April 30, 2006

The Sentinel, Reviewed... sort of

Take The Fugitive, swap Harrison Ford for Michael Douglas, nix the murdered wife bit, add Jack Bauer, a desperate housewife, a bombshell first lady and a few Russian terrorists (one with a strange, near Australian accent) and you have The Sentinel.

The movie was well made, though much of it seemed more formatted for television than film--plenty of great commercial break moments. The script was decent, the pace moved along just right, the plot wasn't horrible. All together, it was good entertainment. No real twists or turns, but not a complete waste of two hours.

I won't break down the plot, since that just takes too long, but I will mention that there were a few holes to fill once the credits began rolling. Such as, why did Russian terrorists want to kill the president? No motive was ever revealed. Mildly frustrating. The characters could also have used more development. The final "saving the president" scene is also terribly far fetched and confusing. (I know, I know...it's a movie.)

Though the movie was entertaining, I have to say that probably the most entertaining aspect of the experience wasn't even on the screen. Rather it was my desire to interject, "I'm Jack Bauer!" after every last scene with Kiefer Sutherland in it. He doesn't exactly save the universe like he does on tv each week, but gets really close.

It gets three stars from me (out of five).

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April 29, 2006

United States of Mexico?

Well, I should have seen this coming...

A Spanish language version of the national anthem was released Friday by a British music producer, Adam Kidron, who said he wanted to honor America's immigrants.

Well, let's see how the Brits or those Frenchies feel about their anthems sung in, oh, say, Arabic? Hey, he wanted to honor immigrants, so why not honor those immigrants in Europe?

(Hat tip: Drudge)

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April 27, 2006

Turkish Delight

This poor man is awaiting "what kind of penalty he will face" for chewing gum at an official ceremony.

Veysel Dalci, head of the local branch of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the Black Sea town of Fatsa, was charged with insulting Ataturk's memory during Sunday's ceremony marking Turkey's National Sovereignty Day.

These people are so easily insulted.

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State Senate endorses Monday's immigrant boycott

Oh, to live in California, home of diversity and tolerance. Oh, to have a legislature that cares about the needs of its people. Oh, to have a group of people who's needs are so clear, and a government so willing to aid.

They're kinda fuzzy on that whole "illegal-means-they's-not-legal-nor-are-the-immigrants-nor-are-they-citizens-so-why-are-you-helping-them" thing, though. I'd say vote 'em out of office, but I figure that's the minority opinion on the left coast.

From Wizbang

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When Birds of Prey Attack

Removing roadkill may save astronaut's lives, according to NASA. And no, even I couldn't make this one up.

The theory is that removing dead animals could cut down on the number of vultures looking for meals at the 140,000-acre center, part of which is a national wildlife refuge.

A vulture struck the fuel tank of space shuttle Discovery during last year's launch, but it didn't cause any major damage.

The headline of the story reads, "NASA: Removing Roadkill May Save Lives." I nodded, because in SoCal, drivers break when one rain droplet hits the windshield (no joke, this was my experience this morning). You can only imagine what roadkill does out here.

But, I was misled. We're not talking about saving your run-of-the-mill pedestrian life. We're talking about astronauts, here.

Now, they're not expecting drivers to stop and remove the remains themselves, are they? Because somehow I think that might pose far greater problems than just a few pesky vultures.

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April 26, 2006

In Every Season

What a sad way to end a Wednesday.

Muzzy over at Blogizdat is taking an indefinite sabbatical from blogging. :-(

I've had Muzzy on my blogroll for almost as long as I've had my blog, and though he leaves for the best reasons, that doesn't make it any less of a loss to the bloggers who've enjoyed his site for lo this many years.

You will be sorely missed, sir. If time allows, please don't be a stranger to this site.

Enjoy what seems to be a much needed break.


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Truth & Consequences

With a handful of Republicans having gone down in flames for little more than saying the wrong thing or of simply being accused of wrongdoing, it's nice to know there is at least a pretense of consequences for Cynthia McKinney's hitting a Capitol Hill policeman.

The officer involved in the incident, Paul McKenna, testified before the grand jury within the past week, the Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call said Tuesday. McKenna has said he asked McKinney three times to stop. After she refused, the officer reportedly placed a hand on her and she hit him.

No one should be above the law, and last I heard, it's still against the law to strike a policeman.

Tip: Lucianne

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Waking the Sleeping Giant?

There is a great Q&A article over at FrontPage Mag on the issue of Muslim immigration's effects on Europe.

FP: Tell us the impact that Muslim immigration is having on Europe.

Messerschmidt: We are seeing over the entire continent how the extreme groups of Islam are trying to impose their fundamentalist ideology, which has created awful results in the Middle East, to our part of the world.

We see it in the mosques, where the imams preach hate towards Western values; we've seen it in the many claims of respect for Islamic way of life, claims for the right to maintain halal-buggering and other right of special treatment. And we have seen it in the terror attacks and attempts which in many cases have been organized inside Europe.

Speaking about the impact on Europe, nobody can neglect the serious consequences to our economy and stability in society. It is well know that the Muslim immigrants are disproportional in representing crime records; that the hate towards Jews is increasing in Europe, because of these groups. The serious mistreatment of women, which we see in the Muslim world, is now also taking place in Europe. Therefore, we know that the lack of labor-participation, which is connected to these people living on welfare, is an economic threat to the stability of our societies. In many European countries we speak about the necessity of changing the welfare-payments, but the truth is that if we did not have the Muslim burden, many of these changes would not be required.

