Alarming News

May 27, 2005

All weekend long


You can listen to a replay of ‘Hoist the Black Flag’, hosted by Ace and myself, by clicking the above logo. Our guests were Scott Johnson of Powerline and Daniel Pipes of the Middle East Forum. The replay will happen as follows:

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Be sure to listen live this Tuesday at 4pm when our guests will be Herman Cain and Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs.

First they came for the guns, but I wasn’t a gun-owner so I did nothing…

….then they came for the pointy knives…..

Fortunately, this lunacy is not happening in America, it’s happening in Britain where they will not rest until law-abiding people are completely defenseless against criminals who will disregard these weapon laws as they disregard the rest.

In the United States, where people are more likely to debate gun control than knife control, partisans on both sides sounded amused. Wayne LaPierre, executive vice president of the National Rifle Association, asked, “Are they going to have everybody using plastic knives and forks and spoons in their own homes, like they do in airlines?”

When Ms. Summers and I have argued over gun-control and I’d say ‘what about baseball bats, should we ban those since they can be used as weapons?’ she’d roll her eyes and tell me baseball bats had uses other than harming people. What say you, Dawn, about this?

Actual caption: Manufacturers are urged to redesign kitchen knives with rounded tips.

The truth about the ACLU

When I am sent a forwarded email, I read it, run it by and then, if it’s found to be fake as nearly all of them are, I ‘reply all’ with a link to the Snopes page.

Recently, someone sent me a forward about the ACLU wanting to ban crosses on graves which are on public property. False, said Snopes.

The implication in the message quoted above — that the ACLU’s opposition to religious displays on state property extends to their advocating the removal of headstones and burial markers from federal cemeteries in the U.S. (even though the message is usually accompanied by a photograph of a European cemetery where American World War II servicemen are interred) — is another example of one group’s exaggerating their opponent’s position in order to mobilize support through political outrage.

Except now it turns out that it’s not so false. From Opinion Journal’s Taste Page:

In 1934, a gritty prospector named J. Riley Bembry gathered a couple of his fellow World War I veterans at Sunrise Rock. Together they erected the cross, in honor of their fallen comrades. The memorial has been privately maintained ever since, with small groups still occasionally meeting to remember the nation’s veterans.

A wrinkle developed in 1994, when the federal government declared the surrounding area a national preserve. With the cross now located on newly public land, the memorial soon caught the attention of the American Civil Liberties Union. Working with Frank Buono, a retired park ranger turned professional activist, the ACLU demanded that the National Park Service tear down the cross.

The worst part? We’re paying for it:

The ACLU, however, has made out quite nicely. Not only has it prevailed in the courts to date, but it has managed to pocket $63,000. Owing to a quirk in civil-rights law, the taxpayer once again ended up paying the ACLU for pressing a highly controversial church-state lawsuit.

The Civil Rights Attorney’s Fees Award Act of 1976 specifies that anyone bringing an even partly successful civil-rights suit may have the plaintiff pay all legal fees for both parties, a discretionary award that is routinely granted.


May 26, 2005

Is it still a meme if it’s unsolicited?

Mr. Wheaton links Lileks’ column about bad summer jobs and then lists his own which include department store salesman and pool boy (that last one actually explains a lot), which got me thinking about my own crazy jobs. All of these were during college:

1. Hostess at Ground Round, Prudential Mall, Boston- without a doubt, the worst job I ever had. Rude people both worked and ate there. The waitstaff would get mad if I sat black people at their table (and that included the black waitstaff) but as that was 75% of our customer base, there wasn’t a lot I could do about it. Nightmare.

2. Cashier at Store 24, Boston- I was always falling for guys who lived in other countries. There was something about guys in my dorm, on my block, hell, in my state, that was always unappealing. So, I fell for the German guy, the Scottish guy, the Greek guy. Basically, I got this job to pay my phone bills. Internet wasn’t that widespread then and if I wasn’t on the phone with the foreign guy, I’d probably have to talk to people that I’d have to see all the time. Sure, Store 24 mostly employed ex-crackheads but Boston was cold and the store was right around the corner from my apartment. I was there for awhile but it all ended when a 6′3″, 350lb guy I worked with ordered me to do something (despite not being my superior at all) and I refused. He smashed the cash register with his fist in front of customers in anger. I said ‘ok, then’, walked out of the place and never came back.

3. Bartender at a really cheesy nightclub, Scotland- This lasted all of two weeks. When you hear that they don’t tip in Europe, it’s true, they really don’t tip. Most of the people would have the exact change, to the pence, ready for me. I could’ve lived with the low pay but it was torturous watching people have fun when I couldn’t. Previous jobs in nightclubs in NY had me promoting the club and therefore basically just socializing, not having drink orders barked at me by a frantic, untipping mob.

