Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 in Review

2007 taught me something. I suck at writing. I mean, have you read some of this drek? However, there was the Evil Leaders League. That was pretty good. Also, if you google the neo-nazi "Bill Riccio," I made the first page this year. That's pretty cool.

My favorites from the year:
I obtained a rare letter From the Desk of Gerald Ford after he died.
Me Tutoring Little Hitler is self-explanatory.
After nearly 2,000 years, Jesus Speaks!
A Slightly Offensive Look at the Dniester Conflict shows us that current events can be fun!
Kuwait Wants You to visit their country.
Remember when I was offered gay sex in India? It was Hard to Get Used To.
I had a discovery Flying Over Baghdad.
Transcript from a Republican Attack Ad: Tim Johnson was the target.
Nearly dying on a mountain in Ecuador, I Wouldn't Wish It On You.
A chronicle of my Ten Favorite Neo-Nazis.

There are probably a few more good ones in there somewhere. Happy new year everyone.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Buffalo Bills Season in Review

The Bills finished the 2007 season with a 7-9 record. The Bills were a scrappy bunch, who always gave maximum effort despite numerous key injuries.

No review of Buffalo's season can go without mentioning Kevin Everett. Everett was injured in the first game of the season. It was believed that he was paralyzed for life. His life was in danger. The doctors saved his life and he made a wonderful comeback. By week 16, Everett walked into the stadium to wish his teammates well. If we all show the spirit and determination of Kevin Everett, this world would be a better place.

Head coach Dick Jauron was the right man to lead the Bills through their trials this season. His conservative approach was perfect for a young bunch just learning the game of professional football. Those youngsters were led by rookies QB Trent Edwards and RB Marshawn Lynch. Edwards is the QB of the future. If Losman remains past next season as a backup, I would have no problem with that. But Edwards has the ability to make a few first downs. Losman is all or nothing. Their have been some great RBs in Buffalo, but Lynch might be the best since Thurman Thomas left town.

The beefy Bills offensive line, led by Jason Peters was solid. But the Bills couldn't punch the ball into the end zone. They need to get a big bodied receiver for next season, whether it's a tight end, a seldom used wideout, or a starter. This would help Edwards out in the red zone immensely. They also might make more third and mediums. Lee Evans and Roscoe Parrish cover the speed part. I love Josh Reed, but he might be the odd man out. The offense also needs a short-yardage back like Ruben Droughns. They couldn't run the ball in the red zone or on third and short.

The offense's deficiencies exposed an undermanned defense. They lost a significant number of starters and second stringers early in the year. The bend-but-don't-break D and the fact that the offense couldn't stay on the field, occasionally allowed the opponent to run over the Bills in the 4th quarter. But Buffalo learned that they have a number of guys who can play. This could very well help the club's depth next season.

Special teams was wear the Bills hung their hats. An awesome duo of returners, an effective punter, a consistent kicker, and great coverage aided the Bills' record. While the offense and defense were low in the league in yards, the special teams made up for it.

I was thrilled to be able to watch many of the Bills games here in Maryland. I saw the games against: Pittsburgh, NY Jets, Dallas, Baltimore, Cincinnati, New England, 4th quarter of the Jacksonville game, Washington, NY Giants, Philadelphia. I don't think I'll get to watch that many in 2008, but I hope so.

I’m really proud of the team this year. I'm excited for next season. GO BILLS!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Preventing Perfection

Everyone in America, outside of New England and frontrunners, was rooting forthe Giants to beat the Patriots. Rooting for the underdog to strike down the evil empire. It didn't happen.

The Giants hung tough, but Eli Manning just can't seem to get it done in New York. He ended the game with the worst ever touchdown drive in NFL history. Spike the ball! Kick a field goal! Don't call timeout! Alas, we put our faith in a dud.

I've been thinking, maybe it'll be much sweeter if the Patriots go 16-0 and then lose in the playoffs. They'd be forever remembered as the king of all choke-artists. Yes, that would be lovely.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Barack Obama on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues.

Obama proposes removing most U.S. troops by 16 months from when he takes office, beginning as soon as he does so. He would leave troops to protect diplomats and target al Qaeda. Initially, he voted to fund the war, but of late he has voted against funding. With changes in the situation in Iraq, this is not necessarily inconsistent.

Iran and Pakistan
Barack Obama was against the non-binding resolution that named an Iranian military unit a terrorist organization. He did not vote on the resolution, however. Obama favors a policy of diplomacy at all costs towards Iran. This is a good idea, considering the National Intelligence Estimate concluded that Iran had ceased their nuclear program in 2003. Obama has left open the option to go into Pakistan to get al Qaeda. This might gain weight since the Bhutto assassination, but it could potentially create more anti-American militants.

Health Care
Barack Obama proposes mandatory health coverage for all children and catastrophic care for all. He does not believe making health coverage mandatory for all will lower costs and thus, is not in favor of universal health care.

Obama would build a barrier on the border with Mexico, which is a waste of resources. As with all Democratic candidates, he favors a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. He is for giving undocumented immigrants a driver's licenses, which is a good idea. They're going to drive anyway, it's better to teach them the laws of the road and have a record of their presence in the country.

I couldn't find what Barack Obama would do with No Child Left Behind, but he is a critic. He is in favor on universal pre-kindergarten. He wants to increase funding for Head Start.

Free Trade
Barack Obama believes NAFTA should be reviewed. He voted against CAFTA. However, he voted for a recent NAFTA-style agreement with Peru.

Obama cosponsored legislation, along with Sens Boxer and Sanders, to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2050. He favors the cap-and-trade system, where the right to pollute is auctioned away. He would not freeze on new coal development until clean-coal technologies are commercially available, calling it arbitrary. He is a strong supporter of both corn and cellulosic ethanol.

