Sunday, February 28, 2010

A Keith Olbermann Special Comment- AN AMERICAN CRY FOR HELP



For my final post for the month of February, I want to include a SPECIAL COMMENT from Keith Olbermann- An American Cry For Help

I've seen it already on a couple of websites, and have commented about it. If you haven't seen this, please take the time to watch. There are few among us who will not relate to Keith's words.

Talk to you again on March 1st!


Ayn Rand- Author, Atheist, Elitist, Icon of the Right.....and Fan of a Child Killer?


Commentary
Yesterday afternoon my cousin Terri posted a link on FACEBOOK about the 20th century writer- philosopher Ayn Rand (1905-82) and her fascination with William Hickman, a sadistic murderer who was executed in 1928 for the horrific killing of 12 year old Marian Parker. What makes this relationship relevant to today and to modern American politics is because of the resurgence of Rand's philosophy of objectivism, and Rand's popularity among modern American conservatives and Libertarians, among them Alan Greenspan, Clarence Thomas, Bob Barr, and Ron Paul. President Ronald Reagan was said to be an admirer of Rand's work.

Initially I was going to just provide a link to the page on AlterNet that told the story of Rand and Hickman, but then I became involved in spending sometime in reacquainting myself with Ayn Rand and objectivism. So for about six to eight hours on Saturday I read about Rand, and read more about her philosophy and her works of fiction, including The Fountainhead and what may have been her defining work, Atlas Shrugged. In recent years sales of Atlas Shrugged have seen a spike because her views of laissez-faire captalism, and of the ability of "man the producer" to lift himself higher to a full potential has appeal to those on the political right, and has been adopted by some in the "Tea Party" movement as a manifesto. And while doing my research I came across the original article about Rand-Hickman on The Exiled website. If you go to that version of the story you can see photos of Tea Party members carrying signs in support of Ayn Rand and her philosophy.

What began as a short linkup for this blog became a weekend long mini research project to to rediscover Ayn Rand- just who was she and what were her beliefs? And I struck gold with some amazing videos she made in her lifetime. So I watched her live performance with Phil Donahue from 1980, as well as an interview she did with a University of Michigan professor (circa 1960)....and I took notes; lots and lots of them.

Friday, February 26, 2010

CNN Political Ticker:- McCain links opponent to ‘birthers’ in Web video « - Blogs from CNN.com



This is an older story on CNN that I just picked up on; John McCain's campaign has linked his opponent for his Arizona Senate seat, J.D. Hayworth to prominent "birthers" Phil Berg and Orly Taitz.

You may remember Orly Taitz....she tried to prove that President Obama was actually born in Kenya. The only thing she succeeded in doing was proving she was the craziest person this side of Glenn Beck.

Below, J.D Hayworth in his own words....



READ MORE.....from Political Ticker-Blogs from CNN.com

The Health Care Summit and the GOP's " Synchronized Stalling"


The Dems said "We're very close to an agreement".

But the Republican attendees kept saying "Start over" and "a clean sheet of paper".

And MSNBC's Chris Matthews called the GOP'ers use of choreographed talking points "synchronized stalling" and "Kill (the) Bill".

Round Four- Day Two of Snowstorm, And It Ain't Goin' Away Soon

The snowstorm that was predicted for the Northeast began yesterday morning in the wee hours of the morning, with temperatures just slightly above the freezing mark. It remained above freezing for most of the day, so there was a heavy, wet, slushy snow that felt like cement when you tried to remove it. The roadways remained clear but slick, with little visible accumulation.

That all changed at sunset yesterday....it dropped below 32 degrees and has been there since, and then winds kicked in with 50 MPH gusts. The roads were covered, snow started to drift, and so far there has been more than 8 inches of new snow with an additional 6-10 inches predicted before the storm exits this evening.

The system is like a pinwheel in the Atlantic, centered off of the coast near Long Island, with an eye similar to what you'll see in a tropical system. So far for the winter we are in excess of 40 inches, probably closer to 50 at this point. Around 18 inches of snow is typical for a winter in the New York-New Jersey- Connecticut TriState area.

One thing is for sure....the record snowfall for any month in the history of New Brunswick has been 29 inches; 27 inches had fallen as of the start of the storm, so unofficially we are at 35 inches and counting, making February 2010 "The Snowiest Month In The Recorded History Of Central New Jersey".

I should have visited my brother and his family in balmy Cleveland for some better weather!

I'll be back............

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Socialism As Explained By MONTY PYTHON'S FLYING CIRCUS



Socialism!!!! The word scares the bejeesus out of Middle Americans, conservatives, Dittoheads and Teabaggers. The GOP has been using the word to describe healthcare reform- though at today's summit with President Obama they have remained civil and not brought out any photoshopped pictures of Mr. Obama and any of Leon Trotsky's surviving grandchildren.

The President has been called a socialist by such experts in the field as Limbaugh, Hannity, and Beck....but I think most Americans are still confused....they still don't know the answers to the questions....

"What is a socialist? Is it like a communist? And What is a Marxist?"

Leave it to our British friends to explain it simply for an American audience.

Below, Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, John Cleese, and Terry Jones take us into a fictional panel discussion involving the icons of Marxist-Socialism.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Round Four- Another Snowstorm Heads to The Northeast

Now that the snow had receded enough from the two previous storms, I finally got a chance to check out the downed trees and branches that were on the property...and spent the best part of the day doing some cutting with my handy pole saw, taking care of any big branches that could take out the powerlines in what appears to be the 4th major snowfall of the season and the third in the month of February.

Its supposed to be a 36 hour event, starting in the AM on Thursday.

Predicted snow totals for this area could be a foot or more.....somehow I think the earth very quietly shifted on its axis and I'm now living where Buffalo used to be.

This afternoon...to the A&P with all the other nervous town folk....I have more milk in the house than the average day care center.

Nothing more to say other than I'm beat....will go to bed early....and go on snow removal detail for the foreseeable future.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Dick Cheney Suffers Fifth Heart Attack


Commentary

When I heard that former Vice President Dick Cheney, 69, had his fifth heart attack since age 37 I thought long and hard about commenting. I lost a grandfather to heat disease, my father has had a triple bypass and my mother has had a couple of angioplasties- I know what its like for a family to live with heart disease. And in that regard, I have empathy for the Cheney family.

But it is harder for me to have empathy for Dick Cheney.

My conscience tells me its wrong to wish him ill because I find his politics divisive; but my heart keeps me from wishing him a speedy recovery- and that troubles me. If I were to wish him well, it would be hollow and said only because I feel required to do so in the name of humanity. But frankly, the thought of this man leaves me numb; not angry or spiteful, but just wanting him to fade into the background once and for all.

Monday, February 22, 2010

O'Hara endows Rutgers scholarship - Big East Blog - ESPN

Above, Shaun and Amy O'Hara

You hear, see, and read so many negative stories involving professional athletes...and its good to see some very positive press about one of the NFL's good guys.

Shaun O'Hara of the New York Giants is endowing a scholarship at his alma mater, Rutgers University.

