Archives for the Month of July 2006 on Jeffrey Quick's Blog

Starting early at home defence

"Because he can't put blood in our house, that's why," Jacqueline said. So, the 5-year-old, who stands less than four feet tall, escorted the burglar to the back door and told him, "Get out of the house."
If a 5 year old can do it, why doesn't every American?

Thank you, mzwyndi.

HERetics

Similar ceremonies conducted by the group Roman Catholic Womenpriests have been held before in other countries, and most of the participants have been excommunicated.
You can't be excommunicated when you're out of communion to begin with. Why can't reporters ever get this right? It's not the Church kicking people out; it's the Church telling people that they've left.

Say it ain't so, Mel

We want to believe the apple fell far enough from the tree. We want to believe you're one of the good guys. So stay off the sauce already.

And Foxman? DUI is not a hate crime. Grow up.

Willie Nelson gets it

"I think the fact that [the Dixie Chicks] were overseas and onstage had a little bit to do with it because you're speaking to other people about our business," the 73-year-old country crooner said in an interview in this week's Time magazine.

Exactly.
And Nelson's own comment was fact, not opinion: Bush is neither a Texan nor a cowboy, and there's no shame in that.

Mitt gets apologitis

Evidently, classics of American literature may no longer be referenced in political discourse. And I'm sure Joel Chandler Harris is no longer taught, as he was when I was in school.

"Tar baby is a totally inappropriate phrase in the 21st century," said Larry Jones, a black Republican and civil rights activist.
On the other hand:
What Harris, a man who despite his anthropological efforts subscribed to most of his culture's white-superiority beliefs, failed to see is that the tales he recorded for posterity undermined the very culture he worked to stimulate.

"Tar baby" is such a useful shorthand for a particular type of "sticky" situation that it would be a shame to lose it over racists' misuse of it (esp. since the story has nothing to do with race). And apologizing, and getting people used to apologies where none are needed, is a certain way to drive it out of circulation.

Dr. Josef Wendel does Baltimore

How I spent my Saturday:
Gerfeststage.JPG

Left to right: the festival's sound woman (whose name I forget; it's a luxury not to do our own sound, and it gets done right), Don Miller (tenor/clarinet...Don's been playing with Joe almost as long as Joe has had a band, which is now over 50 years), Halley Schoenberg (alto/clarinet, our regular sub from D.C., her 3rd time on this gig). Dave (trumpet from U. of Akron...his comment on Joe's arrangements was "Most music includes these things called rests.")

I'm a little conflicted about playing these gigs. The money really isn't worth the hassle, which in this case meant getting up at 4 AM so that I could meet the van leaving at 5:30 for a 12:30-5 gig in Baltimore, getting back home around 1:30 AM. "Too old for this shit" suggests itself, except that most of the band is older than I am. We've been capitalizing the farm like crazy, and Rusty isn't working, and money is money. Mostly I guess it's because I think this music needs to survive, and euphonium players don't grow on trees. One of these days Joe will die, or I'll die, and that'll be that.

(7/18/07: edited at the request of Dr. Josef Wendel.)

Kucinich gets some extra airplay

Geez, Beck, did you HAVE to subject me to that face this early in the AM?

Won't somebody stuff a Big Mac down his piehole and shut him up already?

Friday humor: PETA, the Pope, and the loggers

On a tour of Alaska, the Pope took a couple of days off for some sight seeing. He was cruising along in the 'Popemobile' when there was a frantic commotion just at the edge of the woods. A helpless PETA member, wearing sandals, shorts, a "Save the Whales" T-shirt and a Tree Hugger Hat, was struggling frantically, thrashing around trying to free himself from the jaws of a 10 foot grizzly.

As the Pope watched horrified, a group of loggers came racing up. One quickly fired a .338 magnum into the bear's chest. The other two reached up and pulled the bleeding & semiconscious tree hugger from the bear. Then using long clubs, the three loggers beat the bear to death and two of them threw it onto the bed of their truck while the other tenderly placed the injured tree hugger in the back seat.

As they prepared to leave, the Pope summoned them to come over. "I give you my blessing for your brave actions!" he told them. "I heard there was a bitter hatred between loggers and environmental activists, but now I've seen with my own eyes that is not true."

As the Pope drove off, one of the loggers asked his buddies "Who was that guy ?"

