Monday, July 31, 2006

Bush Administration May Have Violated 26 Statutes

If the Democrats take back the House in November, Bush and company may be facing Watergate-like hearings. A draft summary of report from the House Judiciary Committee Democrats, written by Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI) says, "The misconduct I have found is not only serious, but widespread."

Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo has posted an advanced copy of the Conyers report.

S. D. Gov. Proclamation: 'Pray For Rain'

In his continuing effort to legislate behavior, South Dakota Governor Mike Rounds proclaimed the week of July 24-30, 2006, a "Week to Pray for Rain."

“Current extreme drought conditions across a large portion of South Dakota have people asking what they can do to help,” said Gov. Rounds. “We are a strong people and all can provide help in many ways, whether actually fighting the fires, providing assistance to the crews, or joining together in the power of prayer.”

Part of the proclamation states:
Whereas many of our rural communities are heavily dependent upon agriculture to sustain their markets and local communities, and many South Dakotans could face wildfire danger if moisture conditions do not improve in the next few weeks, it is appropriate to urge all citizens to join together to pray for rain in our great state of South Dakota.

Gov. Rounds signed legislation in March banning nearly all abortions in South Dakota, making it a crime for doctors to perform an abortion unless the procedure was necessary to save the woman’s life. The law made no exception for cases of rape or incest. It was to become law on July 1, but opponents gathered enough signatures to delay it and to let voters decide in November whether the ban should take effect.

A Washington Post poll shows voters are against the ban:
The statewide survey of 800 registered voters found 47 percent opposed the strict ban, while 39 percent favored it. The remaining 14 percent were undecided. The poll had a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

The Donut Hole

Remember how the Republicans all hyped that wonderful Medicare Part D drug plan and the wonderful things it would do for seniors? We wonder what the Republicans have to say about this Washington Post article:

The calls are starting to come in from shocked or angry seniors. They have just learned that their Medicare drug plans are maxing out on early coverage and that they must now spend $2,850 from their own pockets before coverage will resume.

"I can't pay for my medications," one man told Howard Houghton of the Fairfax Area Agency on Aging the other day. "What do I do?"

Over the next five months, several million Americans with high medicine costs could find themselves in a similar bind. The gap in insurance, popularly called the doughnut hole, is an unusual provision in most of the private plans offered in Medicare's new Part D prescription drug program. Advocates for the elderly say it is misunderstood and problematic.

"There's nothing sweet about the doughnut hole," said Deene Beebe, spokeswoman for the New York-based Medicare Rights Center.

The program was designed to give all participants a certain level of insurance and to protect elderly and disabled recipients with chronic or catastrophic illnesses from huge prescription expenses. To afford those two goals, Part D's designers built in an annual period during which individuals have to pay for medicines themselves.

Under a standard plan this first year, Medicare handles 75 percent of drug costs after a deductible until the bill reaches $2,250. It does not kick in again until those costs total $5,100. After that, prescriptions are almost completely paid for. The very poor can get special subsidies.

Officials consider the formulation sufficient for the vast majority of recipients and a tremendous boon to those with the largest bills.

"That's a peace of mind . . . they never had before," said Mark McClellan, administrator of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.


Advocacy groups and some independent health analysts have warned of serious health consequences for older and disabled Americans living on low or moderate fixed incomes. Their resources, though minimal, often are too much to qualify for extra help. They face difficult choices, advocates fear: buy medicines or food and other necessities?

"It's a tough thing," said Houghton, who works with seniors as Fairfax County's coordinator of the Virginia Insurance Counseling and Assistance Program. The distressed retiree who appealed to him is 66 years old and takes five generic drugs and three "very expensive" brand-name pills.

Remember when America took care of its elderly? Remember when American cared?

The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, (I)to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'
Matthew 25:40

Twin Cities, Part II

Last week we told you love story of the 81-year-old father of a Minnesota Congressman.

Today we have another wonderful story from the Twin Cities. This one involves Zombies.

Six friends spruced up in fake blood and tattered clothing were arrested in downtown Minneapolis on suspicion of toting "simulated weapons of mass destruction."

Police said the group were allegedly carrying bags with wires sticking out, making it look like a bomb, while meandering and dancing to music as part of a "zombie dance party" Saturday night.

"They were arrested for behavior that was suspicious and disturbing," said Lt. Gregory Reinhardt, a police spokesman. Police also said the group was uncooperative and intimidated people with their "ghoulish" makeup.

