Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Tampa Bay Devil Rays 

Okay now I have been sucked in. I like watching the Devil Rays. I don't know why.
Sure watching Carl Crawford is wonderful fun. But I must confess something.

I was listening to sports talk radio and some bonehead caller stated that "we have to come out and support this team." No we don't! Look if they want my support they can put some players I want to watch on the field.
Rocco (injured I know)
Huff (so far so good)
Gathright (can't be worse that Hollins and Singleton)
Upton (he could be fun)

That would give us the fastest lineup in baseball since the mid 80's St. Louis Cards. I would love to see that team.

But they won't because the team would have to pay Gathright and Upton and Delmon Young sooner. And they don't want to part with the money. And if they don't want to spend the money on the team why should I?

Friday, August 13, 2004

Cat what? 

The news just broke that Charlie is now a cat 4 with 145 and headed for Ft. Myers.

Pray for Lee county.


1PM Charlie update 

Well, see what happens if you get all excited to early. It now looks like Lee County is going to take the brunt of the storm. And I had some home improvement projects that I wanted the insurance company to pay for.

I would check in with Donna over at Florida Cracker and wish her luck. BTW Charlie has been upgraded to Cat 3 with 125 mph winds. With 3 hours to go before possible landfall in Lee county this could get ugly down south.

But Gov Bush and Pres Bush have taken all the appropriate actions. Whatever that means.


11:30 Update on Charlie 

Things are starting to get fun.

It has just started to rain, very light rain, but rain none the less. A little breeze but we are still 3 hours from the time it is going to get interesting and 6 hours or more away from a landfall. But on the good news the homemade salsa and dip was just finished and the fresh bread will be done in 20 minutes. And most importantly the supply of fresh drinkable beer is very cold and holding steady.

Time for lunch.


Well hot diggity dog 

The all important 11 am report just came out and it now seems that landfall will occur in Manatee County.

Just my lucky day. Guess I can start drinking now. :)


Oh where am I 

Well Manatee County is located on the southern side of Tampa Bay. Bradenton, where I live is just south of the Manatee river and at the mouth of the bay. From the islands you can look east to the Sunshine Skyway bridge, up into Tampa Bay, or West to nothing but the Gulf of Mexico.

Also if you want a report from further south you can go see Donna at Florida Cracker.net, she is about 60 miles south of Bradenton and should have some fun weather starting right about now. Go wish her luck


Hurricane Charlie 

What is life like in a hurricane? Well it is about 11 am. No breeze to speak of here in Manatee County. The police have shut down the bridges to the outlying islands, by 2 pm they expect all support and rescue services to be unable to reach anyone who refused to leave their home. (There has always been an interesting private property rights angle to hurricanes, but I will leave that for the lawyers to talk about.)

As for my extended family, we have boarded up 2 1/2 houses and are gathered at the third. Seven people, all told, and 5 dogs in my little brothers 2 bedroom house. The current activities include, days of our lives, the morning crossword, reading a book on the patio, two running the last of our emergency errands and me on the computer. Oh we have a roast in, some fresh made bread and enough beer and wine to keep the US Senate happy. We are taking no chances with the essentials, I belief we current have 4 cases of beer and are wondering if it will be enough.


Tuesday, May 11, 2004

A little rant on the WOT 

I left this comment over at A Small Victory.

Another person left this comment:

Let's elect a president that promises to be a uniter and not a divider...oh sh*t we did that already.

Seriously though, it seems to me from my small corner of the world that the only success we've had with bring about democracy is to introduce some prosperity. When I was a kid I was horrified that we did nothing while China ran over democratic demonstrators with tanks. We look at all the excuses for attacking Iraq and they match up against China. We know they have WMDs, they can put them in f*ing orbit, they have a horrible human rights record, but we have increased our import of Chinese goods (I think Walmart imports about 10% of Chinese products in the US). It's obvious why neither Republicans or Democrats wanted to do anything with China...they don't have oil, they have cheap labor.
But low and behold...things are slowly getting better over there. Same with Vietnam. As a country prospers and its people become educated and hooked into the work, democracy gets a foothold.
The war in Iraq is tearing things apart and introducing more chaos. Getting rid of Saddam will help, but what next. Yeah we're trying to rebuild, but every time there's a fire fight it makes things worse for both sides. What's next? The only similar situation I have to draw a conclusion from is Vietnam, and it's not pretty.

I responded with this.

John, we fought two (2) proxy wars with China, Korea and Vietnam. All that was in the space of 20 years. And of course any direct war with China then would have resulted in an all out war with the Soviet Union. Because the USSR had the bomb since the 50s that would have meant nuclear war. Yes, we could have avoided that by invading China and the USSR in 1945-1949 period, but we were a little tired from something. In the early 80s Reagan began to wage an economic war with the USSR. This was a smashing success. Since then we have waged a similar war with China with the effects you have mentioned. We could do this because of one factor. M.A.D. (If you don't know what that stands for, it is not a magazine, go look it up) We could count on China not attacking the US mainland.