The rest is here.

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Hot Air

Since I know nobody cares as much about the internet as I do, there's a new news site out there called Hot Air. No, it's not all about Ted Kennedy, no! It's a new venture from internet insider Allahpundit, Michelle Malkin, and Bryan Preston.

The main feature is Vent, a videocast from Malkin herself. Plus, there's more news than you could shake a stick at. Well, more than here, anyways, especially when you see my name on every post.

And, to give you another taste of what you'll get, Your new national anthem...

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Oh, SNOW day

Now I get it: Snow Day.

Congrats to Tony, even though, you know, you're racist.

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April 25, 2006

Coming...Planet of The Apes

Spain has gone off its rocker as this article notes.

The Spanish Socialist Party will introduce a bill in the Congress of Deputies calling for "the immediate inclusion of (simians) in the category of persons, and that they be given the moral and legal protection that currently are only enjoyed by human beings." The PSOE's justification is that humans share 98.4% of our genes with chimpanzees, 97.7% with gorillas, and 96.4% with orangutans.

Maybe they're just desperate for a new cheap labor force. Or, perhaps the socialist party needs more voters; one ape, one vote.

Tip: LGF

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Scientists offer 10 basic questions to test your knowledge

Here's something for you brainy people who read this here blog: Why is the sky blue? Facts you should know.

And if that isn't enough, some guy came up with a bunch of defenses of why the answers they gave weren't all that useful.

BONUS: Come up with your own list, and we'll see how smart we all are. Or, just what should be on that stinking list.

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April 21, 2006

Turnin the page

The blog marm has just been notified that she's been officially accepted into the graduate program at her school of choice.

She's excited.

Posted by Portia at 05:50 PM | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Quite Contrary

MacStansbury is currently featuring a video that eerily captures my young life.

Always eager for argumentative dialogue, I've been told that one of my first arguments was with my mother.

Me: "Mom, what color is the sky?"

Mom: "Why, it's blue."

Me: "No, it isn't."

Mom: "Yes it is. What do you mean?"

Me: "Mom, it's sky blue." (Silly mom.)

Who knew I'd grow up to be a blogger?

UPDATE: And the legacy continues in the comments section.

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Why We Fight

It was reported on Wednesday in Baghdad that two teachers were beheaded in front of their students in a vicious terrorist attack.

Baghdad - Militants burst into two Baghdad primary schools and slit the throats of two teachers in front of their pupils, the Iraqi government said Wednesday.

"Two groups of terrorists have cut the throats of two teachers in front of their students in the Amna and Shahid Hamdi primary schools in the Shaab district of Baghdad," the government said in a national security statement.

Later that day, however, the Iraqi police denied the government's report.

But police in the neighborhood denied any attack occurred.

The contradictory accounts could not immediately be reconciled.

But the ministry later said the dead were a school guard and a teacher. It said the guard was stabbed to death by militants in front of students, while the teacher was shot outside the school as he arrived in the morning for classes.

So it seems two people were still murdered at a school, possibly still in front of young students.

Is there any doubt that the people we are fighting and the cause we are upholding of democracy and freedom in the Middle East is one of the, if not the, greatest and most worthy battles of our time?

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April 19, 2006

And now for the long awaited, annual pro-Florida post...

...because they do, occasionally, get it right. Occasionally.

A Florida university faces protests and veiled threats from Muslim students angered over the selection of Salman Rushdie as their graduation speaker.

Little Green Footballs reports:

Besides concerns based on Rushdie’s writing, students also expressed worries over safety.

”Who is to say there is not someone willing to try and kill him while inflicting harm to everyone else at the ceremony?" said NSU student Randy Rodriguez-Torres in an editorial published in this week’s Nova student newspaper.

"I mean, I'm not saying I would so such a thing, but Achmed over there...well, he really has a thing for silencing infidels."

It remains to be seen if the university has backbone and refuses to capitulate to bullies. Goodness knows if it were the reverse situation and Ward Churchill (who doesn't deserve that last name) was selected, and Christian conservatives protested (without threatening to kill anyone, of course), his honorarium would be increased.

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What's a Country to do?

Speaking of mass killings in the eastern regions of the world, it seems that Rwandan genocide survivors aren't too pleased with recent portrayals by Hollywood of the massacres.

The latest screen take on the genocide, and the only to be filmed on location, Michael Caton-Jones's "Shooting Dogs," had its world premiere at a stadium in Kigali last month.

It was filmed at the Ecole Technique Officielle, a school in the capital where Belgian U.N. troops abandoned more than 2,000 Tutsis to be slaughtered by machete-wielding killers.

One of the survivors is quoted as saying,

"My conclusion was that both movies are another Hollywood fiction geared at making money," said Jean Pierre Rucogoza, a 47-year-old university lecturer and genocide survivor who has watched "Sometimes in April" and "Hotel Rwanda."

Rucogoza lost 11 relatives in the killings. In an interview on the eve of the 12th anniversary of the genocide earlier this month, he said he believed the films partly represented the West's conscience rearing its head too late.

As much as this story makes me want to cry, as hard as it is to relate to the events that have occured on that side of the planet, and as inexcusable as our absence or neglect is, it's still a bit hard to stomach the entire Eastern world calling for our help but rebuking us when we do extend our hand. If help is asked for, should there be provisions upon the "good Samaritan," for lack of a better term?