Other issues
death penalty: For it.
gay rights: against gay marriage, for civil unions. He believes the states should determine gay marriage. He's for the ENDA and cosponsored legislation expanding federal hate crimes laws to include gays and lesbians.
Cuban embargo: He would lift some restrictions, but not lift.

Other stuff
Barack Obama is a first term senator from Illinois and could potentially be the first black party nominee for president and the first black president. He has been accused of being politically inexperienced. Whether this is a play on his race is unknown, but it is a curious accusation. Obama has had more foreign policy experience than Bill Clinton and George W. Bush when they were elected president. Obama is older than Clinton and John Kennedy when they were elected president. Obama lived in Indonesia for a few years when he was young. Barack Obama is a charismatic speaker and has cosponsored some significant liberal legislation including requiring police interrogation to be recorded and those above. But he hasn't shown political courage all the time, which might be a requirement for someone aiming to change the way politics is done.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Dennis Kucinich on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues.

Dennis Kucinich favors a full withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq as soon as possible. Kucinich voted against the 2002 resolution to authorize the war in Iraq. He had consistently voted against funding the war.

Health Care
Kucinich advocates a single-payer government-run health care system. He would buyout private insurance companies.

As with all Democratic nominees, Kucinich favors a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. He is against wasting funds to build a barrier on the Mexican border.

He advocates fully funding No Child Left Behind.

Free Trade
Kucinich would reverse NAFTA and is skeptical of free trade.

He advocates the Works Green Administration, to ensure each aspect of the federal government would incorporate green goals. He wants to move away from carbon-based energy. He would phase out nuclear power. He wants create jobs by giving home the choice to switch to wind and solar power. Kucinich is skeptical of using ethanol and is against subsidizing.

Other issues
death penalty: Against
gay marriage: For
gun control: For
Cuban embargo: For lifting it.

Other stuff
Dennis Kucinich has been a representative from Ohio since 1997. He was mayor of Cleveland in the late 1970s. He ran for the Democratic nomination for president in 2004. His strength is as an anti-war candidate. He has proposed a Department of Peace. Kucinich is running a narrow campaign war in Iraq is his signature issue. In 2004, he was the anti-war candidate with the most experience. That is no longer the case in this election. He is right on issues such as the death penalty, gay marriage, and gun control, but those are issues that will most likely be decided by the states at this moment in time, regardless of the president's positions.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

John Edwards on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues.

John Edwards' Iraq plan is a bit confusing. He wants an immediate withdrawal of 50,000 troops. Apparently, since that won't happen, he would withdraw 50,000 troops within several months of his inauguration. He would end the combat phase of the war within ten months of his inauguration. He would leave between 3,500 and 5,000 troops in Iraq for target missions, such as: killing or capturing al Qaeda- seizing buildings and other places of interest- extricating prisoners, contraband, and intelligence- re-taking critical infrastructure which had fallen into "wrong" hands- providing immediate security for strengthening an embassy or airport- supporting overwhelmed friendly units anywhere in the country- protecting the border. He would leave 10,000 troops in Kuwait to help with those missions. Those troops won't be coming home anytime soon.

Iran and Pakistan
Edwards was against the non-binding resolution that named an Iranian military unit a terrorist organization. However, he believes that Iran is an "extremely dangerous country" and would not rule out an attack if Iran were threatening attack. He does favor diplomacy first and foremost. Edwards was right to be against the resolution, but his other comments are unnecessary. Iran is a relatively poor country with much more bark than bite. The recent National Intelligence Estimate even showed that Iran has not had an active nuclear program since 2003. Edwards wants to use US military aid as leverage to get Pakistan to go after al Qaeda. On a positive note, Edwards hopes to rid the planet of nuclear weapons.

Health Care
Edwards favors universal health care. This includes mandatory coverage. However, employers would have the option of either covering employees privately or sharing the costs of purchasing coverage from a list of state-run plans. Individuals would have a choice between the government plans or private coverage. The idea is to give the individual more choice and insurance companies competition to ultimate lower the cost of coverage. The thought is that if the government can provide low-cost quality health care, we would move towards a single-payer system. All of the state-run plans would be open to everyone regardless of pre-condition. Edwards has threatened to take away law-makers' federal health coverage if they don't pass his plan.

John Edwards is in favor of putting a barrier on the Mexican border, which is a waste of resources. While, as with all Democratic candidates, he is for a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, he would punish employers for hiring them, which makes you wonder how they'll get money to eat and live. He believes the states should decide whether undocumented immigrants should be given a driver's license. Yes, it is a cop-out.

He would overhaul No Child Left Behind. He is for universal pre-kindergarten. He proposes a pay increase for teachers. He proposes a national teacher's school to train 1,000 top college students. Under his plan, the government would pay for public-college tuition for one year to students who are willing to work through school and stay out of trouble.

Free Trade
John Edwards would reverse NAFTA and other trade programs that he says are designed to wipe out the middle class.

Edwards is in favor of an 80 percent reduction of greenhouse-gas emissions by 2050. He proposed a ban on coal-fired power plants. He is against liquefied coal. He favors a cap-and-trade system where the right to pollute is auctioned away. He proposed a 40 mile per gallon fuel-economy standard by 2016. He is in favor of corn-based ethanol, because it will lay the foundation for cellulosic ethanol in the future.

Other issues
death penalty: He's pro.
Cuban embargo: He would only lift some restrictions.
gay rights: Against gay marriage, for civil unions. For the ENDA, against Don't Ask, Don't Tell military policy.

Other stuff
John Edwards was a one term senator from North Carolina from 1998-2004. He ran for president in 2004 and was the Democratic vice presidential nominee that year. Edwards was an attorney before pursuing a political career. His wife Elizabeth has had cancer. The couple lost a son in an automobile accident in 1996. John Edwards finish second in the Democratic primary during his 2004 presidential run. He has been an advocate for the poor in the time since then. However, he needs to rectify his liberal positions with his less-liberal voting record during his time in the senate.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Hillary Clinton on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues.

