Aw Geesh

Best of luck, Amy, and I hope they can cure it completely

The news that Amy Mickelson has breast cancer stunned and saddened the sports world and put the playing schedule of her husband, 36-time PGA Tour winner Phil Mickelson, on hold indefinitely.
A brief statement released Wednesday morning by Gaylord Sports, Mickelson’s management company, said: “More tests are scheduled, but the treatment process is expected to begin with major surgery, possibly within the next two weeks.”
Mickelson withdrew from this week’s HP Byron Nelson Championship and has suspended his Tour schedule indefinitely, which casts doubts on whether he’ll play the U.S. Open at Bethpage Black on Long Island June 18-21. Mickelson became an East Coast favorite at the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage, where he finished second to Tiger Woods. In 18 U.S. Open tries, he’s finished runner-up four times, most recently at the 2006 Open at Winged Foot, but he’s never won the event.

I pray they caught it quickly enough.

Presbyterian Update: Terror Plot Broken Up

Oops, sorry, I meant “Man-Caused Disaster Averted”

The FBI and NYPD busted a four-man homegrown terror cell Wednesday night that was plotting to blow up two Bronx synagogues while simultaneously shooting a plane out of the sky, sources told the Daily News.
The idea was to create a “fireball that would make the country gasp,” one law enforcement said.
Little did they know the plastic explosives packed into their car bombs and the plane-downing Stinger missile in their backseat were all phony – supplied by undercover agents posing as Pakistani militants linked to Al Qaeda.

And why was this MCD plotted?

“They wanted to make a statement,” a law enforcement source said. “They were filled with rage and wanted to take it out on what they considered the source of all problems in America – the Jews.”
The group’s alleged ringleader, James Cromitie, according to the complaint, discussed targets with an undercover agent. “The best target [the World Trade Center] was hit already,” he allegedly told the agent. Later, he rejoiced in a terrorist attack on a synagogue.
“I hate those motherf—–s, those f—ing Jewish bastards. . . . I would like to get [destroy] a synagogue.”

A great note of thanks to the FBI and other law enforcement folks involved in averting this. Any other info on these Presbyterians?

Sources said the four men were arrested after a year-long investigation that began when an informant connected to a mosque in Newburgh said he knew men who wanted to buy explosives.
…The suspects – three U.S.-born citizens and one Haitian immigrant – at least three of whom were said to be jailhouse converts to Islam, were angry about the deaths of Muslims in Afghanistan, sources told The News.

You don’t say. Well, neither does CNN. To their credit MSNBC, ABC News and CBS all mention that seemingly relevant information.

The Mets Play In Flushing

Here’s the proof

A hapless Mets fan tried to make a diving catch when her gold tooth fell into a Citi Field toilet — and got her arm stuck in the commode.
The unidentified woman’s bizarre Flushing adventure happened during last Wednesday’s game against the Atlanta Braves, sources said yesterday.
It’s unclear how long she was trapped screaming in the john, but stadium security guards and emergency medical personnel eventually showed up.
But they could not pry her loose on their own.

There’s no word on whether she stepped on third.
(via HotAir)

President Obama Has “Tough” Negotiations With The Somali Envoy

…about Piracy

This Is Pretty Cool

The “Missing Link” has perhaps been found

Scientists have unveiled a 47-million-year-old fossilised skeleton of a monkey hailed as the missing link in human evolution.

This 95%-complete ‘lemur monkey’ is described as the “eighth wonder of the world”
The search for a direct connection between humans and the rest of the animal kingdom has taken 200 years – but it was presented to the world today at a special news conference in New York.
The discovery of the 95%-complete ‘lemur monkey’ – dubbed Ida – is described by experts as the “eighth wonder of the world”.
They say its impact on the world of palaeontology will be “somewhat like an asteroid falling down to Earth”.
Researchers say proof of this transitional species finally confirms Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, and the then radical, outlandish ideas he came up with during his time aboard the Beagle.

If this turns out to be true I’m sure there will be many folks who will proclaim that this “proves” religion to be false, but it does nothing of the sort. I have a strong Christian faith but I’ve never had any problem with evolution or science in terms of them being “incompatible” with my religion.
I can see the Almighty trying to figure out a way to explain molecular biology to the ancient Hebrews and thinking “you know, I better go with the Genesis bit…”

House Speaker To Step Down

Sadly, it’s the House Of Commons’ Speaker

Michael Martin is set to announce he will stand down as Commons Speaker in a statement to MPs at 1430 BST.
Mr Martin has been criticised over his handling of the furore over MPs’ expenses and a motion of no confidence in him has been backed by 23 MPs.
He also faced open challenges to his authority in the Commons on Monday.
It is understood he plans to step down “soon” rather than immediately. It is the first time in 300 years a Speaker has been effectively forced out.

