The Locker Room

August 31, 2006

Crossing the line with the Presidency....

Posted by Michael Moore at 10:35 PM

Today there was this article on Drudge about this movie made by some Brits, and President Bush gets killed in 2007.  Now if they were in this nation these ole boys would come after you.  After all it doesn't matter who is in the Oval Office (Democrat or Republican) the presidency is greater than one person, and a lot of national pride rests with the person who holds the title of the President of the United States (Even if Bill and Hillary did share the title!)

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the real question

Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 9:20 PM

Tower of Power, the musical embodiment of hip, asks the ultimate question? 

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Raleigh's Mayor Meeker takes anti-gun madness up a notch

Posted by Jon Sanders at 9:02 PM

I meant to post about this earlier. This morning on WPTF, I heard Mayor Meeker talking about fear in Raleigh since a woman was abducted from a parking garage in downtown. Hosts Rick and Donna Martinez mentioned that local convenience stores were selling out of alert whistles and pepper spray and other personal security devices.

Meeker said that whistles and other alert devices were fine, but that he would prefer people not buy pepper spray and other "weapons." Only a far-gone "liberal" would think that calling something a weapon suffices as a slam-dunk argument against it.

Women have already figured out that the Second Amendment is for them, too — and that a gun is a great equalizer against a bigger, stronger male predator. "Liberals" reflexively react against such an idea. But before this morning I'd never heard one get upset over the idea of pepper-packin' mamas.

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Re: getting hip

Posted by Dr. Roy Cordato at 8:55 PM

Actually John says one thing that definitively proves his lack of hip. He claims that to use the word hip is itself not hip. But in fact the hippness embedded in the word hip transcends hippness of the moment. Those who are truly hip understand the eternal hippness that is contained in the word hip itself. Those who believe that to use the word hip at a particular point in time is not hip because of the hippness standards that may exist in the fads of the moment do not really understand the ultimate hippness in the nature of the word. The bottom line is that truly hip people understand that it is always hip to use the word hip regardless of the pseudo standards of hippness during any time period or the hippness standards of any particular generation. You dig?

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Re: Right but hysterical

Posted by Jon Sanders at 4:47 PM

Jon H., concerning Ruth Sheehan's firing-in-retreat column on the cab driver, her attitude toward bloggers' "methods" are like Inspector Lestrade's toward Sherlock Holmes'. Q.v., this exchange halfway through "The Adventure of the Norwood Builder":

[The telegram read:] "important fresh evidence to hand. Mcfarlane's guilt definitely Established. Advise you to abandon case. -- Lestrade."

"This sounds serious," said I.

"It is Lestrade's little cock-a-doodle of victory," Holmes answered, with a bitter smile. "And yet it may be premature to abandon the case. After all, important fresh evidence is a two-edged thing, and may possibly cut in a very different direction to that which Lestrade imagines." ...

Within the gates Lestrade met us, his face flushed with victory, his manner grossly triumphant.

"Well, Mr. Holmes, have you proved us to be wrong yet? Have you found your tramp?" he cried.

"I have formed no conclusion whatever," my companion answered.

"But we formed ours yesterday, and now it proves to be correct; so you must acknowledge that we have been a little in front of you this time, Mr. Holmes."

But after Holmes had solved the case, Lestrade's attitude was quite different. He told Holmes, "this is the brightest thing that you have done yet, though it is a mystery to me how you did it. You have saved an innocent man's life, and you have prevented a very grave scandal, which would have ruined my reputation in the Force."

He didn't say,

this is the brightest thing that you have done yet, though it is a mystery to me how you did it, you suspicious paranoiac with your kooky methods. You and your dark-hansom-cab-infested streets worldview have saved an innocent man's life, and you have prevented a very grave scandal.

But that's because Lestrade had only a "cock-a-doodle of victory." He apparently was circumspect enough in being proven wrong not also to have a cock-a-doodle of mea culpa.

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Getting hip in Squaresville

Posted by Dr. Karen Y. Palasek at 4:41 PM

John: RE: your Daily Journal. Get a satellite radio. You can then indulge in all of your extremely square entertainment tastes, while utilizing an indisputably hip technology.

A look at the programming guide of one satellite service reveals that geeky sells, by the way. The 'creative classes' appear to be contributing very little of what this market is providing to its actual, paying customers.

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What uninsured crisis?

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 4:04 PM

A slide from the Duke University Center for Health Policy unintentionally offers some perspective on this week's Census report that 15.9% of Americans are without health insurance, the highest level since 1998 when 16.3% were uninsured. Nina Owcharenko thinks the best way to deal with the problem is to eliminate barriers in the individual market.


