< link rel="DCTERMS.isreplacedby" href="http://www.sotr.us" >
Republic. I like the sound of the word. It means people can live free, talk free, go or come, buy or sell, be drunk or sober, however they choose. Some words can give you a feeling that makes your heart warm. Republic is one of those words. - John Wayne

Wednesday, August 31, 2005
 
The 21st Century Battlefield; Blogs Sold Separately
by Bonjo
Our friend BlackFive was mentioned in the following article about military blogging.

It's an interesting article, and discusses the risks associated with military personnel posting about their activities in a public forum. I was unaware that soldiers in Iraq are required to register their blogs with the powers that be.

I for one am appreciative of the perspective that our men and women in uniform are able to share. Their security, however, must be the first priority so I applaud those who are judicious in deciding what to post. When they get back from war, we can take them out to dinner and hear the rest of the details!
 
Manufactured Grief
by Cordeiro
The saying goes that a picture can say 1,000 words. Well, it helps if its not cropped to look like something it's not.

Here is what the media would like to have you believe is a picture of Cindy Sheehan, Al "Slim Shady" Sharpton, and hundreds of sympathetic people gathered in prayer.


The Media Picture


And here is a picture of the actual sympathetic people gathered at this war protest masquerading as a vigil:


The Actual Picture


Talk about close cropping. The Rent-A-Mob crowd must've been out to lunch.

HT: Little Green Footballs
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
 
Guilt Trip In Lower Manhattan
by Cordeiro
As a younger man, I spent two years living and working in Brazil. During that time, I worked very hard to learn the Portuguese language and immerse myself in the Brazilian culture. I grew to love both the people and the culture of that great land. Not to be boastful, but my linguistic ability became so developed that I was often accused of not being an American. Some people were astonished when they found out that I was, in fact, a true to life Gringo.

Towards the end of my stay in Sao Paulo, a good friend sat me down in his living room and gave me a set of headphones. "Cordeiro, I think you'll like this," he said. So I donned the headphones and listened. What came out of the speakers was the unmistakable sound of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing The Star Spangled Banner.

For those of you musically challenged readers, that's the National Anthem of the United States of America.

It had been two years since I had heard that song, and despite my absence from any and all things American, hearing the anthem of my nation made me emotional. It was then that I realized that, no matter where I lived or what language or culture I immersed myself in, I was, am, and always will be an American.

So when I caught this piece in the New York Daily News via Take Back The Memorial it made me angry. It seems that a "global network of human rights museums is urging the International Freedom Center to downplay America in its exhibits and programs at Ground Zero".

Now, lets get some facts straight:
  1. The attacks perpetrated by Islamofacist murdering bloodthirsty thugs took place in Lower Manhattan. For those of you geographically challenged readers, Lower Manhattan is a part of the City and County of New York which just happens to be part of the State of New York. The State of New York is part of the United States of America. Manhattan is not an island off the eastern coast of France.
  2. The vast majority of the 3,000 people who were crushed, incinerated, and otherwise liquidated on September 11, 2001 were citizens of the United States of America.
  3. The September 11th memorial will be built on American soil, using American resources, and memorializing a terrorist act perpetrated on the American people.
Here are some excerpts from the conference report given to Philip Kunhardt, the Freedom Center's editorial director. Its title is Bringing Conscience to Ground Zero. According to the coalition members the memorial should:

Help distinguish between American people and the U.S. government in exhibits.

Use reports from human rights organizations to examine contemporary abuse of rights.

Use the museum as a venue for international meetings, where all views are welcomed and considered.
Translation - the International Freedom Center should be made available for people like Usama bin Laden, Mohammed Atta, and the Counsel for American Islamic Relations to tell anyone within earshot just how terrible America is.

Sure, go right ahead. And while you're at it, put a statue of Hanoi Jane Fonda between some Vietnam era graves at Arlington.

The report also expresses some concerns:

It seems that whatever Americans want, Americans get! Is the definition of the 'struggle for freedom' simply defined by the victors, or also by those engaged in ongoing struggles? Will Americans really create a balanced vision of freedom.
Being that the memorial is in America, about Americans, and built by Americans, yes, we get what we want. And yes, victors write the history and therefore define what freedom is. If your country had won a war in the past 200 years, you'd know that by now.

The WTC was attacked because it was a symbol of power and influence. In building the Freedom Tower, the U.S. reasserts its power in an arrogant way: Does this mean the U.S. will not only build the biggest building, but also define freedom for the world?
And you would have us do what? Build a smaller tower and plead with the Islamofacist thugs not to fly a plane into it again? You and people like you see any assertion of power as a show of arrogance. So, yes, we will build something that both honors the people who died there and also honors what they were doing there - pursuing life, liberty and happiness. We will build it tall, proud, and yes just a little bit arrogant. And no, we're not sorry if that offends you.

This so called "International Freedom Center" has no place within 100 miles of Ground Zero - unless that 100 miles is due east and thus someplace in the Atlantic ocean. Common courtesy, respect, and honor for those who were murdered on that day dictate the behavior and comments such a center would promote would be wholly inappropriate to that hallowed ground.

Here endeth the lesson.
 
Draft Letter from President Bush to Cindy Sheehan
by Bonjo
If you don't follow Scott Ott (Scrappleface.com), you might have missed this. It's mostly devoid of Ott's wry humor, but illustrates an excellent point regarding the freedoms that Mrs. Sheehan is excercising, but does not feel other people deserve.

President Bush's Response to Cindy Sheehan
 
This Week's Sign The Apocalypse Is Upon Us
by Cordeiro
Timken High School in Canton, Ohio (home to the NFL Hall of Fame) has a female population of 490.

65 of that female population currently find themselves "in a family way".

Published media reports that

School officials are not sure what has contributed to so many pregnancies...
Perhaps said school officials need to re-take freshman biology.
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
 
Salt Lake City Mayor Channels Howard Dean
by Cordeiro
An Open Letter to Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson:

Dear Sir:

Yesterday (August 22, 2005) was a first for me. It was the first time in my life I have ever been ashamed to list Salt Lake City among the many places I consider home. I have deep familial roots in the Salt Lake Valley. I count among my forbearers those who crossed the plains and turned what was a desert into a thriving, prosperous land. I have spent several years of my life in this fine city and even had the privilege of attending school not far from downtown. Much of my family still lives in or around Salt Lake City.

Many people, no doubt yourself included, have worked very hard to bolster the image of Salt Lake City around the world. I have no doubt the people whose job it is to attract conventions, tourists, and other visitors to Salt Lake City do a fine job of promoting the area as one of the premier destinations in the western United States.

Some people might not consider a convention of the Veteran's of Foreign Wars to be a big deal. I do not count myself among those people. These men and women have struggled and sacrificed in order that people like you might live as you like and do as you choose. These honored veterans deserve, if nothing else, respect.

This same courtesy and respect should and ought to be extended to the Commander in Chief of the United States Armed Forces. He's commonly referred to as the President of the United States. I can understand if you're not too familiar with him. He's only visited Salt Lake City twice during his presidency.