"It was the Pope," another replied, "he's in direct contact with God and has access to all God's wisdom."

"Well," the logger said, "he may have access to all God's wisdom, but he sure doesn't know anything about bear hunting.....is the bait holding up okay or do we need to go back into town and grab another one....?"

Freedom, responsibility, cancer, and rightwingprof

In response to this and this, rightwingprof writes:

Now, I'm going to piss a lot of people off. Please explain, in detail, how parents are somehow exempt from taking responsibility for their freedom? Remember, there is no freedom without responsibility. Why is it, then, that conservatives conveniently forget this basic precept when it comes to parents?

Certainly, it is the parents' decision. However, if their child dies as a result of that decision, they should be imprisoned for manslaughter. Period. The end. It's the same with religious freedom and doctors. Certainly, you have the right not to take your baby to the doctor, but if your baby dies as a result, you go to prison where you belong.

There is no freedom without responsibility, and parents are not exempt from responsibility.

Continue reading "Freedom, responsibility, cancer, and rightwingprof"

Real community values

Citizens for Community Values, having banned gay marriage, now wants to close porn stores and strip clubs at midnight. It seems to me that the right of private property is a more core "community value" than the hiding of T and A.

However, in this day where there are no enduring values or principles, I'm willing to compromise and meet them halfway. We'll close the strip joints at midnight...but churches can only be open from 7 until noon on Sunday morning. That's the only time most people want to go anyway. What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

And it has nothing to do with "an establishment of religion". It's just a simple zoning ordinance. Really.

So which Major Arcana card are you?

Today's silliness...

You scored as II - The High Priestess. The High Priestess is a card of intuition, instinct and hidden knowledge. She knows all your secrets, you can hide nothing from her. Yet you will never know the secrets she herself protects.If well aspected in a Tarot spread, this card can indicate the use of intuition to solve problems; trust to your instincts. If badly aspected, it can mean suppression and ignoring of such instincts - following your head at the expense of your heart.

IV - The Emperor

81%

II - The High Priestess

81%

VIII - Strength

75%

VI: The Lovers

69%

XVI: The Tower

69%

XI: Justice

69%

I - Magician

69%

XIII: Death

56%

X - Wheel of Fortune

56%

XIX: The Sun

56%

0 - The Fool

44%

XV: The Devil

38%

III - The Empress

31%

Which Major Arcana Tarot Card Are You?
created with QuizFarm.com

OH Supremes block Norwood eminent domain

...unanimously.

Clone those folks and send them to DC. Here's another nail in Kelo (the Dred Scott of the 21st century).

This makes my day.

1st Amendment void in Katrina camps

One isn't allowed to go into a FEMA trailer camp to do an interview without a FEMA agent with one at all times. Even if the interviewee invited you in.

Yeah, it's one more reason to toss FEMA back into the Alphabet Soup can. But why are Katrina refugees putting up with this? And why are they living in Federal housing after a year?

UPDATE: They've backed off. Funny what light does to cockroaches.

Do I HAVE to defend Blackwell?

Equality Ohio thinks that Ken Blackwell should apologize for and retract his opinions about homosexuality.

While I find Ken's obsession with gays to be distasteful, and would rather he obsessed about free, fair and open elections, he doesn't owe anybody an apology. His opinions, based on his religion, are his opinions. It's not like he's interrupting military funerals or something. If gays don't like it, they can vote for William Peirce on Nov. 7.

Concert

The Mac concert went well, and we had good attendence (I didn't count noses, but over 50 for sure).

Continue reading "Concert"

Specter: Shrub's karma

Arlen Specter was railing against Bush's stem-cell veto, and cited church history about dissection. Too bad it was all a lie. And even if it were true, how would his denial of federal funding (something he should have used his veto on for the last 6 years) be equivalent to the Church's power to shut down investigation, unless Specter believes that government is a religion? Which he just may.

Hey Shrub, you still happy you worked to defeat Pat Toomey?

Mommy buy me one please please?

An electric car that will go 0-60 in 3 seconds (up to 70 in FIRST GEAR), with a range of 250 miles. A little steep for me at $80K...but I want one!

Judge to Arlie: kiss my boots!

