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Interview With Susan Hallums on The Jawa Report

Please stop by Dr. Rusty Shackelford’s site to read the first in a series of posts regarding an interview he had with the family of Roy Hallums, an American civilian contractor who was abducted from his temporary home in Iraq on November 1, 2004.  The maintstream media has not been focused on this story, one that needs our attention.  The Hallums family is still facing this situation on a daily basis and can use our support and prayers.  Roy particularly needs our prayers to get him through what has to be an experience none of us can even comprehend. 

Please stop by the Free Roy site and lend your support to Roy and his family.


Another Kerr(e)y Flip-Flopper

In an effort to emulate his idol, John Kerry, former U.S. senator and Dem presidential hopeful Bob Kerrey can’t seem to make up his mind about running for New York mayor:

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Former U.S. senator and Democratic presidential candidate Bob Kerrey said on Monday it was "unlikely" he would run for New York mayor, backing off comments he made in recent days.


Kerrey, who is president of New York’s New School University, mused in an interview with The New York Times on Saturday whether he should enter the race for City Hall because he was so dissatisfied with Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

"This past Saturday I answered a question from a reporter who asked if I was seriously considering becoming a candidate for mayor of New York City, and I said I was," Kerrey, who was a member of the national commission that investigated the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, said in a statement.


"It is unlikely I will enter this race as a candidate."


But the man who admitted four years ago that a unit he led in the Vietnam war had killed unarmed civilians left the possibility of a run open, saying, "I intend to make a final decision and announcement later this week."

In other words, there’s a special on FLIP-FLOPS at Wal-Mart.

The possibility of a nationally-known Democrat running against Bloomberg had New York’s political establishment aflutter over the weekend.

Bloomberg’s Democrat rivals have been dogged by criticism they lack the vision to challenge the billionaire mayor. The leading Democrat — former Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer, who leads in some polls — has been relentlessly dogged over controversial comments he made that the 1999 police shooting of an unarmed African immigrant was not a crime.

Other Democrats seeking a run against Bloomberg have performed poorly in polls.

Kerrey told The New York Times on Saturday that he was disillusioned with Bloomberg’s efforts to gain federal funding to guard the city against another attack and that the mayor was spending too much time trying to get support for a new stadium as part of the city’s bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games.


"The political analysts were starting to yawn at this race and (Kerrey) added a little juice," said Douglas Muzzio, Baruch College professor of public affairs. "None of the four Democrat candidates have offered anything approaching a compelling vision to get rid of the mayor."

He said Kerrey’s announcement that he was unlikely to run showed "sanity had prevailed."

Sanity and Democrat in the same article.  I’d acquiesce and say that I would agree that sanity had prevailed, but I’ll log on tomorrow and Kerrey will be running for sure.  FLIP FLOP!

Bloomberg’s campaign manager Stuart Loeser said Kerrey had previously praised Bloomberg’s tenure in City Hall.

A spokesman for Ferrer did not return phone calls.

I think my hubby’s right.  It’s time to shred this guy’s "Nebraska residency" card!  No doubt, and no flip-floppin’ here!

basil's blog linked with Breakfast: 4/19/2005
10 Years Ago: The Oklahoma City Bombing

Ten years ago, on the morning of April 19, 2005, Timothy McVeigh parked a rented Ryder truck with explosives in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building and, at 9:02am, a massive explosion occurred which sheared the entire north side of the building, killing 168 people. The site now houses a memorial to those who lost their lives due to this senseless tragedy. 

The numbers truly speak for themselves:

168 people killed

19 children killed

1 rescuer killed

850 people injured

85 rescuers suffer minor injuries

30 children orphaned

219 children lost at least one parent

462 people left homeless

7000 people left without a workplace

12,384 participated in rescue, recovery and support

387,000 estimated number of people in OKC who knew someone killed or injured in the bombing (roughly a third of the population)

190,000 estimated number of people attending funerals for bombing victims (19% of the population of OKC)

Over 300 buildings were damaged or destroyed

More than 1000 people survived

Source:  Governor Frank Keating’s office, 1995

Hopefully those whose lives were altered forever have been able to heal some over the last 10 years.  It is evident, when you look around the Internet, there are still many supposed "Americans" who empathize with the likes of Timothy McVeigh and blast the very ideals this country was founded upon.  May what we learned this tragic day keep us on an ever-ready watch for this kind of hatred and may we stop it before the hatred turns into another bloodbath.

