December 22, 2004

Homer Nods

Paris insists no ransom paid

Even without reading it, I'm more likely to believe that this story is about a newly discovered addendum to The Iliad, or even about the magnificence of Orlando Bloom's heretofore unrecognized acting skills, than about the French Government telling the truth about the release of two French journalists. But that's just me.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:44 PM | Comments (3)

What Passes for News In December

Snow Falls From N.M. to Lower Great Lakes

Ohmigod! Even Drudge gets in on the non-news in his subtle, nuanced, all-caps manner:


I grew up just west of Chicago, and no, it wasn't in West Chicago. One Christmas break it did not get above zero for two weeks. Just imagine the faux-Armageddon that would have been if we'd had the Weather Channel back then.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:27 PM | Comments (4)

Not Exactly Scylla and Charybdis Now Is It?

Small Asteroid Passes Between Satellites and Earth

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:26 PM | Comments (0)

"Father Christmas, Give Us Some Money"

The Kinks covered this years ago:

A group of French teenagers have mugged Father Christmas, attempting to steal his sack of presents. The man dressed as Santa Claus was handing out sweets in the southern town of Ales when things turned nasty. One of the teenagers demanded extra sweets and, when the red-cloaked Santa refused, he and his friends started kicking and pummelling the man.

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:24 PM | Comments (0)

Doesn't James Taranto Call This the Roe Effect?

Fastest growth found in ‘red states'

Posted by Charles Austin at 05:05 PM | Comments (0)

And So This Is Christmas

And what have you done? Leave your anonymous -- I repeat, anonymous -- good deeds in the comments below!

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:55 PM | Comments (2)

Are You My Friend?

Leave your comments below, Mr. or Ms. scholarship winner.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:53 PM | Comments (0)

Just Because

Go Illinois!

I gotta get down to the Savvis Center and find myself a ticket tonight. And I thought it was going to be easy to get a Final Four ticket here in St. Louis in April. Well, not anymore.

Illinois #1, Ukraine's push for freedom, coincidence?

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:12 PM | Comments (0)

Fantasy Football

Oh yeah, another reason why blogging has been light...

I am in thirteen fantasy football leagues this year, which is way, way too many. Eleven of them are ESPN leagues, and I made the playoffs in eight of them. I am now in the finals of all eight of them as well. In one of the other leagues, I made the playoffs but havenow been eliminated. Que sera sera.
In the most important league, a keeper league which I have been part of now for thirteen years, we are down to the final four, and yes, I am still in it. I will spare you all the details... for now.

In related news, I think Terrell Owens may be the most talented, unsportsmanlike asshole in the NFL, but I'm still sorry to see him hurt. Especially because we now won't get to see Andy Reid in tights. Well, there's always next year. I hate to see anyone physically hurt. Which brings me to Robert Ferguson and DD. A brutal hit that was unnecessary, but I don't think DD was trying to paralyze him. Safeties do look to inflict punishment, that's a fact of the NFL. But punishment and injury are two different things. It is easy to forget how fast everything happens in the NFL.

Anyway, I get to watch the greatest show on turf here in St. Louis and the three ring circus that is Mike Martz. Lucky me.

Posted by Charles Austin at 04:09 PM | Comments (0)

The Hardest Working Blog in the Business?

Ten, no, eleven posts in two and one-half hours three days before Christmas. And all without the benefit of Will Collier filling in.

And I don't think going away made my blog better.


Posted by Charles Austin at 03:44 PM | Comments (1)

Zoom Zoom

Or another reason why blogging has been light lately ...


Heh, maybe this is worth an Instalanche!

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:40 PM | Comments (0)

Speaking of Advertising...

Or is it opening one's mouth and removing all doubt?

A portrait of President Bush using monkeys to form his image that was banished from a New York art show last week amid charges of censorship was projected on a giant billboard in Manhattan on Tuesday.

"Bush Monkeys," a small acrylic on canvas by Chris Savido, created the stir last week at the Chelsea Market public space, leading the market's managers to close down the 60-piece show.

Sixty pieces, why that's five times the number needed!

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:30 PM | Comments (0)

Not Content With Just Being a Loser?

Why not advertise!

Just a month before President Bush second inauguration, protesters on Tuesday offered plans for an anti-war rally, a counter-inaugural ball and a show of backs turned along Bush's parade route.

At least three groups of anti-Bush protesters are mobilizing around Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, when the theme of the $40 million official ceremony is "Celebrating Freedom, Honoring Service."

For some protesters, though, the unifying theme is, "Bush is illegitimate and corrupt," organizer Shahid Buttar said at a news conference.

This one works on so many levels it doesn't seem fair.

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:29 PM | Comments (0)


George W. Bush: "Are you ready Karl?"
Karl Rove: "Aha."
George W. Bush: "Andy?"
Andy Card: "Yeah."
George W. Bush: "John?"
John Snow: "Ok."
George W. Bush: "Alright fellas, let's go!"

And the man in the back said everyone attack and it turned into a MSM blitz:

Bush Plans a Media Blitz on Social Security

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:21 PM | Comments (1)

Who is John Galt?

A European Union court ruled Wednesday that Microsoft Corp. must immediately divulge some trade secrets to competitors and produce a version of its flagship Windows operating system stripped of the program that plays music and video.

The EU needs to become less competitive, don't you think? Gosh, wouldn't it be great in an Ayn Rand sort of way if Microsoft just decided to tell the EU to take a flying leap and make do without Microsoft products instead?

Who do you think would blink first?

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:17 PM | Comments (2)

Worst Kept Secrets

Or, why media is confusing a train's headlights for the light at the end of the tunnel:

Hillary ’08: Don’t Ask If—It’s a Go!

Like, duh.

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:13 PM | Comments (0)


Farmers will be paid for lost water

Somebody alert Dodd!

