Saturday, June 30, 2007

Just A Thought... is just me, or do Apple's non-computer products get way the hell too much publicity and hype relative to their computers? I don't have an iPhone, don't plan to get one, still don't have an iPod either, but when I went to buy myself a new computer some months ago, I made the switch to Mac and have been very happy with it. Meanwhile, everyone and their brother's talking about Microsoft Vista and how it's so great...or, well, maybe not.
Call it a cult if you want, and I can see why a lot of people would think that, but Macs are awesome computers...more expensive then comparable PCs, but just like a good firearm, a good computer doesn't come cheap. If you ever get the spare cash in your pocket, you oughta try one out.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

What Was Reba Thinking?

I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I love traditional country music, but I am not completely locked into it; I'll listen to just about anything these days, and my music collection's really diversified in the last few years and no doubt will keep doing so. That said, I just have to ask...what on God's green earth was Reba McEntire doing when she decided to cover Kelly Clarkson?
I really like Kelly, and "Because Of You" is one of the best songs on the Breakaway cd, but I think some things are just better left alone and this was one of them. I suppose you could call this just the latest milestone in Reba's decline. She made some of the best traditional country to come out of the '80s..."Somebody Should Leave," "One Promise Too Late," "How Blue," and the list goes on. I hated to see her get away from that as the '90s rolled around, as I'd hoped to see her take a lesson from George Strait; some of his stuff has been a little more pop-sounding, but on the whole I think it's safe to say that he hasn't gotten that far from what got him to where he is. The same can't be said for Reba, especially in recent years, and it would seem she'd paid for that at least a little bit, as she hasn't gotten quite as much radio airplay as she once did. (And it should be noted that the Strait man is still a fixture on country radio, at least around here.) I don't know if I'd go so far as to call this a desperate attempt at popularity with the younger generation, but all the same I just don't like it.
It could have been worse, though. She could have covered "Gone" or "Walk Away."

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

One More Reason...

...that the only permit to carry we need should be the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution: (from the Houston Chronicle)

People who received concealed handgun permits through a Harris County deputy constable charged with falsely claiming his students had completed the proper training could have their licenses suspended or revoked, a Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman said Tuesday.

"That's something we would certainly look into," said DPS spokesman Tom Vinger. "Whether or not the licenses would be suspended or revoked would be dependent on further investigation."

Deputy Wilbert Jue, 52, was fired from his job in Precinct 1 Constable Jack Abercia's office on Monday after being charged with two felony counts of tampering with records. He was released from jail that same day on a $4,000 bail.


"The allegations are that he falsified documents that his students performed hours or accomplished the necessary tests to carry a concealed weapon under our law," said Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal, whose office led the investigation along with the Houston Police Department.

So many people say we should have to go through government certification to be permitted to carry a concealed weapon...but what happens when the government agents basically drop the ball, or in this case willfully throw it down? The Texas CHL isn't cheap...$140 plus whatever your instructor charges for the class, and we're not even getting into the cost of a good weapon or ammunition for that weapon. And now God only knows how many people are in danger of getting their licenses revoked after laying down that money. Probably at least $200 down the drain for each of them. Way to go, Wilbert Jue...way to effing go. The state should make you pay that money back to each CHL holder who loses his license, but I'm betting they won't, and as I said, things like this are just one more reason the only permit we need should be the Second Amendment...and the only reason is our natural, God-given right to protect ourselves and our loved ones from harm.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday Morning Political Musings

...from the nightly blog-run...

First up, from a commenter at Hot Air:

I still worry that the life/guns/amnesty people will bail.
Yeah, damn those knuckle-dragging rubes who think there are other things that are just as important as fighting fundamentalist Muslims. Some people might think this to be a bit of a stretch, but I don't think it's that outrageous to contend that if the American people had not been so indoctrinated over the last 30 years or so with anti-gun propaganda, they'd be more willing to fight threats that come from the outside (as with the fundie Muslims), because it seems with all the anti-gun propaganda has come the promotion of a "let-the-badguys-take-what-they-want," or "let-the-police-handle-it" mentality..but when police get killed, or soldiers die, it has always seemed that people from various corners advocate either more restrictions of citizens rights (as with Bill Clinton's odious semiautomatic rifle ban) or cutting and running. In short, the American people have been conditioned to believe that conflict is bad and should be avoided at all costs, even when the conflict carries the potential of a positive outcome, as in a mugger with a knife getting a .45-caliber hole in his forehead as he tries to take your wallet. Rudy may well be willing to fight the fundamentalist Muslims, but his past record has shown he has no compunction whatsoever about not letting the American people fight the wolves in their midst instead of waiting on someone ELSE with a gun to do it. One more time...were it not for 9/11, we'd all be saying, "Rudy who?"

