Trickle Down Economics?

Census Economic Briefing RoomsHmm. Household income stagnat in real dollars, poverty up, uninsured Americans, up, homeownership down a percent, yeah, sounds about time to take a vacation. If my fellow Americans do not put this Administration and those that have supported it on a very long vacation starting next year, I’m gonna start pricing guns and land in Montana…anyone else in?

Where’s George?

Potentially one of the worst natural disasters in the last 25 years, a breakdown in the Iraqi constitution, soaring crude oil prices, and where’s George? Hunkering down in Mississippi? No. Meeting with experts on alternative energy? NO. Bringing together representatives of the Sunni and Shiite factions to work out a compromise? Hell no. He’s sitting with a bunch of retirees in Sun City stroking them about the advantages of privatized Social Security. Oh, sure, you say, “he did tell the folks in Lousiana and Mississippi that the country would pray for them. You know, on second thought, go back to Crawford George, and take the rest of the year off.

Reality Check

One Foot in the GraveThis shit has just got to stop.

*EDIT Just to be clear, the link is to a soldier in Iraq who passed away a couple of weeks ago. You can read his last entry, and then in the comments, see the news. I highly suggest reading more of entries, and look at his bio page. That’s why I said this shit has just got to stop.

So with the ever growing trend in cable news to simply discuss missing boyfriends of washed up pop stars, and missing 18 year olds, I’ve found myself looking for something else to have on in the background. Enter or as the info on the cable says, google current. We all heard about it, Al Gore, blah blah, insert created Internet joke here. But it’s not bad. Most of what I’ve seen is “viewer created” shorts. Nothing has been “bad”, and some of it has been poignant. Certainly beats Fox News, or should I say, “Jennifer Holloway, 24/7”. What was Jon Stewart saying the other night, 14 Americans died in Iraq, and Fox still ran Van Sustren and the Holloway story.
Right now they are showing the top 10 Clicked News Stories, and how ironic, the #1 story was “Newton’s Partner seen alive”…

Netflix for your Playstation

Ok, so we use Netflix, and it’s great. Even if I don’t watch a film for 2 weeks, it’s there, and I don’t feel too guilty for only watching 3-4 films in a month, it still only costs the $18, roughly. Anyway, just saw a commercial for Game Fly, a Netflix clone for video games. 2 games at a time for $21.95. Certainly would beat dropping $50 to find out a game flat out sucks, and try and dump it on ebay for $30, to try and recoup your lost. Will let you know how it works.

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When Things Are Going Good…

When things are going good, they are really good. I can’t say a bad thing about my life right now, looking forward to my classes, have a great paying job lined up that starts in a month, doing some cool stuff on the web, just over all good. So my printer went out. An Epson 5400 all-in-one. Bought it about 16 months ago for $130 after rebates. But we bought the 2 year warranty. So, I go to trade it in today, and obviously the 5400 is an older model. They’ve got the 6600. Ok, they credit me the $150, the 6600 is $189 after instant rebate. Eh, $39 isn’t bad. But wait. There are some mail in rebates. How much you ask. $110 worth!!! So, I pay $80 out of my pocket today, will get $110 back within 6 weeks, have a brand new printer, and a 2 year no questions asked warranty. Sweet!
Even without the trade in deal, you can get that printer for $79 through the 26th of August at CompUSA. Still not a bad deal.

Kudos to Costas

Bob Costas Says No to Hour on Aruba – New York Times A sad story sure, but women of all ages and ethnic backgrounds go missing all over the world, and do not receive one minute of news coverage. I certainly wonder if all the advertising $$ that the cable news networks have taken in during segments on the Holloway case were applied to missing and exploited womens groups, what the effect would be.
That said, Costas, whom I’ve mentioned in a previous post as a solid fill in for King, turned down the gig based on the subject. Clearly Costas wants to do “real” stories, I’m sure he gets enough fluff doing “feel good” stories for the Olympics. Anyway, good for you Bob.

