Saturday, December 31, 2005

Happy New Year?

Here's hoping 2006 is a bit better than 2005 for most of us. But this isn't a rant entry. Rather, it is a celebration of New Year's Eve. Who'd have thought I'd be strolling in shorts and a t-shirt on December 31st? Are we still in the northern hemisphere? Temperatures in the 60s the first week of January?

The wife, the dog, and the Doc took a brisk walk through Springfield's National Cemetary, then drove up to Pomme de Terre State Park. We'd never visited the park and decided it was too beautiful a day to stay home. Excellent weather, wonderful views of Lake Pomme de Terre, neat drive across the dam. The dog tried to eat somebody's leftover pizza and accidentally bit the wife as she attempted to remove the nasty stuff from his mouth. The Doc was not happy.

Wife is fine. Dog is in the doghouse.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Goodwill Toward Men - Iowa Version

As a follow-up to the story below, here's another demonstrating the Christmas spirit.

Council Bluffs police said a man was injured when he was robbed by someone he had bought beer for on Christmas Day.

Jerry Smith said after he bought beer for three unknown people, he was approached by them again. One of the people demanded money from him. He was hit in the head and blacked out for a few seconds. When he awoke, Smith said $2 he had in his pocket was gone.

Police said he was treated at a local hospital for a 2½ inch cut on his forehead.

Don't honk in Milwaukee. Don't buy beer for someone in Council Bluffs. Got it?

Don't Honk Your Horn in Milwaukee

That may be one lesson to learn from this story. Seems a 50-year-old man who did may not survive a beating.

Some details:

Police said a mob of about 15 assailants believed to be between 16 and 23 years old dragged Samuel McClain out of his car after he honked to get them out of the way. But instead of moving, they surrounded the car and attacked him.

The victim is in critical condition and doctors aren't sure he'll live.

"He might not be able to see or walk because of these people, these kids," McClain's daughter, Shanika Johnson, said. She also urged neighbors to help police.

"Even if they're their own kids, they should turn them in," Johnson said. "I don't want to go on a vigilante thing to try to do something myself. I just want to find out who did it and bring them to justice."

Last year, a man with schizophrenia died after being beaten and robbed by a group of assailants. Six teens were charged and one has been convicted.

We've driven in Milwaukee. Now we're glad we never honked our horn.

Is Bush Drinking Again?

Check out this video, which aired on CBS's "Late, Late Show" and decide for yourself. The video is on a porn-friendly site (no pictures, just text), so be cautious when linking to it.

Spying Not Intrusive, Red Light Camera Is?

Tuesday's Springfield News-Leader contained a story of state Sen. Jason Crowell's (R-Cape Girardeau) proposal to ban cameras at intersections aimed at catching red-light violators.

An excerpt:

Crowell cites several arguments against the cameras. Among them: Too much intrusion by government . . . .

So the good senator thinks it is too intrusive for the government to take a photo of a vehicle's license plate after it has run a red light. But he doesn't think it intrusive for the government to control a woman's uterus. One wonders what Crowell thinks of his Republican president illegally spying on U.S. citizens for the past three years.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Strange Message

The Catholic Church is a sending a strange and puzzeling message. It seems that if a priest molests little children, he will simply be moved to another parish. But if he disagrees with a Bishop making a grab for money, he will be excommunicated.

Beagle Blogging - Christmas Edition

Yes, I've been bad about posting lately. Busy time of year, lots to think about. I'll try to be better this week.

Visited the in-laws for Christmas as we have for 10 years. Lots of card-playing, plenty of great food, much story-telling. Christmas morning always begins with a fine breakfast of eggs, sausage, bacon, hash browns, fruit, sweet rolls, orange juice and coffee. Then it's time to watch the unwrapping of presents. Baxter looks for any that might be for him. Unfortunately, his weren't wrapped. No matter. He loved the treats.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Long, Long Break

Wow. My last post was on December 4th. Sorry about that. Been working hard with that Chatter guy on what will be a very interesting and entertaining project. Details are developing, including a firm premiere date. February 1, 2006. As they say on TV, stay tuned.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Things to Make You Go....Hmmmmmmmm

I found this very interesting. I've copied the entire post from Old Fashioned Patriot's blog below the fold, except for the links to the original articles.

Go to Old Fashioned Patriot to check those links.

Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead!
This list isn't all inclusive but I am noticing a pattern here:

Nov 19th - 9 US Soldiers Killed
Nov 20th - al-Zarqawi Dead? Al Qaeda Terrorist Perhaps Killed in Firefight

Nov 16th - 8 US Soldiers Killed

Nov 2nd - 7 US Soldiers Killed
Nov 3rd - Top Al Qaeda Leader Believed Captured

Sep 28th - 7 US Soldiers Killed
Sep 28th - Al-Qaida chief killed, says Pakistan

There are a number of ways to look at this, I suppose. Could just be several amazing co-ink-i-dinks. It could be the Bush administration manipulating the news in an attempt to turn focus away from a bad story to a "positive" one. Of course, you then have to think about the boy who cried wolf (how many number 3 Al Qaeda leaders are there?). But it most certainly is evidence of the mainstream media publishing whatever Bush/Cheney/Rove tell them to without question or debate. Perhaps that's the saddest part.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Bush is Number One

Historians rate Dubya as the worst president ever. James Buchanan, the 15th president, set the standard. Dubya is lowering the bar.