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:10 PM | Comments (0)


Streisand Comfortable in 'Fockers' Role

Mindless, obnoxious, rude, ill-informed, but rather vocal nonetheless.

Who knew?

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:08 PM | Comments (0)

Can You Imagine a Headline Like This One Year Ago?

Oil Prices Plummet Below $44 a Barrel

But ..., but ..., how are all the Bushitler cronies going to make their blood money if oil prices are falling? Personally, I look forward to the impending oil price decline driven deflation for 2005.

Posted by Charles Austin at 03:06 PM | Comments (0)

Poisoning the Well

Cementing into place a policy started by Al Gore four years ago, perhaps the new Democrat Party motto is: One person, one vote, ... recounts until we win.

Gee, if Christine Gregoire wins on the third recount, I can't wait for the frothing spittle-flecked retorts from the Angry Left should Dino Rossi start questioning the process and motives of all those engaged, drop hints about illicit votes and illegal voters, accuse his opponents of stealing and suppressing votes, and..., wait for it..., demand his first recount!

Posted by Charles Austin at 01:10 PM | Comments (1)

December 10, 2004

Why I Haven't Been Blogging Much

Reason #1: Work, family, and the holidays seem more important.

Reason #2: (The latest variation on a theme) -- Calling humanity a threat to the planet, Kenyan environmentalist Wangari Maathai urged democratic reform and an end to corporate greed after becoming the first African woman to collect the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday. And if that's not enough, there's always her crackpot theories about AIDS that will receive even more positive attention now that she's a certified, bona fide, on the other side Nobel Peace Prize winner. Who knew that the Nobel Peace Prize could be further degraded than by previously awarding it Yasser Arafat and Jimmy Carter?

The fact that someone so ignorant of the basic tenets of reality and so chock full of nonsense is taken seriously and feted by the intelligentsia, Big Media, and politicians of all stripes is prfoundly distressing. When Maathai is ridiculed publicly by more than just a couple of bloggers for being an idiot, Cliff Notes Marxist, more deserving of being tarred and feathered for suggesting that "humanity" is a threat to the planet than being given a check for $1,400,000 to spread her particular brand of anti-human lunacy, then maybe I'll begin to believe once more that there is hope for mankind.

I'll be generous and give us a 50-50 chance right now. A good first step would be disestablishing the Nobel Peace Prize and awarding a Nobel Freedom Prize instead. I've always believed freedom is more important than peace and if you honestly seek out the root causes of so many of our most serious geopolitical problems today, valuing peace over freedom seems to be at the heart of them -- starting with Iraq.

See, I could rant like this every day about something, but what's the point?

Posted by Charles Austin at 02:36 PM | Comments (4)

December 02, 2004

Has Karl Rove Selected Rudy Guiliani for 2008?

Kerik Named to Lead Homeland Security

Posted by Charles Austin at 06:10 PM | Comments (3)

While Media Eyes Roll...

Americans' Role Eyed in U.N. Oil Scandal

That would be Americans as in whom exactly?

Former American fugitive Marc Rich was a middleman for several of Iraq's suspect oil deals in February 2001, just one month after his pardon from President Clinton, according to oil industry shipping records obtained by ABC News.

I'm shocked, shocked, to find gambling going on here. But despite his pardon:

Rich is still living in Switzerland and unavailable for comment.

I guess those pardons can't be for future crimes. so, what can be done about this? Hmm, I know: Hillary in 2008!

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:59 PM | Comments (0)

Is That All?

Drudge shouts:


Well, duh. I myself take two medications daily, Allopurinol to keep my uric acid levels down (I suffer from gout) and Pravachol to keep my cholesterol down (currently on a test run). Gee, does anyone out there know anyone over 40 who isn't taking something daily? Last I heard, birth control pills still required a prescription, so that alone has to be worth 25% of the population. Given that supposedly 28,000,000 Americans were taking Vioxx, this 40% figure seems to be just a little low.

But there are some other interesting facts in this article as well:

The annual report on Americans' health found that just over 44 percent of all Americans take at least one prescription drug, and 16.5 percent take at least three.

Gee Matt, if your going to try and be sensational, at least take advanatge of the total number.

The study also found that spending on health climbed 9.3 percent in 2002 to $1.6 trillion.

But the problem with medical coverage in this country is an insurance problem, right?

Prescription drugs, which make up about one-tenth of the total medical bill, were the fastest growing expenditure. The price of drugs rose 5 percent, but wider use of medicines pushed total expenditures up 15.3 percent in 2002. Drug expenditures have risen at least 15 percent every year since 1998.

And you thought Social Security would be what bankrupts America, didn't you? A growth rate of 15% means that drug expeditures are doubling every five years. Woo Hoo!

The report said prescription drug use was increasing among people of all ages, and use increases with age.

Like, duh.

Nearly half of all women were taking prescription drugs - 49 percent - compared to 39 percent of men. Usage peaked at 84 percent for people aged 65 and over, with the top rate at 89 percent for black women over 65. Even for people under age 18, however, nearly one-fourth - 24.1 percent - were taking at least one prescription medication. The rate rose to 34.7 percent between age 18 and 44; for those ages 45 to 64, it was 62.1 percent.

Better life through chemistry. And no, that's not sarcasm. So let's not kill the goose that's laying the golden eggs, ok?

Posted by Charles Austin at 12:54 PM | Comments (2)

December 01, 2004


Just, damn!

Not even Ed Hightower could stop Illinois tonight. So, Dickie V., still think Illinois is the 15th best team in the country? Although the highlight of the night, for me at least, had to be ESPN's halftime feature ranking the best guards in the ACC, when two of their best were down by 21 at the half.


Posted by Charles Austin at 09:28 PM | Comments (1)