Saturday, September 30, 2006


All's quiet on the homefront this morning. Sipping Boca Java and moving around. The chocolate chip muffins are cooling, fresh out of the oven.

Have you seen the commercials for tourism in Kazakhstan? How funny. I guess my husband is ahead of the curve with his travels there!

The record has been broken - at the age of 100, a Vietnamese man became the oldest person sworn in as a citizen in this area. The record had recently been established by a woman, 99 years old from Mexico! As further celebration that day, Nghia Van Doan's granddaughter gave birth to a baby boy. The grand total for him now: 9 children, 114 grandchildren, 139 great-grandchildren, and 8 great -great grandchildren. All of his family here are citizens and 4 of his children are in Vietnam. Only three have died.

That day, 2,508 area residents became citizens. They represented 126 countries.

Doan came to the U.S. in 1990. He was born in North Vietnam and moved to South Vietnam in 1954. What does he want to do now? No, not go to Disney World. He wants to exercise his right to vote! He hasn't decided for whom to vote, according to one of his granddaughters speaking to reporters, but she said it will be someone of "good moral character." Nice.

Just when I thought it was safe to go to an Oliver Stone movie, I am brought back to reality. During the premieres of his new movie, "World Trade Center", he behaved well. Then he went off to the San Sebastian International Film Festival and bashed his country and President Bush. He is "ashamed of my country" and all that Dixie Chick nonsense. He doesn't need my money.

"People of courage and character always seem sinister to the rest." - Hermann Hesse

Friday, September 29, 2006

The Weather is Fabulous

Cool air this morning. Low humidity. It's all good. The high is guessed at 83. Now we're talking. Soon the mornings will be cool enough regularly that my baking frenzy will begin. I look forward to it every fall.

Filled up the car this morning after taking son to school and the price per gallon is $2.01 at my regular place. If presidents can control the price of gas, as some state, does President Bush get credit for lowering prices as he does blame when the price is higher? Just asking. The whole answer is that it is not correct either way. The president doesn't set gas prices, no matter who is sitting in the oval office.

Howard Dean was in Austin Tuesday at a rally for Democrats. "We are going to take back Texas. And we're going to do it before we take back other states we've lost the last 15-20 years," he said. Ah, Howard. Always good for a chuckle. And Texas was still very much Democratic party dominated 15 years ago, and even more recently than that. Facts, they are such pesky things.

Looks like Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld is the subject du weekend. Fox News and CNN are both advertising specials about him this weekend. I read a really good biography of Rumfeld by an author who knew him from many years ago and I thought she did a good job. She didn't seem to push an agenda, anyway. I don't think the same will be said by folks about the new Woodward book. He was criticized by the left for not making more of an attack on President Bush in his last book, just before the 2004 election, so I'm sure he is determined to correct that in this one, just released in time for the 2006 elections. The man has the cycle down, doesn't he.

Some retired Marine and Army officers testified earlier this week on their opinions about the war in Iraq and the leadership of Donald Rumsfeld. It was before a Democrats only Senate panel and these former military men were given the floor to call for Rumsfeld's resignation. This was the day before President Bush declassified the NIE report, thus dashing the Democrats hopes of making selected sentences the argument du jour for withdrawal from Iraq. The stunt lost steam shortly thereafter.

"The party of FDR and the party of Harry Truman has become the party of cut and run." - President George W. Bush

Thursday, September 28, 2006


The coffee choice of the morning was Boca Java's Ocean Drive. Pretty good stuff. It's Thursday and that means a later start of the day. Son's school begins at 9:30 on Thursdays so my morning is pushed back from there. I've started the beef stew for dinner and the daily load or two of laundry so the day is back on track. I went to Office Depot after taking son to school but didn't enjoy the usual browsing due to the store's remodeling project. It was too distracting for me to browse in peace. I got the computer paper and large envelopes that were on the list today and then left.

Last night I watched the interview with Terri Irwin, widow of Steve the Crocodile Hunter. What a woman. Theirs is a wonderful story and she is determined to carry on his work with the animals and the zoo in Australia. Their little girl will continue on with her children's show and she is expected to carry on the legacy as she comes into adulthood. I had tears running down my face several times over the hour long show.

Speaking of different kind of warrior, a warrior for the human species, Tony Blair has announced his retirement later in the year and did a farewell address to his party earlier in the week. He will be sorely missed as an allie of our country. He got a little choked up a couple of times during his speech and was given a standing ovation at the end. He said, "Yes, it's hard sometimes to be America's strongest ally. But believe me there are no half-hearted allies of America today." Well said, as usual, by Prime Minister Blair. He told his party to resist the urge to go back to the left and said everyone should remain fully aware that the world has changed.

And for an example of a different kind of warrior - one consumed with self importance and nervous of political polls showing his side of the aisle is losing traction? Former President Clinton, taking the advice of Carville and Begala, made a spectacle of himself on the Fox News Sunday show and it has come back to bite him. His tantrum reminded everyone of the fact that if he's wagging a finger in your face, he is lying stronger than usual. "I'm going to say this one more time, I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky..." being the most dramatic example of the finger wag. Carville and Begala are convinced the way to gin up the base of the Democrat party is to make Fox News the propaganda machine. They sure can't count on the message they don't have. Nothing angers the left quicker than both sides exercising freedom of speech.

"We will live with the grief. We will not be victims of the grief. We will be wildlife warrriors." - Terri Irwin.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Hamid Karzai Rocks D.C. Press Corps

I watched the best news conference I've seen in a very long time yesterday morning. President Bush and President Karzai of Afghanistan, brothers in the global battle against IslamoFacism, handed the White House journalists' asses back to them on a platter. The performance was brilliant.

The twits in the White House press corp and the press covering President Karzai's visit for foreign outlets thought it would be worth a chuckle or two to ask both presidents about the war on terrorism, both in Iraq and in Afghanistan. Allow me to recap:

President Bush made the usual remarks, followed by President Karzai's remarks. May I just say, President Karzai distracts me with his spiffy attire - the hat is cool but what really sends me is the garment of purple and green that he drapes over his shirt and jacket. Anyway, after the gratitude and all the thanks to America for helping to establish a free Afghanistan, President Karzai mentioned he went to Walter Reed Hospital to visit soldiers wounded in Afghanistan to both thank them personally and on behalf of the people of his country.

Then the good stuff started:

The first twit from the Washington Post, I believe, but it may have been the New York Times, asked President Bush about the leaked classified document from the NIE that she thought proved the Iraq War was causing the jihadi terror around the world. She never saw it coming. President Bush explained how interesting is was that 42 days out from an election that the newspapers would publish a classified leak solely, obviously, for a political agenda, and how it was a naive statement from the report that she was latching on to. Then he said, in order to stop the political debate and gossip spreading, he would declassify the document and had already instructed John Negropointe, National Intelligence Director, to do so today. You could have heard a pin drop.

The best was yet to be: President Karzai looked directly at her and said terrorism was hurting Afghanistan and the U.S. "way before 9/11" with the burning mosques, killing of women and children, "forcing populations to poverty and misery" in Afghanistan.

The headline answer: "Do you forget people jumping off the 80th floor when planes were hitting them?" "Should we wait for them to come kill us again?" "They were attacking America around the world before they came here on 9/11." President Karzai was so articulate that it put the press to shame, if they could be shamed. He crystalized the argument for being on the offense in this global war.

I watched this press conference play out in amazement. Finally. I took notes so I would not forget the best parts. I felt as though I would leap to my feet and cheer outloud.


President Bush did a good job, but President Karzai rocked my world.

Tuesday Tidbits

Hubby tells of snow in Utah where he has been working. Son's Scout troop went water skiing last weekend and if he was in town, husband would have gone with them. But instead he was in a place with snow. Contrasts.

I enjoyed a pleasant two hours in the salon Saturday. My stylist did her usual fine work and transformed me into a new woman. After that, I took son to a jewelry store to have his ring finger measured for his Senior class ring. We have reached that milestone, him being a Jr this year and all, so after we knew the proper size we came home to fill out the order form. I have been comiserating with other parents since then. It is amazing what this process has morphed into for today's high school student.

