Berry's World
Saturday, February 14, 2004

One of my favorite bloggers, Scooter, has the details of what might be the strangest and most ridiculous story of the young year. It's so unbelievable that if I told you the facts, you wouldn't believe me.

By the way, the reason I like Scooter is because he refuses to use a blog service for his blog. While I admire his tenacity, I am concerned with the rumors that Scoot is going to switch over to BlogSpot soon.

UPDATE: As I feared, Scooter has officially sold out.

As if the utter ridiculousness of Tommy Chong doing 9 months for selling bongs while Bill Janklow does 100 days for killing a man isn’t enough, there’s more.

Talk Left is reporting how many of our tax dollars went into putting Chong away:


Talk Left doesn’t have a link, but if the total is correct, it means our government spent almost $45,000 for every day Chong will spend in prison if he does the whole stretch.

On one hand:

A former senior Virginia Air National Guard commander, who served with George W. Bush in the Texas Air Guard, says Bush volunteered for Vietnam combat service but was turned down because he did not have the required flight experience. (Emphasis added)

On the other hand:

Russert: Were you favor of the war in Vietnam?

President Bush: I supported my government. I did. And would have gone had my unit been called up, by the way.

Russert: But you didn't volunteer or enlist to go.

President Bush: No, I didn't. You're right. I served. I flew fighters and enjoyed it, and provided a service to our country. In those days we had what was called "air defense command," and it was a part of the air defense command system. (Emphasis added)

It's a toss up.

I would like to take a moment to send a 'shout out' to the inimitable and unsurpassable Calpundit. I recently found myself in a complex and multifarious jam, and when I reached out to my fellow Southern Californian, blogger extraordinaire Kevin Drum answered the call.

I don't want to go into all of the gory details, but suffice to say it involved a fabricated alibi, a getaway car, and the use of his cabin as a place to lay low for a little while.

Thanks, Kevin.

MSNBC has a story about high school kids promoting Valentines Day eve as the Day Of Purity. The kids, sick and tired of being bombarded by messages of sexual promiscuity, pronounced that they are embracing abstinence. From the looks of the two guys leading the charge in Florida, do you think that abstinence was really their idea?


Tim Blair sarcastically refers to how the NY Times reports on President Bush:

The New York Times, cautious as always not to intrude on the personal lives of politicians, reports on the President:

He had his tonsils removed as a young boy, had appendicitis when he was 10 and at 14 had an operation to remove a cyst from his chest, leaving a scar. At the time he applied for entrance into the guard, he had a hemorrhoid, the location of which was charted with military precision.

While Tim was quick to mock the NY Times' 811 word story which carried the salacious news of President Bush’s bout with an itching or painful mass of dilated veins in swollen anal tissue, it seems he missed 8 pretty important words:

According to records released by the White House…

Of course, the Times could have ignored the records altogether, but then Tim would have been raising a stink about the liberal media not covering the White House.

Clearly, Tim Blair lives in a win-win world.

I’ve kind of fallen off in my weekly reviews of The West Wing, but the show has become so mind-achingly dull, that I’ve really lost interest. However, I do have some observations and some free time, so here goes.

Toby Ziegler either has some rather suspect personal hygiene habits, or he is some sort of speed dresser. In the opening of Slow News Day, Toby is laying in bed at 2:47AM. He gets up, and at 3:06AM he is walking into his office in the White House. OK, let’s give him the benefit of the doubt and say Toby showered before he went to bed. Still, can he put on a suit and tie, and drive from wherever he lives, in the rain mind you, pass through the stringent White House security, and get to his office in 19 minutes? However, considering that Toby spent at least the next 20 hours running around trying to save Social Security, if he didn’t shower in the aforementioned 19 minutes, he had to be somewhat gamy, huh?