Most American Mayors are honored to have the opportunity to welcome the President to their city. Even if they hate the man's guts (as you obviously do), they extend to his office the courtesy and respect reserved for the Leader of the Free World.

They do not organize rage filled, hate spewing protests to greet his visit.

Your job as mayor, sir, is to promote your city. What you should have done was welcome W to Salt Lake City, not protest his visit. Private citizens can do that. You, sir, are a public official. Your use of your office to organize an anti-war and obviously anti-Bush protest is reprehensible and an obvious abuse of your office. You, sir, should be ashamed of yourself.

But I know you're not. I heard your diatribe on KSL. You've obviously memorized the Moveon.org talking points and studied the playbook written by Howard Dean. Your best efforts to organize a protest resulted in some 1,000 people gathering at Pioneer Park to shout obscenities and wave middle fingers and otherwise vent their collective spleen.

Congratulations, Rocky. You've had your Fifteen Minutes. Perhaps when you realize the cost in tourism, conventions, and visitors that choose not to use Salt Lake City as a destination, you'll understand just how much those Fifteen Minutes cost you.

It just too bad you had to tarnish the image of an entire city to get yourself on the evening news.

Here endeth the lesson.

* Yes, I know the Salt Lake Tribune reported the crowd number to be roughly 2,500. Sorry, guys, but I think you take your crowd counting skills from Louis Farrakan and Randi Rhodes.
Monday, August 22, 2005
 
GUEST POST: Israeli Disengagement from an Israeli Point of View
by Bonjo
We're pleased to present a much anticipated guest post from Honorary SOTR, and Israeli dad, AbbaGav. For those of you who don't know AbbaGav, his wit, humor and concise point of view are a must-read. With many thanks to our friend for his time and insight!

*********

I'd like to thank the Sons of the Republic for offering me the chance to represent the Israeli viewpoint on disengagement. I doubt I actually represent the typical Israeli viewpoint, and will probably only succeed in angering the 50% of Israelis to my left, and the other 50% of Israelis to my right (yes, I do think I am in the precise, mathematical middle). But since contracting the blogging virus earlier this year I've become consitutionally incapable of keeping my opinions to myself, so I'm not going to let that get in my way.

Let's start by being clear that by disengagement I'm not referring to the end of the Affleck-Lopez media juggernaut. Disengagement here refers to Israel's unilateral removal of approximately 8,000 of its citizens from their homes in Gaza. The withdrawal did not have to be unilateral. Israel has been trying to negotiate a transfer of Gaza, along with other disputed land, to a nearly-nascent Palestinian state for quite awhile, stopped so far only by the Palestinian leadership's unwillingness to accept it. Yasser Arafat rejected Ehud Barak's offer of ninety-something percent of Palestinian demands -- not counting the demand for Israel's complete demise -- with 4 years of Intifada as the only counter-offer.

This left Israel's leadership with some big decisions. Ariel Sharon has decided to withdraw from Gaza, even without a partner. The full details of his reasoning are known possibly only to himself. Most Israelis nevertheless have their opinions on the various risks and rewards inherent to the plan, but since there is so much uncertainty and so many variables and possible outcomes, few agree fully on what disengagement means, other than two relatively monolithic clusters of opinion gathered about the two extremes.

The first clear point of view is that Israel should never surrender land promised by God, the so-called Greater Israel which includes Gaza within the biblical borders of the Kingdom of Israel. The second viewpoint is that Israel should cede just about anything that might buy it a little quiet, up to and including all of Jerusalem, except maybe the night clubs and the soccer stadium. You might be able to guess that my opinion resides somewhere in between those two. The mass of opinions in this muddy middle vary by how they prioritize and evaluate some key questions. To clarify these opinions, and my own, here is a "FAQ" of questions I frequently ask myself. Of course, the answers are only my own, and if you ask other Israelis, I can almost guarantee you they will disagree with me, one way or another.

Isn't disengagement just a retreat that will convince the terrorists their violence is working and encourage them to attack even more?
If every repositioning of forces on a battlefield is considered a retreat, then it would be fair to use that characterization. But the very term disengagement is used by that segment of Israeli opinion that considers this move a strategic repositioning of resources, and in that sense it is more than just a rhetorical euphemism for retreat. There is a lot of disagreement about what exactly the strategy might be behind the repositioning, but that is detail.

Nevertheless, most Palestinians, especially those inclined to the use of suicide belts, will call it a retreat. As such, regardless of what Israelis call it, disengagement will almost certainly improve terrorist morale, and increase their desire to attack Israel even more.

So then why wouldn't you oppose disengagement with every ounce of your strength?
An increase in terrorists' desire to attack Israel isn't necessarily the end of the world. It is easy to fall into a static-analysis trap, forgetting that the terrorists are not the only ones allowed to act after disengagement. Sharon has shown the will to fight back in the past, so it is not unreasonable to assume he will hit back again. Presumably he prefers the field of battle after disengagement, and Israelis have to hope he is right.

But more importantly, an increase in desire to attack does not guarantee an increase in ability to attack. Have we forgotten the assassination of Sheik Yassin? The whole world, and especially the terrorists, warned that Sharon had opened the Gates of Hell. Israel waited and waited as Hamas and its apologists ranted about their desire for apocalyptic revenge. Then a month or two later Yassin's successor, Rantissi, was assassinated too. Well, if you thought Sharon had opened the Gates of Hell before, now he'd opened them wider. Nevertheless, nothing ever happened. Oh eventually a street was named after each of them, and some firebombs were thrown at some jeeps in their honor. But vigorous Israeli measures kept the terrorists' desire to kill from turning into the ability to kill. The same is possible now.

But doesn't disengagement weaken the military position, allowing rocket launchers to approach that much closer to major targets, and surrendering the chance for any on-the-ground intelligence?
I am not a general, but I'm told Israel is full of them, and that Sharon even was one a long, long time ago, so I leave the details in their hands. They could be wrong. They aren't even fully in agreement amongst themselves. Perhaps it really is impossible to deter a murderous desire of this magnitude, but I'm willing to give Sharon the chance.

Rocket launchers can be taken out with missiles. Territory can be reconquered, either temporarily or permanently. Borders can be closed and future negotiations derailed. And while old options remain despite new challenges, new options are created by the absence of Israeli civilians on and near the battlefield. A few rules will change, but the game will remain the same.

Won't the Egyptian border, or an airport or seaport, open opportunities for the import of advanced weapons and foreign terrorist groups like Hizbullah and Al Qaeda to enter the Gaza picture?
Yes. That risk already exists with the Egyptian tunnels under Rafah. But if the free, uninspected movement of goods and people is allowed, it will certainly create risks. This is where one has to count on the Prime Minister to have a spine buried somewhere inside that bulky suit of his. Since this is a unilateral action, he must remain steadfast that no such rights have been assigned to the Palestinians in the absence of negotiations.