From Yahoo News:

The History News Network at George Mason University has just polled historians informally on the Bush record. Four hundred and fifteen, about a third of those contacted, answered -- maybe they were all crazed liberals -- making the project as unofficial as it was interesting. These were the results: 338 said they believed Bush was failing, while 77 said he was succeeding. Fifty said they thought he was the worst president ever. Worse than Buchanan.

This is what those historians said -- and it should be noted that some of the criticism about deficit spending and misuse of the military came from self-identified conservatives -- about the Bush record:

  • He has taken the country into an unwinnable war and alienated friend and foe alike in the process;
  • He is bankrupting the country with a combination of aggressive military spending and reduced taxation of the rich;
  • He has deliberately and dangerously attacked separation of church and state;
  • He has repeatedly "misled," to use a kind word, the American people on affairs domestic and foreign;
  • He has proved to be incompetent in affairs domestic (New Orleans) and foreign ( Iraq and the battle against al-Qaida);
  • He has sacrificed American employment (including the toleration of pension and benefit elimination) to increase overall productivity;
  • He is ignorantly hostile to science and technological progress;
  • He has tolerated or ignored one of the republic's oldest problems, corporate cheating in supplying the military in wartime
George W. Bush. Worst. President. Ever.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Privacy? Not in Public School Bathrooms

The principal at a high school in Georgia put a video camera in the boys restroom. An 8th-grade student discovered it, and removed it. Now, the student is suspended for "taking school property."

From WMAZ-TV in Macon:

A Jasper County mother says her 8th grade son found a video camera taping in the school bathroom this week. But now, he is the one in trouble.

Cindy Champion says her son, Mac Bedor, and a few of his friends took the camera out of the ceiling because they felt it violated their privacy. Champion says her son brought the camera home to show her that afternoon. She says when she contacted the Jasper County Comprehensive School, she found out high school principal, Howard Fore, put the camera there. She says Fore told her he put the camera in the boys' bathroom to catch students vandalizing. Champion says her son is now suspended for taking school property.

CINDY CHAMPION, MOTHER: "I had told the high school principal, Mr. Fore, that he needed to come up with another solution. That this wasn't appropriate. His response to me was he was going to continue to film."

Jasper County Superintendent, Jay Brinson, sent a faxed response to Eyewitness News. Brinson says high school principal, Howard Fore, placed the camera in the bathroom last Sunday to control vandalism. He says Fore put the camera there "to discover the identity of those doing the damage." Brinson says the principal did tell Cindy Champion that the camera would be installed again. But in his statement Brinson says, "The camera was not placed back in the restroom, and will not be placed back in the restroom."

Eyewitness News tried to contact the Ocmulgee Circuit District Attorney about the legality of placing hidden cameras in public school rest rooms. He covers that area. Eyewitness News was not able to get in touch with him. But, Eyewitness News did talk with Bibb County District Attorney, Howard Simms. He says cameras in public school bathrooms are legal because schools have more leeway on privacy issues.

Now suppose Mac Bedore had not discovered and removed the camcorder. Suppose Principal Fore watched the video at home and was seen through a window by a neighbor. Do you think DA Simms would prosecute Principal Fore for possession of child pornography?

OK, perhaps that ignores the whole privacy issue. But seriously, how does this covert taping differ from any other that might might show less-than-legal-age boys privates? And the District Attorney thinks it's legal? Wonder if he thinks it's legal to secretly tape teachers in the bathroom?

Thursday, December 01, 2005

What Kind of Candy Am I?


Nutty and gooey - you always satisfy.

Friday Beagle Blogging (Early Edition)

Granny Geek sent us a note regarding Baxter, who hasn't made an appearance on Lost Chord for awhile. Everything's fine. DocLarry's just been bad about keeping up with Beagle Blogging.

But since you asked, Baxter had surgery Wednesday to remove a couple growths. One on his left front leg, one on his back. He's got a cool shaved patch now! He's doing well, and nothing to be concerned about. Baxter turned 12 last month, so the growths are nothing unusual.

We did learn recently that he has a thyroid problem. He takes a pill twice a day ("Special Breakfast" and "Special Supper" = wet dog food surrounding the pill) for that condition, and it's definitely working.

We'd notice he had become lathargic and seemed to have more difficult hopping on to furniture and in and out of the car. In the month he's been taking the medication he's back to acting like a puppy, runs all over the place, especially enjoys playing in dry leaves, and had lost 2.5 pounds (about 5 percent of his body weight). This is one happy and healthy dog!

As I type this, Baxter is sound asleep on the couch, lying on his back, having a dream. I can tell by the jerking back legs indicating his running in his dream. And the occasional muffled bark.

BTW, Baxter LOVES his veterinarian, Dr. Tedd at the Springfield Veterinary Hospital. No, this is not a paid endorsement. But it is an endorsement.