Monday, February 28, 2005

Oscar Magic

So, not to reopen a topic of controversy, but I had to mention my favorite Oscar moment last night (I had it on, but was mainly surfing the web) was when Hillary Swank won for best actress and the voiceover intoned "This is Hillary Swank's second Oscar in this category, and the first ever for a woman playing a boxer." What a stupid comment. How many Oscars are handed out for people portraying ANY job, let alone for one as obscure as female boxing?

Friday, February 25, 2005

Identity Theft

As we all know, identity theft is a growing problem in the US. I have read too many stories about people who have their identities stolen and then spend countless hours attempting to repair their credit, restore their good name, etc. Sometimes even quitting their jobs they spend so much time doing this.

CNN has an article about a company who exposed 145,000 people to identity theft. The article points out some of the issues regarding identity theft that I have been wondering about for a while now.

The whole problem behind identity theft seems to revolve around the fact that the three main credit bureaus don't have their act together. I have read in numerous reports that they have made it way too easy to open a line of credit. It can often be done with inaccurate or incomplete information on the application. It is a problem that they have created and I think it is even crazier that they have the gall to sell "credit monitoring services". The federal government hasn't gone nearly far enough regulating these "services". According to the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act consumers can put a 90 day fraud alert on their credit reports. This "alert forces banks, car dealers and other lenders to apply additional scrutiny whenever anyone tries to apply for credit in that person's name". Why can't these additional measures be done all the time. I would rather have it take longer to apply for a line of credit than have myself exposed to identity theft.

I am not a big fan of class action lawsuits, but I hope this company is buried permanently!

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Hunter S. Thompson update

This is totally awesome...What a hilarious set of interviews on a hilarious topic.

Hunter S. Thompson Update

Forgotten Music

One of the great things about owning a 40GB iPod is the ability to quickly access just about every CD I own. For instance... They Might Be Giants "Flood"... When was the last time that YOU listened to that?

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Hilarious opinion piece from the Onion...

Check it out - you won't regret it! SO funny! A great editorial from the Onion.
The Onion

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Good stuff...and an obit

"This notion that the United States is getting ready to attack Iran is simply ridiculous. And having said that, all options are on the table."—President Bush, Brussels, Belgium, Feb. 22, 2005

Classic! Actually, I understand why he says it: 1) he knows we don't have to capability to really attack Iran right now. 2) He's trying to bluff Iran into believing we can (although they're not that dumb). I probably wouldn't have thought of anything better to say, and to be honest it's pretty coherent as far as one of Bush's sentences goes. Still funny though.

A comment on Hunter S. Thompson - I've never read much of his stuff, although I read Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail when I was working for a political consulting and polling company right out of college. I thought it was pretty good, if I recall. I think I'd probably enjoy it more now that I'm a little less naive. To be honest, my more intimate connection to Thompson comes from the character of Uncle Duke in Doonesbury, which I have followed quasi-religiously for the last couple of years. He is, by far, my favorite character and really cracks me up. His implicit critique of the Bush Administration is hilarious and although I know Thompson never appreciated the send-up, I think it's quite a tribute. Anyway, below is the official Doonesbury biography for Uncle Duke. Even reading this, a summary of a parody, gives some insight into Hunter S. Thompson (I think). I hope that Trudeau continues with the character despite the loss of the inspiration.