Hillary Clinton voted for a resolution that would end the combat phase in Iraq by March 31, 2008. However, she would leave residual troops in Iraq for the following reasons: to prevent al Qaeda from having a staging ground, until common cause has been made with some Iraqis in Anbar province, to make sure the Kurds are being treated well, to quell Iranian influence, to protect the U.S. Embassy in Iraq, to continue training missions. She also says that leaving Iraq would be against American and Israeli interests. These provisions leave the door open for a heavy US troops presence to remain in Iraq for a long time. Clinton voted against funding the war recently, which was a turn around from her previous votes on the subject.

Clinton is the only Democratic candidate to vote for a non-binding resolution to name an Iranian military unit a terrorist organization. This is not a direct vote for war with Iran, but it opens the door. It grants the Bush administration the benefit of the doubt, something they don't deserve. It is awfully reminiscent of the 2002 vote to authorize force against Iraq that Clinton also voted for. It's a particularly poor show of judgment on Clinton's part since the National Intelligence Estimate claimed that Iran has not had a nuclear program since 2003.

Health Care
Hillary Clinton favors universal health care. Her plan would make health insurance mandatory. Families would receive tax credits to help pay for coverage, which would be designed to limit the premiums to a percentage of a family's income. Americans would be offered the same health care benefits offered to Congress through the federal employee benefits program as well as a public program similar to Medicare. She would help to pay for her plan by rolling back Bush's tax cuts for those making over $250,000. Source: "Clinton unveils mandatory health care insurance plan"

Hillary Clinton favors building a barrier on the border with Mexico, which is a waste of resources. She is against giving undocumented immigrants a driver's license. As with all Democratic candidates, she favors a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, but it is not a priority.

Free Trade
Clinton has a mixed record on trade. She has been criticized for originally a supporting NAFTA and now being critical of it. The criticism is unwarranted; people should be allowed to change their opinion if they realize their old stance was wrong. It's common sense. However, it is her recent record that is mixed. She voted against CAFTA. She recently voted for the NAFTA-style Peru agreement. She is skeptical of the free trade Doha trade talks. She would review NAFTA, but not necessarily scrap it.

I haven't found much a plan put forth by Clinton. It simply not be there. She is in favor of universal pre-kindergarten and helped to create Head Start. She also co-sponsored legislation called the Disabilities in Education Improvement Act, which is designed to help students in Special Education

Clinton supports the goal of an 80% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2050. She thinks we should look at clean coal as a source of energy, but not liquefied coal. She is agnostic about nuclear power. She favors the cap and trade system, using an auction for the allocation of permits to pollute. She supports a fuel-efficiency standard of 35 miles per gallon by 2020, below what the other Democratic candidates are calling for.

Other issues
gay rights: She is against gay marriage, but favors civil unions. She supports the ENDA and, as with all Democratic candidates, is against the Don't Ask, Don't Tell military policy.
death penalty: She is a long-time advocate.
Cuban embargo: She is for it in its current form

Other stuff
Hillary Clinton is a two-term senator from New York. She was first lady of the United States for eight years. This might come as a surprise to you, but her husband is former president Bill Clinton. Hillary Clinton is the first female frontrunner for her party's nomination for president in the history of the U.S. She has faced some ridiculous critiques because of that fact. People question whether the leaders of other countries would take her, as a woman, seriously (of course they would, she wouldn't be the first female head of state in the world). Her appearance is often unfairly examined in the media. Her stances are often analyzed in the context of her being a woman and not as a candidate. She should be evaluated from a political perspective, where she is center-left on domestic issues and a centrist (or even center-right) when it comes to foreign policy.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Bill Richardson on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues.

Bill Richardson would remove all troops from Iraq as soon as possible. He has said that would be anywhere from 3-8 months. He would not leave any residual troops in Iraq. Richardson believes that America's presence in Iraq is only making things worse. This is a good assessment. Most Iraqis do not want the U.S. in their country. According to the Iraq Study Group Report, 79% of Iraqis are against America's presence in their country. Fareed Zakaria states that even our noblest intentions are making things worse. So-called democratic elections have exacerbated sectarian tensions, because people only vote for their sect. By training the Iraqi military, we are actually arming the two warring factions. As long as America stays in Iraq, the Iraqi government will not be perceived as legitimate. When we leave, the Iraqis could very well unify to get al Qaeda out of their country. Most Iraqis detest al Qaeda's methods, but appreciate their anti-America stance. Bill Richardson understands the best policy for both Americans and Iraqis is to redeploy all American troops out of Iraq.

Health Care
Bill Richardson favors a universal healthcare plan. The plan would make health care mandatory. It would provide tax credits on a sliding scale to help residents purchase health insurance. His plan would require employers to pay a share of the health insurance costs. There is more about his plan here.

Richardson has the most ambitious education plan of all of the candidates. His plan would cost $60 million. He wants to scrap No Child Left Behind with the assumption that kids learn a lot less when they are taught to one test. He promises a national average starting salary of $40,000 for teachers. He vows to hire 100,000 new math and science teachers. He is in favor of a universal pre-kindergarten and enacted legislation towards that end in New Mexico. He would pay for his plan by cutting loan subsidies to private banks and lenders. He would also cut Pentagon waste and outdated weapons systems designed for the Cold War.

Richardson would not waste money on building a barrier on the Mexican border. He believes that if you build a 12-foot wall, there will be a lot of 13-foot ladders. As with all Democratic candidates, he is in favor of providing a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. He is in favor of undocumented immigrants obtaining a driver's license, something he has passed in New Mexico. They're going to drive anyway, it's better to teach them the laws of the road and have a record of their presence in the country. As with all candidates, he is in favor of punishing employers who hire undocumented immigrants, which makes you wonder how these people are going to make money.