Well, it’s a start.

And That’s Why They Play the Game

Because you can’t be THAT stoopid and a millionaire doing anything else…unless you’re Paris Hilton.

When the Super Bowl XLIII champion Pittsburgh Steelers make their trip to the White House Thursday, one of the players largely responsible for their victory over the Arizona Cardinals says he won’t be attending.
Linebacker James Harrison said he’ll pass on the invite from President Barack Obama.
…”This is how I feel — if you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don’t win the Super Bowl.

As far as I’m concerned, he [Obama] would’ve invited Arizona if they had won,” said Harrison.

Sigh

Totally uninspired today, so I will leave you to contemplate the glory that was the Battlecruiser.
Is it the weekend yet?

Well, That’s Sad

The Hawk Checks Out

May 18, 2009: The American carrier, USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63), after a four month delay, was finally decommissioned in Bremerton, Washington on May 13th. The Kitty Hawk served for 48 years and 13 days.

That name is an instant memory flash every time. I can immediately smell the wet heat of a Subic Bay afternoon and the shippy stink of the old girl, her naked flight deck broiled and baked in the sun.
I’d been at Dungaree Beach when her birds flew off and then overhead on their way to Cubi Point NAS (the end of the runway was directly behind me). What an incredible, exhilarating, deafening twenty minutes that was! The section flights of Tomcats and Intruders at full throttle, each trying to outdo the previous with the snap of their banks and the precision of their formation. All, I swear to God, at what seemed to be about 100 feet off the deck. Flippin’ rippled the water around my knees.
And then she came into the mouth of the bay, making her way majestically to the waiting tugs, their fire hoses spraying a mad welcome, like a hundred city fountains gone berserk.
A day later, a couple of us had wangled a tour. One of my most persistent memories is catching the tips of my fingers in the chain links that pass for railings in the narrow stairwells ~ the same chain links that the ship’s crew slid up and down like they were greased firepoles. One of those skills you pick up, I guess. Inside, she was cramped, smelly, dangerous for both head and shin…and amazing. She hummed with life in port, even with half her crew out in town and the rest trying to work through the hangovers. It was my first taste of a living ship ~ a vastly different experience than the USS North Carolina in her museum stillness.
Some of the guys with me had been out on her when our sister squadron had done carrier work-ups, so that made the tour a little more personal. They dragged me to where the Marines are berthed and, sure as shittin’, there was arresting gear stuff running under the racks, in a not-so-subtle bit of Navy “take that”. The cable, as you can imagine, runs damn near twenty-four-seven during ops, so, as a Marine, even if your time on deck is over? You get treated to the cable being pulled out and rewound in your sleep.
When at last I got back out on deck, the heat hitting my face like a mugging and blinking at the brilliant light, I witnessed the most indelible memory maker of the whole couple hours. With all the birds at Cubi, the flight deck was just bare naked acres of bubbling, oozing asphalt and aviation fluid spills, heat shimmers and mirages. Dantesque. All I could think about was my flip-flops melting on my way to the boarding ladder. Or worse ~ getting glued to the deck, pulling off mid-stride and my bare puddies…oh, ick. Mentally shaking myself not to act like such a ‘girl’, I glanced up at the stern. And there, in the middle of that primordial morass, was a sailor. Sunbathing. In his skivvies. Laying on a miniscule white military towel (for the uninitiated: a couple inches larger than a kitchen towel), with his overhanging, unprotected calves and shoulders on the festering deck, a ball cap under his skull and the fumes of his profession rising around him like a curtain. Complete with tiny boombox nestled on a plastic sack.
That’s what I remember about the USS Kitty Hawk.
Sleep well, old girl. And thank you.

Yes, Yes We Cancun

A room with a flu

Hotels in Mexico’s coastal resort of Cancún, one of the world’s most popular getaways, are adopting extreme measures as holidaymakers scramble to cancel bookings in the wake of the swine flu scare.
Visitors to one hotel, The Royal, are being offered a “flu-free guarantee”: anyone who contracts the flu virus within 14 days of checking out gets three free annual holidays.
Discounts abound elsewhere in Cancún, where Bestday, a Mexican-based internet broker, says four in five of the 31,000 hotel rooms it monitors in the city – and in the Riviera Maya coast to the south – are empty. The figure was one in five before the outbreak.

I’m sure their bookings were already down due to the economic mess.

It’s 10 P.M.

Do you know where your kids are?

TIJUANA, Mexico — The bodies of four U.S. citizens were found strangled, beaten and stabbed in a van in this border city, two days after they reportedly left their Southern California homes for a night at the Mexican clubs, U.S. officials said Thursday.
The victims, ages 19 to 23 years old, were found tied up on Saturday, but their deaths were not reported earlier because they were under investigation, said Fermin Gomez, an assistant state prosecutor in Baja California.