One group member said the "weapons" were actually backpacks modified to carry a homemade stereos and were jailed without reason. None of the six adults and one juvenile arrested have been charged.

"Given the circumstance of them being uncooperative ... why would you have those (bags) if not to intimidate people?" said Inspector Janee Harteau. "It's not a case of (police) overreacting."

Harteau also said police were on high alert because they'd gotten a bulletin about men who wear clown makeup while attacking and robbing people in other states.

Zombies? Toting "simulated weapons of mass destruction?" Clowns robbing people? Why can't these things happen in Springfield?

Be sure to follow the link for mug shots of the Zombies.

A Tale of Two Teachers

One worked as the host of "The Good Night Show" on the PBS Kids Sprout network. The network fired Melanie Martinez when it learned of her earlier work. In 1999, Martinez had starred in two 30-second videos (see them here and here) spoofing teen abstinence public service announcements. The videos were directed by David Mack and produced by John Ordover, and were hosted on the website

"PBS Kids Sprout has determined that the dialogue in this video is inappropriate for her role as a preschool program host and may undermine her character's credibility with our audience," said Sandy Wax, network president.

The network learned of the videos because Ms. Martinez alerted officials to the internet posting of them.

The second teacher taught high school science in Paducah, Kentucky. The school board fired Tericka Dye for appearing in a pornographic film over a decade ago.
McCracken County school superintendent Tim Heller says Dye was fired because her presence in the classroom would have been a distraction to students.

Similar stories, correct? So, was it correct to fire either teacher? Both?

One huge difference in the two cases: some Kentucky Christians want Ms. Dye to be reinstated. She says she has become a Christian and deserves a second chance.
Now Dye's attorney, Mark Blankenship, has filed a lawsuit seeking her reinstatement.

"It seems to me you're punishing a teacher because of [potential] student misbehavior," he says. "You know, it's like [saying] 'the students won't be able to handle this, so we're going to have to let the teacher go.'"

That rationale, says the attorney, is causing the school district to miss out on an opportunity to allow Dye to share "truly an American success story" in her classroom.

"She grew up in a very poor family [and had] an alcoholic father; she was abused sexually by an uncle when she was from six to thirteen. I mean, she got off to such a horrible start in life and then made something of herself," Blankenship notes. "And now, a public school system, which is really part of our government, sort of throws her away."

There are indications Ms. Dye appeared in at least 12 films using the screen name Rikki Anderson. One was titled "Ass Whores 12." (NOT WORK SAFE) Another was titled "Tight Ass."

No one has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Ms. Martinez. She has not invoked her Christianity in her own defense.

Some people might argue that the situations are different because of the age groups with which each teacher dealt.

Ms. Martinez made a mock PSA in which she used the words "anal sex." Ms. Dye made a pornographic movie in which there may have been actual anal sex.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

A Story

The 12-year-old son of the owners of a bed and breakfast/restaurant gave his father a rainbow flag, which the son had purchased following a trip to Dorothy's house, a museum about the Wizard of Oz. The flag reminded the boy of "somewhere over the rainbow." The father proudly flew the rainbow flag beneath the American flag outside his bed and breakfast.

Some townspeople became angry with the bed and breakfast/restaurant owners. They believed the rainbow flag represented homosexuality. The local newspaper ran an article about the flag without talking to the owners about why they put up the flag. In fact, most townspeople didn’t even know what the flag meant until the article ran. Once word got around, the reaction was harsh.

The local radio station has threatened to remove the flag-flyer’s commercials if he does not remove the flag. A local minister told the owners it was equivalent to hanging women’s panties on a flag pole. When the owner jokingly said he might consider that – the preacher said he would have him arrested.

The bed and breakfast/restaurant business has suffered - down to only a few local customers. The townspeople who've boycotted say it's too offensive for them to eat there.

One local resident, Keith Klassen says the flag is a slap in the face to the conservative community. “To me it's just like running up a Nazi flag in a Jewish neighborhood. I can't walk into that establishment with that flag flying because to me that's saying that I support what the flag stands for and I don't," says Klassen.

The owner says the rainbow flag is not meant to be a gay pride symbol but he doesn't mind if that's how it's taken. He says he is determined to stand his ground. “When this rainbow flag shreds, I will buy another one, and another one, and another one - just like my American flag, I'll buy another one."

Where do you think this true story is set? The answer is below the fold.