Duke
Some people regard "Uncle" Duke, a rabid controlled-substances buff, as " the High Lord of Inner Space." But in fact he has a long record, some of it involving public service. Few writers at Rolling Stone have been able to move on to something as substantial as Governor of American Samoa, which led to a post as Ambassador to China. Following his triumph in Peking, Mr. Duke enjoyed a brief career as a laetrile farmer. After applying for jobs as President of Yale and head of ABC News, he made a name for himself as General Manager of the Washington Redskins. His experience packing heat led him to serve as a lobbyist for the NRA, followed by some sensitive work in Iran for Universal Petroleum. After bargaining for his life before a firing squad, Mr. Duke disappeared for l7 months, then surfaced as "the 53rd hostage." Upon release he settled down as a drug smuggler in Florida, a career cut short by an ill-fated sightseeing cruise to the Falklands War. Following his rescue from Matagorda Island, Duke became entangled in Hollywood politics, the John Delorean story, and a major cocaine bust.
Abruptly moving to Haiti, he opened the Baby Doc College of Offshore Medicine. Discovered more inert than usual one morning, he was pronounced dead, which led the St. Petersburg Times to run a full obituary. Fortunately it turned out that Duke was not dead, only zombified and sold into slavery. A friend noted, "Frankly, he could use the discipline." After losing his condom company to John Gotti over a bad loan, Duke took a much-deserved rest in Bellevue, returned to active duty as captain of the Trump Princess, then rescued his former translator and devoted love-slave Honey Huan from China.
Tapped by George Bush to serve as Maximum Proconsul in post-invasion Panama, he moved on to smuggle guns to the Kuwaiti resistance, then opened Club Scud, a popular wartime watering hole in Kuwait City. After working on David Duke's campaign, he moved into the "nonprofit" sector, opening Nothing But Orphans. One of his first charges, according to DNA test results, was a long-lost son, Earl. Abandoning the orphans and Ms. Huan, father and son lived in a trailer in Las Vegas, pursuing the gaming arts and trafficking in stolen Beanie Babies.
His stint as a key advisor to Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura led Duke to make a run at the White House. The "Duke2000 -- Whatever It Takes" campaign, headquartered in a motel in Coon Rapids, Minnesota, was a resounding failure, despite the efforts of campaign manager "Mini-D" and corporate sponsorships by heavy hitters Lipton Tea and Absolut Vodka. A successful business trafficking in stem cells was followed by a lucrative involvement in the messy fallout from the Enron scandal. As conflict with Iraq loomed, Duke made a return to government work, taking up a post as Viceroy-in-Waiting.

Monday, February 21, 2005

I can't remember the exact saying, but isn't there one that says believe nothing of what you hear (or read) and only half of what you see. I'll be the first to admit that I have neither the time nor inclination to check absolutely every fact from every statement that I lay down on this blog. However, if you are going to write an inflammatory piece on an organization, regardless of how you feel about them, shouldn't you at least do a cursory examination of what they are about? If for nothing else than to prevent yourself from looking like a total ass.

From Joel Mowbray's article "Worse still, for several months after 9/11, CAIR even refused to condemn Osama bin Laden for the murder of 3,000 Americans"

From Neal's Nuze (Neal Boortz website) "The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) condemns the Fox show '24,' but Joel Mowbray would like to know why they won't condemn Islamic terrorists?"

From a statement released by CAIR on Sep 16, 2001 "American Muslims unequivocally codemn these vicious and cowardly acts of terrorism"

From a statement released by CAIR on Dec 13, 2001 "For anyone who was not convinced of Osama bin Laden's complicity in the events of September 11, the content of this videotape should remove all doubt. Bin Laden clearly spoke as someone who had foreknowledge of the attacks.

The tape was particularly disturbing for several reasons:

1. Bin Laden seemed to revel in the death and destruction in Washington and New York.

2. He falsely implied that the acts of the hijackers were justified by Islamic beliefs.

3. He made the sickening statement that the attacks "benefited Islam greatly."

As we have stated repeatedly, the tragedy that occurred on September 11 cannot be justified by any cause or religion. We restate our condemnation of those who committed this crime and look forward to seeing the perpetrators brought to justice.
"

Am I really the only one who after reading a piece like Joel Mowbray's digs a little deeper to make sure I don't spout off idiotic nonsense?

