UFO spotting hillbillies...

"Now a team of American scientists note that recent astrophysical discoveries suggest that we should find ourselves in the midst of one or more extraterrestrial civilizations. Moreover, they argue it is a mistake to reject all UFO reports since some evidence for the theoretically-predicted extraterrestrial visitors might just be found there."


It's at least good to hear that scientists are actually putting some thought into the possibility that life exists on other planets. I just hope we have enough McNuggets for them when they actually show up.
CALLING ALL DORKS

Please report to the Starfleet Academy for wedgies and severe mocking. That is all.

Friday, January 14, 2005

TOP 33 OF THE FIRST 33

Be sure to check out the Sport's Guy's latest on this year's NBA season. Personally, I thought he was a bit harsh on the Pistons and Larry Brown considering all they have gone through this season including brawls, deaths, surgeries, and relearning how to play defense after yet ANOTHER rule change.

But I do think his Darko impression is pretty close...

"Two Sundays ago, the Pistons were leading the Celtics by 24 with seven minutes left, so they put Darko in the game -- he officially has an "Igby Goes Down" look to him, like a prep school kid who just got kicked out of his fifth boarding school. You can almost picture him wearing a bad blazer and sneaking a smoke behind the cafeteria. Anyway, the Celtics immediately went on a run and cut the lead down to 10 ... so Brown had to take Darko out and put one of the Wallaces back in. Poor Darko can't even stay on the court in garbage time. This is going to end badly."


It's obvious Darko entered the NBA far too early. However, I still see alotta promise in his instincts and ability. The only problem is that his contract will be up after next season. While in the meantime, he probably won't make his all-star impact until 2008. So in the meantime, as the Pistons, what do you do with him? Keep giving him junk time and make him resign for a crappy amount? Trade him for a New Jersey or LA Clippers first round pick (those never miss)? Or do you continue the dream (possible dillusion) that Darko is gonna step it up any day now and is worth every penny. Alotta scenarios here, any ideas, kids?
STICKIN' IT TO SHAQ

Brado and I have discussed this before. However, I have to admit that I'm not that big a fan of Shaq. Yeah, he's one of the all-time greats, etc, etc. However, he has really let himself go and simply relies on the officials to give him the calls and allow him to throw his 400 lbs around. Now he does have amazing consistency. However, I would much rather see that combined with explosive ability. Personally, I would take a Lebron, Tim Duncan, or Dwayne Wade on my team over Shaq any day. These are the kinda guys that will give you Shaq numbers on average, but can still explode for a great game if necessary. Remember last year during the finals? Fat Shaq had himself one huge half (game 4 I think) and by the 4th he was all tuckered out, only managing to score slightly more than his average.

Well anyways, somebody outside of the Tondar circle finally called Shaq on being a fat unstoppable blob. I am not the biggest fan of Danny Fortson. However, after reading this, he's now made "ok in my book" status.

Money Quote:

"I challenge him to take a jump hook. Take a couple jump shots. I bet you he can't do that. Of course he is going to complain about flopping because he has to be inside to score buckets. If he doesn't get inside to score buckets, he might as well give the ball to Dwyane Wade and move back."


The only thing that would made this better is if Ben Wallace had screamed it after he got taken down by an off balance Fat-Shaq trying to stay on his feet in the Finals. Of course Shaq wasn't called for a flagrant. But what do you expect from that "Slamma Jamma" powers that be.
AHH COMEDIC (PARDON THE PUN) IRONY

From Pigpen...

"Sometimes the comedy writes it self. Also, Alanis would be proud at the irony contained within. (Note the bozo's name is Dick Seed...you can't make this crap up.)"
Y'ALL YANKEES NEED A CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT

"The GR Press had this on the front page sunday. and when you look at what's going on it really does look like it is a community problem that shouldn't be dealt with by caucasians - afterall blacks HATE the GRPD, because they won't relax the enterance requirements to get into the Acadamy. At this time, they have very few minorities on staff due to the aformentioned problem and think the police "target" the minorites unfairly. Now keep in mind that minorities in today's PC, NAACP, rainbow coalition, million man march society do not include hispanics, asians or continental africans - regular American - African-Americans only. Nevertheless it's getting pretty shaky around here with the Po-leece and the blacks. The statistic that the paper had was quite heady in the fact that of the 12 homocides that occured in the city last year, all 12 victims were minorities and all but one suspect was a minority, yet every activist and reverend say that the city, police and white people are to blame.

