Friday, February 24, 2006

I look forward to their screaming...

We said this should happen -- whoo-hoo!

IRS Finds Charities Overstep Into Politics

WASHINGTON - IRS exams found nearly 3 out of 4 churches, charities and other civic groups suspected of having violated restraints on political activity in the 2004 election actually did so, the agency said Friday.

Most of the examinations that have concluded found only a single, isolated incidence of prohibited campaign activity.

In three cases, however, the IRS uncovered violations egregious enough to recommend revoking the groups' tax-exempt status.

"While the vast majority of charities, including churches, did not engage in politicking, our examinations substantiated a disturbing amount of political intervention in the 2004 electoral cycle," IRS Commissioner Mark Everson said in a statement.

emphasis mine.

I think I need to go home, get drunk, and screw, I feel so good! I look forward to their screaming...

Thursday, February 23, 2006

A step in the right direction...

Wal-Mart to open more in-store health clinics

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE:WMT - news), which has been facing fierce criticism over employee benefits, said on Thursday it will open more than 50 in-store health clinics this year and make further changes to workers' health-care plans.

Run by third parties, the clinics are open to shoppers and employees, and are staffed by doctors who can treat non-emergency illnesses such as strep throat. Costs average between $45 and $50 per visit, Wal-Mart spokeswoman Mona Williams said.

No-one's expecting them to provide full-service health care (we ARE talking about Wal-Mart) - but going some way to absorb their own health care costs is a step in the right direction.

Global economy question...

OK -- Slate explains what a port operator does, here.

What it does not explain, of course, is how it is logical for a foreign-controlled company to do the job (on any basis other than cost, of course).

BTW -- Levi Strauss & Co. no longer does any manufacturing of their own products in the US -- are they an American company?

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Guess it's time I came out...

Steve Gilliard, today:

This is how: if I don't leave the house before 1 PM on a Sunday, I can't get newspaper. When I rode the train daily, it was the blacks and latinos reading the Daily News or Post. Did the person who posted that actually deign to talk to a negro?

The problem is that the same people who think the Nation is a bastion of progressive thought with a pausity of non-white staff, tend to have the loudest voices.

The fact that women-run blogs have been expanding, that we have no idea who blogs or how many of those people happen to be black also never seems to come up.

Black people will use blogs like everyone else. We don't need to be escorted in by patronizing white people.

I mean, how many times do you go to any social function and 90 percent of the people are white? Happens to me a lot.

Stop talking to and about black people like they are children. That would be a first start.

What he said.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Port deal

I was on my way here to comment when suddenly Atrios said it best:

It isn't a "company from the Middle East." It's a company controlled by a foreign government.

I'm not a hawk, I'm an arch-liberal, but these are our shores, our borders, OUR PORTS - this has got to be stopped.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Vichy Democrats
Vichy Democrats -- Patriotic Democrats, Doggedly Resisting the Vichys, DINOs, Triangulators and Accommodationists. Starting with Joe Lieberman, of course.

Thersites2 says it all so much better than me.

"...Bah, sidewalks are for communists!"

Tena : And what is wrong with the Robin Hood law, anyway? Have we succumbed to the whining the rich, white school districts have been doing ever since it was implemented?

Southern and GOP rascism and exclusionism, of course -- the rich districts simply will not help finance the poor ones, not for any reason whatsoever. It's simply amazing that the school systems haven't failed in the last two decades.

I am sure that it was someone here [Eschaton] a couple of years ago, who said sarcastically, re:Texas -- "Bah, sidewalks are for communists!"

This came as a blinding revelation to me. I was raised in NYC -- public works are part of the fabric of things - not always to the good, but ongoing, constant.

Collectively, Texans do not support public works. Hate them, hate them with a passion, like they hate the idea of a state income tax to pay for what little infrastructure as exists here.

Hence the contempt for the Robin Hood law. The state pay for educational standards statewide? Why, we can BARELY manage contribute to our local school district (through property taxes)!

Friday, February 10, 2006



What a cool word. I'm just re-reading The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, which is just chock-full of cool Victoriana bent to the service of Steampunk.

So why didn't the Difference Engine ever work?

Out of touch with the funny

When good comedians go bad
Remember when Steve Martin, Albert Brooks and Woody Allen were funny? What on earth happened to our favorite funnymen?
By Stephanie Zacharek [2006-02-10]

This has been one of my ongoing peeves with comedians-made-big: they cease to be funny the moment that they're co-opted into the machine.

Eddie Murphy? Not funny since Raw.

Chris Rock? Increasingly nonfunny, and now he has a TV series (that he literally gets to phone in).

Steve Martin? Denis Leary? Ray Romano? Kevin James? Brett Butler? Roseanne? The list goes on.

They all have one thing in common: the moment that they hit it big they stopped performing in front of live audiences.

Not one of them has had to adapt his act for changing times and changing tastes from the moment that they acheived "success". Thus they cease to be relevant and daring and risky and breathtaking, and dammit, funny.

Get back on the road for a few months out of every few years, guys. Remember the funny, then bring it back to your movies and TV shows. Stop coasting.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Well, THIS is going to end badly...

Iranian Paper Plans Holocaust Cartoons

By NASSER KARIMI, Associated Press Writer

A prominent Iranian newspaper said Tuesday it would hold a competition for cartoons on the Holocaust to test whether the West extends the principle of freedom of expression to the Nazi genocide as it did to the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.

Hamshahri, one of Iran's largest papers, made clear the contest is a reaction to European newspapers' publication of Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, which have led to demonstrations, boycotts and attacks on European embassies across the Islamic world. Several people have been killed.


I seem to be generating a massive amount of crap for my ongoing disparagement of the Democrats.

I don't understand why.

No, that's bullshit, I DO understand, I just don't care.

The Alito Cloture Vote

How do HALF of the Democrats vote to end the debate? Simple -- they're pissed off that they don't get to run things like the Thugs, and they figure sucking up is better.