According to media reports, America appears to be in a lose-lose situation. Either we choose not to get involved in foreign affairs because it's not in our interest or otherwise, or we do get involved and are then blamed for not doing enough or doing it all wrong. It's a little grating after a while. The city on a hill image is one beloved by our country and looked to by the world. But every once in a while, the near messianic hopes of our support can quickly become fodder for anti-American sentiment.

Reuters has the rest of the story from the perspective of those who lived through the genocide.

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It's Just a Cultural Thing

The more information is acquired about the Middle Eastern region of Iran, the more apparent our differences become. While liberals would have you believe that our troops are disgruntled little boys eager to get out of their Iraqi quagmire (none of which is true), absolutely nothing could compare to the horrors committed against young Iranian boys under the Ayatollah Khomeini's rule. Mike McClellan gives us just a glimpse, citing a recent article at the New Republic.

During the Iran-Iraq War, the Ayatollah Khomeini imported 500,000 small plastic keys from Taiwan. The trinkets were meant to be inspirational. After Iraq invaded in September 1980, it had quickly become clear that Iran's forces were no match for Saddam Hussein's professional, well-armed military. To compensate for their disadvantage, Khomeini sent Iranian children, some as young as twelve years old, to the front lines. There, they marched in formation across minefields toward the enemy, clearing a path with their bodies. Before every mission, one of the Taiwanese keys would be hung around each child's neck. It was supposed to open the gates to paradise for them.

And I'm sure they're only increasing nuclear capabilities for greater energy for the Iranian ghettos.

Read the rest here.

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April 18, 2006


LA Woman Hospitalized With Bubonic Plague

I suggest the only sane course of action: burning everything to the ground, and riots, and massive rolling blackouts. Not like that's any different from any other California summer.

Posted by Macabee at 11:24 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 17, 2006

Breaking Gossip!

I have it on good authority that Katie Holmes, is either, or has already given silent birth to TomKat Jr.

I don't see it on the news yet, but "I know a guy."

This has got to be the lowest point of my blogging career.

UPDATE: Who was right?

And irony of all ironies, just hours after Holmes and Cruise welcomed their little bundle of joy (and by welcomed, I mean won't speak to her for several days), Brooke Shields give birth to a baby girl, weighing and measuring almost identically to the Holmes child. Something tells me the happy couples won't be sending each other flowers.

Posted by Portia at 10:12 PM | Comments (4)

The Horror!

The DaVinci controversy continues. This time, it involves Hanks' hair. That's right. Read all about it here.

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War of Words

Buried within the news headlines this morning is a story that answers Rumsfeld's critics. Which is most likely why it was buried and not brought to the forefront.

AP reports that apparently not every general in the last eight years opposes Rummy's leadership. And now those men are coming to his defense.

Retired Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, who headed the Joint Chiefs from 2001 until last fall, denied Sunday that military leaders failed to speak up when they disagreed with Rumsfeld and President Bush.

"We gave him our best military advice and I think that's what we're obligated to do," Myers said on ABC's "This Week." "If we don't do that, we should be shot."

Retired Marine Lt. Gen. Michael DeLong, former deputy commander of the U.S. Central Command during the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, said Monday he suspected Rumsfeld's critics simply didn't like Rumsfeld's management style and personality.

"His management style is a tough management style," DeLong said on NBC's "Today" show. "He's tough to work with. He is a micromanager, but he's very effective. He's very competent but very dogmatic and tough when he deals with people."

More here.

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Don't Confuse Them with the Facts, Ben

Ben Stein on liberal Catholics who support illegal immigration:

I notice that the liberals within the Catholic Church are a big part of the organizing brains and muscle behind the huge illegal immigrant rallies in cities across the U.S. They are arguing that it is unkind and un-Christian to want to arrest people who have entered America illegally. They also fear prosecution if aiders and abettors are criminalized since they aid and abet illegal immigrants.

This is fine, and obviously a man does not sign away his First Amendment rights if he takes orders. But isn't this obviously Church interference in legal and political matters? How come this church involvement with the huge political issue of illegal immigration is fine and dandy -- but involvement by conservative members of the Catholic faith in trying to save the lives of the unborn, the sick, and the deformed is a dangerous intrusion over the "wall" between church and state? How can illegal immigration be considered a bigger moral issue than the killing of tens of millions of the unborn who are totally innocent of any crime? The hypocrisy of the left on this issue is staggering.

Read more of this thoughts, here at The American Spectator.

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April 15, 2006

Well...My phone is just cool lookin'...

It may not have crime deterent, but my phone still works!

This also happens to be Portia's most recent-favorite commercial...

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The Way, the Truth and the Life

Pope Benedict XVI presided over Good Friday mass at the Vatican last night. Read aloud during the service were 14 meditations and prayers written by Archbishop Angelo Comastri. They are beautiful in their simplicity and profundity.

Each title is an embedded link to the entire meditation for your further review.

Via Crucis--The Way of the Cross

Station One:

Jesus is Condemned to Death

We know this scene of condemnation all too well: we see it played out daily! But one question troubles our hearts: why does God allow himself to be condemned? Why does God, the Almighty, show himself clothed with weakness? Why does God let himself be attacked by pride, insolence and human arrogance? Why does God remain silent?