The story is by ESPN's Brian Bennett.

READ MORE....from Big East Blog - ESPN

Even more from scarletknights.com.

Glenn Beck Sponsorship Loss Now At 119


Controversial FOX NEWS commentator Glenn Beck may be the most popular voice on that network, but according to the website stopbeck.com the list of sponsors who have dropped advertising for his nightly show or have refused to advertise on it has risen to 119.

The latest sponsors to drop Glenn Beck in the United States are George Foreman Cooking, Sylvan Learning, and Weight Watchers.

Click here to read statements from these three companies.

Among the remaining sponsors of the Glenn Beck program are Dish Network, The American Petroleum Institute, and the State of Utah's Department of Tourism.

Beck, an ally of the Tea Party Movement, gave a keynote address at the Conservative Political Action Conference this past Saturday. In his speech he compared Republican spending addictions to his own problems of past alcohol abuse.

More Aftermath Of Joseph Stack's IRS Attack


More stories continue to emerge in the aftermath of Joseph Stack's attack on a building that housed an Internal Revenue Service office in Austin, Texas.

Stack flew a small plane into the IRS offices killing IRS agent Vernon Hunter, 67, a Vietnam War veteran and severly injuring two others. This morning Stack's daughter Samantha Bell called her father a "hero". She stopped short of condoning the attack calling it "inappropriate" and "wrong". Bell is Stack's daughter by his first marriage. Before flying his plane into the Austin building he set his home on fire, endangering his current wife and child. Bell was interviewed via telephone on Monday on GOOD MORNING AMERICA.

Below, some of her quotes that appear on nydailynews.com. She said Stack is a hero....

"because now maybe people will listen."

"I have many cases of people I know that are suffering in the hands of the government and people literally dying because they are not getting the help they need,"

Below, a YouTube copy of the interview.



Some on the extreme right have begun calling Joseph Stack a hero and a champion against high taxes and big government.

His daughter, Ms. Bell, moved to Norway after losing her job in the United States while she was pregnant. In Norway she pays higher taxes but is eligible for government run medical care. Vernon Hunter's son makes that point very clear when he was asked about the Bell's comments.

Below, more from Vernon Hunter's son, Ken.



Also of note....this week the staff of NEWSWEEK debated among themselves- "Should Joseph Stack be regarded as a terrorist?

It is an interesting debate- lone wolf, separatist, right wing radical-left wing radical, lunatic, crazy, domestic terrorist, or just plain terrorist?

In my opinion, I agree with Patrick Enright NEWSWEEK'S Senior Articles Editor- if your intent is to indiscriminately kill innocent as well as the perceived guilty, then you are a terrorist.

And one more thing....all of the noise we've heard from the usual gasbags on the Far Right about the "underpants" bomber" from last Christmas, who's failed attempt gave so much grief to the Obama Administration from its critics....where are those same voices now? Are they afraid of alienating some of their base by calling this act by what it was, simply murder?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

"Wave That Flag! " The Dead Will Never Die


I've decided to give myself an unofficial-official night off from blogging tonight- I spent the day watching some college hoops and had a great seafood dinner, and quite frankly, I'm feeling a bit lazy right now.

Also....I'm still feeling just a little pissed off about the idiots who started the FACEBOOK page for Joseph Stack, aka The Austin Kamikaze. And quite frankly the antics of the usual wingnuts at the recent CPAC Convention have me wanting to take a break before my brain explodes.

But before I go....please enjoy the little tune leading off the old musical PLAYLIST, "Deadicated" to all future Teabagger Cruises, or any in the past that I may have missed.

I'll be back tomorrow with more stuff- that's a promise, not a threat.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

AMERICAblog News: Anti-govt anti-Obama nuts launch Facebook page to honor domestic terrorist who crashed plane into IRS office

One of the first things I saw this morning was a story on Tomcat's Politics Plus blog about some anti-Obama whack jobs who started a FACEBOOK page dedicated to Joseph Stack, the man who deliberately crashed his plane into a building that contained an IRS office in Austin, TX. A man believed to be Vernon Hunter, 67 years of age, was killed in the fiery crash, and two others were seriously injured.

After seeing that a group that allegedly numbering 300 people banded together to form a FACEBOOK group (since deleted) honoring a man who murdered an unsuspecting senior citizen and sent two more people to the hospital, I was outraged. But after calming down a bit I came to the realization that there are some out there in cyberspace who were even crazier than Joseph Stack; those who sought to turn him into an anti-government icon.



And after FACEBOOK deleted their page, some of these clowns started whining about their "right to freedom of speech" being violated. How about Vernon Hunter's right to see his 68th birthday and beyond? How about the lives of innocent people going to their jobs in that building that were not even related to the IRS? Or the lives of the average citizens who could have been in the IRS offices to pick up tax forms or to ask a question?

Some of these anti-government, anti-IRS, anti-Obama types couldn't understand the US Constitution if you gave them a coloring book version.

They've just condoned murder and domestic terrorism. Disgusting.....and shameless.

READ MORE.....from AMERICAblog News

Friday, February 19, 2010

Tiger Woods- He Doesn't Owe Me An Apology

Commentary

At 11:00am on Friday February 19th I wasn't one of the throngs glued to my TV to watch Tiger Woods make his statement regarding his extramarital affairs and his sexual addiction. I told myself I had things to do....but when the clock struck 11, I did have my car radio tuned into the presser....and after my 10 minute trip to TARGET was completed I stayed in my car to hear the final four minutes of Woods statement.

No....I was not "above it all".

It is commendable that Woods tried to make things right, and that he apologized to wife Elin, to his children, his friends, his family, and to all whom he may have hurt. But then he seemed to be offering an apology to not only all who were watching and listening, but to the rest of the nation...and the world....as well.

I for one have this to say.....Mr. Woods, you don't owe me an apology. Yes, you hurt your wife and your loved ones....you owe them an apology, and even more contrition. But for Woods to offer an apology to the public....and for those in the public who feel they are owed one from Woods....you are way, way, way off base.

Eldrick "Tiger" Woods is a prominent athlete who everyone once thought was squeaky clean All American role model, and proved to be a serial philanderer. He was caught, and then put through the modern equivalent of the stocks and the pillory....he becomes the butt of jokes by late night comics, he is the subject of constant scrutiny by the tabloid press and media, his estranged wife, kids, and mother are stalked by paparazzi. We really haven't evolved all that much from our Pilgrim and Puritan forebearers; we still practice the public humiliation of adulterers and cheats, only we don't do it in a town square anymore.

Yes Woods became a role model to millions, and yes he let them down....but it was the public who chose to idolize this man.....and the money machine that was behind this presentation is partially culpable in this public deception- they helped to enable a man with an addiction. Gillette and AT&T, and many others, threw millions of dollars at Tiger Woods. He won tournaments and became a legend before age 30, and the product endorsers helped sell the legend as an American Icon. And as Americans always seem to do....they took the bait.