When I was in high school, back in ye olden days, we didn't have the priviledge of chosing what kind of ring we wanted to wear. I went to a Catholic girls school, so maybe it was different for us, but we were only to supply our ring size and that was all the ordering process required. We also were not allowed to order as early as they do now. We couldn't wear our rings until Jr year was officially over at the end of the school calendar year. Our rings were downright plain compared to today's. No stones or extras as options. At the top of the ring was the school emblem. On the side was the school name. On the opposite side was the graduating year. That's all folks.

And a word about today's prices - outrageous. After writing a check for the required down payment of $60.00, I supplied the company with my credit card info for the balance. Ah, good times.

On a serious note, the local news is all over the recent event of a cop shooting here in town. It ended in the death of the officer, the first police death in two years. The tragedy is compounded by the fact that the thug is an illegal alien from Mexico and had previously been deported from our country. He sneaked back over the border and was working for a landscaper. He was stopped for a traffic violation - driving 50 in a 30 mph area - and had no id, insurance verification, or registration. He also gave the officer a false name. So, he was handcuffed and put into the back seat of the police cruiser. Unfortunately, after the officer sat in his driver seat, the thug managed to get his hands in front of himself and pulled a gun from his waistband, apparently missed by the officer. He shot the officer 4 times in the head and back. The officer managed to call for help before losing consciousness. He was dead on arrival to the hospital.

The thug appeared in court yesterday. He has three, count them, three lawyers. Two lawyers are court appointed and one lawyer was sent by the Mexican government. Unbelievable.

It is time for every adult to contact their senator and demand the senator vote in favor of the Secure Fence Act. Now. I did this last week. It only takes a moment of time and they need to hear the message loud and clear.

Build the fence now.

This officer was in his early 30's and married to a police officer. His brother is an EMT. These are community oriented people, protecting us every day. Between him and his wife they have 5 children.

Houston is what is known as a Sanctuary City. The officers are not allowed to ask people if they are in our country legally. City policy ties their hands and allows the flood of people coming over the border to continue. I admit when the idea of a fence first surfaced, I was not on board. Over time, though, I see the wisdom. It is time to do it.

No mas.

Monday, September 25, 2006


Sipping Boca Java, Palm Beach Passion blend, and trying to get rid of a sinus headache. The air outside has cooled overnight and that is good but the headache remains.

Happy Rosh Hashana! It is the Jewish New Year of 5767 for those playing at home. It is the 10 days of repentance that lead to Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

Today the Pope meets with the Muslim leaders of the region to discuss his recent remarks concerning Mohammed. I am happy he doesn't apologize for making the remarks. Some honest debate and distinctions among religions of the world would be refreshing. The Muslims response to the Pope's remarks were death threats and hanging the Pope in effegy. When the Iranians launched the current showing of cartoons bashing Christians and mocking the Holocaust, I seem to have missed the violent reaction of those offended by them.

I have a new t-shirt for lounging around the house. It has one sentence written in Arabic across the chest. The English translation is below and reads: I will not submit.

The VW commercials showing the use of air bags in crashes? They freak me out every time. I am trying to realize what is coming and avert my eyes.

Were there no Southern men available to portray Huey Long in "All the Kings Men"? Sean Penn deserves the lousy reviews he is receiving. Why does Hollywood continue to insist on performances over the top when the lead is a Southern character? It's ridiculous. And, has Sean Penn suffered a stroke recently? I've heard him on a couple of interview shows promoting the film and he can't put together a coherant sentence to save his life.

Secretary of State Rice fared much better in her interview with Katie Couric on Sixty Minutes than former President Clinton did on Fox News Sunday. It was Clinton's first interview on Fox News, the network in its tenth year now, and it was quite the performance. Of course it was all planned by his people to make him look like the loyal liberal he is. When questioned about the hunt for bin Laden during his time in office, he came unhinged and started the whole victim of a vast right wing conspiracy, I was the greatest president ever routine. The man is the definition of narcisstic and realizes his legacy will not be treated kindly by history. So, the plan is to blame those evil right wing conservatives. And taking off on Chris Wallace, son of Mike Wallace of Sixty Minutes/CBS fame? Accusing Chris Wallace of doing the bidding of Fox News? Really dumb move. The fact that Clinton, the glory hound he is, has never been interviewed on Fox News speaks volumes. He is of the crowd that thinks Fox News is only speaking to conservatives. That's because Fox News is the only network that bothers to do both sides of the issue on every interview. And, horror of horrors, they have a pro-American attitude!

I think most of all that Clinton is still smarting from the fact that he could not bully ABC into completely ditching the recent "Path to 9/11" movie. He tried to bully Chris Wallace with stabbing the air right in front of Wallace's face with his index finger and hitting the clipboard of papers on Wallace's lap while leaning into his face. Really school yard bully tactics. After the show, he screamed at his staff while leaving the studio.

Clinton has to rally the base for the upcoming election. The Democrats see their leads falling and now fear not taking back control of the House of Representatives. Plus, the Clinton machine has to appear tough on defense with Hillary's upcoming campaign for president on the horizon.

The grifters are looking to live in the big white house again.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Funky Friday

I signed up for a mail order coffee service. I heard about it on a radio show and went to the website after I learned this company donates tons of fresh coffee to the military stationed overseas. So, it's all a part of how I try to make my little contribution to the social concious of life. Many years ago I purchased a book about living your beliefs as far as your financial decisions go and it has stayed with me as time marches on. The older I get, the more strident I become, it seems.

Today, continuing on with my media exposure, I was on local talk radio as a listener commenting on the recent events at the U.N. The host was saying that he only heard Democrats coming out and denouncing the speeches made against America and President Bush. The host was asking why Republicans weren't out there vocally. So, I called in and told him of Sen. Norm Coleman and Sen. George Voinovich, two that I've seen on tv. Then I went on to my bigger point - it was a perfect opportunity for all people of all political thought to come together as Americans and denounce the leaders of Venezuela and Iran. Again, I cannot express strongly enough who tired I am of people putting party above country. We are Americans.

It was somewhat ironic to see and hear the Democrats coming out for the cameras yesterday to denounce the hate talk. These are the same folks who have spoken hateful comments about President Bush on a regular basis without shame - terms like liar, idiot, dummy, he betrayed the people, warmonger, he cooked the intelligence, nazi, far right wing fanatic, and the like. I chose to think they are sincere in their support now.

Did you notice what went on with Sen. Tom Harken of Iowa? Yesterday he made a point of saying he could understand why Chavez said what he said. Then, after he was the only one going that route as a politican, he came out with a statement to clarify that he wasn't supporting Chavez. Um-hmm.

I watched the two hours of tv goodness last night that was Grey's Anatomy. I love that show. The only way I will spend time watching a tv show anymore is if the writing merits the time. This show does.

Then I saw a preview to the upcoming new season beginning for Desperate Housewives. All was ok until I saw a scene, involving sex and the housewife's reluctance to do something her partner was asking for - then she said she doesn't do that, she's a Republican. Funny? Yeah, not so much. Just falling into the cheap shots in the political arena, completely unneccesary. So, now I have to write ABC and tell them what schmucks they are for allowing that show to go down that path. Then I have to let the sponsors advertising know my displeasure. Why? Because the American woman controls the pursestrings, in most homes, and she is the one making the everyday purchases. They will listen.

I take the label activist literally. It's what I do.

Putting on the big girl panties and getting the job done...

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Autumn Nutbags

I breathed a sigh of relief as I noted the safe landing of the astronauts, back onto solid ground and no emergencies. It is well past time for a whole new shuttle program and resuming landing on the moon again.

Well, how about those amusing dictators holding court at the U.N. this week? To hear thugs like the Iranian president and the Venezuelan president preach about peace and justice is surreal at best. Chavez yesterday received lots of applause and laughter from the audience at the U.N., mostly made up of the non-aligned union who now dominate the General Assembly. They had quite the yuk fest there. Press conferences and speeches galore. The U.N. press eating it up.