Next up, from Sithmonkey at Cold Fury...
If you think the people “doing the jobs the lazy Americans won’t do” are grateful for the chance to mow your lawns, bus your tables, and wipe the dirty asses of your spoiled rotten brood, you’re deluding yourself.

They’re bitter and resentful as hell.

How can any sane individual believe that an immigrant, illegal or otherwise, will be excited about assimilating into a culture that only sees them as a source of easy votes, or cheap labor?

France had the same attitude with the African immigrants they brought in as cheap labor…we all know how that snuck around and bit them in the ass…

Excellent point indeed...but of course, we Americans are a hell of a lot better armed than the French, at least in some quarters. It would be quite interesting to see how things would play out in Boston, as opposed to a place like Dallas, in the case of Mexican immigrants raising hell like the Africans did in France. In any event, it's not something I for one would like to see.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Political Musings For Your Wednesday Morning

First up, via the inimitable Kim du Toit, we have this, from Bill Quick:

The moment Fred Thompson enters the GOP race, Rudy ceases to be a viable candidate for the nomination. Here’s why: Absent a real conservative contender, Rudy can capitalize on the base’s visceral loathing for McCain, and swing them into his camp on the basis of the leadership issue - if not happily, at least with resignation.
I really would love to know what they're saying to themselves in Rudy's camp away from the cameras and the microphones. You know Fred has to be scaring the bejesus out of them. Hell, he hasn't even officially declared his candidacy yet and he's already just six points behind in the L.A. Times poll. And personally, I wouldn't be terribly surprised to find out that the pollsters had to rig the poll to get Fred even that far behind.
As for the immigration bill, I really can't do better than du Toit's suggestions: Secure the border, deny benefits to illegals, deport them if they keep coming, and of course, make English this country's official language and mandate that it be learned by those who want to come here. John Walton, from the Walton & Johnson show, pretty much summed it up, as far as I am concerned:
"If you don't have borders and a common language, you don't have a country."

Would that our leaders took that to heart, as opposed to basically throwing our country away for another few terms in office.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Gun Grabbers Singing the Same Old Song

Via THR, Dennis Henigan of the Group Formerly Known as Handgun Control on the Parker v. D.C. decision:

The Second Amendment is the only provision in our Bill of Rights that actually states its own purpose. It says a well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. And the Court has held, the Supreme Court has held, that that statement of purpose must be taken seriously and the right must be evaluated and interpreted in light of that purpose. And by ignoring that purpose the D.C. Circuit not only contradicted the Supreme Court but also years of precedent which establishes that it is not legitimate for courts to edit the Constitution. The courts must interpret the Constitution as it was written by the framers. That is what the D.C. Circuit did not do.

It would seem Mr. Henigan conveniently left out a critical part of the Second Amendment -- although, even if he had included it, of course, he'd have gone back to the militia as being what the 2A protects. Of course, going back to what the Founding Fathers believed, that's absolute lunacy, which Mac Johnson at Human Events summed up very nicely:

Henderson's second insight was that despite the right belonging to "the people" in the amendment, it actually belonged only to the militia as an organized military force. To believe this, you have to believe that the United States is the only nation on Earth that felt a need to guarantee its government, in writing, the right to have an army -- which is possible, I suppose, if Jefferson foresaw the attitude of the modern Democrat party towards the military.

And, of course, anyone who knows anything about what the Founding Fathers believed knows damn good and well that almost to a man, they absolutely despised the idea of a standing army. Which by process of elimination leaves only the people -- individuals -- you, me, and every other individual -- that have the right to keep and bear arms. Why anyone with even a shred of critical thinking skills left ascribes any kind of benevolent motive, or gives any kind of legitimacy, to Henigan and his band of nanny-staters is completely beyond me. Some time ago, Kevin Baker came across this anonymous quote:
Simply put, gun control cannot survive without an accompanying sea of disinformation.
And it just hasn't been said any better than that. If the people at large were nearly as informed and educated as they should be, gun control in this country would be six feet under.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Not Quite Sure What to Say To This...

...but, OUCH! (via Nashville is Talking, via SayUncle)

It goes without saying that the term “house negro” gets bandied about with great frequency against anyone of seemingly African descent when they are on the Right. Be you Clarence Thomas, Condoleeza Rice, Michael Steele, or J.C. Watts, you can expect a Harry Belafonte, a Danny Glover, or yes - even a Steve Gilliard to call you out for being the race traitor that you are. The sell-out, Oreo cookies who do Whitey’s bidding and put a black face on racist policies that would otherwise be rightly called out for what they are. Uncle Thomas and Aunt Thomasinas alike.