Farm and Dairy's lead story was about the Stutzman case. No new news, but this quote was revealing:

"[Stutzman] expressed no remorse for his violations and indicated no desire to bring his conduct into compliance with the court's orders or Ohio law," White wrote.
Ohmygod, a sociopath! Could it be, Judge White, that Arlie felt no remorse because he had done nothing wrong?

It seems (as I experienced in this case) that the Law is not content unless you feel guilt.

NAIS for vegetarians?

Per Reuters, Beijing News says that China will track every vegetable for the Olympics. I doubt this. The thread on ClaireFiles calls this "NAIS for vegetables". Of course, it isn't. It's only NAIS if the growers have to report the demise of every broccoli seedling within 24 hrs, and if they have to pay to implant RFID tags in the daikons.

It sounds like a Great Leap Forward to me.

Incitatus for Senate MMVI

After swearing that I would avoid partisan politics, I now find myself in the unenviable role of being manager for the Incitatus for Senate MMVI campaign.

Incitatus has a record of political service, having been appointed to the Roman Senate around 40 AD. He was put to pasture after the fall of his owner and political patron Caligula, and has been trying to make a comeback ever since. We think that MMVI is a good year for an Incitatus run in Ohio, since the majority party has been tainted by scandal, and the minority party is a scandal, and the self-centeredness, depravity and insanity of the electorate has fnally reached the depths of Caligula. Neither Mikey DeWhine nor Shagrod Brown could possible win with a real candidate in the race, which is why they've done their best to make sure that real candidates are not allowed to run. But Incitatus learned intrigue from a master, and even Ken Blackwell stands in fear and awe of his manipulations.

We've discussed several campaign slogans. Incitatus had proposed his master's old favorite, oderint dum metuant. but it's a little negative, and with the anti-illegal immigrant sentiment, it was felt that a non-English slogan would be a turnoff. (Plus it's already taken.) "He'll always vote neigh," would appeal to conservatives and libertarians who admire Ron Paul as "Dr. No", but it doesn't have broad appeal. We finally settled on, "Why vote for just the rear?" as something that would exploit anti-incumbent sentiment.

There are some negatives to be dealt with, certainly. Incitatus has a taste for high living, eats oats with gold flake out of an ivory manger, and wears purple clothes and a jewelled collar. But the vark-like gold should appeal to the Indian-American community, and the loud colors and bling should help him in the cities, where he does not have a natural constituency. (Geauga and Holmes Counties are a lock.). Also, there's a bit role in a notoriously violent and pornographic movie. But if Ronald Reagan could overcome Bedtime for Bonzo, overcoming Caligula should be a breeze.

He's already picked up one celebrity endorsement. Mr. Ed is hosting a fundraiser on his California ranch.

I'd like to thank Claire Wolfe for introducing me to Incitatus' career, and hope that she will help get the word out. We're considering t-shirts, bumper stickers, and buttons now.

Liturgical concert at the Mac, 7/23, 3PM

Since the date is roaring down upon us, I thought I'd best blog about the project that's been soaking up my evenings:

Liturgical music by Cleveland composers and friends.
Sunday July 23, 3PM
Immaculate Conception Church
4129 Superior Ave. (at E. 43rd)

by the (augmented) Immaculate Conception Schola Cantorum
with guest artists Chris Toth (organ), Michael Leese (flute, conductor), Sean Gabriel (flute), Jocelyn Chang (harp).

The works on the concert are of varying styles. Some are very practical for everyday church use, some are more difficult to prepare. There's definitely a bias toward Latin liturgy (this is the Mac, after all), with nods toward old-style Anglicanism and a work written for Bay Presbyterian.

Here's the program, with a few comments:

Continue reading "Liturgical concert at the Mac, 7/23, 3PM"

The end for San Francisco

I was tempted to write "the beginning of the end", but it's been beginning for some time now. This is the coffin nail. Sit back and watch sickly cheese-suckers move in as businesses move out.

It was once a great city, I'm told.

Something's growing at Black Water Farm

It might as well be buildings, since it isn't crops. :-(

First, the new coop. Decoration is Rusty's.
coopdonefront.JPG

And the new bunny hutch, designed and built by Wondrous Spouse (with a little help from me and granddaughter Sara):
Bunnyhutch.JPG

"Hail, King of the Beers"

Houston has a billboard with the Second Person of the Trinity hoisting a cold one, with the caption "King of Jews...King of beers".