Beside proving how truly irrelevant the U.N. is today, the spectacle of the past few days leaves me with a question: Where's the outrage? Where's the condemnation from our elected leaders? I know the House of Representatives is no place to find concensus, but how about from the Senate? The Senate is considered the more dignified and thoughtful of the bodies and yet no response, other than from Norm Coleman, R-Mn and George Voinivich, R-Oh. How about the Jewish senators, where is there outrage that a couple of thugs spouting anti-semitic speeches are welcomed with open arms from a large segment of the U.N.? No problem with the president of Iran calling for the elimination of Israel? Senator Schumer, Senator Boxer, Senator Fienstein, Senator Fiengold? Anyone?

Or is it just too much fun to hear these men ridicule the President of the U.S., who they are committed to seeing fail on the world stage for their own political gain? Party over country once again?

Chavez is a guest in Harlem of a cheering crowd showing the love for the gift of cheap heating oil, made as a jab to our country. His own people suffer from complete poverty - over 52% by their own numbers - yet he is so concerned for Americans in Harlem? Don't forget he is closing Citgo gas stations here as a way of tightening up the gas supply. Fawn all over him, you idiot New Yorkers. Even Joe Kennedy, Jr lost his nerve, or came to his senses, and cancelled his appearance with Chavez.

There was a huge demostration outside the U.N. yesterday - see any coverage? Very little. Felicity Hoffman, actress, came out and protested. I guess she isn't a big enough star to merit a lot of attention.

It is important to boycott any companies supporting policies with which you disapprove. I will not shop at our new Macy's stores here (the parent company bought out our Foley's) because they chose Susan Sarandon as the spokeswoman in an opening weekend commerical. She was promoting shopping at Macy's and some of the profits go to something. I guess she suffers liberal guilt if she shops at Macy's. Like she shops at Macy's. You remember her new best friend, Cindy Sheehan, went to embrace Chavez in Venezuela and denounce our country.

Venezuela is a very poor third world country. I lived there and will never go back. Caracus is not Venezuela. Chavez has shut down the free press, seized private ranch lands for government control, and jailed those with dissenting voices. The Iranian government is worse. These men are dangerous to the free world and must be taken seriously.

When someone is telling you who they are, you should believe them.

And, for Jacques Chirac, he is once again proving what a cheese eating surrender monkey he is. He tells our delegation and President Bush he is on the same page in support of sanctions on Iran, not once but many times, then goes to the floor of the U.N. for his address and completely changes course. And he wonders why France is not a world power. Mon Dieu.

I keep going back to the words of our friend, Abu Danny, the collegue/student of hubby's from Iraq. His question to my husband and another engineer recently as he was taking a course from them, along the lines of how is it that our government does not show more care concerning the people we allow into our country. He would be aghast to hear that Columbia University has now extended an invitation to the Iranian president to speak to the students while he is in Manhattan.

Danny Glover appears arm in arm with Chavez on the stage in Harlem this morning. And it is the president of this country who is accused of being in a bubble by the elite journalists and celebs here... If Glover was a critic of Chavez in Venezuela, he would be jailed but that irony escapes him, as it did Sheehan. Great thinkers, those two.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


So far, so good this morning. Enjoying morning coffee without worrying about breaking into a sweat, as the a/c is doing well now. The air was a bit cooler and drier outside as I took son to school, a welcome relief. But, alas, we expect 90 degree temps again this afternoon. Here in this part of the world, our low temps at night still hover around 70 degrees. It'll be like this through the fall months, with the afternoon temps slowly hitting highs in the 80's. I have vivid memories of wearing shorts and sleeveless shirts on Christmas Eve as a child.

How about that space debris, huh? I am a bit nervous about the sudden appearance of three or four objects floating around outside the shuttle and the astronauts are trying to figure out what the stuff is. Holy cow. I'm holding them in my thoughts. I hope the best for their families, who I'm sure are stressing out on this development, whether they say so publicly or not.

Last night brought the happy ending to the bizarre story of the kidnapped infant girl from her home in Missouri. Her family's prayers have been answered. That facial birthmark saved her life when it was discovered to be hidden by makeup by a woman relative of the kidnapper. The ironic thing is this birthmark will be something the girl will want to be cosmetically removed as a teenager, I'm sure.

Have you heard about the first woman tourist, paying her own way, to travel into space on a Russian rocket? She blasted off from Kazakhstan. I'm sure if my hubby was still in that country he would have tried to get to wherever she blasted off and check it out. She is an American citizen now, born in Iran and left that country at the age of 16. She is 40 now and very successful in her life in America. Her father was a senior executive in a wine company and it was closed by the Iranian radical Islamic regime. Her name is Anousheh Ansari.

Ms. Ansari spoke no English upon arrival in this country. She received two degrees within five years, however, and secured a loan to start up a software firm with her husband in her 20's. Then they sold the business for $500 million...

When preparing with her space suit for travel, she let it be known she wanted to put the American flag on one sleeve and as an inspiration to Iranian women, the Iranian flag on the other sleeve. She was pressured by the U.S. government and the Russian government to rethink her idea. She agreed to not make political statements while in space. I feel compelled to ask, why? I read about this in the Wall Street Journal's online wrapup and I am as baffled as they are as to the reasoning of discouraging a voice of reason coming through in a symbolic way. Why in the world when we are in the middle of such a void of moderate Muslim voices would this woman be pressured to be silent? Educational institutions in this country, like Harvard, allow hateful, devisive voices like Mohammad Khatami's to be heard yet this woman is silenced. Where is our common sense?

People like me are asking, daily, where are the moderate Muslim voices? Where are those who can come forward and denounce the hateful actions of the extreme fringe of the religion? It has been five years now since that morning on 9/11 yet we are still seeking reason and productive dialogue. Yesterday the United Nations allowed the fanatical leader of Iran to stand in front of their assembly of world leaders and rant about the vision he has for the world. He sees a world where the United States is not in existance at the end of this century. He sees a world where Israel is wiped off the map. He says there was no Holocaust. He says the U.S. is the oppressor and the cause of the problems of the world. He has joined with leaders like Hugo Chavez and calling for the destruction of America.

The IslamoFacists calling for death to America, death to the Christians and Jews, the infidels, are protesting the Pope's recent speech. The Pope was calling for a dialogue among religious factions to have a vehicle for peace and understanding. I am not Catholic and have no dog in that fight, but now the protesting Muslims are verifying the Pope's statements. They are protesting with signs threatening the life of the Pope, of Christians, of Jews. They burn the Pope in effegy. The Pope before this new one was shot by a Muslim.

On a different note, how cool was it that the Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, spoke at the memorial service for Steve Irwin? The eulogy made by Steve's young daughter blew me away. She is quite an amazing 8 year old.

"Truth and justice has to prevail." - Duane "Dog" Chapman, the Bounty Hunter.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


After almost two days devoted to air conditioning issues, I am pleased that the house is back to normal this morning. Son and I got a good night's sleep thanks to a newly fixed ac system. It is not pleasant, as a woman who can experience a hot flash at any given time, to try to sleep in a hot room. The fan I aimed on myself wasn't much help. Poor son had to sleep downstairs on the couch instead of his own bed as the upstairs was too hot. But after numerous phone calls to the repair service, to hubby in Wyoming and a big dent in the checkbook, it's all good now.

The most irritating fact of the ac problems is that hubby had ordered a fan motor to replace the one in the system. He could have done the whole fix himself, as in a previous life he serviced heating and ac units, but no, as usual, he is out of town when this stuff comes to a head. At least he was in a spot where he could be reached.

I will watch President Bush later this morning make his speech at the U.N. I won't be watching the Iranian president's speech this evening.

I was reading an opinion piece written by the screenplay writer of "The Path to 9/11" published in yesterday's Wall Street Journal. He described writing the screenplay and the reaction to it. He described the sense of duty he felt in telling the whole story and using the actual findings in the 9/11 Commission report as his foundation.

The man, Cyrus Nowrasten, is the son of Iranian parents, who fled Iran and that oppressive way of life. He was raised with a strong appreciation of his country, instilled by his grateful parents. He is not Muslim. He is not a conservative zealot. He is not best friends with Rush Limbaugh. He does not appreciate being ethnically profiled as a way of dismissing his writing skills. The L.A. Times, "characterized me by race, religion, ethnicity, country-of origin and political leanings --wrongly on four of five counts.", according to the op-ed. He was born in Boulder, Co. He describes himself as devoutly American. How is that for a terrific description? When asked if the L.A. Times has a new policy of this type of labeling, the reporter had no response.

