The Countertop Chronicles

"Run by a gun zealot who's too blinded by the NRA" - Sam Penney of

Monday, May 30, 2005

River City, USA

We spent an enjoyable day traveling in and around Chattanooga. From the mountains to the river, I just love this part of the country.

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My son really loved cows. These may have been the first ones he ever got up close and personal with. When the mom decided to pee the look of wonder on his face at all the "pee pee" was priceless.

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The Southern Belle cruises the Tennessee River. This shot is from the river walk looking back at Chattanooga. That's Lookout Mountain in the distance.

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Chattanooga has really made an effort at turning itself around over the last 25 years. Perhaps the only other city in the entire country that has seen as dramatic of an urban renewal is New York City - and while I hate what New York has become, Chattanooga is one of the most family friendly and walkable cities around.

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This is the Walnut Street Pedestrian Bridge from the downtown/aquarium area over the Tennessee River to Coolidge Park, the Carousel and River Street Arts District.

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The Hunter Museum of American Art has just reopened after the lengthy construction of its new West Wing which houses special exhibits. Right now they have a tremendous Georgia O'Keeffe show complete with Alfred Steiglitz prints. This picture was taken from the pedestrian bridge.

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Coolidge Park has a historic carousel as well as nice grass areas, a fun fountain, lots of family friendly restaurants, and a bunch of kayak launches.

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The carousel cost $1 a ride for adults. My son rides for free. We dropped about $20 and spent a ton of time on it today.

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Driving back home, we went up Missionary Ridge for the sunset. The entire ridge is a national park, part of the Chickamauga and Chattanooga National Military Park - established in 1890 as the Nation's first military park. While Gettysburg is more famous - the battle of Chickamauga was perhaps even more bloody and while it was the Confederacy's last great victory, in hindsight, it spelled their eventual doom by sending the Union back to Chattanooga to replenish its troops over winter and allowing for Sherman's arrival and his eventual march to the sea the next spring.

It has stunning views, and the idea that someone had the idea of fighting a battle on its slopes is bewildering.

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If you get a chance to come on down, you really should. We are heading over to the Tennessee Aquarium later this week - the new Ocean Journey salt water wing just opened - as well as the Creative Discovery Museum. We'll probably also check out my son's favorite museum, the International Tow Truck Hall of Fame. I'll post pictures then.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Carnival of Cordite #15

Welcome to the fifteenth weekly Carnival of the Cordite.

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Coming on Memorial Day Weekend, I’d like to first dedicate this weeks Carnival to all the men and women in our armed services - past, present, and future - who made the ultimate sacrifice as well as to those who willingly place themselves in harms path to preserve the American way of life. One of those guys is the Collegiate Warrior who just shipped out to the Sandbox and has started a new blog to document his time there.

There is a saying you see on bumper stickers often. I saw it twice so far this weekend.

If You Can Read This, Thank A Teacher.
If You Can Read This In English, Thank A Soldier!

Truer words are rarely spoke. Jeff Soyer has an eloquent post up that you owe yourself to visit.

This is not a day for joy. It is not a day for a "Sale." It is or should be a solemn day where we remember those who have or are at this very moment serving our country. Many have made the ultimate sacrifice to preserve the freedoms we continue to enjoy. May God bless them and may He comfort their families. May we all give thanks to them and always remember them on Memorial Day, and every other day as well. Regardless of what you think of the merits of a particular war, these brave men and women chose to serve and protect and defend all of us. There are many more young servicemen and women buried elsewhere in this great country of ours, and overseas. There are also many still who are alive but living in poverty or lanquishing in our underfunded Veteran's Hospitals. Whatever your views on conflict, know that all who served in our Armed Forces deserve respect, honor, and a "thank you."

So to everyone in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, and National Guard, a big hearty well deserved thank you.

In addition to this Carnival I will be spending this Memorial Day weekend in the rural south with my wife celebrating our seventh anniversary and the third with our son (who got his first water gun earlier today) as well as shooting my most recent firearm acquisition - my BAG Day purchase - a U.S. Rifle, Cal. 30 M1
otherwise known as a Garand. For lots of information, check out Shooting In Eights. For information on shooting in the rural south, check out Technogypsy.

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When shooting that Garand this weekend, the rifle Gen. George S. Patton called - The greatest battle implement ever devised - I will be doing so with my family's own personal war hero - my wife’s father who served our country for over 30 years in places as remote and hostile as Korea, Vietnam (multiple times), the Cold War Front in Germany (where I was surprised to learn from him we often were involved in armed mini conflicts with Russian/East German forces) and the Middle East before ending up at the Pentagon on the staff of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Sometimes it seems like he has won more medals than I have hair on my head.

Of course, this weeks Carnival is up a bit late. There is a reason for that - even though I always seem to have reasons for getting Carnivals up late. But it is a they are good reasons. First, as you will soon be reading, there was a last minute development in one of my main stories this week. The second reason is a more pressing one, and that is that my father in law had a bypass earlier this year and while he is recovering nicely from the operation, there have been some complications requiring assistance with is care. As a result, over the last week, my wife and I have spent an inordinate amount of time caring for this otherwise 100% self sufficient American Hero. That care has included driving him and my mother in law down to Georgia this weekend from Washington D.C. - a trip which normally takes 8 hours and ended up taking us close to 24. Finally, blogger sucks (but you knew that). It has lost this post 3 times already. And, by lost I mean, vanished into the ether world.

The Right To Privacy

One of the big sticking points with gun owners is the constant attempt to create registries of who has what while the gun banners don't understand our anger at their efforts. Our lead story this week is about the decision of the Northwest Florida Daily News to violate the privacy of many Floridians by publishing on the internet the names and addresses of Florida's concealed handgun permit holders. I first learned about this from The Hight Road where at least two seperate threads arose discussing the paper's action (here and here). The response was pretty quick. Within no time, many folks in the blogsphere and on the gun boards revealed for all to see the names and home addresses (in some cases with pictures and directions) of publisher Tom Conner and his editors. However, when I read the papers unbelieveable response to some complaints I got seriously ticked off.
We published this public information because we believe there is public interest in knowing who in our area has a permit to carry a concealed weapon in public. Also, it is a public record, and the people who have concealed weapon permits appear to know it's a public record. We didn't publish the list due to any political viewpoint. I personally believe strongly in the Second Amendment right to bear arms. I also believe the public has a right to know who is carrying loaded concealed weapons in public places.

I hope this serves as an adequate answer to your email.

In response, I named the Tom Conner Asshole of the Week and decided to do a little browsing around. Turns out, if you go to the web page for the local county courthouse you can find all sorts of things about him and his family. I initially thought about publishing his wife’s name, their social security numbers, stuff about their mortgage, and information on his kid and ex wife. However, after talking to a few people whose opinions I respect, I decided to simply post a link to the information. but by Friday morning, within a day of it coming out that ALL THAT information was available, they had decided to pull down the list.

So, did they learn their lesson and pull the information down because of the blog and gun board outcry? Was it the fact that Mr. Conner realized that what goes around comes around? Or was this all simply part of the plan - to keep it up for a week and no more? We simply don't know yet, and while I tried to call the paper Friday morning, I have yet to speak with anyone (not their fault, I was only available to speak for a short time and will be calling again on Tuesday). For now, I am chalking it up as another internet victory for truth, justice, and the American way. In the meantime, I suggest these bozos and all the other anti gun newspaper staff's head on over to No Silence Here at the Knoxville News Sentinel where Les Jones has a gun advice for writers and editors.