Bill Richardson is against war with Iran. He is firmly in the diplomacy camp, which is not a surprise considering that he's an experienced diplomat himself. It also happens to be the right position, especially since the latest National Intelligence Estimate states that Iran has not had a nuclear program since 2003. Of the Democratic candidates, only Hillary Clinton voted for or supported the recent non-binding resolution that named an Iranian military unit a terrorist organization.

Gay rights
Bill Richardson is in favor of gay marriage, but does not believe it is practical, much like Lincoln was against slavery, but didn't believe abolition was practical, until the situation arose two years into his term. Not that the abolition of slavery and gay marriage are alike in really any way, just saying. However, Richardson claimed that he believed that homosexuality was a choice at a debate over the summer. he also used a slur in Spanish for gay people on the Imus show in the Spring of 2006. However, his record is strong on gay rights. As with all Democratic candidates, he supports the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. In New Mexico, he has enacted legislation granting for benefits for same-sex partners. A confusing dichotomy indeed.

He would mandate a 90 percent greenhouse-gas emission reduction by 2050, which is the strongest call of any candidate. He also calls for a short-term reduction of 20% by 2020. He believes carbon-clean coal will play a role in the future. he also believes that nuclear power will play a role. However, he would eliminate subsidies given to coal, nuclear, and oil. He is a strong supporter of both corn-based ethanol and cellulosic ethanol. Richardson has a strong incentive for electric cars in his auto proposal. He's proposing an increase to a 50 mpg standard for automobiles by 2020, one of the most ambition plans of any candidate.

Other issues
death penalty: He's for it.
guns: He's for them. He against an assault riffle ban and has the most conservative stance on gun control of any Democratic candidate.
Cuban embargo: He believes it's outdated and would lift it.

Other stuff
Bill Richardson is currently the Governor of New Mexico. He has an impressive resume. In addition to being a two-term governor, he was Secretary of Energy under Bill Clinton, a United Nations Ambassador, and a congressperson for 14 years. Richardson is of Mexican descent and grew up in Mexico City. You might not believe this, but he also speaks Spanish. He's married to his wife Barbara. Richardson is not a great debater, but comes across as charming in one-on-one interviews. He would be the first Mexican-American president if elected.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Joe Biden on the Issues

It's important to vote for a candidate based on the issues, experience, and judgment as opposed to the production values of their television commercials. The candidates do their best to hide their positions on important issues. Here is my effort to try and present where they stand on the issues. For now, I'm only going to include the Democratic candidates. Mike Gravel won't be included because, c'mon. I appreciate his voice of dissent in the race, but he doesn't have much to offer in the way of real ideas. I won't include Chris Dodd either. His stances are very similar to Hillary Clinton except on Iran and the Cuban Embargo.

Joe Biden advocates separating Iraq into three semi-autonomous regions and leaving 50,000 troops on the border to quell Iranian influence and to protect the green zone in Baghdad. The Kurds in the north have enjoyed autonomy since the latter portion of Saddam Hussein’s reign. There is no significant area that is 100% Sunni, which would make his plan a logistical nightmare. The result would be reminiscent of the partition of India and Pakistan in which a million people died. India and Pakistan have been enemies since the split. In Iraq, these enemy factions would be part of the same country.

Funding the war
Joe Biden is the only Democratic candidate who has consistently voted to fund the war in Iraq. He even added the MRap amendment, which would add more funding for the war than Bush wanted. The additional funding is designated for vehicles that are more likely to hold up against IEDs.

Health Care
Joe Biden favors mandatory coverage for all children and catastrophic care for all. He would look to states for ideas on universal coverage.

As with all Democratic candidates, Joe Biden wants to create a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. He is in favor of providing them an ID card. He would punish employers for hiring undocumented workers. He wants a barrier on the border with Mexico, which is a huge waste of resources.

Iran and Pakistan
He voted against the non-binding resolution that would deem an Iranian military unit a terrorist organization. Voting for the resolution has helped legitimize George Bush's drumbeat to war with Iran. Joe Biden has correctly analyzed that Iran is not a major threat the United States. It's a third world country, which has not had even a program to develop nuclear weapons since 2003. He wants to shift the focus away from Iran and towards Pakistan. That is a good idea because Pakistan is home to many al Qaeda operatives and has the bomb. I don't believe Biden would attack Pakistan, but he would turn up the diplomatic pressure to make sure they are fighting extremism. I'm not confident that he would recognize that the leadership of Pakistan much maintain a delicate balance between fighting extremism and losing legitimacy with their constituency for being to pro-American in a nation currently skeptical of the U.S.

Biden is the only Democratic candidate in favor of putting U.S. troops in Darfur. I appreciate the commitment to Darfur, but it may create a situation awfully similar to Iraq.

Free Trade
While Joe Biden voted against CAFTA and the recent free trade-style Peru agreement, it is my understanding that he is an ideological advocate for free trade. See: "Biden defends free trade, touts school plan" by Dan Gearino, October 4, 2007 Quad City Times.

Biden wants to raise the mpg standard to 40 by 2017. He is for capping emissions at 80 percent below the 1990 level by 2050. He is against liquefied or "clean" coal for the United States, but sees an opportunity to export coal to China. he does see a role for nuclear power if it is safe. He believes the use of corn-based ethanol is a good start, but wants to move to cellulosic ethanol by funding research and incentivizing.

Other issues
crime: The 1996 Biden Crime Bill added 60 more offenses to be death penalty-eligible, including non-violent crimes such as drug offenses.
death penalty: Did you read the his stance on crime? Man is he for it.
gay marriage: Takes the not cop-out stance of being against gay marriage but for civil unions. Not cop-out at all.