I watched the Daytona 500 on Sunday. All 200 laps (or actually 203). It was an exciting race and I was glad to see Jeff Gordon win it. Looking at the prize money that was awarded, I'd like to point out that Bobby Labonte who finished last and ran only 14 laps made approximately 7000 per mile. Not a bad gig.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Basketball Update

Ouch. An interesting article, including information about athletics revenues and the like. The lesson: Don't jump to Division I when you are way under .500 in Division II.
Savannah State

For Warriors

I've been meaning to post an entry about this for a while (ever since the AFC Championship game). I think Nike's new commercial "For Warriors" is awesome. It has six athletes putting on their game faces in the form of tribal masks. It's got some really incredible imagery and the music is just flat out creepy. I think this is an either love it or hate it commercial. I love it, my wife hates it.

If you haven't seen the commercial here is a link where you can download it

http://niketown.nike.com/niketown/catalog/category.jsp?categoryId=52627

I think the actual title for the commercial is Masks and the company that made it is Wieden + Kennedy.

My two cents

One of the good things about having a blog is being able to write anything you want... perhaps multiple times, I can't remember. But anyway, the San Diego Chargers just slapped the franchise tag on QB Drew Brees. They did this in part because he was set to become a free agent, he had a pro-bowl year, and they don't know what to do with him. The problem lies in that the Chargers effectively used the number one pick in last year's draft on Philip Rivers and now have a messy situation on their hands.

What to do? Cut your losses and go with Brees (who may still end up a bust) or cut your losses and go with Rivers (who may still be a bust). It is looking more and more like they are going to try and trade Brees. I think this is a mistake. What it comes down to is that they pulled the trigger on Rivers because after a horrible 2003 season, they gave up on Brees. Were it not for a contract hold-out, Brees may not have even played this year. But he did and he turned it into a Pro-Bowl year.

First and foremost the Chargers made a mistake by giving up on Brees so quickly. Going into this past year Brees had only had two full years which is not nearly enough to judge a quarterback (in my opinion). Now they are almost forced to go with Rivers because they spent the first pick in the draft on him and Brees is viewed as expendable. This will be their second mistake in this situation.

If the Chargers were smart they would stay with Brees and try to trade Rivers. At least you know Brees has the ability to have a Pro-Bowl year. What do you know about Rivers? He may turn out to be the next Ryan Leaf. They are both young, both have a lot of potential but at least Brees has proved he can be successful.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

A little partisan love for my boys

I haven't talked about college basketball a lot this season and that is mainly because if there is one team that hasn't been able to live up to the hype over the last five years or so, it's been the Florida Gators. After a national championship game in 2000, Florida has not been able to live up to expectations. For a while they were regularly ranked in the top 25, even reaching number 1 at some point last season. The very first game after their number 1 ranking they went up to Kentucky and lost by around 30 points. So I can admit it. Over the past few seasons, Florida may have been more hype than substance. I know too they have had a lot of unpredictable issues; however, other teams have things they need to work through and it doesn't explain some of the epic collapses they have had in the first weekend of the NCAA tournament.

Actually back up... wait a minute... maybe I'm being too hard on Florida. It is an honor to just reach the tournament. I mean, some teams haven't reached the tournament since 1998. The minute football season is over they turn their attention to Men's Baseball, or Synchronized Diving, or Circus, or whatever. But I digress.

This year seems to be different for the Gators, they are definitely flying under the radar. I haven't seen a whole lot of highlights or articles, yet they seem to be really pounding most of the SEC lately. They only lost by 3 at Kenucky. The problem with Florida is that they have never really been able to live up to expectations, hopefully now that noone is really paying attention to them they'll make some noise in the tournament.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Holy inappropriate, Batman!

Check out what Rick Majerus said on TV:

More info than we needed
ESPN college basketball analyst Rick Majerus, on a Kentucky-Tennessee game last week, said he hoped to get a glimpse of Ashley Judd, an actress and Kentucky fan, so he wouldn't "have to watch adult videos back at the hotel."
Said ESPN's Mike Soltys on Sunday, "We recognize it was inappropriate, as does Rick, and we apologize."

Good lord! What goes through some people's heads?

Catholicism WOW!

Who says Catholicism is a repressed, guilt-ridden denomination?
Nuns Gone Wild
Admit it, this is totally hot. Imagine the stories these men must be telling. Their friends are totally calling bullshit on them. If only they knew...