Blogger Shoot

Speaking of Les Jones, I was hoping to get together with him today and to do some shooting. I am only about ninety minutes away from Knoxville in North Georgia and tried to get together with him once before. I don't think its going to happen though, because I need to help out with my father in law. We are going to try for some night later this week.

However, Jay G who posts at what used to be North Georgia Dogma but is now named after the Aerosmith LP Toys In The Attic, is looking to shoot with Northeastern Bloggers. In the meantime, Team Blogger Blast is getting underway in the Northwest. If you want to shoot with some bloggers - but don't know any personally, you can always enter a postal match. Og's running a series of 'em while Mr. Completely has what may be the most fun one to shoot.

Hotties With Guns

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Kim's got 'em. The first is extra sweet.
Gunchicks has more.
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SKS Owners For Kerry

Going from hotties with guns to old ugly hippies with guns is sort of like taking a sauna and then jumping buck naked into the snow. But, someones got to do it.
Plus, I like this guys spirit. We need folks on the other side of the aisle, and the more there are, the better our chances of saving the constitution. Last week's host Les Jones has the scoop.

Time For A Reload

Don't know if you bothered to check out the SKS Owner For Kerry. If you did, well then its time for a bit of reloading. Here ya go. Check it out. Don't worry, I'll wait.

There, feel better?

Reloaders are the homebrewers of the gun world. Being a one time homebrewer, I have been itching to get into reloading for awhile, but haven't gotten around to finish my bench yet. Hopefully it will happen soon cause it sure is fascinating. Speaking of which, the Libercontrarian has a first batch report.

For The Ladies

Since I've thrown up so many scantily clad women, I thought it was only fair to post something for all the ladies out there.

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Ban The Chefs

As Glenn Reynolds says . . . . Heh!

1911, a fine year

Chris Byrne is talking about his ultimate 1911.

Here's my Colt - my ultimate 1911 (what's funny about this picture?).

Others, of course, have a different outlook on life and prefer to think about what to get if your options are limited and what you must have regardless.

Serious Gun Porn

Zendo Deb has the details on this gorgeous Semi-automatic-revolver

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Sweet and sexy!

Seeing The Light

More and more people are coming over to our side. Speaking of seeing the light, Gunner has the coolest tacticle light I've ever seen on this AR-15.

On The Legislative Front

Being a sometime lobbyist, legislative stuff excites me, especially when its legislation that does good things - like makes gun purchases easier. When that kind of legislation gets some legs, then I get all giddy. Now, all you folks in Oregon, don't you want to make me giddy? Thats right, get on the phone and call your state rep!


A big round of applause and a hearty welcome goes out to the Great Lakes Shooting Sports Association which just went online. I linked to them earlier in this carnival. Did you all find their great post?

Condi, Condi, Condi.

Dave Hardy isn't letting up on the Condi Rice Larry Kind debacle. He has an update on what happened to the transcript.

Rim Fire Fun

What happens when a superstar gun blogger goes a shopping?
Jeff Soyer wanted soemthing fun, and I can't disagree with his choice!

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The Ruger 10/22, the funnest little rifle ever built. Of course, some people like Martini's

Speaking of rimfires . . . How about some race guns.

Accuracy In Reporting
While the Pajamapundit was asking If the border's are so porous, why is california wasting its time going after the good guys? . . . Jeff Soyer's weekly analysis on bias in the media included a wonderful report on the bias against the .50 Caliber. As part of the report, Jeff did something most members of the media fail to do . . . he contacted Ronnie Barratt of Barratt firearms to see if some quotes were indeed correct. Here is part of Barratt's response.
No military in the world is training its soldier to use the Barrett rifle to engage flying platforms of any kind. One would be quite foolish to suggest it, and more the fool to believe it, and regretfully, more to print it.

The continued defamation of Barratt and .50 Calibers by the Mainstream Media - and reliance on clearly false propoganda by the Nazi's at the Anti American Anti Constitution Gun Banning Groups is getting old. In response, I sent Jeff an email raising the rhetorical question of whether or not this might be an opportunity for Barratt to go on the offensive. Its tough to win a product defamation suit (or tortious interference with contract), especially in our modern anti gun court system, but enough is enough. The quality of information out there is so bad - on gun issues as well as everything else - that I think we are coming closer and closer to the time when Michael Crichton's prediction of information liability will actually become reality.
There is third method for vetting data that is on the horizon. It's not here yet, but I am convinced it is coming. I'm talking about product liability for information.

We live in an information society. Nearly one American in three is a knowledge worker. More people are knowledge workers in this society than are engaged in manufacturing. By and large, what these knowledge workers do is generate information. And our society is totally dependent on the integrity of information. Yet we still do not define information as a product. And as a result it has evaded the Quality Revolution that has transformed other industries.

But product liability is already enforced for maps and charts, and will soon be applied to other information products as well. It's absolutely essential for the future.

Last week in his Carnival turn, Les Jones requested that future Carnival hosts start a discussion about guns or gun rights in comments. I'd really like to explore this topic of information liability. To the lawyers out there - what hurdles do you see till its eventual acceptance. How could a movement of informational liability be expanded beyond mere defamation and tortious interference actions? What elements would need to be shown? What harms need to be proven?

For the non lawyers out there - can you think of examples where a favorite product, food, activity has been unfairly curtailed because of the distribution of false information - either by the media or more frightenly by the government? Does anyone know anyone who was physically harmed because of a reliance on falsly published information?

I look forward to reading your thoughts and will be posting mine too.

Thanks for stopping by and next week the Carnival should be returning to Resistance is Futile. You can keep up to date on the hosting situation by checking out the calendar. Also, if you see some typo or other error - or a link doesn't work, shoot me an email or post about it in the comments and I will fix it as soon as I can.

Be good and keep shooting.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Lawless DC Council Members

Did you know its illegal to drive in DC while talking on your phone?

In January 2004, the DC City Council passed the Distracted Driving Act 12-1. Amongst those voting in favor of it was Ward 2 Council Member Jack Evans.

Since that time (it actually became effective over the Summer of 2004), Chuck Ramsey and his cronies in the Metro DC Police Department have been issuing tickets left and right to motorists who make the mistake of answering their cell phones while driving. Its turned into a giant cash cow for the perpetually cash strapped DC government.

Well, I guess you would image my surprise as I sat in a taxi cab today driving down H street - from Connecticut Ave to NY Ave - at about 11:10 a.m. and watched as Council Member Jack Evans sat behind the wheel of his swerving black Chrysler Sebring Convertible with DC License Plates that said simply DC COUNCIL WARD 2 in the lane next to us chatting on a cell phone the whole way and almost causing an accident. Needless to say, the cop we passed at the corner of H and 15th paid no notice to Mr. Evan's lawlessness.

Its times like this I wish I had a camera phone - but of course the cop would have probably arrested me.


I was hoping to put up the Carnival this morning but there has beena development in one of the stories I was working on for it.

I hope to get things resolved and have it up either tonight or tomorrow. Sorry for the delay folks, but I hope this is worth it.

In the meantime, I did get my Garand last night.

You can read about it at The High Road

Ban All Knives

Lots of folks have made the point of how foolish it is to ban guns when other items - such as baseball bats, knives, and pork chops - can be just as lethal. In fact, earlier today I asked "when are they going to ban knives?"

Remind me never to do that again, cause sure as the sun rises in the east, the crazy liberals in England are blaming - and proposing to ban - more inanimate items. This time, you guessed it, they are calling for a ban on knives.
A team from West Middlesex University Hospital said violent crime is on the increase - and kitchen knives are used in as many as half of all stabbings.

