Right Thinking From The Left Coast
Freedom of Press is limited to those who own one - H.L. Mencken

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Kim’s Missile
by Lee

You know that useless missile defense shield that America’s left-wing asshats keep saying we don’t need?

North Korea is deploying new land- and sea-based ballistic missiles that can carry nuclear warheads and may have sufficient range to hit the United States, according to the authoritative Jane’s Defence Weekly.

In an article due to appear on Wednesday, Jane’s said the two new systems appeared to be based on a decommissioned Soviet submarine-launched ballistic missile, the R-27.

It said communist North Korea had acquired the know-how during the 1990s from Russian missile specialists and by buying 12 former Soviet submarines which had been sold for scrap metal but retained key elements of their missile launch systems.

Jane’s, which did not specify its sources, said the sea-based missile was potentially the more threatening of the two new weapons systems.

“It would fundamentally alter the missile threat posed by the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) and could finally provide its leadership with something that it has long sought to obtain—the ability to directly threaten the continental U.S.,” the weekly said.

This illustrates perfectly why taking out Iraq now was a prudent thing to do.  If we had waited 10 or 20 or 30 more years, eventually Saddam would have gotten ahold of a nuke, and we’d be dealing with this type of stalemate there as well.

Posted by Lee on 08/03/04 at 10:44 AM in War on Terror/Axis of Evil  • (7) TrackbacksPermalink

by Lee

And here we see the latest example of the Democrats’ view of America, a land where nobody is responsible for their own actions.

A local company is accused of towing first and asking questions later.

Tow Truck Company of Orlando impounded an SUV on Saturday night with 21-year-old Chris Richard passed out in the back seat.

Now his mother plans to file a lawsuit against the company.

The receptionist at the company talked to Eyewitness News through her bulletproof glass window. “The kid was passed out drunk in his car. I don’t know what to tell you,” she says.

But the boy’s mother feels differently. “My son was in the car for at least an hour and nobody knew. The windows were up. He could have suffocated in the car,” says Sherry Avery.

Perhaps your son shouldn’t have gotten so drunk that he passed out in his car.  Odd, isn’t it, that the danger of suffocation inside the car wasn’t a priority for the lad when he decided to go to sleep there, only when there was money to be made by filing a ridiculous lawsuit.

Posted by Lee on 08/03/04 at 10:22 AM in Decline of Western Civilization  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Taking Plans Seriously
by Lee

The world’s left-wing asshats are making a big deal about this revelation.

Much of the information that led the authorities to raise the terror alert at several large financial institutions in the New York City and Washington areas was three or four years old, intelligence and law enforcement officials said on Monday. They reported that they had not yet found concrete evidence that a terrorist plot or preparatory surveillance operations were still under way.

But the officials continued to regard the information as significant and troubling because the reconnaissance already conducted has provided Al Qaeda with the knowledge necessary to carry out attacks against the sites in Manhattan, Washington and Newark. They said Al Qaeda had often struck years after its operatives began surveillance of an intended target.

Taken together with a separate, more general stream of intelligence, which indicates that Al Qaeda intends to strike in the United States this year, possibly in New York or Washington, the officials said even the dated but highly detailed evidence of surveillance was sufficient to prompt the authorities to undertake a global effort to track down the unidentified suspects involved in the surveillance operations.

“You could say that the bulk of this information is old, but we know that Al Qaeda collects, collects, collects until they’re comfortable,’’ said one senior government official. “Only then do they carry out an operation. And there are signs that some of this may have been updated or may be more recent.’’

Frances Fragos Townsend, the White House homeland security adviser, said on Monday in an interview on PBS that surveillance reports, apparently collected by Qaeda operatives had been “gathered in 2000 and 2001.’’ But she added that information may have been updated as recently as January.

The next time you hear some idiot pointing to this story as “evidence” that the Bush administratiion is using terrorism to keep the public in a perpetual state of fear, remind them that the 9/11 attacks had been planned for five years before they toook place.  In other words, at one point we might have come across the 9/11 plans, and that information would have been three years old, but it would still be two more years until the attacks were to be carried out. 

I’ve been as big a critic of the color-code alert system as anyonee, but I think that what the government did in this instance was prudent and appropriate.