Cowboy Poetry Week

You heard it first, right here, ya’ll.  This week is Cowboy Poetry Week.  You think I’m like a horse needin’ to go out to pasture?  Not me.  Take off your hat and kick off your boots because Cowboy Poetry Week is here!

And to honor this celebration, I bring to you a most amazing poem that I’m sure will bring back fond memories for many of you regarding baths as a youngun.  I especially like the part about the squealing hog.  Reminds me of the movie "Deliverance."  Enjoy, ya’ll!

Ma’s Old Galvanized Washtub

Did you ever take your Saturday Bath
An’ try to wash an’ scrub,
While squattin’ down on your haunches
In a galvanized washing tub?
If not, then you ain’t missed a thing.
But now I’m telling’ you what’s right.
I done it ’til I wuz almost grown
An’ every doggone Saturday night!
In summer it was bad enuff
But, in winter it was rough.
Spreading papers, buckets and kettles
An all of that sort of stuff.
Getting ready for that ordeal
Was only half the rub
Of takin’ a bath on Saturday night
In a galvanized washin’ tub.
Did you ever stand there stripped to the skin,
A wood stove bakin’ your hide,
A dreadin’ to put your dern foot in
Fer Fear you’d be burned alive?
Finally you’d git th’ temperature right
An’ into th’ tub you’d crawl.
That cold steel ‘ud touch your back
An’ you’d squeal like a fresh stuck hog!
Then you’d get outa the tub next to the stove
And stand there drippin’ and shakin’.
The front of your body is freezing to death
While the back of your body is bakin’.
Shiverin’ ‘n’ shakin’, burnin’ ‘n’ bakin’,
That’s the awful price I had to pay.
That awful ordeal’ll haunt me’
Until I’m old and gray.
I ain’t done yet?there’s something’ else
That I’ve been wantin’ to say.’
I wuz the youngest of all us kids
Who bathed on Saturday.
We all bathed accordin’ to age
And I fell last in order,
Which meant I had to wash myself
In their dad-blamed dirty water.
Now, I’m a guy (gal) o’clean habits
And believe in a bath a week.
It helps to keep me healthy
And freshen my physique.
But if I had my druthers,
I’d rather eat a bug
Than to take my Saturday bath
In a galvanized washin’ tub!

Author Unknown

The Iraqi Civil War? Nah, Just In Asshatland

From the Washington Ho’s:

BAGHDAD, April 16 — A group of masked, armed men believed to be Sunni extremists reportedly is threatening to kill a group of Shiite Muslim hostages in a central Iraqi town unless Shiite residents leave their homes, according to a police officer and Shiite Muslim officials.

Many details of the apparently still-evolving situation in Mada’in, a town about 30 southeast of Baghdad, remain unclear, including the number of alleged hostages, how and when they were seized, and how Iraqi police and armed forces are responding.

Abu Musab Zarqawi and his merry band of goatfuckers are once again trying to foment inter-denominational violence in hopes of sparking a civil war in Iraq.  Unfortunately for Mr. Zarcameljockey, the vast majority of Iraqis aren’t buying his particular brand of chickenshit.  Now, you have choices.  You can believe what you are fed through the media, or you can believe what is being written by someone who actually lives there.

Via Iraq The Model:

I’m sure that some "experts" will celebrate this incident and consider it a spark that will ignite the civil war fire they have been hallucinating about.
What such "experts" always fail to notice is that the conflict in Iraq is taking place between the people, the government and the coalition on one side and the extremists and remaining Ba’athists on the other side. It is NOT a people vs. people conflict; it never had and it will never be like that.

I really don’t blame people who live outside Iraq for believing the "experts"; they didn’t live here and they depend on the news to build their opinions.
But I live in Iraq and seen almost every city in it, so I know how thinks work and I know what the people think.
This time, the pathetic terrorists are trying to make it look like a sectarian conflict; it is NOT.

