Saturday, December 29, 2007

No matter what happens, Pakistans nuclear weapons are secure. Unless they aren't. Just like ours, huh Air Force?

What About the Nukes -Newsweek

By the way, Russel Means ran for vice president under Larry Flynt in 1984.

More About the Sioux effort to declare sovereign nation status

In December, a Lakota (Sioux) delegation delivered a statement of "unilateral withdrawal" to the State Department. In other words, it plans to secede. Not all Lakota, just the delegation, which was led by Russell Means. He, of course, is famous for surviving the siege at Wounded Knee in 1973 and founding the American Indian Movement (AIM), as well as for his movie roles.

Means, however, also announced that his group planned to file liens on property in parts of South Dakota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Montana and Wyoming. "The Missouri River is ours, and so are the Black Hills," he said.

But while Means taketh away with one hand, he giveth with the other. He invites one and all to live in the Lakota Nation, tax-free, as long as they renounce their U.S. citizenship. Don't worry: It will issue drivers' licenses and passports.

Once Americans get it through their heads that this isn't a reprise of the Confederacy, many might find the idea of a nation free of taxes, as well as war, appealing. After all, like Ron Paul, Means is a libertarian, under which guise, he too has run for president.

One can imagine the federal government's response: "Go ahead, enjoy your little secession. Of course, we won't be subsidizing your reservations anymore." Plus you have no chance whatsoever to change your mind about the $122 million in compensation the Supreme Court awarded you a couple of decades ago and which you refused."

Primal frontier fears resurface: Will the redskins return to their renegade roots and take revenge -- not to mention scalps? Not likely. Still, the first person with whom I shared the Lakotas' plans for secession said, "Oh great, it's bad enough we have to worry about the terrorists. Now, this too."

But Bolivia's president Evo Morales, as well as Venezuela are following events closely. Those Americans bent out of shape about the "NAFTA Superhighway" from Mexico to Canada may as well start worrying now about One Indigenous Continent for All.

The Tiger didn't go Crazy, the Tiger just went Tiger

Seeing the news about the Tiger attacking three people in the SF zoo made me think of this:

When I lived in Fayetteville, NC every once in awhile in the parking lot of car dealerships and Sam's club you would see a gentleman with a full-grown Tiger under a tent-like shelter sitting on a large table. The Tiger was chained up and looked fairly docile (drugged, or just well fed and sleepy, maybe just old) and you could bring your children up to pet it (for a fee). I always said screw that. As interesting as these animals are, they are extremely dangerous and deadly. They are not pets, and I always thought that anyone who would let their children pet a predator like that was a complete idiot. But that's just my opinion. Maybe they're just big kitties. Until they eat you.

Anyway, You mess with the Tiger.........

Friday, December 28, 2007

Super-Duper! Nuclear power with a large population of religious nutballs on the verge of civil war. No, it's Pakistan.

Pakisan Government says Al Qaeda did it. DUH. Those guys do everything.

So how did she actually Die? Shot or blown up? Both?

Bush forced to rethink policy on Pakistan. Could this headline be anymore generic?

Aftermath of Bhutto assasination.


October 27, 2007: On October 22nd, Osama bin Laden admitted that al Qaeda had lost its war in Iraq. In an audiotape speech titled "Message to the people of Iraq," bin Laden complains of disunity and poor use of resources. He admits that al Qaeda made mistakes, and that all Sunni Arabs must unite to defeat the foreigners and Shia Moslems. What bin Laden is most upset about is the large number of Sunni Arab terrorists who have switched sides in Iraq. This has actually been going on for a while. Tribal leaders and warlords in the west (Anbar province) have been turning on terrorist groups, especially al Qaeda, for several years. While bin Laden appeals for unity, he shows only a superficial appreciation of what is actually going on in Iraq.

Bin Laden doesn't discuss how the Americans defeated him. It was done with data. Years of collecting data on the bad guys paid off. Month by month, the picture of the enemy became clearer. This was literally the case, with some of the intelligence software that created visual representations of what was known of the enemy, and how reliable it was. The picture was clear enough to maneuver key enemy factions into positions that make them easier to run down.

Saddam's henchmen, the main enemy, were no dummies. They were smart enough, and resourceful enough, to build a police state apparatus that kept Saddam in power for over three decades. However, for the last three years, that talent has been applied to keeping the henchmen alive and out of jail. But three years of fighting has reduced the original 100,000 or so core Saddam thugs, to a few thousand diehards. Three years ago, there were hundreds of thousands of allies and supporters from the Sunni minority (then, about five million people, now, less than half that), who wanted to be back in charge. Now the remaining Sunni Arabs just want to be left in peace. Thus the Sunni nationalists of in the Baghdad suburbs are shooting at, and turning in, their old allies from Saddams Baath party and secret police. This isn't easy for some of these guys, but it's seen as a matter of survival. While the fighting in and around Baghdad is officially about rooting out al Qaeda, and hard core terrorists, it's also about taking down the Baath party bankers and organizers who have been sustaining the bombers with cash, information and encouragement.

Bin Laden can't openly talk about any of this, because that would be admitting he had made a deal with the devil back in 2004, when al Qaeda and the Iraqi Sunni Arab terrorists united. The Baath party has always been secular. Not exactly anti-religion, but not something al Qaeda could openly embrace. Many of the Iraqi Sunni Arab terrorists are religious, but not religious enough for the al Qaeda hard core. And it's the hard liners that usually set the agenda. That's a fatal flaw with groups that depend on terrorism to keep the fight going. Cracking down on the hard core requires more clout and muscle than al Qaeda possesses these days. And that's another unspoken reason by bin Laden is singing the blues.