If you guessed Meade, Kansas, located in southwest Kansas, you'd be correct. If you guessed somewhere in the Ozarks, you could also be correct.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Friday Beagle Blogging

It's been far too long since we posted a photo of our favorite beagle. Baxter spent Thursday at Happy Tails Doggie Day Care. Today, he's just gonna veg.

The "Free" Press?

Atrios points us to New York Times OP-Ed columnist Paul Krugman's latest. Unfortunately, the column is only available to those who pay the subscription fpr TimesSelect. We clioked the link to "Start your 14-day free trial to TimesSelect now" and found one needs to enter a credit card number for this "free" trial. The card won't be charged for 14 days, but one must cancel the subscription by then or the Times will automatically charge one's card.

But that little rant isn't really what this post is about.

First, thanks to Atrios, here's the bit from Krugman:

Whatever the reason, the fact is that the Bush administration continues to be remarkably successful at rewriting history. For example, Mr. Bush has repeatedly suggested that the United States had to invade Iraq because Saddam wouldn’t let U.N. inspectors in. His most recent statement to that effect was only a few weeks ago. And he gets away with it. If there have been reports by major news organizations pointing out that that’s not at all what happened, I’ve missed them.

It’s all very Orwellian, of course. But when Orwell wrote of “a nightmare world in which the Leader, or some ruling clique, controls not only the future but the past,” he was thinking of totalitarian states. Who would have imagined that history would prove so easy to rewrite in a democratic nation with a free press?

We've noticed for some time the news media's failure to correct misinformation. Which leads us to believe there is no such thing as a "free" press in an America that has become a Corporate State.

The media are bought and paid for. In the Corporate State, corporate media are the State Media.

As long as otherwise intelligent folks refuse to admit the evidence of their senses, this will not change. Perhaps it can never change. But the first step is to stop pretending the mythology is true, stop denying the reality.

The press is not now, nor has it been for some time, nor is it likely again to be, free.

By the Numbers

On Wednesday, the Bush administration celebrated the one-year anniversary of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. That act provided $14.5 billion in tax breaks to energy firms, nearly 60 percent of which went to “oil, natural gas, coal, electric utilities and nuclear power."

Also on Wednesday, the Senate rejected an effort to halt debate on opening a portion of Florida's coast to oil and gas drilling. The Senate is expected to give its final approval to sell oil and gas leases in the eastern Gulf of Mexico early next week.

Despite the bipartisan 86-12 vote to move the bill forward, the issue sparked a furious debate between Democrats and Republicans over the future of America's energy policy. Republicans brought up the Energy Policy Act of 2005 -- saying it has been good for our country. Republican members of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee even issued a news release touting the benefits of the "Energy Policy Act of 2005 -- By the Numbers."

Below the fold is an alternative look at the Energy Policy Act of 2005 -- By the Numbers.

$1,318 -- amount of profit PER SECOND ExxonMobil made in the second quarter of 2006

$10.4 billion -- amount of total profit ExxonMobil made in the second quarter of 2006, the second biggest profit ever reported by a U.S. company

$10.7 billion -- amount of profit Exxon made in the fourth quarter of 2005, the biggest profit ever reported by a U.S. company

$398 million -- value of the retirement package ExxonMobil gave its outgoing CEO Lee Raymond at the end of 2005

36 -- percent increase in second-quarter net profit from 2005 for ExxonMobil

40 -- percent increase in second-quarter net profit from 2005 for Royal Dutch Shell PLC (to $7.32 billion)

30 -- percent increase in second-quarter net profit from 2005 for BP PLC (to $7.3 billion)

65 -- percent increase in second-quarter net profit from 2005 for ConocoPhillips (to $5.18 billion)

$3.006 -- national average price per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline reported by AAA Fuel Gauge on July 27, 2006

$3.057 -- highest recorded average price per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline reported by AAA Fuel Gauge on Sept. 5, 2005
(the Energy Policy Act of 2005 was passed on July 26, 2005)

$2.14 -- national average price per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline on July 24, 2005

40 -- one year percentage increase in the national average price per gallon of regular unleaded gasoline

6 billion -- number of shares of ExxonMobil stock outstanding

50 -- approximate percent of those shares institutionally owned (401K's and others)

9 -- approximate number of institutionally-owned ExxonMobil stock shares per US citizen

$9 -- increase in value per share of ExxonMobil stock over the past 12 months

$81 -- amount each US citizen would have received for 9 shares of ExxonMobil stock

500 -- number of gallons of gasoline average American uses each year

$430 -- increase in cost of those gallons from one year ago

In his floor speech on Wednesday, Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Pete Domenici (R-NM) said, "We are reminded by all the American people who will ask when the sun sets on the Capitol tonight – what did the United States Senate do [to] relieve the burden on working Americans?"

