Wednesday, December 31, 2003

Two Winners

Howard Dean visits The Frozen Tundra:

"Dean had some other laugh lines during the day, including one of several allusions to the hometown heroic Green Bay Packers. Referring to the colors of the Service Employees International Union (and of the vanquished Minnesota Vikings), Dean said he made a wise choice in not wearing his purple SEIU jacket to the event (though he did at one point don a Packers hat and a cheesehead)."

Now, this cleary violates the Calvin Coolidge rule: Never be photographed waring a funny hat. But in Green Bay, Wisconsin, it's smart...
A new year, a new Democrat

"Pennsylvania State Treasurer Barbara Hafer, one of the state's most enduring Republican politicians in the last 15 years, has switched her party registration to Democratic. The unsuccessful GOP nominee for governor in 1990 said she shifted her party loyalty simply because she felt her progressive stance on social issues, such as her support of abortion rights, no longer fit in with the GOP..."

Tuesday, December 30, 2003

Standing Offer

The Sopranos season 5 will premiere Sunday, March 7th, 2004.

Here's the offer (and you can't... naah. Too obvious):

Free home cooked Italian cuisine in your home for 13 weeks.


  • Dinner must be served Sunday at 8 p.m.
  • Youse gotta have HBO.

  • This would explain the problem with the old email address

    North Liberty Internet firm files bankruptcy

    North Liberty-based Internet service provider Internet Navigator has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and plans to sell off its assets to the highest bidder.

    The move will not affect customer services, said Wes Huisinga, a Cedar Rapids attorney who was named as trustee of the company Monday.

    Legally known as On-Line Services LLC following a Chapter 11 restructuring that was completed earlier this year, the 8-year-old company currently has between 8,000 and 10,000 customers, said Michael Glick, chief executive officer of the company.

    According to documents filed Dec. 23 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Iowa, On-Line Services had about $1.7 million in total assets and about $2.2 million in debt.

    Glick said the company simply could not compete with larger Internet service providers that offer better and less expensive services.

    The company's North Liberty office urrently employs only two customer service operators, a drop from 13 after the company downsized last month.
    Notes from a Christmas vacation

    Still trying to get my bearings back in Iowa City. I can't remember the last time I took off five straight days.

    The Miracle In The Desert certainly ranked as one of the high points. Also a lot of serious nephew-niece time, even a couple runs down the ole hill on a sled before the snow melted.

  • The squirrels in my parents' backyard are the fattest squirrels on the planet.
  • It is extremely unusual anymore for me to be the adult male in the room with the most hair (only because my genetically mutant middle brother didn't travel)
  • Spongebob Squarepants is actually very funny
  • I have a good ear for recognizing cartoon voices - I spotted both Dauber from Coach and Worf from Star Trek TNG.
  • I'm not going to eat for a week
  • I was in the unfortunate position of needing car repair and the garage I went to 15 years ago when I lived in Wisconsin was still there, still run by the same guy, and expanded. Tells me he does a good job
  • Milosevic Wins Parliament Seat in Serbia Election

    This takes the concept of skeletons in the closet to new lows.

    Monday, December 29, 2003

    Arizona Receiver Will Be Mayor Guest at Packers Game

    "Of course, he's my favorite non-Packers player," Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt said...

    Schmitt's invitation took Poole by surprise.

    "I heard that the fans in Green Bay were quite some fans, but I didn't expect this," he said in a telephone interview Monday with the Green Bay Press-Gazette.

    He wasn't even thinking about the Packers when he made his catch at the end of the game.

    "I was just trying to get a victory for the team because we've been down," Poole said.

    Schmitt also will give Poole a key to the city.

    Sunday, December 28, 2003

    The Christmas Miracle In The Desert

    As Vikings players fell to the ground in complete disbelief in Arizona, pandemonium erupted at Lambeau Field. News of the Cardinals' game-winning touchdown spread like wildfire through the stadium as Packers fans gripped their portable radios and watched the luxury box televisions to confirm what they had just heard. Packers players got the sense that something must have happened in Arizona, as they could not understand why their fans were cheering so loudly for the two-minute warning...

    Wednesday, December 24, 2003

    VH1 Will Release Zevon Special on DVD

    "We got together with Artemis (Records) ... and I went through all the tapes and tried to pick some extra tracks to put on there," Jordan Zevon told AP Radio in a recent interview.