Bin Laden's latest audio recording brought forth a furious reaction from many of his followers. The main complaint was that only excerpts of the message were being reported on by the Arab media, and that if the entire message were put out there, the excerpts would not appear so damaging. The excerpts concentrated on bin Laden admitting mistakes, criticizing al Qaeda operations in Iraq and urging Islamic radicals to get their act together.

Al Qaeda is under a lot of pressure of late. In addition to defeat in Iraq, the organization is being battered in North Africa, South East Asia, Somalia, Afghanistan and Pakistan. Bin Laden has not got any good news to talk about, and that's what's really got his followers angry.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Christmas Truce of 1914

During World War I, on and around Christmas Day 1914, the sounds of rifles firing and shells exploding faded in a number of places along the Western Front in favor of holiday celebrations in the trenches and gestures of goodwill between enemies.

At the first light of dawn on Christmas Day, some German soldiers emerged from their trenches and approached the Allied lines across no-man's-land, calling out "Merry Christmas" in their enemies' native tongues. At first, the Allied soldiers feared it was a trick, but seeing the Germans unarmed they climbed out of their trenches and shook hands with the enemy soldiers. The men exchanged presents of cigarettes and plum puddings and sang carols and songs. There was even a documented case of soldiers from opposing sides playing a good-natured game of soccer.

Some soldiers used this short-lived ceasefire for a more somber task: the retrieval of the bodies of fellow combatants who had fallen within the no-man's land between the lines.

The so-called Christmas Truce of 1914 came only five months after the outbreak of war in Europe and was one of the last examples of the outdated notion of chivalry between enemies in warfare. It was never repeated—future attempts at holiday ceasefires were quashed by officers' threats of disciplinary action—but it served as heartening proof, however brief, that beneath the brutal clash of weapons, the soldiers' essential humanity endured.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

And someone else wanted his Santa picture on my Blog. My son, Wyatt

A Christmas song composed by my 2-year old son, Mark Winston

Santa! Santa!
Christmas Tree!
Bring a Present!
(sing however you want!)

Since when was Santa Mexican?

A Great Christmas Story about a Dad

"As a young boy, I sometimes traveled the country roads with my dad. He was a rural mail carrier in southwestern Michigan, and on Saturdays he would often ask me to go on the route with him. I loved it. Driving through the countryside was always an adventure. There were animals to see, people to visit, and freshly-baked chocolate-chip cookies if you knew where to stop, and Dad did. We made more stops than usual when I was on the route because I always got carsick, but stopping for me never seemed to bother Dad.

"In the spring, Dad delivered boxes full of baby chicks. Their continuous peeping could drive you crazy, but Dad loved it. When the peeping became too loud to bear, you could quiet them down by trilling your tongue and making the sounds of a hawk. When I was a boy it was fun to stick your fingers through one of the holes in the side of the cardboard boxes and let the baby birds peck on your finger. Such bravery!

"On Dad's final day of work on a beautiful summer day, it took him well into the evening to complete his rounds because at least one member of each family was waiting at their mailbox to thank him for his friendship and his years of service. 'Two hundred and nineteen mailboxes on my route,' he used to say, 'and a story at every one.' One lady had no mailbox, so Dad took the mail in to her every day because she was nearly blind. Once inside, he read her mail and helped her pay her bills. And every Thursday he read her the local newspaper.

"Mailboxes were sometimes used for things other than mail. One note left in a mailbox read, 'Nat, take these eggs to Marian; She's baking a cake and doesn't have any eggs, and don't stop to talk to Archie!' Mailboxes might be buried in the snow, or broken, or lying on the ground, but the mail was always delivered. On cold days Dad might find one of his customers waiting for him by the mailbox with a cup of hot chocolate. A young girl wrote letters but had no stamps, so she left a few buttons on the envelope in the mailbox; Dad paid for the stamps. One busy merchant used to leave large amounts of cash in his mailbox in a paper bag for Dad to take to the bank. On one occasion, the amount came to $32,000. It's hard to believe, but it's true.

"A dozen years ago, when I traveled back to my hometown on the sad occasion of Dad's death, the mailboxes along the way reminded me of some of his stories. I thought I knew them all, but that wasn't quite the case.

"As I drove through Marcellus, I noticed to aluminum lamp poles, one on each side of the street, reflecting the light of the late-afternoon summer sun. When my dad was around, those poles supported wooden boxes that were roughly four feet off the ground. One box was painted green, and the other was red, and each had a slot at the top with white lettering: SANTA CLAUS, NORTH POLE. For years children had dropped letters to Santa through those slots.

"I made a left turn at the corner and drove past the post office and across the railroad tracks to our house. Mom and I were sitting at the kitchen table when I heard footsteps on our porch. There, at the door, stood Frank Townsend, who had been Dad's postmaster and great friend for many years. So of course we all sat down at the table and began to tell stories.

"At one point Frank looked at me across the table with tears in his eyes. 'What are we going to do about the letters this Christmas?' he asked.

"The letters?"

"I guess you never knew."

"Knew what?"

