The Skunk and Tiger

"Ignorance breeds monsters to fill up the vacancies of the soul that are unoccupied by the verities of knowledge."-Horace Mann

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Sam Considers the Duality of Duck.

Sam Guards a Bridge and Tests the New Playground Gear

....Yes, he is a little camera shy.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Sam with Santa on his Mind

The day after Thanksgiving, Sam got to meet Santa. We were first to arrive at the Santa meeeting spot in our town. When Sam saw Mr. and Mrs. Claus, he leaped out of his coat and ran towards them with his arms wide open. I did not know if he wanted to hug them or steal them. He settled down and became very quiet once he was up on Santa's lap. When Santa asked what he wanted Sam only whispered, "Ho, Ho, Ho."

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Thanksgiving Movie Suggestions.

I have much to be thankful for. It has been a great week already. I got to see family over the weekend and very close friends as well. While visiting Jay and Laura in Kalamazoo I got two see two epic films of cult fandom. Slaughter House Five and Grizzly Man. Slaughter House is based on Kurt Vonnegut's book. I have been wanting to read his work. The film is great. It is a perfect mix of historical fiction with science fiction. Grizzly Man is the documentary of a untreated alcoholic, self proclaimed environmentalist's obsession of Grizzly Bears. It does not bode well for the Grizzly Man. I also got to see the new James Bond movie, excellent, and quite a departure from the pervious installments of late. Check them out. Have a safe and happy Holiday.

Eat Turkey (unless you are a vegetarian) and be Thankful.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Police Brutality in UCLA Library.

UCLA Campus police officers tasered an unarmed student at the college Library for refusing to show his ID. The Student was attempting to leave when officers grabbed him, when the student verbally objected they used their tasers on him at least four times. On a youtube videophone clip you can hear the student being tasered and the police threatening to taser other students who are objecting to the officers conduct. This is outright brutality. It sickens me to watch this video, but I urge you to see for yourself. The behavior of the police, who outnumber the Student by at least three, is at best unjustified. If they felt the need to forcibly remove an individual who was already leaving they could have done so without use of excessive force. In the America I remember the police are required to use restraint. Is it any surprise that the student's name is Mostafa Tabatabainejad. There are many knuckle dragging mouth breathers who believe 9/11 justifies arbitrarily electrocuting muslim looking people in public places for refusing to 'show their papers'. Today those assholes can be proud of the UCLA Campus Cops. I am not.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

My Hope for Change.

The Democrats took the House and Senate and Rummy is gone. I am optimistic that the Dems will not let us down in the next two years. It will be difficult to repair the damage that the Republicans have bestowed on the constitution and the middle class over the past twelve years. A recent MSNBC internet poll indicates almost 90% of Americans feel Bush has committed offenses that would justify impeachment. While I agree George W. Bush deserves impeachment, much more than Clinton ever did, I think a call for impeachment is putting the cart before the horse. The Democrats should return the Legislative Branch back to its original purpose, oversight and investigation. There is not enough Democratic representation to impeach and there more important issues at hand. We must expose the war profiteering and unconstitutional behavior of the Bush/Cheney administration, but we also need to work with the Conservatives on the war, fair trade, environment, and the economy. My greatest hope is that the Republicans will abandon their fringe and radical wings (the Neo-Conservatives and the Religious Right), and the nation can return to a reasonable and moderate center.
Speaking of the Religious Reich, James Dobson and crew are crying in their kool-aide over the results of the '06 election. Dobson declares that the Republicans lost because they did not push harder for the Marriage Amendment and other wedge issues. It takes a while for the many American voters to realize what the real issues are and what ones are just pathetic straw men. But the Straw Men themselves never get it.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The Vote

I voted toady. Happy to see Granholm beat DeVos, sad to hear that proposal 2 may pass. It looks like the Dems will take the House but not the Senate. At least we can finally have some oversight, rather than the Bush rubber stamp 109th congress. I am hopeful but nervous about the future.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Evangelical Troubles.