911 took away the option of changing the Middle East slowly by using our economic powers. Do you think we could wait another 20 or 30 years before changes took hold? I can't imagine the horrors or the cost of that approach. And I mean cost in terms of human lives.

We are at war with an ideology. It took us 3 generations to defeat communism. It took us 2 generations and 2 World Wars to defeat fascism. We have been fighting Radical Islam (RI) for a generation already, only we were never active about it.

The war in Afghanistan purchased us some time. We had to take the war to RI's home turf, the Middle East. Iraq is not and was not the heart of RI. But Iraq was and is our door to the Middle East. Through this war in Iraq we can move this battle to RI's home turf.

Some people in this country don’t think we need a war against RI. Of course many did not think we needed to fight in WWI or WWII. And many more thought we were on the wrong side of the war against communism. We were divided then. We had great divides even into the late 80s over communism. In fact, until the total collapse of a governmental system, many people thought we were about to lose. Then they gave credit to the “choice” to reform the Soviet system.

Michele wants to know how to come together. Simple, we win or we lose and then we move on. If we win, we do what America has done for 150 years. We salute our enemies and help them rebuild. We forgive and get to work. We did it after our Civil War. We did it after WWII. We did it for the parts of Korea we help free. We have done that for the old USSR.

We will come together in victory and the world will be better for it.

We will come together in defeat and I shudder to think what the lasting effect will be.

(Michele, sorry for the length of this. That video got my dander up.)


Sunday, April 04, 2004

ESPN is having a litte first day jitters 

Espn is a little rough to start but with Jon and Joe it should be smooth sailing.

Hey here is a question. How much better would the world series be if we had Jon and Joe instead of Tim "don't know much about anything" McCarver? just wondering

Life begins anew 

A flower breaks through the darkness of winter.....
Birds sing
trees bloom
First pitch. There is a God.

Baseball is back and all is right with the world

Wednesday, February 25, 2004

Numbers for passage 

Lets take a look at what folks have to do to pass this amendment through Congress.

Let us start with the HRC's congressional ratings: (note these are from the 107th Congress so not exact, but they should give us a good idea about the House.)

During the 107th congress 155 members received a 100% rating on HRC's issues. (151 Democrats, 3 Rs and 1 Ind) In addition another 54 members voted with HRC more that 50% of the time (34 Ds and 20 Rs)

Or 36% of the House had perfect pro-gay voting records with another 13% with pro-gay voting records. That equals 209 members who are pre-disposed to voting pro-gay.

While these numbers are not necessarily transferable to the Con. Amend. They do give us an idea of a starting place. Somewhere between 19 and 53 members of Congress would have to vote against their previous history. That is called starting in a hole.


How I am voting for President 

Since Andrew has suffered a meltdown, and the blogsphere is running amok and the Democrat race is all but over, I guess it is time for me to lay out the reasons I am using to judge the 2 applicants for the job of President.

1. The Economy: By this I include the deficit, taxes and proposed spending and jobs. I fancy myself an economic conservative to begin with.

On this Issue Bush has been horrible. There is no other way to view it. They spend money like they just won the lottery. There is no thought for future policies. There is no fiscal discipline. Granted, I lay a huge amount of blame on Congress. They have been getting away with acting like the budget is one of their old Congressional Checking accounts. (Write as many checks as you want and don’t worry about making deposits.) But in the end the buck, or lack thereof, has to stop with Bush.

Then we have Kerry. I want someone to convince me that there is any fiscal discipline in Kerry’s campaign promises. Raising taxes and creating more spending does nothing to help with the long term financial problems that face this country. Or am I missing something? Somebody let me know. Does anyone have a plan to reduce spending and let the government grow out of deficits? How about fix Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid?
Nobody wants to look at the fastest growing government expenditures. Hey, I know, lets bury our heads in the sand and hope it goes away.

Advantage Bush At least Bush won’t cost me more money for another 15 years whereas Kerry costs me more money now and more money later.

War, Terrorism and Homeland Security – I once has a discussion with the mayor of a small Florida beach community about Homeland Security. He wanted more money because he had to have one of his 8 cops sit for hours guarding the sewer plant, and it was taking that officer away from patrolling the streets. I did not know that terrorist were targeting every sewer system in America. I guess I misunderstood the threat of “we are going to blow shit up.” I thought that meant people and important things. Hey maybe we need to guard our garbage dumps! Just a thought.

Anyway, we are safer today than we were at the end of 2000 or the middle of 2001. America must shoulder the responsibility to confront the reality of international terrorism. From the 1972 Olympics to September 2001, the world did nothing. That time is now over. Hey, face it 30 years is a nice run for a political and religious movement committed to killing innocent men, women and children. To some countries the number of dead has not yet reached the level that requires action. To some people the number of dead has not yet reached the level that requires action.

