Day by Day

Saturday, September 20, 2003

Council business has concluded and here are the results:

The winning entries in the Watcher's Council vote for this week are The Relief of 9/12 by Commiewatch, and Radiation Contamination in Iraq by USS Clueless.

The full results are here.
No temporary tax is really temporary.

As anyone who has ever comparison-shopped across state lines knows, just the opposite is true. Our state liquor monopoly buys low and sells high. So where is all that profit going?

Much of it is soaked up by the Johnstown Flood Tax, passed by the legislature in 1936 to rebuild the western Pennsylvania town after a devastating - though not nearly as deadly as the infamous flood of 1889 - deluge earlier that year. The flood waters receded 67 years ago, but the tax is still at high tide.

As I reported yesterday, the 'temporary' tax, which over the decades grew from 10 percent to 18 percent, has become a giant, invisible revenue stream, pouring more than $171 million into state coffers in 2001-02 alone. With flood relief long over, the money is earmarked for nothing in particular; it simply helps the state pay its bills on the backs of State Store customers.
Philadelphia Inquirer | 09/16/2003 | John Grogan | Time to speak up on high liquor tax
This is long but a decent read: FOXNews.com - Special Report w/ Brit Hume - Interview - The Connection Between 9/11 and Iraq
Andrew Sullivan says there's good news from Iraq.
GUESS WHOSE NOT GOING TO BE ON CNN ANYTIME SOON?

When former President Clinton was making the case that Saddam was a threat with weapons of mass destruction, chief UN weapons inspector Richard Butler had about as much face time on CNN as Wolf Blitzer. Now that Butler supports what Bush, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, et al have done and is aligned against the Democratic party and their savior, Mr. Indecisive Wesley Clark, something tells me Butler won't be seen on CNN anytime soon.

Atlantic County News: The Press of Atlantic City: "'Don't believe those who say they aren't there just because we haven't found them. Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction,' Butler told the crowd. 'Iraq certainly did have weapons of mass destruction. Trust me. I held some in my own hands.'"
This is quite nice (questionably unsafe for work): FUH2 | F*** You And Your H2
Michael J. Totten has an intriguing piece regarding relative happiness in Israel, the United States, and Canada.

Three different countries were recently polled, and respondents were asked whether or not they were satisfied with their lives. The three countries were Israel, the United States, and Canada.

Now. Ask yourself which of these three countries is probably the happiest, and which is the most distraught.

I would have guessed Canadians would be happiest, followed by Americans, and then Israelis. And I would have gotten it exactly backward.

In Israel 83 percent say they are happy. In the United States 64 percent say they are happy. In Canada only 45 percent say they are happy.

These three polls were administered by different people using different methodologies. Yet that doesn't change the fact that on first glance it appears that terrorism indirectly makes people feel better. Perhaps that's a classic case of the cause-correlation fallacy. But maybe there's something to it.
I think Mr. Totten is leaping here. The commentary to his post is thought-provoking, though.

I think the gentleman known as Rob is closest to truth on this - - Happiness is found only relative to expectations.

Let's say your friends set you up on a blind date. They tell you for WEEKS that there's nothing wrong with this gal; they say men are intimidated by her beauty. You walk into the bar, and Molly Ivins stands to greet you.

How ya feelin'?

Meanwhile, your other friends set you up and tell you "She's got a great personality."

What you think is **==gulp==**, right?

You walk in and you find Ashley Judd.

Life is good. You love life. Can I get a "Hey now!" ???

Me? I fully expect Howard Dean to be our next President. This way, my expectations will be exceeded not matter WHAT happens.


Michael J. Totten: The Paradox of Terror

Friday, September 19, 2003

And then there's this:
One of the State folks was telling me about that big story early in the war when the Iraqis claimed that the US had blown up a busload of Syrians trying to leave Iraq and get back into Syria. Turns out it was a busload of Syrian fighters trying to get INTO Iraq to fight.
Judicious Asininity
This speaks for itself: Blogcritics.org: "NO desire to see the U.S. go"

Another Day

And another dollar. Nice to see that Blogger fixed itself yesterday and finally put up my posts. There's nothing quite like seeing your posts vanish into cyber-limbo, after you typed them and put them up. I guess I can get rid of the word document I have them on. Yay!

OK. So, after reading around, I found a piece at Right Thinking that illustrates quite nicely why the hell I quit being an MP. Take a good look at that picture, and ask yourself this question: "If some suckweasle was tossing a bucket of liquid feces on me, what would I do?" I know what my response would be. They would be finding pieces of that asshole scattered all over the city. A foot here, a forearm there, his head would be WAAAAAAY over there. But as a cop, you can't do that. You have to stand there and take it. Take another look at that picture, in the top right section. See the photographers? They're just waiting for a good shot of "police brutality". They're not taking a picture of that suckweasle tossing a bucket of shit, OH NO, they're going to get the money shots of the cops righteously beating that suckweasle's ass. And then all the protest groups will scream "POLICE BRUTALITY! HELP, HELP, I'M BEING REPRESSED!" and the rest of the world will shake their head at the pictures and say "Oh, those cops are evil!" and the "evil" cops will get warned, or punished, or fired, because they had the audacity to beat on someone who just tossed a bucket of liquid shit on them.

In short, this picture is the perfect diorama of the looney left. And why I hate them.

Two good pieces from the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler today. Remember when we on the right made statements like "What do you think the NAACP would say if we tried to start the NAAWP?" Well, someone's trying it. Needless to say, the NAACP is throwing a fit.

A local NAACP leader says Lisa McClelland's proposed club, which would be open to all races and ethnicities, smacks of racial division, a charge the 15-year-old denies.