"'Remember, when you were a kid and you used to put your letters to Santa in green and red boxes on Main Street? It was your dad that answered all those letters that the kids wrote every year.'

"I just sat there with tears in my eyes. It wasn't hard for me to imagine Dad sitting at the old oak table in our basement reading those letters and answering each one. I have since spoken with several of the people who received Christmas letters during their childhood, and they told me how amazed they were that Santa had know so much about their homes and families.

"For me, just knowing that story about my father was the gift of a lifetime."

My daughter Christina with new remote controlled dragonfly


Christmas Video of my son with his first bike!

Friday, December 21, 2007

what is libertarianism?

Broadly speaking, there are two types of libertarians: rights theorists and consequentialists.[1] Rights theorists (some of whom may be deontologists) assert that all persons are the absolute owners of their lives, and should be free to do whatever they wish with their persons or property, provided they allow others the same liberty. They maintain that the initiation of force by any person or government, against another person or their property—with force meaning the use of physical force, the threat of it, or the commission of fraud against someone—who has not initiated physical force, threat, or fraud, is a violation of that principle. They do not oppose force used in response to initiatory aggressions such as violence, threat of violence, fraud or trespassing.

Consequentialist libertarians do not have a moral prohibition against "initiation of force," but believe that allowing a very large scope of political and economic liberty results in the maximum well-being or efficiency for a society. They maintain that a limited government is necessary for the maximization of liberty and therefore advancement of these goals. This type of libertarianism is associated with Milton Friedman, Ludwig von Mises, Friedrich Hayek, and James M. Buchanan. Some writers who have been called libertarians have also been referred to as classical liberals, by others or themselves. Also, some use the phrase "the freedom philosophy" to refer to libertarianism, classical liberalism, or both.[2][3] For example, they may differ over abortion issues, and some support the U.S. led coalition's invasion of Iraq while some oppose it.[4] There is a distinction between a libertarian and a member of a Libertarian Party, the latter of which would be called a Libertarian with a capital "L", as not all libertarians agree with any particular libertarian organization's platform.

Libertarianism is most popular in the United States, where it is claimed to be the philosophy advocated by Thomas Jefferson and several of the Founding Fathers.[5] Libertarianism is often bundled with American conservatism, because many conservatives aim to retain the ideas of the Founders (although many conservatives are not comfortable with libertarianism).[6] Polls show that 10 to 20 percent of voting-age Americans have libertarian views.[7][8]

Wayne Allyn Root for president (Love his middle name)

I'm a very different kind of Presidential candidate. Not too many Presidential candidates have become new fathers during the campaign. My lovely wife Debra and I are expecting our new daughter Contessa Root in the next 48 hours. It's a new start on the second half of my life. And also a new Las Vegas record- 4 kids with the same wife! Becoming a father again often gets you thinking about your life. I got to thinking about that over the weekend. Just a few days ago, I appeared as a guest on Fox News Channel as a Libertarian Presidential candidate. I told the host that I am a unique Presidential candidate in that I am a son of a butcher and small businessman. The Fox host looked at me like I was nuts. I could see his mind working as we spoke- he was thinking, "a small businessman running for President? Fat chance."

But you see that's the whole problem with the political process. The media has a preconceived stereotype of who should be President. If you don't meet that stereotype- they write you off, disregard you, ignore you. Trust me- that will not be happening to this Presidential candidate. I'm lots of things- but ignored is definitely not one of them! The national news media has no idea what's about to hit them. The fun has just begun.

I believe that my life has been the perfect preparation for the Presidency. I am 46 years old with 3 young children, and Root baby number 4 due on Wednesday. It's a wonderful and exciting time in my life. Yet it's also a scary time. You see I'm just like any other American- worried about the future. Worried about bills. Worried about my big mortgage. Worried about paying for the home-school education of my 4 children. Worried about how I'm going to pay 4 college educations over the next 25 years. Worried about how I'm going to pay all the taxes- property taxes, sales taxes, income taxes, business taxes, payroll taxes for my employees. The worries are endless. And of course the biggest worry of all- what if a big government "soak-the-rich" liberal tax-raiser gets into office and raises my taxes?

I don't know where I'm getting the money to pay all the bills and taxes listed above- let alone even higher taxes. It's enough to keep me from sleeping at night. Four kids adds up to a lot of joy- and also a lot of bills and a lot of worries!

But what all this means is that I'm the first candidate to run for President who has all the same worries of a typical American voter and taxpayer. I am a small businessman. I run a company with 35
employees. Every week I have a large payroll to make. I am personally responsible for the payroll taxes of 35 people. I am responsible for the health insurance for 35 people. And of course, my biggest responsibility of all is to my wife and 4 children. It's a lot of responsibility.

I am proud to be a small businessman. I guess that makes me unqualified to be President- according to the national media and the political pundits. They laugh at small businesspersons. We're meaningless to them. We can't afford to hire lobbyists. We can't afford to contribute tens of thousands in political contributions to each and every politician. We don't control corrupt union pension funds. We don't employees thousands of people to go door-to-door to get out the vote. So to politicians and the national media we are meaningless, insignificant, and invisible.