Seems it is acceptable to label conservatives as some sort of right wing zealots but don't label the other side of the aisle.

"The Path to 9/11" was intended to remind us of the common enemy we face. Like the 9/11 Report itself, it is meant to enable us to better defend ourselves from a future attack. Past is prologue, and 9/11 is merely another step in an escalating Islamic fundamentalist reign of terror. By dramatizing the step-by-step increase in attacks on America -- all of which, in fact, occurred -- we are better able to see the pattern and anticipate the future. That was the point of the series, its only intention. Call it the canary in the coal mine. Call it John O'Neill in the FBI." Past is prologue - I love that. That's my new favorite saying.

He finishes up the article by publicly thanking Disney CEO Rober Iger and ABC for not bending to the demands of the Clinton people to pull the movie from the network showing. He thanked them for standing up to the threats of Democrat senators on the floor of the Senate - unprecedented behavior. Hey, I thought it was those mean conservatives that suppressed movies and books.

And on a contrasting note - The Toronto Film Festival, basking in the glow of showing a movie all about a Brit's idea of what America's foreign policy should be and what a great idea it is to show a sitting American president assassinated, as awarded the film an award. It was awarded the Fipresci prize, chosen by international critics. It was noted by the jury "for the audacity with which it distorts reality to reveal a larger truth." Yeah, ok.

Tonight on A&E Dog and his family speak about the recent arrest and all. They are out after posting a $300,000 bond.

"Courage is not the towering oak that sees storms come and go; it is the fragile blossom that opens in the snow." - Alice Mackenzie Swaim

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Just Another Day In Paradise

Hubby left for Wyoming this morning, after my appearance on the C-Span program. Ha! He called a little bit ago and landed in Salt Lake City. He has rented a big ole SUV for the 200 mile jaunt to the rig site in Wyoming. He called while he stopped at a convienence store for something to drink and snack on. It's snowing and sleeting there! Holy cow. I told him to take it easy on the road, he's not used to those conditions. He may be a native Hoosier, used to heavy snow and all, but he's been a proud resident of the South for many years now.

Check it - I'm watching a marathon of Dog, the Bounty Hunter on A & E this afternoon. Just started and I happened upon it by surfing, trying to find something to pass the time with as I putter around, laundry and all that fun stuff. I love Dog. That may seem out of character for me to you but if you knew me, you would not be surprised at all.

I hope AC and Mahala, pals in the blogging universe, are watching, too.

Tuesday night his family will speak about the arrests of him, Tim and Leland on a warrant for a catch he made in Mexico 2 or 3 years back. Dog brought in Andrew, the heir to the Max Factor cosmetics fortune from Mexico. He was wanted for many rapes of young women, using the date rape drug and video taping them, too. Real class act, that one. Mexico authorities claim it was against their laws as Dog is a private citizen, not law enforcement. Blah, blah.

Dog's attorney claims too much time has passed now to prosecute them. We'll see how it all plays out.

My guys and I are quite the diverse group as far as interests go. All of us are interested in so many subjects and parts of life. I would be hard pressed to think of a subject to discuss that one of us couldn't be a part of. That sounds odd but true. Never a dull moment.

Max is recovering from his visit to the vet this morning. Son and I took him for shots. Seems he goes every 6 months now for some shot or another. We gave him some happy pills before the excursion and he was a good boy. Our vet gives him the vaccines through nasal application instead of so many individual shots in the rump. He doesn't like it but it gets right into the bloodstream that way, as the vet tells us.

About to get some rain. I told hubby to send down some cooler, drier air. We could use it.

Justice for Dog, Tim and Leland... Hold that thought.

A Great Beginning

This morning is off to a great start. You know I am a C-Span junkie. I was sipping my freshly brewed Starbucks, I chose Italian Blend, Bold, and saw an author making an appearance that I am interested in. I just bought a book, The Blog Of War, by Matthew Currier Burden. I called into the show and was the first call! I got to congratulate the author on a great book.

I have enjoyed the author's blog, as well. His blog is and offers a point of view from those in the know about the military. He is a former Marine himself. He entered service at the age of 17. He knows what he is talking about.

I recommend his book. He uses blogs from all political views and not just his own views. It is a very fair book.

I'm all smiley now!

Friday, September 15, 2006


Two women of note have left us this week. I note their passings with these remarks:

Ann Richards died Wednesday in Austin. A former governor of the State of Texas, she is remembered for her sharp tongue and opening doors for women in Texas state politics. She conquered addictions to perscription drugs and alcohol and went on to rise to the top in the world of politics. She mentored and encouraged women to enter politics at all levels. I had very little in common with her, politically, but I respect how she persued her passions.

Last night brought the passing of Oriana Fallaci. If this name does not ring a bell with you, I strongly encourage you to read a book or two of her's and you will marvel at her strength as a human being. Oriana Fallaci was an Italian writer, a well known war correspondent and passionately opposed to the fanatic Muslims who have hijacked the religion of Islam in today's world. Like Ann Richards, Oriana had cancer and died in her home in Florence, Italy.

Ms. Fallaci was completely open and honest in her search for truth. She stood up to powerful men of the world, Yasser Arafat, Henry Kissinger, Ayatollah Khomeini and dared them to retaliate.

She would not submit. She had a pair.

Her books were not allowed to be sold in the famous bookstore in San Francisco, City Lights, which is particularly ironic as their reputation is one of selling books no one else will sell due to controversy. They banned her books and insulted customers who came in and asked for them.

Her books: The Force of Reason, and The Rage and The Pride, are well worth your time. She was a woman of honor, integrity, and unending personal strength. She was amazing.

RIP, ladies.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Why Do You Blog?

Tonight as I ready the coffeemaker for tomorrow morning's java, I get a treat. I will get to choose which of the bags of beans I have at the ready to open. I stocked up recently when Target ran Starbucks coffee on sale. I have five different ones from which to choose. It's the simple things in life that give us the most pleasure, isn't it? I realize I'm a bit obsessive about my morning brew, but I am an addict and I'm not rehabbing! I set out the coffee mugs for hubby and me, along with a spoon for stirring the creamer into our steaming mugs of freshly poured coffee. All I have to do is push the button and it goes. Walk to the fridge, retreive the creamer and I'm all set. I pour a cup for hubby and take it to him and pour myself one. We both are of the routine of having 2 cups during the waking up and pulling ourselves together process each morning.

Another daily routine I now joyfully anticipate is blogging. I began this blog a little more than a year ago to hone up my writing skills. Feeling a bit rusty and occassionally braindead after being a stay at home mom all these years, I have been studying grant writing as a new career path. Our son will be going off to college in a couple of years and the days will be my own. Grant writing has been an interest since I am a long time volunteer in the world of non-profits. When I was involved on a daily basis with opening a children's museum in Lafayette, I became familar with the importance of good grant writing up close and personal. There are a lot of ins and outs of the process and it requires being educated on the current requirements and what foundations are seeking causes to which they can donate. I take workshops when I can and hope to be actively involved with our son's school as a volunteer grant writer. As my skills grow, I hope to turn this knowledge and interest into an income producing venture.

This blogging thing has really snuck up on me. I find myself addicted to the world of blogs and my new friends. The friends part is an unexpected bonus for me. I read blogs written by women, mostly. Most of these blogs share my basic world view and all are interesting to me for one reason or another. I don't waste time with blogs that irritate me. Life's too short. I do read a couple of blogs with differing political views but they are pleasantly written and not disrespectful to anyone. Politics remains the passion of my life, outside of my family and my spirit.

Some blogs I've read for more than a year now and I feel as though the bloggers are friends. I would feel completely comfortable sitting down and having a cup of coffee or a meal with them. Any time. Any place. I love the photography Roxanne shares with us, I am in awe of Jennifer's writing gift, A.C. and Beverly share stories I can relate to, SuZan and Sheri and Liz are fellow Texans, Karen connects me with my birth state and it's Gulf coast, Jessica gives me a younger, newer married prospective.

I miss early morning quiet coffee time every morning with Meritt. A lot. She stays close with comments and I'm grateful for that.