Can anyone tell me what's wrong with the above statement? How about open to all races and ethnicities, coupled with someone labeling it racial division?

McClelland says she and some of her friends simply feel a bit slighted since other school clubs cater to specific cultures and races, such as the Black Student Union and the Asian Club. ''It's not racist because we're not excluding anyone, and we're just trying to solve the issues of racial disparity,'' McClelland said. Her ethnic background is American Indian, Latino, Dutch, German, Italian and Irish.

EEK! Watch out, those dastardly American Indian-Latino-Dutch-German-Italian-Irish people are trying to start a "sort of patchy brown with spots of white-power" club! But before you jump to TOO many conclusions, read what her classmates had to say!

Some of McClelland's classmates, however, support her effort.

''It'd be tight because they can learn more about their history,'' said 14-year-old Tyleisha Crooks, a fellow freshman at Freedom who is black.

Elliott Perez, 14, a sophomore at Freedom who is Latino and white, also said the school could benefit from McClelland's club.

''I think it's fair for white people to have their own club, because every other race has their own club,'' he said.

Both Crooks and Perez signed the petition in support of the formation of the Caucasian Club.


Nuff said? Yep. The other piece is on Ted "Chappaquiddick" Kennedy, whos car has killed more people than my gun. It's a bit too long to post every absurd thing that comes out of Teddy's mouth, so I'll just urge you to read the piece. Needless to say, Misha fisks it perfectly.

And last, but certainly not least, is a letter to Kim du Toit from a conservative Democrat. Once again, a good read.

I'm off to take care of all the junk I can't complete during my working week. I'll be back later.
Who's more qualified, Albright or Rice

The Democratic Party's fixation on race and gender explains why black Supreme Court justices can't be conservative, why Hispanic parents should not want their kids to learn English, and why members of both hues should all think alike. It explains how you get Gray Davis supporters shouting "He's a for'ner!" about an immigrant candidate, and how you get the Democratic governor responding that if you can't pronounce the word "California," you shouldn't be governor. It's also how you get the Democratic Party of Minnesota discouraging black Minnesota Supreme Court Associate Justice Alan Paige (search) from running to fill the late Paul Wellstone's (search) Senate seat in last November's elections.

"What did being a woman mean to your term as Secretary of State?" the Time interview asks Albright.

While such questions are not beneath Albright to indulge, they're not relevant. It's the difference between a platform of inclusion and a platform of substance, which is inclusive by happenstance of the country's physical makeup.

That's why when you employ a merit-based system, you get Condoleezza Rice. And when you employ affirmative action (search), you get Madeleine Albright.


Thursday, September 18, 2003

Don't even think about not reading this.
Jim at Right Thoughts has some, errrrr, thoughts about Playboy seeking to capture The Women of Walmart.

Doing what they do best, American Leftists are whining about the unfortunate (to say the least) need for National Guardsmen and Reservists to serve extended tours in Iraq. But they get to the name "George W. Bush" and stop there, presumably because Bush is their favorite tar baby and it suits them to blame him.

Here's what they miss:

Between 1992 and 2000, the Clinton administration cut national defense by more than 500,000 personnel and $50 billion in inflation-adjusted dollars, notes defense policy analyst Jack Spencer. A just-released Congressional Budget Office report finds that military funding would need to increase by $50 billion a year simply to maintain the size of today’s forces.

Since 1992, Spencer notes, the Army has lost four active divisions and two reserve divisions—30 percent of its staff. The Air Force is down by five tactical squadrons, 178 bombers and 30 percent of its active personnel. The naval fleet has gone from 393 ships in 1992 to 316, and the Navy has decreased its active duty personnel by 30 percent. Even the Marines have lost personnel—22,000 since 1992.

Despite this drastic downsizing, the pace of military deployments has increased 16-fold over the last eight years, including missions in Somalia (1993), Haiti (1994), Bosnia (1996), and Iraq and Kuwait (1998). As a result of this over-extension, all four services—Air Force, Army, Marines and Navy—face a shortage of modernized equipment and low morale that is driving more and more troops out of the military completely.
Guardsmen and Reservists are forced into duty because of Bill Clinton's myopia.

Read more: NR091500: U.S. Military Hits Lowest Readiness Levels in Years, Analyst Says
Feel good about your American economy!
The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its measure of factory conditions in the U.S. mid-Atlantic region fell below forecasts but still showed decent growth.

Earlier, the government said weekly jobless claims fell by 29,000 in the latest week to 399,000, better than Wall Street had expected.

The Conference Board, a private research firm, said its index of leading indicators rose 0.4 percent in August, its fourth straight monthly gain.

Taken together, the reports added to evidence that the economic recovery is picking up steam, analysts said. The U.S. economy is expected to grow close to 6 percent in the third quarter.
U.S. stocks rally on economic data, bonds subdued

Found it!

It's no wonder that the liberals seem so screwed up! They're reading from their own version of the constitution! I was able to sneak a copy out of the joint PETA/NAMBLA headquarters. So here it is, in all it's liberal glory!