Given the Man's skill as a vintner, I don't doubt that He would have had a beer occasionally, if they'd served it in Judean inns. But Budweiser? A beer that can't pass the Reinheitsgebot, going down the gullet of the very image of Reinheit?

Given what happened after "King of the Jews" was applied to Jesus, maybe an appropriate public response would be to tack empty cans onto crosses. How do you write "Budweiser, King of Beers" in Latin?

Case security goes pro

I thought Case Security HAD guns...they won't let the rest of us have them, so I figured that of course they would. What was the campus administration thinking? Even drug store rent-a-cops are armed.

In any case, arming and professionalizing campus security is generally a good move. I'm not in general in favor of multiplying the population of sus scrofa, and I hope that this training will not turn Security from being the helpful bunch they've generally been. If Case is going to claim a monopoly on the use of force as a condition of employment, their staff had better be up to the job.

Ain't your street, Clinic

The Cleveland Clinic wants to take over Euclid Ave.

Nobody sensible uses Euclid to go anywhere, except there. But the Clinic area still needs to be car-accessible. And the idea of an economic 800 lb gorilla calling the shots on street use does not sit well with me. It's bad enough that RTA will construct the Eusless Corridor, mostly for them.

And look at the PD headline: "Clinic wants to clear up congestion on Euclid". No bias there, is there?

WI refuses to play "can the moonbat"

...and quite rightly so. It's not the legislature's job; it's the job of students and donors. Let the market work.

It's a mistake to think there is perfect intellectual freedom in academia. One's peers have their ways of showing one the correct path. But political interference compounds the problem. You really really don't want legislators saying who will teach what.

On the other hand, the claim that 9/11 was a Reichstag Fire requires extraordinary proof, and an academic whose arguments are weak in that arena may show similar weakness in the rest of his academic work. It's well to remember that Ward Churchill was fired for academic fraud, not for tacky comments.

Rabbits breeding like rabbits

Our doe apparently had her first successful pregnancy last night. The nest box was full of fur, and it's been seen moving. Mom was out of the box, taking a break. Meanwhile, her neighbor (father of the kits) has just earned the name Skydiver for knocking his cage to the ground (5 feet) with him in it. Rusty is building a rabbit hutch, with the help of granddaughter Sara (who has actually been working, be still my heart), which will have 7 cage spaces in it.

Coop and fencing is done (I've got to post a picture) except that we need to run electricity out there. All is good with animals; wish I could say the same about plants. I should have planted rice...

Arlie loses

Arlie Stutzman (last discussed here) lost his raw milk case. On the basis of the law, it couldn't have been otherwise. Judge White found that accepting donations was a subterfuge for sales, but said (strangely enough given the wording of OH law) that it was OK for Arlie to GIVE his milk away; I suspect this was to nail down the religious objection.

On to the legislature, I guess...

Speaking of Net fences...

...the notorious gun discussion group troll most often known as GunKid (John Melvin Davis) is facing some less virtual walls for stealing some guns from his estranged wife's storage locker (bad!). That led cops to his own storage lockers where they found a bunch of weaponry (not bad, but definitely illegal, given that GunKid had a string of felony convictions).

Here's some discussion on a site that had been victimized by him.

Spite fences in the blogosphere

Here's Billy Beck exposing Kim du Toit and Stephen den Beste as absolute babies who have blocked links from Beck's site.

But the rot is closer to home. A friend, devout Jew and "recovering Democrat" attempted to post a comment on this post, and got a message:

"Content Submission Error":
"Your comment was denied for questionable content".

There really was nothing questionable about it, except that it dealt, respectfully, with the "R issue" in politics, which we're not supposed to talk about. Now, I can see how it might be useful to have a filter which would catch KKK rantings, but it seems that if I have the power to approve or disapprove SPAM (which I do), I should have equal power to approve substantive posts. And if I were in the business of spewing racial hatred here (which I'm not), I can see how my employer might have some legitimate say about it. But this kind of penny-ante censorship does not befit an institution of higher learning.

UPDATE: read the first comment below. Evidently this is not content-based (unless you consider CiAli$ spam to be "content") but the result of somebody playing recklessly with the spam blacklist. My apologies to all whom I cast aspersions on (especially since I'll need their help in unbloacking this. )

Spycams in Lake Wobegon

I'm sure Garrison Keillor would approve of this.