When In Doubt, Lie

So I caught part of the President’s speech today at the VFW conference today, and as the pressure is mounting on both sides of the aisle (that was Republican Chuck Hagel, Vietnam Vet, saying that Iraq was looking more and more like Vietnam, right?), and what did I hear him invoke? Ah, the old September 11th mantra. Is he foolish enough to think that people are still buying that, or am I foolish enough to think people have seen through the smoke screen and realize that Iraq has nothing to do Sept 11. Either way, with all the bickering and jostling for election positions, the GOP sure isn’t sending a united message, and the Dems are still figuring out how Dean got elected to head the party. Meanwhile, I feel we are on a ship at 1/2 throttle with the wheel tied off so we just keep going in a big circle. Every once in a while, we see land, and think we are going to be ok, only to veer away, back to sea. Please, can we find someone, anyone, to stand up and take the wheel?

Farewell Gonzo

From the Washington Post
A farewell bang is set this evening for Hunter S Thompson’s remains.

Hope it’s a blast. To have friends like that, he had to have been everything we think him to be. I even forgive him for his pathetic bashing of the Bucs before the Superbowl. But what better team than the Raiders, the perennial bad boys, for Thompson to be a fan of.

No man is so foolish but he may sometimes give another good counsel, and no man so wise that he may not easily err if he takes no other counsel than his own. He that is taught only by himself has a fool for a master.

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More Bush vs the Environment

Howl of the Wolf May be Heard Again in Northern Forest – National Wildlife FederationIn an attempt to once again circumvent the law, the Bush administration attempted to lump several subspecies of the Grey Wolf together to so as to take the NE Grey Wolf off the endangered list. Luckily, a judge didn’t see it that way, and ruled that there was no evidence that the research from several years ago was reversed.
In a related note, a similar case was ruled on on the West Coast regarding a species of salamander, in which the administration tried to lump several species together so as to remove them from the endangered species list.
One can only assimilate that the reason to remove these species is so development can infringe on the habitat of these endangered species. I’d like to know a little more about what kind of development that would be.

As if I Didn’t Have Enough To Do

So I have this personal blog, my cooking blog, school starting, and going back to work full time in a kitchen a couple months from now, I’ve started another blog, this one specific to the WordPress community. Plugin announcments, new themes, WP news in general. It came about as I’m working with some developers who are beginning a hosting company, with some added features.
Continue reading “As if I Didn’t Have Enough To Do”

The Situation Room

What in the world is this really? Is CNN trying to steal Al Gore’s cable network ideas? All the monitors, Wolf wandering around like he’s at mission control. It’s not real, is it? And now they’ve moved the blogger babes out from the little desk with the laptops and 23in monitors, to their own set with GIANT monitors, and now they’re standing too. I kinda liked the fact that they seemed they were in a back room surfing on their laptops. Now, it’s just so, blah.

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“Blank” WordPress Theme

I’m offering up an updated, beta version here.

So, as I’ve begun designing WordPress themes, I found the tutorial over at Urban Giraffe invaluable. They walk you through the dissection of the default Kubrick theme, how to strip it down to bare bones, and start with a blank style sheet. Now that I’ve done that a couple of times, I decided it would be nice to have all the work done, and be able to have all the template files cleaned, as well as a style sheet with all the divs and classes there, simply without the style.
Continue reading ““Blank” WordPress Theme”

"Blank" WordPress Theme

I’m offering up an updated, beta version here.

So, as I’ve begun designing WordPress themes, I found the tutorial over at Urban Giraffe invaluable. They walk you through the dissection of the default Kubrick theme, how to strip it down to bare bones, and start with a blank style sheet. Now that I’ve done that a couple of times, I decided it would be nice to have all the work done, and be able to have all the template files cleaned, as well as a style sheet with all the divs and classes there, simply without the style.
Continue reading “"Blank" WordPress Theme”

First Domino Falls

Some may know that I had a string of posts regarding Tom Delay, and though he keeps his nose out of the public eye lately, an associate of his has not had the same opportunity. In a case unrelated to his lobbying shenanigans, Jack Abramoff is facing numerous fraud charges stemming from a partnership he was involved in that purchased the SunCruz Casinos several years back. Coupled with that purchase, is the still unsolved gangland style murder of the man whom the partners purchased the gambling boat line from. At what point does some draw a connection between a lobbyist buying a gambling boat line, representing gambling interests, and a man shot dead in a hail of gun fire? To that, at what point does someone question the nature of his relationship to the Republican power, as in the likes of Delay?

