Posted by Critical Matt at 10:29 PM
"After 24 years nestled in a quaint Redford Township neighborhood on Breakfast Drive, Catholic Central High School will move in July to a 60-acre site at Wixom Road and Grand River Avenue in Novi.
The property, which features wooded terrain and 10 acres of wetlands, is valued at $10 million and was donated to the school. The new school includes a chapel, computer and science labs, media resource centers and a counseling center. The school, which can accommodate more than 1,000 students, will provide bus transportation."
Sigh. Only 15 years too late for me.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:10 PM
"Michael Moore never was a �working class boy from Flint, Michigan,� as he pretends. He was born on April 23, 1954, in Davison, Michigan, a lily-white upper-middle class suburb 10 miles east of Flint, where his father Frank assembled AC spark plugs, and his mother was a clerk-secretary for General Motors (GM).
For a few decades following World War II, America�s global power (relative to war-shattered Europe and Japan) and the benefits provided to employees by GM and the United Auto Workers (UAW) union made life pleasant.
Moore�s parents enjoyed ample income, free medical and dental care, four weeks of paid vacation each year, and had two cars in their well-to-do Davison home. Moore�s Irish-American father had spent workday afternoons playing golf. After he retired at age 53 with a full pension, he enjoyed a life of ease, golf and volunteer work at the local Roman Catholic church."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 5:36 PM
"BAGHDAD, Iraq - Iraq (news - web sites)'s interior minister said Monday that insurgents used a handicapped child as one of the suicide bombers who launched attacks on election day.
Falah al-Naqib told reporters in Baghdad that 38 attacks were carried out on polling stations in Iraq on Sunday and that one of the suicide bombings was carried out by a disabled child.
'A handicapped child was used to carry out a suicide attack on a polling site,' al-Naqib said. 'This is an indication of what horrific actions they are carrying out.'"
Disgusting. Click on the link for the whole story.
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:51 PM
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:33 PM
A Slovak man trapped in his car under an avalanche freed himself by drinking 60 bottles of beer and urinating on the snow to melt it.
Rescue teams found Richard Kral drunk and staggering along a mountain path four days after his Audi car was buried in the Slovak Tatra mountains.
He told them that after the avalanche, he had opened his car window and tried to dig his way out.
But as he dug with his hands, he realised the snow would fill his car before he managed to break through.
He had 60 half-litre bottles of beer in his car as he was going on holiday, and after cracking one open to think about the problem he realised he could urinate on the snow to melt it, local media reported.
He said: "I was scooping the snow from above me and packing it down below the window, and then I peed on it to melt it. It was hard and now my kidneys and liver hurt. But I'm glad the beer I took on holiday turned out to be useful and I managed to get out of there."
Parts of Europe have this week been hit by the heaviest snowfalls since 1941, with some places registering more than ten feet of snow in 24 hours.
Posted by Critical Matt at 10:46 PM
The state of Palestinian 'democracy.'
Click on the link.
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:24 PM
Just flipped on the TV and found Godzilla vs. Hedora on the Sci-Fi channel. I loved coming home from grade school and watching these movies. This one happens to be the 'environmentally sensitive' Godzilla who fights a monster that forms out of pollution. What a hoot.
Update: Apparently, it's a marathon today!
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:23 AM
"The government of Iraq announced today that two more close associates of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi have been in custody since mid-January. One of those arrested was described as the head of Zarqawi'd Baghdad operation; he claims to have met with Zarqawi more than forty times over a three month period--suggesing, of course, that he knows where Zarqawi is.
It seems pretty clear that one of two things is happening: either 1) the Iraqi authorities have steadily rolled up Zarqawi's network to the point where they are on the doorstep of catching the master terrorist himself; or 2) rumors that Zarqawi himself was caught several weeks ago are true, and the reason why his closest associates are now being captured is that Zarqawi is squealing on his friends.
Don't be shocked if the Iraqi government makes a blockbuster announcement on the eve of Sunday's election.
UPDATE: Austin Bay has some related observations."
Posted by Critical Matt at 10:45 AM
Is this really torture? An Islamist can't handle being in the presence of a female? They wept in rage at being questioned by a - dramatic pause - girl? Color me unimpressed. Notice in the report that no physical abuse happened. If we cannot make a terrorist uncomfortable how do we interrogate? According to this story, making them watch the Lifetime network would qualify as torture (am I on to something here?).
Posted by Critical Matt at 2:35 PM
According to the suit, Brady signed a contract with GM in July 2003, agreeing to autograph merchandise, make personal appearances on behalf of the company and do ads for a number of Cadillac dealerships in the Boston area.
That contract expired Jan. 1, 2004. Brady alleges that on Jan. 30, 2004, GM asked to use a print ad featuring his name and photograph in connection with that year's Super Bowl.