In every rural town, there's sombody who wants to climb to power in the name of "progress". We have one in Windham Twp., a twerp named Kevin Knight who talks about "free money" as if there were such a thing and who wants to build a park in the midst of miles of greenery. He narrowly missed election to Council last time around, and when the old man who beat him retires, I may be forced to run myself.

I had feared that "free money" from the DHS had funded this monstrosity, but no, the sheeple actually worked to raise money.

And they were useless in the one real crime that happened since they went up.

Euclid council not dark enough

I don't get this at all. Because Euclid has at-large council seats, black people don't have voting rights? Like they have a right to black representation on council? Isn't that racist? Isn't that demanding a guarenteed outcome based on race?

Detroit has had at-large seats for years, and a consistently-colored council. Where has Wan J. Kim been?

Nudity with your car chases now mandatory

It's copyright infringement to sell a cleaned-up copy of a Hollywood movie, even if you include the original piece of filth masterwork with every sale. So says U.S. District Court Judge Richard Matsch.

I'm of multiple minds on this. Work identity is important. But I'm a great believer in subsidiary works, which is really what we have here. I might have demanded a trailer on the bottom of the screen reading "This work has been altered" or some such, to make it clear that what is being shown is not totally the director's work. The target audience knows that. But just in case some innocent saw an unidentified cleaned-up copy and thought the director was a wuss, screen ID would be an acceptable compromise.

But Hollywood should be careful of what they ask for. As it is, these people are so anxious to be a market for them that they are willing to pay more than the usual price for bowdlerized versions. If they can't get them, they will probably cease buying mainstream videos altogether. That may be a small market, but it's growing, if for no other reason than that they make more babies than average. And it may be bigger than people think; look at the success of Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ. Movies are a business, and at some point the studios will have business reasons to sit on the directors...and then they'll really have something to cry about.

What I'd like to see is a sanitized version of a Ron Jeremy film. That would be funny.

Blunt doc saved by judge

Dr. Terry Bennett uses some pretty stark language with his patients when he thinks it's necessary. The NH Board of Medicine wanted to discipline him for that. Judge Edward Fitzgerald disagreed:

"It is nonetheless important ... to ensure that physicians and patients are free to discuss matters relating to health without fear of government reprisal, even if such discussions may sometimes be harsh, rude or offensive to the listener," he concluded in the ruling Wednesday.

Fitzgerald also ruled that state and American Medical Association requirements to treat patients with "compassion and respect for human dignity and rights" are so vague they are unconstitutional. Bennett probably would have won his challenges before the board, the judge said.

If a patient thinks that a doctor is rude, he can fire him. This is not an area (if there is any area) where governmental professional boards should have any say. Myself, I'd rather have a doctor who cared enough to get in my face.

And of course, sellers of foods, drugs and supplements apparently don't have the same freedom, for some odd reason.

So our police will soon be Indian-American too?

Joe Biden steps in it, big time (video here) while schmoozing an Indian:

"In Delaware, the largest growth in population is Indian Americans, moving from India. You cannot go to a 7/11 or a Dunkin Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent. I'm not joking."

Joe had better hope that nobody tries to assassinate him, because dollars to donuts (smirk) the surgeon who patches him up will be an Indian-American.

Thanks to Boortz.

FFA: Future Fascists of America

The Harford County school system plans to open what will apparently be the nation's first magnet program focused on homeland security, preparing high school students for careers in disaster response, high-level computer science and law enforcement.

Why not? My high school had courses in pig raising too.
(Apologies to The National FFA Organization)

Thanks to Claire Files.

More on arts tax

I'm pretty teed over a tax I won't be paying, given that I'm not a smoker and no longer live in Cuyahoga Co. (partly over shenanegans like this, and the commissioners attempts to shut down Dick Walters' gun shows). This actually has a better chance of passing than their last attempt (a sales tax), as in general, those who will benefit from it will not be the ones paying it; it's a transfer tax from the poor to the rich, supported by "the working man's friend", the Democratic Party. How's that for irony?

It might be argued that since "we" already tax smokers to fund professional sports facilities, it's "only fair" to tax them for the arts. But it was also wrong to tax smokers for the stadiums. If it was any more right, it was only because the percentage of sports fans who smoke is probably higher than the percentage of arts patrons who smoke, given that arts appreciation requires a certain degree of intelligence and smoking is a stupid thing to do; as a class they were largely paying for their own amusement rather than making somebody else pay for it.