The Iraqis are free.  The Useful Idiots of the world can choose to believe that they are being brutalized at the hands of the Coalition, and that the new, freely elected Iraqi government is a puppet of the U.S.

But not a damn one of them will ever bother to read the likes of Iraq The Model.  Nor would a single one of them have the guts to go to Iraq and see for themselves.  They will, however, march in the streets with megaphones.

And call it courage.

cross posted at Vince Aut Morire

LaCabanna Lodge
I got a very nice email from Linda Stack, owner of the LaCabanna Lodge on Glen Lake, NY.  If you own Rachael Ray’s Open House Cookbook, you have already seen pictures of this beautiful Adirondack cabin.  If you don’t own this cookbook, you should check out Linda’s website:  http://www.RusticLogCabin.com.  It looks like a perfect place to experience the Adirondack region!  

Cooking Rocks! Rachael Ray 30-Minute Meals for Kids

Anyone who knows me also knows how much I enjoy watching Rachael Ray’s show "30 Minute Meals."  While I was shopping with my kids, my son saw her book "Cooking Rocks!  Rachael Ray 30 Minute Meals for Kids."  He actually talked me into buying it.  Okay, so he didn’t have to talk long, but he convinced me that it would be a good idea to get it and we could cook together.

The book is very simple, and its approach is very appealing to kids (cartoon images of Rachael Ray for one).  It’s divided by age group, so it is easier to determine which meals you should pick out to prepare.

I asked my son to pick out his favorite recipe for me to share.  Here it is:

Cheese Fries

1 sack frozen french fries, any brand or shape, prepared to package instructions

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp all-purpose flour

1 + 1/2 cups whole milk

2 + 1/2 cups shredded yellow cheddar cheese (approx 10 oz)

1/4 cup ketchup (about 3 squirts)

Read the package directions to see what temperature to set the oven at, and have your GH (Grown-up Helper) preset the oven.

Have your GH put the fries on a cookie sheet and put that in the oven.  Read the package directions to see how long to cook the fries and set the oven timer.  While fries are baking, have a GH place a saucepan on the stove and heat it over medium heat.  Add butter and melt it.  add the flour and stir.  Cook butter and flour together for 1 minute or so.  This is called roux (sounds like Roo, Tigger and Pooh Bear’s friend), and it helps to thicken up sauces.

Use a whisk to stir as you pour the milk into the pot.  Keep stirring until the milk gets thicker.  Use a wooden spoon or heat-safe spatula to stir in the cheese.  When all of the cheese melts, take the sauce off the heat and stir in 3 squirts ketchup.  This is your SECRET ingredient.  when everyone asks what you put in your cheese sauce that makes it taste so good, just say milk and cheese, you can NEVER tell what secret ingredients you add!  Tell your GH to keep the secret, too, or they can never help you again!

Pour the cheese sauce over the fries or serve the sauce on the side if you like dipping better.

Bradley rates this recipe at 4 out of a possible 5 frying pans.  To quote Alton Brown, he says "These fries are good eats, Mommy!"

Musing My Patriotism

As I was driving home from work today, bumper-to-bumper traffic making that drive a bit longer, my mind started to wonder.  It started when I saw a bumper sticker on the truck in front of me - a simple one.  "Proud to be American."  I would say to anyone today that I’ve always been proud to be American and extremely patriotic.  But today I just had to think back at some of the milestones in my life that paved my trip here.

The first memory I have of patriotism was in Mr. Dvorak’s second grade class.  This boy kept getting into trouble because he would remain seated and refuse to say The Pledge of Allegiance with the class.  He told Mr. Dvorak that his mom told him he couldn’t participate because he was a Jehovah’s Witness.  At this point, Mr. Dvorak promptly sent him to the principal, thinking it was merely an excuse.  Mr. Dvorak got to keep his job (although he would have promptly been fired today, I’m sure) and we watched this kid sit on the floor during the Pledge of Allegiance every day for the rest of the school year.