Brady denied the request twice, according to the suit, but GM twice placed the ad in The Boston Globe anyway. Brady says the ads also were distributed in Texas and elsewhere in Massachusetts after the contract expired.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:12 PM
Jonah Goldberg over at the Corner relays this:
A professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado (what is wrong with that place, by the way?) calls 9/11 victims deserving "little Eichmanns" and says we had it coming.
"As for those in the World Trade Center, well, really, let's get a grip here, shall we? True enough, they were civilians of a sort. But innocent? Gimme a break."
I don't feel the need to comment...
Posted by Critical Matt at 11:15 AM
"You wouldn't know it from reading your morning newspaper, but there is growing evidence that the Zarqawi terrorist ring, the number one threat to security in Iraq, is steadily being rolled up.
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 11:09 AM
This guy should be put against a wall and shot. He parks his car on the tracks to commit suicide, but chickens out and leaves. The train hits it, and derails into another train killing a dozen and injuring hundreds. They can't zap this scumbag quick enough for my liking.
Posted by Critical Matt at 11:07 AM
"The nine-hour temper tantrum by the Senate Democrats yesterday on Condi Rice�s nomination comes on the heels of the Dems peevish grandstanding over certifying the Ohio vote for Election 2004. Meanwhile, on every single position taken by the Bush Administration, the Dems stamp their feet, cross their arms and scream �no!�
Man, it�s bizarre. The modern Democratic Party is just stuck in some kind of Twilight Zone time warp where Robert Byrd and Ted Kennedy are the voices of the party."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:36 PM
The guys at Powerline comment on this story.
""Centrists"?? Mark Dayton? Robert Byrd? Carl Levin? And Tom Harkin?? These are some of the most far-left politicians who have ever served in the United States Senate. At the Post, "centrist" apparently means "someone who isn't any more liberal than we are."
DEACON adds: The only centrist on the list is Evan Bayh. And I suspect that his vote against Dr. Rice is best understood in the context of the possibility he will run for president in 2008. Perhaps we are witnessing Bayh's transformation into an ex-centrist, in the Al Gore tradition."
Posted by Critical Matt at 4:12 PM
I'm taking it easy tonight. I finally went and signed up for a library card. I read so quickly I haven't purchased a hardcover book in ages. It's just not worth spendnig 20 bones and being finished in a day or two. I was buying used paperbacks from a place in Clawson, but I don't get down there very often anymore. The library is a decent option. I just don't like the idea that a book I want may not be available. If I see something I want to read, I want it straight away. I get the feeling that reading a current bestseller is a longshot at the library. I checked the NYT top ten list and every book is checked out, and each branch of the library only carries one copy in my nape of the woods. Combine that with a 3 week (3 weeks!) checkout time, I doubt I'll be reading State of Fear anytime soon.
I've been on a sci-fi kick lately. It's wierd. I loved it as a kid and moved away until recently. I've always loved sci-fi movies, but stopped reading it for some reason. I think having children affected the types of things I like to read. I love the hope that exists in sci-fi. Sure there may be homocidal aliens, or the sun blinks out, but the humans are out there, travelling, discovering, finding a way to save the race. There is always that feeling of hope of what can be.
Well, I seem to be rambling on. Back tomorrow.
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:39 PM
"In response to my post about the plane of suspected illegal alien Chinese in San Antonio forced down by homeland security officials last night, this tip just came in:
The co-owner of the plane, Afzal Hameed, is president of Alpha Tango Flying Services in San Antonio, which trains pilots and mechanics.
Guess who trained at Alpha Tango Flying Services--which, by the way, caters to Saudi Arabian flight students(!!!!):
Among their clients were three Arab flight students investigated by the FBI, including Al Qaeda operative Abdul Hakim Murad , who was arrested in Manila in 1995 and later convicted in New York of plotting to blow up a dozen U.S. airliners over the Pacific, then crash a suicide plane into CIA headquarters.
The FBI has been keeping tabs on Alpha Tango since Sept. 11. So, now, a plane co-owned by Alpha Tango's president, who is incommunicado, has been forced down with a planeful of Chinese illegal aliens in the wake of a terror alert involving Chinese illegal aliens."
Posted by Critical Matt at 11:30 AM
"Another arrest of a key al Qaeda leader has been announced in Iraq:
A top lieutenant of al-Zarqawi's terror group, Sami Mohammed Ali Said al-Jaaf,So Zarqawi's chief weapons manufacturer and director of propaganda are now in custody. And note that the Mad Bomber was arrested nine days ago. The Iraqi authorities (and, of course, the US armed forces) are getting very close, at a minimum, to Zarqawi himself. These reports add considerable credibility to reports that Zarqawi himself has been captured."
also known as Abu Omar al-Kurdi, was arrested during a raid in Baghdad on Jan.