My blogroll is not very long, intentionally. I am rather picky about who I share time with. I hope I can return the level of friendship to them that I receive.

And so it goes.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The Wrap Up

And now I have gotten to the bottom of the emergence of my troll. I guess all those formative years of reading Nancy Drew mysteries has paid off. My mamaw, who got me hooked on them, would be proud.

I simply could not figure out, how after all of this time of blogging, all of a sudden a troll pops up telling me what an awful, war monger, racist, idiot I am. I didn't know what brought it on.

In the last comments of his he finally referenced my alleged bad behavior. He claims I have been spewing forth on a blog run through the website of the Houston Chronicle. So, I checked it out. I do have the Chronicle on my blogroll as I do look at one, only one, section of blogs there. It's the political blogs (duh) and I only read one of the 4 offered there. Frankly I had no idea who this person was and what he blogged about.

Well, he's a cartoonist, of the political cartoon variety. I don't look at cartoons, political or comic strip kind. I've never been interested in cartoons, even as a kid. And the trolly is right, this person is truly vile in her comments. I traced comments back to August and found what must have set Trolly off. And her name is Karen. She doesn't use a website with her name, though... That's the first clue. I always have my name and blog site listed in comments I leave on blogs.

I don't leave negative comments. I don't see the point. I don't engage in the blogs that go back and forth in discussion (argument) form. I don't have the patience for it, or the attention span to remember who said what and keep up.

It's silly, really, to waste time on blogs that you know will only irritate you. I feel guilty enough with the time I spend in front of a computer screen as it is now, I sure don't need to spend time even more uselessly. No one is going to change anyone else's mind anyway. No one is going to change this old girl's mind, that's for sure!

Also, I am somewhat offended that trolley would link my style of writing with the other Karen's comments. It is simply not the tone of my blog. Anyone can spew, it doesn't take much intellectual effort to blast forth with ugly statements.

I do support the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, so maybe that makes me a war monger. I'm not racist, or stupid, thank you very much. And I am not a liar, if anything I get into trouble with frequency for being too honest and not filtering thoughts out before they leave my mouth.

So, trolly, you owe me a very large apology. My name is not so unusual that there would be more than one women with it in the nation's fourth largest city.



Sipping the last of some French Roast, Private Selection. Son home today with a late summer cold. Poor guy coughs and coughs. Tonight I go to a parent's meeting for Juniors at school.

Poor trolly, he seems to be off his meds. If he were not guilty he would not be so loud. He thinks I have responded to a blog and that my comments don't track back to my blog. Anyone who receives my comments knows I always use my name and blogsite. He also claims I was banned somewhere. News to me. I am deleting him from now on, thus freeing him up to get a life. Bless his heart.

I have been reading pieces written by Arabs and Iraqis in particular about the anniversary of 9/11. I have been reading a blog of interest, Iraq the Model, concerning operations there. Remember our friend Abu Danny? He was very informative during his visit with us a couple of weeks ago. I so admire his strength of character and his hopes for his country. He balances this with the desire to get a green card now and come to join his daughter and her husband in Michigan. He isn't Arab, but he is Iraqi so his perspective is interesting. I pray for his success and safety. He is a good man. He is a proud man.

It is quite discouraging that even a remembrance of the 5th anniversary of 9/11 is political fodder. Is it too much to ask that the people of this country come together for one day and put politics aside? Coming together as Americans, not Republicans and Democrats, would be a huge achievement and necessary in this long struggle against those hell bent to destroy us.

Whether or not you believe the war in Iraq is a part of the war on terrorism, the inclusion of the war into the president's speech Monday night to the nation is acceptable without being partisan. The president believes the war in Iraq is the central front of the war on terrorism now. He remains steadfast in his belief that the people of Iraq are worthy of basic human rights and freedom. A flourishing democracy in Iraq will lay the foundation for other democracies in the region. None of these ideas are new and the president has carried the same message since 9/11/2001. You may not agree with this premise and that's what makes our country great. No one is afraid of voicing opposition. We are a free people.

Now, if the president took partisan political shots in his speech, that would be a different matter. He didn't point out Senator Rockefeller's statement that Iraq would be ok with Saddam still in power now. Even though he had the same intelligence the president and his staff had, as he is on the Senate Intelligence Committee, and he voted for the policy of regime change, ousting Saddam, during the Clinton administration and voted in favor of going into Iraq.

The president didn't point out the fact that Senator Harry Reid, the minority leader in the Senate, bragged to an audience at a fundraiser that he had "killed" the Patriot Act, a vital tool in the war on terrorism.

The president remained above the fray. The speech was worthy of the occasion. He struck the right chord.

"Five years after that awful day, it's time for all Arab-Americans, and Arabs around the world, to protest against Islamic fascism, to raise our voices - and, where necessary, our arms - against these tyrants until their plague of terror has been driven from the face of the earth forever." - Emilio Karim Dabul, freelance writer and PR consultant living in New Jersey, author of an op-ed entitled "One Arab's Apology". The op-ed ran in the New York Post 9/12/2006

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Troll Talk

I have a troll on my commenting section. If you are a regular commentor, please do not be put off by his spewing forth with nonsense. Freedom of speech is only for the left side of the political aisle, you know.

Poor trolly thinks I have commented on another's blog and he didn't like what I said. I have no idea who he is or which blog he is speaking about, but that doesn't matter. They can dish it out but their responses to arguments are to personally attack the other person. What else is new.

Anyhoo, I have left up some of the trolls and their comments for now. Hubby has taught me how to id folks and it is all printed out for the record. A girl can't be too careful these days. Lots of unhinged people out there. A resident computer genius is helpful.

Further attacks will probably be deleted. I don't need the bad air around. If the discussion was respectful and serious, it would be a different matter.

Now you know. I appreciate all of your support.

And So It Goes

Hubby got me hooked on watching NASA tv this morning, observing the astronaut outside the space vehicle doing his work while floating in space. That takes an incredible amount of courage from where I sit. Hubby was watching while going about his pre-work stuff this morning. He was up around 3:00 and watching shows he's taped - like Deep Space 9 - and computing. He is preparing to go to Wyoming. Lucky him.

So what was all the tortured cries from the Clinton people all about anyway concerning the "Path to 9/11" movie? I watched the whole thing and I don't get it. ABC lost their committment to the original script and edited out some scenes, about 30 minutes worth it looked like to me. But if their administration was there the eight years leading up to the attack on our soil and the new Bush administration was there for 8 months, after being delayed in the transition due to Al Gores's temper tantrum over recounting the recounts, then who would have more "blame" if that is what the story concerned? Just common sense. All these points were brought out in the written report put into book form from the 9/11 Commission. I bought the book, I read it. It's all there. I guess the Clinton people assumed the largely apathetic American people would never bother to educate themselves on the history of terror attacks affecting this country.

I found it interesting that the fringe of the left who are so quick to label President Bush and his administration with the Nazi label were so adamant about banning this movie from being shown on network t.v. Wow. And, President Clinton, again asserting himself onto the stage, had his lawyer write to ABC and demand it not be shown. Again, wow. I saw none of this outrage towards Michael Moore and his movie. If the Clinton people are just all about honesty, doesn't honesty apply to both sides?

Those who ridiculed President Bush for finishing up with the young children in Sarasota, Florida while reading a book to them and not causing them undue panic, are they the same ones who Jamie Gorelick was referring to when she said the ABC movie shouldn't be shown to protect the children? If she was so concerned with protecting the children she would have never thrown up the wall between the CIA and FBI preventing them from working together on terrorism issues.

Where is the left in demanding the movie to be distributed in this country with the theme of President Bush's assassination not happen? This movie, made by a Brit, is centered on the assassination of a sitting President, photoshopped with his head on an actor's body, and how the evil U.S. prosecutes his alleged killer. Not bothering to deal with anything but taking a swipe against our justice system. It smacks of incredible arrogance. Oh, those intellectual Brits...

And on the flip side of Brits, how cool was it so see Margaret Thacher with V.P. Cheney and Mrs. Cheney yesterday at the Pentagon's 9/11 remembrance service? She is one incredible woman.