They argued many assaults are committed impulsively, prompted by alcohol and drugs, and a kitchen knife often makes an all too available weapon.

The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all.

Yep, ask an ye shall receive.

A special thanks go out to my cousin on Long Island for stumbling on this latest bout of foolishness

Thursday, May 26, 2005

Knife Crime in Gun Free Maryland

Random violence, a multiple stabbing attack at a suburban mall (in one of the most liberal enclaves in America) and an alert citizen pulling out his gun to save the day.

Luckily he was a cop though, cause this happened in Maryland where the populace is disarmed.

The incident began about 6:55 p.m. at Westfield Shoppingtown Montgomery -- the shopping center on Democracy Boulevard formerly known as Montgomery Mall -- when a woman attacked a 24-year-old shopper in the customer service area on the store's third floor. The shopper was stabbed in the abdomen and upper back, police said, and suffered defensive wounds on both arms.
I'm just wondering when they are going to ban knives, cause they certainly aren't going to allow guns anytime soon.

Real Estate Fall Out

There are a ton of problems in the DC area with real estate problems - run away property taxes the most annoying. But at a more fundamental level, the liberal cooks who run the region have looked to San Francisco as a model for land use planning and created a spectacular real estate market that has resulted in an unprecedented number of interest only loans (arms, balloons, etc.)

Thomas Sowell is examining the likely fallout of the bubbles inevitable crash in the Wall Street Journal.

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

BAG Day Update

Just (like 2 minutes ago) got an email from the CMP saying my BAG Day Garand will be shipped priority overnight.

Looks like I'll have a Bag Day toy tomorrow. Perhaps someone was reading my blog???

Asshole Update

If you go to this web page and do a search of the publisher's name you can find his and his wifes social security numbers as well as information on his mortgage, ex wife, and son. They are all available for free in the public records the court house publishes on the internet.

Finding info on the managing editors seems more difficult, there's stuff there, but not as much. I assume they've lived in the area for less time.

Hero of the Week

Yesterday we looked at the Asshole(s) of the Week, the publisher and managing editor of a small Florida newspaper who decided to publish the names, addresses, and phone numbers of Florida Concealed Handgun Permit holders online without receiving permission from those individuals. This action not only put the CHP holders at risk for home burglary (since they all have valuable firearms at home) but it also put many at risk of personal harm since a number have recieved the CHP as a result of an abusive ex-spouse or because they were the victims of a sexual assault. Thank god Florida now allows you to protect yourself and family no questions asked.

In marked contrast to those assholes, The Washington Post profiles Betty Ostergren, the so called Virginia Watchdog, today.

Ms. Ostergren is spearheading an effective citizens campaign against the rampant disclosure of personal information online by government agencies. As part of her crusade, she has revealed the social security numbers of Tom Delay, CIA Director Porter J. Goss, former secretary of state Colin L. Powell, and Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

Sadly, but not surprisingly, the Post doesn't provide her web address. Here's a link to The Virginia Watchdog. Enjoy!

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Asshole of the week

This asshole is the publisher of the Northwest Florida Daily News.
Tom Conner
792 Gary Player Ln

The other day they decided to publish the names and adresses of all of Florida's Concealed Carry Permit Holders. In the interest of fairplay, I've decided to publish his home address and phone number too.

More info in the comments. I was contemplating putting lots of info up here, but thought the better route to go - especially in light of my Hero of the Week post - would be to send everyone to the web page were they can find it on their own. I guess I am just a better guy.

Dildo Shuts Down Florida

A big 'ol dildo shut down Interstate 75 in Florida today and officials are trying to determine if it was designed to serve "medical or recreational needs."

Seriously, isn't it pretty obvious?

Those Nice DC Residents

Saw this on Craig's list.
Solo female cyclist riding south towards trailhead (after mile marker 10.0, approx. 200 yds from the Washington Canoe Club on Water St.), physically assaulted by male pedestrian (black male, approx. 30 y.o., 5'9"-5"10, 150-160 lbs.) who walked onto path from right. Cyclist swerved left to avoid pedestrian but he jumped towards her, hit and punched her and stole the bicycle.

If she were carrying a gun, she wouldn't have been at such a disadvantage. And no, this didn't happen in a dangerous part of DC but rather in what may be the safest and most orderly few blocks of an otherwise lawless city.

Light Blogging

Its another busy week and so another week of light blogging (that usually means extra long blog posts though). Don't expect much more today as I will be on the Hill doing God's work (no, I don't work the abortion issue - but I am trying to ensure we can keep out lights on).

Till then . . .

General Motors

Imagine it this way: The year is 1870 and you march into the velvet and mahogany office of Commodore Vanderbilt, sole owner of the New York Central Railroad and one of the most powerful entrepreneurs in Christendom. Your message is simple: You have investigated the long-term potential of the railroads to handle America's transportation needs and can sum up your conclusions with a brief statement, "Commodore, you're in trouble." He would then have you thrown into the street.
Car and Driver Editor Brock Yates discusses General Motors in the Wall Street Journal today. It seems he predicted their problems 40 years ago in the pages of Car and Driver.

Here are my suggestions.

First, they need to get out of Michigan. As we all know, Detroit is a filthy corrupt dump. Flint, Michigan isn't much better - and the lack of cultural diversity (well, except for all the muslims) and any arts culture is really whats driving their downfalls. Sure, they can build cars whereever, but the auto designers and corporate executives need to be headquartered on one of the coasts where people don't drive GM cars but instead opt for more stylish and cutting edge European and Japanese (or dare I even say Korean) imports. It would do wonders for them to get out of the staid mid west.

The second suggestion is really Kim Du Toits. Bring back the station wagon. Especially the big ass family truckster kind.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Fairfax's Finest

Jeff has the story of a teacher who accidently fired a gun during class. Turns out the guy was showing his middle school students how to load a black powder rifle and it went off (he forgot there was a round in it). Jeff calls him a dummy, but I think he taught a valuable lesson and should be complimented for following the first rule of gun safety - muzzle control.

He certainly showed more sense than Fairfax County, Virginia's finest this weekend.

You see, it was McLean Day here in McLean, Virginia - a fun carnival type day filled with politicians, rides, flea market (albeit of the very expensive kind), hay rides, and a table exhibiting all the police departments cool tools. They had riot shields you could hold, helmets, motocycles, off road motocycles, police cars, mountain bikes, riot shotguns, and even a couple of MP5s the citizens could hoist and check out.

Of course, the MP5 being easily concealed and highly valuable, there were a couple of armed SWAT team members standing watch. One of them, a mid 40s woman named (if i remember correctly, Linda) was talking to a little 10 year old girl and her mother about the dangers of MS-13 and how evil concealed guns were. The entire time she was doing this she had her Sig strapped to a tactical thigh holster - it had a magazine in it and I assume it was loaded - and at one point she put her foot up on the picnic tables bench so that her thigh was parallel with the ground, pointing muzzle of the Sig directly in the girls face, about 6 inches away.