Examining the second-quarter oil company profits and the price of gasoline provides an answer -- not much.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

A Little Nookie in the Car

Beating the Chatter guy to this story, we hope. Only reason we know to run it. Oh, and Stoner might enjoy it, or wish he could.

St. Paul police cite Sen. Norm Coleman's father for lewd and disorderly conduct

Norm Coleman Sr., the father of Minnesota's junior senator, was cited for lewd and disorderly conduct Tuesday after police officers reported finding him engaged in a sex act in a car near a pizzeria on E. 7th St. in St. Paul.

A police report said officers were called to Savoy Inn at 7:40 p.m. to investigate a report that two people were having sex in a car. The police report stated a woman, Patrizia Marie Schrag, 38, also was cited for lewd and disorderly conduct.

The elder Coleman, 81, raised his son in New York City. He has since moved to Minnesota, and public records indicate he lives in St. Paul.

Sen. Coleman issued the a statement after learning of the citation against his father.

"I love my father dearly," the senator said. "I do not condone his actions or behavior, and I am deeply disturbed by what I have learned. He clearly has some issues that need to be dealt with, and I will encourage him to seek the necessary help."

Ah, a boy's love for his father. A father's love for. . . .

Monday, July 24, 2006

Avoid Indiana

Add highway sniper attacks to the many good reasons to avoid the vowel state between Illinois and Ohio.

SEYMOUR, Indiana (AP) -- Sniper attacks targeted two pickup trucks early Sunday on a busy highway, killing one person and wounding a second, and police asked other motorists who had been through the area to check their vehicles for bullet holes.

Hours later, two more vehicles were struck by bullets on another four-lane highway about 100 miles away, but there was no immediate indication if the two cases were connected, police said.

One shot struck a southbound pickup on Interstate 65 shortly after midnight, killing one of its two passengers, police said. At about the same time, a bullet grazed the head of a passenger in another southbound pickup on the same highway.

That passenger and the driver of the pickup are from Iowa. No, we don't know them.

David Horsey Has A Dream

We share it.

Don't Eat at Doe's, and Don't Pick on Granny

Our dear friend Granny Geek has been attacked by a ptomaine-infested, sniveling little twerp who is the general manager of a food-poisoning-likely-to-happen restaurant, Doe's Eat Place. Granny posted a review of the restaurant and the twerp-in-charge chose to attack Granny for an unrelated post. The dimwit evidently thought Granny wouldn't recognize his email address. She did, and she outed him. We posted a comment, copied below.

We discourage anyone from eating at Doe's as we fear they may come down with a bad case of food poisoning. The kitchen staff at Doe's does NOT handle food properly. And the general manager evidently believes it is perfectly acceptable to place to-go orders in used metal cans. Granny has the proof. We feel ill just thinking about what might have been in that can before the staff (with the apparent approval of the general manager) added the tamales, the reported house specialty. We hope the metal can had contained food. Might have been oil, paint thinner, rat poison, shoe polish, who knows?

Now before anyone jumps down our throat, we don't have a problem with Dennis, Doe's general manager, voicing his opinion on Granny's blog. We don't have a problem with views that differ from Granny's or our own. We DO have a problem with Whiny Ass Titty Babies who attack the messenger rather than clean up their mess.

And yes, we are having a hissy fit about this. Deal.

(cross-posted at Granny Geek)

Well, if I had ever planned to eat at Doe’s, I’ve forever cancelled such plans. At least until new management comes along. Let’s recap:

On July 6th, Granny posts a review (i.e., opinion piece) of a restaurant. In this review she reveals several serious health code violations which could potentially lead to food poisoning of patrons. Ultimately, that could lead to the closing of the restaurant and (quite hopefully) a lawsuit against the owners and management. (I wouldn’t sue the rank and file workers. . .they likely don’t make enough to make it worthwhile)

Granny also says nice things about the restaurant, namely that the service is excellent, it’s a meat-lovers paradise, the fries are excellent, and the ambiance is fun and casual. Still, there’s that worry over food poisoning, and the stupidity of putting a “to-go” order in a used can. Got to be breaking some law with that one.

