Daily Archives: June 6, 2007

Book review: The Last Season, by Eric Blehm

This book came out a year ago, and is now in paperback. It is the true story of the disappearance of a National Park Ranger in the Sierra Mountains of California. Eric Blehm researched this book thoroughly and blends the life story of Ranger Randy Morgenson with descriptions of the search (inside and outside the park) that ensued after he went missing. The story takes a number of twists and turns, and is suspenseful and very well written. It won a National Outdoor Book award. My only criticism concerns the deficiency of certain kinds of photographs and maps that would have made the book even better.

I highly recommend this book.

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Filed under books, global warming/environment, Outdoors

Rove, Sampson, Schlozman….what is it with these tubby little guys?

When I saw Bradley Scholzman testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee I just got a little weirded out. Shave Scholzman’s facial hair and you couldn’t tell him apart from Rove and Sampson…were they all high school outcasts who swore revenge on the world?

He bag production, He got wal-rus gumboot

Dm
He got O-no sideboard, He one spinal cracker

A7
He got feet down below his knee

G7
Hold you in his armchair, you can feel his disease

Did they all come together with their Snow White, Monica Goodling, in a lovefest of dirty tricks, lawbreaking, smears, threats, “opposition research,” and unchecked power over the Department of Justice?

Inquiring minds want to know.

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Filed under Alberto Gonzales:boob or simpleton-you decide, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, US Attorneys, voter intimidation

The Shield: the Mope Opera continues next season

As we leave Vic and Shane until next season, the two are pretty much in a dead heat for who can have the most impossibly dangerous complicated fucked up lives. Right now, Shane is in the lead, because unlike Vic, Shane gets up in the morning, stretches, and thinks, “I’m gonna go right out and do something illegal, immoral, and unethical, that will get a whole gang of people pissed off at me. Because I’m a cop, and I’m entitled to. “

Whereas Vic doesn’t do that kind of stuff unless it seems like the best way out of the current scrape he’s in.

Back in the day, who would have ever thought a show would come along that would make NYPD Blue look like Sesame Street? The Shield isn’t stacked with hotties, but everybody is on the make, and Vic is Andy Sipowitz on crack.

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film review: Knocked Up=Jacked Up

Full disclosure: I would never go to anything this bad, so I have to review it based on what I read from others whom I respect who did see it, God bless ‘em (they prefer to remain anonymous). I do have standards, you know.

If you’ve already gone to this movie, you can be forgiven. But from this moment on, there will be no redemption…that wasted 2 hours and 9 bucks can never be reclaimed, nor can your immortal soul.

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Filed under entertainment, Movies

Appeals court:Bush’s, Cheney’s foul language prevents enforcement of TV obscenity rules

tsk, tsk, what about their fucking family values?

If President Bush and Vice President Cheney can blurt out vulgar language, then the government cannot punish broadcast television stations for broadcasting the same words in similarly fleeting contexts.

That, in essence, was the decision on Monday, when a federal appeals panel struck down the government policy that allows stations and networks to be fined if they broadcast shows containing obscene language.

Fuck me, I can hardly fucking wait to hear what fucking James fucking Dobson has to fucking say about this fucking development.

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Filed under blogging, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, entertainment, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, media, Politics, religion

Oh, but look at all that she’s accomplished….

link

The report from the Foreign Affairs Council, which includes retired ambassadors and senior diplomats, also said morale is dropping among diplomats.

The council found a severe staff shortage and holds Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice partly responsible. The State Department needs 1,100 more employees, especially since recent staff additions have gone to fill jobs in Iraq, Afghanistan and other difficult posts, the report said.

“In the first two years of Secretary Rice’s stewardship almost no net new resources have been realized,” the report said. It noted that Congress has twice denied money for Rice’s plan to rearrange diplomatic postings away from the Cold War model, which was heavy on jobs in Europe, and toward modern challenges in places like China and India.

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Filed under Bill Kristol: is he smarter than you?, Condoleezza Rice: tell me again, what is her job?, Dick Cheney: Hannibal Lector in disguise?, George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Middle East, Politics

Consumer Product Safety Commission still non-functional: meanwhile, kids are dying on ATVs

The government yesterday warned that children could be injured or killed because of major defects in an all-terrain vehicle produced in China.

One of George W. Bush’s many gifts to business, at the expense of the public, has been the disabling of the Consumer Product Safety Commission. People may be dying as a result.

714,500 Americans sustained injuries while riding ATVs between 2000 and 2005.

Another source:

At least 18 people — five of them children — died in crashes involving all-terrain vehicles over the Memorial Day [2007] weekend, and federal safety officials expect more deaths in coming months….

So far, the commission knows of 467 ATV-related deaths in 2005. Wolfson said commission staff members believe that number is much higher, closer to 700.

Nearly 137,000 people went to the hospital in 2005 for injuries involving ATVs, according to the commission. About a third of the injured were children.

The Wall Street Journal and other sources are carrying the story of a Chinese -made All-Terrain Vehicle which is defective and unsafe, and is being marketed for kids,

The Kazuma Meerkat 50 Youth All-Terrain Vehicle, imported by Kazuma Pacific Inc., of Stafford, Texas, has no front brakes, no parking brake and is missing a neutral indicator light.

Thousands of these things have been sold. The CPSC has asked the importer to voluntarily cooperate, but has met with a stonewall:

The commission said Kazuma Pacific refused to provide complete incident or injury information for any of its products, so the CPSC could not figure out how many children may have been injured.
Between December and May, the company “impeded CPSC’s efforts to protect the safety of children” by refusing to implement a plan to fix the ATV’s defects.
The company did not return telephone or e-mail requests for comment yesterday.
It has sold at least 2,700 Meerkat 50 ATVs and has said it will continue to do so.
Kazuma dealers and Web retailers nationwide have sold the vehicle since 2003 for $525 to $825.

Yet there seems to be nothing that can be done officially to ban it, because the Consumer Product Safety Commission continues to have a critical vacancy.

…ex-Chairman Hal Stratton, another Bush appointee, bolted the job with little warning on July 15 to join a law firm.

Bush waited so long to fill the post that the two remaining commissioners lost all regulatory powers on January 15.

In the CPSC’s 35-year history, only four times has it ever gone more than six months with only two commissioners. Three of those times were under the current administration.

On March 7, with a Democratic Congress in control, Bush made a bizarre nomination of a man who has made a career out of fighting consumer protection and workplace safety, a man Bush knew would never be confirmed:

[Michael] Baroody’s nomination has enraged consumer advocates and is expected to raise a fight in the Senate Commerce Committee where Bush’s nomination must be approved.

Baroody is the executive vice president of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). NAM is one of the nation’s largest trade groups and it opposes aggressive product safety regulation.

Ann Brown, the CPSC’s chairman from 1994-2001, laughed in shock when ConsumerAffairs.Com informed her in an interview that Bush was expected to nominate a NAM executive.

Predictably, Baroody was not confirmed. Now, Bush can claim that the vacancy is the fault of the Democrats. Meanwhile, the number of fatalities from ATVs is climbing; though numbers are incomplete, deaths have approximately doubled since Bush took office.

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Filed under George W. Bush: is he really THAT bad?, Karl Rove:Bush's brain or Bush's as'hole?, Outdoors, Politics, Texas