Urban Fishing at its Best

Ahh. Red tide, heat indexes of 105º +, rising housing costs, traffic, Jeb Bush…all reasons to hate living in Florida, and Tampa in particular. But this morning, I walked for three hours in waist deep water, watching aquatic life teeming around me, all the while with the “twin cities” of Tampa and St. Petersburg bookending my morning.
Granted, I misapplied my sunscreen, thus I have splotchy red spots, and my fishing partner took home the grand prize of a 24 inch red (drum) fish, however, my world sorta slipped back onto its axis, as I maintained my realization that 5am drunken rooftop parties are no longer for me.
Drop me a contact if you live in the Tampa Bay area and would like to experience the splendor that is Florida land based fishing.

If I had been Bush…

Ah, the trials and tribulations of off line life vs on line life…Anyway, I was sitting with some friends, talking geek talk, and made a political analogy off the top of my head, that after second thought, wasn’t a bad idea, in some contexts. The idea was this…if the right wing machine was so-o-o-o worried about one Hillary Rodham-Clinton running for president, and the effects a Hillary presidency would have on the agenda, then why not appoint her to the Supreme Court? She was a Washington lawyer at one time, and there was discussion of appointing a non judge anyways. It would have totally taken the wind out of the lefts sails, and taken her out of any running for presidency. Sure, she would have been some what influential on the Supreme Court, but she would have been only one of nine. Then they could have put a serious conservative to replace Rehnquist, and set a conservative to be Chief Justice.

Ah well, it was a common sense and Microsoft analogy anyways…

Konfabulator Now Freeware

Konfabulator – Gallery
So, after Apple sees the popularity of the widget, they incorporate the idea into Tiger, without as much as a kiss before they screwed the developers of Konfabulator (or that’s how I read it, when the widgets were first previewed), and thus taking the feet right out beneath the developer. Thus, Konfabulator is released as freeware. With Versiontracker filled with widget after widget, and me still plugging away with Panther, I just might stick a few up on the desktop to “pretend” to be hangin’ with Jones.
Edit*Ah, Yahoo bought Konfabulator, and had every intention to make it free. So alls well, that ends well. And I did grab a couple of widgets for fun…

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Was It Too Good To Be True

Roberts Listed in Federalist Society ‘97-98 Directory
So it seemed that there was no real “dirt” to stick to Roberts, that perhaps the White House nominated a “good guy”, who just happened to be nominated by the right. Even former lawyer for Clinton endorsed him. (Not that I take that too far). But now it’s coming out, that Roberts is a card carrying member of the ultra conservative right, and worse, he doesn’t “recall” getting his card. How do you head a steering committee and not remember. Or worse, fake an association with a club simply for personal gain, only later to deny it. Is that the best America has to put on the Supreme Court?

A Sheep in Wolf (Blitzer’s) Clothing

Who told Wolf Blitzer that he was a hard hitting journalist? His interview this afternoon of Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez was full of weighted questions with zero, nada, zilch follow-up. On the surface, the question seemed legitimate, however, after the canned response (obviously the questions had been vetted), Wolf simply took Gonzalez’s answer and moved on to the next lolipop question. At least Russert and Mathews push a little further with the question before moving on. A good read on the subject, IMO, is Katrina Vanden Huevel’s comments on Bob Costas, of all people, filling in for another softy, Larry King. It makes me laugh when righties call CNN a “left-wing media organization”. What does that make Katrina and her magazine The Nation? A revolutionary media organization?

Yet Another View on the Wilson’s

I never read the USA Today, online or else where, but somehow stumbled onto this op-ed from the Wilson’s lawyer. Turns out he didn’t become their lawyer until one day, as their neighbor, he read an op-ed by one Robert Novak, informing him that his neighbor was really a CIA agent.
Just another face to the impact that Scooter and Karl had with their little game. How anyone can continue to defend them is beyond me.

A New Goal?

So CNN has this feature in their afternoon politics show, where these two chicks are surfin’ the web for blogs and what’s being discussed about the current events. So I realize all they are really doing is searching Technorati for keywords. And though I know Technorati pulls categories as tags, a politics rant may not show up in a search about Tom DeLay. Thus, I installed a tag generator for the site (via a WordPress plugin, Jerome’s keywords) so that I can start adding tags to my posts, and possibly get some hotty on CNN to read my post on air. Is that not the most geeky thing to strive for?

Does Bush Ever Listen to What He Says?