Yet politicians, pundits, and the liberal media are missing the big picture. Today the epicenter of the 21st century American economy is SMALL BUSINESS. We now create the majority of the jobs. We pay billions in taxes. We are single-handedly responsible for making the U.S. economy grow. In just the last year, small business created 1.9 million net new jobs. There are today 26.8 million small businesses fueling the American economy. Just one category, female-owned small businesses, numbers 6.5 million businesses producing $940.8 billion in revenues. There are 1.1 million Asian-owned small businesses. There are 1.2 million African American-owned small businesses. There are 1.6 million Hispanic-owned small businesses. Small business now employs 51% of this nation's private, non-farm workforce. The days of big corporations and big unions dominating the American economy are over. But the national media hasn't figured that out yet. They are living in a time warp. Because big corporations are the ones with the lobbyists- they get all the attention from the media (and the D.C. politicians).

It's a new world out there- a world dominated by small business. Small business owners are the heroes of the business world. They are the "fly boys"- they take the big risks with their own money, on their own ideas, they are the CEO's of their own little worlds. Each small business has someone like me running the show. A guy or gal with 2 or 3 (or even gasp! 4) kids, big mortgages, big bills to pay, college educations to fund, nonstop taxes to pay. We need a President who understands small business and the unique problems, bills and taxes that each small business owner faces. Name someone running for President in the 2 major parties who understands these issues and problems? Who has any connection whatsoever to small business?

Our current President was born into wealth, power, and privilege. He had all the connections from his day of birth to lead a comfortable, effortless life. Eventually he became owner/General Partner of the Texas Rangers. That's the closest he got to small business- owning a major league baseball team with a $50 million dollar payroll.

How about those who want to be President 2008? On the GOP side, Mitt Romney was born into wealth and privilege- his father was Governor of Michigan and CEO of American Motors. He is George W. Bush all over again- a man born into big business from the moment of birth. Mitt Romney has never known a worry about money or bills in his life. John McCain is the son and grandson of powerful Admirals who ran the United States Navy. He is a Prince born to Kings. Rudy Guliani was a powerful prosecutor and mayor. The closest he ever came to business was putting businessmen in jail to build his name recognition. Only a few years after leaving office, Rudy is today worth close to $100 million dollars. Just another out- of-touch man of wealth and privilege- without a clue about small business. Only Mike Huckabee has common-man roots. But he also never ran a small business in his life, never created a job, never risked his own money to start a business. As a pastor, Huckabee never worried about taxes (churches don't pay them- no property taxes, no taxes on contributions). Huckabee went straight from pastor to career politician (who loves big government and the Nanny State).

On the Democrat side we have a really interesting group- wall to wall LAWYERS. Hillary Clinton is a lawyer who has spent her entire life holding government jobs and collecting government checks. And as far as understanding the common man, she was paid a reported $8 million advance for her biography. When Bill and Hillary left the White House they were broke. Today they are worth over $50 million. Government service has been very, very good to the Clintons. So much for "sacrifice for the good of the people."

Hillary has never risked her own money on a business, never created a job, never run any business of any kind. Ditto for my Columbia College '83 classmate Barack Obama. He went straight from law school, to public service, to a $2 million dollar book advance. Never created a job, never risked a dime, never ran a business of any kind. And then there's John Edwards- the man famous for $400 haircuts. Edwards is a lawyer who earned his $50 million fortune by suing people. He too never created a business or a job- worse, he destroyed businesses and jobs by suing them.

These are the Presidential frontrunners who the national media considers "qualified." No wonder our country is in such trouble. These are the people who have run our country into the ground- career politicians, career bureaucrats, career lawyers who destroy jobs through lawsuits, spoiled brats born into wealth. Not a one of them has ever created a job in their lives. Not one of them has a clue how to start a small business, run a small business, or pay the bills and taxes that come with such a responsibility. In a country and economy now dominated by small business, isn't it time for a change?

I am so proud of this great country. Anything is possible in America. I am not just a small businessman. I'm the son of a small businessman. My grandfather was a Russian immigrant at the turn of the century. He died penniless in the "poor ward" of a Brooklyn hospital- leaving 7 children and no income for my grandmother. My dad David Root shined shoes as a young boy to survive. He went onto become a butcher. Eventually he owned his own butcher store. It wasn't much- but it was his. He was the owner and boss. He had achieved his version of the American Dream. That blue-collar butcher with his little meat store put both his children through Ivy League college. My sister and I both graduated from Columbia University.

Today David Root's son is running for President of the United States. I love America. But we need to change our definition of who is "qualified" to be President of the United States. I believe the time is past due for a small businessperson in the White House. I'm certain that the liberal national media thinks a small businessman with 35 employees is unqualified to run the government of the United States of America. But I have news for them- I have no intention of running the government. I aim only to CUT GOVERNMENT.

For that job, a small businessman is perfect. I understand how to run a business on fewer dollars, on fewer employees. I understand how to cut bureaucracy and empower employees to take personal responsibility. I understand how to pay bills when funds are short. I understand how to "make do" without automatic annual increases in funding. I understand how damaging and deadly the combination of bureaucracy and high-taxation are to the creation of jobs and businesses.

The day that I take office, I plan to therefore start the process of handing power back to the people- where it belongs. I believe that government's job is not to run the country- it's to get out of the way of the individual. I believe that government belongs to the people, not the politicians. I believe that your money is your property- not the property of government, bureaucrats, IRS tax collectors, or politicians. I intend to downsize government. I intend to limit its power, size and scope. I intend to cut spending dramatically. I intend to lower your taxes dramatically. I intend to increase the rights and freedoms of the individual. It's time for a change in the way we think about government. It's time for a big change in how we define "qualified" for the job of President. I think a small businessman is just the person for the job.