Next topic then

Here is one we can both agree on? Just a quick scan of headlines on CNN's webpage... I couldn't agree more with this. And before anyone accuses me of being socialist keep in mind that capitalism relies on competition and Wal-Marts has no competition.

My favorite line is from a Wal-Mart spokesman who says that it's not the government's job to pick winners or losers in the competitive marketplace. Focus on the word competitive.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Why people find Chris Rock funny is beyond me. Always racially sensitive, Chris Rock is now bashing an awards show he agreed to host. I can't believe that he can get away with comments like saying the only time he watches the Oscars is when black actors were nominated or that the awards themselves are "idiotic" and have the producer brush it off. It sounds to me like a little more than "humorous digs" at a show that is "a bit too stuffy".

The thing is that I actually don't have a problem with the actual statements. He's entitled to his view just like everyone else. I just can't understand the double standard that says he can be as inflammatory as he wants, but it is viewed as edgy or hip. I could bring up the "Could you imagine the outrage if a white person had said...", but really my only question is why would the academy want someone to host their show that is going to say such derogatory things towards it?

FAILURE'D!!!

I could have told you this all along. Something tells me that Larry Summers won't be getting any apologies any time soon.

I remember reading something somewhere that it was shown that men naturally produce more serotonin than women. It offered some explanation (aside from sexual discrimination) as to why men are more success oriented than women. They are more aggressive, more likely to ignore factors that indicate failure is possible, etc.

I especially like the line about men being "better at getting right to the issue".

Monday, February 14, 2005

A male prostitute in the White House (and it's not who you think)

This is hilarious. Not even from some partisan perspective, because I don't think it's a very big deal politically. But it is, neverthless, very funny. And it looks like this blogger has his facts in order.
Fred Garvin, Male Prostitute

Sweet Lord.

If Kobe Bryant is your character witness, you are done for. No joke necessary.

The offense of missle defense

Good heavens. When will they give up on this program? Waste of taxpayer dollars
I cannot think of a bigger waste of tax money. With budget deficits through the roof, with talk about defaulting on social security debts, etc., can we really afford to be fighting the Cold War?

The Trifecta!

Awesome. Just when it couldn't get any better. Can you imagine when their grandkids ask: "How did you and grandma meet?" and they just pull out the mug shots and newspaper clippings?
Trifecta

So they are about to cancel the NHL season. Has anyone missed it? I have an idea for a struggling sport that has a diminishing fan base and lacks a network contract... a messy labor contract that paints both sides as greedy. While you're at it, cancel the season, let's see if that boosts numbers. I'm no economic expert and I don't know a whole lot about the business of owning an NHL franchise, but I do know the sport has been struggling for years and the biggest sticking point of the lock out is whether or not to impose a salary cap. The owners want it, the players don't.

I'm sorry, but I have to side with the owners on this one. If you have a failing business, the last thing you need to do is pay bloated contracts. Salary caps have been proven to be successful. They work in the NFL and NBA. Obviously the NHL players feel that they are getting shafted financially, but I have a hard time believing that these franchise owners are so rolling in dough that they are willing to finish off their already sinking franchises.

It doesn't matter, the NHL was already a mess to begin with, the WNBA looks solid by comparison. I have an idea, instead of cancelling the season, how about you cancel the league.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Stranger and stranger...

Proof that fat people hate babies!

"I ate a baby." - Fat Bastard

P.S.

Even more badass

Toyota has a good thing going here

So I was looking through some automobile pictures of mostly European super cars and one in particular caught my eye... I was looking at it thinking, man that is a nice ride when I realized... wait a second that... that's a...



Scion tC

OK, I found something much more substantial to blog about. I had no idea that the British were so passionate about their IKEA!