But I ask this; isn't it the epitome of a perceived self importance that any individual outside the immediate circle of Tiger Woods feels they deserve an apology from him because he cheated on his wife? Adding to this mindboggling mentality is Woods actually apologizing to the known universe for something that at its base is a family matter.

The bottom line ....Tiger needed to grow up. And so do too many people who are wasting their lives pontificating and pointing fingers at his guilt, and those who can't get enough of watching this man emerge from the train wreck he caused.

The ancients believed that the gods had conflicts in their realm, and often walked about in our world at will, sometimes to resolve issues with each other, or with mere mortals. We moderns don't have "gods" in our world....but we do have a deified class that we call celebrities....once defined by the late Merv Griffin as "someone who is famous for being famous".

I believe it was George C. Scott who once said that the only thing he owed the public was a good performance. He was a hard drinking and often temperament guy who could care less about the trappings of stardom or awards....he once won an Oscar, and never showed up to pick it up, and never accepted it.

And Tiger Woods....he owes us a good performance on the golf course, but much more than that to those in his family and the ones closest to him.

Today Tiger Woods talked about the meaning of Buddhism in his life, and how he needed to get back to its principles. Many years ago I read a book that presented an old wisdom- many who idolized Woods should examine it. The book's title came from an ancient saying attributed to a Zen Master...."If you meet the Buddha on the road, kill him."

Of course, that is meant in symbolic terms, a metaphor if you will...it was not meant to say "go murder a teacher or your mentor". It means that being a follower of someone can be counterproductive, or even destructive. You may think you know him but you never really can. However, each of us has it in ourselves to be better people, even if we do not feel it or see it. But you must seek it internally. We must keep trying.

That philosophy might be in play as of now for Tiger Woods....and maybe it should be for the rest of us as well.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Kathleen Parker - Who will stand against Uganda's brutal anti-gay law? - washingtonpost.com



An important column from The Washington Post's Kathleen Parker. In Uganda there is proposed legislation to execute people for homosexuality. Even if it never becomes so extreme that gays are executed, the specter of imprisonment will be present.

READ MORE.....Kathleen Parker - washingtonpost.com

Joseph Stack; A Troubled Man and A Tragic Demise

A few hours after hearing the news about a plane crashing into a building in Austin TX, apparently piloted by Joseph Stack in an act of vengeance, I felt as if there was an epidemic of homicidal craziness striking out in all areas of the country. At the University of Alabama- Huntville last Friday Professor Amy Bishop allegedly shot and killed three colleagues and wounded several others in a dispute involving tenure. Today in New Jersey Shamsid-Din Abdur-Raheem pleaded not guilty to charges of throwing his two year old daughter off of a bridge into the icy waters below after snatching the baby after a rift with the child's mother.

I listened to the news in Austin this afternoon as it broke...and I heard the bits and pieces come in about the crash; that there was an IRS Office in the building, and the question came immediately- was there a connection ? Was this an accident or was it a deliberate act of violence.

After more information came in, and we found out more about the pilot, Joseph Stack, we began to get a glimpse of a once promising life that fell out of control. Stack was an engineer who believed his life was destroyed by the Internal Revenue Service. Before setting his home on fire and setting foot in the plane Stack wrote a rambling six page suicide note that aired his grievances against the wealthy, organized religion- in particular the Roman Catholic Church, Former President George W. Bush, and above all, the IRS.

I printed out his letter...after two pages of reading it became nearly incomprehensible, and more angry and paranoid with its Big Brother references. But even though Stack was angry at the government and its operation, he didn't seem to adhere to a specific political ideology. That fact seemed to stand out- he had no agenda other than revenge.

His solution to his problems was to burn down his house, and fly a plane into IRS offices to take out as many people as he could. Fortunately, there were no fatalities as of this writing, though two people are in critical condition and one person is unaccounted for.

Was this an act of terrorism? Some will say no. But to paraphrase what a commentator on CNN said today- had this event taken place in Baghdad instead of Austin we'd be calling Joseph Stack a suicide bomber.

And that's what this writer shall call him- a sad, twisted, angry domestic terrorist who's solutions to a troubled world included doing his best to make it just a little bit worse.

How does Senator Mellencamp Sound? - CBS News



When I first heard the news of a "Draft Mellencamp" movement regarding the soon to be open United States Senate seat held by Democrat Evan Bayh, I thought it was a mere trial balloon being floated by some who find the idea appealing. But then I thought about it for awhile...can there be a candidate anywhere in America who cares more about the working poor, displaced, and dispossessed? A guy who would and could run on his own agenda and gain grass roots support from Independents in a nominally conservative state in the American Heartland? A maverick who is more "mavericky" than certain self proclaimed mavericks?

And to those who are going to yell "just shut up and sing"....the usual right wing gasbags....its too late for that- the genie as long escaped the bottle. Performers and media types have been running and winning (or being appointed to) political office for decades now- think Shirley Temple, George Murphy, Clint Eastwood, Fred Thompson, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and yes, Sarah Palin are among that list.

But how can I forget a man named Reagan? And those are just the Republicans who were once made a living on film and/or television screens.

So why not John Mellencamp for US Senate?

Heck, had he known about this twenty-five years ago he might have kept the aborted stage name of John Cougar...it was easier to remember, and would have made for better bumper stickers.

READ MORE.....from CBS News

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Joe Biden CBS Interview- "Washington Is Dysfunctional"



Vice President Joe Biden is interviewed by CBS EARLY SHOW host Harry Smith in this in depth 21:17 video clip. The Vice President talks about his stimulus plan, the state of the economy and job loss and creation, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, his relationship with President Obama, and the former Vice President, Dick Cheney.

One of the most revealing aspects of this interview is Biden's assessment of Washington, in his words, being "broken" and "dysfunctional", and that this is the worst he's seen it in his time in public service.

This is n interview worth watching in its unedited form, unfiltered.



Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Where Have America's Manufacturing Jobs Gone?



The CBS News series "Where America Stands" takes a look at what has happened to manufacturing jobs in America, and what can be done about it. The Untied States used to be a nation of builders and people who work with their hands, and now those jobs are being exported overseas. Americans are in danger of becoming a people who import more manufactured goods than they make themselves.

Love stinks! Minn. farmer creates manure valentine | Odd Headlines | Comcast.net


With apologies to THE J GEILS BAND...

What should a creative farmer give his wife of 37 years for a unique Valentine's Day gift?

How about a half mile wide Valentine......made of manure?

Nope....I'm not making it up.

READ MORE....from Comcast.net

Monday, February 15, 2010

Crazy About "Crazy Heart"


I was already interested in the film because of all the buzz; yesterday the Jeff Bridges profile on CBS Sunday Morning had me even more interested. And this afternoon I decided to celebrate President's Day by treating myself to a movie.

And Crazy Heart was indeed a treat with Oscar nominated performances by Bridges and co-star Maggie Gyllenhaal, as well as for the BEST SONG, T- Bone Burnett and Ryan Bingham's The Weary Kind.