15, a government statement said Monday. Al-Jaaf was responsible for 32 car bombings that killed hundreds of Iraqis and was linked to the August 2003 bombing of U.N. headquarters in Baghdad that killed the top U.N. envoy in Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello, and 21 others, the statement said.
The suspect "confessed to building approximately 75 percent of the car bombs used in attacks in Baghdad since March 2003," Allawi spokesman Thaer al-Naqib said in the statement.
Al-Jaaf was "the most lethal of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's lieutenants" and "claims responsibility for some of the most ruthless attacks on Iraqi police forces and police stations," the statement said.
Two other militants linked to al-Zarqawi's terror group also have been arrested, authorities said a man described as the chief of al-Zarqawi's propaganda operations and one of the group's weapons suppliers.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:51 PM
"State and county safety officials were called to the Fermi II nuclear plant in Monroe early Monday evening to investigate a coolant leak situation.
Michigan, Wayne and Monroe County authorities responded to what they called a "situation" within the plant around 6:00 p.m.
Minutes later, DTE officials confirmed that there were indications that there had been a leak of reactor coolant into the containment area. There were no evacuations at the plant, and there were no signs of any release of radiation.
Stay tuned to Action News for more on this developing story as it becomes available."
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:17 PM
Jimmy Neutron isn't the only one experimenting with nanotechnology.
Click on the link for the story.
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:22 PM
"You won't read this headline anywhere else, but Notre Dame has already won the recruiting war.
Notre Dame picked up two very big recruits recently, but that has done little to quiet the nerves of Notre Dame fans watching highly �ranked� players commit elsewhere. Relax brethren, Notre Dame already landed its biggest recruits in Charlie Weis and his proven experienced staff.
The fact is that recruiting means little if there isn�t a great staff to mold recruits into winners. Both Davie and Willingham worked with exceptionally gifted athletes who were highly ranked at their positions, but their lofty recruiting rankings could not make up for poor player development. Notre Dame started more top 25 consensus players at their positions this year than did USC, Michigan and Tennessee, yet players continually looked out of position and lost. The composite (all services combined) average of Ty Willingham�s sophomore through fifth year classes �averaged� in the top five in the country, yet Notre Dame couldn�t finish in the top thirty on the field. That type of underperformance is unacceptable at any major University."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:50 PM
Jack Fowler From the Corner at NRO has an unrelated thought that lines up nicely with my post below:
"My brother-in-law Jim Mullaney, who for several years wrote The Destroyer novels, emailed me this today: �We only have ten years left to live!!!!
I seem to recall Ted Danson warning us that the oceans were going to explode or something in ten years back in the 1980s. And I remember those Nitty Gritty Dirt Band scientists/climatologists/"Mr. Bojangles" singers had a warning on one of their 1980s albums saying that we only had ten years before my shaving cream can caused Earth to slam into Jupiter. Seems like we've exceeded both of those ten-years-and-we're-off-the-cliff warnings by something like six or eight years, and I think Earth is still here. Wait, let me look out my window... Yep, still here. (Leftist twits.)�
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:19 PM
I recently finished the book Fallen Angels. It's a quirky sci-fi book that explores a future where technology is shunned on an Earth heading into a new ice age. The twist is that the greenhouse gasses produced by man had held off the ice age until environmentalists took control and prohibited the means of the production of those gasses.
Well, it appears scientists have made some interesting discoveries:
The findings from a team of American climate experts suggest that were it not for greenhouse gases produced by humans, the world would be well on the way to a frozen Armageddon.
Scientists have traditionally viewed the relative stability of the Earth's climate since the end of the last ice age 10,000 years ago as being due to natural causes, but there is evidence that changes in solar radiation and greenhouse gas concentrations should have driven the Earth towards glacial conditions over the last few thousand years.
What stopped it has been the activity of humans, both ancient and modern, argue the scientists.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:09 PM
"The soldiers went to search his bedroom. He heard laughing, and then they called for him, he said. Imaad went to his room and saw that the soldiers had found several magazines he kept hidden from his mother. They had pictures of girls in swimsuits and erotic poses. Imaad said the soldiers spread the magazines on his bed and put his Koran in the middle.
"�This is a good match," Imaad said one of the soldiers told him.
"��It was a nightmare,"�� he said. "��I will never forget those bad soldiers when they put the Koran among the magazines."��
Within 20 minutes, the soldiers left without arresting him or his mother. While the soldiers went next door to search his neighbor'��s house, Imaad began to slap his mother, he said. �"The American people are devils,"�� Um Imaad recalled her son repeating.