Station Two:

Jesus Takes Up His Cross

In Christ’s passion,
our evil recoiled before goodness,
our pride exploded with resentment
in the face of humility,
our depravity was outraged
by God’s radiant clarity.
And thus we became ... God’s cross!

Station Three:

Jesus Falls for the First Time

Jesus reminds us that sin is a heavy burden, sin lowers us and destroys us, sin punishes us and brings us evil: in a word, sin is evil!

Yet God still loves us and desires what is good for us; his love drives him to cry out to the deaf, to us, who are unwilling to hear: “Abandon sin, because it hurts you. It takes away your peace, your joy; it cuts you off from life, and dries up within you the very source of your freedom and dignity”.

Abandon it! Abandon it!


Lord, we have lost our sense of sin! Today a slick campaign of propaganda is spreading an inane apologia of evil, a senseless cult of Satan, a mindless desire for transgression, a dishonest and frivolous freedom, exalting impulsiveness, immorality and selfishness as if they were new heights of sophistication.

Station Four:

Jesus Meets His Mother

Mary is the Mother!
In her, womanhood is unalloyed,
and love is not poisoned by the waves of selfishness
that constrict and smother human hearts.

Her heart faithfully accompanies
the heart of her Son,
shares in his sufferings, carries his cross,
and itself feels the pain
of every wound inflicted on the body of her Son.

Station Five:

Jesus is helped by Simon the Cyrene to carry his Cross

Simon of Cyrene,
you are one of the little ones, the poor,
a nameless man from the countryside,
someone overlooked by the history books.
And yet you made history!

Lord Jesus,
rekindle within us the spark of humanity
that God placed in our hearts at the dawn of creation.
Free us from our decadent narcissism,
and we will find new joy in life
and burst into joyful song.

For the sake of brevity, I'll simply post the links to the remaining stations, highlighting just one or two more.

Station Six: Veronica Wipes the Face of Jesus

Station Seven: (Must be quoted)

Jesus Falls for the Second Time

Our arrogance, our violence, our injustices
all press down upon the body of Christ.
They weigh upon him ... and he falls a second time,
to show us the unbearable burden
of our sins.
But what is it that today, in particular,
strikes at Christ’s holy body?

Surely God is deeply pained
by the attack on the family.
Today we seem to be witnessing
a kind of anti-Genesis,
a counter-plan, a diabolical pride
aimed at eliminating the family.

There is a move to reinvent mankind,
to modify the very grammar of life
as planned and willed by God.

But, to take God’s place, without being God,
is insane arrogance,
a risky and dangerous venture.

Station Eight: Jesus Meets the Women of Jerusalem

Station Nine: Jesus Falls for the Third Time
Station Ten:

Jesus is Stripped of His Garments

Lord Jesus,
purity has everywhere fallen victim
to a calculated conspiracy of silence: an impure silence!
People have even come to believe
a complete lie:
that purity is somehow the enemy of love.
But the opposite is true, O Lord!
Purity is necessary
as a condition for love:
a love that is true, a love that is faithful.

Station Eleven: Jesus is Nailed to the Cross

Station Twelve: Jesus Dies on the Cross

Station Thirteen:

Jesus is Taken Down from the Cross and Given to His Mother

The Pietà! We almost seem
to feel compassion for God
and yet – once again –
it is God who feels compassion for us.

The Pietà! Our pain
is no longer hopeless,
nor will it ever be hopeless again,
for God has come to suffer with us.

And with God, can we ever be hopeless?

Station Fourteen: Jesus is Laid in the Tomb

I assure you these are all worthy reads, but to keep the post from taking over my entire page, I thought I'd try to keep it as short as possible.

Happy Easter, once again.

(Hat tip: Michael Savage. Yes, he was reading these on the air last night.)

Posted by Portia at 12:40 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 14, 2006

Have a Blessed Easter

It is the hope of everyone here at Portia Rediscovered that you all have a blessed and wonderful Good Friday and Easter weekend. If you are an observant Jew, we wish you God's best this Passover.

I'll leave you with one of my favorite lyrics about this incredibly significant day in the Christian faith and in history.

How Deep the Father's Love for Us

How Deep the Father's Love for Us
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
to make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the Chosen One
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the Man upon a cross
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice
call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

~Music/Lyrics by Stuart Townend

God bless your celebrations. Have a fantastic weekend!

Posted by Portia at 04:42 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 13, 2006

Our Culture of Death, Defined

There are certain bloggers that have a knack for ripping your heart out, throwing it on the floor and stomping on it. Phil Faranda at Red Guy in a Blue State is one such blogger. I'm not sure where he finds such heart wrenching stories, or if they find him. Either way, his latest post showcases this uncanny ability. Aptly named: Dead Babies.

I'd quote, but I'd rather you read it from him.

Posted by Portia at 11:30 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 12, 2006

Reflections on Christ's last weeks

Mike over at InedibleInk has a post on this, the Holy Week. In it, he questions the accuracy of the timeline of events leading to Christ's crucifixion.

I believe that Holy Week is not nearly long enough. At eight days, it’s better than most. Would that I had intentions to spend more than seven days in prayer. Rather, I think that more than eight days passed between the entry into Jerusalem and the ressurection.

Of course, that's not all he talks about in his post.