Speaking of Social Security, here’s how Aaron Sorkin’s Toby explained the trouble with saving FDR’s legacy:

Because it’s the only way it’s gonna happen! Because you can’t solve Social Security and ask people to run for election at the same time! So why not give politicians some cloud cover and let them be lawmakers for a while? Fifteen people in a room with the door closed; seven democrats, seven republicans, and the President of the United States, who will not have a vote, and they walk out of that room, and with one voice they make a recommendation to Congress and the American people! And nobody knows who was where! [sighs] The only way this is going to happen is in secret. And they only way it’s going to happen is if all the sides are confident in their representation. Otherwise it’s dead.

In John Wells’ version of entitlement programs, Social Security was saved in a single day, shown over a single hour, mainly by a single guy.

Regular viewers may have held out the hope that we'd seen the last of the idiotic idea of a big problem being wrapped up in 47 minutes, allowing for commercials, but said hope was dashed with the very next episode. In The Warfare of Genghis Khan, the biggest nuclear headache the United States has faced since the Cuban Missile Crisis was also wrapped up in 47 minutes, thanks mainly to the Vice President (Gary Cole) who hadn’t been seen in four episodes.

On a brighter note, Ryan Pierce (Jesse Bradford), the annoying intern assigned to Josh hasn't been seen in 7 episodes. On a darker note, he will be back next week.

The season so far has consisted of 13 episodes, and the total number of memorable scenes is holding steady at 2. The number of laughs delivered by The West Wing this year is still struggling to get on the board.

What I wouldn't give to see Lord John Marbury (Roger Rees), or Ainsley Hayes (Emily Procter) or Senator Howard Stackhouse (George Coe) or even Winifred Hooper (Cara DeLizia) make an appearance.

It's absolutely unfathomable how a show could go from the staggering heights of 'You're relieved, Mr. President.' to the sorry state of affairs The West Wing has become.

Wake me when it's cancelled.
Friday, February 13, 2004

A couple of days ago, I took Veronica Mendez Ochoa to task for only showing her outrage after her daughter was arrested at school and led off in handcuffs. Mendez' daughter was one of three pre-teen girls who lied about being attacked to avoid getting in trouble for coming home late. That lie cost Eric Nordmark 8 months in jail before Mendez' daughter finally confessed the truth.

I pointed out that the girls were not likely to face jail time, but the same may not be said for Mendez herself. In today's LA Times, we find that Mendez may soon be arrested for suspicion of obstructing justice. The police believe that Mendez learned of her daughter's deception on Thursday, January 22, but never notified authorities until Monday, January 26.

What's worse is that Mendez didn't call the authorities. Prosecutors had to call her on the 26th wondering where her daughter was, as she was due to continue testifying, and Mendez told them that her daughter went to school because she didn't want to return to court.

Legal scholars think that prosecutors would have a tough time making the charge stick. "A private citizen is not duty-bound to come forward with exculpatory evidence. There may be a moral duty, but certainly not a legal one," said Justin Brooks, criminal defense law professor at California Western School of Law in San Diego.

Of course, in any event, it sure looks like Nordmark has found a new party to name in his civil suit.

My dad has always been my hero. He’s my best friend, and the first person I turn to whenever I need advice or counsel. Even though he now lives 2400 miles away, we still talk on the phone almost every day. Sadly, we happened upon a topic that we are just going to avoid from now on:

DAD: You watch the Grammy Awards the other night?

ME: You know better than that.

DAD: Oh right, you and your list.

ME: You’re damn right. Awards shows, reality shows, the WNBA, telethons, Pauley Shore movies, news stories about lottery winners, and TV court shows. I avoid ‘em all.

DAD: Yeah, yeah, I know. You’re not well. You know that, right?

ME: I’ve heard something like that from a few people.

DAD: It’s more than a few.

ME: So, the Grammys, did I miss anything?

DAD: I’ll tell you, that Beyonce is sexy.

ME: What?

DAD: Oh man, what a body on that girl.

ME: Shut up.

DAD: I’m serious. She’s totally hot.

ME: OK, you’re grossing me out.

DAD: Why? Don’t you think she’s a babe? What’s wrong with you?

ME: No, she’s very attractive, but I really don’t want to talk about chicks with YOU.