He left her and went to a mosque to spend the night. "I asked God to forgive me," Imaad said, "��because I could not prevent American sins."
The Army'��s Task Force Baghdad, which includes soldiers from the 1st Cavalry and 82nd Airborne Divisions, are mainly responsible for securing the capital city.
Lt. Col. James Hutton, a spokesman for the 1st Cavalry, said Task Force Baghdad soldiers were not involved in the raid that night. He said other U.S. units, including military police, operate in Baghdad but that he had no information about their possible involvement.
Army Lt. Col. Daniel Baggio, another military spokesman in Baghdad, said he also could not confirm that a raid took place that night. "��That sort of behavior is not condoned by the U.S. military, and I find it hard to believe U.S. soldiers would do that," he said. "��I a��m not saying it did no��t happen. It just seems odd."
Posted by Critical Matt at 2:48 PM
"It's an old point. but it's worth making again, the notion that one group finds something 'offensive' is becoming one of the more insidious enemies of freedom, particularly in the age of state-sanctioned multiculturalism.
So here's this ominous little story from the London Times :
"Billboard adverts featuring partial nudity are being defaced by Muslim activists who are offended by displays of flesh. The advertising watchdog has confirmed that increasing numbers of posters are being torn down or painted over in predominantly Islamic areas. A website giving advice on how to vandalise billboards and listing potential targets has been set up by a group calling themselves Muslims Against Advertising (MAAD). "
"The campaign has gathered momentum since the Advertising Standards Authority banned an underwear advert from being sited near mosques."
"One area we are concerned about is causing religious offence - the use of religious imagery and also being sensitive to location. If something is offensive in a particular area then the company will normally take it down. We're getting more and more complaints about the inappropriate location of adverts, outside schools or places of worship."
Posted by Critical Matt at 2:45 PM
Feel free to post in the comments section, or shoot me an email if there is anything you'd like to see on my site.
Posted by Critical Matt at 6:36 PM
Posted by Critical Matt at 6:30 PM
"But even before Thursday's meeting ended, Red Wings senior vice president Jimmy Devellano said time had run out.
'The season's done,' he said. 'There's no chance that the right deal can remotely be done in the next little while. There's too much work to be done. There's too many I's to dot and T's to cross. You are not going to get this collective bargaining agreement done in two days, three days, one week or two weeks. It's over.'"
Sigh. Well, looks like it's Tiger's baseball this spring. Ick.
Posted by Critical Matt at 5:59 PM
Amusing pictures of protesters in DC the other day.
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:36 PM
Do we have the will to name our real enemy in the fight against terror? Click on the link above.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:01 PM
"and so do we. Our message is freedom, and President Bush delivered that message brilliantly in his just completed inaugural address. In substance, tone, and (at times) rhetorical style, the speech withstands comparison to the first and best such address I've heard -- President Kennedy's in 1961.
The MSM, I expect, will rip this uncompromising and single-minded assertion of our values and ideals. But that's because it won't acknowledge that we're at war. Those who know that we are will welcome the echoes of Churchill and Kennedy as just the kind of rhetoric demanded by the times. Thus, who are unsure are a step closer to understanding, if they were fortunate to hear the president's clarion call."
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:40 PM
"Initially, Roncalli's Pat Kuntz thought the call was a prank. When his cell phone rang, the caller ID screen read "unknown." He picked it up anyway.
"This is Charlie Weis," the voice on the other end said on Dec. 23.
"No it's not," Kuntz responded.
"Yeah, it really is," the Notre Dame football coach said.
Weis offered Kuntz a scholarship during the call, clouding the defensive lineman's college picture. Kuntz was set to announce his decision the next day at a family gathering. He had planned to attend either Michigan State or Louisville. He put the announcement on hold."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 10:38 AM
Is Syria next? One can hope.
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:00 AM
"NEW YORK - Filmmaker Michael Moore's (search) bodyguard was arrested for carrying an unlicensed weapon in New York's JFK airport Wednesday night"
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:40 AM
"Well, sure. ABC wants to "balance" its coverage of President Bush's inauguration with coverage of a military funeral:
Jan. 19, 2005 - For a possible Inauguration Day story on ABC News, we are trying to find out if there any military funerals for Iraq war casualties scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 20. If you know of a funeral and whether the family might be willing to talk to ABC News, please fill out the form below:
"So here we have a public broadcaster who explicitly intends on using the death of at least one American serviceperson -- specifically in Iraq, so dead American soldiers or Marines in Kosovo or Afghanistan need not apply -- as a means to make a political statement about Bush's inauguration. If your son or daughter, sister or brother, or friend or neighbor isn't lucky enough to be buried on January 20th, don't bother applying, because ABC and Disney won't give a rat's ass about him or her.