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Right but hysterical

Posted by Jon Ham at 3:22 PM

News & Observer columnist Ruth Sheehan just couldn't resist a snarky dig today when she had to admit that bloggers may have been right about something. Her column was about the acquittal of cab driver Moezeldin Elmostafa, who was suspiciously arrested on a years-old warrant in Durham. This is the same cabbie who provided Duke lacrosse player Reade Seligmann with a seemingly iron-clad alibi. Local bloggers smelled a rat and they thought its name was Nifong. Here's Sheehan's "apology" to bloggers:

A few weeks ago, I used speculation about Elmo's treatment (he's being harassed! his reputation tarnished!) to poke a little fun at the bloggers in the black-helicopter-infested skies of cyberspace.

But darn if this isn't another case where the bloggers, with all their paranoid conspiracy theories, just might be right, however hysterical their tone.

Black-helicopter-infested skies of cyberspace? Paranoid conspiracy theories? Hysterical? How many cliches and stereotypes can you fit in two paragraphs? Perhaps Sheehan is still smarting from the blog flog she experienced after a couple of columns, one of them on March 27 that seemingly convicted the entire team ("Team's silence is sickening"):

Members of the Duke men's lacrosse team: You know.

We know you know.

Whatever happened in the bathroom at the stripper party gone terribly terribly bad, you know who was involved. Every one of you does.

Talk about hysterical tones.

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Top GOP senator wants regulation of legal defense funds

Posted by Mitch Kokai at 2:48 PM

The following is the text of a letter Senate Republican Leader Phil Berger submitted to top state election officials today. 

Mr. Larry Leake, Chairman
Mr. Gary O. Bartlett, Executive Director
State Board of Elections
506 N. Harrington Street
Raleigh, NC 27601
                                    RE: Legal Defense Funds

            I am writing to request that you clarify the procedures used in enforcing Section 163-278.36 of the General Statutes.  Specifically, I am interested in your definition of “support fund” and its applicability to legal defense funds.
            Section 163-278.36 of the North Carolina General Statutes requires that all donations to a “support” or “booster” fund of a candidate or office holder used to support his duties and actions while in office be reported as campaign contributions and expenditures.
            Legal defense funds are established by officeholders with the general intent that the money placed into the fund be used to cover the costs of litigation. These costs are typically incurred while the official is acting in his elected capacity.  Tradition is that these funds are unregulated and unreported. However, the code clearly states that support funds, which can be interpreted to mean contributions to legal defense funds, must be reported in the same manner as campaign reports
            As it is required by statute, legal defense funds should be held to the same reporting standards as all other campaign accounts.
            I understand that you had earlier requested clarification from the General Assembly on this issue and are awaiting a response; in light of the current situation, I request that you act under current and existing statutory authority.
                                                                        Senator Phil Berger
                                                                        26th District

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Democrats who say they're "fiscal conservatives"

Posted by George Leef at 2:01 PM

Cato's David Boaz takes a scalpel to the idea that many Democrats (particularly Ned Lamont) are trying to push that they are "fiscal conservatives." While a lot of Republicans have shown that they are quite fond of the mega-state and are happy to see it grow, the Democrats are almost uniformly worse. You can read what Boaz has to say here.

The crucial point to keep in mind is this: The more government spends, the more it impedes the ability of individuals and voluntary organizations (both non-profit and for-profit) to accomplish their goals. That's the political trade-off. I guess that most politicians would agree, if pressed on this, that there is some point at which government would be too big and that things would be better if it shrank and people were allowed more freedom to spend their money. Unfortunately, most of them evidently believe that we are not yet close that that point and further growth of the government is desirable.

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Incompetence, Bureaucracy, or Stalling?

Posted by Dr. Terry Stoops at 1:26 PM

Today, DPI announced that ABC testing results for grades K-8 will not be released on October 5, as originally planned. Instead, scores will be released on or before November 15. High school results will still be released on October 5.

DPI says that they are having problems securing vendors to analyze the new mathematics tests, analyses that have already been delayed (scroll to bottom) for months.

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Re: Coffee with John Edwards

Posted by George Leef at 12:13 AM

Edwards only says things that he believe will snag voters, so he must have concluded that his "we must invest more in our research universities" line will have some traction for him. The trouble is that when he uses the word "invest," he means that government should spend more money on our enormous higher ed establishment, such as increasing subsidies ("financial aid") for students. But that isn't an "investment." One economist with the New York Fed argues that the more governments subsidize the cost of higher ed, the less effort students tend to put into it. That paper is available here.

I don't know if anyone keeps track of this, but my hunch is that the private sector is investing more than ever in higher education by contracting with professors to do research and write books, papers, and articles. Such contract work has the great benefit of having to pass the test of the market. Even if a leftist foundation contracts for research and writing from a professor, it insists on getting value for the money.

When Edwards complains that "we" aren't investing like we used to in our universities, I think he just means that government subsidies have gone down. Total university budgets, however, have not gone down, due to the infusion of funds from people who parted with their money voluntarily. If some good reporters figure out Edwards' trick here, he'll need to come up with a new sales pitch.