Wayne Allyn Root is a Libertarian Presidential candidate. For more about Wayne and his bold stands on important political issues, go to:

The Night Before Christmas by Christopher Walken

‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house,
Not a creature was stirring, not even this mouse.
For I bit off its head, and shaved off its hair,
Stuck it in Timmy’s stocking, hung from the chimney with care.

The children asleep, waiting for Santa to come,
While visions of sugar…wait…what the fuck is a sugar plum?
Grandma in her ‘kerchief, Grandpa in his cap,
Had just settled down, for a long winter’s nap.

To say “just settled in” is a bit of a mistake,
Twelve years in those chairs, they won’t soon awake.
I think they’re fun, you can move them about,
I had just put Grandpa’s cold fist in his mouth.

When out in the yard, there arose such a clatter,
I looked onto the lawn to see only bone and grey matter,
The moon lit the moisture on the new-scattered flesh,
The blood yet to freeze, you could tell it was fresh.

Then, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But eight stupid little dogs … err … tiny reindeer,
Strapped to a driverless sleigh were these fawn,
And I knew Santa’s remains were all over my lawn.

He always was a bit jolly, a little bit high,
And what’s Christmas Eve without a DWI?
I took a seat in the sleigh, between seven large bags,
Peered over the front, and read off the dogs’ tags:

“Now, Dasher! Now Dancer! Now, Prancer and Vixen!”
What lonely sicko names their stupid dog Vixen?
“On, Comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!”
Your master is mangled, and surely we’ll miss him.

But Christmas goes on, with me at the reigns,
Sure beats hanging out here and cleaning up brains,
But the reindeer won’t budge, kinda makes you wonder,
If they know that I was in The goddam Deer Hunter.

“C’mon silly dogs! I know you recall,
how to dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
That got them started, and to the house-tops they flew,
With a sleigh full of toys, and the Angel of Death too.

So to all you naughty kids, don’t ever fear,
I’m running the show, and this might be your year,
You might hear me cackle, as I swoop down like a hawk and
Howl “Merry Chris-mas to all, from your pal Santa Walken!”

Note to the little ones: Do not worry about your fat friend. There are 17 confirmed immortals in the world. I am one of them. Santa is another. He will be back next year. Hopefully he’ll lay off the sauce.

Take the Sci fi sounds quiz I received 56 credits on
The Sci Fi Sounds Quiz

How much of a Sci-Fi geek are you?
Guess the Sci-Fi Movie Sounds hereCanon powershot

Evil Americans, Poor Mullahs

Article in German magazine Spiegel

The 7th Cavalry then and now, actually now and then.

Russel, I don't think the Cav will be as big of a pushover as they were in 1876. Be Careful.

More on the Lakota secession

Is no one taking this seriously? Well, the Rapid City Journal is.

Russell Means, who played Chincachgook in the Last of the Mohicans.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Lakota people secede from the United States

The nerve of these people, living on our land before we got here. LINK

Don't laugh until you read the article. These people mean it, and make sense.

Sometimes I think I'd be better off dead. No, wait, not me, you.

–Jack Handey

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

How I am going to choose my vote for president

OK, they're all pretty much the same. A bunch of noodle heads. None of them have any concrete plans for doing anything beyond the soundbite stage. So here's the challenge. I am going to keep a list of all the candidates, both democrat and Republican, and as they do something thoughtless, tasteless or just plain idiotic, they get crossed off the list. The one left over gets my vote! Double challenge, Hillary, Whatever Bill does counts for you!

Romney Calls for Employment Verification System that Already Exists
(an actual headline). So, Mitt, you're gone. Oh also for that remark about you tearing up when you saw flag draped caskets being brought home, imagining that they were one of your five sons. Not too much of a chance of that, seeing as none of them are in the military.

So, Mitt's gone, who's next?

This may actually be so entertaining that I may have to start a side-blog for it.

And I just did! Click here!

This is awesome, but not if he's your neighbor

Yes, this is a guy's real Christmas light setup. Luck for his neighbors, he broadcast the song on a low-powered FM transmitor you can pick up in your car.

And now, a Christmas classic

Important stuff happens in the World, here's the top story today

In a bid to out-skank her older sister, Jamie Lynn Spears gets knocked up. Mother's book on parenting "may be delayed".

It's not news, it's Fox

What I did to win the War today

  1. Went to work at 1330.
  2. Listened to the Battalion Commander tell us how to be safe over the holidays in a curious Army tradition known as the "safety brief".
  3. Wonder who the officer was that he mentioned who received a DUI this last weekend.
  4. Figured out who it was and wasn't surprised.
  5. Re-did my leave form as it was "lost"
  6. Went home and played Simpsons on my Xbox 360.
  7. Wondered where my head was when I agreed to an audiology appointment at 0945 on my first day of leave (hearing tests point to "significant hearing loss").

Evidence Fire or Book-burning? You decide. Either way it got out of control.

Fire Breaks out at Old executive Office Building

"And what else do we burn besides witches?"


The history of NORAD Tracking Santa.