"We're all lucky to be here today and able to say what deserves saying, and if you say it a lot, it won't make it common and so unheard, but known and absorbed." - Peggy Noonan

Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11, 2006

"We will not tire. We will not falter. We will not fail." - President George W. Bush

God Bless America

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Shabbir Ahmed

With a great sense of respect and humility, I am remembering a 9/11 World Trade Center victim, murdered as he worked by bin Laden's Islamo facist devotees.

I am proudly a small part of Dale's blogging tribute to the 2996 victims murdered on that day five years ago. Dale called upon 2996 bloggers to each be given a name of a victim to remember as we approach the fifth anniversary of the worst terrorist attack on our soil.

Dale said, "We will honor them by remembering their lives, and not by remembering their murderers." Visit the website for all the names and bloggers involved -

I do not have personal knowledge or memories of the victim chosen for me to remember. I took information about Shabbir Ahmed from a site called Wall of and read a very nice obituary of Mr. Ahmed.

Shabbir Ahmed was 45 years old on September 11, 2001. Leaving early for work was his habit. He left his home at 4:00 a.m. to be there by 6:00 a.m. We was known for being punctual and never missing a day of work. He was an employee of the restaurant at the top of the World Trade Center, Windows on the World. He was a banquet waiter, securing his job through his older brother who was a cook there. The brother, Mosobbir, left for employment at an uptown hotel after the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center but Ahmed stayed. He loved his job but hoped for better for his children.

Ahmed was one of six children originally from Bangladesh. He came to this country in 1982 and began his job at Windows on the World. He lived his dreams through his children. He wanted his children to make good grades and go to college. He dropped out of college to come to the U.S. and it was a great source of pride when his daughter Nadia received a commendation from Brooklyn Borough President Howard Golden for straight A's in fifth grade. She graduated as valedictorian.

Ahmed enjoyed growing tomatoes, squash and the "hottest chiles in the world", according to his brother. His brother said, "We are fun people. We enjoyed life. Somebody put a stop to it for the meantime."

Seventy-eight other employees of the restaurant lost their lives on that day five years ago.

Ahmed left behind a wife,Jeba, a son Thanbir age 16, and two daughters, Salma age 19, and Nadia, age 12. A memorial service was held for him at Jamaica Muslim Center in Queens.

Ahmed was a Muslim immigrant from Bangladesh living in Marine Park, Brooklyn. He loved to go fishing and did so on weekends. It was an activity that reminded him of his native country.

Ahmed is missed and remembered by many.

Friday, September 08, 2006

The Worm Turns

In the upcoming issue of Guitar One Magazine, a list will be published of the best guitar solos in rock music. Topping the list as number one is Jimi Hendricks. He is on the list for a couple of tunes. I would have made the number one pick as Jimmy Page for Stairway to Heaven, but he is number 5 or 6, I think. I heard this on the radio this morning taking son to school and running errands. I think the issue comes out September 19.

So, we hear of the "editing" ABC is doing on "The Path to 9/11" set to air Sunday and Monday nights. I told you that would happen, didn't I? At a breathtaking level of hypocracy being shown, the open minded, freedom of speech loving, Democrats on Capitol Hill have made some incredible threats to the network to influence the production. Yesterday, we saw Sen. Harry Reid, from Nevada call for the network to pull the movie and just not run it. We saw Reid and Sen. Chuckie Schumer of New York use a vailed threat that the license of ABC could run into trouble with the government if the movie is shown. Wow. I thought it was the evil Republicans who were the ones to use dictatorial practices.

This movie is based on the 9/11 Commissions's report. It does have some dramatization as it is a movie, after all. The problems for the Clintonistas is that is shows the events leading up to 9/11, while they were in power. President Clinton called for ABC to not run the movie, too. He is still trying to cobble together some kind of legacy for his 8 year taxpayer-funded romp around the world and doesn't want to have more tarnish rubbed into the record. Sandy Berger, the former National Security Advisor to Clinton, was caught and convicted of stealing government documents from the National Archives just before he was to testify, under oath, to the 9/11 Commission. He was stuffing the papers into his trousers. Nothing suspicious there, right?

John Podesta, former chief of staff for Clinton, now runs a liberal activist think tank in D.C. So he led a letter writing campaign to ABC demanding the movie not run. Over 25,000 letters arrived at ABC. ABC stated yesterday that some minor editing has been done now.

Where was the left's indignation of false statements being made in Michael Moore's 9/11 movie? That movie, embraced by every liberal on the planet particularly in Hollywood, even was awarded with an Academy Award. Jimmy Carter gained a new best friend and they sat together at the Democractic convention. Anyone on the left claiming that it was wrong to make up lies about a sitting president over anti war sentiments? No. They couldn't rush dinner invitations quick enough to Moore and his wife. When conservatives voiced complaints over a made for tv movie on the life of Ronald Reagan, did CBS "edit" scenes from that movie? No. It was shown as it was orginally meant to be shown. And don't forget the upcoming movie to be trotted out at the Canadian film festival on 9/10 showing the assassination of President Bush, using his real face. Anyone on the left have a problem with that? No.

Tom Kean, Co-Chair for the 9/11 Commission said he saw nothing untrue portrayed in the movie. He served as a consultant and screened the movie with others in Washington. If we don't look back clearly and fully into history, we won't learn how to avoid tragedy in the future.

This strong arming of ABC smacks of the old days in the Clinton administration. Remember the use of the IRS audits to intimidate people viewed as enemies of the administration? Remember the people on the payroll placed there to discredit the "bimbos" and potential sex scandals? Remember Hillary Clinton claiming the existance of a "vast right wing conspiracy" on the Today Show? Remember that the democrats placed Jamie Gorelick on the 9/11 Commission, even though she was deputy Attorney General under Janet Reno and the engineer of the wall thrown up between the FBI and CIA prohibiting the two agencies from sharing intelligence. This wall of secrecy has a direct link to the 9/11 tragedy.

So, all this righteous indignation from the left is quite amusing this time around. They aren't used to Hollywood not being a mouthpiece for them.

Richard Clarke, former counter-intelligence head, was let go by the Bush administration and this unleashed his furor in retaliation. He wrote a book blaming the administration solely for the 9/11 attack. Again, President Bush had only been in office for 8 months. Michael Scheurer, former CIA agent head of the bin Laden unit, completely discredited Clarke, as others have, and states Clinton had 8 to 11 times to get bin Laden. Clarke doesn't like the ABC movie. Nor do Madeline Albright, parade watching partner of lunatic North Koreans, or Tim Roemer, 9/11 democrat appointee. Roemer enjoys playing pundit on talk shows now and his favorite talking point is the failure, in his mind, of the administration to implement the commission's recommendations. He doesn't say, however, that 80% have been implemented to date. I guess the administration doesn't have the right to disagree with any of the recommendations.

I hope ABC finds the courage to do the right thing. I'll be watching.

"The war we fight today is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive ideological struggle of the 21st century." - President George W. Bush addressing the American Legion

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Good Wins Out

It has been seven years since the Columbine school shootings tragedy in Colorado. The nation was shocked into paying attention to the fact that troubled teens have access to weapons and no longer feel the need for emotional restraint.

I remember thinking about the parents of the two boys that murdered their fellow students. Surely this whole, senseless brutality could have been avoided. I understand busy lives. I understand teens wanting privacy and their own "space", but why in the world would kids be left alone so much that they could be into weapons and weapon development while their parents looked the other way? It seemed they were part of an upper middle class lifestyle that places possessions and the pursuit of these possessions above family life. The children are the ones who pay the dearest.

I remember thinking of the parents of the victims. Imagine learning your teen's school was under seige by crazed, gun-toting boys. Imagine sending your child off to school and never seeing him or her alive again. Or imagine being the wife of the teacher killed. It is hard to wrap your brain around it all.

Weapon scares are a little more common than you might think, I would venture to say. At my son's high school, a 6 year old public school in a "good" part of town, they have not gone untouched by this. In his freshman year, two students robbed a food worker, at gunpoint, after school. In his sophomore year, a student brought a gun to school in a backpack. Another student told a teacher and the gun was confiscated. That is what the students are taught. They are taught to tell a teacher or someone in the office if they see anything wrong.