I had dinner last night with my best friend's family, all devout Catholics. Her mother told me they were going to the Last Supper on Thursday night and my friend's youngest sister, 11, said, "Is there going to be food there?" She was promptly slapped on the head by my friend.

And that's your Very Funny Holy Week Anecdote of the day. For more VFHW moments, stay tuned.

Posted by Portia at 08:08 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

More on House Ethics, or the lack thereof

The American Spectator reports,

House Democrat Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was aware of the story being developed against one of her members, Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-WV), and his questionable finances and the ensuing political troubles, yet did nothing to act on that knowledge.

The Wall Street Journal last week reported that Mollohan's income and assets grew from the mundane (no more than $565,000 in 2000) to the magnificent (about $6 million, give or take a couple hundred thou in 2004). As the weekend wore down, while House Speaker Dennis Hastert was calling for Mollohan to step aside as ranking member on the House Ethics Committee, the West Virginia Democrat's leadership was standing by him.

Interesting, no?

Read the rest here.

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Can't Beat 'Em? Join 'Em

Since, on a number of occasions, I've been accused of being her hack wannabe, I might as well start quoting her.


If only liberals were half as angry at the people who flew planes into our skyscrapers as they are with Tom DeLay, we might have two patriotic parties in this country.

Any Republicans who didn't ferociously defend Tom DeLay — which is to say, almost all Republicans in Congress, the president, and alleged conservative writers trying to impress the editorial board of The New York Times — better hope liberals never come after them. The only proven method for a Republican to avoid having his name turned into a liberal malediction is to be completely ineffective. You'll notice there's no "Stop Lamar Alexander Before It's Too Late" Web site.

Read the rest at her site.

Posted by Portia at 07:48 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

April 11, 2006

Bear Flag Carnival Extraordinaire

What might possibly be the most comprehensive and exhaustive blog roundup in blog history can be found at Miller's Time. And leaving any doubt that he's well, "thorough," he's even alphabetized the whole thing.

Truly incredible. Or insane. The jury's still out.

Either way, well done.

Posted by Portia at 08:29 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Would George Clooney, Penelope Cruz and Cameron Diaz lead you astray?

We've all heard of Bono's pet charity ONE, but now, you and you and you have the unique opportunity to sign a declaration on the ONE website. What does this declaration accomplish? Well, nothing really, but it makes people feel really really good, like they're saving the whales. Only this time, it's starving children all over the world. Your signature tells the webmaster and marketing folks that "Yes! I saw the banner on my AIM window and the snapping fingers of one Clooney, Pitt, Hanks, P.Diddy (or is it just Diddy now?), and Stephani (okay, so that's more than one) speaks to me!"

Oh, and I liked their nifty pseudo Lord of the Rings ring with the ONE etched in it. That made me want to sign the "declaration" even more.

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And you thought your cell phone bill was bad.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia - A Malaysian man said he nearly fainted when he recieved a $218 trillion phone bill and was ordered to pay up within 10 days or face prosecution, a newspaper reported Monday.

Even worse, the bill was for his late father's cell phone, which was disconnected after he passed away. (The rest of the story is here.)

Why are cellular phone companies the worst when it comes to billing? Almost two years ago I received a $1,200.00 bill in the mail for one month's worth of service. After we called the company and heard many, "oops" and "hmm...that's strange" remarks, the bill was reduced to less than one tenth of that amount. But it sure gave me a fright. I can only imagine this man's shock and horror at a $218 TRILLION dollar bill.

Posted by Portia at 08:19 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 10, 2006

It is, how you say?, weak.

How very French.

Jacques Chirac caves under pressure of further riots and scraps youth law.

Now every French teen has been given a free pass to believe that, "he is, therefore he works." I've talked with some of my students about this situation, and naturally they see no problem with the law as it is now; that is, until I ask, "You think you're entitled to a job for life simply because you exist? What have you done to deserve that?"

This utter nonsense reminds me of that line in Home Alone: "You're what the French call, 'les incompentant.'"

And that is what I think of that.

Posted by Portia at 10:18 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 08, 2006

House of Uncommons

Perusing the blogroll for The Bear Flag League, I came across what can only be described as an exceptionally brilliant blog. Gerard Van der Leun of American Digest, proposes an idea to keep congress inactive. For, he warns, it is not a useless and impotent congress we must fear, but rather a congress of accomplishment that poses the greatest threat to our way of life.

"Self," said I, "how can patriotic Americans of every race, color, creed, national origin, or self-assigned gender, make sure, make certain to a quantum level of granulation, that Congress does less than nothing; that all accomplishment in Congress moves from Zero into negative numbers?"

And then it came to me like a revelation, like a bush bursting into flame, like a pillar of fire lighting my way out of the wilderness of potential congressional action into the Promised Land of utter congressional paralysis: Clone Cynthia McKinney!

My God... the genius of that. The genius. The will to do that. Perfect, genuine, complete, crystalline, pure. And then I realized the Synthia® McKinney clones would be infinity squared more inconsequential than your average congressman. Because Synthias® would be able to hear themselves blather day after day without a scintilla of shame or self-consciousness. The Synthias® would not be just idiots... they would be cloned idiots, chips off the original blockhead, sports derived from the macromolecule of the primeval idiot. These would be clones who blathered from their ceaselessly heaving, eternally victimized hearts, who had oceans of blather to siphon up and spew, who were the parthogenetic children of the mother of all blather, who were filled with original spite... but they had the drool... the drool... to blather on whenever even so much as a Web-Cam was pointed vaguely in their direction. If I had ten of these clones our troubles with legislative creep and the creeps of the legislature would be over very quickly.