The sheer chutzpah and shallowness doesn't surprise me as much as the laziness that this demonstrates. It's not enough that some bloodsucking leech wants to use the grief of some poor family as entertainment and political theater. They are too freakin' lazy to go out and find one themselves, so they want someone to get them an invitation to the funeral.
Whoever posted this at ABC needs a soul transplant. Disgusting."
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:56 PM
I'd love a short season with the teams playing every other night. It'd be playoff intensity until the Cup finals.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:36 PM
On Ebay no less.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:23 PM
"This week in the New Yorker magazine Seymour Hersh wrote the following words: "The administration has been conducting secret reconnaissance missions inside Iran ... Much of the focus is on accumulation of intelligence and targeting information on Iranian nuclear, chemical and missile sites ... [The] American commando task force has been set up in South Asia and is now working closely with a group of Pakistani scientists and technicians who had dealt with Iranian counterparts ... The American task force ... has been penetrating eastern Iran from Afghanistan in a hunt for underground installations ... The task force members, or their locally recruited agents, secreted remote detection devices."
"I was shocked when I read Mr. Hersh's article. Note the tenses he uses to describe American military action: "The American commando task force ... is now working," "has been conducting secret reconnaissance." In other words, Mr. Hersh is revealing to all the world, including the Iranian government, that our commandos are currently behind enemy lines."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:17 PM
Jan 19, 2005 5:05 pm US/Eastern
BOSTON (AP) -- The FBI has notified law enforcement agencies in Boston to be on the lookout for four people described as possible terror suspects who may be headed to the Boston area.
A federal law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity tells The Associated Press that the FBI's joint terrorism task force has not yet corroborated a tip that terror suspects may have entered the U-S through Mexico in recent days.
The official says the tip came from an unidentified individual and is similar to dozens received by law enforcement agencies each week.
A spokesman for Governor Romney says the governor will speak with reporters this afternoon in Washington DC and then return to Boston. Romney was in Washington to attend President Bush's inauguration.
FBI spokeswoman Gail Marcinkiewicz says the terror alert has NOT been raised in Boston.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Posted by Critical Matt at 5:58 PM
This quick but amusing test is designed to measure the powers of concentration of the average male. Think you've got what it takes to outsmart the average street gambler? Then step up and give it a try.
WARNING - NOT WORK SAFE.
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:12 PM
"Where's the beef? It's at a Pennsylvania pub that serves the world's biggest burger - weighing in at NINE lip-smacking pounds! That's no whopper - you can actually get this meat monster for $23.95, loaded with all the fixings: Two whole tomatoes, a half-head of lettuce, 12 slices of American cheese, a full cup of peppers, two entire onions, plus, a river of mayonnaise, ketchup, and mustard."
A Welsh View has photos of the gal.
"JANUARY 18--Richard Hatch, the first winner of CBS's "Survivor," was charged today with failing to report his $1 million reality TV windfall to the Internal Revenue Service. The below two-count criminal information, unsealed today in U.S. District Court in Rhode Island, charges Hatch with filing a false 2000 tax return that omitted his seven-figure "Survivor" winnings. The nudity enthusiast, 43, is also charged with filing a false return for 2001 (he allegedly did not report $321,000 paid to him by a Boston radio station). If convicted of the felony charges, Hatch could face a maximum of five years in prison for each count and could be hit with a $250,000 fine. Hatch is scheduled to be arraigned on the charges in Providence federal court January 24."
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:25 PM
"It's a good rule of thumb that, no matter how big an idiot someone is, he can never compete with the political class's response to his idiocy. Thus, whatever feelings of unease I might have had about Prince Hitler were swept away the moment the rent-a-quote humbugs started lining up to denounce him."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:16 PM
Archbishop Basile Georges Casmoussa, kidnapped just yesterday in Mosul, has been released . It appears that the kidnapping may have been of the for-profit rather than political variety, as it has now been disclosed that the kidnappers demanded a $200,000 ransom. At this point, the facts are still unclear, but the Vatican denies having paid anything to secure the Archbishop's release.
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:13 PM
"Just got in from a Music for Relief (musicforrelief.org) tsunami relief concert featuring Tenacious D and guests. I doubt you will be able to confirm this anywhere, but I want to give you my firsthand account.
Eddie Vedder was one of the special guests. After singing two songs, he remarked that we were all there for a good cause, but added he didn't think we should "have to contribute all this money" since our government could easily give enough for all of us. And since so many of the victims of the disaster were Muslim, he continued, he thought that the money should come "out of the anti-terrorism fund."
He threw in a snarky afterthought; he was upset he was not invited to the Inauguration. I yelled as loud as I could, "I WAS!" My wife tossed in "shut up and sing!" for good measure.
It should be noted that Tenacious D rocked the [house] and said nothing stupid."