Last week, Dana Scott came to my son's school. She is the sister of Rachel Scott, a Columbine victim. Rachel's father started the Rachel's Challenge nonprofit program after Rachel was murdered. The father, sister and brother of Rachel now partner with celebrities like Chuck Norris to take their program into schools around the country and abroad.

The program presents challenges to the students to encourage acts of kindness and compassion, to bring positive change to school. The goals of the program are to eliminate prejudice, set goals, chose positive influences, demonstrate random acts of kindness and encourage people to help others. Dana Scott offers concrete suggestions to the students like starting clubs and inspiring others through actions.

Yes, it sounds like touchy-feely let's all hold hands and sit in a circle kind of stuff. But it is probably somewhat effective to the ears of teens not yet so cynical and worldly as adults. You have to figure if it inspires a few kids to reach out and help within the school community then it isn't a waste of time.

My son wasn't particularly impressed with the presentation. He tends to be on the cynical side. He has a very realistic world view for someone his age. But he thought it was "ok" so I'll just hope a little something filtered into his brain. He's a good kid but we can all do a little better, right?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Fido Dines Out

A Houston City Councilman is readying a resolution that would allow dogs to accompany their masters on patio sections of restaurants. Yes, that's right. Dining with other peoples' dogs. I think surely there must be something a little more important to take up City Council time. Americans take being spoiled to new heights. We are not France. We are America. Let the Europeans show how terribly sophisticated they are by carrying around their little fou fou doggies and letting big dogs sit by the table. I'll pass.

I told you the outcries about the newest story of 9/11 would be coming. Today we hear the indignation and demands that ABC pull the movie. It is a two part movie about what led up to that horrific day. This movie is a little different, though, as it names names, points fingers and lays blame on actual people. No sugar coating. And, before you ask, yes, both Clinton and President Bush's administrations are blamed. President Bush was only in office for 8 months, however, so the Clinton folks are blamed more than the Bush folks. Makes sense, doesn't it, when you compare 8 years to 8 months? The first attack on the World Trade Center was in 1993, after all. As I mentioned before, this movie was screened recently in D.C. and the Clintonistas were all out of whack. Too bad is what I say. Don't watch it if your wringing your hands over it. And of course the fact that a more conservative filmmaker made the movie is burning their butts, too. Hollywood's idea of conservative might be a little different than my idea, though. I'll be watching and form my own opinion, thank you.

The Discovery Channel has been showing 9/11 related stories this week. I'm sure they will up to the anniversary. Last night was about the health issues for the firefighters who worked at the site. It was a big ole blame Bush thing, but that's to be expected. Like anyone had ever handled that kind of disaster before and had all the answers for everyone. It's all tragic, to be sure. Blaming one man or Christy Whitman who headed EPA at the time sounds a bit over the top.

Did you catch the Katie Show last night? I haven't watched the evening network news in years but did last night to check her out. Won't be watching anymore. It's like Entertainment Tonight meets the liberal elites. We got a story by Lara Logan who was embedded with the Taliban in Afghanistan, yes, that's right. Did she tell our soldiers about their location when she was finished with her story? Then there was TomKat's baby photo. And the new segment allowing people to do a 90 second commentary. Last night was movie maker Morgan Spurlock. And Katie interviewed Thomas Friedman so he could bash the administration over Iraq. So we got the full circle of liberal world. The timeline of CBS telling opinions and pushing agendas instead of reporting just the facts, Jack, continues. Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather, Katie. Bleech.

My guys are going to the first Scouts meeting tonight. Son's last year of Scouts. At the end of this school year he has to be done with the requirements of Eagle rank. He's turned 17 now and the cut off for meeting the deadline of doing the Eagle project is the age of 18. I spoke to the Scoutmaster last night, as he called to remind us of the meeting, and mentioned all that to him to refresh his memory. It's a small troop and some of the guys younger seem to get a little differential treatment. I try not to say anything. The Scoutmaster's son is a year younger than my son and he did his Eagle project summer before last and to top it off, it was a lame and too easy project. Oh well. We'll see how it all goes. They are voting tonight to determine if they'll go camping this weekend or the weekend of the 232rd. They wil be doing the water skiing badge work.


Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Put the White Shoes Up

Trying to get on track this morning. My alarm went off at 6:00 this morning instead of my normal 5:00 and I have been playing catch up ever since. I forgot to reset it from the weekend. I don't like to be rushed as I'm starting the day so I get up with lots of time to let my brain warm up. And I really love the early morning quiet.

Time to put up the white shoes and purse. Living in Texas, though, the former lines of fashion faux pas are somewhat blurred due to almost year round warm weather.

I noticed lots of police cars this morning as I was taking son to school. I was very happy to notice this development. As I have mentioned previously in posts, our part of town is experiencing an increase in crime. About a month ago, a man was murdered in a robbery attempt as he was washing his truck early one morning, pre-dawn, at a self-service car wash on the busy major street bordering our subdivision. The man was a Guatemalan immigrant who thought it would be safer to wash his truck at 5:00 in the morning rather than after work. His wife was in the truck watching him. He only had a few dollars in his wallet, yet the 18 year old decided to kill this regular, working man as he robbed him, in front of the man's wife. This thug's accomplices were referred to as juveniles. All four have since been caught. They were caught due to the neighborhood watch style of security in this subdivision, not due to help from Houston Police Department. This murder was a tipping point for many who live here. Finally, after a year of escalating crime and uneasiness, the homeowners were granted a town hall style meeting with city council members and city police. After two of those meetings, the citizens demanded a meeting with the mayor and police chief when the murder victim's story made the nightly news and front page news. This meeting happened last week. The crowd was so large that the very big church hosting this meeting had to turn people away. About 2,000 attended by news accounts.

Well, since that meeting our section of town has been royally chastised by the local press, particularly the newspaper. You see, the journalists who think we are overreacting and demanding too much, don't live here. They live in other sections of town, much more chic and artsy than our area. I know this as a columnist was a guest speaker at a woman's club I belong to and he told us where he lived as part of a story he shared with us. We are being told we are uncaring and mean to expect more from the new residents of this community. Yes, the crimes are directly traced to Katrina evacuees living in the large apartment complexes bordering this subdivision and neighboring subdivisions. The evacuees are black and we are called racist and uncompassionate.

A parking lot, vacant after business hours, is a gathering place for the young males from the apartment complex neighboring my subdivision at night. They hang around for lack of anything else to do, I suppose. This is a source of problems that just now the police department is correcting, after repeated requests for extra patrols, etc from the city.

I don't think race has anything to do with wanting to be safe in your own home. Residents have been robbed at gunpoint during regular daylight hours. One man was robbed by a gun welding thug at 9:00 in the morning on Saturday as he was cleaning his garage. Then the guy walked on into the home and robbed the wife inside of her purse and jewelry. Just a regular Saturday morning, homeowners doing normal chores.

This subdivision and surrounding ones are typically upper middle class areas. We have a diverse population and age groups from young marrieds to retired folks. Many have lived here for years and years. The subdivision we live in was built in the late '60's and our neighbors have lived here from the beginning. That says something when people live in a spot for so long. We chose this area for many reasons. We like older neighborhoods with trees and firm roots in the city. We like a wide range of ages of residents and we like the convenience of this area. We are not all the way into the inner city yet not too far out. We are in a family friendly, active spot.

Of particular interest to me was a column in the Sunday newspaper here written by a reporter who had gone to the Astrodome last year to help with the Katrina evacuees as they arrived from New Orleans. She told some stories of how she helped. Then she begins her condescending piece on the lack of compassion now a year later by the residents at the town hall meeting with the mayor. This young, black woman journalist hasn't a clue. I don't know why she feels free to judge us as she talks of the shame of us and our perceived judgement of others less fortunate.

Our neighborhood is great. We are, on our block alone, a group of families who are white, black, Indian, middle eastern, and hispanic, and Asian. That is Houston. That is why we like living here. Our son is blessed to grow up knowing people from all over the world.

This is why our community is fighting back.

Monday, September 04, 2006

A Yellow Rose of Texas

Nellie Connally, former first lady of Texas, died Friday at her retirement community home. She was 87 years old. She was found at her desk writing thank you notes. What a magnificent way to go.

Nellie Connally was the last surviving person who was in the limousine in Dallas with President Kennedy when he was shot and killed. Her husband, John, was governor of the state at the time of the assassination.