THE LEFT-WING CONSTITUTION

Amendment I
Congress shall separate Church and State, and ensure that no public agency ever acknowledge the existence of religion. Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, except for such speech as is spoken by white males regarding
women or minorities.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment II
A National Guard and Law Enforcement Agencies, to be established at a yet-to-be-determined time within the next two centuries, being necessary to the security of a police State, the right of certain government employees to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment III
No Woman shall, in time of pregnancy, be barred from killing her child at any point between conception and delivery.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment IV
The right of the people to pretend to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unwarranted and imagined fears, shall be absolute. Rights shall be removed from the citizenry as rapidly as possible to accomplish this, regardless of basis in fact.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment V
No union members shall be held to answer for poor or nonexistent work, and shall be required to receive overtime and bonus pay at an ever increasing rate, ad infinitum.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment VI
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to blame his indiscretions on racism and poverty. The victim shall instead accept responsibility for the crime, and for his part in establishing such a hateful society.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment VII
Progressive taxation shall be the basis of Federal income, so that "The Rich" are not given unfair compensation for their intelligence, hard work, and maintenance of a strong economy.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment VIII
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor jailtime inflicted without rapid parole, nor the death penalty imposed, nor access to cable television or the internet hindered.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment IX
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, is flexible, and shall be denied to the people at Congressional whim as "times change" and human rights become "outdated".
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Amendment X
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are temporary limitations to be revoked at any time by acts of Congress.

This was shamelessly swiped from one of the Amazing Kallini brothers, who posted it on a Right-Thinking thread. That's right, Christopher, I swiped it! HA!
This is typical boilerplate tropical storm reporting but I found this exceprt to be humorous:

But a few thousand hardy — or foolhardy — souls ignored evacuation orders. Virginia Beach police suggested they write their names in permanent marker on their forearms so they can be identified if they are injured or killed.
Yahoo! News - Isabel's Eye Crosses N.C's Outer Banks


Yeah, I know it's late

But it's my day off, so sue me. I'm gonna sit in my bathrobe and drink coffee and take some time to relax. Well, relax a little. I've still found some good pieces over at NRO that I think people should read.

John Derbyshire has a great piece that nails one of the problems with liberalism. It's definately worth a read.

There used to be a fashion for tagging whatever times we were living through with some characterizing appellation like "the Atomic Age" or "the Information Age." We seem to have got out of this habit; but I sometimes amuse myself by thinking up suitable epithets along those lines. Reading the newspapers recently, I have decided that I am currently living in the Age of No Consequences.

One of the guest writers has yet another piece on the Bush-Haters, that group of Leftists who allow their hatred of Bush to overshadow everything else, including the truth.

The Bush haters are doing their best to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory simply because they want George W. Bush to fail, which coincidently won't happen unless America also fails.

Yep, that sounds about right. As a comment on Tim's post below, regarding the NYT article about france, there's only one thing to say. When the New York Times starts pointing out that france acts more like an enemy than an ally, you know that it's reached the point where no one can ignore it anymore. Personally, I think france should be nuked and turned into a parking lot for our British pals.

Perry from Obnoxious Fumes is in my part of the country. If he has the time, hopefully we can get together for a beer or two. He's doing work for Microsoft, so it's a toss up as to whether or not he will actually HAVE the time. Anyways, if he actually has the time I'll try to take a picture or two.

That's all for now. I need more coffee.
Right Thinking points us to a piece by Tom Friedman of the New York Times that spells out France's increasingly obvious yearning to be an enemy of America. Excerpting now:
What is so amazing to me about the French campaign — "Operation America Must Fail" — is that France seems to have given no thought as to how this would affect France. Let me spell it out in simple English: if America is defeated in Iraq by a coalition of Saddamists and Islamists, radical Muslim groups — from Baghdad to the Muslim slums of Paris — will all be energized, and the forces of modernism and tolerance within these Muslim communities will be on the run. To think that France, with its large Muslim minority, where radicals are already gaining strength, would not see its own social fabric affected by this is fanciful.
It's all here.

Found on Right-Thinking
This is quite possibly the best summarization of War in Iraq that I have ever read. It should be required reading for all. I highly suggest that you click the link and take the fifteen minutes required to pore over it.

Nay: I strenuously suggest you do so.

Excerpt:

Complain, yes! Carp! Criticize! Bitch! Moan! But there’s a difference between criticizing the particulars of the Normandy invasion, and insisting that Hitler can be contained with bauxite sanctions. (Imagine if these people had been running papers in the 40s: enough troops? Supply line problems? Plans in place for getting the Berlin power grid up? Oh no! Battle of the Bulge! Quagmire! Bastogne is a mess! Roosevelt lied, Private Ryan died!) To those who sniff “this isn’t World War Two,” I’ll agree: it’s worse. It’s going to be longer, meaner, and it sprawls across every map. Its ultimate severity won’t be apparent to some people until a band of god-bothering raisin seekers sneaks a nuke into Baltimore on a cargo container.

God forbid.

But. If it happens three years into President Dean’s tenure, the same people who wanted Saddam kept in a box - where he was free to spoon out the eyes of his citizens and beat them to death for their failings at an Olympic event - those same people will blame Bush for invading Iraq and radicalizing the Arab world.
LILEKS (James) The Bleat

The Meatriarchy leads us to this relatively new phenomenon: Reflectoporn
American Digest has some harsh words for The New York Times and its pathetic and puerile Maureen Dowd.

We feel, at times, sorry for the Times. Here it is, stuck with having one its prime column slots filled up with recycled tripe week after week simply because there's no editor or publisher strong enough to get rid of the Dowd two-fer. The publisher's core dinner party guests simply wouldn't stand for it. The nattering nabobs of NOW wouldn't stand for it. The Democrats on the Upper West Side wouldn't stand for it. Nope, the Times is stuck with her for the duration.