You must read the intro and conclusion to this fantastic scheme here. And don't forget to click on his "Main" link and browse. You'll thank me.

Posted by Portia at 01:58 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

RE: Last night's conversation

To: Portia Rediscoverd

I am in deep need of cherry-flavored ice cream.

Thank you for creating a need I didn't know I had.

I'll expect a prompt response, post haste.

Yours yada yada yada,


Posted by Macabee at 11:50 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 07, 2006

Padua Student Speaks Out

Kasey Ketterer, a student at the now famous Delaware school, gives her take on the events surrounding the video that highlighted students' rather poor handle on vocabulary and 20th century American events.

[The boys'] goal in creating this video? To make Padua students look stupid. And boy, did they succeed. It doesn't matter how many girls said "No" to signing the guys' petition (which, to clarify, was probably more than the one girl shown on the video). The fact that even one girl does not know what the word "suffrage" means astounds me....

So let it suffice to say that I am now quite embarrassed to be seen in my Padua uniform in public. The only reason I'm not ridiculously angry with the kids from Sallies is that they proved their point. The guys went out of their way to make us all look stupid, and while the actions of a few girls shouldn't represent the rest of us, the fact of that matter is, they do. A handful of girls have made the other roughly 580 of us appear much less intelligent than we actually are.

Read the rest here. It's worth it to hear what she has to say.

Posted by Portia at 06:32 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Vindication by an unlikely source

When the New York Times says that President Bush has the authority to declassify C.I.A. reports, you know the mainstream media's most recent battle against him might be over soon.

Yes, the NYT said that President Bush is fully justified in his alleged decision to release information via Libby regarding Iraq's desire to purchase uranium.

If Mr. Libby's account is accurate, it also involves Mr. Bush directly in the swirl of events surrounding the disclosure of the identity of an undercover C.I.A. officer.

The president has the legal power to declassify information, and Mr. Libby indicated in his testimony that the president's decision — which he said was conveyed through Mr. Cheney — gave him legal cover to pass on information contained in a National Intelligence Estimate.

A very thorough break down of the events leading up to yesterday's news of the president's involvement is here.

Posted by Portia at 06:18 AM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

April 06, 2006

Last Post's Post Script

This whole essay business makes me vividly recall situations in college in which I became quite skilled at making professors believe I was on their team, without ever compromising my own beliefs. It took me about three solid years to learn this craft, but once I mastered it, there was almost no greater joy than getting an A on a paper that made no absolute reference to anything.

It must be how Jerry Seinfeld felt, with his "show about nothing," that grossed him millions and millions of dollars. Unfortunately, mine was not as financially rewarding, but the process was just as fun, I suspect.

In my last semester of college, I had a left-wing, America hating, recently outed lesbian professor for some class, I don't remember which one. This woman was so abrasive, it was difficult not to argue with her in class. But I wanted to close out my college career well, so I decided not to out myself as the class conservative.

I wrote an essay about the "Pygmalion complex of our Western, patriarchal society." (The paper was ridiculous.) But, she wrote glowing comments on the paper, and I laughed and desperately wanted to say, "This paper said NOTHING! Absolutely nothing!" But that's what they like, and it got me my A.

All this to say, maybe this whole essay thing won't be so hard. Unless they check this blog. That could be bad.

Posted by Portia at 01:43 PM | Comments (3)

Honorable Mention? Not likely

It's no wonder why many don't apply to graduate school. The daunting task of preparing for one or more epic standardized tests is truly the beginning of an arduous journey. After completion of said tests, the application process begins. Writing numerous essays to numerous schools and cutting numerous checks of varying amounts then follows. Money that you might as well burn because you know you're only going to one school anyway.

But that's not all. Once the school application is in, then comes the financial leg of the trip. The tax information, the federal and state government forms, and then the scholarship applications. Now, that's where the process becomes a little overwhelming.

An applicant can fudge a little bit on the school essays. They're all basically cut from the same cloth. The scholarships, however, run the gamut of topics, and I'm getting sooo tired of writing about the same stuff I wrote about in high school: the death penalty, abortion, immigration. As I've mentioned before, the most original essay I've written recently answered questions regarding American involvement in the search for human rights in the Middle East.

The next one I have to answer, and tell me if I'm nuts in thinking the wording shows extreme bias:

How, if at all, would American society change if the current legal right to abortion is either severely restricted or eliminated?

I'll tell you how it would change! :)

(rolling eyes) Mere child's play. I'd love nothing more than to answer a question that actually tapped into the capacity of a thinking person.

I won't hold my breath.

Now all I've gotta do is think like Feinstein and I might win this thing.

UPDATE: Per my most recent attempt at a scholarship, I just read the winning essay from last year. Shock of all shocks, it was in support of physician-assisted suicide. I'm screwed.

Posted by Portia at 01:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Countdown to 1,500

It comes a time in every blog's life when it gets a buttload of comments.

Today is that day.

Somebody, in the next...er...2 days or so, will be lucky commenter 1,500. Will it be you?

(Yes, I realize the only reason I'm kept around is to provide blog-filler)

Posted by Macabee at 10:00 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Italians Thwart Terror Attack

Little Green Footballs reports that the Italian authorities have prevented the execution of a terrorist attack targeted at the subway system in Milan and a church in Bologna.

