Paul Smith Jr has a new home for his blog: www.gazizza.net. Click to go there now!
Friday, June 10, 2005
FOXSports.com - MLB- Urbina reportedly fought with teammates
www.delawareonline.com | The News Journal | Mascots to get their own Hall of Fame
So the Phillies gave up Polanco for a guy whose team was even more desperate to trade him? This deal looks worse and wore to me all the time
"I'm tired of packing and unpacking," Urbina said.
Who does he think he is, Andy Travis
Paul Smith Jr.com -- the home of Paul Smith Jr. on the web.
But the Phillie Phanatic was the best of them, because Raymond had the Chicken's attitude, without the adult edge, and both kids and adults laughed at his antics. Everybody, with the possible exception of Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda, loved him.
The new Phanatic has some adult edge. I was a game recently and the Phanatic was doing his "distract the pitcher frm the dugout act" and one of the distractions was to lift his shirt in a "flashing" manner.
Another time, a few years ago, he was dancing on the dugout between innings with a group of girls (I forget where they were from, but it was announced, so it was some sort of promo for a restaraunt or bar or something). During the entertainment, the Phanatic bent from the waist and one of the girls started spanking him. It seemed to be the girl's idea for the spanking, but the Phanatic didn't stop it.
Both are just disturbing.
Robert Novak: No to Hillary
In the post linked above I said that we need to teach Democrats economic laws. I should have said liberals. Unfortunately, the Democratic party has become so liberal, that I associate them with liberalism instinctively, overlooking such Republican liberals as Arlen, Specter, the awful Senators from Maine and Mike Castle, among others. There are so many of them, we've even developed a nickname for them: RINOs. (Republicans In Name Only)
I need to use my terms better.
Catholic World News : Religion poll: US, Mexico most fervent, France least
Back east, well-placed Democrats have agreed that the party's 2008 nomination is all wrapped up better than three years in advance. They say that the prize is Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's for the asking, and that she is sure to ask. But here on the left coast, I found surprising and substantial Democratic opposition to going with the former first lady.
As I made this analysis, the liberal Democratic functionary across the table from me shook his head in disagreement. He left his seat between courses, and then returned with this announcement: "There are eight Democrats in this room. I've taken a little poll, and none of them -- none -- are for Hillary for president. They think she is a loser."
Talking to some of them, I found concern that Hillary carries too much baggage from her turbulent marriage and her husband's presidency to do any better than John Kerry did last year. One female office holder was looking hard for another Southern moderate who could bite into the Confederacy as Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton had done.
Another woman office holder was hostile to a Clinton candidacy on a more personal basis. "Don't think that Hillary has the women's vote," she told me. "I will never forgive her for sticking with her husband after he humiliated her. It's something I can't get over."
As Novak says, "Eight Democrats, no matter how prominent, constitute a tiny sample." But it's still interesting. I'm glad the Republicans aren't taking her lightly. The media is definitely trying to portray her as a moderate, so she'll be perceived as more mainstream than she actually is. She'll be tough but beatable if the GOP handles it right.
Interestingly enough, despite Mexico's high level of religious fervor, Mexicans strongly objected to religious leaders trying to influence policy-making, with 77 percent opposed. Following a consistent trend, the United States was the most supportive of religious intervention in political affairs, with 37 percent responding that religious leaders should take part in government decision-making. "Our nation was founded on Judeo-Christian policies and religious leaders have an obligation to speak out on public policy, otherwise they're wimps,' said United States citizen David Black, a retiree from Osborne, Pennsylvania, who agreed to be interviewed after he was polled.
Thursday, June 09, 2005
JIMMY AKIN.ORG: Money See, Money Do?
Jimmy Akin discusses an interesting experiment that shows that monkeys can grasp economic laws.
Now if only we could get the Democrats to...
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
Embryonic Stem-Cell Research
The issue concerning stem-cell research certainly is in the media spotlight and has become very highly politicized. The problem is not with the research itself, but from whom one obtains the stem cells.
...stem-cell research may also use embryonic stem cells. Herein lies the controversy at hand. These stem cells are obtained by producing an embryo in vitro (i.e. in the laboratory) by fertilizing an ovum, allowing it to develop for a few days in a petri dish, and then extracting the cells, thereby killing the embryo. Such research using embryonic stem cells is immoral.
The Catholic Church has consistently asserted that a human being must be respected as a person from the first moment of conception, the very first instant of existence. Each person is made in the image and likeness of God, and thereby has an inherent dignity beyond the rest of creation.