Other stuff
Joe Biden has experience. He has been a senator from Delaware since 1973. He co-chairs four different senate committees. However, during the campaign he has made some offensive, hurtful, or unclear statements, depending on your take. His comments were about Indian-Americans and blacks. The other candidates have stated that Biden's heart is in the right place, but it does beg the question of does he have the right temperament or judgment to run the country. He lost his first wife and a daughter in a car crash in 1972. He has since remarried.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

The Evil Leaders League

Season 3 of the ELL will start sometime in January. I've created an ELL site at

Past results are located on the new ELL site. So are other features including profiles of each evil competitor. There's also a poll and photo galleries.

I'll most likely still post each week's results here if you prefer to read it here at the HaraQuack Times, but they'll also be on the ELL site. There's a link to the ELL on the right side here. Have a nice weekend and be sure to stand and fight for America... or something.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Follow the Pack

I like the show the Boondocks, but I heard that more people watch that awful Tila Tequila show. So I'm gonna just do what everyone else does and watch that terrible Tila Tequila show instead of the Boondocks. Maybe I should vote the same way for president.

I actually watched CNN for about an hour today. Did you know that they're "the best political team on television?" If you watched the network for an hour, it'd be hard not to. They only mentioned it about 18 times in that span.

CNN also reported on the "three-way dogfight" between Clinton, Edwards, and Obama. Michael Vick would be disappointed to learn that no charges were filed for the poor choice of metaphor.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Hillary Clinton - A Closer Look

Hillary Clinton is a senator from New York and running for the Democratic nomination for president.

Here are some of Clinton's points that I like:
  • Voted to end combat phase in Iraq on March 31, 2008
  • Health care plan- choice, same coverage as fed coverage
  • Helped create Head Start, co-sponsored special ed bill
  • Supports a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants
  • Supports Employment Non-Discrimination Act

Here are some I don't like:

  • Would likely leave troops in Iraq for a long time
  • Voted to name Iranian military unit a terrorist organization
  • Voted to authorize the Iraq war in 2002
  • Against driver's licenses for undocumented workers
  • For fencing on the Mexican border
  • Pro-death penalty

Here are some irrelevant fun facts:

  • Could beat every candidate in both parties in arm-wrestling contest
  • You think Mike Vick was bad, watch her dropkick a puppy
  • One of two candidates who wears pearls (the other, Mike Gravel)
  • Wants that young punk Obama off her lawn
  • Made a joke once in 1963- about a chicken, wasn't funny

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

All H-duk Football Hall of Fame

Class of 2007
RB Jerome Bettis
DL John Randle
RB Marshall Faulk
DB Rod Woodson
DB Ronnie Lott
OL Willie Roaf

Class of 2005
Class of 2006

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Steroid Era

The Mitchell Report landed last Thursday and it confirmed what we already suspected, performance-enhancing drugs were rampant in Major League Baseball over the last decade plus.

It was a sad moment in the history of baseball and in my life. I am 25 years old, so that period includes my childhood. I've learned that my childhood heroes were mostly cheats. I never believed in fairytales; I've known tragedy. With this news it's evident that even the fun things are tainted. Those great moments from my youth that baseball provided were frauds. People who are my age and young are probably members of the most cynical generation in history. There are few goods things in this world. That list seems to be shrinking.

There were a few names from the Mitchell Report that were especially personal to me. They include: Nook Logan, Mike Stanton, and Kent Merker. Last week I took down a picture of David Justice that I've had on my wall for many years.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Not Gonna Make It

The Buffalo Bills have about as much chance of making the playoffs as I do of being successful or people liking me. The Bills were mathematically eliminated yesterday after an 8-0 road loss in blizzard conditions against the Cleveland Browns.

The Bills got off to the slow start this season, which featured much heartbreak, both in life and in competition. In the snow, Trent Edwards had his worst game, but hopefully in time, he'll be able to adjust to those conditions typical of winter in Buffalo. Marshawn Lynch managed to move the line of scrimmage a bit, but not as much as Browns' back Jamal Lewis.

I can't say it enough, I'm proud to be a long time member of the Bills fan diaspora. This has been a particularly likable team. They may not have had the most talent, really in any game they played this season, but they always had the most heart. At 7-7, the Bills are a lot better than most thought they would be.

The Miami Dolphins got their first win of the season unfortunately. Any week that the Bills loss and the Nazi Dolphins win is a bad one. That hasn't happened for a while.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Name Game

I hate going to the dentist. He's always very curt with me. He's a dick. He says, "Let me be frank with you, you have a lot of cavities. I don't think you're brushing." Go to hell buddy. When I feel a nick, I know the Novocain is about to swell up my mouth. I wish he'd just slip me a mickey. He sticks that metal hook and moves it around in my cavity as if he's trying to jimmy a lock. Then he starts talking to me. I'm embarrassed enough as I don that stupid green apron thing, plus my mouth is a little occupied at the moment. Sure, let's have a conversation. Why don't we sing a carol and get a cup of joe together while we're at it.

When he turns the drill on you, know you're in for a rocky road. At that point, I just want to run away to the john. That drill drives me crazy; it's like a cat scratching a blackboard. At least when that suction thingy comes, there's a ray of hope, and it’s almost over. From all the cavities I've had filled, I've got so much silver in my mouth I think put it in my will. Then he gives me the bill. I know it'll cost a buck or two. I wonder why I keep going back, why I let him rob me. Maybe I'll call jake on him. I'm the reason why he's rich. I should just jack him off; it'd be cheaper.

Catch all the names?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Barack Obama - A Closer Look

Barack Obama is a senator from Illinois and running for the Democratic nomination for president.