Mr Pisanu said the plot involved seven people. Three of these had been expelled from Italy, two had been arrested, one was under surveillance and one was at large. He did not say when the operations took place.

The Bologna basilica which was among the planned targets contains a 15-century fresco Muslim groups have interpreted as insulting to Islam. They believe it depicts Islam’s Prophet Muhammad in Hell being devoured by demons.

Italy has long been threatened with terrorist attacks. Cowardly fascists have threatened to destroy some of their (and the world's) most precious and valuable landmarks and monuments, such as the coliseum and Michaelangelo's David.

I was in Italy a little less than two years ago and was surprised to see guards standing outside of various buildings and Jewish temples with semi-automatic weapons. I'm happy to hear they're still taking threats very seriously, and in fact have the intelligence to stop them before they're ever carried out.

Posted by Portia at 08:04 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

This is Great

Michael Barone of RealClearPolitics has an article about media bias.

I remember a conversation I had with a broadcast news executive many years ago.

"Doesn't the fact that 90 percent of your people are Democrats affect your work product?" I asked.

"Oh, no, no," he said. "Our people are professional. They have standards of objectivity and professionalism, so that their own views don't affect the news."

"So what you're saying," I said, "is that your work product would be identical if 90 percent of your people were Republicans."

He quickly replied, "No, then it would be biased."

Read the rest here.

Hat tip: Independent Sources

Posted by Portia at 07:53 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 05, 2006

Shari'a law here in the U.S.?

LGF has posted a piece by Pittsburgh attorney David Kennedy Houck on Muslims challenging our U.S. Constitution.

First in Europe and now in the United States, Muslim groups have petitioned to establish enclaves in which they can uphold and enforce greater compliance to Islamic law. While the U.S. Constitution enshrines the right to religious freedom and the prohibition against a state religion, when it comes to the rights of religious enclaves to impose communal rules, the dividing line is more nebulous. Can U.S. enclaves, homeowner associations, and other groups enforce Islamic law?
Read the rest here.
Posted by Mutti at 08:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Iran's fearsome war machine on the rise again...

Well folks, it seems as if we're all doomed. Yes. Iran now has a fearsome "Stealth flying boat" in the works.

But, the best part of the article comes at the end...

Iran launched an arms development program during its 1980-88 war with Iraq to compensate for a U.S. weapons embargo. Since 1992, Iran has produced its own tanks, armored personnel carriers, missiles and a fighter plane.

"Ok, Ackmed. This is our only fighter plane. Don't blow up!"

(Hat tip: LGF)

Posted by Nasa Nerd at 01:19 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Saint Paris?

Not that I haven't already lost all faith in Hollywood, or Bollywood's, ability to produce quality work, but this just takes things to a whole new level.

Director taps Paris Hilton for role of Mother Theresa.

As funny as that can be, it's all but extremely offensive. Mother Theresa was one of the most amazing human beings to ever grace our planet, and Paris Hilton's essence is going to somehow capture that? Hmm. One woman spent her life selflessly serving lepers and the poorest of the poor in India. The other thinks Calcutta is a new knife set her daddy is going to get her.

For how many amazing actresses there are out there, this is inexcusable. And if the director were truly intelligent, he'd know that anything he puts the socialite in won't do well at the box office. It's in his best moral and financial interests to drop her.

Posted by Portia at 07:45 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

April 04, 2006

The Saga Continues

OC blogger and Bear Flag League member, The Great Satan, has some interesting news regarding the immigrant protest front.

Many have argued that Mexicans aren't assimilating to the culture as previous generations of immigrants have. I argue that it's quite the contrary. They have clearly displayed the type of behavior typical of the upcoming generation of Americans. They're very aware of their freedom and "rights and entitlements" here. How much more American can you get?

And apparently, immigrants to Mexico could never have gotten away with similar demonstrations. Gabe at The Great Satan explains why:

I've always harped on the fact that Mexico treats its own immigrants like crap, and its illegal ones even worse, now a study is out that explains just how badly.

For example, according to an official translation published by the Organization of American States, the Mexican constitution includes the following restrictions:

* Pursuant to Article 33, "Foreigners may not in any way participate in the political affairs of the country." This ban applies, among other things, to participation in demonstrations and the expression of opinions in public about domestic politics like those much in evidence in Los Angeles, New York and elsewhere in recent days.

So under Mexico's "constitution" the LA Protestors would have been in violation of the Mexican Constitution.

Read the rest here.

Posted by Portia at 10:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Women's Suffrage In Kuwait

Continuing the bad news from the Middle East, women in Kuwait vote for the first time, in democratic elections. IT'S ALL BUSH'S FAULT!!!

More from Sweetness & Light and Gateway Pundit.

Per chance, ya'll could teach our kids something?

Posted by Macabee at 06:30 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Update: UT Prof who espoused mass extermination explains himself

Prof Pianka is on the circuit to clarify any misunderstanding...

Posted by Mutti at 05:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Oh the Insanity

Does NPR make anyone else want to repeatedly smack their head up against a wall? I don't want to feel like the only one here.

By virtue of working in an office in which my fellow employees favor the station, I've been a listener, of late. It's not that we're listening to anything particularly left wing, but the talk show hosts' inability to form an opinion on anything absolutely makes me want to jump out of my skin.