Bridges plays Bad Blake, once a big time country music performer and songwriter who's career now consists of playing bowling alley lounges and dives in the Southwest. Bad is 57 years old, has been married four times, walked out on his first wife and their now adult son 24 years before, smokes constantly, in an alcoholic, is broke, blunt, usually irresponsible, slovenly and unkept....but the magic of Jeff Bridges' performance is you almost automatically like the guy. He is talented and charming, and has a miniscule, loyal but mostly aging fanbase that he caters to on his road trips.

At one of these gigs Bad meets an attractive young reporter for a small newspaper. Jean Craddock (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who is a divorced single mother of a four year old. Though Bad is broke and one step away from a total physical breakdown- and that he is at least 25 years older than Jean- they fall in love. What follows next is the bittersweet story of a man and a woman who do love each other, and at least one (Jean) suspects that it will only end in heartache. The audience roots for things to work out for them because we grow to like and care about the characters- and then rational thought takes over, and we viewers know that this is doomed; if they really love each other they must go in different directions.

Robert Duvall, who was a producer of the film, steals a few scenes when he appears towards its end as Wayne, Bad's bar owner buddy in Houston, and Colin Farrell does a great job as country superstar Tommy Sweet, a onetime protege of Bad's who's career skyrocketed while Bad's careened towards earth. Though Bad and Tommy remained friends, Bad's pride made him envious of Tommy's stardom.

This is a gentle, easy to like film, in many ways its similar in theme to The Wrestler- but at the end of that film the audience felt sadness at the apparent demise of Mickey Roarke's character. In Crazy Heart you leave with a feeling of hope for the futures of the two main characters.

Jeff Bridges played "Bad Blake" like he just got out of Outlaw Country Boot Camp run by Willie Nelson and Hank Williams, Jr. He's part of Hollywood royalty but he became a Good Ole Boy's Good Ole Boy. And the dude can play, and is a pretty good singer. Maggie Gyllenhaal's Jean was a strong, smart young woman who had been damaged in the past, and wanted no part of that for her and her young son again. Her relationship with Bad was a longshot....but she rolled the dice anyway.

Kudo's to writer/director Scott Cooper who adapted Crazy Heart from the novel by Thomas Cobb. This was his first foray into direction, and he did a great job.

After seven tries Jeff Bridges may finally have that first Oscar for his mantle..and maybe one for Maggie Gyllenhaal as well.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy President's Day- Everything You REALLY Need To Know About All 44 Presidents



I wanted to take a few minutes to wish everyone a happy President's Day. You know, this day should mean much more to people than just an opportunity for retailers to sell you more junk that you really don't need.

This should be a time to honor and think about our Presidents, all 44 of them. When I was a little kid my Grandpa gave me a collection of little plastic statues of all of the presidents, with a short book that talked about them, gave the years of their presidencies, party affiliation, famous quotes, and accomplishments.

To this day, I can name the presidents in order, what party they belonged to, and most of the years of their terms of office. No....I'm serious. I really can.

So in honor of President's Day, I'm going to borrow an idea from Father Guido Sarducci's "One Minute University", and blend it with the concept of TWITTER.

I'm going to educate you, the reader, about everything you really need to know about all 44 Presidents of the United States....in 140 characters or less, for the most part.

This is all stream of consciousness, no notes, books, or second or third tabs....its whatever pops in.

Ready or not....let's begin!



1.George Washington- The "Father of His Country". I never knew they had Viagra in those days. Couldn't tell a lie, yet ruthlessly chopped down poor unsuspecting cherry trees

2.John Adams- rolly-polly first Prez to live in the White House. He deeply loved wife Abigail. He wasn't alone.....just about everybody liked Abigail more than John.

3.Thomas Jefferson- reclusive brainiac who made greatest real estate deal in US history- yeah, that's right, Mr. Trump....the Louisiana Purchase. OK?

4.James Madison- he and wife Dolly ran first unfranchised ice cream parlor from the West Wing. He could afford it- Madison was our smallest President

5.James Monroe- "If you Europeans even TOUCH America, my Uncle Rocco will be paying you a visit".

6.John Quincey Adams- The "Apple Don't Fall Far From The Tree" son of John Adams. One and done presidency.

7.Andrew Jackson- A great general with a bad attitude. Say anything about his wife and you'd be a dead man.

8.Martin Van Buren- A bald guy with followed Jackson. That's all I remember.

9.William Henry Harrison- Died one month into his presidency, giving him no time to screw things up.

10.John Tyler- 1st vice president to succeed to the presidency. Was called "His Accidency"......no, really. I'm not kidding about that one.

11.James Knox Polk- couldn't find good jalapeno peppers in Washington, so he decided to invade Mexico.

12.Zachary Taylor- Hero of Mexican-American War who never voted in his life and had no political experience. He too died in office before he could inflict damage.

13 and 14. Millard Fillmore and Franklin Pierce- nothing to say about them. Either I was playing hooky or the dog ate that assignment. So long ago I can't remember.

15.James Buchanan- Only bachelor president. He allegedly had a male roommate for many years while serving in Congress....not that there's anything WRONG with that.

16.Abraham Lincoln- "Honest Abe", "The Great Emancipator". Saved the Union during the Civil War only so it could be divided by "Red State- Blue State" 140 plus years later. He made growing up in log cabins fashionable for several generations.

17.Andrew Johnson- A tailor's apprentice who became President. The way things went for him he should have stuck to men's wear.

18.Ulysses S. Grant- His real name was "Hiram". Changed his name after building a Trojan Horse in his basement as a kid. Good general, miserable president.

19.Rutherford B. Hayes won disputed election from popular vote winner Samuel Tilden, and there were no hanging chads in sight.

20.James a Garfield- was murdered by disgruntled office seeker. James A was not related to actors John Garfield, Alan Garfield, or Garfield the Cat.

21.Chester A. Arthur- had really huge sideburns.

22.Grover Cleveland- Famous SESAME STREET character named after him. Not related to Moses Cleaveland, who founded the city of Cleveland, Ohio....are you confused yet?

23.Benjamin Harrison- William Henry Harrison's grandson. I'm pretty sure that's the only reason we remember him.

24.Grover Cleveland- What? Him again?

25.William McKinley- wanted quality cigars so he invaded Cuba.

26.Theodore Roosevelt- "Teddy". "TR". He spoke softly and carried a big stick, and used it to beat the crap out of Philippine insurgents. And without him, Van Halen probably would have never written a song called PANAMA.

27.William Howard Taft- Three hundred pound "Big Bill" was our most "hefty" president. Allegedly was stuck in the White House bathtub. Was "one biscuit short of being a building" 80 years before William "Refrigerator" Perry.

28. Woodrow Wilson-President during World War I, he was a Virginia born president of Princeton, and the former governor of New Jersey. Amazing that anybody named "Woodrow" could win in Jersey.....and a Princeton guy at that.

29.Warren G. Harding- a better card player than President who had the good sense to die in office before the Teapot Dome Scandal broke.