DAD: I’ll tell you, if it weren’t for my heart condition, I’d take a shot at her.

ME: For the love of God, will you stop it? I don’t want to hear about the girls you want to bang, OK?

DAD: She’s got a sweet little caboose, I’m here to tell you.

ME: I can’t believe you won’t shut up. You’re totally making me sick over here.

DAD: You know, I’ve always liked women with great breasts. You know, your stepmother…

I just had to hang up. A couple more minutes and I was deathly afraid that my dad, my hero for crying out loud, was going to be telling me, in precise detail, about his dream of playing a spirited game of Escaped Prisoner And The Warden’s Wife with Beyonce. It just gives me the willies.

I know it’s a moot point, anyway. Like he’d have a shot.


**World Exclusive**
**Must Credit the DRUDGE REPORT**

A brand new behind-the-scenes drama is unfolding around slimy Senator John Kerry and his quest to lockup the Democratic nomination for president, the DRUDGE REPORT can reveal.

Democratic insiders are reeling from the news that John Kerry not only saw Fonda’s clearly communistic flick "Nine to Five", but also that he enjoyed the movie!

A serious investigation of Senator Kerry’s trip to Boston’s Coolidge Corner Theatre in 1980 is underway at TIME magazine, ABC NEWS, the WASHINGTON POST, THE HILL and the ASSOCIATED PRESS.


In the latest shameful and treasonous act which threatens to turn the race for the presidency on its head, Democrats are terrified because Senator Kerry saw a motion picture that was primarily and essentially made to bring America to it’s knees.

If that wasn’t embarrassing enough for the Democratic Party, the Drudge Report has confirmed through an exclusive interview with theater manager William ‘Red’ O’Malley that Kerry laughed numerous times.

“Kerry was laughing it up like it was an episode of Hee Haw!” said the 72-year-old O’Malley.

All while Americans were being held in Iran as hostages!

The bumbling Kerry campaign is on such weak footing that Ambassador Carol Moseley Braun is set to announce she is returning to the race for the Democratic nomination, top campaign sources tell the DRUDGE REPORT.


Filed By Matt Drudge
Reports are moved when circumstances warrant for updates
Not for reproduction without permission of the author


Even though I've never met Elecia Battle, I feel perfectly at ease saying that she needs some serious help. Real serious help. Like a prolonged stay in the Silly Suite of the Ha Ha Hotel.

Let's recap Elecia Battle's actions over the last six weeks, shall we? In early January, Battle claimed that she had purchased the winning ticket in the Mega Millions lottery, but lost the ticket outside the convenience store where she purchased it when she spilled her purse.

filed a police report saying she lost the winning ticket, and when that news became public, numerous people scoured the general vicinity of the Quick Shop Food Mart, including the dumpster, in hopes of finding the ticket. Battle was quoted as saying 'I'm praying that someone finds the ticket, brings it forward and gets rewarded and from there we all live happily ever after'.

Battle then admitted to making the whole story up. “I wanted to win so badly for my kids and my family,” a contrite Battle said. Clearly, Battle made a mistake and felt really bad. "I do want the world to know I apologize for any inconvenience," she said.

Battle was then charged and convicted of lying on a police report. She pleaded no contest, and faced a penalty of 30 days to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. In a bizarre way, you had to admire the fact that Battle was owning up to her mistake. She lied, she admitted it, and she's willing to face the consequences.

Not so fast.

Now we find that Battle has changed her plea from no contest to innocent, and wants a jury trial. In fact, Battle and her attorney have expressed in court that they want a change of venue.

Can you imagine the jury on that case? They will probably want to give her the death penalty just for wasting their time.

Here's President Bush answering questions concerning his National Guard service on Meet The Press:

Russert: And we are back in the Oval Office talking to the President of the United States. Mr. President, this campaign is fully engaged. The chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Terence McAuliffe, said this last week: "I look forward to that debate when John Kerry, a war hero with a chest full of medals, is standing next to George Bush, a man who was AWOL in the Alabama National Guard. He didn't show up when he should have showed up…"

President Bush: Yeah.