Therefore, with embryonic stem-cell research, the subject matter is a person who is purposely created to be destroyed.
Keep in mind there is no real proof that embryonic stem-cell research will bring about any more benefit than non-embryonic stem-cell research. Dr. Ronald McKay, a stem-cell researcher at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke stated, "People need a fairy tale," commenting on why scientists have allowed society to believe wrongly that stem cells are likely to effectively treat Alzheimer’s disease. He added, "Maybe that’s unfair, but they need a story line that’s relatively simple to understand."
These pages are keepsakes - The Boston Globe - Boston.com - Baseball - Sports
"Dependence begets subservience and venality, suffocates the germ of virtue, and prepares fit tools for the designs of ambition." --Thomas Jefferson
"The higher type of man clings to virtue, the lower type of man clings to material comfort. The higher type of man cherishes justice, the lower type of man cherishes the hope of favors to be received." --Confucius
"The more one considers the matter, the clearer it becomes that redistribution is in effect far less a redistribution of free income from the richer to the poorer, as we imagined, than a redistribution of power from the individual to the State." --Bertrand de Jouvenel
"Little progress can be made by merely attempting to repress what is evil; our great hope lies in developing what is good." --Calvin Coolidge
"[I]n the past year I've found out anew that people still love my dad -- because he loved them. I pray that as America reflects on the passing of my dad, they will remember a man of integrity, conviction and good humor who changed America and the world for the better. He would modestly say the credit goes to others, but I believe the credit is his." --Michael Reagan
"At 448 pages, the proposed EU constitution is longer than the telephone directories in most big cities. It is more of a Socialist manifesto than a constitution. ... But the French voted against the EU constitution because it wasn't socialist enough. They feared the free-market ideas prevalent in Eastern Europe could threaten their 35-hour workweeks, six weeks of annual vacation, and heavy subsidies for agriculture and inefficient industries. ... It isn't often we owe the French a round of applause. They deserve a big hand now, even though they did the right thing for the wrong reasons." --Jack Kelly
"When the federal assault-weapons ban expired last September, its fans claimed that gun crimes and police killings would surge. Sarah Brady, one of the nation's leading gun-control advocates, warned, 'Our streets are going to be filled with AK-47s and Uzis.' Well, over eight months have gone by, and the only casualty has been gun-controllers' credibility. Letting the law expire only showed its uselessness." --John Lott, Jr.
"By now it should be clear to anyone who has followed this nomination that the fight here isn't over [John] Bolton's record, his temperament or his reading of the intelligence. Rather, it is a policy dispute in which a majority of Democrats, as well as a few Republicans, have chosen to hijack the nomination process to score some points against President Bush's foreign policy. In the case of Syria, they owe both Mr. Bolton and Mr. Bush an apology. Americans need to understand the threat Syria poses to our troops in Iraq and to our allies in the region. That understanding isn't helped when Senators put their partisan animus ahead of the national interest." --The Wall Street Journal
"Let's understand what mishandling means. Under the rules the Pentagon later instituted at Guantanamo, proper handling of the Koran means using two hands and wearing gloves when touching it. Which means that if any guard held the Koran with one hand or had neglected to put on gloves, this would be considered mishandling. On the scale of human crimes, where, say, 10 is the killing of 2,973 innocent people in one day and 0 is jaywalking, this ranks as perhaps a 0.01." --Charles Krauthammer
Jay Leno.... Deep Throat, the main source in the Watergate investigation, has been identified. Which would be big news if it was 1975. .... Deep Throat was the biggest mystery in Washington since how the Clintons stayed together. .... The Deep Throat incident was about the Watergate break in, when the Republicans broke into the Watergate hotel to see what the Democrats were up to. You see, back in those days the Democrats actually had ideas worth stealing. .... After 35 years of secrecy, John Kerry's college transcript from Yale was finally released today. Here's the amazing thing: he had worse grades than George Bush. Kerry got four "D"s his freshman year; his four-year grade point average was lower than President Bush's. Can you believe it? Bush is the smart one! How embarrassing is that?
Jonah Goldberg: The Roosevelt mystique
Going to a baseball game -- any baseball game -- without keeping score is incomprehensible to me. I'm always ready. When baseball season comes, I do not leave town without my cherished BBWAA scorebook. Hey, you never know when a baseball game will break out.
Why do I do this? If you have to ask, you wouldn't understand. Anyway, it's a good way to meet people. People will see me with my book in a minor league park and say, ''Are you a scout, or somethin'?" And I say, ''No, I'm just a baseball fan who likes to keep score."