The decline of Dowd into dotage has been painful to watch. At first, many years ago, she could easily match such comic giants as Bill Maher quip for quip. And she had the added advantage, unlike Maher, of actually being an attractive person. But the years and the unrelenting stress of -- can you imagine? -- 1200 words a week for six figures a year has taken a toll even Botox cannot burnish. And while this toll can be hidden behind the flattering picture that has been consciously not updated for years, it cannot be hidden from those readers in search of something, anything, that signals Ms. Dowd is on the cutting edge of anything other than the shared spleen of the disenfranchised.
You could read the rest of it here.
The LA Times has been caught faking another pro-Democrat poll.
Soldiers from Tennessee paint tribute to the Volunteers on water tower in Iraq.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Darren mentioned it below, so I looked it up, and sure enough yet: The district court in Belgrade has sentenced President Clinton, Secretary of State Madeleine Albright and 13 other top Western and NATO leaders in absentia to a maximum 20 years in prison for the use of weapons prohibited under international law and crimes against the civilian population during last year's NATO air campaign against Yugoslavia.

Uh.... DUH!

"Emphasis on multiculturalism and cultural diversity is getting in the way of proper history and civics educations" is the headline. Gee, ya think?

“What is wrong with social studies today is a large number of those who determine what is taught ... don’t think it’s important to teach what it means to be an American," said Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn

And when teachers publicly chastise the children of military servicemen and women in class, and don't get fired, you know you have a problem. Nice to see that SOMEONE finally woke up.

Teachers’ associations reject the suggestion that educators have failed at teaching social studies and take exception to accusations that social studies teachers and their mentors in academia are attempting to spread an un-American message.

Here's a newsflash for you: the teachers aren't failing ONLY at social studies, they're failing at everything. Our school system needs to be rebuilt, but the Donks are blocking any type of reform.

(former president of the National Council for the Social Studies) Theisen also said publishers can also do more to increase student interest in the topic. “Most textbooks are almost universally bland and uninspiring,” he said

Information can be bland and uninspiring. YOU, as a TEACHER, should be able to TEACH that information to your STUDENTS in a way that allows them to LEARN IT!

Bennett offered several remedies for the problems he saw both in the way social studies is taught and in education generally. Citing the narrowness of opinions on some campuses, Bennett said schools should emphasize greater intellectual, rather than cultural, diversity. He also encouraged parents to become more involved in their children’s education and emphasized the importance of school choice.

“You really should be able to flee a place that you think is corrupting the child’s mind,” he said.


In other words, school vouchers, which the Donks are fighting tooth and nail against, because they know they would lose their monopoly over schools with voucher implementation.

A man in Tennessee held college students hostage today for several hours. How do you think it would have gone if one of those students was armed?

Bad man: EVERYBODY FREEZE! Nobody is going anywhere until I talk to the *BANG*

Teacher: Oh, great. Now I have to clean blood off my desk! Class Dismissed!

Student: Sorry, I didn't realise these Glaser rounds would do that to a man.

Ready for more news? There's a movement in the USA for 16 year olds being allowed to vote. After looking this over, I'm pretty against it. Think of yourself at 16. Then think of yourself again at 18. How much did you change? How much did you learn? How many actions do you regret, and would take back if you could?

In my opinion, the age should stay at 18, and we should lower the damn drinking age to 18 as well. You can vote, smoke, join the military, you should be able to have a beer while you're getting out of your BDU's.

Some of the people who helped Enron cook the books are finally getting charged.

Daniel Bayly, Robert Furst and James Brown were named in a three-count federal indictment unsealed Wednesday in Houston. They were scheduled to appear before a judge later in the day.

Danny, Robby, Jimmy, meet Bubba. He can't do accounting, but he can sure toss a mean salad!

I would go into International news, but everytime I see Arafat's mug pasted on some webpage, I start puking. When will someone take this pus-filled terrorist out of the game? We could have been talking about trade relations between Israel and Palestine right now, if Arafat had taken the deal in 2000. He's never wanted peace, and it's time to treat him as the terrorist he is.

In short, kill him.

I won't get into sports, since my *&()@#$ Mariners fell into their 2nd-half slump. Right now they couldn't hit their own balls with a bat. Thank god the Seahawks are 2-0, otherwise this entire city would be doubling their Prozac dosage.
This is rich.
Lee at Right Thinking has A Question for the Group.
Finally we get to find out: Are they anti-war, or just anti-Bush?

I am so sorry, Gentle Reader, that I am inundating you with ClarkTalk.

But I do have one more, and it's a doozy.

Which brings us to Gen. Wesley Clark, commander of NATO during the bombing of Serbia. Except in the sense that all wars are civil, Clark did not fight in a civil war. Instead, he led an invading force of imperialist invaders in the cynical dismemberment of a sovereign nation so that the avaricious plutocrats who hold NATO's leash could feast on the corpse of its economy. Like both Goering and Harris before him, when Clark's military campaign stagnated he turned in his impotent rage to slaughtering civilians. Warriors kill other warriors. Cowards kill women and children. This despicable coward shames every American. Think Herman Goering, but this time with smarter bombs and bigger allies. That's Wesley Clark, terrorist, coward, and war criminal.
What does terrorism mean? | October 2, 2000 | Nessie Files
Wesley Clark: Indicted for war crimes against Yugoslavia?
George Will sez: Wesley Clark is Not Like Ike.
Rachel Lucas sez: Rachel Lucas: General Wesley Clark (D-USSR) is insane
Is Wesley Clark a kook?

Does Wesley Clark have an imaginary friend? The retired NATO commander and possible Democratic presidential candidate has been muttering darkly for several months that opportunists in the White House seized September 11 as a pretext to take out Saddam Hussein. Clark maintains that he received a call at home the afternoon of September 11, 2001, urging him to say on CNN that the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were connected to Iraq. But Clark has now provided three versions of this story, and they don't add up.
More can be found here.
The Associated Press sez:

Half the States Could See Challenges to Election Equipment if Recall Delay Stands

The postponement of California's recall election because of old punch-card ballots raises pointed questions for many other states, with at least half still using outmoded equipment that critics say treats voters unfairly.