30.Calvin Coolidge- "Silent Cal". He was the favorite president of the late columnist Robert Novak. That's all you need to know.

31.Herbert Hoover- By all accounts a good man who helped feed Europe after WWI, but was ineffective in guiding America out of The Great Depression. Best known for "Hooverville".

32. Franklin D. Roosevelt- Led America out of the Depression and WWII.Proved you didn't need two legs to be a great president; but few knew he was confined to a wheelchair. Seems incomprehensible that the nation didn't know about his condition.

33. Harry Truman- "Give 'Em Hell, Harry!" And he did. Possibly the most brutally honest man ever to sit in the White House.

34. Dwight D. Eisenhower- "I like Ike". The joke was "The Eisenhower toy....you wind it up and it does nothing for eight years". But school desegregation began in his presidency, the Interstate Highway System was built, and we began our exploration of space.

35. John F. Kennedy- What a time it was....CAMELOT. America needed a prince and princess, and we got Jack and Jackie, for about a mere 1,000 days.

36. Lyndon B. Johnson- He could have been the best president ever....but there was this little problem called Vietnam.

37. Richard M. Nixon- Singer Connie Francis sang a campaign song, "Nixon's The One". It took on a different connotation during the Watergate Scandal.

38. Gerald R. Ford- The rumor is Chevy Chase built a shrine to President Ford in his basement.

39. Jimmy Carter- "Get yer peanuts here!".... "No gas today". A good man, and a better "Ex-President" than President.

40. Ronald Reagan- The rumor is every Republican candidate for the presidency since 1988 has a shrine to President Reagan in their estate's guest house. If the GOP could ordain sainthood Ronald Reagan would be their patron.

41.George H.W. Bush- "Read my lips".....we did. And it was one and done.

42.Bill Clinton- Could have been one of the best ever, except for a little problem named Monica Lewinsky.

43. George W. Bush- Hey people, I'm not going to go there....it would be tooooooo easy. George, just stay down there in Texas, and don't touch anything. OK?

44. Barack Obama- Oh I forgot....he can't be President since he was born in Kenya. At least that's what some of the guys say on the Internet- so it HAS TO BE TRUE!!!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Valentine's Day- Saudi Style!


If you are a cynical sort who thinks Valentine's Day is only a money grab for florists and candy makers, and that it often puts more strain a relationship than warms it.....you might have a group of friends out there.

"There" is Saudi Arabia.

And "they" are the Commission for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, aka the religious enforcement police in Saudi Arabia.

This morning I was having a leisurely late breakfast while watching RELIGION AND ETHICS on PBS, and the story came up about how the religion cops in Saudi Arabia are going around busting retailers who are selling Valentine cards, hearts, candies...and even warned about selling anything RED this Sunday.

Meris Lutz wrote this story in The Los Angeles Times about the situation. Below are a few paragraphs.

A spokesman for the Saudi virtue commission, Sheik Ali Qarni, defended the ban on celebrating Valentine's Day on the grounds that Muslims know the true meaning of love -- the love of God -- and behave accordingly throughout the year.

"Muslims are people of love, as evidenced by the fact that this word appears in [the Koran] 83 times," Qarni told the newspaper Al Watan.

The newspaper said Valentine's Day is outlawed based on a fatwa against "pagan holidays."

The commission ran ads this week warning shop owners against selling any merchandise related to Valentine's Day, which is Sunday.

Another newspaper, Al Riyadh, ran articles with headlines such as, "A fifth of adults prefer to spend Valentine's Day with their pets instead of their partners," and "Valentine's Day flavored with cocaine in the Netherlands this year."

Well that does it- I was thinking about spending a relaxing couple of weeks in Saudi Arabia....but if I can't bring my extensive Rutgers Scarlet Knights wardrobe, then I'm afraid that's out.

And I used to think that the Republican "purity test" was repressive!

Friday, February 12, 2010

University of Andy- A GUY'S GUIDE to VALENTINE'S DAY


I'm like a lot of guys when it comes to Valentine's Day- a total klutz who never seems to get it right. I was going to do a neat, formal blog entry about Valentine's Day....but it would be bogus.

I don't know what I'm talking about. Take a look at that poem above. I can't even get that right.

But I found somebody who "gets it"....his name is Andy Botwin, also known as "Uncle Andy", "Bill Sussman", and "Justin Kirk".

A true Master of His Domain.

Andy has established a seat of "higher" learning.....The University of Andy.

Below, he'll tell you everything you'll really need to know to have the Valentine's Day of a lifetime with that special someone.....or ask for your tuition back.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Bill Clinton has two stents placed in heart artery | General Headlines | Comcast.net


It appears former President Bill Clinton is going to be fine after undergoing an emergency angioplasty today.

READ MORE....from Comcast.net

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Mr. President.

Post Blizzard- Digging Out/ 900th Post Edition!!!


I'll start off by saying this....we people in Central New Jersey got off easy compared to people in Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington. This morning I measured 8 inches of snow, added on to the four I removed early yesterday, giving us a grand total of one foot of snow for this storm...a lot of snow and can be considered a heavy snowfall by most experts, but it pales in comparison to whats been going on in the areas I mentioned before.

Add 7.5 inches from the Saturday storm, and we got just about 20 inches from the two storms in a matter of five days. There was some nervous times last night, below you can see the tree that broke in half in the back yard. The good news for us in this semi-rural area was the trees shielded us from some of the drifting from the high winds, the bad news is there were downed trees and tree limbs. Luckily, no power outages.

I have to admit it...after the storm was over, it was nice just to walk around and see just how beautiful it was, just very white and bright, and feeling warmer than 30 degrees with all of the reflecting sunlight....but man, it was a heavy, wet snow- much more so than the light, fluffy powder that fell on Saturday.

After today I've re-evaluated what were the most three important inventions and innovations in the history of mankind- (1)Fire (2) the wheel (3)the snowblower.

I'm taking my snowblower out this Sunday for Valentines Day.....she deserves it.

BTW...this is the 900th blog post for UT &MR!!!

And they said we wouldn't last!!!!








ABOVE.....That's a mature birch tree bent down to ground level by the weight of the snow.

This is the pine tree that snapped in half yesterday....had it fallen right instead of left it would have taken out our neighbor's fence.

Updates- 6PM Thursday Feb 11

More pics from a walk around the neighborhood several hours ago.



Also....more about the falling branches and trees in the area. A local man was struck and killed by branch from a snow covered tree during the blizzard yesterday while he was clearing his driveway.

Here's the story from The Home News Tribune and mycentraljersey.com

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Blizzard of 2010 Diary-Winding Down

Its about 9:30 PM, still snowing and wind is blowing at 10-20mph but it appears that the worst of the storm is over. I haven't done a measurement yet but New Brunswick had 10 inches of snow as of 5 PM, and there must have been a couple of more inches since. I'm guessing about a foot of snow, and its not quite over

My concern about falling trees and branches was justified....one of the pine trees in our back yard snapped in half from the weight of the snow and came crashing down. Luckily it didn't do any property damage- had it fallen in the opposite direction it would have flattened the fence of the neighbor behind us. When I was out there checking for damage I heard other branches breaking all around me. Its going to be a mess out there when the shooting stops.