But really, who is doing whose bidding in those situations? Can Howard Dean call Condoleeza his “do right answer mammy who be smart”? Can James Carville call out Clarence for collard greens?

Which brings us to today’s marquee morbidity. The tragic, untimely death of Donk House Negro and all around bigot Steve Gilliard. Who knew that boiling bacon grease in a spoon and mainlining it into the neck vein was bad for your health?

Not exactly the classiest thing to do upon a man's untimely death, but it's about on par with the race-baiting vitriol Mr. Gilliard freely slung before he shuffled off this mortal coil. No doubt many remember the creation below...

That MS Paint creation was in response to then-Maryland U.S. Senate candidate Michael Steele's lack of objection to then-Governor Robert Ehrlich's speaking to supporters at the Elkridge Club, a country club that up to that point had never had any black members. Of course, what Gilliard and his ideological soulmates conveniently failed to mention was that Democrats had also used said club, and that blacks were more than welcome to join; it was just that none had, up to that point. And, of course, you'll see Smantix (author of the above-quoted obit) savaged in the post's comments for being insensitive, racist and everything else, while the people calling him out as such resort to the same asshattery that Gilliard and those who agreed with him did when this issue with Steele was in the news. Leftist hypocrisy at its finest.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Remembering: 63 Years Ago Today

Patton's speech to the troops, before they stormed the beaches at Normandy...

"Be Seated."

"Men, this stuff we hear about America wanting to stay out of the war, not wanting to fight, is a lot of bullshit. Americans love to fight - traditionally. All real Americans love the sting and clash of battle. When you were kids, you all admired the champion marble player; the fastest runner; the big league ball players; the toughest boxers. Americans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser. Americans despise cowards. Americans play to win - all the time. I wouldn't give a hoot in hell for a man who lost and laughed. That's why Americans have never lost, not ever will lose a war, for the very thought of losing is hateful to an American."

"You are not all going to die. Only two percent of you here today would die in a major battle. Death must not be feared. Every man is frightened at first in battle. If he says he isn't, he's a goddamn liar. Some men are cowards, yes! But they fight just the same, or get the hell shamed out of them watching men who do fight who are just as scared. The real hero is the man who fights even though he is scared. Some get over their fright in a minute under fire, some take an hour. For some it takes days. But the real man never lets fear of death overpower his honor, his sense of duty to this country and his innate manhood."

"All through your army career you men have bitched about "This chickenshit drilling." That is all for a purpose. Drilling and discipline must be maintained in any army if for only one reason -- INSTANT OBEDIENCE TO ORDERS AND TO CREATE CONSTANT ALERTNESS. I don't give a damn for a man who is not always on his toes. You men are veterans or you wouldn't be here. You are ready. A man to continue breathing must be alert at all times. If not, sometime a German son-of-a-bitch will sneak up behind him and beat him to death with a sock full of shit."

"There are 400 neatly marked graves somewhere in Sicily all because one man went to sleep on his job -- but they were German graves for we caught the bastard asleep before his officers did. An Army is a team. Lives, sleeps, eats, fights as a team. This individual heroic stuff is a lot of crap. The bilious bastards who wrote that kind of stuff for the Saturday Evening Post don't know any more about real fighting, under fire, than they do about fucking. We have the best food, the finest equipment, the best spirit and the best fighting men in the world. Why, by God, I actually pity these poor sons-of-bitches we are going up against. By God, I do!"

"My men don't surrender. I don't want to hear of any soldier under my command being captured unless he is hit. Even if you are hit, you can still fight. That's not just bullshit, either. The kind of man I want under me is like the lieutenant in Libya, who, with a Lugar against his chest, jerked off his helmet, swept the gun aside with one hand and busted hell out of the Boche with the helmet. Then he jumped on the gun and went out and killed another German: All this with a bullet through his lung. That's a man for you."

"All real heroes are not story book combat fighters either. Every man in the army plays a vital part. Every little job is essential. Don't ever let down, thinking your role is unimportant. Every man has a job to do. Every man is a link in the great chain. What if every truck driver decided that he didn't like the whine of the shells overhead, turned yellow and jumped headlong into the ditch? He could say to himself, "They won't miss me -- just one in thousands." What if every man said that? Where in hell would we be now? No, thank God, Americans don't say that! Every man does his job; every man serves the whole. Every department, every unit, is important to the vast scheme of things. The Ordnance men are needed to supply the guns, the Quartermaster to bring up the food and clothes to us -- for where we're going there isn't a hell of a lot to steal. Every last man in the mess hall, even the one who heats the water to keep us from getting the GI shits has a job to do. Even the chaplain is important, for if we get killed and if he is not there to bury us we'd all go to hell."