Link via Baseball Primer
CNN.com - Stop! Are those live fish under your skirt? - Jun 8, 2005
Today liberals denounce conservative efforts to 'repeal' the New Deal. But in fact most of the New Deal was repealed a long time ago, much of it by FDR himself when it failed. And what remains is a mixed bunch. The reforms of the financial markets, speaking broadly, are worth keeping. There's no reason to nuke the Tennessee Valley Authority. But who misses that spectacular failure, the NRA? Who wants to see dry cleaners thrown in jail for not charging what federal bureaucrats claim is a fair price? And who wants to see millions of pigs slaughtered by the feds just to prop up pork prices?
If the measure of the New Deal is whether or not it boosted confidence in activist government, it was a huge success. If you judge it by whether or not it ended the Depression - it's intended purpose - the historical judgment is in: It was a miserable failure.
It did calm a nation that was, in the words of one publication at the time, wracked by "fear, bordering on panic, loss of faith in everything, our fellowmen, our institutions, private and government."
Calming such panic is worthwhile. But why should we be forever wedded to decisions made amid fear and panic?
That's the headline on this story as I write this entry. Do you think CNN could have possibly missed how dirty that headline is?
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
We hear the playback and it seems so long ago
Quote-a-palooza - Reagan Day Edition
80s Music Lyric quiz!
Link via the Corner
www.delawareonline.com - The News Journal - State slogans: Your suggestions
"Families must continue to be the foundation of our nation. Families -- not government programs -- are the best way to make sure our children are properly nurtured, our elderly are cared for, our cultural and spiritual heritages are perpetuated, our laws are observed and our values are preserved. Thus it is imperative that our government's programs, actions, officials and social welfare institutions never be allowed to jeopardize the family. We fear the government may be powerful enough to destroy our families; we know that it is not powerful enough to replace them. The New Republican Party must be committed to working always in the interest of the American family." --Ronald Reagan
"I...believe this blessed land was set apart in a very special way, a country created by men and women who came here not in search of gold, but in search of God. They would be free people, living under the law with faith in their Maker and their future. Sometimes it seems we've strayed from that noble beginning, from our conviction that standards of right and wrong do exist and must be lived up to." --Ronald Reagan
"If children prayed together, would they not understand what they have in common, and would this not, indeed, bring them closer, and is this not to be desired? So, I submit to you that those who claim to be fighting for tolerance on this issue may not be tolerant at all. ...The churches of America do not exist by the grace of the state; the churches of America are not mere citizens of the state. The churches of America exist apart; they have their own vantage point, their own authority. Religion is its own realm; it makes its own claims. We establish no religion in this country, nor will we ever. We command no worship. We mandate no belief. But we poison our society when we remove its theological underpinnings. We court corruption when we leave it bereft of belief. All are free to believe or not believe; all are free to practice a faith or not. But those who believe must be free to speak of and act on their belief, to apply moral teaching to public questions. I submit to you that the tolerant society is open to and encouraging of all religions. And this does not weaken us; it strengthens us. ... You know, if we look back through history to all those great civilizations, those great nations that rose up to even world dominance and then deteriorated, declined, and fell, we find they all had one thing in common. One of the significant forerunners of their fall was their turning away from their God. ... Without God, there is no virtue, because there's no prompting of the conscience. Without God, we're mired in the material, that flat world that tells us only what the senses perceive. Without God, there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure. If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under." --Ronald Reagan
"Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it." --Ronald Reagan
"You cannot stop the American people from feeling what they feel and showing it. From the crowds at Simi Valley to the hordes at the Capitol to the men and women who stopped and got out of their cars on Highway 101 to salute as Reagan came home -- that was America talking to America about who America is. ' We all experienced history together [last year]. We were all part of it. Didn't matter if you were watching at home sitting in a big brown La-Z-Boy or getting to salute the old man in the church as they brought him back down the aisle. Some were lonely because they weren't there; some were lonely because they were. ... But he brought us all together for one last time, wherever we were, didn't he?" --Peggy Noonan
"I won a nickname, the 'Great Communicator.' But I never thought it was my style or the words I used that made a difference: It was the content. I wasn't a great communicator, but I communicated great things, and they didn't spring full bloom from my brow, they came from the heart of a great nation -- from our experience, our wisdom and our belief in the principles that have guided us for two centuries. They called it the Reagan Revolution. Well, I'll accept that, but for me it always seemed like the Great Rediscovery -- a rediscovery of our values and our common sense." --Ronald Reagan
My personal favorite:
"There's No Place Like Home, So Stay There." Mike and Hope Tyler, Lewes
Other good ones:
"Our Chickens Can Beat Up Your Chickens." Tom Mackie, Princeton, N.J.