Colorado Springs-based Sears store ran an advertisement encouraging children to call Santa Claus on a special telephone hotline. Due to a printing error, the phone number that was printed was the hotline for the Director of Operations at the Continental Air Defense (CONAD). Colonel Harry Shoup took the first Santa call on Christmas Eve of 1955 from a six-year old boy who began reciting his Christmas list. Shoup didn't find the call funny, but after asking the mother of the second caller what was happening, then realizing the mistake that occurred, he instructed his staff to give Santa's position to any child who called in[1].

Three years later, the governments of the United States and Canada combined their national domestic air defenses into the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), but the tradition continued. Now major media outlets as well as children call in to inquire on Santa's location. NORAD relies on volunteers to help make Santa tracking possible. Many employees at Cheyenne Mountain and Peterson Air Force Base spend part of their Christmas Eve with their families and friends at NORAD's Santa Tracking Operations Center in order to answer phones and provide Santa updates to thousands of callers[2]. About 800 service members and their families volunteer, and shift run from 2 a.m. MST December 24 to 2 a.m. Christmas morning. [3]

In 1997, Canadian Major Jamie Robertson took over the program and expanded it to the Web where corporation-donated services have given the tradition global accessibility[4]. In 2004, NORAD received more than 35,000 e-mails, 55,000 calls and 912 million hits on the Santa-tracking website from 181 countries. In 2005, more than 500 volunteers answered questions[5]. The site now gets well over 1 billion hits.

The fictional background storyline has changed with the world political situation: during the Cold War when the tracking team provided updates via radio announcements, only North America was mentioned and Santa's approach was described in tense terms with interceptor aircraft scrambled to shoot down the "bogie."[6][7] Only at the last minute would the pilot realize who he was engaging[8]. Now the Web shows that as Santa approaches Newfoundland, a flight of Canadian Air Force fighters (CF-18 Hornets as of 2006) rendezvouses with him to provide an honor guard and ensure that he has no difficulty with the various Air Defense Identification Zones (ADIZ) he must enter[9].

In 2006, NORAD Tracks Santa began using Microsoft Virtual Earth-style maps that instantly provide Santa's current location.

In 2007, NORAD Tracks Santa will begin using Google Earth to track Santa Claus in 3-D. They will also instantly provide Santa's location.


NORAD tracking Santa website

As many of you may know, every Christmas Eve the North American Air Defense Command tracks Santa on his journey around the world. At their website now are some fun Christmas activities for children to check out. I hope they are still watching for inbound missiles!


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

MP3 Christmas Music, recorded from old wax cylinder records.

Some of these recordings date from 1904 and still sound amazingly good! An interesting playlist for Christmas Eve!

The phonograph was conceived by Thomas Edison on 18 July 1877 for recording telephone messages, his first test using waxed paper. In early production versions the recordings were done on the outside surface of a strip of tinfoil wrapped around a rotating metal cylinder. By the 1880s wax cylinders were mass marketed. These had sound recordings in the grooves on the outside of hollow cylinders of slightly soft wax. These cylinders could easily be removed and replaced on the mandrel of the machine which played them. Early cylinder records would commonly wear out after they were played a few dozen times. The buyer could then either bring the worn cylinders back to the dealer to be traded in as partial credit for purchase of new recordings, or have their surface shaved smooth so new recordings could be made on them. In 1890 Charles Tainter patented the use of hard carnauba wax as a replacement for the common mixture of paraffin and beeswax used on phonograph cylinders.

Early cylinder machines of the late 1880s and the 1890s were often sold with recording attachments. The ability to record as well as play back sound was an advantage to cylinder phonographs over the competition from cheaper disc record phonographs which began to be mass marketed at the end of the 1890s, as the disc system machines could be used only to play back pre-recorded sound.

In the earliest stages of phonograph manufacturing various competing incompatible types of cylinder recordings were made. A standard system was decided upon by Edison Records, Columbia Phonograph, and other companies in the late 1880s. The standard cylinders were about 4 inches (10 cm) long, 2¼ inches in diameter, and played about two minutes of music or other sound. -FROM WIKIPEDIA

Check out my Brother's site

Here's a plug for you bro! Link also under my favorite sites on the right side

My brother's website, "The great Commission". He's a Hornet Pilot with the US Navy.

Do you ever have a dream where you're on top of a pyramid in kind of sun god robes while a thousand naked women throw tiny pickles at you?

Sequel to Real Genius planned. Val Kilmer "interested" (needs the work?).

This could be the best or worst movie ever filmed.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Rodolfo P. Hernandez

I have met this man and shook his hand.

Cpl. Hernandez, a member of Company G, distinguished himself by conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity above and beyond the call of duty in action against the enemy.

His platoon, in defensive positions on Hill 420, came under ruthless attack by a numerically superior and fanatical hostile force, accompanied by heavy artillery, mortar, and machinegun fire which inflicted numerous casualties on the platoon.

His comrades were forced to withdraw due to lack of ammunition but Cpl. Hernandez, although wounded in an exchange of grenades, continued to deliver deadly fire into the ranks of the onrushing assailants until a ruptured cartridge rendered his rifle inoperative.

Immediately leaving his position, Cpl. Hernandez rushed the enemy armed only with rifle and bayonet.

Fearlessly engaging the foe, he killed 6 of the enemy before falling unconscious from grenade, bayonet, and bullet wounds but his heroic action momentarily halted the enemy advance and enabled his unit to counterattack and retake the lost ground.

The indomitable fighting spirit, outstanding courage, and tenacious devotion to duty clearly demonstrated by Cpl. Hernandez reflect the highest credit upon himself, the infantry, and the U.S. Army.

all this, however, was a feint for the main airborne landing from the north of a battalion of soldiers of Task Force Fury from the 82nd Airborne.