4. Credit Card Sales, Boston- You know those people on college campuses that offer you free t-shirts in exchange for signing up for a credit card? That was me. This is not as bad a job as it sounds. I got to approach people that looked interesting and it paid pretty well. It’s the devil’s work, though. I wonder how many of those people are in debt now.

5. Surveyor for a baby stroller company, Boston- This seemed like it was the dream job. They sent me 20 surveys and were paying me $10 each. What I hadn’t counted on was that I needed to approach people with baby strollers, and therefore babies, who are the least likely people alive to complete a 5 page survey on a street corner. It took forever and was not worth the $200.

If you feel like sharing your worst jobs, leave ‘em in the comment section or trackback from your blog.

Posted by Karol at 03:16 PM | Comments (14)
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What’s going on in Europe?

–The EU constitution will probably not be approved by referendum in France. Writes Pejmanesque:

One thing I still await is an explanation as to why EU integration is a good thing. What has changed on the continent that further integration is now suddenly seen as a necessity? It cannot be just the need to balance against American power, is it? If it were, EU integration would have been more of a cause during the Cold War since it would have allowed the EU to balance against both American and Soviet power.

–Meanwhile, in Italy, Oriana Fallaci is on trial for insulting Islam. This isn’t the first time Fallaci, who smartly lives in New York, has been tried in Europe for daring to speak her mind. ‘Miss Fallaci was sued in 2002 over “The Rage and the Pride” in a French court and accused of violating anti-racist laws. The case was dismissed on a technicality.’ Paul J. Cella, writing on Red Hot:

Please, Conservatives, I beg of you: Do not simply file this away under the “Europe is dying, and we don’t care” file. Doing so amounts to laughing at a neighbor as his house burns down and the fire spreads to threaten your own.

I’m not laughing.

–Liverpool won the European Cup yesterday. There were lots of drunk fans of the team, wearing red, out in NY last night.

–Europe has also gotten Iran to promise to ‘continue its freeze on nuclear activities’. This is a situation where I wish Europe luck, but c’mon, are we really just accepting Iran’s word here?

–Gerard Schröder is having a hard time in Germany. ‘Chancellor Gerhard Schröder’s re-election hopes were dealt a fresh blow on Tuesday after a charismatic political rival said he would join leftwing groupings to run against the German leader.’ Writes the Kirk:

Schroder’s popularity has fallen from a stagnant economy, rising unemployment, and poor economic reforms.

I’m sure Schröder can whip up some anti-Americanism to get his poll numbers up. It worked so well for him the last time around.

–In Scotland, the Conservative party is deciding if it ’should sever ties from its Westminster base’. It’s an interesting idea, partly because it really can’t get much worse for Conservatives in Scotland. Before this last election, the Conservative party had one seat in all of Scotland, now it has three. Raising money will get more difficult but perhaps selling their message will be easier if they can disassociate themselves from the unpopular party.

Blogroll Update

In NY:

Two cool sites to check out from members of Communists for Kerry:

The People’s Cube


Charges against Lieutenant Ilario Pantano dropped


New York Magazine featured a story on Pantano recently and while they tried to make him seem like a nut (writing that when Pantano saw the towers fall in NY it was ‘as if he were a sleeper cell remotely activated’ as he rejoined the military), he came off looking like a good man who had been wrongfully accused by a weak member of his unit who held a grudge against him.

Michelle Malkin has been all over this story so be sure to check out her links.

Posted by Karol at 10:50 AM | Comments (5)
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Happy days are here again

My trackbacks are now working so link and trackback away!

Posted by Karol at 10:43 AM | Comments (0)
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May 25, 2005

We are so loaded

Andrew Roth has an amazing list comparing the GDP of individual US states to countries around the world. Really mind-blowing.

Via Red State.

Posted by Karol at 06:11 PM | Comments (17)
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Red State has a cool new feature called ‘Red Hot’, kind of a ‘Corner’ type of thing where Red State contributors make pithy comments on that moment’s news. My first post is up now.

Posted by Karol at 03:58 PM | Comments (0)
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Peter and Mike’s Archives Listening Project is tonight and they’re playing the Grey Album, a mix of Jay-Z’s Black Album with the Beatles’ White Album.

Long live the blogosphere

Perseus Co., a maker of Web-surveying software says the typical blogger continues to be a teenage girl who uses the medium primarily to communicate with five to 10 friends.

Last post for today via Media Bistro, promise.

Posted by Karol at 02:44 PM | Comments (4)
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Just. A. Thought.