Sigh. Pearl Jam is my favorite band and it is becoming increasingly difficult to hear this garbage and seperate it from my love of their music.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:56 PM
"Sometimes it seems as if Seymour Hersh -- the seeming bete noire of the Bush administration -- has an open "leak line" from disgruntled CIA agents and surly State Department officials permanently plugged into his ear. When I heard about his latest infusion of goo in The New Yorker this morning, to wit that the US is spying on Iranian nuclear installations and trying to figure out what to do about them (planning special ops, air raids, etc.), I thought "Here he goes again, leaking top secret information!" But then I thought - duh, what top secret information? Is it possible that any US administration, Democrat or Republican, at this juncture in history would not be directing its intelligence agencies to take a long hard look at Iranian nukes and game plan how to deal with them? Of course not. In fact it would be at the very top of anybody's agenda.
So then why The Big Leak? Well, if I were someone in the government who wanted to announce that we were taking a tough line and had some nasty surprises for the mullahs (to scare them, of course), but didn't want to make this an official public policy statement, what would I do? I'd leak it to Seymour Hersh and count to five.
Am I wrong? The President of the United States has now essentially corroborated Hersh."
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:53 PM
"Sarah Boxer's story on IraqTheModel in today's New York Times Arts section is irresponsible, sloppy, lazy, inaccurate, incomplete, exploitive, biased, and -- worst of all -- dangerous, putting the lives of its subjects at risk. Let's start with her lead:
When I telephoned a man named Ali Fadhil in Baghdad last week, I wondered who might answer. A C.I.A. operative? An American posing as an Iraqi? Someone paid by the Defense Department to support the war? Or simply an Iraqi with some mixed feelings about the American presence in Iraq? Until he picked up the phone, he was just a ghost on the Internet. So here is a reporter from The New York Times -- let's repeat that, The New York Times -- speculating in print on whether an Iraqi citizen, whose only apparent weirdness and sin in her eyes is (a) publishing and (b) supporting America, is a CIA or Defense Department plant or an American.
Click on the link to see the whole story.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:35 PM
BAGHDAD, Iraq - Insurgents kidnapped a Catholic archbishop and targeted security forces in a series of brazen assaults Monday that killed more than 20 people. A suicide bomber attacked U.S. Marines in Ramadi, where insurgents also beheaded two Shiite Muslims and left their bodies on a sidewalk.
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:04 PM
Brian Hecht has a good look at the trial of accused terrorist abetter Lynne Stewart: A Terrorist Lawyer on Trial.
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:03 PM
"Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid appears to be saying "Bring it on," to GOP Senate Chieftan, Bill Frist, regarding the latter's threat to wipe out the Democrats' ability to filibuster President Bush's judicial nominees.
I guess there really are two issues here: (1) will Frist finally grow the cojones necessary to take Senator Reid up on that offer, and (2) will Senator Reid, and the rest of his caucus, still be rambunctious, as of November 2006, especially if the Democrats lose yet another couple of net seats in the Upper Chamber?"
Posted by Critical Matt at 9:00 PM
"Reader Tom Pechinski points out that the ABC television affiliate in New York has reported another possible terrorist connection in the horrifying case of the family of Coptic Christians who had their throats cut after the father argued with Muslims on a web site:"
ABC News has learned that a cousin of the slain family has been a translator working for the prosecution in the trial of Lynne Stewart. She is the radical lawyer accused of smuggling messages from imprisoned Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, to terrorist cell members and associates.
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:58 PM
Please call and make your reservations. Ask to be put near the Fennelly group.
If you have any questions, post them in the comments section.
Click on the header to link directly to the campground's website.
We've had our cabin site moved so that our entire group can be put near each other whether you are in a cabin, camper, or tent. Jenna has also added some nearby hotels into the comments section.
Posted by Critical Matt at 6:20 PM
Physician blogger Dr. Bob says one of his patients, a federal air marshal, told him about a foiled hijacking involving boxcutters hidden in overhead luggage bins:
He and his partner were assigned to a flight (the airline, airport, and destination were not disclosed) in their customary undercover security role. They boarded the airplane early in order to meet the flight attendants, at which time the cleaning crew was still on the airplane -- somewhat longer than expected. My patient and his partner sat together in seats near the middle of coach class.
The passengers began to board, and he and his partner noticed a single Middle Eastern man sitting near the front of first class. After a number of passengers had boarded, two Middle Eastern men walked by this man and made eye contact, but said nothing. They sat down together in the front of coach class. Shortly thereafter, two other Middle Eastern men also walked by the man in first class and made eye contact without speaking. They sat near the back of coach class.