The appellate panel's decision, if upheld by the full appeals court and the U.S. Supreme Court, promises to bring back the complaints of disenfranchised voters that dogged the last presidential election - just in time for the next one.
Find the rest here.

What do you get when you mix a locked van, three locksmiths, a blaring alarm, and chuckling passersby? Peep it: New York Post Online

Ah, Voting

As Tim already said, the coffee tax in Seattle was shot down, by a large margin. Personally, the tax revolt has been ongoing for the past few years in Seattle, with the judiciary siding with the tax-hungry politicians when the politicos bring it to the court. However, the people keep speaking, and taxes keep getting shot down. Last year is was the gas tax, the year before that was taxes and fees on car tabs, and now the coffee tax. The one question I have for the people here is this: If you don't like taxes, why do you keep voting socialists into office?

The other measure on the ballot was an inititive to make posession of small amounts of marijuana a "low priority" for law enforcement. I've got mixed feelings on this one. On one hand, I hate pot. I hate being around people who are high, and my allergies give me a headache whenever I'm near pot smoke. I honestly think that smoking dope effects you a lot more than people say it does.

On the other hand, nobody smokes a joint and shoots up a Mini-Mart. Nobody smokes a joint and goes on a axe-handle killing spree. They smoke a bowl, eat a twinkie, giggle at the crappy movies on late night TV, and go to bed. The argument could be made that alcohol does more damage than pot, both monetarily and physically. Is driving high any worse than driving drunk? And more importantly, on the subject of what law enforcement can do, would I rather the cops chase a dope smoker, or a crack smoker?

Well, that's an easy question, isn't it? A crackhead bothers me more than a pothead. Someone tweaking on meth is more likely to hurt me than a dope smoker. When I was an MP, I never worried about a pothead raging out of control. It was crack/meth/PCP, so on and so forth.

So I'm kinda mixed. Anyone else have thoughts on this?
A Labor (read: Left Wing) leader in Norway is pissed that the country's Foreign Minister went to the Middle East, met with Israelis, but not with Palestinians. Here's a quote from an interested player:

"Such a policy only contributes to make Palestinians even more agitated and extreme. The West is breaking down what little is left of reason. The logic of peace and the art of compromise, the hope of a two-state solution, is vanishing, and it can lead to a bloodbath," Sourani said.
It's the West's fault.
The "good news" is that goverment's jihad against Big Tobacco is working.

The bad news is that thousands of workers are losing their jobs.
I surfed cable news and network talk this morning and saw no news regarding the voters' decision on Seattle's proposed latte tax.

Now I know why. The tax was overwhelmingly voted down.
Andrew Sullivan writes about the Iraqi Flypaper, or what I prefer to term The Honey Pot.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Iraq: A Federal Judge's Point of View

Despite my initial opposition to the war, I am now convinced, whether we find any weapons of mass destruction or prove Saddam sheltered and financed terrorists, absolutely, we should have overthrown the Baathists, indeed, we should have done it sooner.

What changed my mind?

When we left mid June, 57 mass graves had been found, one with the bodies of 1200 children. There have been credible reports of murder, brutality and torture of hundreds of thousands of ordinary Iraqi citizens. There is poverty on a monumental scale and fear on a larger one. That fear is still palpable.


Judge Don Walters

Forget learning from history

I wish some people would get a damn clue from the PRESENT! Why, you ask? Well let me tell ya!

First of all, reason #1,265 why I hate the *spit*french*spit*

The French government has told an airline that it is not to ferry British troops to Basra, a ban that will be seen as reflecting Paris's opposition to the occupation of Iraq.

Folks, it's time to stop pretending that France is an ally. Hell, it's time to stop pretending that France is a friend to any civilized nation. These greedy, power-hungry, backstabbing hipocritical pieces of walking excretement need to be treated with the contempt that they have earned. This isn't history, it's right here, right now. LEARN FROM IT!

Ready for some more? Good, because British teens are now saying that crime pays.

Forty per cent of youngsters across the country believe it is the way to easy money.

And in deprived inner cities 60 per cent agree.

The astonishing figures came on the day a teenage boy lay critically ill after being stabbed for his mobile phone.

A young mum was stabbed seven times on a crowded bus by a mugger after she chased him and grabbed back her handbag.

And a teenage girl told police how she was slashed with a knife and nearly drowned by a gang.



Well then, how do you prevent crime? The teens gave their opinion on that as well!

The survey by insurance giant Norwich Union showed teenagers reckon prison is the best deterrent to crime.

Only five per cent thought community service worked - and fines were backed by just one per cent.


But how can we learn from this lesson? Because we can look at the trends in crime, coupled with events that happened before the crime started climbing.

"[I]n the four years from 1997 to 2001, the rate of violent crime more than doubled. Your chances of being mugged in London are now six times greater than in New York. England’s rates of assault, robbery, and burglary are far higher than America’s, and 53 percent of English burglaries occur while occupants are at home, compared with 13 percent in the U.S., where burglars admit to fearing armed homeowners more than the police." (Reason Magazine, "Gun Control’s Twisted Outcome", November 2002).

"In 1996, the U.K. banned handguns. Prior to that time, over 54,000 Britons owned such weapons. The ban is so tight that even shooters training for the Olympics were forced to travel to other countries to practice. In the four years since the ban, gun crimes have risen by an astounding 40%.


But that's just Britain, right? Uhhhh, not really.

Australia also passed severe gun restrictions in 1996, banning most guns and making it a crime to use a gun defensively. In the subsequent four years, armed robberies rose by 51%, unarmed robberies by 37%, assaults by 24%, and kidnappings by 43%. While murders fell by 3%, manslaughter rose by 16%.