Also via Media Bistro, Sheelah Kolhatkar, in the NY Observer, continues the discussion about the lack of female journalists in top spots at major papers. She quotes Debra Dickerson, who apparently appears on many of those all-female wishlists:

“I’m amazed at the way people list me—‘Why don’t they talk to Debra Dickerson?’ Well, they did! Everybody’s offered me a job,” said Ms. Dickerson, who has written freelance opinion pieces for The Washington Post and The New York Times. “But I was sort of hiding my light under a bushel basket, waiting for my husband to catch up. But I think nowadays, if you’ve got the stuff, you can write your own ticket.”

Huh? Let’s repeat that: “But I was sort of hiding my light under a bushel basket, waiting for my husband to catch up. But I think nowadays, if you’ve got the stuff, you can write your own ticket.”

Does anyone have a clue as to what she is saying? Maybe the women writers on those lists don’t have top jobs at top papers because they….don’t deserve them.

And the proof that we traded donor lists with the Democratic party doesn’t mean we’re not!


“PBS is not the property of any single political party or activist group or foundation or funder with an agenda of any kind,” PBS President Pat Mitchell said in a speech at the National Press Club.

Via Media Bistro.

Posted by Karol at 02:23 PM | Comments (1)
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It wasn’t clever the first time

Nightline to read the names of the war dead, again.

Posted by Karol at 02:12 PM | Comments (14)
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Carnival of the Vanities #140

Hello and welcome to the Carnival of the Vanities #140. My name is Karol, you can read more about me here. Two plugs I have to make while I have your attention:

1. I co-host a weekly talk show called ‘Hoist the Black Flag’ with Ace of Spades on every Tuesday from 4-5pm. You can listen to yesterday’s show with guests Scott Johnson of Powerline and Daniel Pipes all weekend long.

2. If you’re a Republican/conservative/whatever you want to call yourself that’s not ‘liberal’ in New York, be sure to check out my other site,

The last time I hosted the Carnival, #88 exactly one year ago today by some odd coincidence, there were only 37 entries. Today there are 71. Enjoy!

Joe Gandleman has a roundup containing quotes and links from blogs from ALL viewpoints on the filibuster deal.

Dawn Summers at Clarified doesn’t do relationship advice but she does vengeance planning like a pro.

Feminists Unite notes that a Japanese company, Panchira, is selling underwear to jealous angry men that watch women through GPS (monitors their location 24 hours a day).

Classical Values notes that if censorship in China is bad, censorship in the United States via McCain-Feingold is worse.

Electric Commentary reports on a subway series that happened in Chicago last weekend.

Half Sigma looks at the plusses and minuses of your blog to a potential employer.

Is Britain afraid of liberty? That’s the question at Liberty Cadre.

Techno-gypsy looks at those selling out the U.S for fun or profit.

Common Folk Common Sense writes that with all the talk over whether Republicans or Democrats won the battle of the filibuster, the Constitution may be the greatest loser.

Multiple Mentality writes that the female orgasm is just for fun but there’s nothing wrong with that.

Ivan Lenin looks at the role of blogging in his life.

Dave at Orac Knows catches a doctor ‘on the throne’ discussing patient matters. Should he flush?

The Glittering Eye has a great post about the Intellectual Property’s role in our trade deficit.

John Tabin points out that the NY Times columnists can be read for free in other papers after the Times institutes its fees.

Mister Snith offers this: ‘a successful Star Wars film requires both Han Solo and Darth Vader. All else is window dressing.’ for why some Star Wars films don’t work.

Soccer Dad writes that Israel correspondent, Molly Moore, of the Washington Post finds lots to admire about Hamas

Jay Allen writes that the Vader suit looks dated.

Doctor Andy looks at race and medicine.

Adam Gurri at Sophistpundit believes better arguments can be made on both sides of the issue of gay marriage.

Idler Yet asks was an article on high-tech exam cheating copied from someone else’s paper?

Critical Mastiff has a suggestion to reduce the chronic distrust of government’s intentions while going to war, by having declarations of war impose limits on government action.

Brian J. Noggle sees an inadvertent argument in favor of ending Amtrak subsidies

Tinkery Tonk compares the MSM to blogging.

Mark Daniels looks at the Newsweek story from 5 different perspectives.

Richard Lawrence Cohen writes about a critically praised book, in Britain, of stories about Anglo-Pakistani women and Anglo men was angrily withdrawn by its publisher when it turned out the author’s Pakistani name was a pen name and not actually Pakistani.

Nikita Demosthenes discovers why so many of the Star Wars flicks blow.