Posted by Lee on 08/03/04 at 08:52 AM in War on Terror/Axis of Evil  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Monday, August 02, 2004

Suite Sister Mary
by Lee

There’s a sequel planned for one of the greatest rock albums of all time.

Queenryche today released a statement confirming they are working on the sequel to Operation: Mindcrime for release in 2005 on Sanctuary Records. First reported earlier this year by dB Loss, Operation: Mindcrime 2 is the continuation of arguably the greatest concept album of all time (along with The Wall and Tommy, and has been on the top of most-wanted lists for years.

Selections from the new album will be played during the upcoming Fall 2004/Winter 2005 tour, along with the first complete performance of the original album in nearly fifteen years. Guitarist Mike Stone, who joined the band for their last release Tribe, is returning along with original members Geoff Tate, Michael Wilton, Eddie Jackson, and Scott Rockenfield. Pamela Moore will be returning for her Sister Mary role, and Michael Igor Delassandra will accompany on keyboards. Live actors and new video footage will be also be incorporated into the production.

Looks like we’ll finally learn who killed Mary…

Judas Priest and Black Sabbath on tour together, and now a sequel to Operation: Mindcrime?  It’s enough to make an old 80s metal guy’s head explode!

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 03:32 PM in Life & Culture  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Bums and Pigeons
by Lee

See if you, gentle reader, can spot the delicious irony in this article.

San Francisco police are cracking down on the illegal feeding of the city’s pigeon population.
The campaign began two weeks ago and is designed to reduce overpopulation and unsightly property damage.

Overfed female pigeons can breed as many as eight times a year, while healthy pigeons only breed two or three times.

The mayor and public works officials are encouraging residents to call police if they see people feeding pigeons.

Fines range from 45-dollars to as much as 300-dollars. But before authorities start handing out citations, the public works department is stepping up a public education campaign in English, Spanish and Chinese.

The health department says it gets hundreds of complaints a year about nuisance pigeons—which also can carry meningitis and salmonella.

The city of San Francisco is trying to cut down on its pigeon problem by fining people who feed the pigeons, the idea being that pigeons will naturally congregate where they can find a steady suppply of food.  Keeping the pigeon problem under control will cut down on disease and cost to the city, thus it is a goood idea. 

This is also the same city that gives bums $400 a month in free money and benefits, then wonders why they have streets full of disease-ridden, shitting-in-the-gutter, bathing-in-fountains, homeless vermin. 

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 01:00 PM in Cullyforneah  • (4) TrackbacksPermalink

The Worst Defense
by Lee

If you want a thumbnail primer or why John Kerry is totally weak on nationa security, you can’t do better than this interview with James Rubin, his senior foreign-policy adviser.

NEWSWEEK: Expectations are high that American foreign policy would change under a President Kerry. But it sounds like the goals—fighting terror and making America safer—are not that different. Is it a question of style or execution?

RUBIN: The difference, and this is the big and crucial difference, is that John Kerry, by virtue of his experience and his character and his wisdom, will be just as tough as George Bush in defeating Al Qaeda and Islamic extremist terrorists, but he will be a lot smarter in how he solicits the support of other countries. If elected, John Kerry will be sitting down with the leaders of our major friends and allies and demanding action. But he will do that in a way that expresses understanding for other people’s points of view, that involves listening and leading rather than alienating, and that involves old-fashioned persuasion and an appreciation for other cultures and values. The bullying of the Bush administration will come to an end.

Note that he hasn’t listed a single specific thing that Kerry would do differently.  He also doesn’t mention the fact that none of our “allies” have the ability to really be a lot of benefit to us at all, anyway.  Britain and Australia are our two closest allies when it comes to Iraq, but even their combined power couldn’t have matched what the US was able to do.  No matter how many “allies” (i.e. France and Germany) were against us, the fact remains that even with solid global support the dymanic in Iraq wouldn’t be all that much more different than it is now.

One of the findings of the 9/11 Commission concerns Iran and its alleged support for Al Qaeda. U.S.-Iranian policy has been in the deep freeze for 25 years. How is that going to change with Kerry?