Russert: How do you respond?

President Bush: Political season is here. I was — I served in the National Guard. I flew F-102 aircraft. I got an honorable discharge. I've heard this — I've heard this ever since I started running for office. I — I put in my time, proudly so. I would be careful to not denigrate the Guard. It's fine to go after me, which I expect the other side will do. I wouldn't denigrate service to the Guard, though, and the reason I wouldn't, is because there are a lot of really fine people who have served in the National Guard and who are serving in the National Guard today in Iraq.

Russert: The Boston Globe and the Associated Press have gone through some of the records and said there’s no evidence that you reported to duty in Alabama during the summer and fall of 1972.

President Bush: Yeah, they’re — they're just wrong. There may be no evidence, but I did report; otherwise, I wouldn't have been honorably discharged. In other words, you don't just say "I did something" without there being verification. Military doesn't work that way. I got an honorable discharge, and I did show up in Alabama.

Now, compare that to President Bush answering questions concerning his possible skullduggery with the sale of his Harken stock:

Q Mr. President, the Democrat have signaled that they are going to make your behavior while a director at Harken an election-year issue. There's an ad out today which is relatively new. I know you said this has been vetted before -- I mean, I've heard that. But would you take on the charge that you were eight months late with an $850,000 stock sale report?

THE PRESIDENT: First, let me take on the notion that people love to play politics. You know, you said the Democrats are going to attack me based upon Harken -- that's nothing new. That happened in 1994. I can't remember if it happened in 1998, or not. It happened in 2000. I mean, this is recycled stuff. (Laughter.) Thank you. (Laughter.) When I made the decision to sell, I filed what's called a Form 144 -- I think you all have copies of the Form 144. It's an intention to sell, and I did so. And -- but as you said, this has been fully vetted. It has been looked at by the SEC. You've got the document; you've got the finding where the guy said, there is no case here. And it's just -- the way I view it is it's old-style politics. And I guess that's the way it's going to be, but --

Q Well, sir, if I might, on the question that the Form 4 was eight months late, why was it?

THE PRESIDENT: You know, the important document was the 144, the intention to sell. That was the important document. I think you've got a copy of it. If you don't, we'll be glad to get you one, that showed the intention to sell. As to why the Form 4 was late, I still haven't figured it out completely. But nevertheless, the SEC fully looked into the matter. They looked at all aspects of it, and they did so in a very thorough way. And the people that looked into it said there is no case. And that was the case in the early '90s; it was the case in the '94 campaign; it was the case in the '98 campaign. The same thing happened in the 2000 campaign -- I guess we're going to have to go through this again in the 2002 campaign. But nothing has changed. And the nothing that changed was the fact that this was fully looked into by the SEC, and there's no "there" there.

Did you notice the similarities? In both cases, which took place a year and a half apart, President Bush blames politics, points out that the issue has been looked into before, names the years that the issues were looked into, repeats over and over that an organization has absolved him of all culpability, and offers a purely non-scientific explanation to both topics ("Yeah, they’re — they're just wrong. There may be no evidence, but I did report..." and "I still haven't figured it out completely").

Strange, indeed.

Thursday, January 22, 2004--Art Garfunkel Arrested On Marijuana Charge

Thursday, January 29, 2004--Art Garfunkel To Fight Marijuana Charge

Thursday, February 12, 2004--Art Garfunkel Pleads Guilty To Marijuana Charge

When reminded that he was going to fight the marijuana charge, a sheepish Garfunkel reportedly replied "Oh dude, that's right. I just totally spaced out."

Jay Leno:

I was watching TV last night. I saw an interesting documentary on the Ninja, the Japanese soldier. According to legend the Ninjas were warriors who could make themselves invisible whenever there was a war. Kind of like Bush and the National Guard.

The White House has now released military documents that they say prove George Bush met his requirements for the National Guard. Big deal, we've got documents that prove Al Gore won the election.