Also there is the statement that the GR area had been apathetic until 2 teens in Grandville and Wyoming died of heroin overdoses. The quote in the paper said something to the effect of not until the problem reached the [richy rich] suburbs did the community raise a flag. Why can't EVERYONE take resonsibility for the community. The Division corridor is mostly (if not all) minority, they are the problem in this particular case, they certainly won't take to a "honkey" or "jive turkey" or whatever the hell they call us telling them about crime problems...no of course not, that would be racial profiling...idiots. Where is the responsibility of all people?

On a seperate, but related topic you may have heard of two dudes arrested in Hotlanta wanted in connection with shooting a GRPD officer. Well anyway the police were looking for these two bozo's for about a month and went to track down a friend of one of the suspects. This "friend" is now sueing the city for 1.5 million claiming that they violated his rights...blah blah blah...traffic stop...blah blah blah...racial profiling. They found the guy (in Atlanta) as a result, but now Mr. "Friend" is rasing a stink to get a pay day. If the suspect is black and his friends happen to be black and his friend is [you] then where does the connection not enter into your mind that they may ask you about it? Meanwhile the "black leaders" and "Robert S" (some AM dj who won't go away), he's got a new cross to bear after they wouldn't officially rename Franklin St. MLK Blvd. They are all yappin' about racism and "too little too late" in response to the Police Deptartment's end of year report that has caused the Dept. to take notice and rightly so.

If any of you who read the daily rant are infact a minority, write Tondar your thoughts on my rambling. It is my understanding that outside of Yeza, Brado and I are the only ones who read the rant.

Seth what is your take as a Dem?"

Well 2 quick Tondar points...

First, for a city the size of GR, 12 murders doesn't really sound that statistically significant. If all 12 happened to be black, it's a very good chance that this is merely a coincidence since 12 is hardly enough to begin any meaningful statistical study.

Secondly, it's interesting how the north is still having all these racial problems. I haven't seen this too much in the south. Neither do you encounter racist whites holding the brothers down, but rarely do you find minorities crying racist at everything that doesn't go their way. Maybe in fact, those of us in ole "Jesusland" have something to teach Canada about being a "progressive" society in the 21st Century.
PIGPEN'S PARTY

From Pigpen...

"Yet another reason why I need to run for Federal office under the "Stop your Damn Whining" platform. The earth continues to spin, Wednesday will still turn into Thursday, pay checks will still be distributed accordingly and Wal-Mart will still be the preferred retailer for WT...why do Dem's feel compelled drrraaaaggg this dead horse though town over and over again. Dead horses rot just like any living thing. This now is nothing more than a grocery sack full of glue and dog food (products made from horses incase you didn't know), yet still presented as the seemingly proud race horse they thought they had."

Thursday, January 13, 2005

HERE'S ONE TO FOLLOW?

There aren't many details on this one. But I am curious to see how this plays out as a battle between free speech and the government's right to maintain their courts as orderly private property. My guess it's a little of both, since I am rarely one to underestimate the evils of government, nor the douchebaggery of average people.
THE MEDIA PARTY

Here's an interesting look at the evolution of the "mainstream media" and its connections and influence on politics. In alotta ways Howard Fineman's writing reminds me of Seth's. Any thoughts on this one guy?
SETH'S TSUNAMI HISTORY

From Seth...

"Here's some past Tidal Waves (Tsunamis) that made their way into history:

In the fossil record, we have a number of early humans living near the North Atlantic who got hit with constant tidal waves. There's still a major argument of whether it was Seismic activity common to Europe until about 2,000 years ago, or (as I believe), an effect of the end of the last ice age causing landslides of ice that turned into waves that pelted the Scandinavian and North Atlantic coasts. It's hard to tell because there's so much bare rock in Northern Canada and Russia that there's not a lot of evidence except lots of animals in their prime dying the same year and being buried under high-salt-content dirt.