Then there's the economic development angle. Remember the "28000 Gateway jobs" (i.e., 500 restaurant jobs circulated 56 times as restaurants closed)? It seems to me that the economic benefits of the tax are equally specious. Arts tourism is not that big. And the tax will depress the economic development that would naturally occur from smokers spending the money that is going instead to tax....development for something that somebody actually wants.

My biggest problem with this is that I might be forced to become a beneficiary of it. Not so much as an arts consumer; most arts organizations in town get at least some money from trayf sources (Ohio Arts Council if nothing else), and it's too much work to research that for me to be a purist. But as a composer, I could see Composers Guild going after the money (not when I'm an officer!), filling out long grant applications detailing the sex and ethnicity of each of our members (if we let some rap "artists" in, do we get the swag?). It's even possible that our private funders would expect us to go to the city before asking money from them, which would give us no choice in the matter. At that point, I think I would have to quit submitting scores, which would probably destroy the meager excuse for a career that I have now.

Papers take de bait

What to make of this? A bunch of big papers propose a gubernatorial debate. Blackwell proposes that the Call and Post (Black paper) be added. Strickland, not wanting to alienate part of his base, agrees. The papers, not wanting to support a competing product, refuse. Thus, no debate. Blackwell brings up an unacceptable proposal, so he gets out of a debate he doesn't want (because he might say something substantive, and you either love or hate Blackwell, which means he could only lose the uncommitted) and makes the papers (which have not been his friend) look like racists.

He's slick. I despise him, but I must give credit where it's due.

A modest proposal for artists and smokers

Smokers are a real engine of economic development. There are all those hospitals to be built, doctors to be paid, cleaners to get the stench out. They even save the federal government money, by dying before they collect their share of Social Security. And Cuyahoga County needs all the economic development it can get.

Therefore I propose that the county commissioners place the following proposal on the ballot: that all admissions to artistic events be taxed at $1.00 per admission. Yes, even the free ones, because why should those Bohemian bums get something for nothing? The proceeds will go to providing free cigarettes of their chosen brand for all smokers who will register as addicts. After all, it's not their fault they were molested by Joe Camel in their impressionable youth. They are victims of nicotine, who just can't help themselves. They are generally poor. And folks who can afford theater and concert tickets (and who are generally not smokers, except for the occasional cigar) have plenty of dough with which to help the less fortunate, and their insatiable desire for Art will cause them to pay regardless of means. And if they do quit Art for more socially acceptable pastimes such as Reality TV, so much the better.

If any of the above seems unjust to you, tell me: how is this any different in principle from the commissioners plan to tax ciggies to support the arts Hezbollah?

Breast high by the 4th of July

Here's my wife, for comparison, in the little patch of Silver King field corn. Even the replants are almost knee high. It's one of the few bright spots...that, and baby summer squash. But the garden is under water again.

The witchery of hitchery

My implements came at around 1:30 yeaterday.

The man who delivered them had helpful hints about maintaining the gearbox on the brush hog, and how and why an 8N drives a tiller (fast 1st gear and no live PTO make for a skimmy job). But the basic stuff seemed just too stupid to ask about, and there's no "Tractors for dummies" book out there. I hitched up the brush hog ... not all the way, because Rusty was out and both PTO shafts were still in her trunk. But I could see I was missing a few things; for one, the implement was only hitched at 2 points. So when she returned, I went to Tractor Supply and got some lynch pins, 2 PTO shaft pins, a bar for the top of the hitch, and a drawbar so I can tow my wagon. After dinner I put it all together...and it wouldn't raise. I finally figured out that the PTO had to be engaged for the hydraulics to work. The problem with that was that I didn't have control figured out and would either take the implement too high or would ground it, either of which would cause the PTO pin to shear and the shaft to dance around like a cobra ready to strike from the inertia of the brush hog blade (a steel bar with steel bars loosely pinned at either end, to club to death anything that gets in its way, sort of a weed whacker on steroids). Having used up my supply of PTO pins, I'm out of business until after the holiday.

I need to order an operators manual for the 8N ($15-$20 online). Given how many were sold to Southerners converting from mules, it should tell me everything I need to know.

New stuff!

The tractor.

