Tuesday, October 07, 2008

A stuck clock moment

Even Saturday Night Live gets it right sometimes:

Now I hear George Soros and Herb and Marion Sandler are not happy with the skit, so SNL has pulled the video from the official SNL site.

Supposedly, the skit now does not meet SNL standards, and they are going to "edit" the skit.

Wait a minute, I thought it was Saturday Night Live? Did I miss something? Editing a live skit after the fact?

I guess the new Lorne Michaels is George Orwell.

Friday, September 12, 2008

It's too bad Whoopi Goldberg did have a dad like this

Today on The View, Whoopi Goldberg showed an incredible ignorance of the United States Constitution. It made me think of this scene from the movie The Jerk:

When it comes to the Constitution, Whoopi does not know the difference between ... well, you know.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

The best political speech in history

So today is September 11th. I remember back on that fateful day, September 11th 2001, what I did once I returned home. As I watched the events of the day unfold, I recalled Ronald Reagan's most famous speech, given in 1964 in support of the candidacy of Barry Goldwater.

Specifically, I recalled the phrase "You and I have a rendezvous with destiny", and a few other choice lines, such as "We are at war with the most dangerous enemy that has ever faced mankind in his long climb from the swamp to the stars", "You and I have the courage to say to our enemies, "There is a price we will not pay." There is a point beyond which they must not advance." and of course, "You and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We will preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on Earth, or we will sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness."

When I got home, I searched "rendezvous with destiny" on the Internet, and found the speech on the web site for the Reagan Presidential Library. While parts of the speech may be specific to the Goldwater-Johnson Presidential election, the speech itself is truly timeless. It is a speech about the freedom of man, the threats to that freedom, and what free men must do to preserve that freedom.

So without further adoo, here is Ronald Reagan's speech, "A Time for Choosing" (a.k.a., "Rendezvous with Destiny"):

And a link to the site of the text of that speech: A Time for Choosing

Monday, September 01, 2008


I am hearing a lot of comments in the media about the experience (or lack thereof) of the Republican VP candidate, Governor Sarah Palin.

Here are some interesting facts:

Barack Obama was a Community Organizer for 3 years, and later spent six months running a voter registration drive.
Sarah Palin was a City Council Member for 4 years.

Barack Obama was an Illinois State Senator for 7 years.
Sarah Palin was a mayor for 6 years.

If elected President, upon inauguration, Barack Obama will have been a U.S. Senator for 4 years.
If elected Vice President, upon inauguration, Sarah Palin will have been Alaska's Governor for 2 years.

In addition to being a Mayor and a Governor, Palin was Chair of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission for a year (basically a sub- cabinet position, under Alaska's Department of Administration).

This latter position is the most interesting, and Palin's experience there reads like a Grisham novel.

So let's assume for a moment, serving on a City Council provides similar experience to being a community organizer (low-level public service experience). And let's assume being a Mayor provides similar experiences to being a State Legislator (mid-level public service experience). Finally, let's assume running a 25 member state commission, and later being a Governor provide similar experiences as that of a U.S. Senator (high-level public service experience).

I believe many will say being a Mayor is far more challenging, and therefore far more valuable experience than being a state legislator. Likewise, I believe many will say being a Governor is far more challenging, and therefore far more valuable experience than being a U.S. Senator. But for now, let's call these experiences equal.

If so, that basically gives Obama one year of advantage at both the middle and high levels of public service.

So I find the argument that Palin is too inexperienced to be a heartbeat away from the Presidency weak compared to Obama being in the Presidency.

And like I said, her experience on the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission read like a Grisham novel. Check out the link below.


Palin explains her actions in Ruedrich case

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Who else can stand up for liberty in the world?

A rhetorical question, no doubt, but one which had to be asked.

Who else can stand up for liberty in the world?

Well, who?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

The Empire Strikes Back

Playing the part of Darth Vader is Dmitri Medvedev:

And of course, Vladimir Putin is Emperor Palpatine:

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Random House commits an "Honor Killing"

In a world where all to often people love to establish moral equivalence between western and third-world cultures, permit me to add one.

Random House's decision to kill Sherry Jones' new novel "The Jewel of Medina", about Muhammad's wife A'isha is the literary moral equivalent of an Honor Killing.

University of Texas' history professor Denise Spellberg, according to Random House's Jane Garrett, advised strongly against publishing. I cannot help but wonder what Dr. Spellberg teaches about Islam in her classes. Does she teach it is includes a significant element of unstable, easy to anger, medieval, barbaric, and terroristic sects, which are so influential, as to preclude the entirety of Islam from being subject to popular fiction, avant-garde art, political cartoons, or comic routine, unlike every other other major religion and culture, which often are the subject of critical or tasteless speech or expression.

I think Dr. Spellberg, based on her comments, strongly believes Islam, due to its extremist component, is not compatible with the secular, post-Enlightenment, western world. I just wonder if she teaches this in her classes.


You Still Can't Write About Muhammad

Free Speech Jilted by Muhammad Romance Novel 'Warpath'

And some worthy background reading:

Victor Davis Hanson: Traitors to the Enlightenment

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Ideal Margarita (A Basic Recipe)

Memorial day is almost here, which means Margarita season is upon us.

There are as many Margarita recipes as there are opinions, it seems. However, I think the following works pretty well. It is a variation of the original Jimmy Buffet Perfect Margarita from the liner notes of his "Boats, Beaches, Bars & Ballads" box set.

2-1/2 oz. Sauza Hornitos Reposado Tequila
1-1/2 oz. Rose's Lime Juice
3/4 oz. Cointreau

Mix and pour over the rocks, or blend with ice.

I came up with this by making some substitutions to the original recipe. First, I only keep one type of tequila, so I just added an additional half-ounce of my regular tequila instead of the white tequila. I did not have any fresh lime at the time, so I added an additional half-ounce of Rose's. And I did not have any orange Curacao liqueur, so I increased the Cointreau by a quarter-ounce.

I found the solution worked, and could be used any time. Fresh lime is nice, but its not always around, and can be especially limiting if friends drop by. However, this recipe scales easily, and works well both on the rocks and in the blender.

Also, just as Jimmy was very brand-specific in his original recipe, so am I. However, my brand preferences differ. Hornitos Reposado is the best gold tequila, not over distilled like Patron (this is tequila, not vodka), and not destined to give you a headache like Jose Cuervo Especial, and personally, its better tasting than 1800 Reposado.

As for triple-sec, I prefer Cointreau. Most stuff liquor sold in stores today claiming to be triple-sec is not, so now we have real "orange liqueur", and rock-gut "triple-sec". And Cointreau is just better than Grand Marnier, the flavor of which reminds me of St. Joseph baby aspirin.

Now, assuming I have the time to get all of the ingredients, I will add that splash of orange Curacao liqueur. But like I said, I have my brand preferences. Bols liqueurs in the U.S. are cheap, mass-produced stuff just like the typical triple-secs. One high-quality orange Curacao liqueur I have found is Marie Brizard Orange Curacao which is made with French cognac as the alcohol base.

This recipe is sweeter than one using only fresh lime juice, so it is good to balance the sweet and sour by trading off fresh lime juice and Rose's. However, the sweetness and strength of this recipe make it perfect as a sipping drink, as it still has plenty of flavor as the ice melts.

One last trick. If you like Margaritas on the rocks, try using a blender with a few ice cubes added to mix a pitcher of these. The result is a super-chilled drink which will will not melt the ice cubes so quickly when poured into a glass. The effect is similar to using a cocktail shaker for a single drink.