John Kerry regards an Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism armed with nuclear weapons as unacceptable. He has a multiple-part strategy that is much more realistic than the Bush administration’s. One is to rejoin and work through the international legal framework on arms control. That will give greater force to the major powers if they have to deal with violators. Secondly, he has laid out, I think in the most comprehensive way in modern memory, a program to secure nuclear materials around the world—particularly in the former Soviet Union but also in the places where research reactors have existed that could be susceptible to proliferation. The point is to try to prevent Iran from ever getting this material surreptitiously. Thirdly, he has proposed that rather than letting the British, the French and the Germans do this themselves, that we together call the bluff of the Iranian government, which claims that its only need is energy. And we say to them: “Fine, we will provide you the fuel that you need if Russia fails to provide it.” Participating in such a diplomatic initiative makes it more likely to succeed.

So, in other words, all a rogue state has to do is threaten to develop nuclear weapons and the US will bend over and provide them with free energy?  This is how you deal with terrorism?  This is how you defend America?

Kerry can engage in all the blustering bellicosity he likes, but the fact remains that he’s solidly weak on national defense.  He always has been and always will be. 

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 10:46 AM in Election 2004  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Names and Cash
by Lee

Once again one of my predictions has come true.  About ten years ago I told a friend that one day airports would sell their naming rights to corporations just like sports arenas do, and that one day you’d fly into Starbucks International Airport somewhere.  Well, it looks like that dynamic has begun.

Facing what it says could be budget gaps of more than $1 billion in the coming years, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is exploring the sale of naming rights to its subway stations, bus lines, bridges and tunnels.

Officials quietly issued a formal request for proposals last month from marketing firms that they would charge with landing sponsorship deals that could include anything from renaming historic stations to attaching corporate monikers to building projects such as the long-awaited Second Avenue subway.

“On behalf of our San Francisco-based flight crew, I welcome you to the Bay Area, and Trojan Ribbed-For-His-Pleasure International Airport.  Please enter the terminal from the rear.”

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 10:29 AM in Decline of Western Civilization  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Tax Code Jesus
by Lee

If you ever want to see the liberal mindset in action, look right here.

In his speech at the convention, Bill Clinton delighted the crowd by complaining about the unnecessary tax cut he had received. At a breakfast with Florida delegates, the actor Ben Affleck got into specifics, explaining that the Bush tax cuts had provided him with $1 million last year that he didn’t need.

It was a smart strategy to please the faithful in Boston, but the protests may raise a question for some voters: If you think the government has a better use for the money, why not give it back? When The Nation urged readers to send their tax rebates to the magazine, the editors were criticized for hypocrisy: given their beliefs, shouldn’t they want those rebates to pay for public programs instead of remaining in the private sector?

We asked Mr. Affleck if he had considered sending the $1 million back to Washington. “No,” he said. “I’m not Jesus Christ of the tax code. I can’t completely martyr myself.”

This is the simple truth.  For all the preening and moralizing these asshat liberals do about tax breaks, the fact is that not one of them would ever give them up.  Sure, they’ll whine about it in public, about how they don’t deserve or need them, but actually voluntarily give them up?  Never!

If Affleck finds this money so offensive, why not give it to a charity?  How about “The Ben Affleck Breast Augmentation Center for Poor, Hot Chicks.” Or, why not start a foundation giving small business loans to minorities with lousy credit?  The possibilities of the amount of left-wing good that someone could do with $1 million are virtually endless, but Affleck would rather keep his filthy, ill-gotten lucre, all the while whining about having it.

Michael Moore, anyone?  I rest my case.

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 08:27 AM in Celebrity Idiots  • (2) TrackbacksPermalink

Reporting from the Left
by Lee

Are you sitting down?  Because when you read this you’re going to be shocked, shocked, shocked!

But do journalists really want John Kerry to defeat George W. Bush? It depends where they work and how you ask the question, at least according to the unscientific survey we conducted last weekend during a press party at the convention. We got anonymous answers from 153 journalists, about a third of them based in Washington.

When asked who would be a better president, the journalists from outside the Beltway picked Mr. Kerry 3 to 1, and the ones from Washington favored him 12 to 1. Those results jibe with previous surveys over the past two decades showing that journalists tend to be Democrats, especially the ones based in Washington. Some surveys have found that more than 80 percent of the Beltway press corps votes Democratic.

Yes, folks, you read that correctly.  Journalists are liberals!  Who knew?

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 08:20 AM in The Press Machine  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Tax Revolution
by Lee

Yesterday Drudge had an interesting claim from the GOP.

A domestic centerpiece of the Bush/GOP agenda for a second Bush term is getting rid of the Internal Revenue Service, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.

The Speaker of the House will push for replacing the nation’s current tax system with a national sales tax or a value added tax, Hill sources tell DRUDGE.

“People ask me if I’m really calling for the elimination of the IRS, and I say I think that’s a great thing to do for future generations of Americans,” Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert explains in his new book, to be released on Wednesday.

“Pushing reform legislation will be difficult. Change of any sort seldom comes easy. But these changes are critical to our economic vitality and our economic security abroad,” Hastert declares in SPEAKER: LESSONS FROM FORTY YEARS IN COACHING AND POLITICS.

““If you own property, stock, or, say, one hundred acres of farmland and tax time is approaching, you don’t want to make a mistake, so you’re almost obliged to go to a certified public accountant, tax preparer, or tax attorney to help you file a correct return. That costs a lot of money. Now multiply the amount you have to pay by the total number of people who are in the same boat. You can’t. No one can because precise numbers don’t exist. But we can stipulate that we’re talking about a huge amount. Now consider that a flat tax, national sales tax, or VAT would not only eliminate the need to do this, it could also eliminate the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) itself and make the process of paying taxes much easier.”

“By adopting a VAT, sales tax, or some other alternative, we could begin to change productivity. If you can do that, you can change gross national product and start growing the economy. You could double the economy over the next fifteen years. All of a sudden, the problem of what future generations owe in Social Security and Medicare won’t be so daunting anymore. The answer is to grow the economy, and the key to doing that is making sure we have a tax system that attracts capital and builds incentives to keep it here instead of forcing it out to other nations.”

Is this true?  Beats me.  On the one hand, it will be kind of hard for Hastert and the House GOP not to bring this to a vote now that it’s been written down and published.  On the other, this seems to me to smack of a standard election-year ploy.  Why should I think that the GOP would attempt anything this revolutionary, after the way they have upheld the supposedly Republican ideals of smaller government and discal discipline? 

This is the kind of thing I want the Republican Party to be doing.  I only hope they mean it.

Posted by Lee on 08/02/04 at 08:11 AM in Politics  • (1) TrackbacksPermalink

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Ghosts of McGovern
by Lee

As Ace Ventura might say, John Kerry is a lahoo-zaher.

The Democratic National Convention boosted voters’ perceptions of John Kerry’s leadership on critical issues, a USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup Poll finds. But it failed to give him the expected bump in the head-to-head race against President Bush.

In the survey, taken Friday and Saturday, the Democratic ticket of Kerry and John Edwards trailed the Republican ticket of Bush and Dick Cheney 50% to 46% among likely voters, with independent candidate Ralph Nader at 2%.

Before the convention, the two were essentially tied, with Kerry at 47%, Bush at 46%.

The change in support was within the poll’s margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points in the sample of 763 likely voters. But it was nonetheless a stunning result, the first time in the Gallup Poll since the 1972 Democratic convention that a candidate seemed to lose ground at his convention.

Allow me to remind you, gentle reader, what happened in 1972.

Posted by Lee on 08/01/04 at 12:46 PM in Election 2004  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink

Assholes and Styrofoam
by Lee

Yesterday’s Ozzfest was quite an experience.  This was my third time going to one of these shows, but it was my first time here at the Glen Helen Amphiteater, about an hour outside of Los Angeles.

We arrived at the show right as Lamb of God were starting, I could hear them on the second stage as we were walking in.  Once we made it up through the ticket pavillion we went to walk over to check out the show.  We walked in up over a hill to the open area where the second stage had been set up and discovered that the stage was completely obscured.  With what, you ask? 

Dust.  Plumes and clouds of roiling dust.  See, the area around the amphitheater is kind of like Arizona, dry desert with scrub brush.  So as soon as a band started all the guys down the front in the pit started thrashing and kicking up dust, so much so that it totally covered the stage.  If you were further than 20 feet away from the stage you couldn’t see anything.  So, while I was able to hear Lamb of God, Hatebreed, and Slipknot I never really got to see what kind of show they put on.  And there was no secondary amplification of the second stage, either, so the further away you were the worse it sounded.  Nonethess, all three of these bands sounded great, and I’ll go see any of them the next chance I get.

Posted by Lee on 08/01/04 at 11:12 AM in Life & Culture  • (0) TrackbacksPermalink
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