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Kofi Annan boed

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 12:07 AM

The roundtable on News & Notes with Ed Gordon missed it's token moderate yesterday. So when they talked about Kofi Annan getting booed in Beirut, they took it as evidence that the UN is seen as a pawn of the US throughout the region. Even though Annan was in a southern Beirut "Hezbollah stronghold," nobody questioned the crowd's spontaneity. I usually like the show and it has the best musical breaks on NPR, but misrepresenting facts is never a good thing

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An idea for Friday's music topic II

Posted by Paul Chesser at 11:34 AM

How has your favorite business establishment been threatened, or how have you threatened a business establishment, over its decision to honor a famous musician?

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Coffee with John Edwards

Posted by Shannon Blosser at 11:12 AM

Today former Senator and Vice President candidate John Edwards held a coffee gab session with students and others in the John Lindsay Morehead, II Lounge in Graham Memorial on the campus of UNC-Chapel Hill. A crowd of about 150 turned out to gather Edwards’ thoughts from the speech.

Some thoughts from the time that I attended the informal question and answer affair:

•    Edwards attempted to make the case that higher education is not funded at levels as it once had in the past. He attempted this line when talking about cuts to the Pell Grant program. Edwards said, “We no longer invest in our research universities as we once did. We need to invest more, not less.” I’m assuming as Edwards has traveled across the nation campaigning for the 2008 Democratic nomination for president, he forgot to read that the University of North Carolina system received a large funding increase, taking its appropriation over $2.2 billion.
•    Edwards talked about how there had not been a national focus on poverty since Robert Kennedy campaigned for president in 1968. “Some of the things done then we’re helpful. Some didn’t work.” Edwards didn’t elaborate on what programs he did not believe had worked, but I could name a few – any government program that relies solely on government assistance and not encourage private contributions from groups or religious organizations. That pretty much covers it.
•    The symbolism of the event can’t be overlooked. Here are Edwards and others talking about poverty in a posh student lounge decked with chandeliers and a coffee shop around the corner. Yes, lets talk about how bad people have it who are under the poverty line while we sit in our quaint little room talking.

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Live in the City, Work in the Burbs

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 09:58 AM's Otis White (still not this guy) has pointed on August 30 and August 22 to the trend of people living downtown and working in the suburbs, further fracturing the foundations of the faddish Florida fallacy. (Ok, that was excessive alliteration.) Another interesting fact is that cities and suburbs are both getting more diverse as non-Hispanic whites move downtown and minorities move to the suburbs. Otis says cities are getting less diverse, but white folk in Oakland, CA, actually make the city more diverse.

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Re: She made me do it

Posted by Paul Chesser at 09:37 AM

Michael, that's been going on since nearly the beginning of time.

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Bad Idea Jeans

Posted by Joseph Coletti at 09:32 AM

From Secret Holding Man Ted Stevens to David Dreier's new "immigration" bill, Washingtoon keep getting goofier. Dreier has three NC co-sponsors for his bill to put machine-readable strips on Social Security cards and tie them to a national Employment Eligibility Database.

Don't worry, though, the bill "States that nothing in this Act shall be construed to establish a national identification card."

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She made me do it....

Posted by Michael Moore at 09:23 AM

Ok how many times have you heard this? "She made me do it."  Well according to this article in the Sylva Herald a couple who attempted to steal an elderly man's "North Carolina Education" Lottery winnings, the boyfriend said  "I didn't know anything about it and it was her idea."  Bless their heart and to state lawmakers the lottery is also being used to test true love!     

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Less Can Get You More

Posted by Michael Moore at 08:53 AM

I'd buy it. Because if enough of us do, maybe these will be cheaper.

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Abstinence evasion

Posted by Paul Chesser at 08:45 AM

The American Spectator Online today has my piece up today defending the president's AIDS program in Africa. Probably not a libertarian's cup o' tea, and truth be told, I'd prefer no government involvement. But the point is that if this is what the government is going to do, then the president's way is preferable to the U.N.'s.

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Political groups sponsoring college football

Posted by Shannon Blosser at 08:34 AM

College football begins today with a few games across the nation. On Saturday the majority of Division I-A teams will take to the field and will be joined, in one instance, by a political action committee.

Friends of Coal, a group that aims to promote the coal industry in West Virginia, is the title sponsor of a game between West Virginia and Marshall on Saturday. There is nothing unusual about corporate sponsorship in athletic events - just look at NASCAR or even most college football bowl games. The problem here is that Friends of Coal is taking advantage of a captive audience who paid to watch a football game, not be given propoganda on the need for the coal industry in West Virginia.

It's a dangerous line I think that is being crossed. Imagine if similar groups, on both sides of the spectrum, decided to jump into the sponsorship game. Could we have the Planned Parenthood 500 at your next NASCAR event? What about the Moveon.Org Bowl? Let's even think ahead to the 2008 presidential race - The Hillary Clinton for President Classic?

I think I'd rather have my sports sponsorships coming from Nike, Bank of America, or GM Goodwrench. 

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An idea for Friday's music topic

Posted by Paul Chesser at 08:25 AM

How have you been bludgeoned and bullied, or how have you bludgeoned and bullied others, over their taste in music?

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