Afghanistan's government flag was raised Wednesday on what had been one of the biggest strongholds of the Taliban and al Qaeda in Afghanistan and a leading world center of heroin production.

This article is boring until the wiccans start throwing hexes


Man From Earth (more about)

I just talked to my Dad and he has recently viewed the movie on my recommendation, and loved it! He only had one negative to mention and it was negligible. Go watch this movie. It's still on the shelves at Walmart (I saw it there today) and you can order or rent it from the other places I mentioned earlier. Eric (Wilkinson, the producer) if you read this shoot me your email address if you want, I love movies and talking to someone who has made one is awesome!

Rules for dating a Drill Sergeant's Daughter

Rule One:
If you pull into my driveway and honk you'd better be delivering a package, because you're sure not picking anything up.

Rule Two:
You do not touch my daughter in front of me. You may glance at her, so long as you do not peer at anything below her neck. If you cannot keep your eyes or hands off of my daughter's body, I will remove them.

Rule Three:
I am aware that it is considered fashionable for boys of your age to wear their trousers so loosely that they appear to be falling off their hips. Please don't take this as an insult, but you and all of your friends are complete idiots. Still, I want to be fair and open minded about this issue, so I propose his compromise: You may come to the door with your underwear showing and your pants ten sizes too big, and I will not object. However, in order to ensure that your clothes do not, in fact, come off during the course of your date with my daughter, I will take my electric nail gun and fasten your trousers securely in place to your waist.

Rule Four:
I'm sure you've been told that in today's world, sex without utilizing a "barrier method" of some kind can kill you. Let me elaborate, when it comes to sex, I am the barrier, and I will kill you.

Rule Five:
It is usually understood that in order for us to get to know each other, we should talk about sports, politics, and other issues of the day. Please do not do this. The only information I require from you is an indication of when you expect to have my daughter safely back at my house, and the only word I need from you on this subject is "early."

Rule Six:
I have no doubt you are a popular fellow, with many opportunities to date other girls. This is fine with me as long as it is okay with my daughter. Otherwise, once you have gone out with my little girl, you will continue to date no one but her until she is finished with you. If you make her cry, I will make you cry.

Rule Seven:
As you stand in my front hallway, waiting for my daughter to appear, and more than an hour goes by, do not sigh and fidget. If you want to be on time for the movie, you should not be dating. My daughter is putting on her makeup, a process that can take longer than painting the Golden Gate Bridge. Instead of just standing there, why don't you do something useful, like changing the oil in my car?

Rule Eight:
The following places are not appropriate for a date with my daughter: Places where there are beds, sofas, or anything softer than a wooden stool. Places where there are no parents, policemen, or nuns within eyesight. Places where there is darkness. Places where there is dancing, holding hands, or happiness. Places where the ambient temperature is warm enough to induce my daughter to wear shorts, tank tops, midriff T-shirts, or anything other than overalls, a sweater, and a goose down parka - zipped up to her throat. Movies with a strong romantic or sexual theme are to be avoided; movies which features chain saws are okay. Hockey games are okay. Old folks homes are better.

Rule Nine:
Do not lie to me. On issues relating to my daughter, I am the all-knowing, merciless god of your universe. If I ask you where you are going and with whom, you have one chance to tell me the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. I have a shotgun, a shovel, and five acres behind the house. Do not trifle with me.

Rule Ten:
Be afraid. Be very afraid. It takes very little for me to mistake the sound of your car in the driveway for a chopper coming in over a rice paddy near Hanoi. When my Agent Orange starts acting up, the voices in my head frequently tell me to clean the guns as I wait for you to bring my daughter home. As soon as you pull into the driveway you should exit your car with both hands in plain sight. Speak the perimeter password, announce in a clear voice that you have brought my daughter home safely and early, then return to your car - there is no need for you to come inside. The camouflaged face at the window is mine.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Oops, sorry about your cities, my bad.

20 Mishaps That Might Have Started Accidental Nuclear War

War hero offers words of encouragement

Decorated WWII vet shares his story with troops bound for Iraq

The old soldier, so tall and straight that even his shock of white hair seemed to stand at attention, greeted each war-weary veteran and every apprehensive recruit with a firm handshake and his heartfelt thanks for their service and sacrifice.

James Megellas, a Medal of Honor nominee, gave copies of his wartime memoirs to troops Wednesday at D/FW Airport.

Set up Wednesday at a small table outside the USO office at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, 91-year-old James Megellas handed out copies of his wartime memoirs, All the Way to Berlin, to departing soldiers, jotting a personal note to each one.

Today, the Colleyville resident will depart for the war zone himself, stopping at U.S. bases across Europe before joining the troops for Christmas dinner in Afghanistan.

"To me, this has great meaning – to meet the soldiers and talk with them," said Mr. Megellas, an honest-to-goodness war hero who has been recommended for a Medal of Honor.

"There are certain things that bind us and transcend the generations," said the most decorated officer in the history of the 82nd Airborne.

Even the freshest soldiers could feel it.

Pvt. Andrew Ramos, a native of Wichita Falls headed for Iraq, walked away in awe from his brief chat with Mr. Megellas.

"When you see a lieutenant who did what he did, you just about bow down to him," he said.