Not that guns go off accidently, but it was interesting to observe this SWAT team member so blatantly violate the basic rules of gun safety and put this little girls life in such danger. But, she was more interested in lecturing on the evils of concealed weapons to actually care about the danger she placed average citizens in from her very dangerous gun handling habits. (I could also blog about the idiot New Yorker - based on accent - who was trying to convince the cops and all around - that .50 caliber rifles were cannons that needed to be banned because its not fair that the SWAT team face that much firepower "on the street" and that its only a matter of time before "MS-13 starts packing them and taking down cops from miles away with them." He also threw in the "no reason for anyone to have one" argument. I, of course, pointed out that no one was concealing a 30 pound four foot long bolt action rifle that costs $5000, that a .50 caliber ban would also outlaw muzzleloading hunting rifles, and that target shooting is an acceptable reason to have one (not that I need one). The idiot - and his cop buddy - just looked at me like I was crazy. Maybe I'll blog about this in more detail tomorrow.)

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Revenge Of The Sith

Star Wars
Revenge of the Sith

Saw it tonight at the Uptown Theater in Cleveland Park.


It was simply awesome.

My wife thought it was the best Star Wars movie, period.

I don't think it was that good - nothing will top Star Wars itself, but I do think it was as good as any of the sequels - better than Return of the Jedi and as good as the Empire Strikes Back - which also had a dark theme, though not as dark as this one.

As for the usual naysayers, I think they need to get a life. When you see a movie like this you need to put on your 12 year old boy hat and try to see it through their eyes. If you do, you will see why it is so great. Indeed, I thought it also stood up under my more sophisticated 33 year old hat too, but its the 12 year old in me that it really brought out.

Of course, it also helps to go see it in a theater that is deserving of the movie, which the Uptown surely is. If your theater has audio problems, you ought to go see it again elsewhere before using your highly influential web page to defame an otherwise great summer movie. One of the all time great ones, actually, and I'd recommend everyone see it again. I know I will be going again this week, there were a few lines we missed - the thunderous applause was so loud at parts - none more dramatic than the final words of Padmé as she bestows Luke and Leia on Obi Wan.

Goodbye Mr Okrent, You'll Be Missed

I didn't give Krugman, Dowd or Safire the chance to respond before writing the last two paragraphs. I decided to impersonate an opinion columnist.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Big Fish

Mr. Completely has been fish blogging.

Pretty cool idea. Here in D.C., Allen Sklar just caught a record breaking 52 pound stripped bass while surf casting. Pretty damn impressive achievement and thats one heck of a big fish.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Bag Day Backorders


It sounds like BAG Day may have been a huge success.

I just got off the phone with the CMP and they are telling me my BAG Day purchase is backordered and will take up to another six weeks to send out. The sales rep said they had a whole bunch of orders come in that they were trying to fill.


Somehow I missed this letter until today. Its brilliant.

Writer rails against ANWR drilling yet uses more petroleum than most

Karen Jettmar claims opening the ANWR coastal plain is merely "a pathetic scramble to another oil fix for a nation addicted to gluttony." She should look in her mirror ("Arctic refuge is far too precious to destroy for sake of oil gluttony," April 2).

Ms. Jettmar is a full participant in "oil gluttony." She drives cars, rides in airplanes, lives in a petroleum-heated home and collects her Permanent Fund dividend check.

Ms. Jettmar's company, Equinox Wilderness Expeditions, offers ANWR tours for the well-heeled (bring $4,000). Her ANWR tour involves a jet to Fairbanks, a plane to Arctic Village and a plane to the Hulahula River. Wearing Gore-tex and fleece (made from oil), clients enter rafts (oil) and float down the river, using tents and sleeping bags (oil) and camp stoves (more oil). At the end of the journey, a plane takes folks to Kaktovik and on to Fairbanks.

Start to finish, each trip requires huge volumes of petroleum per client. No item of equipment or food is free of the "taint" of oil in its production, processing and transportation.

People can take principled positions on the ANWR coastal plain. But it is the height of hypocrisy for Ms. Jettmar to impugn the American lifestyle when she lives that very same lifestyle and uses more petroleum than most through her business operations.

Marc Bond

If you ever make it to D.C. Mr. Bond, drinks are on me.

Is He Stoned Or Just Stupid

Say Uncle linked to this story earlier - to highlight Carolyn McCarthy's failure to have all guns banned.

I, of course, am more fascinated by this rocket scientist
Democrats have been skittish on gun control out of an unfounded concern that it was a loser for them, said Robert Zimmerman, a member of the Democratic National Committee from Great Neck.

Unfounded??? Geeze, what reality is he living in. I guess the last, oh 10 years of electoral failure because of the gun issue really isn't unfounded. No, as a Republican I he is right. The world would be better if all the Democrats really embraced the "If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban, picking up every one of them, Mr. and Mrs. America, turn them all in, I would have done it" mentality of Dianne Feinstein.


One of my fondest memories of childhood was going to MorMor's home and feasting on Swedish Pancakes - or as we called them, Plattar. While its nice that the International House of Pancakes realizes that the Plattar from Sweden are a style all its own, for most Americans who have only been exposed through the lame IHOP version, the true wonder of these blankets of air remain elusive.

Sadly, MorMor never gave me her recipe. However, she did share it with my mother and aunt - and while she complained for years that they were doing it wrong - the basis of her complaint laid more in the choice of pan (teflon coated as opposed to cast iron skillet) than the actual recipe for the batter.


1 cup of flour
2 tablespoons sugar
3 eggs
3 cups milk

1. Sift the flour and sugar together.
2. Using a wire whish, beat the eggs until light and fluffy.
3. Add ingredients to eggs, alternating between milk and flour/sugar.
4. Continue to beat until nice and fluffy.
5. Let stand for 1-2 hours (you don't have to, but they turn out better this way)
6. Preheat either a cast iron skillet or a "plattpan" (A swedish Plattar pan with about 8 molds for plattar built into it) until a drop of water sizzles (or butter quickly melts but doesn't burn).
7. Grease skillet lightly with butter.
8. Pour (it should be very very runny - almost like water) Plattar batter onto pan and let it cook for 1-2 minutes (until it can be turned over without ripping and the underside is a light tan in color (but not burnt).

Repeat until all batter is finished, storing Plattar in a warm 200 degree F. oven.

Go to Ikea and buy lots of lingonberries. Scoop them out of the jar and serve on the side - or get real Maple Syrup from Vermont or New Hampshire or Maine (just no the fake Aunt Jemima stuff) and sit back and enjoy the day.

Mmmm Mmmm Mmmm

Thursday, May 19, 2005

DC, The Commuting Shithole

This one's certain to make Steve smile.

So, imagine one day you decide to take the train into work or school. You used to do it, but then got a car and drove the car for three years. You would have taken your car again today, but for some reason - perhaps you have to be there extra early for a salary review with your boss and can't risk a traffic tie up - for some reason you decide to take the train.

How would you go about this? Perhaps you would drive to the station and buy a ticket and then get on the train. Surely, thats the proper way to do, don't ya think?? Go to the station, buy a ticket, get on train. Sounds reasonable, doesn't it? Heck, that was even the procedure the last time you rode the train.

Well, as I am sure you can guess, there is always a hitch with commuting in DC. In this case - about VRA (The Virginia Rail Express - the train system set up for those people who live outside of the METRO system) - turns out that after you get to the station and spend your $8 on a ticket, your not allowed to board the train. Nope, instead your suppose to stop and read the small print on the ticket (or perhaps read the filth covered signs along the walls) that point out you now need to find another machine and validate the ticket. Yep, buying the ticket isn't enough, you need to validate it.

And what happens if your don't?

Well, then be prepared to go to court and pay a huge fucking ($150) fine.

Folks, I simply can't believe it. James F has the rest of the story.

Another Light Blogging Notice

But, this time I mean it.