I also remember very vividly my dad telling me about life in the military.  He told me a story of fate, about not being able to go on a communications interception mission he was assigned to do (the reasons escape me now) and how the entire team was killed in action within the first 48 hours.  I remember being so proud of my dad and how lucky I was to be born because of fate, not because he was afraid to fight for his country.

I remember when Ronald Reagan got shot.  I was in the library at school when it happened and some of the teachers running in with a look of horror on their faces.  I remember watching the TV the whole library period and I especially remember the teacher yelling at some students who were making fun of the President’s situation.  I was mad, too, and was happy that someone shut them up.

I remember being asked to sing the National Anthem at a basketball game in high school.  I think back to how nervous I was (it was just me - no piano, no music), and clearly remember choking up toward the end.  I was slightly off key for one or two notes, trying not to cry.  A couple of kids made fun of me.  I didn’t tell them why I missed those notes because it was something 16 year olds didn’t really brag about.  Except to one of my mentors - my music teacher.  He listened and said he was proud of me, but looked very sad.  He said something my father said before.  He said that kids in my generation didn’t know anything about war.  That it almost seemed that they needed a war in order to understand what being an American is all about.  A very prophetic discussion, I would say, and one I’m sure my son or daughter will never have with a school teacher.

I was so excited when I was old enough to register to vote.  I did so within days of turning 18.  I was a senior in high school.  I could share my excitement with my "geek friends" (yeah, we all had our noses buried in books), and they were jealous that I could vote and they couldn’t.  I also clearly remember that I registered as an Independent (gak!).  As I look back, my parents - who were registered Democrats - probably kept me from taking the full step over to the Republican party.  It didn’t take me long, though, once I moved out. 

I remember Desert Shield….then Desert Storm.  I remember the Heartland Heroes celebration that commenced when our troops came home.  It was at Rosenblatt Stadium and it was filled to capacity.  I remember being there with the company I worked for.  I also remember being incredibly intoxicated, but weeping openly while they played all the patriotic music.  I saw a lot of patriots that day.  But many were fair-weather patriots.  People that you would see a week later who were blasting the war, the troops, and pretty much anything else they could bitch about.  I was pissed.  Especially at my parents for their opinions on the war.  But they were Democrats and I wasn’t.


Vince Aut Morire linked with Nicely Done
The White Trash ABCs

Hi ya’ll,

I figger I’d share with you the learnin’ I gave my cuzins Beulla Mae and Sadie Lou.  Theyze both have trouble amemberin’ their letters and I need to help them so they can figger out the menu at McDonald’s without askin for that special menu with the photos of the food on it.

Anyhow…hopin’ this helps you learn your letters and that it takes you up that memery lane about your heratige:

A - Al Bundy

B - Bolonie

C - Crimpin Iron (for those white hot date nights!)

D - Dungarees

E - Eight Track (I dun spelled it out so you’d get it)

F - Fluffernutter

G - Goober Grape

H - Headcheese (with Wonder bread and mayo..bodatious!)

I - Inbread (my cuzin’s dark secret..no, my other cuzin)

J - Joey Buttafucco (he has a butt in his name)

K - Kool-aid

L - Lita Ford (Sadie Lou’s faverite singer)

M - Mad Dog 20/20 (my favorite bevirage)

N - Nuckle Head (my dumass dog’s name)

O - Outhouse

P - Pork Rinds (mmmmmmm!)

Q - aQua Net (cain’t figger a Q word out - but we know ’bout Aqua Net)

R - rollers (hot or not)

S - Spears (Britney, that is…all preggers and all)

T - trailer - my dream home!

U - Under the trailer (where we go when we see a tornado)

V - Vaseline (white trash loob)

W - Weenies and Beenies (alright, the B was used already)

X - X-ray vision glasses (my ole man Cletus says they works)

Y - Yeti (my ex-ole man!)

Z - Zingers (a right tasty end to a meal)

Visit all my other white trash folk and ya’ll come back now, ya hear?