    "They're all moments that are uncut. They're not edited together for the sake of time and go from bit to bit. They're actually just little moments in the making of the record."

    Tuesday, December 23, 2003

    Two nickels, please

    "Rep. Mark Souder, R-Ind., is sponsoring legislation that would authorize the replacement of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's profile on the U.S. 10-cent piece with Ronald Reagan's..."

    Monday, December 22, 2003


    "With one spectacular long pass after another, Favre decimated the Raiders' patchwork defense with one of the greatest performances in his 13-year career..."

    What a player. What a man.
    The mother of all trials: Saddam likely to portray America as accomplice

    You know, that's one thing we have Saddam to thank for: that phrase "the mother of all ______." Remember Gulf War I back in `91? One of those catchy lines that just stays with ya.
    Favre's father dies, QB will play tonight

    Talk about playing with pain.

    A Statement From The Favre Family

    All best wishes and prayers to Brett and his family.
    On Familiar Ground, Kerry Labors to Win Over Voters

    NY Times Apple nails it:

    "There is something plaintive, something almost wistful about Kerry these days, as if he finds it inconceivable that he is having so much trouble convincing his fellow New Englanders that he and not Dr. Dean has the experience needed for the presidency. Like Hubert H. Humphrey in 1968, Mr. Kerry seems astonished that though he paid his dues, the nomination may go to a man who has not done so, at least in his eyes..."

    When history looks back at the 2004 nomination contest they will record two critical moments: 1) Al Gore opting out and 2) John Kerry voting for the war and alienating the Democratic base. The Man from Mass could have had this thing, but the Bush Blank Check vote left an opening for the Doctor. And now Dean is about more than just Iraq.

    Aplle also notes: "Two days on the road with Mr. Kerry left unanswered the question of why his campaign here has not taken off... But the candidate himself clearly bears some of the responsibility. At Hopkinton High School, he found it hard to connect with his youthful audience, the kind of group Dr. Dean charms."

    Sunday, December 21, 2003

    AAAAAA! Godzilla!

    "To mark the 50th anniversary, Rialto Pictures will be giving the original, uncut Nippon version - directed by Ishiro Honda and titled Gojira - a U.S. release in the spring..."
    Napster for President

    A "gets it" article about Dean online. A few choice bits:

    "The condescending reaction to the Dean insurgency by television's political correspondents can be reminiscent of that hilarious party scene in the movie "Singin' in the Rain," where Hollywood's silent-era elite greets the advent of talkies with dismissive bafflement."

    "The big Dean innovation is to empower passionate supporters to leave their computer screens entirely to hunt down unwired supporters as well and to gather together in real time at face-to-face meetings they organize on their own with no help from (or cost to) the campaign hierarchy., the for-profit Web site that the Dean campaign contracted to facilitate these meetings, didn't even exist until last year. From Mr. Trippi's perspective, "The Internet puts back into the campaign what TV took out — people."

    "To say that the competing campaigns don't get it is an understatement. A tough new anti-Dean attack ad has been put up on the campaign's own site, where it's a magnet for hundreds of thousands of dollars in new contributions..."

    "Should Dr. Dean actually end up running against President Bush next year, an utterly asymmetrical battle will be joined. The Bush-Cheney machine is a centralized hierarchy reflecting its pre-digital C.E.O. ethos (and the political training of Karl Rove); it is accustomed to broadcasting to voters from on high rather than drawing most of its grass-roots power from what bubbles up from insurgents below."

    "The music industry thought tough talk, hard-knuckle litigation and lobbying Congress could stop the forces unleashed by Shawn Fanning, the teenager behind Napster. Today the record business is in meltdown, and more Americans use file-sharing software than voted for Mr. Bush in the last presidential election. The luckiest thing that could happen to the Dean campaign is that its opponents remain oblivious to recent digital history and keep focusing on analog analogies to McGovern and Goldwater instead."

    Friday, December 19, 2003

    Nader bashers listen up

    Nader said he was unlikely to run if Howard Dean got the Democratic nomination.

    Says Nader: "Reading his position papers sounds eerily similar to what we've been saying. He speaks clearly - not in Senate-ese - and projects vigor. We need a macho Democrat."

    So to everyone who keeps saying "we lost because of Nader": The obvious solution is to nominate the one credible Democrat who can win back most of the three million Nader voters. Nominate a pro-war Democrat and the Nader vote will double.