I just have too much work to do, and not enough time to do it.

Plus, my allergies are raging. Check out the folks on my blogroll instead.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Newsweek, George Galloway and The Misplaced Allegiences of the Post

Two topics have been in the news recently that lots of people are talking about.

First, and perhaps foremost in the blogsphere is the staff of Newsweek who never cease at the opportunity to attack our military. Except, it turns out that this time they are wrong and lots of people died as a mistake.

A lot of people think its a crime. I don't know about that, but I do know Newsweek should face some penalty more serious than simply the blogsphere's rantings.

Ya know, in a speech to the American Enterprise Institute earlier this year renowned author Michael Crichton was discussing what he thought might turnout to be a pivotal event of our lifetime - especially in the context of science and government - which I think might apply equally to the Newsweek example: product liability for those who supply information.
There is third method for vetting data that is on the horizon. It's not here yet, but I am convinced it is coming. I'm talking about product liability for information.

We live in an information society. Nearly one American in three is a knowledge worker. More people are knowledge workers in this society than are engaged in manufacturing. By and large, what these knowledge workers do is generate information. And our society is totally dependent on the integrity of information. Yet we still do not define information as a product. And as a result it has evaded the Quality Revolution that has transformed other industries.

But product liability is already enforced for maps and charts, and will soon be applied to other information products as well. It's absolutely essential for the future.

It will be interesting to see if the Newsweek case is indeed the test case for his theory. Others seem to think Newsweek is at risk of legal action. While I don't know if they have a "legal duty" to provide accurate information (ya know, they might get off with the Ran Ratheresque "Fake But Accurate" defense) the other elements of a negligence suit seem to be in place.

Of course, not everyone thinks the criticism of Newsweek is fair. Howard Kurtz, the Washington Post media critic came to Newsweeks defense yesterday (well, at least defended them against some of the blogsphere's insights)
But the blogosphere has been denouncing Newsweek for far worse than making a terrible mistake. According to some online critics, Newsweek (owned by The Washington Post Co.) was on a crusade to make the military and the U.S. government look bad. In this view, the magazine gave free rein to its anti-war sentiments by denigrating the military and assuming the absolute worst

Well, that may or may not be the case. I am certainly of the opinion the Post is pretty clearly focused in its mission against the military and the U.S. Government (well, at least the Bush Administration). Which brings up the second topic I want to talk about today, George Galloway.

Galloway, of course, is the MP who decided to sell his country, his allies, the UN, and the people of Iraq down the river in exchange for some of Saddam's riches.

Glenn's been all over it and even had a great post he linked to from The Scotsman.
GEORGE Galloway yesterday failed in his attempt to convince a sceptical US Senate investigative committee that he had not profited from oil dealings with Iraq under the UN’s controversial oil-for-food programme.

Despite a typically barnstorming performance full of bluster and rhetorical flourishes, the former Glasgow Kelvin MP was pinned down by persistent questioning over his business relationship with Fawaz Zureikat, the chairman of the Mariam Appeal - set up to assist a four-year-old Iraqi girl suffering from leukaemia.

And it was a Democrat senator, Carl Levin, rather than the Republican committee chairman, Norm Coleman, who gave him the hardest time as Mr Galloway sought to turn the tables on his inquisitors, leaving him no closer to clearing his name than when he took his seat in front of the sub-committee of the Senate’s homeland security and government affairs committee in Washington.

Time and again, Mr Levin questioned him, requesting wearily that he deliver a straight answer to a straight question. But Mr Galloway could, or would not.

That is how they are reporting Mr. Galloway's performance back at home. Which, of course, brings me back to my earlier comment on the Washington Post's seeming ability to spin everything as anti Bush and anti Republican as possible. Take for instance, today's story in the Washington Post Express - the free copy of the Post that is distributed to all of D.C.'s commuters and is probably read more closely than any other publication in D.C. (what else are you gonna do on Metro) Its short, so I’ll reprint it in its entirety here (any mistakes in my transcribing it are my fault, but the blame rests with the Post who refuse to make the Express available in a . form I can cut and paste.)

Senators Rebuked On Iraq

British MP denies kickback charges, lashes out over war

Washington – British lawmaker George Galloway scolded U.S. Senators Tuesday, denying a panels accusations that that he profited from the U.N. oil for food program and accusing them of unfairly tarnishing his name.

The panel’s chairman, Sen. Norm Coleman, questioned Galloway’s honesty and told reporters, “If in fact he lied to this committee, there will have to be consequences.”

Galloway’s appearance was an odd spectacle on Capitol Hill: a legislator from a friendly nation, voluntarily testifying under oath, without immunity, before a hostile congressional panel with little pretense of diplomatic niceties.

“Now, I know that standards have slipped over the last few years in Washington, but for a lawyer, your remarkably cavalier with any idea of justice,” Galloway told Coleman, chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs investigation subcommittee.

He also accused Coleman of maligning his name before giving him a chance to defend himself and of using the oil-for-food probe to hide the failures of U.S. policies in Iraq.

The panel is one of several congressional committees investigating allegations that Saddam Hussein manipulated the $64 billion oil-for-food program to get kickbacks and build international opposition to U.N. sanctions against Iraq.

Now, I ask you, after comparing the two realities – that of the Post and that of the Scotsman, is it really so ludicrous to believe Newsweek and its parent Washington Post are "on a crusade to make the military and the U.S. government look bad"?

Commie Mommies

I hate them.

I think it ought to be open season on them.

And, before tonight, I had never read Mark Steyn's brilliant analysis of them.
The Million Mom March was conceived last August in a gay resort community by a Hillary Clinton donor who's never organized anything larger than a Democratic senator's office
.Ouch! Read the whole thing.

One Stop Shots

The other day I put up a post about how the military finally realizes it needs to drop the poodleshooter and that it is now looking at automatic shotguns. Part of the post, of course, was singing the praises of the M14 and the much respected (at least by those on the receiving end) 7.62x51 (.308 Winchester).

At the time, I had hopped to post a passage from Black Hawk Down which I thought summed up the situation in particularly graphic detail, but alas, my copy of the book was downstairs - and it was late and I was upstairs.

Nevertheless Gullyborg made this comment.
I am going to go out on a limb here and say that since .223 has near 100% stopping power according to every study on the subject, it works just fine. It's light; it's cheap; it's already a mass-produced standard. There is no reason to replace it.

Now, I don't know who Gullyborg is, outside of his excellent Carnival Postings, and I have admittedly never been in a situation where I needed to shoot either gun (or any gun) at someone, however even those people I know in the Armed forces who are fans of the poodleshooter admit that its failure to take people down quickly is a major flaw. I commented to this effect, as well as referenced the passage in Black Hawk Down, but again did not have the book handy.

Well, now that I am home, I've pulled it out and reread the passage. It, and the entire book, are great and well worth reading again.

This is near the end of Chapter 3 of "The Alamo" section of the book.