The linguine and sausage for dinner......mmmmmm- mmmmm good!

The Rutgers women did play Seton Hall at the RAC, I was listening to it on the radio- I'm a season ticket holder, but it was too nasty out there and the roads need to be plowed- AGAIN.

RU won, 54-44, with Brittany Ray scoring 19 points. The 8,000 seat RAC had approximately 75-100 fans who braved the storm, according to radio commentators Ed Cohen and Mark Peterson.

Now those are some superfans! Let e'm sit behind the bench for the next home game!

Blizzard of 2010 Diary-Part Two; Its a White Out, Ladies and Gents

Its about 2:40 PM., and as predicted the storm has really intensified....there was a lull from mid morning until about 2PM with an additional inch of snow accumulating, but it looks like its coming down at a rate of two inches an hour.

We'll be OK...I think.

What does have me concerned are the tree branches all over the neighborhood...many are bending from the weight of the snow, particularly the evergreens. Its just a matter of time before we have some branches or smaller trees coming down. Hopefully they won't be taking powerlines with them.

Visibility is very poor, with gusty winds.

Curiously, the Seton Hall- Rutgers Women's basketball game is still on for 7;30 this evening. Getting there just might be a problem, getting home even more so.

We're in a state of emergency, but basketball marches on!

THE HOME NEWS TRIBUNE morning edition arrived about half an hour ago (kudos to the guy who brought it)....and so did the mail (neither rain nor sleet nor snow, etc, etc).

That's all for now. All of this snow makes me hungry. Anybody want some linguini with hot sausage?

You bring the wine.

Blizzard of 2010 Diary-Part One

Its nearly 10:00am on Wednesday Feb 10, and so far the storm predicted for the New York/New Jersey Metropolitan area has performed almost exactly has predicted by forecasters.

I woke up at 8:15, and went outside to find about 4 inches of snow that had all but stopped....but meteorologists said don't be fooled by what you'll be seeing in the AM, its going to get much, much worse by lunchtime- we're starting to see that now.

It took about half an hour to clear the drive way with the snow blower (which I kissed and thanked for doing its job). But as soon as I finished and salted the area, the snow came back with more intensity. Its starting to snow heavier, and the winds are picking up.

At 10 am local forecasters are saying that the eye of the storm is off the Virginia coast and intensifying, and should be churning up the coast into a classic nor'easter....and officially, its being called a blizzard- I feel so much better about that, it adds drama to the the blog posts.

That's all for now. Time to check out the township website for any news, grab some breakfast, and get ready for the next round.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

YIKES!!!! More Snow in the Northeast!

That's me on the right...I know, the glasses are a giveaway.

On Saturday we got eight inches of snow in the area...and Round Two comes overnight and into Wednesday with an estimated 8-14 inches of snow predicted for most of New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia.

But I can't really complain, especially when you consider that Washington DC and vicinity got as much as 30 inches in the weekend storm, now with more on the way. And our South Jersey pal (and frequent commentator) Sue got two feet of the stuff in her area. Many municipalities in New Jersey have already used up their snow removal budgets for the year (before Valentine's Day), and the southern New Jersey counties have already been declared a disaster area by new Governor Chris Christie (he wanted this job...good luck).

New York City is taking this very seriously...they called school off for Wednesday a few hours ago, before the first flakes have even fallen.

Some media types are calling this latest round "Snowmaggedon"....one storm is churning up the coast from the Carolinas, while a second front moved East from Chicago and the Great Lakes Region....wasn't there a disaster movie with Dennis Quaid with the same scenario a few years ago?

If you needed some more warm clothing for the duration of the winter....FAGGEDDABOUTIT!!!! "Tar-jay", for example, has closed out their winter wear; yesterday the loyal associates were putting out tropical shirts, shorts, and swimwear for Spring and Summer- am I missing something, or have pitchers and catchers reported for Spring Training? Can somebody tell those buyers about the purpose of Groundhog Day!

Got the mandatory stuff to see us through this mess....the usual staples, plus the 4 liters of COKE from A&P for 5 bucks (with an A&P Card, of course), Little Debbie Brownies, TOSTITOS (with a touch of lime) and Southwestern Ranch dip- and beer, of course...I love you, Yuengling Brewery , even though I always have trouble spelling your name.

We can handle anything now....and if we can't we'll just have a party at the Emergency Shelter of our choice....and they damn well better have cable!

Rock And Roll Today: Beatlemania!



I wanted to link up with Rockin' Jeff's Rock and Roll Today site to give readers of this blog a little history regarding the Beatles, and point the way to a video showing their live debut in the United States, 46 years ago on this date.

"Get back to where you once belonged...(get back Jo-Jo)".......

Rock And Roll Today: Beatlemania!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Rep. John Murtha, voice for veterans, dies at 77 | Political Headlines | Comcast.net

He was controversial and had his flaws....but he always watched out for constituents, and for the American veteran.

Thank you Mr. Murtha....RIP.

READ MORE....from Comcast.net

More Super Saints- Who Woulda Thunk It?


The World Champion New Orleans Saints.

Who woulda thunk it? I suppose after the Red Sox broke the Curse of the Bambino and the White Sox finally did their time in purgatory for the 1919 Black Sox Scandal, then all things shalt be possible.

Especially for Saints.

This game will dissected and analyzed for the next day or so by sports talk media, print writers, and bloggers. But at seems clear that there were three key moments that won the game for the Saints.

(1). The 3 and out by the Colts with with 1:49 left in the 1st half. The Colts stopped the Saints on the previous series at the Indianapolis one yard line and the score 10-3 Indy. What looked like a bad to decision to go for it on 4th down by Saints coach Sean Payton to tie the game worked out in the long term. The Saints didn't tie the game but turned the ball over to the Colts, who had to be conservative to get out of the shadow of the goal line. At that point the Colts had only three plays in the entire quarter, holding the ball for only 1:20. The Saints defense buckled down bigtime, and held the Colts to only nine yards on the drive from the Colt one yard line, taking 1:03 off of the clock. Had the Colts gotten a first down, maybe Peyton Manning opens up the offense a bit with 35 seconds left, perhaps getting into field goal range, or hitting one of his receivers for a TD. Instead, the Colts punt, the Saints take over at their own 48, they run five plays in 35 seconds to get into field goal range, and score on Garrett Hartley's 44 yard kick as time expired. Halftime Colts 10, Saints 6....but the Saints seized the game's momentum from Indianapolis.

(2). THE Onside Kick And it will forever be known in Saint's lore as "THE Onside Kick", if not in the annals of NFL history. This might have been the gutsiest play in the history of The Super Bowl, and it was quite a call by Coach Payton. The onside kick was executed to perfection by punter/kickoff kicker Thomas Morstead, who spent an agonizing extended halftime thinking about the plan when told of it by Payton. At halftime The Who sang "We Won't Get Fooled Again" as part of their medley....but this gem of a special teams play fooled not only the Colts, who were expecting the Saints to kickoff deep, but just about anybody in known universe who was watching the game.