    Think about it. Stop bashing. Start building.

    Wednesday, December 17, 2003

    Lieberman. Joe Lieberman.

    "Dr. Dean," Lieberman said, "has become Dr. No."

    Which obviously casts Joe as 007:

    Bond's mission takes him to the steamy island of Jamaica, where mysterious energy waves are interfering with U.S. missile launches. As he unravels the astonishing truth, 007 must fight deadly assassins, sexy femme fatales and even a poisonous tarantula. With the help of crack CIA agent Felix Leiter (Jack Lord) and the beautiful Honey Ryder (Ursula Andress), Bond searches for the headquarters of Dr. No, a fanatical scientist who is implementing an evil plan of world domination. Only James Bond, with his combination of wit, charm and skill, can confront the madman and save the human race from a horrible fate.

    Hmm. I think Bond is a little spicier that Lieberman's usual taste... and in the grand scheme of the Democratic contest, Joe Lieberman has the stature of Mini-Me.

    So Joe: Zip it. Zip Zip Zip Zzzzzzzip it. Zip-a-dee-doo-dah Zip it.
    Do Democrats Need the South?

    Author says no; most of the article is Why We Shouldn't and it ends with We Don't Need To Anyway"

    "Democrats are almost certain to wage serious campaigns in Florida, Arkansas, Louisiana, North Carolina, and perhaps Virginia and Tennessee. The point is, however, that Democrats don’t need any of these states to win and thus may not feel compelled to water down their national message to compete there..."

    Tuesday, December 16, 2003 : Thurmond's Son to Meet Mixed-Race Sibling

    Now THAT would be some really interesting reality television
    Thune says he will not run for Janklow seat

    "Thune's decision gives House Democrats a boost of momentum in the June 1 special election. Stephanie Herseth has been running on the Democratic side for more than a month, and even Republicans acknowledge that she currently leads all of their potential candidates."

    The down side:

    "Thune has not ruled out challenging Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle next year..."
    Circular Firing Squad Alert

    "The AJHPV is spending about $500,000 on TV spots, which began in Iowa and started running in South Carolina and New Hampshire this weekend. But it prefers to attack Mr. Dean without revealing its backers -- or their connections to the Gephardt campaign..."

    This is just the kind of stuff that turns people off of politics entirely. And Lieberman's "spider hole" comments are the moral equivalent of calling a guy Comrade back in the Cold War. Indeed, I've come to the conclusion that Joe Lieberman is the Colonel Flagg of the Democratic Party.

    As Sinead (remember her?) would say, fight the real enemy.

    Speaking of which, I saw a headline describing this week's Lauryn Hill meltdown as "pull(ing) a Sinead"...
    Life begins at 40?

    John Lennon wrote a song called Life begins at 40, and look what happened to him...

    In other news it looks like ole zeus is giving me one last gasp of messages, I just got one about an event that was last night. This should help me complete the move...

    Monday, December 15, 2003

    Fill up my in box

    The bright side of changing email addresses is it's an excuse to send everybody on the planet an email and maybe hear back.

    The down side is that a lot of them will get Elvised.

    The other down side is that you'll irritate some people who really DON'T want to hear from you.

    The next 48 hours should be interesting.
    I've had it

    And the migration begins.

    I've lost four days worth of email and the dialup ISP is telling me my email address never existed. That would make the 4 1/2 YEARS worth of messages hard to explain.

    See, I've been paying for the Internet twice: once for my high speed connection, and once for the minimal account I kept to hang onto my email address and web site.

    THEN I found out that Mediacom now has personal web space.


    Henceforth my home page is

    and my email is (spam free version)

    UPDATE: The dumping of INav is likely to be sooner rather than later. After about four customer service conversations, I've come to the conclusion that they unplugged my server and have no intention of plugging it back in...

    Sunday, December 14, 2003

    Is It Time to Believe?

    "At this point, after he has amassed the armies of small donors and bloggers and volunteers, blocking Dean is not blocking one man. It's blocking the hopes of millions of Democrats who—understand the importance of this—would walk through fire for a candidate for the first time in their lives. That isn't something that should be done cavalierly; in the long term, blocking the active participation of these millions may do more damage to the Democratic Party than four more years of George W. Bush. "
    Still Not Over

    "Indeed, just Sunday, with Saddam in captivity, an apparent suicide bomber detonated an explosives packed vehicle outside a Baghdad police station, killing at least 17 people..."