Down on one knee, Howe swore bitterly as he fired. Everything about the situation was pissing him off, the god-damn Somalis, his leaders, the idiot Rangers . . . even his ammunition. He drew a bead on three Somalis who were running across the street two blocks to the north, taking a progressive lead on them the way he had learned through countless hours of training, squaring them in his sights and then aiming several feet in front of them. He would squeeze two or three rounds, rapidly increasing his lead with each shot. He was an expert marksman, and thought he had hit them, but he couldn't tell for sure because they kept running until they crossed the street and were out of view. it bugged him. His weapon was the most sophisticated infantry rifle in the world, a customized CAR-15, and he was shooting the army's new 5.56-mm green-tip round. The green tip had a tungsten carbide penetrator at the tip, and would punch holes in metal, but that every penetrating power meant his rounds were passing right through his targets. When the Sammies were close enough he could see when he hit them. Their shirts would lift up at the point of impact, as if someone had pinched and plucked up the fabric. But with the green tip round it was like sticking somebody with an ice pick. The bullet made a small, clean hole, and unless it happened to hit the heart of spine, it wasn't enough tot stop a man in his tracks. Howe felt like he had to hit a guy five or six times just to get his attention. They used to kid Randy Shughart because he shunned the modern rifle and ammunition and carried a Vietnam era M-14, which shot a 7.62-mm round without the penetrating qualities of the new green tip. It occurred to Howe as he saw those Sammies keep on running that Randy was the smartest soldier in the unit. His rifle may have been heavier and comparatively awkward and delivered a mean recoil, but it damn sure knocked a man down with one bullet, and in combat, one shot was often all you got. You shoot a guy, you want to see him go down; you don't want to be guessing for the next five hours whether you hit him, or whether he's still waiting for you in the weeds.


This is just a little reminder to folks that this weeks Carnival of Cordite is going to be hosted by the inimitable Les Jones.

Hopefully he'll have so much fun that he will decide to resume the weekly Thursday Gun Links postings.

For what its worth, I'll be hosting the Carnival the following week (memorial day weekend). With a little luck, I might even get a chance to do a little shooting with Les that week, as I head back to the Chattanooga area for some peace, relaxation, BBQ, and good time gun fun.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Postal Match Time

With the weather suddenly seeming very summer like, the time couldn't be more perfect to seek out a fun filled action packed postal match to compete in.

While most of my readers are no doubt familiar with the Neanderpundit's matches, I think I have found one that might be even more fun, and certainly acceptable to Mr. DuToit. If you have time, and an available outdoor range, I highly recommend you consider shooting in Mr. Completely's Postal Match.

The Constitution

Not that its surprising or anything, but it turns out that the police in Illinois actually oppose the constitution.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Light Postings

Sorry for the light postings today, I've just been too busy doing actual work. I was also working at home last night, finishing a memo at 2:00 am this morning, which meant that I couldn't put many new posts up for today.

My apologize.

One of the things my wife had me working on yesterday was planning for our vacation. Looks like I am heading back to the King and Prince on gorgeous Saint Simons Island again.

The best part, of course, is that the King and Prince has booked the "Ocean View" unit we've stayed in the last 5 years for the week we wanted and to make up for it, they've offered to put us in an "Ocean Front" unit for the same price.

That's customer service, and I can't stress enough how nice it is to return every year and the staff knows our names and our likes.

I'll also be doing a air bit of Kayaking there too.

Quote of the Day

If I could get paid for sitting outside and eating cake, I'd be made.

Heavy Metal Happy Hour, redux

A couple of weeks ago I linked to what may be the craziest greatest most ironically funny thing I've listened to or seen in some time.

Well, yesterday at 4:20 (fitting, heh) Bugs Money posted the following comment:
go to the website see the movie.

I can't agree more. I just watched it again and you really need to do yourself a favor and listen to the Master of Metal and watch the smooth moves of Mr. Hate, De Monique, & The Empress all over again.

PETA Approved

Thinking about PETA???

How about a round of Kitten Cannon???

Try to top this score?

Hat tip to the Bitchy Girls

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Power Equals Force

So it sounds like the military is finally discovering what so many have known for so long, the poodleshooter ain't a high powered firearm.
American troops are testing a 12 gauge automatic shotgun in Iraq. The Auto Assault 12 (AA12) has a rate of fire of 300 rounds per minute and uses either an 8-round box magazine or a 20 round drum magazine. Recoil on the system has been reduced to that of a light rifle, due to a sophisticated recoil system. The low rate of fire makes it possible to easily fire bursts of one, two, or three shots and is capable of using and mixing all types of 12 gauge ammunition, from shot to solid slugs, as well as non-lethal rounds. Allegedly, Iraqi insurgents have little respect for the M4 rifle and the 5.56mm round, but they fear shotguns.

New guns and all are pretty cool, but it seems to me we could remedy this problem by resorting back to the wonderful M1/M14 in the manly 7.62x51 mm NATO (.308 Winchester). No one on the receiving end has ever had "little respect" for the .308.

Of course, if they are in close quarters combat and need something a bit shorter, Springfield also makes that sweet little SOCOM


Longtime reader MrCompletely has finally gotten around to throwing up a blog. Check him out!!

Not too much posted yet, but its all guns all the time, and he has a smoking picture of pin top shooting.

Carnival of Cordite

Resistance is futile indeed. The 13th Carnival of Cordite is up (it came out on the Friday the 13th, heh) and guess who wins blogger of the week awards?

Heh Heh

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Taste of the South

See you there tonight!

Bad Blogger Good Musician

BillyCorgan is blogging. Except, he just doesn't get it. Each post is followed by this:

Copyright 2005 Billy Corgan. All Rights Reserved. Please do not do reproduce or publish in hard or electronic form without written authorization.



I'm always looking for new ways to tick off liberals. One of the best, of course, is the purchase of a new firearm. Bascially, you can't beat that.

However, there does come a time when maybe the purchase of a new gun isn't practical. Say you've run out of space in the safe, you can't make up your mind which one to choose, or you simply can't afford to buy another one this month.

Well, in those cases, you can always purchase some firearms accessories. Things like new grips, new mags, more ammo, shirts, or even a carrying case.

Today, I am gonna recommend one case thats sure to send the liberals in a frenzy. Sure its all kind of ghetto, but nothing says F-You Mother F'er, I Mean Business quite like a Coffin Case.

Just think how much cooler Vincent and Jules would be with one of those before pouting of this.
The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he, who in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee.

They also have some bad ass grips too.

Condi Rice

I've talked in the past about how great Condi is, how hot Condi is, and how Condi needs to run now.

Well, just in time for 2008 let me introduce you to the Condipundit.

What a brilliant idea for a blog. That'll be going up in the roll as soon as the next update is in.

Friday, May 13, 2005

Carnival of the Recipes

The Carnival of the Recipes is up over at Boudicca's Voice.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Real ID

Jefferson said a "A little rebellion every now and then is a good thing."

Well, sometimes I wonder when we will know if its the time. I mean, Real ID just passed the bitterly divided Senate 100-0 and is certain to receive the president's signature. A pox on all of them.

Its also worth pointing out another cliched quote, "Those Who Forget History Are Doomed to Repeat It"

Does this thought frighten you?? It does me. The ever thoughtful Jacqueline Mackie Paisley Passey has more, much more.

Outdated second amendment my ass.

Chelsea Smiles

The other day I linked to the web page for a band who's guitarist I once knew when I was a kid.

Well, just thought I would let you know that the Chelsea Smiles are now on Capitol Records and getting ready to depart on a nationwide tour through the middle of July. Their not coming to DC (big mistake, fellas. TONS of cute girls here in the summer) but seem to be hitting most everywhere else.

Check 'em out if you can and say hi for me.

.50 Calibers

You might have heard all the gun fearing wussy's ot there screaming their heads off about the dreaded-.50-caliber-airplane-downing-sniper-assault-weaponfavored yet never used by terrorists.

I'd sure like to get one, though I think I might pick up one of these evil .50 calibers first.