I was quite disappointed in last night's The Apprentice. Usually you have two teams doing some extremely difficult task in a couple of days for some huge corporation (Pepsi, Nestle, Toys R Us, etc...). And usually the expectations for the teams are adjusted accordingly. For example, last season the teams had to "create" a bottle concept for a new brand of Pepsi. Anyway, both teams came up with their concepts, had prototypes made and presented them to a group of executives. Keep in mind this is a task the company usually reserves for a large division over an extended period of time.

Anyway, last night's show involved the two teams working with Donnie Duetch (some advertising firm) to come up with a TV commercial for a new brand of Dove soap. So both teams get two days to come up with a concept, prepare it, and film it. I thought both teams did a fairly good job... given what the talents they had, time to work with the idea, etc. Donnie Duetch didn't think so. He said they both sucked and didn't declare a winner! What an ass, what does he expect? He has a company who spends an enormous amount of time, money and talent to prepare these TV commercials. What can he expect from a team of lawyers, real estate agents, and copier salesmen to do in two days? Trump totally sold out his teams and railed on them as well. It was pretty disappointing.

I know this probably isn't the most earth shattering topic to write about, but I thought... hey, it's a good place to vent.

Thursday, February 10, 2005



Since we can never get enough student humping teachers. Oh lord, to be thirteen again!

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Photos of Student-Humping Elementary School Teacher

Wow...Even better than could be reasonably hoped for. I don't even think I'd SEEN a girl as hot as this at age 13. This is her engagement photo.



Why are you arresting these teachers?! For God's sake they should be getting promotions!

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Our president speaks:

And they said Kerry was wordy...Here's President Bush explaining his Social Security plan in Tampa on Feb. 4, 2005...

"Because the—all which is on the table begins to address the big cost drivers. For example, how benefits are calculate, for example, is on the table; whether or not benefits rise based upon wage increases or price increases. There's a series of parts of the formula that are being considered. And when you couple that, those different cost drivers, affecting those—changing those with personal accounts, the idea is to get what has been promised more likely to be—or closer delivered to what has been promised. Does that make any sense to you? It's kind of muddled. Look, there's a series of things that cause the—like, for example, benefits are calculated based upon the increase of wages, as opposed to the increase of prices. Some have suggested that we calculate—the benefits will rise based upon inflation, as opposed to wage increases. There is a reform that would help solve the red if that were put into effect. In other words, how fast benefits grow, how fast the promised benefits grow, if those—if that growth is affected, it will help on the red."

Only in Miami... or maybe any other large pretentious city

My Dear Friends:

I just got a letter from my family practitioner. Actually it was a large envelope packed with material. What was he sending this material for you may ask? My family practitioner is changing his practice in order for it to become... a "concierge medical service". According to the materials, the "concierge medical practice" is a "patient focused practice" that will allow the physician to return to the days of unhurried visits, house calls, and personally answering the cell phone. The catch is that he is looking for an annual fee of $1500.00. The brochure has all sorts of phrases like boutique practice, concierge service, MDVIP, limited patient enrollment, etc... so essentially I came to the conclusion that what is really going on, is my doctor is weeding out the people that can't (or won't) pay a fifteen hundred dollar annual fee in order to cater to the wealthier clientele. Not a bad gig if you can get it to work.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Hollywood's out of ideas...

That may seem obvious, but the proof is apparent. While Arnold Schwarzenegger waited until he had made 18 action films before spoofing his own bloated ridiculous characters, Vin Diesel only made 8 before realizing that his career had already peaked and he took his train wreck of a career into the nurturing arms of: the kiddie comedy.
I could cry.

Jacksonville redeemed?

I think so! And so does most of the country, by the looks of it...

USA Today

Orlando Sentinel

Boston Globe

Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Enough of the "dynasty" talk. The Eagles choked away their Super Bowl victory. That I can deal with, but this idea that the Patriots are one of the best teams ever is ridiculous. I mean, how good are they going to be next year without Charlie Weiss and Romeo Crennel? If the Pats go 4 and 12 next year will we still have to listen to crap about them being a "dynasty" or even worse, the post free agency version of a "dynasty"? You want to talk about shlupping a quarterback's D? Can Andrea Kramer or Terry Bradshaw deepthroat any more? For God's sake, it was a sloppy victory over a team that basically handed them the game. Three Super Bowl victories by 3 points each does not a dynasty make. Especially when you have to beat the likes of Carolina for one of them. Get over it and save the dynasty talk for teams that really deserve it.

