Archive for May, 2006

This Is Going a Bit Far

Wednesday, May 31st, 2006

A husband in Malaysia is recovering from surgery to reattach the penis he cut off last week. Seems he was trying to prove to his wife that he wasn’t having an affair. Isn’t there a better way to do that?

Why Couldn’t He Head Up the EPA?

Tuesday, May 30th, 2006

Bush’s new Treasury Secretary, Henry Paulson, is the outgoing Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs, which seems to be the go-to company for presidential appointments and political candidates.

Speculation that Paulson would take over from Snow increased after Joshua Bolten, a former Goldman Sachs executive who had worked with Paulson and was leading the effort to find a replacement, became the new White House chief of staff.

Robert Rubin, one of Paulson’s predecessors, served as Treasury secretary in the Clinton administration, and Jon Corzine, another Goldman Sachs chairman, served as a U.S. senator from New Jersey and is now governor of that state.

But the really interesting thing about Mr. Paulson is that he also serves as chairman of the Nature Conservancy.

Paulson was known on Wall Street for his dedicated support of environmental causes. Earlier this year, he made a gift of $100 million in Goldman stock to a family foundation dedicated to conservation and environmental education. Even after that gift, Paulson has a net worth estimated at more than $500 million.

Paulson, who was known to favor bird-watching in New York’s Central Park to playing golf, is chairman of the Nature Conservancy and the chairman emeritus of the Peregrine Fund.

Last year Goldman Sachs donated 680,000 acres in Chile to the Wildlife Conservation Society.

We’d likely be better off if he were in charge of environmental policy.

He Has a Point

Tuesday, May 30th, 2006

US Rep. Joe Knollenberg (R-MI) wonders just how much money the FBI should spend trying to dig up Jimmy Hoffa. I’m a big fan of Cold Case Files, and, yeah, it would be cool if they could solve the Hoffa case after all these years. But aside from the entertainment value for crime junkies, what would be the point? The two men who were scheduled to meet with Hoffa the day he disappeared are dead. It’s likely that the killer has also gone on to his or her — uh — reward.

What do y’all think? Is it worth the time and effort?

Bush Signs Ban on Military Funeral Protests…

Monday, May 29th, 2006

…and while I understand the sentiment behind the bill, I think it’s unconstitutional. That’s based on my layperson’s understanding of free speech; Wheeler, feel free to weigh in with the expert’s opinion.

The bill targets Fred Phelps and his minions from the Westboro Baptist “Church”, who have graduated from picketing the funerals of AIDS patients and victims of gay-bashings to demonstrating at military funerals with hateful signs and bullhorns.

Apparently Fred is too much even for the folks at the Free Republic, who are usually quite “free” (excuse the pun) with their homophobic comments (Pam Spaulding at Pam’s House Blend sometimes dives into the swamp there to bring back some of the most colorful ones). A freeper group protested Fred’s most recent funeral appearance.

I guess the one good thing about Fred is that he unites people from across the political spectrum in a mass outpouring of disgust at his bigotry. It’s just too bad we didn’t get this upset when they were picketing at the funerals of Matthew Shepard and Billy Jack Gaither.

Monday Funny

Monday, May 29th, 2006

Brothel owners in the Australian state of Victoria are petitioning for an exemption from the new ban on smoking in the workplace because:

“People smoke when they drink, and people smoke when they fornicate,” [Australian Adult Entertainment Industry] association representative William Albon said. “These smoking laws are going to drive women back onto the streets courtesy of the health minister.”

I Hate Computers!

Sunday, May 28th, 2006

Not really, but I’m not a happy camper right now. I took the laptop to Best Buy on Friday because the AC power connection wasn’t working properly. Of course it’s one of those repairs where the computer has to be shipped off to the Geek Squad. Instead of saying, “Yes, please send it today, and while you’re at it, please back up all my data files,” I said, “No, I’ll take it home and back up my files, and then I’ll bring it back next week.”

This clearly tempted fate beyond its ability to resist. Friday night Windows crashed, and even after spending two hours running the “repair” function, it still won’t work. So I’m sitting in Georgia with no laptop, just hoping that the Geek Squad guys can work their magic next week and at least recover my files. Which include my email address book and my mystery novel, with no backup of this week’s work. Aaaarrrrggghh!

The one tiny ray of sunshine in all this mess is the extended service plan. If the Geek Squad can’t fix the problem, I get a new computer. Again. That would make the third one in three years.

Happy Holiday Weekend

Friday, May 26th, 2006

We’re off to Six Flags and then a visit with my parents. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend. This Memorial Day, let’s keep in mind all the servicepeople who have given their time and even their lives for this country. It’s my prayer that those who are deployed now will soon be home with their families.

Hayden Confirmed In Lopsided Vote

Friday, May 26th, 2006

Specter and Feingold voted against him. Here’s the breakdown.

Capitol Police Still Investigating Report of Gunfire In Rayburn Building

Friday, May 26th, 2006

This is what happens when I leave the house for a while. I’ve been listening to MSNBC on the satellite radio, and it sounds like the police are using, as they put it, “an abundance of caution” in shutting down buildings and searching for evidence of shots fired. That seems like a smart move to me.

It’s a bit creepy to realize that we were staying in a hotel just on the other side of the Capitol only a couple of days ago. Leave it to us to miss the excitement…

Senate Passes Immigration Bill

Friday, May 26th, 2006

Now it goes to the House for what may be acrimonious negotiations. The Senate approach is fairly comprehensive, but many in the House want only punitive measures. Denny Hastert has a policy of making sure the only bills that come up for a vote are those supported by a majority of Republicans; he doesn’t want anything to pass with obvious bipartisan backing. Of course, this means not only that Democratic House members get almost no say in legislation, but that their constituents have no voice in our supposedly representative government. But that’s another post in itself.

I predict lots of posturing and nasty rhetoric. Oh, goody…