Here are some of Obama's points that I like:
  • Voted against funding the war in Iraq
  • Would expand pre-kindergarten programs
  • For giving undocumented immigrants driver's licenses
  • Would seek a global ban on nuclear weapons (but not unilaterally)
  • Favors diplomacy when dealing with Iran

Here are some I don't like:

  • Would take 16 months to get troops home from Iraq (too long)
  • Would leave residual forces in Iraq
  • For a barrier on border with Mexico
  • Supported free trade agreement with Peru
  • Pro-death penalty

Here are some irrelevant fun facts:

  • Name rhymes with Iraq Hussein Osama
  • Is the first clean articulate black man Joe Biden's ever met
  • Wishes the election had a swimsuit competition
  • Is a distant cousin of Dick Cheney
  • Spends a dollar to put in his two cents
  • Nicknamed himself the Kenyan Kansas Konnection
  • Later changed his nickname

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Chanukkah Done

Tonight was the final night of Chanukkah. I always love seeing the bright glow emanating from the festival of lights. It's wonderful to see the sparkling Santas, the herd of lit deer, and those elaborate snow globe things. I love the irony that the holiday dedicated to the miracle of oil lasting a little longer than they thought it would is celebrated with lavish lights in a world with an energy problem. They honor the holiday hoping for the same miracle. It's cute. I have respect for Christmas too. I understand it's more low-key because it's all about giving and humility, so they have those small 9-bit candleholders. I like it; it fits.

I'm being told I have that backwards. If that's true, then Christians are humongous hypocrites. I'm now being told that Jesus probably hates you for your wasteful hypocrisy. It's like you're pissing on his grave. The Jews celebrate the "festival of lights" in an understated way. It's almost as if they know better than to throw their religion in people's faces.

I would like to congratulate the two families in my neighborhood that actually kept their menorahs lit in the window for all 8 nights this year. I think it's because Chanukkah came early this year (although on the Jewish calendar, it comes the same time every year. Christmas is late this time around). It's the first time anyone went all 8 nights since the Jew Jamboree of 1993. And it's the first time so many houses went all 8 since the Chanukkah Revival of 1987.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Don't Believe It

I've had the good fortune to have the opportunity to obtain a master's degree in history. My time in graduate school has allowed me to critique information more effectively. Put another way, I don't believe everything I hear.

Were the attacks of September 11, 2001 perpetrated by al Qaeda or the U.S. government? I don't know. I'm not going believe something just because the government says so and I'm not going to believe something only because it's the opposite. If I had to guess, I'd say al Qaeda was responsible, but the U.S. government instigated them by doing something beyond merely stationing U.S. military forces in Saudi Arabia and certainly beyond showing American women with exposed navels (does anyone really still think this is what we're fighting over?).

I think there was at least some kind of conspiracy linked to the Kennedy assassination, but then again, chances are so do you (how come you got that one right?).

Did the U.S. government blow up the levees keeping the Gulf of Mexico out of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina? It's certainly possible. They would have a lot to gain. I don't think the Bush administration calculated the level of outrage their lack of compassion would cause, however.

I believe that the arrests and convictions of the Jena 6 were racially motivated. Whether the government conspires to ruin the lives of a good number of black people or whether they just don't care to rectify the wrongs of the past because keeping the status quo is beneficial to the ones on top, I don't know. However, I believe that our society discriminates against black people in ways that none of us can imagine.

Was AIDS created to kill many Africans in order to handcuff Africa and later administered to eradicate gays? I don't know. But the U.S. government was responsible for giving many people AIDS. Look at Arthur Ashe. An eloquent, powerful, and outspoken black man struck down when he contracted AIDS after a blood transfusion.

I believe the U.S. government was fully aware of exactly what was going on during the Holocaust and chose to do nothing.

I don't believe Michael Vick raped and killed that white woman. Wait, what? DOG FIGHTING?! People wanted to lynch him; I just assumed he was accused of raping and killing a white woman. He killed some dogs and people want him killed? Dogs are not people.

I'm not sure that Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman are dead. They could be chilling in Panama for all I know. Then you all owe O.J. an apology. Of course he did plead no contest to beating his first wife, who was black. And no one cared.

I believe elections are fixed to the candidate with the most money. Let’s see, vote your conscious, not for the front runners.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Asbestos Found in the White House

Traces of asbestos have been discovered in the White House. This is largely being blamed for the epidemic of forgetfulness plaguing the Bush administration.

The asbestos is a unique type and poisoning causes a rather curious symptom, which is known as "selective memory" in the scientific community. This unfortunate symptom causes people to forget when they do something illegal, immoral, or unethical.

Alberto Gonzalez had no idea what happened during his tenure as attorney general because of asbestos poisoning, which he contracted through his frequent visits to the White House where he decided which U.S. attorneys would be fired based on political allegiance. Ironically, when congress summoned him to inquire about the politically-motivated firings, it was the asbestos poisoning that saved him, because he couldn't remember a damn thing about it. Interestingly, Albert Gonzalez can recite every line from every episode of Night Court, which he credits as the inspiration for his legal career.

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has a lot of trouble remembering anything that has to do with the word "Iraq." However, he does remember titty-twisting Saddam Hussein in the late 1970s after Hussein wet-willied Rumsfeld before an earlier meeting. Whatever happened to that Saddam guy anyway? Rumsfeld doesn't remember.

Condoleezza Rice doesn't remember much from the last seven years or so. Destroyed tapes of illegal CIA interrogations? Huh? Faulty intelligence regarding Iraq's weapons of mass destruction program? Whaa? What she does remember is the combination to her locker in junior high school.

Hopefully the next president can do something about the asbestos problem.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Nothing Can Save You

On Saturday, CNN showed a woman performing Voodoo rituals in order to give the Miami Dolphins their first win of this season. It didn't work for the thirteenth time. The Bills jumped on the hapless swimming mammals early, going up 31-7 by the early second quarter. The Bills eventually won 38-17.

Trent Edwards didn't throw for many yards. He didn't have to. Two of his four TD passes went to tightend Robert Royal. Lee Evans caught the other two, his only two receptions of the game. Marshawn Lynch was finally back and ran for over 100 yards. Backup Anthony Thomas is out for the year, so Fred Jackson got some work in again this week and also ran for over 100 yards. Safety George Wilson added a fumble recovery for a touchdown.

A Bills win against the hated Dolphins and a Goucher win over hated Catholic in the same week, life is sweet.