An antique Winchester Model 1886 in the wonderful 50-110 express. Its from 1892 and only $2850 at Joe Salters.

Condi on King

Everyone's talking about Condi's defense of the second amendment on Larry King live the other night. Heck, even Drudge mentioned it.

However, everyone seemed to link to the same Yahoo article. I thought it might be worthwhile to throw the actual transcript up, ya know.

Only problem is, I can't see where she discussed it in this interview. Perhaps one of my readers can point it out.

UPDATE Joe Zwers has sent me a complete transcript, taken from the State Department's web page. Dontcha just love the blogsphere!!

Here's the relevant part of the discussion.

MR. KING: Does public opinion affect you?

SECRETARY RICE: The President is determined to lead from values and from principle. He was elected by the American people not to read the polls on any given day, but to lead in the way that American presidents have led when they are at their best, and that is to speak out for America's role in the spread of democratic values and freedom and liberty understanding that when the world is freer we are more secure and when the world is less free we are more vulnerable. When you listen and we talk about the real threats out there today, you talk about a North Korea. Why do we worry so much about North Korea, this closed, non-transparent society with potentially a nuclear weapon?

When you look at the Middle East, the absence of democracy there that has led people to economies that are -- where 22 of them have a gross domestic product less than that of Spain and where anger and hatred is being fueled, so that we experience something like September 11th. If you contrast that with Europe now, where 60 years ago nobody would have said that Europe was going to peaceful, but now where you have democracies throughout Europe, do we fear somehow war in Europe any longer? No. Do we fear Europe attacking us or using military force? No.

There is a clear link between the spread of democracy and our own security. And so that's what we have to keep our eyes on. And I know it's hard and I know that this is a generational struggle. But Americans have never gotten tired and quit early. That's not who we are. It took us a long time to get to a Europe in which the Soviet Union collapsed peacefully, in which we now can go and celebrate democracy in Georgia or Latvia. But the sacrifice was worth it because our people are much more secure and much freer.

MR. KING: What do you make, Madame Secretary, of violence as an answer? Well, we were born in violence, right? We had a --


MR. KING: That fellow: "When in the course of human events."


MR. KING: We have a Second Amendment. People can own guns.


MR. KING: By the way, what do you think about gun control?

SECRETARY RICE: Well, Larry, I come out of a -- my own personal experiences in which in Birmingham, Alabama, my father and his friends defended our community in 1962 and 1963 against white nightriders by going to the head of the community, the head of the cul-de-sac, and sitting there armed. And so I'm very concerned about any abridgement of the Second Amendment. I'll tell you that I know that if Bull Connor had had lists of registered weapons, I don't think my father and his friends would have been sitting at the head of the community defending the community.

MR. KING: So you would not change the Second Amendment? You would not --

SECRETARY RICE: I also don't think we get to pick and choose in the Constitution. The Second Amendment is as important as the First Amendment of the --

MR. KING: But doesn't having the guns, while it's protection, also leads to people killing people?

SECRETARY RICE: Well, obviously, the sources of violence are many and we need to get at the sources of violence. Obviously, I'm very much in favor of things like background checks and, you know, and controlling at gun shows. And there are lots of things we can do. But we have to be very careful when we start abridging rights that our Founding Fathers thought very important. And on this one, I think that they understood that there might be circumstances that people like my father experienced in Birmingham, Alabama, when, in fact, the police weren't going to protect you.

MR. KING: Did you see him take the guns?

SECRETARY RICE: Oh, absolutely. Every night, he and his friends kind of organized a little brigade.

MR. KING: How old were you?

SECRETARY RICE: I was eight -- eight years old.

MR. KING: You remember that?

SECRETARY RICE: I remember it very, very well.

MR. KING: Did you understand it, as an eight-year-old why --

SECRETARY RICE: I understood that something was deeply wrong in Birmingham, Alabama, when I didn't have a white classmate until we moved to Denver, Colorado. I knew that these were separate societies. Our parents -- I grew up in a very nice, sheltered little middle-class community in Birmingham. My mother was a schoolteacher. My father was a minister and a high school guidance counselor. And I'm still friends with a lot of the kids from that community. And we recognize that we had very special circumstances.

Our parents told us, "All right, it may be that you can't have a hamburger a the Woolworth's lunch counter, and it may be that you can't go to this amusement park, Kiddieland, but don't worry, you can do anything you want. Your horizons should be limitless in America."

MR. KING: Did you believe that?

SECRETARY RICE: And we believed it.

MR. KING: Or as Dick Gregory once said, "Why would you want to eat a hamburger at the Woolworth counter?" (Laughter.) We'll be right back with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Don't go away.

(Commercial break.)

WOW! All I can say is that I am more convinced than ever that Paul L. Whiteley, Sr., of Louisville, Ky and all his ilk are really nothing but reprehensible bigoted racists. Outdated my ass.

INSTALANCHE: Hello Instapundit readers. I truly am not worthy of yet another Instalanche (but yet, I still haven't managed a spot on the elusive instablogroll). Anyway, welcome to the Countertop Chronicles. Feel free to look around, and if your hungry, check out my submission for this weeks Carnival of the Recipies. Oh, and please forgive my horrible spelling. We'll just chalk that up to the lack of a copy editor around here. At work, I am lucky to be graced by one of the better copy editors.

More Avgolemono Recipies

A couple of weeks ago, I posted a recipie for Avgolemono Soup and promised to show you how to use it as a delicious base for more tasty greek treats.

Well, here you go


1 Leg of Lamb.
2 Lemons
Avgolemono Soup

Clean it and cut it into four or five pieces. Boil it in salt and water and remove the foam. When it is well done, drain the broth (which itself makes a nice stock for starting some Avgolemono Soup), remove the excess leftover fat, and place in a platter. Squeeze the juice of 2 lemons over the lamb and then cover with the Avgolemono Soup.

Serve hot. Delicious!!

Grape Leaves
1 jar preserved grape leaves, drained
1/2 cup Basmati rice
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound lean ground lamb
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled finely or grated
3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
2 tablespoons finely chopped mint
1 teaspoon sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1 lemon sliced, for garnish
Mint leaves, for garnish

Make Avgolemono Soup,
reduce over light/medium heat until at a gravy like consistency.

Preparing the leaves - Separate the grape leaves, place in a large bowl and soak in boiling water (do not boil them in the water, pour the water over them) for 20 minutes. Then drain and rinse and snip off the stems (reserving stems) and place on a towel to dry.

Cooking the filing - In saucepan, boil 2 cups of salted water and stir in the rice. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook about 20 minutes until water is absorbed.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in skillet, add the onion and saute 3-5 minutes until soft. Add the garlic and saute another minute until aromas are released. Add the lamb and cook about 15 minutes until well browned, breaking it apart with a fork while cooking. Add the oregano, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the feta and remove from the heat. Stir in the rice, parsley and mint.

Stuffing the leaves - Put one leaf on a flat surface, vein side up, shiny side down. Place a rounded teaspoon of filling in the center of the leaf, near the stem edge. Fold the stem end over the filling, then fold both sides toward the middle, and form into a roll. Squeeze lightly in the palm of your hand to secure the roll. Repeat process with remaining leaves and filling.

Baking the stuffed leaves - Line the bottom of a 3 quart heavy saucepan with the leftover stems, trimmings and any leftover or torn grape leaves, and arrange bundles seam sides down, packing them close together in layers.