Friday, February 04, 2005

What happened to free speech in this country?

I can see it working right now, the arguments, the disgust, but anyway, this defends my stance against hate crimes and the regulation of thoughts or words. If you hate me... fine. If you commit a crime against me, that is another matter.

But I think there is a very dangerous thing that is happening right now. What crime has Ward Churchill committed? If you don't know who he is, do yourself a favor and look up his situation. He's being crucified and forced to resign. Since when did there become a clause attached to the 1st ammendment that said "unless I disagree with you". It's all a matter of degrees, you'll defend someone up until what? A point where statements become too "outrageous"? Give me a break. Didn't Voltaire say something to the effect of "I may disagree with what you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it"? Nevermind he was French, so you must discount what he has to say.

Not that I like to brag or anything, but...

I could have told you the Lakers were going to melt down into a train wreck

I could have told you that Norm Chow would have been a good option to pursue

My wife and I got chosen to participate in a week long Neilsen TV survey. It has been pretty interesting so far. You get this diary where you are supposed to write down every television show you watch for each station. Something tells me that when Neilsen sees all the MTV reality shows we watch, they will never believe we are a couple in our late-twenties, early thirties. The funniest thing about it though is that we are getting paid for it. They just slipped some cash in the envelope when they sent the diaries. A five and five ones. I couldn't believe it. Too funny.

Marine general loses it

I have no idea what would make this guy say this stuff, but he did. I suspect it's more than just war, I think it's the dehumanizing role of the armed forces themselves (I have read some horrible stories about that). But stranger still are the themes of hyper-masculinity found in his comments. I wish I knew the context of this whole thing: whose panel was it? What question was he asked?
Marine general loses it

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Daunte Culpepper dissed my high school!

Dude, Daunte Culpepper just moved down my esteem-o-meter about 5 notches. A football player at my old high school was paralyzed recently while playing - and, well, I'll let the article tell the story...
Sports Illustrated - Culpepper's Shame

I was going to comment yesterday on the success of the elections in Iraq but I didn't. Cox and Forkum had a great editorial cartoon showing numerous outstretched fingers with the purple ink on them pointing in defiance at a bloody sword. I thought it said a lot and I was glad to see the elections go well. I will agree with a lot of conservative pundits that say democracy in the middle east makes a lot of these arab nations nervous. So you have the people in Iraq braving violence and death threats to make their voice heard. How does the insurgency respond to this?

By kidnapping an American hostage and holding him at gun point in front of the camera.



Its worked before and seems to rile the American public up. The problem is that their hostage is none other than Special Ops Cody



An action figure manufactured a few years ago. Anyway, I don't know how you all take this, but I'll tell you that it seems to reek of desperation from the insurgency. Apparently the Al Mujahedeen Brigade was going to behead Special Ops Cody... or maybe they were going to stick a firecracker up his ass! Hopefully this violence will trail off and the rebuilding of Iraq can really start to take off.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Horrifying...

A horrifying story about the "trials" for the Guantanamo Bay detainees.
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/01/31/opinion/courtwatch/main670659.shtml
These events are taking a toll on my liberal faith in government!

Funny as hell...

I hope this doesn't seem unpatriotic or something, but this is funny as hell. At least the terrorists have a sense of humor! :)
http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/02/01/iraq.hostage/index.html

More J-ville

This is a good page with several links about the criticism that Jacksonville is getting in regards to hosting the Super Bowl. It has a piece written by Matt Soergel who normally writes movie reviews

http://www.jacksonville.com/superbowl/packages/bash_201.shtml

I still can't believe the bashing Jacksonville has received. Amazing. To all these "journalists": Welcome to Jacksonville. Spend your money. Go Home.

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