The White Trash Wednesday Blogroll:

The Fire’s a Burnin’

Beth is making me eat vegan food for a week due to my post on a woman with a tiger-suckling mission.  So, are Twinkies considered vegan?  How about Diet Dr. Pepper?  heheheh

Don’t Just Stun that Criminal, Mr. Policeman, SHOOT HIM, it’s SAFER!

So I’m listening to the morning radio show as I’m getting ready for work this morning, and they were talking about a meeting taking place in Omaha tonight regarding the police’s use of taser guns and an open discussion regarding safety concerns.  My first thoughts were "um, okay…" and then it suddenly made sense.  The radio guys stated that Nebraska’s ACLU president Tim Butz (no, really, that’s his name!!!) would be there to present the ACLU’s concerns about whether tasers were safe to use in police interactions.  Of course, the Nebraska ACLU hid behind their Momma’s skirt and touted the event as "A Powerful Conversation:  Community Forum in Omaha on Police Use of Tasers."  How politically correct.

Apparently police department taser use is somewhat of a hot topic here in Nebraska.  KHAS-TV out of Hastings, NE reported just yesterday on the subject.

I do think there’s a bit of confusion on what the police think about the use of tasers, at least in this article.  Here’s paragraph one:

Tasers are the topic of conversation across the nation. More police departments use them and said they are saving lives, but many people say they are lethal.Taser technology is shocking the nation.Touted as one of the safest non-lethal use of force options, police say they are saving lives.

However, toward the end of the article, the author writes:

One reason gun shops like Old Market Firearms do not stock them. Even some police departments are not convinced they are safe.

The Hastings Police chief shares that they have seen a significant decrease in the numbers of injuries to police officers caused by subjects who were combative or resistant.  During training, Hastings police officers are encouraged to take a hit so they understand how the taser works and what a person will feel when hit by the taser’s 50,000 volts. 

Grand Island’s taser trainer Sergeant Steve Rathman said most officers opt to experience it.

"If they know what it feels like when they are exposed to it, I feel they are less likely to use it haphazardly," said Rathman.

There have been no deaths linked to tasers in Nebraska. 

"They are designed to save lives and prevent injury, and that is what they are doing," said Chief Thoren.

In 2004 the Hastings Police Department has used the taser 50 times, but no one has required medical attention.The Grand Island police said they have used the taser more than 20 times.

It is apparent, however, that there is some national knee-jerking going on (courtesy of the ACLU, perhaps?).  Last week, a man died in California, prompting the police department to suspend the use of tasers. 

The ACLU in Nebraska states that they are receiving complaints about the tool.  Hmmmmm….I wonder if these complaints come right after the "subject" posts bail?

Here’s where the ACLU’s uncovers their agenda (not surprising):

It is incapacitating for 5 seconds, but other than the possible slight redness and itch there is no further injury. Yet the A.C.L.U. in Nebraska questions the safety.

"We have received complaints from several places across the state about the inappropriate use of tasers," said Nebraska A.C.L.U. Executive Director Tim Butz.

Under fire is when police are calling on the tool.

"Police departments that have tasers are allowing their use at a low level of involvement," said Butz.

Police are trained that the use of a taser is at the level of chemical mace - just below striking a subject. 

"These things are potentially lethal," Butz said.

The ACLU said they will continue to gather information supporting their concerns and may present their concerns to the legislature next year.

I dunno, maybe it’s just me, but if the use of tasers in law enforcement lowers the incident rate of police injury and allows a policeman to gain control over a combative "subject" I’m all for it.  For safety’s sake, would Mr. BUTZ rather have the police officer use their gun?   

You can read the entire article here.

MY Vast Right Wing Conspiracy linked with WTW Round the Reader
National Library Week

The week of April 10-16 is National Library Week.  Back in late February, I posted a story about our Omaha Public Libraries on Eric’s website and their decision to allow any child, of any age, to check out movies without parental knowledge, even if they are rated "R."  Here’s the article:

Want your 7-year old to watch R-rated movies? Come to Omaha!