We have the results of gun-control right in front of us. It's not history, it's right here, right now. LEARN FROM IT!.

Hat tip to Zogby Blog.

Comments are down

It's gotta be haloscan, because it's not me. I've been trying to get into them for the past hour, with no luck. I'll have to try back later and hope that they got fixed.

On another note, I had to share this with you, from Kim du Toit's site.

If there's any universal truth these days it's only Democrats and Dictators are afraid of elections. They do anything to block, challenge or fix them at every turn. Gore tried to overturn the Florida election by specious means, in New Jersey they had Senator Toricelli substituted by a more winnable candidate against every law, and in California they are trying to block the recall even though it's constitutional and the public has spoken with a serious mandate

Only Democrats and Dictators fear elections.... Hmmmmm.... Yep!

Update: Comments seem to be working again. Post 'em while ya can, folks, cause I don't know how long it'll last!

Because I want to

I'm going to link to Aaron's Rantblog. I really gotta get me photoshop.

The Doctor is IN

That would be Doc Russia, with his reason for believing that Osama Bin Laden is dead. If the permalink doesn't work, go to the main page and scroll down to Sep. 15th.

if bin Laden were still alive, he would have mentioned Iraq It is that simple. Since he did not, I am inclined to believe that not only is bin Laden dead, but that he has been dead for over 8 months.

Go read the Doc's analysis. I'm inclined to agree with him. Mark Steyn thinks that we got OBL in the first round of bombings in Afganistan. And the longer it goes on, I keep thinking.... if he is alive, why doesn't he prove it? Wouldn't that be his great victory? "Look, here I am, they can't catch me!" But instead we get an old videotape with a poorly dubbed voice-over.

If he ain't found by New Year's Eve, I'm holding one hell of a party.
Sigh.

On July 5 a bomb killed seven recruits for a U.S.-trained Iraqi police force in Ramadi. U.S. occupation administrator Paul Bremer deplored the murder of "innocent Iraqis." Cops who work for a foreign army of occupation are not innocent. They are collaborators. Traitors. They had it coming.
Michael J. Totten: Ted Rall: Left-wing Terror Apologist
CNN's wartime "analyst" will run for President.

As a Democrat. Wesley Clark is expected to make it official very soon.

What Liberal media?
In news that is sure to excite the Linux community, long time Linux developer Todd Stanton got laid.
Beware if you are:

a) married, and

b) surfing instead of preparing for Isabel.
Drumwaster says that Alabama has shown the nation how to control taxes. That's not exactly true. Tennesseans staged a tax revolt in 2001 and today they have a budget surplus.

Compare that to Californians, who have never seen a tax or government program they didn't like and are now buried under a $38,000,000,000 budget shortfall.
This is good and solid. Read it if you want to feel good about your country. Sophoristically Speaking: To kill an American

Found on Drumwaster.
A college cross-country coach saved an opposing runner's life when he dislodged a stone that got stuck in her throat during a weekend meet.
President Clinton said he wanted to be remembered as "The Education President". He's got a good shot at it, I think.

A Beaver County judge has dismissed an appeal filed by the mother of a 13-year-old South Side Area School District pupil who was expelled earlier this year after admitting to having oral sex with another pupil on a school bus.

The mother appealed the June 12 expulsion to county court. She alleged the district violated her daughter's constitutional rights and was not clear in its written policies that oral sex on a bus was unacceptable behavior.
Beaver County Times/Allegheny Times

Quite a legacy, eh?
In case you are curious, Scientific American presents Robert L. Clark of Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering explaining What causes feedback in a guitar or microphone?

What am I saying "in case you are curious" for?? You know you've always wondered. So go find out!

Monday, September 15, 2003

Ambit asks: How Come the Iraqi Body Count Meter isn't Running in Reverse?

Words to live by

Mark Steyn has another excellent essay up, regarding the murder of Anna Lindh, the Swedish foreign minister. While he is shocked by her murder, what really gets to him is that despite the sheer numbers of people standing around, nobody did anything. Nobody stopped the man as he calmly walked out of the crowded department store. Why?

There seem to have been an awful lot of bystanders to Lindh's stabbing -- in broad daylight, in a crowded Stockholm department store, after being pursued by her assailant up an escalator. Granted that most of the people bystanding around were women, it still seems odd -- at least from this side of the Atlantic -- that no one attempted to intervene or halt the blood-drenched killer as he calmly left the store.

Nobody. Did. A. Thing. I can't comprehend that. How can you just stand there as a murderer walks by? How can you even let this sort of thing happen? SHE WAS BEING PURSUED UP AN ESCALATOR AND NOBODY STEPPED IN TO HELP!

This isn't an argument for guns, though inevitably Sweden has gun control, knife control and everything else. It's more basic than that: It's about the will to be a citizen, not just a suckler of the nanny-state narcotic.

When you expect the government to do everything, the inevitable result is that you do nothing. And this is what scares me.

Oh Hell!

Have you ever wondered why the 9th Circuit court is the most overturned court in the land? Maybe it's because they're nothing but political agenda driven socialists, communists, and leftists. Or maybe it's because they don't understand federal law vs. state law, or in short, allowing the people to govern themselves.

SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 15 (UPI) -- A federal appeals court Monday halted the California gubernatorial recall election, ruling the punch-card ballots still in use in some counties are unfair.

So, the people ask for a recall, the people are getting the recall, and this group of shit sucking socialists decide "Nope! You little people are just too dumb!"

Political analysts expect the ruling to benefit Gov. Gray Davis. They assume voter anger at the governor will cool in the coming months and carefully timed campaigns by his challengers will run out of money and momentum.