Can Israel afford disengagement -- the cost of resettling the evacuees, moving the military bases, and having to prepare for various future potential risks?
Certainly without any backing from the US some Israeli taxpayers will feel the sting. Perhaps this can affect growth by a percent or two -- not that I'm an economist, or that an economist would really even know. But for a country that has already weathered 4 years of Intifada, this should be tolerable.

One must also not evaluate the economic impact of a particular choice by comparing its result against the previously prevailing conditions, but by comparing it to what would have been expected as a result of the other available choices, if only theoretically. Doing nothing was by no means a guarantee of economic conditions continuing as they were. Complications include the cost of protecting the settlements and risks of international sanction in the face of longterm inaction.

Is this the first unilateral disengagement? Or the last?
If it is only the first of a series of unilateral disengagements, that will be quite bad. It will be remembered as only the first knee touching the ground in what would eventually be the fall of the body Israel.

If it is followed by more "disengagement", but not unilaterally so, then there can be some promise, depending of course on the as-yet unknown details of the negotiations. It's hard to believe anything like that could happen in the near future given the complete lack of trust between the parties, but maybe someday.

Unless there is already some agreement for the future already in place, not even Ariel Sharon can know for sure what the answer is to this question. But I would hope his inclination, at least, is to resist pressure for further unilateral withdrawals and concessions until the Palestinians act on the promises they've yet to meet, especially regarding dismantling terrorists groups and stopping incitement.

Can a moral government uproot its own citizens, especially after the price those citizens have paid, having moved into Gaza with the government's encouragement to begin with?
There are a lot of Israelis who support the government's right to move the settlers even as they acknowledge the risks and the price being paid. It is possible to acknowledge the pain of people being taken from their homes, even with compensation, and still feel the benefits are worth it. That opinion runs the risk of labeling one as anything from insensitive to non-Jewish. But if a government is sovereign enough to move them in, it should be sovereign enough to move them out, especially if it fulfills its obligation to treat them as fairly and generously as possible in the process.

So you are pro-disengagement then?
What's with all the labels? I'd have a hard time calling myself either pro- or anti-disengagement. I think it might be a little like the rhetorical attempts to label all Americans as pro-choice or pro-life or anti-abortion or anti-baby -- when in fact a lot of Americans support the right to abortion, but wish it weren't exercised much. One can be willing to disengage, yet remain fully cognizant of the price, and cautious regarding the risks.

So with all this discord and disagreement, is there anything Israelis agree on here?
I believe so. A bit of fringe rhetoric notwithstanding, I believe the vast majority of Israelis remain united behind Zionist ideals. There have always been arguments about the precise details of what they include, and how they should be fought for, but I do not believe this episode is the death knell of Zionism. I believe Israelis, settler and soldier alike, will be united as they face what comes after disengagement, further challenges from Palestinian terror, and especially as the Iranian nuclear threat looms closer on the horizon.

This is not the time to go wobbly, and I don't think we will.

*********
 
Second Tier Mayor Gets 5 Seconds of Fame
by Bonjo
Rocky Anderson, the thick-headed mayor of Salt Lake City, and someone that I personally voted against a few years back, is seizing upon an opportunity to put himself and his liberal agenda in the national spotlight. In response to President Bush's visit to the state, Rocky has called for an anti-war protest which will undoubtedly bring out the unemployed, the unshowered and the non-deoderized of his city. We hope all 6 of them have a nice time at their protest, while President Bush receives a warm welcome from the other fine citizens of Utah. Rocky will be lauded by his small, fiercely loyal, inner-city base of Democrats, and the rest of the state will collectively yawn at their antics.

UPDATE: Anderson was booed as he addressed the VFW Convention in Salt Lake City. Who on earth invited Rocky to their convention to begin with? I'd boo that person as well.

After sounding the cry to organize the "the biggest demonstration this state has ever seen", in response to President George W. Bush's visit to the convention, an estimated 100 people are protesting near the Salt Palace Convention Center. Even if we assume that half of those people are NOT journalists and cameramen, it would appear Rocky's ever-capricious tone has fallen on deaf ears.
 
Bush, Sheehan, and a Salt Lake TV Station
by Bonjo
Momma Sheehan has been running ads in Salt Lake City, in advance of President Bush's visit to the state today.

One station, however, refused to run the ads citing that the content would be offensive to the residents of Salt Lake City. KTVX television recognizes the sacrifice that many Utahns have paid by serving the military in Iraq.

Utah carried President Bush by 70% last fall. KTVX understands its customer base, and has made a wise decision to stay away from the Sheehan ads. If you've ever visited Salt Lake, you may have noticed that KTVX Channel 7 is one of the hardest stations to tune in. For some reason their signal is equally poor throughout the Salt Lake and Utah Valleys. KTVX's decision to not air this petty tripe from Momma Sheehan, however, is one signal that came through loud and clear.

I now return to my adventures in capitalism.
Friday, August 19, 2005
 
Calvin & Hobbes Explain Clinton Foreign Policy
by Cordeiro









Originally published May 17, 1992.











Thursday, August 18, 2005
 
Freedom Must Be Earned
by Bonjo
To appreciate and value something, we must earn it ourselves.

What is the end game in Iraq? What is our timetable for pulling out our troops? Just ask the Iraqis.

Growing up, I would often mention to my father how "So-and-so's dad just bought him a new car." This type of conversation typically occurred over dinner. Dad's reply was swift, and repeatedly the same: "So-and-so's dad sells drugs." It was never in the purview of my father to buy a car for his children, nor pay for their insurance. As a result, we got jobs, worked, bought cars and paid our own insurance.

Because of that, I learned the realities of automobile ownership. The maintenance costs, the operating costs, the liability costs. I knew I had worked hard in order to purchase the car, and thus I continued to work in order to maintain what I had already purchased. I never raced my car, I never drove it over terrain where it wasn't designed to be driven--I knew what it had cost me, and I was going to protect my investment.

The same principle applies to liberty. I recently perused "1776", a book by David McCullough. It recounts in excruciating detail numerous battles and setbacks encountered in America's struggle for independence from England. The struggles and hardships born by those early Americans often required them to sacrifice all that they had, including their lives, in order to earn what they wanted: liberty and independence from tyranny.

Now in our day and age, we are witnessing the struggle for democracy in Iraq. Some portions of the equation remain the same: a great cost has been paid, and in order to securely establish democracy, more sacrifice will be required. Once the liberty and independence of Iraq have been established, more sacrifice will be required in order to maintain the same.

There is one key difference, however. No one came into the American colonies and offered to fight the war for us. No one supplied the American militias with ammunition, uniforms, or combat training. No one but the Americans themselves bore the financial burden of waging a war against tyranny.

There were certainly setbacks for the Cause. Disease, desertion, lost battles, scarce resources and low morale all made their appearances. But in the end, the faith of the leaders and the will of the people prevailed.

Today, America is paying the price for Iraq's freedom. We have the resources to do so, and thus, I believe we have a responsibility to carry the flame of liberty to all the world. However, in order for Iraqis to appreciate and value their independence--and be willing to accept the responsibilities thereof--they too must pay the price. Freedom cannot be given to them pre-paid, packaged and delivered. Liberty is much too valuable to squander while someone else foots the bill. Iraqis themselves must step up to the plate, they must work and make the payments, and they must truly want and earn what liberty can afford.