Some two weeks after this, the general manager of said restaurant (one Dennis Fowler) emails Granny requesting she call him to discuss her concerns with said restaurant. Even provides a phone number, I assume. Granny attempts to reach Dennis who won’t take her call. He NOW claims he was “in dispose,” whatever the hell that means. This Dennis doesn’t sound like the brightest of bulbs. Dennis also now claims he attempted to return Granny’s call, but blames Granny for his failure to reach her because she called on “what was a ‘restricted’ number.”

Yeah. Right.

Dear readers, if you were in Dennis’ position, what would you do? Personally, I’d email Granny to explain the reason I was unable to take her call, and the reason I was unable to return that call. Granny obviously received the first email from Dennis. She tried to call him as he requested.

We’ve already established Dennis isn’t the brightest fellow. He doesn’t go the logical, intelligent route. No, Dennis decides to post a comment on Granny’s blog attacking Granny. Go back and read his initial comment. He claims Granny’s blog is “biased and full of half truths. Its (sic) YELLOW JOURNALISM.” In his tiny, immature brain, Dennis probably thinks people will read his comment and decide Granny must have been telling “half truths” about the restaurant for which he is responsible.


(Yes, we know using all caps is shouting. We hope the message gets through to Dennis this way. He just might understand shouting.)

Dennis compounds his problem by stating “Im (sic) willing to talk anytime. You know how to contact me. Sunday is a great day to get a hold of me.” Dennis lies. He obviously is NOT willing to talk “anytime” as he did not take Granny’s phone call. Dennis is dim. He says Granny knows how to contact him, but he won’t take the initiative to use his knowledge of how to contact Granny, and do so. The boy needs help!

And to dig the hole just a bit deeper, Dennis claims “Im (sic) here and Im (sic) easy to get along with and eager to please. It’s what I do.”

No, Dennis, you’re not eager to please. If you were you would not have attacked Granny, you would not have ignored her phone call, you would have made more than one effort (one wonders if you even did that) to return her call.

No, Dennis, what you are is dim, self-absorbed and a poor manager. Your post on Granny’s blog has done more damage to your business than her review. For now we all know what a sniveling little twerp you are. I, for one, am anxiously awaiting the health inspector’s reports on Doe’s, and/or the first report of food poisoning.

Most importantly, I’m awaiting your sincere public apology to Granny. We’ve seen your ass, Dennis Fowler. Now let’s see your backbone.


Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Springfieldian on

Jack Sauer, 3, of Springfield, Missouri, reacts to a frog leaping into the crowd during the Tom Sawyer Day's frog jumping contest in Hannibal, Missouri, on July 1.

Truth or Rumor?

According to BitchPhD:

They want us to believe that the good lord has struck Ken Lay down, but I heard he bought a body on the black market and is hiding out in Dick Cheney's garage.

Best explanation I've heard so far. Perhaps it was Kenny Boy who bought that obituary in the News and Leader. And by the way, anybody seen Dick Cheney since Kenny Boy reportedly kicked the bucket? You don't suppose......

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Stem Cell Documentary

The Missouri Coalition for Lifesaving Cures has produced a documentary which it says

. . .provides basic facts about stem cells and the Initiative and features interviews with leading Missouri medical experts and patient advocates.

It explains why stem cells offer the hope for cures for diseases and injuries like diabetes, Parkinson’s, ALS, cancer, sickle cell disease, heart disease and spinal cord injury. It also explains why the Stem Cell Initiative is needed to ensure that Missourians will continue to have equal access to any stem cell research and cures allowed under federal law.

Some political analysts believe stem cells will be THE issue in the race for U.S. Senate between incumbant Jim Talent and challenger Claire McCaskill. We're not so sure, but stem cells will likely play a role.

In any case, the documentary is scheduled to air multiple times this month. The Coalition's web site only lists air times for the week of July 10th, but we know for certain the schedule lasts through the end of July. You may also watch the half-hour documentary on-line at the web site.

The New Blog

Area bloggers are banding together against a new blog, 417 Pundit, due to its content. It's interesting, as Duane Keys pointed out, the new blog has really got the group fired up. Perhaps that was 417 Pundit's intent?

I'm Related to One of These Guys

The Christian rock band Audio Adrenaline will be performing on the grandstand at the Ozark Empire Fair August 3rd. I'm a cousin to one of the band members, although we look nothing alike and he has musical talent. Otherwise, you'd swear we were twins.

AudioA has announced their retirement as a band. This may be the one of the final opportunities to see them in concert in the Ozarks. Their web site tour information includes two fall dates in Kansas City. Their farewell album, Adios: The Greatest Hits, is set to be released August 1st.