I live in a Red state, but appear to live in a Blue City…sometimes.  On February 20, 2005, the Omaha World Herald printed an article outlining a new policy the Omaha Public Libraries initiated allowing all children to check out any movie they wish, unless the parent placed a "block" on their card.  This is a departure from the original policy of only allowing those children 8th grade and younger to check out material marked "juvenile."  The Library Board made this decision, stating that it is "up to the parents" to decide what their children can or cannot watch. 

Fast forward to the Omaha World Herald on 2/26/05…."Library to Revisit Policy on Kids, R-rated Films." 

Here’s what the Library Director, Rivkah Sass, had to say: 

"Sass expressed concerns Friday about putting too many restrictions in place, particularly on the basis of a private movie rating system."

So, in other words, even though every other venue offering R-rated movies restricts viewing or checking out of said movies for those under the age of 17, the library feels like it is above that because the rating system for movies is private?  I thought the library was a place that kids were supposed to go to in order to explore and learn, not a place where they are exposed to violence, bloodshed, profanity and nudity.  What this comes down to is a misuse of funds and laziness.  The library system is looking for ways to cut costs and what better way than to put children into harm’s way and blame it on parent’s inability to monitor their children 24/7.

Interestingly enough, the reason they are "revisiting" this policy (not reverting to the old policy, mind you) is due to the public outcry regarding their decision.  My hope is that the heat is turned up enough that they are required to return to the original policy of restricting checkout.

One thing I will say about the Omaha Public Library - they have not yet bowed to the American Library Association’s recommendation to pull Internet filtering programs off of juvenile computers within libraries.  Here’s an excerpt from the ALA’s statement on filtering:

"The use in libraries of software filters to block constitutionally protected speech is inconsistent with the United States Constitution and federal law and may lead to legal exposure for the library and its governing authorities. The American Library Association affirms that the use of filtering software by libraries to block access to constitutionally protected speech violates the Library Bill of Rights."

Here’s the policy in the Omaha Public Library.  In a nutshell, it states that computers in the areas designated for minors would have filtering on them, in order to reduce the amount of exposure juveniles would have to content that they should not see (they are clear that it wouldn’t eliminate the material entirely, which anyone using filters understands), but greatly reduces the risk of juveniles seeing pornographic material.  In light of their position on audio-visual, I wonder how long it will be before the library board in Omaha decides that they should conform to this recommendation?  They are allowing full access for children to any audio-visual materials, even if it is inappropriate, why not porn on the Internet?

It will be interesting for parents here in Omaha to follow this story.  One thing still troubles me, however.  If the Omaha Public Libraries revert to their original policy of restricting access to audio-visual materials for those 8th grade and younger, it still allows a 9th or 10th grader to check out material a parent may want to view prior to their child checking it out.  I think I have the best solution of all - no library card in our household.  I’ll buy off of Amazon.com before I subject my children to the lax, non-family focused values of the Omaha Public Library.

As it has been awhile, I wanted to provide an update on the actions of the Omaha Public Libraries.


Buy A Gun Day!

Now this is a holiday I can groove on.  The artist formerly known as Aaron the Liberal Slayer is promoting Buy a Gun Day on April 15th.

I like that, I like that ALOT!

So take that money you loaned the gubmint for a year with no interest, also known as a "tax refund" and get out purchase some firepower. 

As for us, we have our babies:



Not pictured are the hunting tools, two rifles and a shotgun.

cross posted at Vince Aut Morire.

Happy Anniversary, Mr. NeoCon…..

…Happy Anniversary, to you!

Congratulations, Gordon, on a GREAT milestone! 

Murder Continues…

We have all been following the Terri Schiavo case very closely in recent months, but Raven points out in a recent post that euthanasia has been occurring regularly in this country - multiple cases have also been logged that allow family members to make decisions that are against the wishes of the patient.  In Raven’s post, it is a case of a granddaughter wanting to kill off her grandma due to what seems to be "inconvenience."  And the judicial system favors her. 

In a country where convicted murders get to live out their life awaiting punishment, you would think every day citizens who want to live would have it easy.

Ironic, isn’t it?

Update:  …an update courtesy of Beth.  I’m so sensitive to the subject I felt compelled to post on it, but am with Beth - I don’t think there’s anything else to say about this particular case. 

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