Why, I'm sure that these fucking dictator-wannabes had no idea that it would have repercussions! Or maybe they realised that if Grey-out Davis gets booted, they couldn't have free reign with trashing the constitution, disregarding legal precident, and basicly shitting all over the people of Californian in their effort to transform the West Coast into their communist paradise!

Can someone please explain to me why we haven't taken this entire group of parasites out back and SHOT THEM yet? The constitution would thank you, trust me!

Hat tip to the Capitalist Lion.

Update: Right Thinking from the Left Coast is having one hell of a discussion about the ruling. What got my attention is the point that someone made on the thread:

So, essentially, what they're saying is that the same punch-card voting machines used to vote Davis in isn't good enough to vote him out.

Do we need any more proof that the 9th Circuit is a steaming crock of shit? Nope, I didn't think so.
The world is an odd place, n'est-ce pas? Check this out:

One of Norway's most highly profiled and right-wing politicians, Carl I Hagen, is urging the nomination of former US President Bill Clinton to be the next secretary general of NATO.
Education rules, don't it?

Through the years, a group of math students at the world-famous Massachusetts Institute of Technology has focused their considerable brain power on a very extracurricular activity: gambling — specifically blackjack.

The students realized that blackjack was the only beatable game in casino gambling — and beat it they did. By the 1990s, the team — whose membership rotated over the years — was making regular trips to Las Vegas and winning big.

"They took over $400,000 in one weekend out of the casinos in Las Vegas," says Gordon Adams, a casino security investigator.
How MIT Students Broke the Bank in Vegas
As is its tendency every week, the Council hath spoken. The winning entries in the Watcher's Council vote for this week are Proud to Boycott by Alpha Patriot, and Don't Tell Me This Is "Progress" by Electric Venom.

The full results are here.

I hate Mondays!

Although I had a good weekend, including meeting another Seattle area blogger and blowing off some rounds at a local range. Analogkid from Random Nuclear Strikes, my girlfriend, another buddy and I all went to the range and worked out some healthy aggression. I've learned a few things from this range session.

1) AK is one hell of a good guy. After my ammo ran out (due to lack of funds) he allowed me to use his Ruger .22 pistol and continue shooting. I owe him a box of ammo.
2) I need to get myself a .22 pistol.
3) I need to get myself any kind of .22! Ten bucks for five hundred rounds! I'm paying 8-9 bucks for 50 rounds of .38 special. That cuts down on range time.
4) My buddy is a better shot than I am with a pistol, and he's been shooting for two months. But I bet that I can hand him his ass with a rifle. Five frigging years in the Army should give me SOME skill, dammit!
5) Did I mention that I need to get a .22?

Anyways, today looks to be busy, so I don't know how much I'm going to be posting. But don't worry. I WILL post later. Until then, have fun!
I am sorry but I cannot add anything to this.

CNN.com - Millionaires populate U.S. Senate - Jun. 13, 2003

Excepting this:

tommcmahon.net

Found on Right-Thinking
Good golly one can find so much information not disseminated by "mainstream media" if one looks. To wit:

Six months before, the world had cheered as the statues of the dictator came crashing down. The Americans had seemed heroic. But now things were going very badly. The occupation was chaotic, the American soldiers were hated and they were facing threats from the surviving supporters of the dictator, whose whereabouts were uncertain.

Washington seemed unwilling to pay the enormous bill for reconstruction, and the president didn't appear to have any kind of workable plan to manage the transition to democracy. European allies, distrustful of the arrogant American outlook, were wary of co-operating. To many, it looked like the victory had been betrayed, since the American values of democracy, equality and well-being seemed unlikely ever to emerge.
Iraq, 2003?

No.

Germany, 1945

Making the news

Here's a photograph of an anti-WTO protestor throwing a rock in Cancun.




Here's a photograph of photographers photographing an anti-WTO
protestor throwing a rock in Cancun.



Made for Media Protests.

Neat!

Seen on Instapundit

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Are you a neoconservative? Take this quiz to find out.

I took the test, and "Yes I Am".

I:

= Want the US to be the world's unchallenged superpower
= Share unwavering support for Israel
= Support American unilateral action
= Support preemptive strikes to remove perceived threats to US security
= Equate American power with the potential for world peace
= Seek to democratize the Arab world
= Push regime change in states deemed threats to the US or its allies

Whom to believe? Dan Rather or some Marine?

In the words of Vincent LaGuardia Gambini: "This is a tough decision you give me here."

Iraqis welcomed U.S. troops, local Marine says
More lies from the White House

This just has to be seen to be believed. It's amazing how far an Administration will go to bolster its political standing, even to the expense of some dead brown people.

Read it all.
In its most recent comment on the issue, State Department spokesman Philip Reeker said last week the administration stands by its initial justification for the bombing. He said evidence suggests that bin Laden was seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction, including chemical weapons, for use against American targets.

"The evidence about the purpose of this chemical plant remains persuasive," Reeker said.
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An administration official said yesterday the plant was targeted based on "physical and circumstantial evidence" and those involved were "totally confident" the information was correct.
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"But I am concerned about the awesome power of a few individuals to make these kinds of decisions in a vacuum," he said. "Because of the unique circumstances of the White House at the time, which was under political siege, hawks were able to convince otherwise cautious people to act."
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"You once could have made the argument that the intelligence community was subverting the policy," he mused. "This is a case that shows a change- the policy subverting the intelligence community. And it underscores how oblivious Americans are to the rest of the world that they can be fed this shit."
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Administration officials have yet to produce any "compelling," let alone "irrefutable," evidence that the bombed complex was a "chemical weapons-related" facility.
This is the kind of thing that makes you wonder if lunatics are running the White House.