The gist of the morning programs is:

"So, Bob, what do you think about this issue?"

"I'm not sure, Carol, what do you think?"

"Well, I don't know. I've been hesitant to form any certain opinion on the topic...let's go to some calls."

{Left wing caller weighs in.}

"Hmm, well, thanks for the call. Any thoughts Bob?"

"Not at this time. You?"

[Slamming head on my desk.]

Posted by Portia at 02:54 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 03, 2006

Why, Mr. Starbuck, Why?

My faith in the omni-benevolence of God was momentarily shaken last night upon hearing that....Starbucks no longer carries my favorite drink. Yes, the Cinnamon Dolce Latte was apparently "seasonal." Even now it stings to commit these words to writing.

When I got word of this from the college freshman barista, I exclaimed in shock, "But it's up there on your board! How could it be seasonal?" And the earth shattering words that followed echo in my mind even now: "I don't know." (He wasn't really helpful, or humorous, I found.) I asked him if he could, at the very least, just tell me what was in it that made the drink so, to quote Will Ferrell as James Lipton, "scrumtrulescent."

More simply put, I asked, "What was in it?" His reply: "Cinnamon Dolce." Well, gee.

It's no secret, my belief that whomever discovered that drink heard from God Himself. Now, as to the guy who made it seasonal....

So now I can't go to Starbucks at all. Not because it's part of the evil capitalistic conspiracy to bring down mom-and-pop shops, but just because it's too darn painful.

What a world.

Posted by Portia at 07:31 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Can't Help But Crack a Smile at This

In case you're having a bad case of the Mondays, here's a short video that should, at the very least, put a big smile on yer face. :)

Posted by Portia at 04:46 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tree Hugging, Lizard Experts are Hazardous to the Population

(Again, I'm not namecalling. He's hugging a tree in his bio picture.)

WorldNetDaily reports that Professor (and lizard expert) Eric R. Pianka of the University of Texas is deeply concerned about overpopulation. Addressing an audience of fellow scientists and science students, Pianka gave his solution:

"War and famine would not do, he explained. Instead, disease offered the most efficient and fastest way to kill the billions that must soon die if the population crisis is to be solved. Pianka then displayed a slide showing rows of human skulls, one of which had red lights flashing from its eye sockets. AIDS is not an efficient killer, he explained, because it is too slow. His favorite candidate for eliminating 90 percent of the world's population is airborne Ebola (Ebola reston), because it is both highly lethal and it kills in days, instead of years."

Oh, but that's not all. For his suggestion, he received a standing ovation and continued:

During a question-and-answer sessions, the audience laughed approvingly when Pianka offered the bird flu as another vehicle toward achieving his goal. They also chuckled when he suggested it was time to sterilize everyone on Earth.

After these remarks, he was not fired, reprimanded or asked if he'd be the first to volunteer in population reduction. (I credit my best friend for the last part of that sentence. She thought that as a scientist he should be the first to offer himself in the study.)

No, he was given an award. A plaque that named him the 2006 Distinguished Texas Scientist.

Read the rest of the eyebrow raising story here.

Posted by Portia at 02:04 PM | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Petition to end women's suffrage

From The News Journal:

In the end, Padua Academy girls got a lesson in vocabulary, signing documents, and the virtues of skepticism when it comes to Salesianum School boys with cameras and microphones.

Embarrassed administrators at both Wilmington Catholic high schools want to put behind them a month-old prank video showing Padua girls signing a Salesianum boy’s petition to end women’s suffrage.

But local Web logs in recent days have dredged up the video, which was censored from Salesianum’s morning TV report.

The video chronicles senior Will Albino’s effort to enlist Padua girls to sign his petition to revoke women’s voting rights.

Some of the giggling or grinning girls -- apparently misled -- seemed all-to-eager to place their names in the mike-wielding Albino’s spiral-bound notebook.

At one point, Albino explains: “We want to, like, eliminate any remaining threat of women’s suffrage.”

At another point, one girl declares upon signing: “Women’s suffrage is really bad.” The video also features graphics labeling girls variously as “smart chick” and “not a smart chick.”

A knockoff of a similar skit on Comedy Central’s “The Man Show,” the video was submitted for Salesianum’s morning newscast, but a teacher and school administrators wouldn’t allow it, said the Rev. Bill McCandless, the school’s principal.

McCandless faulted the boys for tongue-in-cheek tomfoolery at the expense of younger girls apparently caught off guard. “I just felt it really wasn’t fair, because they were going there with the purpose of tripping them up,” McCandless said.

The principal also said the amateur producers misled their teacher, went on Padua’s property without permission, and may have had a role in distributing the video online.

At Padua, administrators heard complaints from students about the boys’ questioning, said Sister Ann Michele Zwosta, the school’s principal.

Once the video surfaced on various Internet sites, alumni and parents began to complain, too, Sister Ann Michele said. Some of the girls in the video were embarrassed, she said, and many others weren’t laughing.

“The vast majority of students are furious,” she said.

They should be. And, they should learn what 'suffrage' means.

(Hat tip)

Posted by Macabee at 09:30 AM | Comments (15) | TrackBack

April 01, 2006

This is sooooo last week

Thousands in New York Protest Immigration Bill.

Get with it, people. Protests started forever ago.

Posted by Portia at 04:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack