Monday, October 31, 2005

Heaven Is A Blue State

Hurricane Beta has now dissipated, and for the time being no new tropical systems are on the horizon. But all this destructive weather over the last few months has some people asking: Why is God doing this to us?

Back in September ago some religious leaders suggested that God targeted New Orleans because the city was planning some sort of gay pride parade, and He wanted to stop it from happening. Well, if that's the case, then the good lord has really lousy aim because a whole lot of heterosexuals suffered collateral damage.

Others have suggested that Mississippi was hit because of all the floating casinos that have opened there recently along the coast. Again, what about the people who suffered inland? Why did they have to lose everything if He was only trying to wipe out the gamblers?

And what about Florida, which was hit last week by Wilma, also a highly destructive category 3 storm? Was God targeting homosexual retirees who were playing Bingo?

No, I don't think any of that explains all these hurricanes. However, I think there may be some truth to the theory of divine retribution. But gay behavior and gambling simply don't explain the wide geographic spread of the massive destruction. So what common thread ties Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida together, except that they all voted Republican last year?

That's it!! God's pissed that we reelected Bush as President!!

Saturday, October 29, 2005

The Ultimate Tribute

In 1852, Senator Henry Clay became the first person to lie in state in the Rotunda of the United States Capitol. Since that time, only 29 others have received that honor. Nine of them were U.S. Presidents, including Ronald Reagan last year. Prior to Reagan, the last to lay there were two U.S. Capitol Police officers slain by a gunman in 1998. One of those officers, Jacob Chestnut, was the first African American to do so.

Beginning tomorrow afternoon, Rosa Parks' name will be added to that very special--and very short--list. She will be the second African American, the first woman, and the first private citizen to receive the ultimate tribute from this nation.

And if there is any justice in this universe, bus driver James Blake is rolling over in his grave right about now.

Well, It Does Explain A Lot....

Vice President Dick Cheney's top aid, Lewis Libby, was indicted yesterday on five counts. Bush aid Karl Rove was spared for now, though the prosecutor says that the investigation is continuing.

For time immemorial, government officials have fallen back on the standard "Sorry your honor, but I don't recall who said what to whom" defense. Libby, is no exception. According to his attorney, Libby will argue that he's just so darn busy that he can't possibly be expected to remember minute details of individual conversations, especially when they involve such trivial matters as disclosing classified material.

It's good to know that our country is being run by people with advanced cases of Alzheimer's.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Beta Version

You're not going to believe this, but there is now a Tropical Storm Beta in the Caribbean. The storm is expected to reach hurricane intensity within the next 12 hours or so.

Beta is the 23rd named storm of the season, further extending the record set by Tropical Storm Alpha last week. Florida and the Gulf states are off the hook on this one, as it appears Beta will target central America instead. Nicaragua and some Colombian islands will bear the brunt of Beta as they are expected to receive as much as a foot of rain. Severe flooding and numerous mudslides can be expected, and hundreds will likely die as entire villages are swept out to sea.

Hey, better them than us!

Here Comes The Judge, Here Comes.... Whoops.... There Goes The Judge

In a major embarrassment for the White House, Bush's nominee for the Supreme Court, Harriet Miers, has withdrawn her name from further consideration. Serious questions had been raised about her qualifications, and even a number of conservative groups had been criticizing the choice. That was surprising, since Miers is an evangelical Christian who had previously written papers opposing abortion. However, she apparently wasn't enough of an avowed, bloodthirsty, foaming-at-the-mouth Christian to suit the far right, so they turned on her. And there are few things in this world more frightening than the feeding frenzy that erupts when conservatives devour their own.

It is unclear whom Bush will nominate next, but an obvious choice would be Judge Judy. First of all, the American people are very familiar with her, so there shouldn't be any surprises in her background. Judge Judy runs a tight ship when it comes to managing her courtroom, and she doesn't put up with crap from anybody. And if any Senators step out of line while questioning her, she won't hesitate to kick their asses around the hearing room a few times.

Wilma As Seen From Space

Hurricane Wilma is now history. After hitting the southwest coast of Florida with 125 mph winds, she crossed the state and re-emerged into the Atlantic. Wilma then continued up the coast, generously donating her moisture to a nor'easter already slamming New England. As a result, parts of the region got hit with 20" of snow.

Officially, hurricane season runs until the end of November. November hurricanes are rare, however, so hopefully Wilma was nature's last word on the subject. Then again, given the records that were set during the last four months, perhaps we shouldn't get too complacent just yet.

So does the severity of the 2005 hurricane season mean that global climate change is already under way? And if so, is this change man-induced? Or is this all part of some greater natural cycle?

The debate will continue to go on. But in what can only be described as more evidence that something is, in fact, very wrong with the Earth's weather systems, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released an extremely disturbing photo of Hurricane Wilma taken by a weather satellite. It shows some unprecedented cloud patterns, and will no doubt provide more fuel for the debate over global warming.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

The Devil, You Say

I freely admit that I'm usually the first one to scream about the separation of church & state even as the US continues its slide into becoming a theocracy. But even I have to concede the following story is ridiculous....

The C.D. Hylton High School band in Prince William County, Virginia has been invited to perform at the Peach Bowl in December. And since the game is played in Atlanta, it seemed only fitting (the game is played in Georgia) that they would perform a rendition of "The Devil Went Down to Georgia," by the Charlie Daniels Band. Consequently the band has been rehearsing the piece, and even performed at a home football game.

At least that was the plan, until some numbskull wrote a letter to the editor of the local paper pointing out that Hylton is a public high school, and that the existence of the devil is a religious concept. Consequently, in order to avoid controversy, the band director pulled the piece.

First of all, the band director is a weenie. Secondly, while the idea of a devil may have originated in religion, the concept of such a being is also firmly rooted in mythology. Thirdly, it's just a freakin' song!! The tune is not even remotely religious. No one is going out there and warning sinners, non-believers, and democrats that they're going to burn in hell if they don't repent and become republicans!

Let them play the song, for crying out loud.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Book 'Em All, Danno

The investigation into the CIA leak case is expected to be concluded by the end of the week, and indictments are expected. The investigation thus far has focused on White House advisor Karl Rove and Vice President Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis Libby. The question at hand is whether CIA operative Valerie Plame's name was deliberately leaked to the press in an effort to get back at her husband, Joseph Wilson, who had publicly questioned some of the evidence used to justify the invasion of Iraq. Now comes word that Cheney himself gave Plame's name to Libby, who in turn may have leaked it to the press.

Personally, I don't see what the problem is. If Wilson had the audacity to question the Bush Administration's motives, he must be an unpatriotic commie. Heck, he should be shipped off to Guantanomo Bay and force to participate in the annual naked human pyramid tournament!

This renewed focus on the legitimacy of the war comes at a bad time for Bush since the total of American troops killed just hit 2000 earlier today.

Unfortunately for the Republicans, the scandals don't end there. New evidence has surfaced in the investigation of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist's questionable stock sale a few months ago. Frist, who is a heart surgeon and world renown expert on diagnosing brain damaged patients via videotape, ordered the sale of all his shares in his family's medical business shortly before the release of a bad business report. The problem is, however, that those shares were supposed to be in a blind trust, so how would Frist have known whether he even owned any shares? He claims it was purely a coincidence.

New documents, however, indicate that Frist was routinely informed of stock sales and purchases by the trustees. If true, this would defeat the purpose of a blind trust and raise serious ethics questions, as well as potential conflict of interest issues.

Then there is the ever lovable Tom DeLay, who was the House majority leader until his indictment a few weeks ago on money laundering charges. Last week he was booked and fingerprinted in Houston, which always looks good on the six o'clock news. But that's okay, because DeLay is now out on bail and back in Washington writing laws the rest of us have to follow.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Misplaced Geography?

Having devastated much of the Yucatan Peninsula, Hurricane Wilma has re-emerged over the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico and begun gaining strength once again. It currently stands at category 3, and is expected to hit Florida later today. And a few hundred miles to the east, Tropical Storm Alpha--the record setting 22nd named storm of the season--drenched parts of the Dominican Republic. Alpha's remnants are expected to continue on to the Bahamas but are not considered a threat to the U.S. mainland.

Meanwhile, citizens and trapped tourists in Cancun have begun looting stores in a desperate bid to stay alive.

Looting out of desperation?!?! Where do these people think they are? New Orleans?

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Where There's Smoke....

Even as Hurricane Wilma sits over the Yucatan Peninsula, its category four winds pounding the living crap out of Mexico, the debate rages over global warming. Is the spate of recent major hurricanes a sign of man-made climate change, or is it merely part of a natural cycle? Is it something that will eventually wane, or is mankind royally f*cked in the tuckus? All good questions, and ones I shall ponder as I continue to dig my underground shelter.

But the global warming debate shouldn't merely be about hurricanes along the Gulf coast. It needs to be about everything that's happening all around the entire globe.

For example, recent data shows that arctic ice is melting at an accelerated rate. The spring thaw in Siberia began 17 days earlier in 2005 than the 50 year average. Is that part of a natural cycle?

In Africa, 82% of Mount Kilimanjaro snow cover has disappeared over the past century. Again, is this a natural cycle?

Central Europe was battered by unprecedented heavy rains and flooding this past summer. And last year, thousands died in France during a severe heatwave.

And elsewhere around the world, weather anomalies continue to happen. Sure, bad weather happens all the time. But at some point you have to step back, look at the big picture, and ask yourself where "natural" stops and evidence of global climate change begins.

After all, if you wait till the room is completely filled with smoke before admitting there's a fire, you're going to die.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Rice-N-Curry Girl

I've never understood those Indian music videos.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Hey Baby, Can I Play With Your Volume Knob?

A company is proposing a new type of breast implant. One breast would contain MP3 files while the other side would hold the processor. A special bra fitted with a tiny battery would power the unit while a USB port would connect through the skin.

Icon Wars

People with broadband connections often leave their computers on 24 hours a day. But have you ever wondered what your seemingly innocent little electronic friend does while you're sleeping or away at work?

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Wilma's Really, REALLY Pissed

Hurricane Wilma not only intensified to category 5 status earlier today, but she has succeeded in becoming one of "most intense storms ever." At one point this morning its pressure in the center had dropped to 882 millibars, the lowest ever recorded in the Americas. The previous record holder was 1988's Hurricane Gilbert with 888 milibars. Generally speaking, the lower the air pressure in a hurricane, the higher the wind speed.

Forecasters now say Wilma will likely hit the Florida Keys on Saturday and the mainland on Sunday.

Stung by criticism of its slow response to the Hurricane Katrina disaster, the Bush Administration has already begun organizing food, shelter, medical supplies, and troops to aid in any necessary recovery efforts. Help from the Federal government is expected to begin arriving in effected areas as early as Easter.... Of 2008.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Is That A Chopstick In Your Pocket Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?

A pair of Chinese astronauts have successfully returned to Earth after spending five days in orbit. China is only the third nation to independently send its own astronauts into space.

The men completed all of their mission goals, including a number of experiments, gathering data on the effect of weightlessness on the human body, furthering China's goal of eventually landing men on the moon, and delivering an order of kung pao chicken to the International Space Station.

Monday, October 17, 2005


With the rather messy birth of Tropical Storm Wilma earlier today, the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season has tied the record set in 1933 for the most named storms. Record keeping only began in 1851, so it's entirely possible that there may have been a worse one back during the age of the dinosaurs, which according to some creationists, roamed the Earth in peace and harmony with man.... Well, except maybe when they got hungry.

Wilma, recently separated from Fred after he caught her in bed with Barney, is currently in the Caribbean near the Cayman Islands and headed north towards the Gulf of Mexico.

The hurricane season runs through November 30. If any more named storms do pop up, they will be named after letters of the Greek alphabet beginning with Alpha.

When Leaks Go Bad

Not only is the clock is ticking for White House advisor Karl Rove, it is increasingly looking like he's running out of time. Rove spent much of the day Friday testifying before a grand jury in DC. This is still part of the investigation to determine who leaked the name of a CIA operative to the press. The agent happens to be the wife of Joseph Wilson, who in 2003 had the audacity to call into question the validity of some of the evidence being used to justify the then upcoming invasion of Iraq. The question at the core of this is whether the agent's name was released as retribution for Wilson's failure to agree with the Bush Administration.

At any rate, there appears to be some conflict between what Rove told the panel in an earlier session and what other witnesses had to say. Unless he can talk his way out of this, Rove may soon find himself playing the part of Ned Beatty in a federal prison production of "Deliverance."

One can only hope....

Sunday, October 16, 2005


We now have a Tropical Depression 24 located in the Caribbean below Cuba. While its wind speeds aren't high enough for it to warrant becoming a named storm just yet, it is expected to strengthen into hurricane status in the next few days. Its track is currently forecast to take into the Gulf of Mexico by Friday.

