25 October 2006

"Big Fat Idiot" Ain't the Half of It!

    You absolute horror of a human being.
      Simon Bishop (Greg Kinnear)
      As Good as It Gets

Rush Limbaugh sought new depths to sink to yesterday when he accused Michael J. Fox of faking Parkinson's disease. The Washington Post story by reporter David Montgomery begins this way:

Possibly worse than making fun of someone's disability is saying that it's imaginary. That is not to mock someone's body, but to challenge a person's guts, integrity, sanity.

That showed some pretty impressive restraint. I guess, "Could Limbaugh be any more of an asshole?" wouldn't have made it past the editor.

Update: My hero Keith Olbermann voted Rush Monday's Worst Person in the World.

20 October 2006

Goin' Mobile

And we'll see how it feels
Goin' mobile
Keep me movin'
-Pete Townshend

Okay, I'm trying out blog posting from my PDA phone. Let's see how this works....

19 October 2006

Goodbye, Habeas Corpus

    A government more dangerous to our liberty, than is the enemy it claims to protect us from.
      Keith Olbermann

I have two things for your consideration now that the Military Commissions Act is law:

First, from WBEZ in Chicago, This American Life episode 310: Habeas Schmaebeas. It is a detailed account of how our government has denied Habeas at Guantanamo Bay and the gross injustice that has resulted. To listen, Click Here.

Next Keith Olbermann expresses the outrage we should all feel in this week's Special Comment:

Text Version

Return of The Hunter

    I'm on the hunt, I'm after you.
      Duran Duran

Every season has its familiar little joys we look forward to. Autumn, for me, has leaves, apples, and Halloween. It also marks the return of Orion, The Hunter, to the night sky. I never go out looking for Orion. Still, every year there comes a night when I glance up at the night sky, and there are the three bright stars, all in a row, that comprise his belt.

Like the Ursa Major, the "Big Dipper," Orion is a constellation that dominates the sky. You can't miss it - even in the light polluted skies of central NJ. And no wonder. Orion is home to six of the fifty brightest stars in the sky (our sun included). Two are in the top ten. Rigel is the blue-white star at his left knee. Betelgeuse is the reddish star at his right shoulder. I just read that Betelgeuse is one of the largest stars observed, with a radius roughly the same as that of Jupiter's orbit.

My favorite part of Orion, though, is the Orion Nebula. In clear dark skies, even the naked eye can see that there's something in Orion's sword that isn't a star. With a decent pair of binoculars you can clearly make out the nebula and maybe one or two of the young stars within. View it through a telescope and you're in for a treat. It quickly fills the eyepiece with purple clouds and tiny pinpoints of light from newborn stars. If I were Carl Sagan I'd have a more eloquent description, but for me it's just cool.

Tonight it's cloudy, so you can't see any stars. It's been a week since I spotted Orion. I meant to post this sooner, but I seem to have less blogging time, lately. But the idea stayed with me, so here it is.

12 October 2006

More lies: Bush and so-called Faith-Based Initiatives

    There are... there are... there are extreme elements that use religion to achieve objectives.
      President George W. Bush
    Baby, you ain't kidding.
      Bill (David Carradine) in Kill Bill: Volume 2

Keith Olbermann's open war on Bush is his report Tempting Faith, the new book from David Kuo, second-in-command of the Office of Faith-Based Intiatives. It is a detailed account of how the office is merely a tool to sucker evangelical Christians out of their votes.

I'm scooping Rob S. on this one. Here's the video:

Couldn't even hear the whistle blow

    Lord I'm one, Lord I'm two, Lord I'm three, Lord I'm four,
    Lord I'm 500 miles from my home.
      Hedy West

Sunday morning I began my day 1000 miles from home. It was the last day of our vacation in Florida. Sunday evening we boarded our 6:20 PM flight back to NJ. Sunday night found us safely home and in bed.

By 5 AM Monday morning, I was already up and back in Newark, boarding the 5:20 AM flight to Charlotte, NC. At 9 AM, I was in Greenville, SC. I was 700 miles from home. I made the return trip that same day, arriving home at 9 PM.

By 10 AM Tuesday I'd driven 75 miles to White Plains, NY. The traffic gods smiled on me that evening, and I was home by 7:30 PM.

In three days I travelled 2,550 miles through five different states (not counting the ones I flew over). I went through three international airports. I drove two rental cars, flew two different airlines, and rode on three different planes.

Some observations:

  • I would fly JetBlue over U.S. Air any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
  • The Chevy Cobalt was better than I thought, the PT Cruiser less than I hoped.
  • I should have asked for an economy car. They never have them, so I'd have been upgraded for free.
  • Orlando is a really nice airport. Charlotte is okay. Newark is getting better.

Yesterday, I went to work. It's 21 miles each way, and I don't have to leave the state.