There will undoubtedly be setbacks along the way. There will be doubts, there will be lives lost, and there will be no shortage of critics. Just as we live under the Constitution of the United States--and not the Articles of Confederation--we should understand that the Iraqi people may not decide on a flawless governing document on their first attempt. However, if the will of the Iraqi people is to seek after and establish democracy, then it will only be a matter of time before they succeed.

Until that happens, the U.S. will be there by necessity. If it never happens, the Iraqis will have squandered a precious opportunity and will have dismissed as naught the sacrifice of countless Americans. The future of Iraq is in the hands of the Iraqi people, as we stand by waiting for them to take the reins.

With that, I return to my adventures in capitalism.
 
Rage Thinly Veiled By Grief
by Cordeiro
The seemingly unending coverage of Cindy Sheehan's ditch side vigil in Crawford, Texas is beginning to wear on most people. Although I am hesitant to criticize the grieving mother of a fallen soldier, I've taken about all I can take from this woman.

She is using the death of her son as a medium by which to amplify her leftist rage. There is simply no other way to look at the situation.

Drudge today has an excerpt of a speech given by Sheehan at San Francisco State University on April 27, 2005. I would cite Ms. Sheehan here, but this is a PG rated blog and her profanity laced diatribe would be unintelligible if I were to censor it. Even uncensored her comments make little sense to anyone with more than six brain cells.

I am not alone in my disgust. In today's Wall Street Journal Mr. Ronald R. Griffin entitled She Does Not Speak For Me. He lost his son, Kyle, in Iraq also. I commend it for your reading. Also check out Matt Margolis' latest detailing reactions of others who have interacted with W as he attempts to comfort them in their grief.

I find it interesting that, while giving full coverage to Sheehan's ditch side vigil, no mention is made in the MSM of those who feel that she is dishonoring not only her son's memory, but also those who serve and have fallen.
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
 
Captain Sherman Powell, United States Army
The Matt Lauer Smackdown

by Cordeiro
It is with great pride that I tip my hat and give my best Hooaah! to Captain Sherman Powell, United States Army, currently serving a grateful nation at Camp Liberty in Baghdad. He gave the verbal equivalent of a smackdown to NBC's Matt "Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow" Lauer about the current state of MSM reporting related to Iraq, Afghanistan, and the GWOT in general. Here's the exchange as quoted by NewsBusters (HT - Blackfive):

Lauer: Don't get me wrong, I think you're probably telling the truth, but there might be a lot of people wondering how that could be possible with the conditions you're facing and with the insurgent attacks you're facing. What would you say to those people who are doubtful that morale could be that high?

Captain Sherman: Well, sir, I'd tell you, if I got my news from the newspapers also I'd be pretty depressed as well!"
Video clips of the exchange are available at Newsbusters.

Well said, Captain. Thank you for explaining the obvious to the intellectually challenged Lauer.
 
Brother, Can You Spare A Gulfstream V?
by Cordeiro
Normally, I'm content to leave the job of detailing the slow, painful, and obvious collapse of Air America Radio in the very capable hands of Captain Ed, Michelle Malkin, and Brian Mulroney. However, every so often I come across a detail that I just can't pass up writing about.

Randi Rhodes, an AAR airtime filler, feels the urgent need to visit her kindred spirits in Crawford. Yes, this is the same Randi Rhodes who came up with the brilliant idea of using the sound of gunshots to get her point across to W about Social Security. So urgent is her desire to do so she sent the following memo to her superiors (HT Radioequalizer):

From: Randi Rhodes
To: D G , G K
Sent: Sun Aug 14 12:04:19 2005

Hi D/G

D

There are two to three thousand people currently in Crawford!!. It started with 12 people! B estimates 90% are Randi listeners from all over the country!

Steve Earle is very popular in Crawford! I want to go and do my show live next Friday from Camp Casey. It's a hard remote but I can try to figure it out with G. I'm thinking about the details now...

D, Do you think Steve Earle would perform next Friday night or Saturday?

Also, transporation is an issue, because it will take me a whole day to travel. I don't want to miss a day on the air, and lose momentum. Flight to Dallas, on to Waco and then to Craford by car. So I was hoping that someone in the company would let me use their jet? I could take Steve with me and leave after Thursday's show.

B needs an extra cell phone asap. He's giving out his personal number to strangers.

A sleepy summer has turned into Woodstock!!

Need lot's of help now.

Love ALLways,
Randi
Seems that Randi took the same crowd counting class as Louis Farrakan. If there are 3,000 people in Crawford, 2,850 of them are reporters who really wish they had the same gig as FOX's Greta Van Sustern. You have to hand it to Randi. At least she wants to be where 90% of her audience is.

Her naivete is truly stunning. Somehow she expects a company who is trying to figure out how to repay a shady, ill advised, and quite possible illegal 875 large "loan" to come up with a private jet to shuttle her to preside over a media driven circus in central Texas.

Eventually, the fact a meeting of Randi's listeners couldn't fill the Crawford coffee shop is going to catch up with AAR - and none to soon.

Here endeth the lesson.

PS - Memo to Randi - Find an email program that checks your spelling.
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
 
Iraq's Constitutional "Crisis"
by Cordeiro
The MSM, with a stunning lack of anything else to report except the whinings of overheated camping protestors in Texas, has also taken to decrying the delay in the final version of the Iraqi constitution.

Its been a long time since a nation had to put together a document which will then become the supreme law of that land. Many nations have tried - some have been more successful than others.

I, for one am very glad today's MSM was not around to cover the Constitutional Convention of 1787 held in Philadelphia. I wonder what they would have written about the delays during that convention. What would they have thought about the dueling plans put forth in that room so many years ago. My guess is they would have written off the fledgling nation before the ink was dry on the document by which we are governed today.

There are disagreements as to what should be included in the Iraqi constitution and what should be left out. I'm sure the debates are sometimes heated. Add the tenuous security situation to the blinding sand storms which masquerade as weather fronts, and I believe a strong case can be made to cut the Iraqi constitutional drafters a little slack.

This message is brought to you by the Iraqi Ministry of Sand. Sand. Its everywhere. Get used to it.

Here endeth the lesson.
Monday, August 15, 2005
 
SOTR In Search Of Spokesmodel
by Cordeiro
The SOTR finds themselves in search of Spokesmodel to support the continuing capitalistic endevors of this blog. This individual will be highlighted as the SOTR launches their logo and T-shirt program

Interested parties (preferably of the female gender) should contact the SOTR at TheSOTR AT Gmail DOT com. If you can't figure out how to translate that to email code, perhaps you shouldn't be applying in the first place.

We look forward to hearing from you.
 
Newsweek Flash - Bush Not A Monster!
by Cordeiro
By way of Hedgehog and Michelle Malkin today.