I've never seen AudioA perform. In fact, I've never met my cousin. He's from my father's side of the family, and we had little interaction with them. No, I don't know why. It's unlikely that I ever will.

Hey, I've Got Something In Common With LeAnn Rimes!

A few years ago I spent several days in St. John's Hospital battling a leg infection. Being diabetic, I'm supposed to be extra careful when I get scratched or cut on my extremities, especially my legs. Unfortunately, I had a toenail removed and wasn't quite as careful as I thought, resulting in a serious infection. A trip to the emergency room following a fever of 105.7 and pain in my leg led to the hospitalization.

According to this story, Ms. Rimes has cancelled three concerts this week to undergo surgery for a leg infection. Her publicist says Ms. Rimes is expected to play the remaining dates of her "This Woman" tour. Branson's Grand Palace indicates Ms. Rimes is scheduled to play there sometime in the future, but hasn't announced dates yet. No dates for Branson are included in the tour information on Country Music Television's web site.

Why, you ask, is DocLarry writing about this? Because LeAnn Rimes is appearing at the Midwest Old Threshers Reunion in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa. I grew up near Mt. Pleasant and sometimes attended the Old Threshers Reunion on Labor Day weekend to watch the steam engine-driven threshing machines work. Lots of noise, lots of steam, lots of people, all in the late summer heat.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

This is Sick

We've never been much into hunting. We know plenty of hunters who enjoy the sport and utilize all they kill. They are responsible hunters. We understand the need for hunting to help control animal population. But we read about a practice that is just plain sick: Internet Hunting, or Remote Control Hunting.

This AP article caught our eye:
States Ban Hunting of Live Animals over the Internet

Louisiana has joined 21 other states in banning Internet hunting, the practice of using a mouse click to kill animals on a distant game farm.

The cyber-shooting idea was the brainchild of Texan John Lockwood, who started the web site

The idea was this: Hunters sign up on the web site and pay some $1,500 or more. They schedule a session, then log on at their appointed time to watch a feeding station on the computer screen. The animal that was ordered—from wild hogs to antelope—is in the area, and when it approaches the food, the hunter moves on-screen crosshairs into place. A click of the mouse fires a rifle to kill the animal.

The armchair hunter's trophy animal would then be mounted and shipped for display.

Texas outlawed the practice last year.

Humane Society executive vice president Michael Markarian was pleased with the decision in Louisiana.

"Responsible hunters know there's no sport in shooting an animal remotely while lying in bed and wearing camouflage pajamas," Markarian said in a statement today.

Meanwhile, the game farm's web site now says hunters must come to the farm, where they "can now offer a unique hunting opportunity for disabled and handicapped hunters, as well as others, who may need the assistance of our system while hunting."

Where is the sport in this? You pay for a particular animal to be brought to a feeding location so that it is within range, you use your mouse to aim a carefully controlled weapon, and then you kill the defenseless animal, likely bred and raised solely for this purpose. Real hunting includes the risk of not finding your prey, of missing due to the kick of the gun or your own breathing, and alerting your prey before you can shoot. This is nothing more than a video game.

Vice President Dick Cheney probably finds it quite enjoyable, when he's not shooting someone in the face.

We were curious where Missouri stands on this sick practice. The Humane Society of the United States web site includes a section on Internet hunting.
This pay-per-view slaughter bears no resemblance to traditional hunting. Even pro-hunting groups denounce Internet hunting because it violates the ideals of a "fair chase."

According to the Humane Society site, Missouri is not among the 22 states which ban Internet hunting (see below). (The Humane Society site lists Louisiana as pending; the AP article notes Louisiana has passed legislation banning the practice.)

It's time for Missouri to ban Internet and remote-controlled hunting.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Bush Began Spying on You BEFORE Sept. 11

The Bush administration's entire argument that spying on U.S. citizens was necessary to fight the war on terror is a complete lie, just like their reasons for invading Iraq. reports:

The U.S. National Security Agency asked AT&T Inc. to help it set up a domestic call monitoring site seven months before the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, lawyers claimed June 23 in court papers filed in New York federal court....

``The Bush Administration asserted this became necessary after 9/11,'' plaintiff's lawyer Carl Mayer said in a telephone interview. ``This undermines that assertion.''

There was no war on terror before September 11, so why did Bush reportedly decide to start the process enabling him to illegally spy on Americans?

America deserves better than George W. Bush.