The Bills face the Cleveland Browns next weekend, which will make or break their season. The Browns hold the final playoff position at 8-5. The Bills are 7-6. A win gives the Bills the tie-breaker and temporarily the 6th position. A loss ends their playoff hopes. The Bills have been a heart-warming team thus far. No matter what, the Bills will give it their all.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

The Other Four Letter Word

Since 2003 I've been telling everyone that my girlfriend Cara's body was da bomb. My friends just found out this week that I don't have a girlfriend and Cara's body never existed. Now they're telling everyone.

You'd think I'd be humiliated. The last four year of my life were a lie. You'd be wrong. I've been through this before. In fact, guess what I'm doing. No, I'm not hiding from everyone in disgrace, you smartass. I'm questioning my friends' judgment. They just don't want to see me shine. Cara does exist! Her body is smoking! Run for the hills, she's about to explode!

Friday, December 07, 2007

Climate Change Heroism

Environmentalist R. Bare, who is from Poland, has been an outdoorsman and thrill-seeker for many years. We know that as a Pole, R. Bare enjoys cold weather. But there's a problem. The ice caps up in the Arctic are melting because of pollution, so being a Pole, R. Bare will be very sad.

This might not bother a Romanian, but a Pole, R. Bare included, cannot... I can't do this anymore, keeping up a terrible pun with the destruction of our world looming. It's just awful and I'm ashamed. I don't know what's worse, the impending doom of life as we know or my bad play on words.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

The Storm that Came and Went

Whenever there is a snow storm in the DC area one line is usually uttered, "The fallout from this snow storm was much worse in proportion to the storm itself." The fact is that in the DC area, people freak out when there's snow. It's amazing because it snows every year, quite often in fact. We usually have a blizzard every third year or so. Yet, somehow, no one can take. People either drive way too slow or way too fast and it's usually a good design for disaster.

Unfortunately I had to drive in the mess yesterday. But it was well worth it. Goucher faced our main rivals at Catholic University in men's college basketball. It was the opener of the Landmark Conference. It's no secret that throughout this decade Catholic always benefited from favorable referees to a ridiculous amount at home. At one point it was so absurd that it brought me to nearly fight an official as I ran from the stands screaming threats at him. He stopped and turned and continued yelling at him until the police stepped in (who has police at a Division 3 game?). I won't document all of the bad calls the refs make at Catholic here.

Both schools have left their old CAC and moved to this new Landmark Conference, who didn't know that they were supposed to give the game to Catholic. Goucher might have even got a favorable call here or there, if you can believe it and I know that you can't. Goucher has a young and patient team that can show fits of athleticism at certain moments. As usual against Catholic on the road, Goucher got off to a quick start, but Catholic came back to take the lead by halftime.

Catholic stormed out to the big lead in the first ten minutes of the second half. This was typical. Generally Goucher plays Catholic tough in the first half and fades in the second. But this team stormed back, just like last year. Goucher rushed ahead thanks to an amazing behind the back pass on a fast break by #30 (I'm getting old, I hardly know any of the players anymore).

Before the clock was finished, the Catholic faithful pitifully walked out of the gym with their heads up their asses. It was a beautiful sight, like a gentile kid waking up on Christmas, I'd imagine. Oh, sweet vengeance. That's two wins in a row at Catholic. That was so awesome. It made my year. Kiss my ass you Catholic fucks!

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Prayoff Update

The best of 7 Prayoff series to determine which is the one true lord has come down to Game 7, with the series tied at 3. The Game 7 and the series comes down to one factor. Will Jesus come back in 2007?

A few years ago, Pat Robertson claimed on the 700 Club that Jesus would return in 2007, because it was the 40th anniversary of the Six Day war in Israel. In 2008, I will get laid because it's the 15th anniversary of the greatest comeback in NFL hostory when the Buffalo Bills sotrmed back to win in the 1993 Wildcard game down 35-3 to the Houston Oilers. I haven't gotten laid in a bit to the point where A.C. Green is starting to pity me a little.

If Jesus does return within the next month or so, I will accept Pat Robertson's lord as the true one. If he doesn't come back, Pat Robertson must pray to my Jewy, abortion-loving, gay marriage-performing, poverty-caring-about G-d. The year is almost over. I'm on the edge of seat.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

I Got Love For

Here's a short list of groups that I respect and want to show some love for:

Jews, blacks, Chinese, Indians, Koreans, Muslims, the deaf, Hausas, Poles, Tutsis, Asians, Quichuas, Kuwaitis, Australians, Filipinos, Mohicans, Africans, Cherokees, Mexicans, Christians, Arabs, Hutus, Latinos, women, Slovakians, Xhosas, Buddhists, the transgendered, Pakistanis, Cubans, Bulgarians, Zoroastrians, men, Shiites, Ecuadorians, whites, Sufis, New Zealanders, Hindus, Romanians, Cherokees, Sunnis, Europeans, Zulus, Uyghurs, Puerto Ricans, Albinos, Central Americans, Tibetans, Germans, Persians, gays, Japanese, dwarfs, North Americans, Baha'is, lesbians, Britons, the blind, South Americans, islanders, Darfuris, and everyone else.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Sean Taylor

My condolences to Sean Taylor's friends and family.

We have a real problem dealing with death in this country. People do some ridiculous things. I'm not sure where Sean Taylor is now, maybe he's just gone, maybe he's in heaven, or maybe he's in a world completely different from ours, I really have no idea. I do know that, wherever he is, he doesn't give a shit about your Facebook profile tribute to him.

I can't begin to understand why a person would "honor" Sean Taylor on their Facebook profile. It doesn't make any sense. He's not going to see your profile, especially if the "Afterlife" isn't one of your networks. You're not really informing anyone about this great person that you've lost, because, well, it was a national news story and you have no idea whether or not he was a good person.