Fill up your gas tanks now.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Now That's Gratitude

In the days following the Hurricane Katrina fiasco, and shortly after the Bush Administration awakened from its slumber and realized people were dying (well, mostly black people, so let's not get TOO worked up over it), a number of other countries offered aid. Among those was Great Britain, which generously donated 400,000 ready to eat meals. That is certainly something that would have been welcomed by the starving masses holed up in the Superdome at the time, right?

Well, yes, it probably would have been welcomed.... Except the $5 million worth of food never made it to Louisiana. In fact, the donated meals are still sitting in a warehouse in Arkansas. The US government blocked their distribution because of its ban on British beef, and is now seeking to donate it to some other country.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


Many people have been worried about all the recent disasters and what their greater meaning may be. Between the monster hurricanes along the Gulf, the earthquake in Asia, the tsunami in the Indian Ocean, global warming, the increasing threat of a pandemic flu, and the reelection of President Bush, there is fear that perhaps the end times are upon us.

On the other hand, there is also some good news for the future of civilization: The Simple Life has been canceled!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Remember What?

A new study says that eating fish on a regular basis can delay the onset of dementia.

Yeah, like I'm going to remember that....

Saturday, October 08, 2005


Scientists have finished reconstructing the deadly influenza virus that killed as many as 50 million people worldwide in 1918. They were able to piece together enough segments of its DNA structure, which had been recovered from victims buried in the frozen tundra of Alaska, to gain a complete genetic profile of the killer bug.

And in what may be the most disturbing aspect of this accomplishment, scientists say that the "bird flu" which has been popping up in Asia recently is beginning to increasingly resemble its 1918 cousin as it mutates and evolves.

Wait.... It's EVOLVING!?!?!? How is that even possible!?!?!? I thought these damn things were the product of intelligent design, so how the hell can they be EVOLVING!?!?!?

Then Came Tammy

This past September was the driest on record for DC in over a century, and the area had recently been classified by the National Weather Service as being in a drought.

Then yesterday the remnants of Tropical Storm Tammy showed up and began setting rainfall records. Since the storm's arrival, parts of the area have received as much as eight inches of rain. Some places in northern maryland have received over ten inches, resulting in a mudslide killed 1400 people.... No, wait, that was in Guatamala.

Whew!!! For a moment there I was actually concerned about the loss of life!

Friday, October 07, 2005

LCD Or Plasma?

Show of hands: How many of you even knew there was a Tropical Storm Tammy? Oh, that's not very many of you, is it? It formed two days ago and came ashore yesterday near the Georgia/Florida state lines with 50 mph and lots of rain, killing hundreds.... Well, okay, maybe not hundreds. But it's fairly certain someone somewhere slid off a rain-slickened roadway into some trees, severely bumping his or her head.

At any rate, it's indicative of yet another failure by the Bush Administration to adequately protect the American people.

Tammy's remnants are expected to drop over an inch of rain on the DC area today, and I've been busily preparing for it. I cleaned out the trunk of my '57 DeSoto to make plenty of room, and once the weather turns nasty, leading to a totale breakdown of the social order, I'm going out to do some looting.

Still trying to decide between Best Buy and Circuit City, though.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Pass The Pepto Bismal

A couple of days ago I mentioned the scene from Monty Python's "Meaning of Life" where the fat guy explodes after eating too much. Pretty funny stuff, but surely nothing that could happen in real life, right? Surely living creatures have enough sense not to eat too much in one sitting, don't they?

Well, not necessarily. A 13 foot python recently exploded in the Florida Everglades after he tried to eat an.... Alligator.

Guess President Bush isn't the only one around guilty of biting off more than he can chew....

Gone In A Flash

A recent casualty of the recent Nextel-Sprint merger is the famous trenchcoat guy. After 155 commercials, he has been temporarily--possibly even permanently--dropped as spokesperson.

Broke, single, and out of work, he has taken his trenchcoat and resorted to hanging out at bus stops and playgrounds.

Who knows? Maybe I'll bump into him.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

So What Do New Orleans And New York Have In Common?

In case anyone in New York city needs something else to worry about, here's a good one: Hurricanes. That's why city officials have been working on plans on how to evacuate millions of people in the course of a day.

It's not as farfetched as you might think. The Big Apple suffered direct hits by major storms in 1821 and 1938. A major hurricane hitting the city could produce 30 foot storm surges and flood all five Burroughs. The storm's effects would be magnified by the fact that hurricanes in northern latitudes move much faster than storms in the tropics.