Newsweek's Holly Bailey and Evan Thomas have made a stunning discovery - W has feelings. He's not an aloof frat boy unaware of the consequence of sending somebody's father, mother, son, or daughter into harm's way.

Most of the MSM (Ms. Bailey and Mr. Thomas excluded for the time being) would have you believe that W keeps himself at a comfortable distance from the families of those who have given the last full measure of devotion as a result of orders he signed.

For those of you rather dim bulbs, yes, I'm talking about Cindy Sheehan and her merry band of pacifist anti-war protesters down in Crawford.

Whether you agree with the decisions leading up to the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq or not, the charge that W avoids dealing with the grieving families of the fallen hold's about as much water as the colander I use to strain spaghetti. The death of a loved one brings out raw emotion in the best of human beings. Personally, I think I'd rather be shot at than have to face the mother of a fallen soldier that I placed in harm's way. The fact that W does this time after time is a testament to his fortitude. Despite their obvious bias, the Newsweek story does eventually get this point across.

As for Mrs. Sheehan, I can say but this: If for some reason I am ever sent to do battle for this nation and my life is lost in that process, Mother Cordeiro knows better than to sully my memory by camping out in the Texas desert and heckling a man whose job is hard enough.

Here endeth the lesson.
Saturday, August 13, 2005
 
Waitress Sandwich Kennedy Dodd Style
by Bonjo
Please update your links, the Kennedy-Dodd Waitress Sandwich Information Clearinghouse has moved to: http://sonsoftherepublic.blogspot.com/2005/08/kennedy-dodd-waitress-sandwich.html






Chris Dodd, recalling the good old days.

One of the search terms that frequently brings visitors to the SOTR is "kennedy dodd waitress sandwich". Somehow our lowly blog has become the Internet repository for information on Ted Kennedy, Chris Dodd and an unsuspecting waitress at La Brasserie (a restaurant near Capitol Hill in Washington, DC). Some accounts put this event at The Monocle, another DC restaurant. For all we know, it happened at both establishments--and who's to say similar antics didn't occur at many others. Therefore, let it be established that the two senators were at a restaurant.

So to satisfy everyone's curiosity, we offer the following, compiled from various sources:

In 1985, Dodd and fellow Senator Ted Kennedy were out (with dates) for a night on the town at La Brasserie. Much liquor was consumed--that will come as a shock to those of us familiar with Ted Kennedy--and the two Senators were at one point unaccompanied by their dates. The Senators made a "Waitress Sandwich" out of some poor, unsuspecting waitress.

If you're not entirely sure what that means, let's just say you wouldn't want to be the waitress.


Article clip, from the Hartford Courant:

"Dodd and Kennedy were also reported to have made a 'human sandwich' with a waitress at La Brasserie, another Capitol Hill restaurant. The report had it that Kennedy threw the woman on Dodd, who was slumped in a chair, and then jumped on top of her. She was said to have run screaming from the room."


Summary of 1989 Penthouse magazine article, summarized by the Washington Times:

"When she put in an appearance in their private retreat - 'The Teddy Kennedy Fun Room' - the Massachusetts senator picked her up and heaved her onto a table. The crystal candlesticks and champagne glasses shattered as he grabbed her again and flung her on top of Dodd.

"Then Kennedy threw himself on top of the woman. The waitress implored Mr. Kennedy to 'Get off me!'

"Another waitress entered to find 'things all tipped over and Kennedy was on top, [the waitress] was in the middle and Dodd was on the bottom.' At that point the sandwich was disassembled."


Related: DC "Waitress Sandwich Shop" Shutters Doors
Washington Post, August 5, 2005

La Brasserie, a French restaurant on Capitol Hill, closed last month, after a 27-year history of catering to political bigwigs and Hollywood A-listers.

"It was quite a Hill institution," said Lynne Breaux, executive director of the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, who has eaten there several times. "It was a lovely restaurant."

La Brasserie was located in a town house on Massachusetts Avenue Northeast. It served such politicos as the late Sen. Daniel Moynihan, New York Democrat, former Vice President Al Gore and the late Rep. Sonny Bono, California Republican, as well as actors like Jimmy Stewart, Paul Newman and Jane Fonda, [and who could forget Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd making unique contributions to our sandwich menu] said Lynne Campet, a former co-owner of the restaurant.

"A lot of important people dined there," she said.

Mrs. Campet and her husband, Raymond, bought the restaurant in 1978 with Gaby and Marie Aubouin. At the time, it was a Greek-owned restaurant called Maxim's and previously a cafe called La Ruche.

Mr. Campet and Mr. Aubouin, who worked at the French Embassy together, built the restaurant into a neighborhood favorite. The outdoor patio was "very special," Mrs. Campet said, adding that diners sought the tables under the property's big tree.

The 2003 Zagat Survey, which rates restaurants in different markets, said La Brasserie's terrace "transports one to Paris."

The French-inspired menu included such items as the cold three pepper soup, crabmeat and mozzarella lasagna, homemade tarts and creme brulee.

In 1992, the restaurant was sold to sisters Audrey and Karinne Dequeker, who could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Thursday, August 11, 2005
 
Pimping a Cause
by Cordeiro
Its hard to be an anti-war activist these days. The American people won't tolerate anybody dissing their troops. Leftists these days are having a very hard time finding a platform from which to attack W as Commander in Chief and, by proxy, the military which they really loathe.

Enter Cindy Sheehan, mother of Specialist Casey Sheehan, United States Army, who was killed in action in Iraq last year. She has been camped outside the Western White House in a vigil she says will end either with W's vacation or a personal visit with W to "discuss the war".

I will not use this space to disparage the actions of Ms. Sheehan. I will not use her grief as a platform upon which to air my opinions.

The MSM and the visceral leftists at places like Moveon.org are not nearly as principled. They are using the death of Spc. Sheehan as a platform from which to shout their anti-war, and more specifically Anti-W rage.

Such transparent pimping of a cause is shameful.

Here endeth the lesson.
 
George Will vs. Jimmy "Sir Robin" Carter
by Cordeiro
Former President Jimmy "Sir Robin" Carter evidently never got the memo explaining you don't argue with people who buy ink by the barrel.

Carter was defeated by Ronaldus Magnus (Reagan for those of you unfamiliar with history) in a landslide election which has yet to be repeated. 42 states told Jimmy it was time to go back to Georgia and grow peanuts. After so many years of reflection, who does Carter blame for his stunning defeat?

George Will - Washington Post columnist and ABC News contributor.

Will details the back and forth between himself and Carter regarding a briefing book Carter alleges Will stole from the Carter campaign and provided to the Reagan campaign. This, not Carter's complete ineptness and the fact that Reagan simply out classed him, is the reason Carters re-election campaign went out not with a bang, but a whimper.

Carter's pathetic attempt to malign Will as a columnist, author, and conservative are more that adequately responded to by Will. Will is so skillful with verbiage that he shreds Carter easily, and Carter doesn't even understand how he is left looking as foolish as he did during his far to many days at the White House.