Shortly after the flight attendants completed their post-boarding check of the overhead bins, an announcement came from the cockpit: the pilot stated that there had been a security breach, and everyone needed to deboard the plane for a second, more thorough, security screening. The Air Marshall and his partner were confused, as they had not triggered the security alert nor been notified of it prior to the announcement.
After all the passengers had deplaned, the Federal Air Marshalls checked with the flight attendants for more information. During a final check of the overhead bins, a flight attendant had noticed that one of the blankets was slightly unfolded, and he repositioned it in the bin. At this time, a razor blade fell out of the blanket. Concerned, but still believing this might be a straightforward mistake, the flight attendant began to check other overhead bins. Several additional incompletely folded blankets were noted, and hidden in each one was a box cutter: a total of five. It appeared that these had been placed there by the cleaning crew prior to the boarding of the airplane.
After the repeat security screening, the passengers reboarded -- all except the five Middle Eastern men, who were nowhere to be found. The flight proceeded to its destination uneventfully.
Posted by Critical Matt at 12:57 PM
Seen on the BBC the other night:
The Asian tsunami has provided a perfect example of the need for an efective UN under an activist Secretary General. This time Kofi Annan was quick off the mark and America's independent efforts soon looked superfluous.
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:15 AM
Deacon at Powerline writes:
"An attorney at a Washington D.C. law firm (not mine) told me that her firm is closed for inauguration day, but a number of attorneys plan to work anyway as a protest against another Bush term. To me, this raises an interesting philosophical question: can something be a protest if those against whom it is directed (a) don't know about it; (b) can't be affected by it, even indirectly; and (c) would be completely indifferent about the conduct associated with the protest even if they knew of it?"
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:06 AM
President Bush says he now sees that tough talk can have an 'unintended consequence.'
During a round-table interview with reporters from 14 newspapers, the president, who not long ago declined to identify any mistakes he'd made during his first term, expressed misgivings for two of his most famous expressions: 'Bring 'em on,' in reference to Iraqis attacking U.S. troops, and his vow to get Osama bin Laden 'dead or alive.'
'Sometimes, words have consequences you don't intend them to mean,' Bush said Thursday.
''Bring 'em on' is the classic example, when I was really trying to rally the troops and make it clear to them that I fully understood, you know, what a great job they were doing. And those words had an unintended consequence. It kind of, some interpreted it to be defiance in the face of danger. That certainly wasn't the case.'
He also told the reporters that the 'dead or alive' comment about Osama bin Laden came off the cuff. Both comments received fierce criticism which continues to this day -- and the critics include Laura Bush, who scolded George for his defiant commentary, according to the President.
For myself, I feel that this is overblown. The 'dead or alive' comment was pure W -- he was angry and he vented, a human thing to do, and one which captured the spirit of Americans at the time. As for 'bring it on,' does anyone think that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi would have conducted himself any differently had Bush not said it? Would he have beheaded one or two fewer people in Iraq? Of course not. Politically, it was a bit tone-deaf, but operationally it's the biggest nothing in the past four years.
Speaking of tone-deaf, I wonder if Kerry will admit to any regret over picking up 'bring it on' as his campaign slogan. Always delivered in drawn-out stentorian tones, he intended its use as a tweak of Bush's nose. It worked out dramatically different for the erstwhile candidate, as the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth hammered him for months about the Viet Nam experience he attempted to make the centerpiece of the campaign. By the end of August, he begged George Bush to call them off, making his challenge a satirical caption to the picture of incompetence his campaign became.
At least Bush chose those words in haste. Kerry learned the hard way after deliberately picking them up."
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:03 AM
"Davison, Mich, — Oscar on the shelf or not, Michael Moore is not getting much respect at his old high school.
Despite his fame and many honors, the filmmaker has been rejected all four times that he has been nominated for Davison High School's Hall of Fame.
"Would you want him as a role model? Would you want your son or daughter to be like him?" asked Don Hammond, a member of the Davison Hall of Fame selection committee, who has voted not to elect Moore. "I haven't talked to anybody yet who's for him. The word to describe Michael Moore is embarrassing. He embarrasses everybody."
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:56 AM
"Decades ago, it was physicist Enrico Fermi who pondered the issue of extraterrestrial civilizations with fellow theorists over lunch, generating the famous quip: 'Where are they?' That question later became central to debates about the cosmological census count of other star folk and possible extraterrestrial (ET) visitors from afar."
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:53 AM
"Reading the pages of foreign-policy journals, between the long tracts on Bush's "failures" and neoconservative "arrogance," one encounters mostly predictions of defeat and calls for phased withdrawal — always with resounding criticism of the American "botched" occupation.