Some fans have said that the death of Sean Taylor was like losing a family member. Really? It's like losing your mother? You know what's more like losing a family member? ACTUALLY LOSING A FAMILY MEMBER! When your mother dies are you going to say, "It's like losing Sean Taylor." That's crazy.

Fans at the Skins game held posters honoring #21. I thought that was poignant. They weren't remembering Sean Taylor, they were memorializing their fallen free safety. How could they remember Sean Taylor anyway, they didn't know him.

The same day Sean Taylor died, 35 people were killed in an attack in Iraq. Almost no one in America cared. These people in Iraq did nothing wrong. They were simply victims of an invasion perpetrated by our country. Yet, we mourn the loss of an entertainer as if he were family. There's something wrong with that. How about a little perspective here? This country is insane.

Rest in peace.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Here on Earth

Skins safety Sean Taylor was shot and killed earlier in the week. The Skins hoped to honor his memory with a dramatic win to cap a traumatic week. That's not the way things work here on Earth.

The first snap the Buffalo Bills ran, the Skins gave tribute to Taylor by only playing ten men of defense. Somewhere, Sean Taylor was screaming, "Put another guy in the game!" The Bills third string running back, Fred Jackson, gained 22 yards (almost 21, Sean Taylor's number).

The Skins got out to a 16-5 lead over my beloved Bills. I've admired coach Dick Jauron's ability to stay level-headed. It paid off this week. Down eleven with his offense not moving the ball much, time after time, he elected to kick field goals on 4th and short. The strategy brought the Bills back to within two at 16-14.

The Bills defense was the same old bend-but-don't-break group. This was partly due to a play that didn't go their way in the first quarter. Skins tight end Chris Cooley clearly caught a pass and then fumbled. The Bills recovered. It was erroneously called an incomplete pass. This led to a long Skins drive and an eventual field goal. the Bills defenders couldn't catch their breath until halftime.

The Bills' ball stoppers managed to corral Clinton Portis with a minute to go in the game. Trent Edwards began the Bills' drive deep in their own territory. It was a long pass to Josh Reed over the middle that put the Bills in position to kick a field goal. The ball was thrown in Sean Taylor's area. Reed caught it surrounded by four Skins.

Rian Lindell nailed a 51 yard field goal, which was his fifth of the day. Except, Joe Gibbs had called timeout before the play began. The teams set up again. Another timeout was called. Gibbs had called a second straight timeout, which is illegal. A fifteen-yard penalty was called on the Skins. It wasn't the first coaching mistake Gibbs has made since his return. He's a habitual bad-decision-maker. Lindell knocked the shorter kick through the uprights. I went crazy!

After a couple of tense moments involving the kick return (I remember the forward pass game against the Titans in the playoffs a few years ago) and a couple plays, the Bills ran away with a win to climb to 6-6.

After the game, Joe Gibbs said that he didn't know the two timeout rule and had asked the official if he could call another timeout. He said he thought the answer was yes, but said he wasn't blaming the official. That's like saying, "It's his fault, but I'm not blaming him." Then Gibbs said he guessed he should take responsibility for making a decision that "probably" cost his team the game. You don't have to guess, there's no "probably" about it. It was simply classless on Gibbs part.

It was personally a big win, because I live in the DC area. The Bills play at home against the Dolphins next week. It could be a trap game against a 0-12 team, but they're our hated rival. At the moment, things are looking better.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

The Lowest Point

It was June 1999. I begged my grandpa to take me to the NBA Finals where my beloved Knicks would face the San Antonio Spurs. The Kncks were an 8th seed heading into the playoffs of the lockout-shortened season. They made a gallant run to become the first 8th seed to make the Finals.

Grandpa wouldn't get the tickets. I thought it might be a money problem, so I asked my mom if she would pay for at least my ticket and she said yes. Still, Grandpa wouldn't do it. "They have a good young team. They'll be back next year. We can go then." I just didn't understand. We both knew there were no sure-shots in sports. Why take the chance? This would be a great memory, me and my grandpa at the NBA Finals, rooting for my team after they made the most improbable run in NBA history.

I didn't get to go. The Knicks lost four games to one. In late October, my grandpa died. We would never go.

The Knicks made it to the Eastern Conference Finals in 2000. I skipped the prom to watch Game 6 on TV. The Knicks lost and were eliminated from the playoffs that night. The Knicks lost in the first round in 2001, the last time the team the won a playoff game. Early next season, Jeff Van Gundy walked away. An era ended.

Perhaps Grandpa and Jeff Van Gundy knew something and that's why both left when they did. It has been a disastrous run since. The Knicks have made the playoffs once in that time, losing in four games and winning none against the New Jersey Nets in 2003. High priced so-called stars have come and gone. They all epitomized the stereotype of the modern athlete, selfish, arrogant, and paid. Of course, there was that period where the Knicks had about eight power forwards on the roster, all with similar skills. They haven't had a point guard worth a damn in that time, except for Isiah Thomas. Unfortunately, Thomas hasn't played. Instead he's tied up the franchise and hid it in the basement. it almost makes you miss Scott Layden. Did I just say that?

From Larry Johnson, Allan Houston, Marcus Camby, and Patrick Ewing, the Knicks now feature, some overweight center who can't rebound, a power forward who may never have thrown an intentional pass in his life, a small forward who taunts teams that are much better than his, and a point guard who would rather be somewhere else and has actually gone there before. These aren't the Knicks that I remember. These are an unlikable bunch of losers.

The lowest point came Thursday night against the Boston Celtics. It's been coming, but the 104-59 finish cemented the descent. The Knicks actually managed to win Friday night, coming back from down 16 at home to the juggernaut that is the Milwaukee Bucks. Some wondered if they had been too presumptuous in canning the Knicks after the Boston performance. Make no mistake, Friday night's win was like spraying air freshener over a big pile of shit.

Grandpa, Jeff Van Gundy, please help!