There was one embarrassing moment when President Bush was asked if he was ever A.W.O.L. and he said, 'No, we have Earthlink.'

Actually the White house did say, during the Vietnam war President Bush was listed as a MIA -- missing in Alabama!

The big fight right now between John Kerry and George W. Bush is over their military service. And Bush is on the attack he's accusing John Kerry of ducking time in the Texas Air National Guard once a month by hiding in the jungles of Vietnam.

Democratic strategists feel John Kerry's war record means he can beat Bush. They say when it comes down to it voters will always vote for a war hero over someone who tried to get out of the war. I'll be sure to mention that to Bob Dole when I see him.

President Bush stopped off at a bass pro fishing store to pick up a fishing reel, some line and some rubber worms. He's going to disappear and go fishing. So he must think he's back in the National Guard!

David Letterman:

Bush is having trouble finding his National Guard records from the '70s. Oh sure, but he's got no problem finding photos of John Kerry with Jane Fonda from the '70s.

There was an embarrassing moment in the White House earlier today. They were looking around while searching for George Bush's military records. They actually found some old Al Gore ballots.

Craig Kilborn:

President Bush isn't fazed by other candidates' war records. He said, 'Those guys may have fought in Vietnam, but I created one.'

To refute his critics, the White House released President Bush's military records from '67, '66, '65, '64 ... Oh, sorry, that was his report card from Yale.

As John Kerry sails toward the Democratic nomination, new questions are emerging about President Bush's service in the National Guard, like where he was for six months in 1972 and why he refused to take a routine physical. President Bush has vowed to get to the bottom of this right after Election Day.

The White House released President Bush's military records from the National Guard, which include a rare photo of Bush in an F-102 flown by his chauffeur.

Jon Stewart:

The White House released documents it claims validates the president's (National Guard) service ... When deciphered the documents showed that in a one-year period, 1972 and 1973, Bush received credit for nine days of active National Guard service. The traditional term of service then and now for the National Guard is one weekend a month and two full weeks a year, meaning that Bush's nine-day stint qualifies him only for the National Guard's National Guard. That's the National Guard's National Guard, an Army of None.
Thursday, February 12, 2004

Ryan G. Anderson is being held on espionage charges for allegedly trying to pass information about military capabilities to the al Qaeda terrorist organization.

If the charges are true, I really don't know which is worse; trying to help al Qaeda, or offering to pass the information to al Qaeda agents through an Internet chat room.

What a bonehead!

When will people learn that Internet chatrooms should only be used to try and score with morally bankrupt women?

I'll admit that I'm behind the curve on the 'Kerry Intern Problem', so I have no comment on it one way or the other. But I'll also admit that Sean Hannity had me in stitches today. While interviewing Matt Drudge, Hannity proclaimed:

Matt, I've known you a long time, and I've never known you to be wrong.

I was laughing so hard, I nearly had to pull over so I could regain control of my senses.

I had been thinking that a Kerry-Edwards, or a Kerry-Clark ticket would be pretty good, but it looks like Senator Kerry doesn't agree. At least where a Kerry-Edwards pairing is concerned.

I'm sorry for the paucity of posts, but one of the longtime residents of Berry's World, my cat Maddy, has been experiencing some health problems that has required several trips to the vet.

It appears that Maddy is beginning to show signs of rebounding, and hopefully things can get back to normal.
Wednesday, February 11, 2004

3 little girls from Orange County were arrested for lying about being attacked by a homeless man, Eric Nordmark, and didn't confess until Nordmark had spent eight months in jail.

But NOW, the mother of one of the girls is upset.

“They handcuffed her, with her arms behind her back. She was scared and started shaking. She's a little girl, but they handcuffed her like she was a murderer.” Veronica Mendez Ochoa, mother of one of the girls told the LA Times.

Leaving aside the laughable comparison to how murderers are treated, I do wonder where the outrage on the part of the parents has been. The day before the girls were arrested, local newscasts were quoting them as saying they 'were not sorry at all' in profanity-laced statements.