Like Pvt. Ramos, many who passed Mr. Megellas' way were heading to their first overseas assignment, and he asked how they were doing and quietly reassured them. With those on their second or third tour, he listened to their stories and shared a bit of his own.

What a story it is.

He took his diploma from Ripon College, near his Wisconsin hometown, in May 1942, then accepted his commission as a second lieutenant in the Army.

With the attack on Pearl Harbor still a fresh wound, Lt. Megellas was itching to see action. But the Army had other plans.

"The war had started and here I was messing around in signal school, so I volunteered for the paratroopers because they said they'd put me into combat," he said.

A year later, he was scrambling through the mountains of Italy with the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne, fighting in the invasion at Anzio and completing 100 days of combat without a break.

Soon he was parachuting into Holland, part of the largest airborne invasion in history.

His unit battled to Nijmegen, an ancient town with two long bridges crossing the Waal River that had to be captured intact. German troops repelled the initial attacks, and finally, the 504th launched an assault that no one expected to succeed, Mr. Megellas said.

"We made a daylight crossing of the river in canvas boats," he said. "None of us honestly thought we would make it across alive. But it was our job and no one questioned it."

That day, Lt. Megellas crawled alone to a German observation post, killing two guards and the crew of a machine gun nest. His unit joined the attack, and Lt. Megellas captured three Germans and killed two more.

For his heroic action, he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.

By December 1944, the Allies were squeezing German forces from the east and west, when Adolf Hitler launched a last-ditch counteroffensive.

The Allies would call it the Battle of the Bulge. The 504th joined that fight in the final, desperate days and took positions outside the Belgian town of Herresbach.

Lt. Megellas and a buddy were ordered to take two platoons into the town.

"While we were attacking, a tank came out and began firing and the men took cover," he said. "Instinctively, I charged the tank and managed to get close enough to it and hit it with a concussion grenade that immobilized it. Then I dropped a hand grenade in on the crew."

Lt. Megellas was awarded the Silver Star for his valor in that battle.

Over the years, various people had recommended Lt. Megellas for the Medal of Honor. Finally, last year, a Wisconsin congressman introduced a bill to award him the medal.

To the current generation of soldiers who read just a bit of his story Wednesday at D/FW Airport, Mr. Megellas served as an inspiration.

"I'm really looking forward to reading his book," said Sgt. Kevin Anderson of Oklahoma City, on his way back to Iraq. "He reminds me of my grandfather, a great man."

And Lt. Col. Blake Settle, a member of the Kentucky National Guard who has served two years in Afghanistan and is now in the midst of his first year in Iraq, called Mr. Megellas "a great American."

For his part, the old soldier did his best to cheer these soldiers on their way back to the war.

"I have to tell you you're doing a hell of a job for us," he told one young man headed for his second tour in Iraq.


Top US Officials in Iraq Condemn Car Bombings in Amarah

Not "strongly condemn"? Must condemn car bombings, or the people will think we support the nutjob martyrs?
If you create scenes like this, you get a special place in heaven.

Santa Claus caught on super 8 camera in 1973

If you pause at 26-27 seconds you get a glimpse of his face before he disappears in a ball of light

There are plenty of airplanes in the water, but no submarines in the sky

Blue angel at fleet week. SanFransisco. According to the photographer, he was going just under the speed of sound. Less than 20 feet off the water. Anyone got video of this?

Army pays $725 to WWII vet for unfair trial, imprisonment


And some more FinnTroll

And just for the fun of it, some FinnTroll

For those of you who like Finnish bands screaming in Swedish.

Army platoon says "the hell with this, we're not going out"

Continuing story on Army platoon in Adhamiya.

I got no problem leaving tomorrow

Iraq rejects permanent U.S. bases: adviser

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Police Officer shooting

We had to watch this video on the first day of ROE/RUF training. In case the video is kind of blurry (it is from a dash cam), the officer stopped this individual, let him go back to his truck and retrieve a semi-automatic rifle from the cab. While the individual was loading the rifle right in front of him, the cop just yelled at him until the suspect began to engage. The police officer had been reprimanded, apparently, for being too heavy handed with subjects. At one point during the fight you can see the subject literally brushing off the hits from the handgun. Not a fun video to watch.

Millionare Funding Search for Bigfoot near Lake Tahoe

No, it's not that Branson guy. He funds enough weird stuff already.

Wish I could find an article by a real wildlife bioligist explaining how much land it would require to support a viable population of a seven to eight foot, 800-1200 pound primate. Any of my six readers care to respond? Jane Goodall believes they exist, but she lived with gorillas by choice. This animal would have to be much smarter and craftier than the Gorillas in Africa, which keeps getting wiped out by illiterate Africans by the busload (even though some seem to be fighting back against humans, see previous post).

Video below is the famous Patterson/Gimlin footage from the 60's. Still from the video upper left.

Mayor Daley's son and grandson in Afghanistan with the 82d Airborne (you sort that one out)

Article here

More on the battle at Musa Qala


World's Most Endangered Gorilla Fights Back

Family group found near a large, dark grey slab of mysterious material in a rectangular shape 1 foot by 3 feet by 9 feet. Slab of material emitting strange, low pitched hum. One scientist beaten by ape using large bone as a weapon.

Trenches, mines and snipers greet UK troops in Taleban's fortress town

Major Battle ongoing in Afghanistan to retake town from Taliban ongoing