Between 1650 and 1600 B.C., the Greek island of Santorini erupted...okay, I mean completely exploded....causing a massive tsunami throughout the Meditteranean. Historically, it leveled the entire Minoan (Crete) fleet, completely obliterating the largest navy of that age. Mythologically, it's been pointed to as the most-likely origin of the Great Flood stories, Atlantis, and possibly even the 10 plagues
(frogs, locusts, disease, darkness, etc. were very likely shore-effects on Lower Egypt)

In 1606, a possible tsunami of unknown origins struck along the Bristol Channel, drowning thousands and sweeping away entire villages. While meteorologists have come up with a few theories about tidal peaks, the general consensus of what caused the flood comes from a contemporary pamphlet author: God hates Wales.

In 1755, Lisbon, Portugal survived what seismatologists have predicted was about an 8.0 earthquake just off its shore. Tens of thousands who survived the quake itself (along with falling debris, fire, etc.) by rushing to the shore were killed not an hour later by the resulting tsunami. Before the wave hit, however, the water retreated for a mile, revealing a number of lost shipwrecks. It killed a greater share of Lisbon's population than the plague, as well as wiping out our records on Vasco de Gama, Christopher Columbus, and signaled the end of the Portugese Empire. This is also when we first noticed that animals run away from the wave about an hour before the wave hits.

In 1883, Krakatoa pulled a Santorini, bl0wing its load of magma like Seth spitting out a mouthful of ham. Pretty much everyone on the Indian and Pacific coastline was affected. It wiped out the entire kingdom of Sumatra, which is now an uninhabited jungle island facing Java. It also banged up the British navy so much that Japan soon after established a formidible naval presence.

In 1946, just in case WWII didn't do enough damage the previous years, an earthquake off the Aleutian Islands caused a tsunami that killed 165 people in Hawaii and Alaska, resulting in the creation in 1949 of a tsunami warning system. Funny. Lisbon loses a third of its population and gives up its empire. We lose 165 people and we make a warning system. Go us!

In 1960, the largest earthquake ever recorded (9.5, do ya kennit!) occurred of the coast of Chile, generating most destructive tsunami of the century. While Chile's mountainous shoreline shielded most of South America, 22 hours later, the thing nailed Japan's fishing industry. When they rebuilt the area that was destroyed, they made it into the electronics capital of the world.

Four years later (1964) the Good Friday Tsunami struck the west coast of North America, killing 122 people. Our early warning system saved thousands of lives.

In 1976, a tsunami that wasn't supposed to be that big killed 5,000 people in the Moro Gulf Region of the Phillipines. Er...sorry...no early warning system for American territories. Just states.

In 1983, 104 people in western Japan were killed in another earthquake tsunami.

In 1998, a tsunami in Papua New Guinea killed roughly 2,200 people. It was caused by a 7.1 earthquate 15 miles offshore, which isn't supposed to create a tsunami, so our detection system (which now applied to the entire Pacific) didn't help. Last year, we finally discovered that the earthquake caused an undersea landslide, hence the unique, one-directional tsunami.

So here's the rundown: East Asia had one recorded tsunami for 1,000 years (1524), and has had over 40 in the last 200 years. Apparently, there's a Pacific seismic problem going on this millenium, and scientists say that it's pretty normal. Supposedly, we've got a plate moving under another and it got hung up between the Fall of Rome and the birth of the United States, providing a period of tranquility.

Anyway, from what we know, this latest tsunami was the biggest in recorded history. However, we could be about 40 years from one bigger. A Canary Islands volcano is building toward a cataclysmic eruption that, if it causes a landslide of the island's west half, could bring a tsunami down upon the East Coast of the United States. Oh, and Northern Africa would be toast."
SPOKE TOO SOON

It's funny that the same day I speak out about reclaiming some of the symbols from fascism that Prince Harry and Jean-Marie Le Pen make complete fools of themselves by showing such respect for Nazi culture. First off, Prince Harry's costume is in VERY bad taste and he should personally apologize. Secondly, Le Pen's comments aren't actually that bad...

"In France, at least, the German occupation was not particularly inhumane, although there were some blunders, inevitable in a country of 550,000 sq km."


Now this is in fact true. Compared to millions killed in occupied Poland and the Soviet Union, standard French capitulation and collaboration made the Nazi occupation quite easy. However, where Le Pen becomes frightening is his history of ignoring and glossing over the Holocaust...