The girls are not expected to face any jail time for their actions, so maybe it was good for the police to put a little fear in them, as it's clear the parents haven't done so.
Tuesday, February 10, 2004

With General Wesley Clark pulling out of the race for the Democratic nomination, my streak of supporting the eventual Democratic nominee ends at three. I was riding a wave of Clinton, Clinton, Gore before Michael Moore screwed me and General Clark over.

So, who did I support in '88 before Governor Dukakis won the nomination? Well, I don't really like to talk about it much, so I'll just say my picks from 1988 through 2000 make up a political palindrome.

In surprising news, Harvard Business School has seen an uptick in applications since President Bush appeared on Meet The Press on Sunday.

In an interview with Tim Russert, President Bush explained how he got to leave the National Guard 8 months early:

Russert: You did — were allowed to leave eight months before your term expired. Was there a reason?

President Bush: Right. Well, I was going to Harvard Business School and worked it out with the military.

Since the interview was broadcast, Harvard Business School has received 135,000 applications.

From the Larry King show, 10-7-92:

KING: What do you make of the Clinton Moscow trip thing? You think that's...

BUSH: Moscow?

KING: He says it was just a student trip.

BUSH: Larry, I don't want to tell you what I really think because I don't have the facts. I don't have the facts. But to go to Moscow one year after Russia crushed Czechoslovakia, and not remember who you saw, I think -- I really think the answer is level with the American people. I made a mistake. I've said I made mistakes. But don't try to -- you can remember who you saw in the airport in Oslo, but you can't remember who you saw in Moscow.

KING: In other words, you're saying...

BUSH: I'm just saying level with the American people on the draft, on whether he went to Moscow, how many demonstrations he led against his own country from a foreign soil -- level. Tell us the truth and let the voters then decide who to trust or not.

This headline just makes me laugh:

Report: Dr. Atkins Was Obese, Had Heart Disease

I've only known one person who was on the Atkins diet, and he was as big as a Datsun. He was always bragging about how he had lost 75 pounds, and he always got miffed when I would say 'Look behind you.'

As was pointed out here a little less than two weeks ago, most new talk shows see a decline in viewers in the weeks following its debut, and Dennis Miller is proving the rule rather than the exception.

After grabbing 746,000 viewers for his debut show featuring Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Miller is now averaging 373,000 viewers per night. The falloff is being compared to Phil Donahue’s run on MSNBC which ended in cancellation.

To paraphrase an old Miller line, Dennis is only beating me by 373,000 viewers a night, and I don’t even have a talk show.
Monday, February 09, 2004

While some people may be wasting their time worrying about President Bush's military records, American Experience tackles a serious issue:

PBS 28 Feb 09 09:00pm
Series/Other, 60 Mins.

"Tupperware!", Episode #1606.
Actress Kathy Bates narrates the history of Tupperware.

Don't even try to call me, as I'm unplugging the phone.

Tucker Carlson opened Crossfire today with:

Well, since September 11, you have often heard Democrats whine that whenever they criticize this administration's foreign policy, they are called unpatriotic. That is a lie. Over the past two years, no elected Republican has attacked his political opponents as unpatriotic or un-American, not one. Instead, the patriotism- mongering has come exclusively from the left.

The Hill reported last October:

Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) last Friday strongly rejected Sen. Trent Lott’s (R-Miss.) contention that it is “unpatriotic” to vote against the Iraq supplemental spending bill.

Lott told The Hill a no vote on the measure would be “unpatriotic” because of the money for the troops included in the bill. “You’ve got a problem” if you can’t support this, he added.

The Iraq supplemental spending bill passed 87-12, meaning that there are 12 senators who, according to Lott, are “unpatriotic”. It has been long rumored that Senator Trent Lott is an elected Republican.

People were suspicious when President Bush tossed in this 'off-hand' remark to Tim Russert:

We did so in 2000, by the way.