Memo to Jimmy "Sir Robin" Carter: Stick to building Habitat for Humanity houses.

Here endeth the lesson.
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
 
Click 4 Cathy
by Cordeiro
Chris Muir over at Day By Day has a sister, Cathy, who is currently battling cancer. He's asked the Blogosphere to help promote the clinic where she receives her treatment.




For all the laughs he's given me, a free link to a worthy cause is the least I can do for him.

Get well soon, Cathy.
 
Sergeant James Kinlow, United States Army
by Cordeiro
I came across this article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution by way of Mudville this morning.

Sergeant Kinlow was killed by a roadside bomb in Baghdad this past Sunday. He leaves behind a wife, Daphanie, and two children, Chauncey - 15 and Chelsea - 10.

The outpouring of support from their community is truly remarkable.

Godspeed, Sergeant Kinlow.

Now if I may be so bold, and because its my blog, I will, I'd like to say a few words to Chauncey.

You've lost your father. Words will mean little to you now, and that is as it should be. Each of us grieves in our own way. What struck me from what I read about you was your decision to quit your football team because your #1 fan wouldn't be there anymore to see you play.

This is your decision to make - nobody can make it for you. That said, keep in mind the 30 sweaty team mates that showed up at your door and declared themselves part of your family. I'm pretty sure nobody put them up to that. As far as I know, the only thing high school football players do without being forced is eat cheeseburgers. Whatever your coach told you, remember it. Coaches have a unique way to telling you what you need to hear. Most of the time its stuff like "stay low, stay square, and keep moving". Other times its just words of support. Listen to him. When he told your mom that getting back on the field might do you some good, he's right.

In the coming days, you will bury your father. A flag will drape his casket, rifles will crack their salute, and a bugle will sound taps as a grateful nation honors one of her fallen sons. His life will be celebrated. His memory will be cherished by all who had the honor and privilege of knowing him.

The last days of this summer will roll on. School will start, and things will go on in the new "normal" that will take the place of the life you've known till now.

My advise to you is to suit up, strap on the pads, buckle your chin strap, and play the greatest game God ever saw fit to give man with complete reckless abandon. You should do this because it will give you an outlet - something to do besides laying on your bed after school. Play the game. Play it well.

I'm sure you're asking me "Why? Why should I?"

The answer is very simple. Your #1 fan has the best seat in the stadium.

Here endeth the lesson.

**UPDATE & BUMP** Here's an article describing the funeral services for Sgt. Kinlow.
Tuesday, August 09, 2005
 
The Perfect Crime
by Cordeiro
Sometimes you just have to tip your hat to criminals. Seems that five Brazilian bank robbers dug a tunnel 13 feet deep and 262 feet long from a house, under a major thoroughfare in the northeast coastal Brazilian city of Fortaleza, and drilled a hole in a bank vault.

And just how much money did they make off with?

$65 Million. I'm unsure of the Soprano Currency Code for "Million". $65 Million Dollars worth of untraceable, non-sequential, wallet worn currency.

Conventional wisdom dictates some of the bank robbers may make bring too much attention to themselves after so large a haul.

I guess somebody paid attention to all those bank robber movies after all.

Bem feito, gente!
Monday, August 08, 2005
 
The ACLU's Relentless Pursuit of the Boy Scouts
by Cordeiro
Powerline's Scott Johnson penned a piece in the Weekly Standard detailing the ACLU's 30 year war against the Boy Scouts of America. After having read this, and followed the Hedgehog's various pieces on the same issue, I've decided to throw my two cents into the debate.

In the interests of full disclosure and to inform the reader of my slant, I will state for the record that I am an Eagle Scout. I have been involved in scouting in one way or another since I entered the Cub Scout program at the age of eight. As a Cub Scout and Boy Scout I earned the highest awards offered by each of the two programs. My scouting mentor is none other than my Grandpa Frank, whose love for scouting kept him in close contact with the BSA for some 83 years. I believe in the program and enrolled my eight year old son, Corderinho, on his eighth birthday.

I have participated in more scouting activities than I can remember - everything from Courts of Honor to the rite of passage commonly known as Scout Camp. To put the program in a nutshell - Scouting guides young boys along the pathway to manhood. Scouting teaches valuable principles and skills that help young men make good decisions. It teaches there is a right and wrong in life.

And yes, someplace along that path you learn that plastic wrap has interesting applications in outhouses, and smoke bombs do really cool things when thrown into a campfire. Midnight raids on the campsites of fellow scouts can be dangerous. Mountain lake water is really, really, really, cold - even in August. That said, you can jump in, swim to the floating barge, and swim back - and live to tell about it.

You learn that nature, while beautiful and stunning in all its splendor, is very unforgiving of the unprepared. You can survive a winter encampment, and if you're really adventurous, you can do so in an ice shelter warmed only by a candle.

What is required of a scout? That he obey the Scout Law and be Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent. Also he must live by the Scout Oath, and, on his Honor, do his best to do his duty to God and his country and to obey the Scout Law - to help other people at all times and keep himself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight. (Emphasis mine)

Because membership and participation in the Boy Scout program is limited to those who profess a belief in a Higher Power and openly homosexual men are not permitted in the ranks, the ACLU has had the BSA in its cross-hairs for some 30 years. The ACLU believes membership in any organization, public or private, should be dictated by the ACLU standards, and not that of the organization.

Anything less, and the targeted organization is branded as discriminatory. Many organizations have cowered at the very thought of an ACLU anti-discrimination lawsuit. The BSA has not, and has thus far been successful in warding off the ACLU's attempt to dictate the membership requirements.

I'm not going to discuss whether or not the BSA is a public or private organization. I'll leave that to Hugh, the Hedgehog, and other lawyers to debate. I believe the ACLU has waged a 30 year war on the BSA for some very simple reasons.

They just plain don't like the Scouting Program. Sure, they'll say "If the BSA would simply change their program to suit our demands, everything would be fine." But surrendering to the ACLU would end scouting as it has come to be known. The churches (where the vast majority of Scout Troops are chartered) would simply create another similar program and call it something else. Whatever would be left of the BSA after that would quickly fade into obscurity - much like the Canadian program has.

They can't stand the fact that belief in a Higher Power is a membership requirement. It can't even be said the BSA is a Christian organization. You can be a Jew, Muslim, Christian, Hindu or any other religion (organized or not). The ACLU recognizes no power higher than itself.

Homosexuality is not an accepted part of the program. Openly homosexual men are not permitted to lead scout troops, and homosexual young men are not permitted to participate in scouting activities. One would think, with the recent sexual abuse scandals, the reasoning for this would be self-evident. For those of you who have problems with self evident stuff, please make sure your teenage daughters are sent to a summer camp run by men.

And finally, the ACLU can't stand the absolute standards of the scouting program. In scouting, you either fulfill the requirements, or you don't. In order to advance, you have to pass the tests. Exceptions are made for extenuating circumstances or physical conditions, but if you don't make it, you don't make it. 3% of those entering the program make Eagle.