I would be happy to take in a few evacuees myself if it ever becomes necessary.... Just as soon as I finish nailing down my valuables.

Someone Give Tom A Mint

William Raspberry says that it almost doesn't matter whether Tom DeLay is ultimately found guilty of the (now three) charges he has been indicted on. Rather, he likens it to something called the "Kablooey Principle."

That goes back to some experiments that involved dropping sand one grain at a time onto a steel plate. It accumulates into a neat little structured pyramid until at some point a single little grain causes the entire thing to go "kablooey"--that is, collapse into nothing more than a messy pile. The grain that finally does it is no different from any of the other grains; it's just that so much sand had piled up that the structure could no longer support itself.

It's kind of like the fat guy in Monty Python's "The Meaning of Life" who eats and eats and eats until he's completely full. Then the waiter entices him to have one little teeny-tiny mint, and the guy ends up going KA-BLOOEY all over the inside of the restaurant.

In DeLay's case, there have been so many ethics charges and allegations brought against him over the years that even if this particular case is not that significant, it may still turn out to be his kablooey moment.

Honey, His Diaper's Full Of Kryptonite Again

Normal people like us like to joke about the celebrities in Hollywood being just a bit... "strange." Of course, that's just talk, right? Just because they sometimes climb up on Oprah's couch and proclaim their love for each other doesn't mean they're different from the rest of us, does it? After all, given the opportunity, wouldn't we do the same thing.... Assuming we weren't brainwashed by some cult? They put their pants on one leg at a time just like we do, and their crap smells just like ours.

But every now and then someone in Hollywood will do something so bizarre and out of the norm, that we mortals have to step back, examine our beliefs, and admit that, yes, those Hollywood types really are f*cking weird.

The latest one to step over the line and enter Bizarro World is actor Nicholas Cage. A few days ago he and his wife had a baby boy. And that's a good thing. We normal people have babies all the time, too. Afterwards we give them names like Jason, John, Kathy, Fred, or Lugosi. In other words, nice, normal sounding names.

What we do NOT do, however, is go around giving our kids Superman's birth name, Kal-el.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Republicans: Abortion Now Sometimes Okay

In what can only be described as a major turnaround for the party, Republicans are now endorsing--even urging--abortions! At least that appears to be the case if William Bennett is to be believed. And since Mr. Bennett served in both the Reagan and Bush Sr. administrations, and is a respected leader of the conservative movement in America, he obviously speaks for the entire party.

The former Secretary of Education, who uses his radio show to pontificate about the decline of morals in America, last week took to the airwaves and said that one way to reduce crime would be to "abort black babies."

On the surface this would seem to be a major contradiction for Mr. Bennett, since he has in the past condemned abortion. Apparently, however, he is only opposed to aborting white babies. Aborting the black ones, though is okay and should even be encouraged.

It is unclear as to what Bennett thinks we should do about--GASP!!!--biracial babies.

Clarification Needed

A senior Cardinal in Rome has reaffirmed the need to maintain the celibacy rule among Catholic priests. It was unclear, however, if the rule applied only to celibacy when it comes to women, or if it also applies to 13 year old altar boys as well.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Pack An Umbrella

The bad news is that we now have a Tropical Storm Stan. It is currently over the Yucatan peninsula, and expected to re-emerge into the Gulf of Mexico tomorrow.

The good news is that even if Stan does eventually strengthen into an actual hurricane, it is on track to hit central Mexico, thus killing only Mexicans. While this may sound bad, it has the upside of reducing the available pool of illegal immigrants coming into the United States.

Meanwhile, some scientists are warning that the United States may be in for far more catastrophic storms like Rita and Katrina during the coming decades. There is disagreement over whether this is due to manmade global warming or other natural causes. For example, over the last century, several longterm cycles of stronger hurricanes have been documented. The latest cycle of bigger, more intense storms appears to have started in 1995 and will likely last 20-30 years.

On the other hand, recent findings indicate that greenhouse gasses in the Earth's atmosphere have increased 20% since 1990 alone.

Whatever the reason, Kansas is looking better all the time.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Still Hanging

Will the nightmare of the 2000 election never end? Here's another disturbing article about those damn chad things in Florida. Apparently now they're terrorizing people in central Africa and making them starve. I was so repulsed by the headline that I can't bring myself to read the rest of the article.

And yes--some how or another it's still Bush's fault.