There are so many topics in the news right now that I want to mention before the election on Tuesday. Today more news came out about Ted Haggard, who recently resigned as President of the National Association of Evangelicals, and has been fired from his position as the Pastor for a gigantic mega church in Colorado Springs. In a recent statement the former pastor stated,

"The fact is I am guilty of sexual immorality. And I take responsibility for the entire problem. I am a deceiver and a liar. There's a part of my life that is so repulsive and dark that I have been warring against it for all of my adult life".

I do not find it repulsive that Haggart is a homosexual. It is sad that he apparently was living a lie, as many homosexuals have done, because of social stigma, hate, stereotyping, and disinformation. What I find the most deceitful is Haggard's leadership of an organization and an ideology that promotes, approves, and distributes numerous falsehoods on many topics, not just gays. Haggard and the evangelical movement have been misrepresenting Science and Medicine: Evolution, Stem Cell Research, Birth Control. Haggard and many Christian Nationalist have also attempted to rewrite American history and the meaning of the Constitution. Ted Haggard apparently had the privilege of consulting with President George W. Bush on a weekly basis on National and International Policies. The Religious Right continues to support an war based on lies and a corrupt Republican party, all the while demonizing Democrats, Intellectuals, and Liberals.

I do not expect people like Haggard or James Dobson to change their minds or disparaging rhetoric, they have a right to believe what they want. Theocracy, however, has no place in a free society or in its government. There can not be checks and balances on God, and if we do not make some changes next Tuesday the deceivers and liars will continue to govern without having to answer to anyone but God.

...It was also in the news that Kent Hovind aka Dr. Dino, a Creationist some of my friends are familiar with, is going to jail. Apparently Dr. Dino does not believe in evolution or paying taxes.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

NY Times' Friedman: Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld think you're stupid

Published: Saturday November 4, 2006

"George Bush, Dick Cheney and Don Rumsfeld think you're stupid," writes Tom Friedman, in an editorial that appeared in Friday's edition of The New York Times.

"They think they can take a mangled quip about President Bush and Iraq by John Kerry -- a man who is not even running for office but who, unlike Bush and Cheney, never ran away from combat service -- and get you to vote against all Democrats in this election."

Friedman's op-ed comes amid fallout from Sen. Kerry's "botched joke" at a political rally last Monday in which he was attempting to tie poor education to the President getting the nation mired in war. The Bush administration has intently implied that Kerry was insulting the military itself. Kerry later apologized to troops, but did not back down from his criticism of the White House, as RAW STORY has reported .

Friedman continues, "They think that they can get you to overlook all of the Bush team's real and deadly insults to the U.S. military over the past six years by hyping and exaggerating Kerry's mangled gibe at the president."

He adds, "The Bush team has created a veritable library of military histories ... all of which contain the same damning conclusion offered by the very soldiers and officers who fought this war: This administration never had a plan for the morning after, and we've been making it up -- and paying the price -- ever since."

Further excerpts from the subscription-only article follow...


What could possibly be more injurious and insulting to the U.S. military than to send it into combat in Iraq without enough men -- to launch an invasion of a foreign country not by the Powell Doctrine of overwhelming force, but by the Rumsfeld Doctrine of just enough troops to lose? What could be a bigger insult than that?

What could possibly be more injurious and insulting to our men and women in uniform than sending them off to war without the proper equipment, so that some soldiers in the field were left to buy their own body armor and to retrofit their own jeeps with scrap metal so that roadside bombs in Iraq would only maim them for life and not kill them?

And what could be more injurious and insulting than Don Rumsfeld's response to criticism that he sent our troops off in haste and unprepared: Hey, you go to war with the army you've got -- get over it.


Everyone says that Karl Rove is a genius. Yeah, right. So are cigarette companies. They get you to buy cigarettes even though we know they cause cancer. That is the kind of genius Karl Rove is. He is not a man who has designed a strategy to reunite our country around an agenda of renewal for the 21st century -- to bring out the best in us. His "genius" is taking some irrelevant aside by John Kerry and twisting it to bring out the worst in us, so you will ignore the mess that the Bush team has visited on this country.


Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Happy Halloween