Today, Scott McClellan confirmed those suspicions. From today's White House Press Gaggle:

Q I've got to ask you, too, about military records. The President committed yesterday to releasing additional records. Is there any effort by the White House, the RNC, the campaign to come up with new records, new notes --

MR. McCLELLAN: This issue, as the President pointed out, goes back to his first campaign for governor, it goes back to the 2000 campaign. You know, we made everything we had available during the 2000 campaign. I think that one of the things you can look at that will help address these questions is the annual retirement point summaries. And we previously made those available during the 2000 campaign. They show that the President fulfilled his duties, and that is why he was honorably discharged.

Q Every point summary is available -- payroll stubs --

Q Russert asked a more specific question, tax returns and payroll stubs, and the President's answer to that was, yeah.

MR. McCLELLAN: I don't think -- I think the President, like most Americans, does not have his tax returns from 33 years ago. In terms of pay stubs, during the 2000 campaign we checked with the Texas National Guard and they informed us that they did not have them. Obviously, if there's anything additional, we'll keep you posted.

Q You checked during the 2000 campaign, or you checked in recent days?

MR. McCLELLAN: We checked during the 2000 campaign, yes.

Q It's your interpretation, though, that everything that could be released has been released?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, everything we had we made available. And like I said, if there's more, we'll do our best to keep you updated on that.

Q But you're not looking for anything else at this point?

MR. McCLELLAN: Well, if there's more that comes to our attention, we'll make sure we make that available.

Don't you worry. If WE find something that WE feel is necessary, WE will let you know.

The idea seems so pedestrian.

A dating show in the UK brings together six men, including a Royal Marine commando, a ski instructor and a former lifeguard, to win the affections of Miriam and they call the show There's Something About Miriam. Pretty dull by the standards set by My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiancé, right?

After a fortnight and a half of the guys competing to kiss and cuddle with Miriam, she finally picks the winner. After such a mundane reality show, why would one of the guys punch the producer, and all of them sue the maker of the show?

Turns out the fellas had a tiny, little problem with the fact that Miriam was a transsexual who had not yet had a surgical sex change.

Some people can be so touchy.

In Suddenly, Democrats Dare To Believe, David Westphal, of the Sacramento Bee, had such a good hook for his Sunday commentary that he didn't let little things like facts stand in his way. Westphal opened with:

All of a sudden, Democrats are starting to believe they can catch George W. Bush.

Of course, you have to give Westphal credit, as it only took him four paragraphs to point out that even though the Democrats are trying to 'catch' President Bush, BOTH Senator John Kerry and Senator John Edwards are leading the president in the most recent polls.

Westphal did issue a warning to the jubilant Democrats:

The president has raised more than $125 million in campaign donations, and the Bush campaign is expected to begin spending it in the next month or two on a media blitz the Democratic nominee will be unable to match.

When do you think President Bush will unleash his spending? Well, if Westphal had wanted to check, he would have found that the spending has already begun. According to OpenSecrets, President Bush has already spent over $31 million dollars, which is more than any other candidate for president.

Luckily, Westphal was writing an opinion piece, so facts were merely optional.
Sunday, February 08, 2004

In an effort to promote his tough-guy image, Matt Welch's warblog is adorned with a picture of Matt (sans spectacles) in a cowboy hat. Unfortunately, Matt's manly image is taking a beating, as he has been reduced to a whimpering mass of quivering flesh by a cherubic, 70-year-old Congresswoman.

Come on, Matt!

Charles Bronson wouldn't act this way. Good Lord, Charles Nelson Riley wouldn't act this way!

Several bloggers have made note of Peggy Noonan panning President Bush's performance on Meet The Press, but what might be the most telling part of the column comes much later.

Noonan explains that President Bush's supporters expect him to do well while giving a speech, 'But his supporters don't really expect to be inspired by his interviews.' Peggy says when President Bush is being interviewed, she doesn't expect him to be 'eloquent, in the moment, marshaling facts and arguments with seeming ease and reeling them out with conviction and passion.'

Basically, Peggy Noonan's only requirement from President Bush is that he can read.

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