The latest victory for the ACLU came from a black robed thug in Illinois. Said thug enjoined the Federal Government from allowing the BSA to use facilities at Ft. A.P. Hill for future National Jamborees. Only time and the appeals process will tell whether or not that ruling will stand.

The one thing you have to ask yourself in the midst of all these events - what right does the ACLU have to tell any organization, public, private or otherwise, how to run their membership rolls? Should it be acceptable that one person, or a small group of people should be able to, by force of judicial fiat, force their views on another group of people?

Regardless of your religious or political persuasion, I think you know the answer to that question.

Here endeth the lesson.
 
Peter Jennings Signs Off
by Cordeiro
Peter Jennings, the face of ABC News as long as most anyone can remember, passed away yesterday after a short battle with a very malignant form of lung cancer.

Godspeed, Peter. The news just won't be the same without you.
Friday, August 05, 2005
 
The Kennedy-Dodd Waitress Sandwich Information Clearinghouse
by Bonjo


Chris Dodd, recalling the good old days.

One of the search terms that frequently brings visitors to the SOTR is "kennedy dodd waitress sandwich". Somehow our lowly blog has become the Internet repository for information on Ted Kennedy, Chris Dodd and an unsuspecting waitress at La Brasserie (a restaurant near Capitol Hill in Washington, DC). Some accounts put this event at The Monocle, another DC restaurant. For all we know, it happened at both establishments--and who's to say similar antics didn't occur at many others. Therefore, let it be established that the two senators were at a restaurant.

So to satisfy everyone's curiosity, we offer the following, compiled from various sources:

In 1985, Dodd and fellow Senator Ted Kennedy were out (with dates) for a night on the town at La Brasserie. Much liquor was consumed--that will come as a shock to those of us familiar with Ted Kennedy--and the two Senators were at one point unaccompanied by their dates. The Senators made a "Waitress Sandwich" out of some poor, unsuspecting waitress.

If you're not entirely sure what that means, let's just say you wouldn't want to be the waitress.


Article clip, from the Hartford Courant:

"Dodd and Kennedy were also reported to have made a 'human sandwich' with a waitress at La Brasserie, another Capitol Hill restaurant. The report had it that Kennedy threw the woman on Dodd, who was slumped in a chair, and then jumped on top of her. She was said to have run screaming from the room."


Summary of 1989 Penthouse magazine article, summarized by the Washington Times:

"When she put in an appearance in their private retreat - 'The Teddy Kennedy Fun Room' - the Massachusetts senator picked her up and heaved her onto a table. The crystal candlesticks and champagne glasses shattered as he grabbed her again and flung her on top of Dodd.

"Then Kennedy threw himself on top of the woman. The waitress implored Mr. Kennedy to 'Get off me!'

"Another waitress entered to find 'things all tipped over and Kennedy was on top, [the waitress] was in the middle and Dodd was on the bottom.' At that point the sandwich was disassembled."


Related: DC "Waitress Sandwich Shop" Shutters Doors
Washington Post, August 5, 2005

La Brasserie, a French restaurant on Capitol Hill, closed last month, after a 27-year history of catering to political bigwigs and Hollywood A-listers.

"It was quite a Hill institution," said Lynne Breaux, executive director of the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington, who has eaten there several times. "It was a lovely restaurant."

La Brasserie was located in a town house on Massachusetts Avenue Northeast. It served such politicos as the late Sen. Daniel Moynihan, New York Democrat, former Vice President Al Gore and the late Rep. Sonny Bono, California Republican, as well as actors like Jimmy Stewart, Paul Newman and Jane Fonda, [and who could forget Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd making unique contributions to our sandwich menu] said Lynne Campet, a former co-owner of the restaurant.

"A lot of important people dined there," she said.

Mrs. Campet and her husband, Raymond, bought the restaurant in 1978 with Gaby and Marie Aubouin. At the time, it was a Greek-owned restaurant called Maxim's and previously a cafe called La Ruche.

Mr. Campet and Mr. Aubouin, who worked at the French Embassy together, built the restaurant into a neighborhood favorite. The outdoor patio was "very special," Mrs. Campet said, adding that diners sought the tables under the property's big tree.

The 2003 Zagat Survey, which rates restaurants in different markets, said La Brasserie's terrace "transports one to Paris."

The French-inspired menu included such items as the cold three pepper soup, crabmeat and mozzarella lasagna, homemade tarts and creme brulee.

In 1992, the restaurant was sold to sisters Audrey and Karinne Dequeker, who could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Thursday, August 04, 2005
 
Where's Binny?
by Cordeiro
One month after Islamofascist murdering thugs blew themselves and some 50 Londoners up, al-Qaeda's #2 man has released a video tape threatening more bloodshed in the United States and the United Kingdom.

The video tape was released via the public relations arm of al-Qaeda commonly known as Al Jazzera.

I have just one question for Aymen al-Zawahiri (other than "Where are you going to be tomorrow morning at 10?".

Where is Binny Laden? Is he dead? Is he so badly shaken or wounded by the recent attempts to kill/capture him that he is unable to come on camera and make these threats himself?

Or is it possible that he is simply a paranoid coward?

I quote from Adam Sandler's Operaman performance at the Concert for New York City - a show put on shortly after the events of September 11, 2001:

Usama thinks he's bad. Usama thinks he's brave. Then tell me why Usama is shi**ing in a cave?
Cowards wagging their fingers at a camera do not in me inspire fear.

Here endeth the lesson.
 
New York Times Sinks To New Low
by Cordeiro
In the never ending quest of the New York Times blaze new frontiers in journalistic lows, Drudge writes today that NYT "Investigative" reporter Glen Justice is "hot on the case to investigate adoption records of Judge Roberts’ two young children, Josie age 5 and Jack age 4."

The NYT claims this "investigation" is part of the paper's "standard background check".

Yeah, right. And if my sister had wheels, she'd be a wagon.

Look for the NYT to publish something accusing Judge Roberts of flying to a Latin American country and buying two children from a street vendor.

Memo to Glen Justice: Have you no shame, sir? You can't find any dirt on Roberts, or his wife, so now you stoop to "investigating" how they adopted two beautiful children?

The New York Times has long printed the moniker "All The News That's Fit To Print". Jayson Blair was either unable or unwilling to find the news to print, so he just plain made it up. Glen Justice can't seem to find any news on Roberts, so now he's stooped to using children to make news.

For some reason, I'm not surprised.
 
Following The Hedgehog - CENTCOM added to the SOTR Blogroll
by Cordeiro
Caught this post from Hedgehog this morning and decided to heed his counsel. I prefer to get information from those closest to the situation on the ground, and you don't get any closer than CENTCOM.


Wednesday, August 03, 2005
 
Apollo Flight Director Takes Naysayers To Task
by Cordeiro
Gene Kranz has had enough of the nattering risk-averse naysayers who seek to convince people space travel isn't worth the risks inherent in the process of boldly going where no one has gone before.

I commend his editorial for your reading. He has seen a part of the Space Program few men have. He knows the dangers and feels they are worth taking.

And I agree with him.