Mix 1/4 cup olive oil with 3/4 cup water, sugar, and lemon juice and pour over the stuffed grape leaves. Place a small, heatproof plate on top of the stuffed leaves, cover the pan and simmer over low heat for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until leaves are tender and most of the liquid is absorbed.

Serve warm, garnished with lemon slices and mint leaves with reduced Avgolemono Soup on top.


Welcome Carnival Readers! Please enjoy these fine recipes and feel free to browse the Countertop Chronicles, lots of good stuff here on politics, guns, and popular culture.

Wednesday, May 11, 2005


My image of cowboys has just been shattered. Don't ask how we got on the subject, but someone in my office just mentioned that Cowboys working on the range wear pantyhose - allegedly to prevent chaffing.

I guess it answers the musical question - where have all the cowboys gone? San Francisco.

Bach v. Pataki

Jeff at Alphecca gives his usual treatment to a Yahoo Biz story on the recent Bach v. Pataki decision in the Second Circuit.

There are, of course, a couple of points he misses (not being a lawyer, he may be unaware of them).

First, there is no such case as Presser v. Illinois, 16 U.S. 2252 (1886). I haven't read the Back opinion so I don't know on whom the error falls, but what I presume Yahoo Biz was citing is Presser v. Illinois, 116 U.S. 252 (1886).

Of course, Presser's applicability as well as that of U.S. v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1876) was soundly questioned in Silveira v. Lockyer 312 F.3d 1052 at 1067 (9th Cir. 2002) as occuring
before the Supreme Court held that the Bill of Rights is incorporated by the Foureenth Amendment due process clause.
In fact, the Silveira court - not a friend of gun owners at all - went so far as to even state
One point about which we are in agreement with the Fifth Circuit is that Cruikshank and Presser rest on a principle that is now thoroughly discredited.
Boy, I'd love to see the Supreme Court knock this one out of the park. Unfortunatly, its probably a very good delaying tactic on part of the GFW's on the 2nd, because if the Supreme's were to take the issue up, they likely would limit their review to the error of relying upon Presser. Once reveresed, they would simply send it back down to the Second Circuit and avoid any discussing of the underlying Second Amendment concerns that are really at issue.

Busy Working, Light Blogging

I've got a ton of stuff to do today (much of it with folks from the Americans for Tax Reform) and won't have time to blog much. In the meantime though, Steve has some great thoughts about armed robbery and taxation. Do yourself a favor and read it.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Congrats Are In Order

Mary, wife of Lay Line's Mark, has successfully completed her concelaed carry class.

Congrats to her. And Congrats to him.

Did I mention how good she looks shooting?

BAG Day Update

Well, I recieved word from the CMP yesterday that my BAG Day purchase has been processed. Only problem though, I forgot to send in a copy of my picture ID.


Looks like I am going to cut out of work early tonight to head over to the bank and dive into the Safe Deposit Box. As soon as I send them a copy of my passport, they will finish processing the order. Not too shabby!

Stop The Presses!!!


Who knew??? The world must be coming to an end!!!

Actually, I feel pretty bad for this kid cause his life is essentially fucked up from now on out. Of course, being arrested for smoking pot (and growing a couple of plants) shouldn't be too surprising, since it now seems to be worse than crack . We wouldn't want anyone actually, ya know, finding McDonalds food tempting or anything like that.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Are You Stoned Or Just Stupid

In Calvin Floyd's case, I think both. His is perhaps the dumbest idea I've heard from a liberal in a long time. . . . .and I've heard a bunch.

Welcome News

One of my favorite places to eat down south is the Huddle House. Nothing like a bit of cholesterol to get your morning started right. The only problem was that the local Huddle House was sort of a dump.

Well, after who knows how many different managers, it appears there is a new lady in town, and she is fixing things up big time. Her hard work, and that of the Huddle House's staff have resulted in a Best of the Best award.

Seriously, I simply can't believe this, but I guess Tammy Dooley's been there 4 months and I haven't been down since Christmas so anything is possible, but this seems pretty impossible.

I do look forward to visiting though and getting a steaming cup of Huddle House coffee - the best in the world.

I Knew Someone Had A Brain

Too bad Metro didn't listen to my suggestion 10 years ago. I guess better late than never, and it sure is nice to see them finally do something smart ($$$ wise), but I still wonder, what took METRO 30 years to figure out the demands of advertisers.
Like giant green billboards rolling down train tracks, Metro's first rail cars wrapped completely in an advertisement debuted on the Orange Line yesterday in an effort the transit agency hopes will bring much-needed revenue.

The new look started yesterday in New Carrollton with a spinach green and radish red background to McDonald's bright golden arches on the sliding doors. The ad campaign is scheduled to last three months, but Metro officials are hoping other deep-pocketed corporations will follow.

Coming soon will be television screens inside trains and buses that will broadcast news, sports scores and, of course, commercials. Tunnel ads -- a series of panel drawings that will appear to move like so many flip cards as the train passes -- could be in place as early as the fall. ATMs and banner ads will debut in stations soon.

While I relish the thought of smart and attractive advertising on metro - its a much needed diversion from the usual puke orange seating - the best thing is its a smart and painless way to generate lots of cash.
Local owners of McDonald's restaurants paid $54,000 to put the ad and motto, "I'm Lovin' It," on the trains. Appearing beneath the windows are the phrases "New Fruit & Walnut Salad" and "get a fruit buzz."
Of course, I'd hope they soon charge more than that . . . . and I expect they will be surprised at how much advertisers are willing to pay (and how creative the marketing wizards of Madison Avenue can be).

Now, if only they would do away with the silly no food rule
To some riders, the ad was an ironic reminder of a Metro rule that is vigorously enforced: It is illegal to eat on the train.

Da Dead

Though my patience for hippies is generally pretty low, to say I'm a bit of a dead head is sort of an understatement. Sorry if you don't like em, I think they are the greatest thing since sliced bread.

Anyway, in my opinion, one of the great resources on the web was, an online archive of various Dead recordings available for streaming at your desktop computer. Sadly, it has been less than active over the last few years - with few if any updates and progressivly deteriorating quality. On a lark this afternoon - without my iPod and while trying to finish a memo - I decided to tune in to discovery it had been mostly taken down. Except, Daniel Rapaport, the site owner has decided to put up an even better page deadicate to perhaps the bands fimonth ever, May 1977. Wow!!!

The Bloggin' Life

Les Jones went to BlogNashville and blogged the entire event (how fitting).

He's got Photo's of Nashville; a bit of Bird Blogging; the Friday Night Blogger MeetUp; Hossein Derakshan's BlogNashville Talk; Dave Winer's less than respectful disagreement; A TRUE LIFESAVING STORY; some sexy blog flirting; and his adios note, as well as some great afterhours photos and the John Jay Hooker post.

What is so funny is that here I am in my very corporate-political-job across the street from the White House, as far removed from what was transpiring in Nashville (and with the Rocky Top Bridge generally) as you can be and we spent almost 45 minutes at our weekly staff meeting this morning discussing blogging, bloggers, BlogNashville, and whether we should do a blogging event itself.

WHile the initial idea to have a prominent blogger at our next big meeting appears to not be happening (we've landed someone bigger - at least around this town - we are already thinking of ways to invite the Blogfather and bloggers in general to an event later this fall.

How fun!!!!

There Back

Not that I like running free ads or anything, but those sweet
K31 Carbin Scmidt Rubin's in 7.55 Swiss that Aim Surplus was selling are back again. . . . . .and still only $79.95

Thats got to be the gun deal of the month, fer sure.

Walnut stocks and hand pick will cost another $10.