To Bush it has. To Kerry it has not

Advantage Bush

Gay Marriage and the Constitutional Amendment-

I really wanted to see what was going to happen in Massachusetts over the next year. But the Mayor of San Francisco screwed that up. Note to the Gay Movement, you were winning. Heck you had almost won. Massachusetts would have come down on your side and the rest of America would have “yea Okay”. In a few years you would have had Civil Unions across the land that people would have called marriages and respected as marriages. I am not saying your battles were over, but Massachusetts was your Gettysburg and you are the North.

But that was not enough for some, now the rest of America is going to have to deal with an issue they are not ready for. I don’t know if this Constitutional amendment is going to pass, I hope it does not. But the damage is already done. Most of America doesn’t care about this issue. Most of America was willing to let it work out and accept the outcome. But now, thanks to the far left and far right, most of America is going to have to make a decision and take a stand. And most of America is going to come down on the side against gay marriage. This is going to hurt, and I am sorry. This debate is going to cause major damage to whole communities.

Both candidates are for the amendment and for civil unions.
Advantage nobody.

Everything else is cannon fodder.

Advantage Bush


Monday, February 16, 2004

Anti-Empire Blog 

BTW, I am going to try to make this an empire free zone. I will try to refrain from talking about the NY baseball teams at all. Because, and trust me when I tell you this people, nothing good can come from it.


Politics and Baseball in March 

Since baseball and politics are about the two most important things in my world, I thought I would draw some parallels

Most obvious is that being behind the in the polls right now is like losing 5 straight spring training games. You may not be happy but it is utterly meaningless. Just like in baseball your position in the standings does not really matter until after the break, either the all-star or the conventions.

But let?s handicap both races anyway.

Kerry = Chicago Cubs
Right now both look great. Both feature great pitching and can hit the long ball (strong campaign message and Vietnam buddies.) However, both are one bad injury away from saying wait till next year. If Pryor, Wood, or Sosa are lost so are the Cubs. And if this African intern pans out so is Kerry.

Edwards = Oakland or Seattle or San Francisco
Everyone likes them and they play really well, and everyone expects them to go far. But when it comes down to crunch time the fall short. Or need a lot of help (inter stories or opposing team bus accident)

Bush = Evil Empire
That brings us to the President and the evil empire. Both have all the money in the world. Both have some question marks surrounding parts of their games. Both can score at will and have the best team in the country. And both can make half the country foaming at the mouth mad. But can either put it together the right way to beat his challenger? Will either fall apart in a clash of titanic egos?

In any case, we will not know until after Independence Day.


The joys of Spring 

Hope Springs Eternal.
Birth of a new year.
Soon all will be right with the world.

Pitchers and Catchers report this week. Praise Allah!

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Dean, the Iowa Scream and the unending wisdom of Calvin & Hobbes 

Some more thoughts on Dean.

Steven Taylor stated today that his first reaction to Dean's Iowa Yell, was "perhaps the worst political observation of my career". Well, maybe. No I don't mean that he has made worse observations, but that it was not that bad of an observation.

The more I thought about the situation and the speech and the event itself, the more I thought Dean gave a very good performance. And it was, for his supporters. The folks in his room were thrilled by Dean's speech.

Quick aside; I have many comic strip books from the 80's and early 90's that I still read. One of my favorites is Calvin and Hobbes. Well in flipping through "The Indispensable Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson" I came across a Sunday strip that went like this:

Calvin. Panel 3 - In my opinion television validates existence.
Calvin. Panel 4 - Take this sled ride, for instance. The experience is fleeting and elusive. By tomorrow, we'll have forgotten it, and it may as well have not even happened.
Calvin. Panel 5 - But if we were on TV now, countless viewers would share in the event and confirm it! This ride would become a part of mass consciousness!
Calvin. Panel 6 - And on TV, the impact of an event is determined by the image, not it's substance.
Calvin. Panel 7 - So with some strong visuals, our sled ride could conceivably make us cultural icons!

Apply this to Dean's Speech. The impact of the event is determined by the image, not it's substance. The substance was fine, and even appropriate. The image was of a man flying off his rocker. And well, with a strong visual, Dean has become a cultural icon.

To further prove the cultural icon status of this yell, Michael Wilbon and Tony Kornheiser on Pardon the Interruption an ESPN sports talk program, took time to discuss the Dean Yell. When ESPN parodies a political speech, your at icon status.

Howard, welcome to your Dukakis moment. Goodbye.

Let's hear it for Joe 

this may be the funniest thing I have ever seen.


Hale DeMar Fan Club 

Count me as a member of the Hale DeMar Fan Club

I don't have a gun in my house, not because I don't belive in them but because I just don't feel comfortable around them. They freak me out. But I am not worried if folks like Mr. DeMar have them. More power to ya, Hale.

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