That's all you get tonight; this connection is just too slow.

I got out early and began to dig the garden out from the weeds, while Rusty went out for chicken coop supplies. She came back with stair materials plus 5 gallons of Killz 2, tinted PINK. Well, it's her chicken coop. After brunch we went to Chalker's auction...way too early as it turned out, as they didn't get to equipment until well after 1. I bought a 5' Woods tiller and a brushhog. The tiller was $125 more than I was going to pay (though still about $500 less than a new King Kutter) and I'm not even positive the Ford will run it (8N is about 22 hp, KK's 5-ft tiller wants 25-40). If not, I'll have to sell and buy a 4', or none, or sell the tractor. The 'hog is older, painted Deere green (obviously not by Deere). They are to be delivered on Monday. I could have gotten them home myself, maybe. They could get them in the pickup for me, but I doubt I could get them out with my equipment. Or I could drive the tractor the 9 mile round trip, twice, with the stuff on the hitch, at 13 mph tops. It's $30 well spent.

One I got back home, I decided to go to Ravenna to TSC to get the stuff I didn't find. It was all way too much money, and I can wait on a post hole digger and a box blade. Then to Marc's which pissed me off by having NO sugar free ice cream, leading me to the self-limiting sin of Ben and Jerry's. I got home, saw the chick feed and galvanized metal primer, but NO Ford manual or 5W-30. Crap; must have left it in the cart. And their phone was busy. So Rusty and I piled into car and made the longish jaunt to Ravenna again; TSC staff had recovered the bag and were happy to give it to me. By that point it was near 8 and rapidly crashing sugar sent us to Taco Bell, after which I felt human
.

Democrats reaching out to evangelicals

Some progressive type Christians organized a convention and invited Howard Dean to bloviate:

America needs "a social safety net that will take care of people. That is the mark of true Christianity," Dean said.

Is this to say that a good Christian is the functional equivalent of a good Marxist? (Billy Sunday is a good Christian; Billy Graham is not, though he may become one any day now.)

Yep, Jesus was just a political rabble rouser, agitating for trade unions and the 40 hour work week. That's funny; I thought he wanted US (not U.S.) to take care of the poor, not to stick guns in our neighbor's faces to force THEM to take care of the poor.

While I think that the Democrat's pursuit of "moral values" is mere pandering, on another level, I welcome it. The identification of the Republican party with the Religious Right has done it no good. There are people who would vote Republican, but have been scared into thinking that if they do so, we will all have 7 children and dress like the Amish. Linking the Dems to Christianity will help balance and defuse that, or at least pose a counter-scenario: that we will be forced to join hands in a circle and sing "Kum-bye-ya".

Why librarians annoy me

SAN ANTONIO — The library director at the University of the Incarnate Word has canceled the library's subscription to The New York Times to protest articles revealing a covert government program to track terrorist financing.

I'm sympathetic to this viewpoint politically. But you don't jerk your serials around like that. Like them or not (and I don't), the NYT is and is likely to remain the paper of record in this country, and is used constantly as a research tool. Professionally, I think it was a poor decision.

But that's not why librarians annoy me. This is:

Library staff members said they were shocked by Morgan's e-mail.

"The censorship is just unspeakable," staff member Jennifer Romo said. "There is no reason, no matter what your beliefs, to deny a source of information to students."

There's no "censorship" going on here, unless she really thinks that the curatorial function of collection management is censorship, in which case she really needs to get into another business. Since you can't collect everything (not even the Library of Congress can...or keep track of it once collected, according to one of our faculty members), you have to decide what doesn't get collected. And politics plays a role in that. I'm not saying that it should (or shouldn't), but that it does. If Jen Romo collects at all, I could probably find evidence of bias in her collecting. (She probably doesn't; I note the "staff member", and while I deplore the "no MLS=not a librarian" mentality, I suspect from the depth of her analysis that she's some student book-shelver.)

With such confusion about the notion of censorship, it's not surprising that the ALA has been reluctant to slap Castro's wrist over his treatment of private Cuban libraries.

As for the denial of information charge, the NYT is so ubiquitous that nobody who really needs it is going to do without. If that were the intent...

"In the real world, it's an almost futile act on many levels," [Kelly McBride] said. "From what we know about the reading habits of college students, it will not make a difference because they read online."

Thanks to WorldNetDaily.