Again....who woulda thunk it?

So the Saints recovered the ball on the their own 42 yard line to start the second half, and then go 58 yards in 6 plays for a Drew Brees to Pierre Thomas touchdown. New Orleans took a 13-10 lead. On the following possession by the Colts answered with a 76 yard 10 play drive that resulted in a Joseph Addai touchdown run....but you got the sense that the Colts knew they were in a dogfight and had met their match, even though at that point they regained the lead, 17-13. The Saints would get another field goal to close to 17-16 in the third quarter, and then took the lead for good at the 5:42 mark of the 4th quarter on a 2 yard pass to Jeremy Shockey, and then a Saints two point conversion was ruled good on review after initially being incomplete. It was then 24-17 New Orleans, with the final bit of drama to be played out.

(3). The Pick Six. How many times in his Hall of Fame career has the Colts' Peyton Manning won a game in the fourth quarter? The Saints are leading 24-17 with 5:42 left in the game. After a five yard false start penalty, Manning hit Pierre Garcon for a 17 yard game and a first down. Then on second and ten Manning hits Garcon for a 10 yard gain to the New Orleans 48. Then its Manning to Reggie Wayne for 12 yards to the Saints 36, another first down. Next play, Manning to Wayne for five yards, at the Saints 31 with the clock ticking under four minutes. A Manning to Austin Collie pass is incomplete. Its 3rd down, the ball on the New Orleans 31 yard line, with the Colts needing five yards for a first down, and only 31 yards to tie the game at 24 with a touchdown and a PAT.

And then came the dagger.....Manning tries to hit Reggie Wayne, who had been hobbled all week with a knee problem. The Saints' Tracy Porter stepped in front of Wayne and picked Manning's pass and took it 74 yards for a touchdown, Saints. It was then Saints 31-17 with 3:12 left in the game.

Manning's interception was the only turnover of the game for either team....and it sealed the win for New Orleans.

Who woulda thunk it?


Almost immediately after the game some of the sports pundits started chiming in about this being a Colts loss and a failure by Peyton Manning rather than a great team victory by the Saints, who won all three phases of the game.....Skip Bayless, of ESPN, what the hell are you smoking? There are others of course, but those pointing a finger at the Colts are in the minority.

This was a complete win for New Orleans, who deserved it. This win was theirs, and their city's, and their region's. The irony of the New Orleans Saints having to beat the scion of the First Family of New Orleans sports to achieve their first ever Super Bowl win is amazing- perhaps its something that author Squire Rushnell would call a "God wink"; something that seems like coincidence, but has almost a divine stamp on it.

Who woulda thunk it?

Final thoughts- The commercials- the E-TRADE commercial with the babies was hysterical, with the "ladies man" being questioned about "that milk-aholic". The BUD LIGHT ad with the house made of beer cans was amusing, as was the BUDWEISER spot with the horse and the calf, and the Betty White/Abe Vigoda ad was funny as well- even though I can't remember what they were selling. Also, that controversial "Focus On Family" ad with Tim Tebow and his mother was much ado about nothing- it was so quick it doesn't really register with the casual viewer.

But the funniest ad, even though it was really a CBS promo, was the one with Letterman, Oprah, and Leno....it was SURREAL! The best.



And the halftime show...as I said before, I love the Who. But they really are part of "MY Generation"- though they are a bit older than me. The show was well done, with great lighting and effects, and was performed perfectly, but predictably. Nothing new. I guess I was waiting for Pete to dislocate his arm doing a windmill on guitar, or seeing if Roger could hit the high notes (he was straining). Here's a clue- when your lead singer plays Ebeneezer Scrooge in a stage version of A CHRISTMAS CAROL (as Roger Daltry did a few years ago), your not just getting old-er....your getting old- as I am as well.

I agree with the younger people out there.....its time for the halftime shows at the Super Bowl to get younger.

Dat's it....Congrats, "Who Dat Nation"!!!!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

SAINTS WIN 31-17!!!



The New Orleans Saints won Super Bowl XLIV over the Indianapolis Colts 31-14 behind game MVP quarterback Drew Brees.

And congrats to "Who Dat? Nation"....this one was bigger than just for a team; this was for a city and region that was devastated five years ago by Hurricane Katrina. This was about a city that came so close to losing their franchise after the SuperDome and the city were in ruins.

And they were a team that went decades without a winning record or a playoff appearance. They were so bad at one time their fans called them "The Ain'ts" and wore paperbags over their heads at home games.

Its party time at the game site in South Florida, and at Bourbon Street in "Nawlins".

Check out New Orleans Saints.com

Its a feel good story...and again, congrats to the Saints and their fans.

Palin Assails Obama at Tea Party Meeting - NYTimes.com



Sarah Palin, the former Governor of Alaska, addressed the members attending the Tea Party Convention in Nashville on Saturday night, picking up a nifty $100,000 speaking fee to hammer the President of the United States.

The 1,100 flagwaving populists in the crowd who want "to take back America" paid $549 each to attend the events. Another 500 persons paid $349 each to see Palin's speech alone.

Patriotism for profit.

What a concept!

Its called helping America to get back on its economic feet by filling your pockets first.


READ MORE....from NYTimes.com

Even more Tea Party coverage from Chris Cillizza and THE WASHINGTON POST

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Random Thoughts On "The Big Game"- Who Dem?

Well its that time....the National Football League will crown a new champion tomorrow night. And I suppose its my solemn duty as a semi-professional internet blogger type person to make some comments and give my pick for the game. OK folks....you didn't ask for it but here I come!

(1). I'm pretty damn sick about having to refer to this event as "The Big Game" since I'm not a licensee of the NFL, and for all I know I'll call it by the "SB" name and a small squadron of lawyers will be shaking me down for money I don't have. And the only reason they would do that is because the rack and debtor's prisons were phased out a couple of centuries ago.



(2) Above, we have Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts. If you've been living under a rock or something you might not have heard that he is the son of Archie Manning, who quarterbacked the New Orleans Saints when they weren't very good. Archie and wife Olivia are the head of the First Family of Football...they also have another son named Eli....you might have heard of him as well. But then again, you could be one of the those people who didn't know that because you watch only one game per year, and this is it. This Game (it must be capitalized to show the proper reverence) has  become an official- unofficial American holiday, and if you don't watch the Tea Baggers who live next door to you will question your Americanism and will ask for your birth certificate.

And then you'll really be sorry .

(3) Above and below.....gratuitous photos of the lovely cheerleaders of the New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts. No other reason for posting them other than they sure are purdy....and I can see their belly buttons on this frigid day in the Northeast.




(4) On the right....now that's a FAN. But how in God's name can he see the game?