So I’m sitting here working, listening to CNN in the background, and the President is doing a press conference with the Prime Minister of Australia, and they open the floor to questions. Obviously, the two pressing issues that arise are the Supreme Court and the “Leak”. First question is about the Supreme Court, and whether or not it’s important to name a woman to replace O’Connor. So, he stumbles around, as usual, and then says this doozy, “ I want to be known as the kind of person who does what he says he’s going to do…“Link to transcript of press conference.
Now, concerning the “Leak”, didn’t he say that if anyone that was involved worked in the White House, they’d be fired? And hasn’t he basically recanted that statement in the last few days? So, Mr. President, which is it going to be, a “person who does what he says he’s going to do”, or a person who does what he’s told to?

And for a funny little read on Rove, check out “Perfect project: Rove deserves a Rove makeover” at the Miami Herald (note, it is a subscription site, so you may want to go to Bugmenot and get a login.)

Jon Stewart Has it Right,Again

Now, don’t get me wrong, I despise the Rove machine, and all it stands for. Which really however, is the root of what Jon Stewart said this evening about the Rove/Plame “scandal”, and that is, it’s not really about legality issue, its just another example of how this administration on the surface says and does one thing (see videotapes of Rove being interviewed, denying any involvement at all, McClellan vehemently denying any White House involvement, Bush’s statement about firing leaks), then under the surface the White House was involved, Rove did have a hand in it, and Bush has no intention of firing, not to mention even distancing himself from those involved (see the smirk on Rove’s face today exiting Air Force One with Bush). All the allegations of back room deals, war for oil, all come rushing to the surface when situations such as this occur. The logical conclusion has to be that if they are capable of lies about outing a CIA agent, or if not out right outing (we still don’t know who the first Novak source is) then why wouldn’t someone believe that Cheney really did have closed door meeting with the energy companies, or that the administration really did have a plan before 9.11 to invade Iraq, and that contracts with Halliburton were already in place? As the old saying goes, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

Frog March, Witch Hunt, or Much Ado About Nothing?

The national media had to latch onto the Rove story. No matter how many other global events occurred- hurricanes, bombings, pregnant no-talent bleach blondes attending film premiers- the story just didn’t go away. The question now is, what will come of it. Already, the lead talking heads from the Dem’s camp are posturing; Henry “Let’s call an investigation at the drop of a dime” Waxman, Harry Reid (who actually has had the most reasonable response I’ve read from the “left”) and now I’m hearing even good ol’ Kerry is waking up from the nap he’s been taking since last fall. But will all the clamoring, all the rankle, simply be spun as being a witch hunt, or will the Dem’s do the smart thing, and stand back, and give Bush and his boys enough rope to hang themselves?
Tiny Little Dots discusses the media growing a pair, and one would hope that considering the ramifications the case has had on how journalists will be able to do their job, I for one, expect them to take to task the red meat this story is exposing. But if the “frog march” that Joe Wilson first spoke of is to happen, the patient persistence of the media and left is the only way to let middle America take hold of this, and only then will Bush and co. be forced to take action.

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Chief Justice O’Connor?

So it seems with all the speculations in Washington on whether or not Rehnquist will step down, and how Bush is going to stack the court for years to come with conservative judges, the angle is being played that if he does step down for health reasons, that O’Connor should be nominated for the Chief Justice position. The New York Times reports that a conversation was had between some senators and Justice O’Connor on the very subject and that she said she was “flattered” and that she didn’t say no. I find it an interesting move, as she’s been lauded by both sides since her resignation, and find it hard to believe that Bush would be able o escape public opinion on the matter. If she were nominated, it would be a slam dunk conformation, and if she wasn’t nominated, the Republicans would be painted in a light that perhaps the dems could pull more seats in Congress in ‘06. I wonder what pressure there is now on Rehnquist to stick it out as long as possible, when just days before the hope was that he’d step down?

Emusic Affiliate

A quick advertisement (did I say that on a personal blog), but I so highly recommend this site for such a long time, that I have no problems advertising it along with personally subscribing to it. Labels like Merge, Matador, Bloodshot, 4AD, not to mention Jade Tree and Polyvinyl. All done in VBR Mp3 format. Consider Itunes is $.99 a track, the basic plan offers 40 tracks a month for just $9.99. You do the math. Best part is they offer a free trial of 50 downloads, so you can’t go wrong (and I get a kick back for every trial, so help me pay for my hosting while you fill in that back catalog of the Pixies, Pavement, and check out the new album from Daniel Lanois)

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