"What Happens In Smyrna ... Stays In Smyrna." Randy Rokosz, Middletown
"Delaware: Your Money's Already Here -- You Should be, Too" Paul VerNooy of Hockessin
"Slow Down Or You'll Miss It" Benjamin Lisenby of Wilmington
On a similar subject, I was talking to a guy from Texas this weekend, and he said "Oh yes, Delaware, I've driven through your state many times. One time I blinked and missed it."
Jay Nordlinger's Impromptus on National Review Online
We had two anniversaries important events in the never-ending battle for freedom. Due to being away for the weekend, I was unable to blog on them.
First, this past Sunday, was the anniversary of the death of Ronald Reagan
, who obtained freedom for more people than anyone else in history. Even when his closest advisors told him to back off, he never ceased pushing for freedom for those living in captivity in the Eastern bloc. Because of his efforts, millions now live in freedom.
Also, yesterday was the anniversary of the D-Day landing at Normandy, giving us the foothold on the European continent which allowed us to start the final march to Germany and the crushing of the Nazi regime.
As I was driving home yesterday, just before I got home I turned on XM Radio's
40s stations. They were replaying radio coverage of the invasion of Normandy. It was really interesting how many items they were reporting that weren't true. For example, the fact that this was possibly a test landing for a future full-scale invasion, or perhaps just a feint to draw German forces away from Calais where the main invasion would be taking place. All of this was based on quotes from ilitary and political leaders. Can you imagine the uproar about lying to the press that would have occurred had this happened with our current media? You don't have to, just go back and read some of the news coverage on Iraq.
Back then, the media understood: winning the war and minimizing American loss of life came first, even at the expense of lying to the media. It's a shame our modern media places themselves above their country and the value of human life. And they wonder why few respect them any more....
Jimmy Carter has been being himself again. He was in Ethiopia, observing elections, messing them up, and EU personnel on the scene were apoplectic. (A fascinating news item is here.) According to the EU, Carter undermined the election process “with his premature blessing.” Of course, he blessed Arafat’s election in the PA, too. Frankly, he blessed Arafat altogether.
That said, I should admit that, when the EU and Carter are at odds, I don’t know what to think — whom to root for.
Speaking of Carter: Douglas Brinkley has written an article on Reagan’s D-Day speech for U.S. News & World Report. (Brinkley wrote a book on the Carter post-presidency; Reagan defeated Carter in 1980, as you may recall.) May I cite for you the most extraordinary sentence in this article? Writes Brinkley, “Even though Reaganites tried to pretend for political purposes that the Vietnam War was a morally justified crusade, in their heads and hearts they knew better.”
Perhaps Mr. Brinkley is someone who ought not to write about Reagan, or Reaganites. It’s hard to think of a more “morally justified crusade” than Vietnam. The ghosts of millions — such as those drowned in the South China Sea — attest so.
Couple of letters?
Something’s bugging me. When it comes to any other minority group, the Left says, “White folk can’t disagree with them, because they have no capacity to understand what it’s like to be in that minority.” But when it comes to Cuban Americans, the Left feels free to ignore what they say about the Castro regime, because the Left knows better.
Why is that?
Don’t answer that.
And two about the Palestinian in Jordan who told me he wanted to meet an ex-president — because ex-presidents are nonexistent in the Middle East (outside Israel, of course).
Letter No. 2:
I had to chuckle at your friend’s remark concerning the lack of ex-presidents in the Middle East. It reminded me of what one of my favorite college teachers asked the class near the end of a discussion on a Friday. He queried, “What was George Washington’s greatest gift to the United States?” After hearing many answers from students, the cagy old professor smiled and said, “He quit. Have a nice weekend.”
Your Palestinian reminded me of something my dad told me. A couple of years ago, he played host to a young, thirtysomething official from Albania who was visiting Silicon Valley. Dad gave him a tour of the San Francisco area, including a jaunt out to the Central Valley to look at some of our agricultural areas. Of course, The Question came up when Dad asked his guest what was the most amazing thing he had seen so far in the U.S. The Albanian pointed to a used-car lot. Dad was a little confused. “Used cars?” he asked. “No,” his guest replied. “That!” Then Dad noticed that he was pointing to a U.S. flag flying above the lot, as is done at many businesses. The man had to explain that in Albania only government buildings flew the flag — and that this was the first time he had seen private citizens proud enough of their country to fly the flag on their own.
Another good Impromptus column.