(5). And another thing....what's this stuff about the NFL saying they own the copyright to the expression "Who Dat?", used by the New Orleans Saints fans? That makes about as much sense as a certain news organization saying they trademarked the expression "fair and balanced". Anyway, check this story about the NFL's clain of copyright infringement when the phrase is used in conjunction with the New Orleans Saints.

(6).The NFL is talking about playing a "Big Game" in the new Giants-Jets Stadium in East Rutherford New Jersey in the future. Ahhhhh....Commissioner Goodell?- parts of New Jersey got as much as 20 inches of snow today, on the eve of the "SB"...how can you expect geriatric classic rock bands to perform at halftime in those conditions? Oh yeah...there is a football game to be played as well.

(7). And speaking of halftime entertainment.....I loved The Who. They were my favorite performing rock band of alltime. But The Who will not be performing at "The Big Game"- Pete Townshend and Roger Daltry, and a bunch of hired hands will. Pete thought about folding the group after the death of Keith Moon. But Pete, Roger, and John Entwistle moved on, first with Kenny Jones, and with others, until John's death in 2002. Pete and Roger are the voice, the writer, the brain, and the guitar of The Who. But half of the group has left us....I wonder of Paul and Ringo could be performing as "The Beatles" next.

(8). How can we talk about the "Big Game" without mentioning the rise of OCNN, the Ochocinco News Network, which has made its presence felt in the covering of the "SB"? Founded by Chad Ochocinco OCNN also employs NFL players Chris Cooley, Darnell Dockett, and (former Rutgers great) Ray Rice as on site reporters....along with superfans Jake and Amir. Below, watch 'em do their stuff!


(9) Do you remember Mike Brown, the FEMA director at the time when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans and vicinity? The "You're doin' a great job there, Brownie" guy? Wouldn't you think he would at least pick the Saints to win the game just so it might help ease the city's pain just a little?

Well....Mike Brown didn't pick the Saints. And somehow I'm not surprised. Below, more on that, and what the President is doing on Sunday, and some other pertinent nonsense regarding El Juego Grande!!

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy


(10). In closing......take the COLTS to win the game 31-24. Indy will be hurting on defense because Dwight Freeney will be hobbling. But the Colts will just plug another guy in, which is their wont, and will get it done. Drew Brees and company have had a fine year and are the sentimental favorites to win. But yesterday I was listening to something former NFL executive Carl Peterson said during a radio interview. He was the GM of the Philadelphia Eagles when they went to the SB to play the Oakland Raiders. It was the first appearance for the Eagles, the third for the Raiders. The Eagles were a solid favorite in the game....and were beaten badly. Peterson said yesterday that the Eagles were in such a state of awe in being in a game of such magnitude, they froze up. Peterson indicated that would be the case for the Saints tomorrow.....and I think he's right.

Enjoy the game and your parties, everyone!

Correction Sunday Feb 7th, 11:00am. Guilty as charged! As originally posted I had the point about the NFL's charge of copyright infringement wrong. The correct phrase is "Who Dat?", not "Who Dey?". The second phrase is one used by Cincinnati Bengals fans. I wonder if there is a legal action pending for that one as well.

Snowstorm Blasts Mid Atlantic

No big news to anyone living from the New York Metro area to points west and south to Virginia, but its really snowing HARD in some areas as a type this. 

DC is expecting 2.5 feet, the Jersey Shore close to 2 feet....and unofficially I measured the snow in the backyard here in Central NJ (about 7 miles from Staten Island, NY, 50 from Bucks County, PA)....we're at about seven inches and counting, with snow falling at a rate of two inches an hour, but it seems to be lessening slightly. Zero visibility, heavy snow, and 35mph winds all along the Jersey Shore- its officially a blizzard

Oddly, there's only been a trace in New York City, and are expecting only two inches or less.

The storm should be out of here by evening.

Time to THINK about digging out, Phase One. And start the Super Bowl party a day earlier.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Former 2008 GOP Presidential Candidate Tancredo Opens Tea Party Convention



Former Congressman Tom Tancredo (R-Co) opened the first Tea Party Convention in Nashville with a slam against immigrants and the President of the United States.

He made the following statement at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center (from CNN.com)....

The former congressman from Colorado and 2008 Republican presidential candidate blasted President Obama, saying "people who could not even spell the word 'vote', or say it in English, put a committed socialist ideologue in the White House. His name is Barack Hussein Obama."

This isn't the first time this blog has spoken about the super patriotic Nativist Tancredo. Last year Tancredo stormed off the set while being a guest on MSNBC. Tancredo claimed to be insulted by DAILY KOS founder Markos Moulitsas on the show when Moulitsas mentioned that Tancredo asked for and received a draft deferrment during the Vietnam War. Tancredo was a Republican student activist who supported the war but did not serve because he told doctors he'd been treated for depression and received a "1-Y" draft deferment.

A few years ago Mr. Tancredo had this solution to ending the threat of terrorists attacks in the United States by Muslim extremists....bomb the Muslim Holy Cities of Mecca and Medina.



In the interest of full disclosure, I did serve in the military during the final two years of the Vietnam War. Also, I will tell you that while I served I did not see combat. That being said, I wouldn't mind Tom Tancredo and his draft deferment if he wasn't then, as he is now, such a pathetic hypocrite.

Another conservative Chicken Hawk, a cheerleader for others to risk their lives, kill or be killed....just as long as it isn't his sorry ass on the line.

With people like Mr. Tancredo, and the former Governor of Alaska as their shining stars, the Tea Bag Party are following the footsteps of another movement in American history.

The No-Nothings.

Jon Stewart "Into The Belly of The Beast"- He Appears On FOX NEWS With Bill O'Reilly



On HLN's Joy Behar Show Joy talks to panelists Lizz Winstead and Pete Dominick about The Daily Show's Jon Stewart's appearance on Fox News' "O'Reilly Factor" with host Bill O'Reilly.

A sample of Stewart's appearance with O'Reilly... JS-"You (O'Reilly) have become the voice of reason, which is like being the thinnest kid at FAT CAMP".

Bob Schieffer of CBS News Interviewed By WFAN's Mike Francesa



A couple of hours ago Mike Francesa of WFAN (New York) interviewed the host of Face The Nation, Bob Schieffer.

This was truly one of the more fascinating radio interviews I've ever heard. Mr. Schieffer was in Miami for CBS's Super Bowl coverage, and will be interviewing NFL commissioner Roger Goodell on Sunday along with play by play man Jim Nance.

When the talk came to Schieffer's career, it became spellbinding. Among the subjects he talked about were the nature of news media today, the toxic politics we live with now, his favorite public figures, his relationship with the late Walter Cronkite, and the first time he saw Lyndon Baines Johnson.

But the most interesting topic of all had to do with the events of November 22, 1963- the day John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Its the story of the young print reporter, Bob Schieffer and a phone call he got that day from a woman.

I won't spoil the story for you....

Click here for the recorded audio of the interview.

Be sure to mute the music playlist located in the left hand margin.

Amazing stuff...this guy really has become kind of a national treasure.
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