    And how long since the name Osama has been uttered?

    Friday, December 12, 2003

    Out of touch

    Just on the incredibly random chance that someone is reading this, my e-mail has been down all day. Since 11:30 AM Thursday, I have only gotten one message. Not even so much as a v1agr@ ad or a LOWEST INTEREST RATES. Just one message - from my ole pal Joe Lieberman.

    I blame him. Why not.

    Also, last night I was polled for the millionth time, but I think this was an actual poll and not a voter ID call, since I early and repeatedly IDd myself as Dean and I know it wasn't Dean's folks calling.

    The highlight was when the caller was reading the list of candidates, got tounge-tangled, and actually pronounced the name of the Connecticut Senator as, I kid you not, "Jew Lieberman."

    Then I got the "thermometer" question.

    Pollster: "Rate the following individuals on a thermometer, with 0 being the coldest and 100 the hottest."

    Deeth: "OK"

    Pollster: "George W. Bush."

    Deeth: "Nine below zero." (squeezing in a gratuitous Dylan reference)

    Pollster (humourlessly): "You can't go below zero."

    Deeth: "Are you sure?" (it gets pretty cold in December in Iowa...)

    'Sammy the Bull' Charged With 1980 Cop Killing

    "Earlier this year, convicted murderer Richard 'The Iceman' Kuklinski told authorities that he shot Calabro on orders from Gravano..."

    Just love those Mob nicknames.
    I'm an uncle again

    A big welcome to the world for Vivian Deeth of Midland, Michigan!

    Wednesday, December 10, 2003

    South Dakota GOP Rocked by Janklow Verdict

    "I think in a special election, you have to say Stephanie's going to be tough," acknowledged Republican activist Neal Tapeo of Sioux Falls...

    Tuesday, December 09, 2003

    More on Gore

    First of all, I'm still Dean.

    And I know this helps him.

    And no one is hurt worse than Lieberman.

    But even though my analysis is "game over," I can't say I'm happy.

    I feel like I did back the year the Packers won the Super Bowl. (huh?)

    Brett Favre's backup quarterback that year was Jim McMahon, of `85 Bears Shufflin' Crew infamy.

    Now, any true Packer fan cheers for two teams: 1) The Pack and 2) whoever is playing the Bears.

    So, Jim, welcome to the team. You've been to the big game, you know what to do if we need ya.

    But deep down we know you're still a GOD DAMN BEAR.

    Here's my anti-Tipper speech and a Danny Goldberg link.
    Former Sen. Paul Simon dies

    Jury Finds Janklow Guilty

    Not to gloat or dance on Janklow's political grave, but:

    "Democrat Stephanie Herseth, who ran a surprisingly close race against Janklow in 2002, had announced that she would run again. She would be the early favorite to take the seat, which has been in Republican hands since 1996..." more

    Monday, December 08, 2003

    Gore to endorse Dean, sources say


    Obviously I'm of profoundly mixed feelings about this.

    The objective political analyst in me says: The message here is "the train is leaving the station."

    My inner 22 year old is in some emotional conflict. I wanted to beat the Gores. I wanted them on another team, I wanted to crush that team, and then see them crawling cap in hand to the Deaniacs.

    No. I wanted him to run, so we could BEAT him.

    Anyway, I must begrudgingly admit that this helps. And it's a HUGE diss to Lieberman.

    I still hate the SOB though.
    Lieberman Versus Hollywood

    "Lieberman lacks direct knowledge of the products and programs he goes after. Several entertainment-industry lobbyists and reporters remember a news conference Lieberman and Bennett called in 1994 to condemn media violence. When a reporter asked Lieberman to name a favorite TV program, the senator cited The McNeil-Lehrer Report on PBS. Pressed for the name of an entertainment program, Lieberman hesitated, seemingly unable to come up with an answer. Several people then overheard an aide whispering, Touched by an Angel. Lieberman immediately named the wholesome CBS drama as a favorite..."

    Saturday, December 06, 2003

    Gratuitious Espresso-based Dean bashing

    And it wasn't even David Yepsen!

    "'Dean has a profile that works with the biscotti and latte-sipping crowd but is a much tougher sell for the biscuit and gravy crowd,' said Chris Lehane, a senior adviser to General Clark, as he previewed the kind of attack that would be used against Dr. Dean..."