Le Pen was convicted and ordered to pay a symbolic one franc fine for his 1987 comments, when he said the gas chambers were a "detail in the history of the Second World War."


Now one thing I don't understand is why the French don't have freedom of speech? Seth, you lived there for a while. Why the limit the on civil rights? Maybe I'm too American but if Le Pen is spreading horrible lies, isn't that his right to be heard and laughed out of the marketplace of ideas? It just blows my mind that he should be prosecuted for speaking ideas contrary to the official state history.
WHAT'S UP WITH THIS?

Does anybody know any details about this 100 car pile up on 96 in Michigan? What was the weather like yesterday?

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

I MISS ITALY

It's been 3 years since my semester on the Tuscan Scottish Isles :) Looking back, it's not the girls, it's not the fine Scotch, it's not Miss Margot that I miss the most. It is the personal renaissance of Tondar coming of age in a country as messed up as Italy. Most people would see this article as proof of how strange things are in Italy. But when you're there it all seems to fall into place. Whether it is fighting through a Stalinist political rally to get to Mass in the Duomo, a futbol game in the rockin' cheap seats, or witnessing the inherent corruption and laziness embedded into the society, I will never be surprised by the behavior of an Italian.

Also Paolo Di Canio's fascist salute raises another question. How long must symbols of Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy remain taboo. Not that I really want to dress up in swastikas and have a Roman style parade around Dunwoody. But the swastika was originally a Near East symbol of nature. In fact, if you go to the Carlsberg Brewer in Copenhagen, you are greeted by 4 giant stone Indian elephants with swastikas carved into their side that are about 125 years old. Also don't forget the Roman salute has a much richer history than that seen in WWII. Of course it is important to remember the horrors of the 20th Century. But we should also not forget some of our great symbols of man's past greatness in a sea of political correctness, just because they were bastardized for a short time.
ANOTHER CLINTON SCANDAL

Yeah, Dick Morris has an ax to grind against the Clintons. But being their top political advisor for most of the 90s has also given him some perspective. Check out his take on the latest Clinton scandal.
PIGPEN ON UM BASKETBALL

Pigpen setting the record straight, and preventing my hopes from getting all uppity...

"The problem with this UM team is depth. The Big10 this year is pretty deep on all rosters, with the exception of Purdue and Penn State - they suck. But...Illinios is also suspect to depth issues, but unlike UM I think that they can overcome that by rolling up teams early like they've been doing. Also lest we forget that OSU took it to Iowa 2 nights later. I realize that UM was NIT champs last year, but their sinusoidal play so far this year is gonna take more than a win over ranked Iowa, albiet in Iowa City to get me to take them more seriously than say Illinois, MSU and Wisconsin in the Big 10. My prediction is that they will finish 5th behind NW (since they have a pretty good transfer from either Dook or NC, I don't remember)."
THE EBOLA OF OUR SOCIETY

It is said that the ebola virus is so deadly that the hosts do not have time to pass on the virus before they die. In many ways the same could be said about feminism. Check out this Vox Day piece that takes a rational look at the problem of abortion and why feminism cannot survive as a philosophy.

Money Quote...

"An unconscionably stupid ideology, feminism's only redeeming characteristic is that it will likely eliminate itself before it eliminates society. Forget the Bible, even from a secular scientific perspective, it is an obvious evolutionary cul-de-sac, as delaying reproduction, embracing homosexuality and a harboring a prediliction for murdering one's young are not exactly the traits of a Darwinian survivor."
LET THE KLAN DO IT!

From Seth...

"Democracy isn't easy.

You want to be sure that when you have an unpopular idea, you can't be silenced?

Well, when driving through Missouri, a sign saying the KKK supported this particular stretch of highway says it loud and clear.

I know it's an eyesore, that the KKK didn't contribute to help the road but to get their name on the plaque. And the state is right in that people will be throwing MORE junk on that stretch of highway, defeating the purpose of the program.

Well, that's America. The KKK signed up to clean that stretch and if they don't keep it clean, their contract is voided and the sign goes down. Or, how about the sign stays up saying that the KKK offered to clean this stretch of road, and all around the sign are piles of garbage. Hah! There's a statement for ya! And if people want to take a road trip to Missouri to drop off some disgusting things for the Klan
to clean up for us, all the more power to them, so long as they don't get
fined for littering.