She was well known in her life for her loyality of family and friends. She survived breast cancer in the late 1980's and from that time helped establish the Nellie B. Connally Breast Center at M.D. Anderson in Houston. She supported cancer research and education and counseled women newly diagnosed.


Done In By A Stingray

Strange news out of Australia. Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter, has died. He was filming a documentary off the coast of Australia and was stung by a stingray. The sting penetrated his chest, leaving a hole in his left side, and struck his heart.

He leaves a wife, an 8 year old daughter and a 3 year old son behind. A bizarre ending to a bizarre career.


Sunday, September 03, 2006

Saturday, September 02, 2006


Today we are celebrating our son's 17th birthday. We were up early around here to get the day's activities started. I gulped a cup of java and went to the bakery for son's birthday cake. He was up by the time I returned home. I lit the cool candles that spell out the words happy birthday and we sang the birthday song. Son made his wish, blew out the candles and we proceeded to enjoy the breakfast of champions, double chocolate fudge cake. Yes!

Son and hubby have left now and are on the way to pick up Abu Danny. He is still in town as he needs more training time. Son and hubby are taking him to NASA today. It'll be a fun birthday treat and a good trip for a guest in our city. Later tonight hubby and I will take son out eat.

Today another visitor to NASA will be Flat Stanley. If you've had a child in school, you know Flat Stanley. Our son did the project in the second grade. This Flat Stanley comes to us from Cranston, R.I. and the family of a fellow blogger. I volunteered to be the Texas stop for Stanley for Chris, at Two Babes and a Brain blog. I hope hubby can snap a fun shot of Stanley and Abu Danny together today.

I think Chris' three children, Jacob, Zachary and Kaileigh will enjoy learning about Texas and Stanley's Houston visit. Stanley is the vehicle Chris is using to teach her kids about living in other states and letter writing. They each wrote a letter to send with Stanley to introduce themselves, besides Chris' letter of introduction. They enclosed photos of themselves and a yummy lemonade mix that is famous in Rhode Island.

So, happy birthday to my baby boy. After 22 hours of labor, he arrived on Labor Day weekend and we have been blessed to have him in our lives since.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The Blame Game

Today is just not a good day for those on the far left of the political aisle. I blame President Bush.

The economy continues to hum along. The stock market is strong. Unemployment is at an all time low, again this month. The federal budget deficit is being paid off at an accelerated rate, unforeseen by even the GAO. Interest rates remain historically low and the housing market remains strong, especially in areas like mine. I blame President Bush.

This is an election year and the big event in November is rapidly approaching. What is the loyal opposition to this administration running on? What is their platform? Doom and gloom, the party of no thinks they need no real solutions to anything. In elections past it was a standard strategy to simply remain confident and try not to do anything to muddy the party in the minds of the voting public. Then the party out of power would sit back and expect to win seats in a non-presidential race year.

Times have changed, however. This current president has lead his party to victories in 2002 and 2004, despite the naysayers. Think back to 1994. During the first election cycle after the election of Bill Clinton, the Republicans were so unified and the general public was so outraged by what they were seeing in D.C. that the Republicans became a majority in the House for the first time in 40 years. Then a majority was established in the Senate. The biggest source of aggrevation for voters was the failed attempt of Hillary Clinton to socialize this nation's health care system. This is the same Hillary Clinton that jumped to her feet and applauded gleefully during the State of the Union address when President Bush spoke of the failed attempt to overhaul the Social Security system, thanks to the democrats. The Democrats, so selfishly clinging to the notion that Social Security is only an issue for the Democrats to deal with, torpedoed efforts to improve the system and guarantee it will be around when the baby boomers begin to retire en masse. I realize it doesn't matter to the likes of U.S. Senators, the wealthiest of Americans, but to ordinary voters it is a big deal. So, instead of applauding a positive development the Democrats were applauding themselves for doing nothing. Kick the can down the road.

Now we are told of a movie, made by a British citizen, that tells a story of the assassination of the sitting American president and how this plays out in the War on Terror. The story revolves around a plot that has President Bush shot and killed in October 2007. It shows a scene with the head of President Bush on the body of an actor portraying him. We are to believe this Brit when he says it is not a slam on President Bush and his policies. This Brit merely wants to explore the reaction in America to the President's death and how it would affect foreign policy and the War on Terror. Uh huh.

Yes, of course the man has a right to make and distribute this film. However, where does the role of responsibility come into play? Just because you can do something, does it mean you should do it? How responsible is it to have the film debut at a Canadian film festival on 9/10/2006? Yes, that's right. The date before the 5th anniversary of the worst attack on American soil by the Islamo facists trying to destroy us and our way of life. He blames President Bush for the troubles of the world and this is his vehicle. With whom was America at war on 9/11/2001?

President Clinton was offered bin Laden on several occasions. Clinton refused the offers. Why? He didn't want to sully his high polling numbers with something like the effects of foreign policy as it relates to the safety of the American people. Nevermind that keeping the population safe is solely the most important aspect of the oath of office he took when he was sworn in as president. He took that oath as seriously as he did his marriage vows, as it turns out. Do you think ABC will run the two part, 4 hour movie they have committed to run concerning the run up to 9/11/2001 and our foreign policies during previous administrations, now that it has been screened in Washington, D.C. and the Clinton administration has-beens were not giving it rave reviews? Do you think that might be because it is not the usual pablum that has been swallowed whole from the findings of the 9/11 Commission? The 9/11 Commission, while worthy of credit, was flawed from the very beginning. Jamie Gorelick, the deputy Attorney General to Janet Reno, was responsible for the wall of secrecy between the FBI and the CIA that brought about 9/11. Why was she allowed on the commission?

President Clinton focused soley on domestic policy. This president doesn't have that luxury. Eight months after being sworn in, the world forever changed for the American people. Under strong and courageous leadership, millions of people in foreign lands have been freed. Despite constant antics in the press and grandstanding former diplomats and important people, the truth of the last gasp of a full assault on the Bush administration has come to a whimpering end. Despite the railings of indignation of those who opposed the war in Iraq, the exposure of the real liars is coming through. After 3 long years and the indictment of Scooter Libby, former Ambassador Joe Wilson and former CIA agent Valerie Plame are shown to the world to be the outright frauds that they are. Wilson outted his own wife's identity to Richard Armitage, the deputy to Colin Powell in the State Department. Armitage and Powell were against the others in the administration planning the Iraq war. Armitage took it upon himself to allow the campaign of Joe Wilson to flourish in D.C. about how the President, Vice President, Karl Rove and Scooter Libbey were out to get him. That they were the ones to expose and endanger his wife, Plame, in response to Wilson's report from his trip to Niger, arranged by his wife. First he lied that his wife didn't set up the trip for him. Then he lied that the administration was out to get revenge when he cooked up a report after the trip to Niger that said Saddam wasn't after yellow cake to develop weapons.

Why did Armitage allow all of this to go on so long? A special counsel was appointed and the taxpayers picked up that tab. Libby is not charged with leaking identities. He is charge with perjury. This perjury involves what most of us would consider a lack of memory of events. Not the kind of perjury Clinton committed where he denied an affair and was impeached over lying to a grand jury. Where does Scooter Libby go to get back his reputation, money and time? A new book is coming out by David Corn and Michael Isikoff and names Armitage as the source of the leak. Corn is known for his Bush hatred and wrote a book about "Bush lies", complete with a website devoted to it. Isikoff you may remember is the journalist that wrote of the Quran flushing at Gitmo that wasn't, yet caused a riot in Afghanistan resulting in many deaths. He never apologized and still works for Newsweek like nothing happened. Still blaming President Bush.

So, this president carries on with the dual responsibilities of domestic and foreign policy. He is not running for office again. VP Cheney isn't running for office again. You would never know that to listen to the election year rhetoric of the Democrats. Yesterday the former Kerry campaign filed papers to open a lawsuit in Ohio to investigate the 2004 election outcome. They wuz robbed, I tell you. I say, go ahead. Keep looking at the past. It's a losing strategy. Voters pull the lever with the future in mind.

Oh, yeah, that's what the Dems are afraid of. The grown ups are in charge.

I blame President Bush.