    I happen to like lattes. And biscuits n' gravy. But if it gets too rough, you might not see them on the same table...

    Friday, December 05, 2003

    Live from New York ... but not in Iowa

    "All four NBC television affiliates in Iowa announced this week that they will not carry this weekend's broadcast of "Saturday Night Live," slated to be hosted by Democratic presidential candidate Al Sharpton..."

    boooo... boooo...

    Thursday, December 04, 2003

    Godfather on a real screen in Iowa City!

    December 6th @ 11 pm in the Illinois Room. Way better than Sharpton on SNL. A can't miss for four bucks - and on the Don's birthday yet!

    SONNY: Ah, say -- what do you think of the nerve those Japs -- those slanty eyed bastards, huh. Dropping bombs in out back yard -- and on Pops birthday ya know.

    FREDO: They didn't know it was Pop's birthday.

    And a Godfather political reference from The General:

    "Kerry's mention of former Secretary of State James Baker as one in a list of models for a "Presidential Ambassador to the Peace Process" drew ire from Gen.Wesley Clark, who said in a statement, "Senator Kerry's suggestion that he might use Bush family consigliere James Baker as a special envoy to the Middle East is offensive … "
    Labor Chiefs Allege Retaliation Threats

    Sounds like the bad old days:

    "Gerald McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), and Andrew Stern, president of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), whose unions have endorsed Dean, charged that, at a meeting Monday that included Missouri Gov. Bob Holden (D), Joyce Aboussie, the vice chair of Gephardt's presidential campaign, issued an "ultimatum" to representatives of the two unions.

    The ultimatum, McEntee and Stern said, also included demands that AFSCME and the SEIU use none of their Missouri members to campaign for Dean in Iowa, that the unions make no independent expenditures in Missouri for Dean and that they not communicate with their Missouri members about Dean's candidacy..."

    Stopped by Dean HQ but did not see a horse's head.

    Wednesday, December 03, 2003

    Dean -- so far -- seems to have no Achilles' heel

    "But after eight years of loyally supporting Clinton against Republican draft-dodger charges, are the Democrats going to retroactively change the rules and declare that only war heroes can run for president? There is no evidence that Dean did anything more than use the same loopholes that millions of other middle-class men employed to gain a medical deferment. At some point there should be a statute of limitations in politics against endlessly debating the personal decisions that anyone made during the wrenching Vietnam years."
    Master Howard Dean

    Interesting story of the prep school days. Not a must read but this paragraph is:

    "...While Dr. Dean and Mr. Bush are both children of privilege, not all privilege is identical. Old money and new money have their own codes. The old-money conservatism was, on a political level, about balanced budgets, diplomacy and—as the 20th century progressed—a strong role for the state. The Texas politics of new money, oil and unfettered capitalism that surrounded Mr. Bush in Midland have moved in the opposite direction. So perhaps Dr. Dean’s insurgency isn’t just on behalf of the Democratic left; he also speaks for a wing of the Republican Party that split from its Southwestern counterpart in the 1960’s, returned in an uneasy truce in the person of George H.W. Bush, and seems to have been lopped off entirely by the current President."

    Monday, December 01, 2003

    Dean campaign a Runaway success

    Notice I didn't go for the obvious headline...

    ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) -- Does Howard Dean love rock ‘n’ roll? He’d better or he may hear from one of his potential national convention delegates.

    A slate of convention delegate candidates from New York made public by the Dean presidential campaign includes Joan Jett, whose 1981 song with the Blackhearts "I Love Rock-n-Roll" has become a rock anthem.

    "This whole process intrigues me," Jett said. "I’m stepping into new territory. It’s very exciting."

    If she’s elected during New York’s March 2 presidential primary, Jett would go to the Democratic National Convention next summer as a Dean delegate.
    Turkey Curry


    1/2 cup onion
    1/2 cup celery
    1/2 cup peppers
    1/4 cup oil/margarine
    2 cups chicken broth (or gravy)
    1 cup tomato juice
    1/3 cup flour
    1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
    1 tsp. curry powder
    4 cups turkey

    Sauté onions, celery, peppers in oil. Stir in flour gravy spices and tomato juice--stir to thicken. Add turkey and simmer while you cook the rice. Serve over rice.