I got to deal with the Klan early in college when they were trying to take over Ann Arbor. The best way, everyone found, of dealing with them is to let them make a fool of themselves, not martyr them.

Of course, I like Jake and Elwoods' solution too...

01/10 11:08a CST Court Won't Block KKK From Highway Cleanup

Court Won't Block KKK From Highway Cleanup



By GINA HOLLAND=

Associated Press Writer=

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Missouri lost a Supreme Court appeal Monday over its decision to bar a Ku Klux Klan group from a highway litter cleanup program.

The court's rejection, made without comment, means that the KKK chapter must be allowed into Missouri's Adopt-A-Highway program, which is designed to save money by using volunteers for garbage pickup. Volunteer groups are publicly thanked with signs along the highway acknowledging their help.

Every state but Vermont has such a program. States supporting Missouri in the appeal argued that the Supreme Court needed to intervene so that states unwilling to partner with the KKK would not decide to abolish their programs.

The dispute involves a half-mile stretch of Missouri 21 near Potosi, a town of fewer than 3,000 in the eastern part of the state.

A KKK chapter sought permission to pick up trash along the road, but was turned down because the program is not open to groups that discriminate based on race or those that courts have said have a history of violence.

Missouri lawyers had argued that a sign marking the KKK stretch of road could lead to more dumping, and could endanger highway workers mistaken for Klan members.

The Klan sued and won on grounds that it had a First Amendment free speech right to participate.

In its appeal, Missouri attorney Erwin O. Switzer III said state leaders are ``trying to avoid giving motorists the mistaken impression that the state has anything good to say about horrific, racist group.''

He argued that the case was about government speech, not speech of the group.

Robert Herman of St. Louis, the attorney for the KKK, said that the group wants to do its part in community service and to express ``solidarity with the community.''

The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals had ruled that Missouri's ``desire to exclude controversial organizations in order to prevent 'road rage' or public backlash on the highways against the adopters' unpopular beliefs is simply not a legitimate governmental interest that would support the enactment of speech-abridging
regulations.''

Texas Solicitor General R. Ted Cruz, who filed a brief on behalf of 10 states that backed Missouri, said that states unwilling to partner with the KKK may ``forgo the economic benefits of having volunteers pick up tons of roadside trash each year.'' The 10 states are Alabama, Arkansas, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas and Vermont.

The case is Rahn v. Robb, 04-629.

Monday, January 10, 2005

MONKEY REPUBLIC WATCH

While I was in California, it seems the monkeys were not behaving themselves. Well actually it was just Paddinton Huggs who was being naughty. As usual he was playing with the stove. Turning knobs, touching buttons, watching burners turn red, just his usual foolery. However, since I had left Mr. Mojo in charge he delegated power to Lord Grumpington to watch over Paddington and the stove personally. The first few days I was gone, things were fine because Lord Grumpington had simply locked Paddinton in the bathroom. From what I understand, these were sad days of darkness with only "blue soap friend" as Paddington's only companion. Eventually Lady Sassafrass heard Paddinton's whimpers and cries, and she let him out. Well, needless to say this was quite the monkey mistake. Paddington went straight for the kitchen where he got into some Doritos while entertaining himself with the stove. Upon seeing this, Lord Grumpington was enraged and went on a hand slapping rampage. From Lady Sassafrass, to Paddington, to Melvin, to even Sir Hugs-A-Lot, everybody had a red hand when Lord Grumpington was done. As for Paddington, Lord Grumpington sent him for a spin in the washing machine screaming, "Bad monkey be good! Bad monkey be good!" the whole time. Frankly, I think Lord Grumpington's skills as a baby sitter leave much to be desired. However, the apartment was not burned down. So I am not going to be one to quibble with the results.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

RICHARDS RAGE IN BULGARIA

Talk about a real trooper. With a blood alcohol level 11x over the Canadian limit, and twice necessary to kill a man, we're looking at a great alcoholic!
MEIN GOTT, ZWEI KILOGRAM

If you're thinking about traveling abroad you should read this funny piece about German toilets. Yeah, they're pretty messed up.