Platitudes follow: "We can't just leave now," followed by no real advice on how a fascist society can be jumpstarted into a modern liberal republic. After all, there is no government handbook entitled, "Operation 1A: How to remove a Middle East fascist regime in three weeks, reconstruct the countryside, and hold the first elections in the nation's history — all within two years." Almost all who supported the war now are bailing on the pretext that their version of the reconstruction was not followed: While a three-week war was their idea, a 20-month messy reconstruction was surely someone else's. Yesterday genius is today's fool — and who knows next month if the elections work? Witness Afghanistan where all those who recently said the victory was "lost" to warlords are now suddenly quiet."
Click on the link to read it all.
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:49 AM
Well, I've been sitting in a Goodyear shop for 2 hours now waiting for the company car to get fixed. I noticed a problem while I was pulling out of the driveway and the rear tires didn't spin. I managed to destroy a strip of my own lawn getting it towed out. Apparently the rear brakes froze. They're now replacing the rotors and pads and I hope to get out of here soon. I should have taken a photo of being stuck in my own paved driveway. High-larious.
Posted by Critical Matt at 11:35 AM
I've had XM for about two months now and I don't think I could go back to regular radio. My territory in Michigan takes me from Oakland to Alpena and west to Gladwin, it also includes all of the thumb. I can get 120 channels static free. It's so much better than listening to the recipe show once I hit Saginaw.
Posted by Critical Matt at 6:46 PM
"Michael Moore and I actually have a lot in common - we both appreciate living in a country where there's free expression,' Eastwood told the star-dotted crowd attending the National Board of Review awards dinner at Tavern on the Green, where Eastwood picked up a Special Filmmaking Achievement prize for 'Million Dollar Baby.'
Then, the Republican-leaning actor/director advised the lefty filmmaker: 'But, Michael, if you ever show up at my front door with a camera - I'll kill you.'"
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:13 PM
"You probably don't know Rafael Peralta's name. If we lived in a country that more fully celebrated the heroics of its men in uniform, you would. He was a sergeant in Company A, 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment for Operation Dawn, the November offensive to retake the Iraqi city of Fallujah, which had become a haven for terrorists. What he did on the day of Nov. 15 was an awe-inspiring act of selfless sacrifice and faithfulness to his fellow Marines."
Read all of it.
Posted by Critical Matt at 10:50 PM
Posted by Critical Matt at 8:36 PM
Highlight Reel: Weblogs: "I got a call from Coach Mariucci and Matt Millen, both this morning saying exactly that. Obviously I didn't read the article, and had no idea it came out. But I got a call saying that there was some article written, and a wildfire had spread. They just wanted to call tell me they didn't say any of the things, the stuff that's being reported or written was completely untrue.
And I'm glad they did it, because if I had heard from another source -- since I don't read this stuff -- if I had heard from a friend or someone who read the article saying 'Hey Coach and Matt Millen said this about you' and I hadn't heard from them personally, my inclination would be to think that maybe they were thinking that. But they both called me, reassured me that there's no truth behind it. I believe them one hundred percent.
Posted by Critical Matt at 7:25 PM
John Derbyshire: "I have not, in fact, sent anything to the tsunami victims. I don't say this with any satisfaction, though I'm not particularly ashamed of it, either. Some numbers of my tax dollars are there in Uncle Sam's package. That'll have to do. It's not that I'm uncharitable. I don't think I come up to the old Wesleyan standard of 'Make all you can, save all you can, give all you can,' no more in the first two clauses than the last, but I write a check now and again. This past few weeks I've sent 50 bucks to the Marine Corps League and $200 to a building appeal by my church. I've diverted one small income stream to a medical charity in memory of a friend who died last month. It's not much, but from a modest lower-middle-class income, it's not nothing.
So why haven't I given to the tsunami funds? Because I haven't been sufficiently moved to. Why not? What claim do the Marine Corps League, the Episcopal Church, and the Lahey Clinic have on my meager charitable impulses that the suffering people of south Asia don't have?
The short answer is that the south Asians are too distant and too foreign. The way human beings are made, we give up most of our interpersonal emotions to our families and friends. What little is left we spread among people, or causes, with whom we feel some natural sympathy. Most of those are going to be close at hand: our church, our political party, our school funds and youth groups, our associations of common interest. Obviously Thai storekeepers and Sri Lankan peasants don't fall into any of those groups."
I find that I agree with Mr. Derbyshire on this point. Assuming all the money promised by world goverments makes it to South Asia, I'd prefer to support local charities and keep my money in the area.
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:26 PM
Posted by Critical Matt at 1:15 PM
Welcome to Lapeer Living. I'll be updating daily with items of interest I find throughout the day. This blog will also be a clearing house for information important to me. I will soon hope to have a few more peopel to help me 'team blog' this site to give different viewpoints. Please feel free to contact me or post in the comments section.
Posted by Critical Matt at 10:28 AM