For God’s sake, stay on the north side of the border, kiddies.

TARP: Taxpaying Americans Rear-ended Purposely

In times like these, it’s good to know who’s on your side. We can eliminate a couple agencies, Congress and the President right off the bat, thanks to articles like this. And recent testimony from bail-out-ees like AIG’s Liddy, which tells us more about the AIG machinations than we EVER wanted to know. Basically “The Fed made me do it!” Do what, you ask? Overpay to close out AIG’s credit default swaps, perhaps?

..Counterparties received 100 cents on the dollar for the CDOs, even though the prices paid by the Federal Reserve suggest that the bonds were actually worth 47 cents on the dollar.
“The latest admission from the (defunct yet living) company [AIG] is that well over $100 billion in taxpayer monies has gone to counter-parties at 100 cents on the dollar – no haircut, no penalty, no cost to those who made bad bets or chose their counter parties poorly,” notes Barry Ritholz, one of the sharpest minds on Wall Street who runs the must-read website the Big Picture Typepad.

I watched David Faber from CNBC go after this yesterday morning. He notes $180B of taxpayer moneyto AIG and asks how much went “NOT to bail out AIG, but it’s counterparties?…When the Fed went in and AIG took the money and closed out these credit default positions, why did it do so at par, when many of them were trading at steep discounts and could therefore have been unwound at numbers that would have been a lot less cost” to AIG and, ergo, the American taxpayer. Faber was listening when AIG’s Liddy testified before Congress Wednesday and was asked that exact question…and the answer to that is just horrific.

Liddy: “The FEDERAL RESERVE decided that we should pay a hundred cents on the dollar…that a hundred cents on the dollar should be paid in the settlement..”
Congressman Issa (R-CA): “But these were credit default swaps that I could have bought for a fraction of that on the open market, to the extent that somebody was floating them at the time, right? So we paid more than their current value at the time we paid them off.”

Liddy: “I believe that’s what the FEDERAL RESERVE decided was in THE BEST INTEREST OF THE FINANCIAL SYSTEM.”



Note to self: Geithner was the NY Fed president during all this. Another interesting footnote: Goldman Sachs was one of the beneficiaries of the Fed’s generous repayment policies in our name. For starters, ‘interesting’ because…

..Even more intriguing is Geithner’s informal brain trust, loaded with Wall Street luminaries. Since coming to the Fed in November 2003-recruited by then-New York Fed chairman Pete Peterson, co-founder of the Blackstone Group-Geithner has learned the ways of the financial industry at the feet of some of its biggest legends. He was almost immediately taken under the wing of Gerald Corrigan, a gregarious former New York Fed chief who is now a managing director of Goldman Sachs.

…especially when you consider

…Digging deeper, it was likely Paulson who orchestrated the entire show and made the decision to pay claims at par, knowing that it would be a simple yet effectively hidden manner of further re-capitalizing Wall Street (and Goldman) without pesky questions from Congress. We have been told there were 4 attendees at the meeting to decide AIG’s fate: Paulson, Lloyd Blankfein (CEO of Goldman Sachs), B-52 and Geithner. That is Paulson’s crew, and any decisions emanating from this meeting are ultimately his responsibility, no matter how it is spun to Congress months later.

If I thought money in the mattress would do any good, I’d say go for it.
But the way things are now, it won’t be even be worth the effort to stuff it.

Spending Is Bad, M’Kay?

…says the man who’s spent more than anyone, ever

May 14 (Bloomberg) — President Barack Obama, calling current deficit spending “unsustainable,” warned of skyrocketing interest rates for consumers if the U.S. continues to finance government by borrowing from other countries.
“We can’t keep on just borrowing from China,” Obama said at a town-hall meeting in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, outside Albuquerque. “We have to pay interest on that debt, and that means we are mortgaging our children’s future with more and more debt.”
Holders of U.S. debt will eventually “get tired” of buying it, causing interest rates on everything from auto loans to home mortgages to increase, Obama said. “It will have a dampening effect on our economy.”

This is the guy who is currently spending $150 for every $100 of projected revenue.
With all due respect…what an ass.

“Most of what is driving us into debt is health care, so we have to drive down costs,” he said.

No, it’s rampant, out-of-control-drunken-sailor spending by the bastards in government, on both sides of the aisle.

As Stewie Says: “This is So Deliciously Evil…”

“…it HAS to be fattening!