Well said, Gene. Thank you.
 
Bellwether for 2006?
by Cordeiro
In what was billed as a bellwether race for the 2006 election cycle, Ohio held a special election to replace Rob Portman who stepped down after being tapped by W to be the US Trade Representative.

When the dust settled, Jean Schmidt won the seat - defeating Paul Hackett 52% to 48%.

Memo to (Major) Hackett: Saying W is a bigger threat to the US than is binny Laden is never a great campaign trick.

Leftist Democracts, eager to claim some kind of victory, summed up their feelings with the pontifications of Rahm Emanuel:

This election is a shockwave of voter discontent that will be felt all across the country. Every Republican in Congress should consider himself put on notice.
And of course I can't forget to mention Nancy "Bela" Pelosi:

The issues, political and ethics environment are good for Democrats, and Paul Hackett's campaign in a Republican district proves it. Republicans are on notice -- Americans are demanding a change. Americans will no longer tolerate the Republicans' continued abuses of power and catering to corporate special interests at the expense of the public interest.
Sure, Bela. The political environment is so great for Democrats they can't seem to win any election - not even a special one most people couldn't care less about.

Republicans, rather than waste ink, airtime, and bandwidth, had a much simpler reaction:

We won.
Someday the Dems will figure out the concept of winning elections versus losing them. Evidently that day is not today.
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
 
Staff Sergeant Dale L. Horn, United States Army
by Cordeiro
Or perhaps I should refer to him as "The American Sheik".

The people of the 37 towns and villages he patrols do. He's got 5 sheep, a small patch of land, and the respect and admiration of a lot of Iraqis. I'd say he's gone native, but his wife vetoed the villagers' request that he take on a second wife.

Well done, Sergeant. Nice headress.

HT: Blackfive
 
Air America - Money? What Money?
by Cordeiro
In the continuing saga of the sinking ship that is Al "Cheap Shot" Franken's not so bold foray into Talk Radio, Air America's funding problems have sunk to a new low previously thought unattainable.

Never let it be said Air America doesn't succeed in blazing new frontiers.

Air America's principal problem is its failure to make anything remotely resembling a profit. For those of you unfamiliar with the term "profit", its the money left after expenses, taxes, and Starbucks fees. Profit is routinely denounced by the left-wing radicals in this country. Profit represents the left's failure to tax, regulate or otherwise deny a company's right to have money to spend however it sees fit.

The left must be extremely proud of Air America. It makes the dot.com companies of the late 90's look solvent.

That said, market forces still require their pound of flesh from companies operating in the market. People demand to be paid. Utilities demand payment or threaten to turn off little things like lights, water, and latte machines. Air America, despite its best efforts, still must feed the very fickle demands of the market.

As Air America has been phenomenally unsuccessful in turning a profit, it has engaged in something most companies don't have to do. Air America does a lot of fund raising. Well, after phone calls to wealthy Democratic donors went un-returned, and several bake sales ended up losing money, Air America started looking for loans.

Some of us would call the transfer of 875 Large from a Bronx non-profit (and federally funded) organization a sham, but I digress.

I am not a lawyer. I'm not an accountant. That said, I won't bore you with the mind-numbing details of Air America's "loan" fiasco. Captain Ed, Michelle Malkin, and Radio Equalizer all do a phenomenal job of that.

What I am is a student of market forces. Air America has one fundamental problem for which there is little they can do. (Memo to "Cheap Shot" Franken: Can you handle the truth?) Here it is:

Nobody is listening. Nobody. People in New York City would rather listen to a Caribbean Steel Drum band than anything Franken and Company have to say.

No listeners = no ratings. No ratings = no revenue. No revenue = bankruptcy - or in Air America's case, siphoning money from programs aimed at helping children and the elderly.

As of this writing, not one word has been spoken, written, or otherwise transmitted regarding this scandal via the MSM. Why this is so, I can only guess.

Perhaps the MSM is afraid (collectively) that upon reporting this scandal, their reporters will be cut down from behind by "Cheap Shot" Franken. After all, that seems to be his modus operandi for dealing with those who disagree with him.

Here endeth the lesson.

UPDATE:

As much as I don't want to debunk all Kos' numbers (ok, maybe I do), but here are some ratings numbers that paint a very bleak picture for Air America. Al "Cheap Shot" Franken is down 50% in Boston and 14% in New York since Spring 2004. To paraphrase Frank, If you can't make it (as a liberal talk show host) in New York (or Boston) you can't make it anywhere (else).

UPDATE #2: Radioequalizer has interesting information on AAR's looming payroll problems. This could end up being the downfall of the network. Liberals though they may be, getting paid is still somewhat important to them.
Monday, August 01, 2005
 
Petty Officer James E. Suh, United States Navy
by Cordeiro
I commend for your reading today Froggy Rumination's account of the funeral services for Petty Officer James E. Suh, a member of the elite Navy SEALs. He was laid to rest in the Forest Lawn Cemetery of Los Angeles with full military honors.

Godspeed, Petty Officer Suh. Welcome home.
 
Weekend Re-cap
by Cordeiro
Somethings you may have accidentally missed over the weekend. Never let it be said the SOTR does not provide quality to the Blogosphere.

After taking the Ravishing Mrs. Cordeiro and my son Corderinho to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (all in all a pretty good flick), we went to Red Robin for dinner. On several of the TV screens in the restaurant, ESPN was playing what it called "Great American Events". Being a good American, my interest piqued. Ok, maybe that's not completely truthful. I had to wait for a table and had nothing better to do.

Remember, this is a Saturday night. One would think the main ESPN channel would be broadcasting baseball or some other sport. Nope. Much to my (and the rest of the restaurant patron's) amusement we were treated to the International Federation of Competitive Eating's US Open.

No, I am not kidding. I can't make this stuff up.

The competition was based on a three course meal made up of
* Italian Salad (served in 2 pound plates - you had to put away two of these to make it to the next round)
* Potato Skins (served on 4 pound plates - again quantity of two if you wanted to proceed)
* And finally and Appetizer tray - roughly six pounds.

To the chagrin of fat guys everywhere, the US Open was won by a skinny Asian guy.

And the corporate sponsor? I'll let you guess. You only get one guess.

OK, give up? (Or cheat by visiting the provided link?)

Alka Seltzer.

This, dear readers, was quality comic relief on television.

And, speaking of television, former Vice-President Algore (who incidentally also ran for president a few times) launched his very own Cable TV network. Having not learned anything from the flop of liberal leftist radio's Air America, Algore's network will be judged by the same standards as everybody else - whether or not it can keep the interest of anybody but those chained to the couch and forced to watch.

Something tells me the US Open of Competitive Eating will always get better ratings than will Algore.

And finally, Drudge reported last week that Helen Thomas (a White House press corps member since the Thomas Jefferson Adminsitration) told a fellow reporter:

The day Dick Cheney is going to run for president, I'll kill myself.
My first reaction to this stunning announcment was Helen Thomas is still alive? The picture on Drudge's piece calls her status as "alive" into serious question.


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