Newt Gingrich has some excellent qualities, but he still shouldn’t run for president writes Rick Moran at Rightwing Nuthouse.

Ferdinand T. Cat at Conservative Cat presents Arianna Huffington and the Dean Position

The Other Bloke’s Blog notes that while keyword searches are important, domain names are mostly for human beings to remember.

A doctor contemplates the alarming rise in seemingly schizophrenic people seen wandering the city streets, his office, and even his own home over at The Examining Room of Dr. Charles.

Mad Kane has a political song parody about the judicial filibuster deal made by the “moderates.”

Rick Moran at Rightwing Nuthouse presents In Defense of Cats

Interested Participant notes that Koalas are being sterilized.

Robin at the Bailwick explains why she’s never read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

Steve Pavlina’s teaches his readers to overcome the fear of Public Speaking

DeeMarie at Taken in Hand asks: Are you the Conan the Barbarian type? If you’re a woman looking for a dominant, Conan the Barbarian type man, the requirement that consent be explicit is a real drag.

John at Locusts & Honey presents Koran-Flushing Riots: A Tipping Point?

Blog Business World writes that value is added to blogs when they follow-up on old posts.

Warren Meyer at Coyote Blog presents Mistrust of Individual Decision-Making

The People’s Republic of Seabrook has decided George Galloway is their hero. No, really.

Bethlam Chronicles thinks there should be more interaction and dialogue between liberals and conservatives.

Ironman at Political Calculations looks at recent research that suggests a new approach to how a market index weights its component stocks can make a huge difference in the value of your long term investment portfolio.

The World According to Nick has a post on filibusters and notes ‘There is no constitutional provision for one party to be a check on another party. That’s the business of the voters when they go to the polls.’

Kid Various at The Idiom showcases ugly anti-Americanism.

Tex the Pontificator walks through the bullet points on a water pollution “action alert” that recently came in his email and explains why he thinks it is malarkey.

Point Five presents “Tallscreen” Format to Replace “Widescreen”

Two Dogs at Mean Ol’ Meany writes that Embryonic Stem Cell Research is not the cure for everything.

Chronicles of a Medical Mad House has a comical look into the reporting of adverse events in hospitals and the real health risk to patients.

The Unalienable Right writes on the proper scope of “Advice and Consent”

Logical Meme presents Trends in the Liberal Gay Subculture

Zendo Deb at TFS Magnum presents Newsweek: What happens now? presents Week 16 of an ongoing series looking at Social Security reform.

Buckley F. Williams at The Nose On Your Face presents ACLU Files Bear Class Action Lawsuit

Vik at the Big Pic Weblog wants the twin towers rebuilt.

Chad Hamilton at PlaidBerry presents Who is the Religious Right Anyway?

The Opinionated Bastard goes to his local health food store and finds intolerance.

Lance at Ragged Edges writes that this past 10 days or so have been a microcosm of what is wrong with the Media and those who share in its worldview.

The Palmetto Pundit presents Mainstream Media RIP?

The World According to Pete has some random notes and observations.

Incite tries to get to the bottom of what exactly happened at Newsweek, why, and what the underlying motivations were.

James at Eleventh Day Empire lists some things he hates.

Et Tu Bloge looks at competition among tech giants.

Politechnical calls for a boycott of Newsweek.

The Smallest Minority writes on the importance of the Second Amendment as it relates to the legal interpretation of the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Conservative Edge writes on the unfair coverage by the Lexington Herald-Leader and the Lousiville Courier-Journal over the Kentucky Democratic AG’s investigation into the Kentucky Republican Governor’s hiring practices.

Andy Clarkson at The Charlotte Capitalist presents “Vigorously Scratching Itches”

Loonatic Left asks if liberals are the new fundamentalists.

Smartercop highlights a public appearance by lovable Howard Dean and notes they are always a bountiful harvest, ripe for the picking-on!

Conservative Dialysis presents (YAWN) Mexico Protests Immigration Reforms

Elisson reminisces about his Scholarly Adventures with a Popular Chemical.

Rhymes with Right has another take on the Newsweek debacle.


June 1st – Blog Business World
June 8th – The Conservative Edge
June 15th – Mister Snitch
June 22nd – This Blog Is Full Of Crap
June 29th – SophistPundit

May 24, 2005

4pm today


Click the logo above to listen on

Guests will be Scott Johnson from Powerline and Daniel Pipes.

If you’ve got questions for either, please leave them in the comment section. We’ll also be taking calls during Scott’s segment so be sure to call in: 1-866-884-TALK (8255).

Update: As in week 1 and week 2, Dawn Summers will be live-blogging it over on her site.

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