"Each man must not only think of himself, but of his buddy fighting beside him. We don't want yellow cowards in this army. They should all be killed off like flies. If not they will go back home after the war and breed more cowards. The brave men will breed brave men. Kill off the goddamn cowards and we'll have a nation of brave men."

"One of the bravest men I ever saw in the African campaign was the fellow I saw on top of a telegraph pole in the midst of furious fire while we were plowing toward Tunis. I stopped and asked what the hell he was doing up there at that time. He answered, "Fixing the wire, sir." "Isn't it a little unhealthy right now?," I asked. "Yes sir, but this goddamn wire's got to be fixed." There was a real soldier. There was a man who devoted all he had to his duty, no matter how great the odds, no matter how seemingly insignificant his duty might appear at the time."

"You should have seen those trucks on the road to Gabes. The drivers were magnificent. All day and all night they rolled over those son-of-a-bitching roads, never stopping, never faltering from their course, with shells bursting around them all the time. We got through on good old American guts. Many of these men drove over forty consecutive hours. These weren't combat men. But they were soldiers with a job to do. They did it -- and in a whale of a way they did it. They were part of a team. Without them the fight would have been lost. All the links in the chain pulled together and that chain became unbreakable."

"Don't forget, you don't know I'm here. No word of the fact is to be mentioned in any letters. The world is not supposed to know what the hell became of me. I'm not supposed to be commanding this Army. I'm not even supposed to be in England. Let the first bastards to find out be the goddamn Germans. Someday I want them to raise up on their hind legs and howl, 'Jesus Christ, it's the goddamn Third Army and that son-of-a-bitch Patton again.'"

"We want to get the hell over there. We want to get over there and clear the goddamn thing up. You can't win a war lying down. The quicker we clean up this goddamn mess, the quicker we can take a jaunt against the purple pissing Japs an clean their nest out too, before the Marines get all the goddamn credit."

"Sure, we all want to be home. We want this thing over with. The quickest way to get it over is to get the bastards. The quicker they are whipped, the quicker we go home. The shortest way home is through Berlin. When a man is lying in a shell hole, if he just stays there all day, a Boche will get him eventually, and the hell with that idea. The hell with taking it. My men don't dig foxholes. I don't want them to. Foxholes only slow up an offensive. Keep moving. And don't give the enemy time to dig one. We'll win this war but we'll win it only by fighting and by showing the Germans we've got more guts than they have."

"There is one great thing you men will all be able to say when you go home. You may thank God for it. Thank God, that at least, thirty years from now, when you are sitting around the fireside with your grandson on your knees, and he asks you what you did in the great war, you won't have to cough and say, 'I shoveled shit in Louisiana.' No, Sir, you can look him straight in the eye and say, 'Son, your Granddaddy rode with the Great Third Army and a Son-of-a-Goddamned-Bitch named George Patton!'"

"That is all."
Rest in peace, you magnificent sons of bitches. May we always be worthy of your sacrifice.

(h/t Bob Owens)

Saturday, June 02, 2007

What's the Difference, When It's All Said And Done?

I really like Bryan Preston's blogging over at Hot Air, but considering he's such a shill for Rudy Giuliani, this attitude is really starting to burn my arse:

My own support for Fred depends on the extent to which he runs on issues instead of persona. Every candidate has to run on both and he’s had plenty to say in his radio commentaries so I’m not too worried, but if we end up seeing too much of the pick-up truck or hearing too much about whittling or whatever and it turns into a “he looks the part” campaign, I’m going to balk.

I can almost understand what Preston's saying, but when taking a look at Giuliani, what does he really have going for him besides the events of Sept. 11? I'd bet what I paid for my most recent pistol that were it not for that horrible day, we'd all be saying, "Rudy who?!" -- either that or taking a longer and harder look at his not-so-stellar-for-individual-rights record in New York City, or all of the above. I mean, speaking of image, that's the beginning and the end of Rudy, as far as him being a Republican that other Republicans would really be proud to vote for is concerned -- at least that segment of the party that still thinks smaller government & lower taxes should be what the Pachyderm Party is all about. At this point I really don't care how Thompson tries to cast himself in the race, because he has arguably shown his conservative bona fides to be stronger than those of every other candidate on the GOP side of the race, with the exception of Ron Paul. Cornbread 'n' taters 'n' pickup-truck imagery or not, if there's still any hope for libertarian conservatism in this country, Thompson will beat Giuliani like a red-headed stepchild. You can be damn sure Fred! will have my vote between those two.