Hoyer Declines to Back Up Pelosi’s Claim That CIA Misled Congress
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer does not vouch for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s accusation against the CIA.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s deputy in the House declined to back her up on her stunning claim Thursday that the CIA misled Congress about its use of enhanced interrogation techniques.
Rep. Steny Hoyer, the House majority leader, panned the recent criticism of Pelosi as a “distraction” during a verbal tangle with Republican Whip Eric Cantor on the House floor.
But when asked directly whether he shares Pelosi’s belief that the CIA misled Congress, he backed off.
“I have no idea of that. I don’t have a belief of that nature because I have no basis on which to base such a belief,” Hoyer said. “And I certainly hope that’s not the case. And I don’t draw that conclusion.”

Your Tax Dollars At Work

Bailing out the Chinese

DETROIT (AP) – As thousands of General Motors workers await word on more U.S. plant closures, reports that the company plans to import Chinese-made vehicles to the U.S. have created a political problem for the automaker and the White House.
The reports, which GM will neither confirm nor deny, could mean trouble because GM is supported by $15.4 billion in U.S. government loans, largely due to the Obama administration’s desire to preserve the company’s 90,000 U.S. jobs.
The United Auto Workers charged last week that the Detroit automaker intends to almost double over the next five years the number of vehicles it imports to the U.S. from Mexico, South Korea, China and Japan.
“GM should not be taking taxpayers’ money simply to finance the outsourcing of jobs to other countries,” Alan Reuther, the union’s Washington lobbyist, wrote in a letter to U.S. lawmakers.

Pinch me hard sweet baby jeebus, because I find myself agreeing with the UAW.
I also feel like barfing.

Oh, NOOOEESSSS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The fourth picture. Can’t be. C.A.N’.T.
Not…

Dobby?!?!?!

You Said “Engage Auto Pilot”?

Silly me! I thought you said Eroto-Pilot

LOS ANGELES — A helicopter pilot who was videotaped receiving oral sex from a woman as he flew her around San Diego acted so recklessly that his license must be revoked, the National Transportation Safety Board said. The actions of David Martz were so dangerous, the NTSB concluded in a written ruling, that they put the lives of everyone on his aircraft and on the ground below him in danger.
…In rejecting his appeal, the NTSB said both Martz and the woman unfastened their safety restraints during the flight and that her body blocked his access to controls vital to operating the aircraft in an emergency.

Let the jokes begin.
Update: We have an exclusive photo from inside the helicopter:

Quote of the Day

“The basic rule of thumb is simple: Don’t stick things in your mouth if you don’t know what they are.”

Be ye president or peasant ~ truly words to live by.

Since Woman Was Made From Adam’s Rib

(Or so they tell me) it seemed only fitting that I make some fine swine baby backs for my Bride for Mother’s Day…9 pounds worth

these porcine suckers were large enough

that I figured it was best if I cut them in half

and then coat them with the dry rub

then on to the smoker

for 3-4 hours of hickory-steeped pollution infusion!

Finger-lickin’ good.

Why Cut Spending

…When you can tax fun?

If you make big bucks — or enjoy alcohol, cigarettes and Coke — the government might hit you up to pay for fixing the nation’s health care system.
On Tuesday, the Senate Finance Committee peeked into vending machines and liquor stores, company payrolls and health savings accounts, looking for a mix of tax increases and spending cuts as a way to pay for a health overhaul — which could cost more than $1.5 trillion over 10 years.
…People who like the tax-free status of their company health benefits could be asked to ante up. Money in the pot: more than $700 billion over 10 years.
Treasure the tax benefits from your health savings account? Some experts say the accounts encourage “excess consumption” of health services — and committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) agreed they’re worth a look. Money in the pot: $60 billion over 10 years.

What encourages “excess consumption” of health services is making them free.
Update: And of course I see the Fearster was on this yesterday.
Oh well, that will teach me to go out of town for a few days…

WHERE Do They GET This?

The Obama administration is defending its claim that the $787 billion economic stimulus plan will save or create 3.5 million jobs before 2011

From the economic school of: “There is no spoon problem.”

So, While We All Know

this is true

…”Blaming George” still makes a tingle run up the legs of all the hymn-singing true believers, but outside the embrace of the cult, that tingle is beginning to sting instead.

This is Mr. Obama’s government now.

…the bet’s on when they finally admit it.
I say they try to take the…

…Anticipating D-Day, Peter Orszag, the president’s budget director, said Monday that the scarier than expected economic news – the deficit out of control, tax receipts down and costs of bailouts and “stimulus” plans up – is all the fault of George W. Bush:

It’s an economic crisis President Obama inherited.

…line clean through at least 2010, especially if things go as south as they’re looking to right now.

In Light of the Critical Eye

…turned to the LOUSY Airforce One photo, I’d like to remind all what a REAL military aviation photo looks like.

Read more »

I Really Needed This On Friday


Indeed I did.

Hey Paco

If Oscar ever needs someone to talk to…

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