I mean, this is the kind of thing that really erodes confidence in an Administration.

It makes you wonder if they will ever stop using war to promote their political agenda.

Clearly, American foreign policy has been highjacked by those who seek to rush to war.

Consequences be damned.

This stuff is getting old, isn't it?

Yes, it is.

Five years old, in fact:

Bill Clinton Bombs an Aspirin Factory
According to the Create Health Centre for Reproduction and Advanced Technology, babies smile in the womb.

Even if they're unwanted, I presume.

Yep

If it weren't for the heat, I'd be living in Texas. I'm a cold weather guy. But when I see things like this, I start to think "It couldn't be all that bad, could it? ( if the link doesn't work, scroll down to Liberal, Conservative, and Texas Answers).

Ah, hell, I'll just swipe it and post it. Just go check out the site.

Liberal, Conservative and Texan Answers

Question:

You're walking down a deserted street with your wife and two small children. Suddenly, a dangerous looking man with a huge knife comes around the corner, locks eyes with you, screams obscenities, raises the knife, and charges.

You are carrying a Glock .40 and you are an expert shot. You have mere seconds before he reaches you and your family. What do you do?

Liberal Answer:

Well, that's not enough information to answer the question! Does the man look poor or oppressed? Have I ever done anything to him that would inspire him to attack? Could we run away? What does my wife think? What about the kids? Could I possibly swing the gun like a club and knock the knife out of his hand? What does the law say about this situation? Does the Glock have an appropriate safety built into it? Why am I carrying a loaded gun and what kind of message does this send to society and my children? Is it possible he'd be happy with just killing me? Does he definitely want to kill me or would he just be content to wound me? If I were to grab his knees and hold on, could my family get away while he was stabbing me? This is all so confusing! I need to debate this with some friends for a few days to try to come to a conclusion.

Conservative Answer:

BANG!

Texan's Answer:

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! click... (sounds of
reloading).

Wife: "Sweetheart, he looks like he's still moving, what do you kids think?"

Son: "Mom's right Dad, I saw it too..."

BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! BANG! click.

Daughter: "Nice group, Daddy! Were those the Winchester Silver Tips?"


Oh hell yeah.

(Update: McClane alerted me to the fact that a Glock .40 carries ten rounds, not nine. Heh. Even more bangs for your buck!)

Blame France!

That's what Aaron over at FreeWill does. Go check out why. It actually makes sense.

Arrogance

I might be the last person to link to the USS Clueless post regarding Iraq. But it's worth reading twice, or three times. If anything, it underscores the failure of the Left to understand Iraq.

They don't understand Iraq because they don't want to. They already think that they know best. They're ARROGANT.

Think about it. How many times have you heard the NY Times scream "quagmire" or "failure"? How many papers and magazines hollar about the hopelessness that is Iraq? I hear it on a daily basis. "Bush's quagmire", or "Iraqi failures", over and over and over, like some sort of new-age mantra. But how many of those writers ever asked Ahkbar Q. Iraqi what they think? Someone finally did.

"Iraqis are optimistic. Seven out of 10 say they expect their country and their personal lives will be better five years from now. On both fronts, 32% say things will become much better."

Does that sound like hoplessness to you?

"Asked to name one country they would most like Iraq to model its new government on from five possibilities--neighboring, Baathist Syria; neighbor and Islamic monarchy Saudi Arabia; neighbor and Islamist republic Iran; Arab lodestar Egypt; or the U.S.--the most popular model by far was the U.S"

That doesn't sound like a country that hates us, if you ask me. So why don't people listen to the Iraqis? Why not let them choose their own fate? To add to all of this is the fact that Iraqi's don't trust the UN, after Kofi Annan feted Saddam in 1998 and stated "This is a man I can work with." The Kurds would rather the UN just stay the hell away after the oil-for-food fiasco, in which much of the money slated for the Kurds found it's way into Saddam's pockets, aided and abbeted in part by the UN. Iraq doesn't want the UN to rebuild the country, so why is the UN being shoved down their throats?

In a word: Arrogance.

In fact, much of the liberal's positions today can be viewed with that word in mind. Hell, many politics on both sides can be viewed in that light, Left or Right. Look at what's happened in California over the past several years. How many initiatives and propositions voted on by the citizens have been overturned or shot down by Sacramento? The people speak, and the leaders tell them to shove off. "Hey, thanks for your vote, but we know what's best for you, so why don't you just shut the hell up like a good little plebe, thanks very much." Mayor Bloomburg in NYC, forcing a smoking ban down everyone's throat whether they want it or not, because HE KNOWS BEST, dammit, why can't you little people see that? Everytime I hear a politician speak on some new great nanny-state program for the good of the people, I want to throw up. I AM THE DAMN PEOPLE, YOU TRANZI SNOT! And I DON'T WANT YOUR DAMN PROGRAM!

But I digress. I suppose the reason I ascribe arrogance to the Left is because of the Left's love for the big-government nanny-state. Social Security, for example. Why the hell is it still going? Why hasn't it been reformed? WTF? By the time I hit retirement age, Social Security will be gone. Poof. Nothing but a pipe dream. If I don't have my own retirement account, I'll be shit out of luck. This is a ponzi scheme of massive preportion. Everywhere I look, the government has it's finger in another pie, and it's taking my money in order to do everything. But the most recent example of this is the War on Terror, and Iraq.

When 70% of the country was supporting Bush in regards to Iraq, the Donks were screaming about how Bush didn't have any support. Excuse me? What planet were you on? When the Donks and the UN scream about the USA's "unilateral" action, they ignored the dozens of other countries who helped us out. I joke about how "unilateral" actually means "without France or Germany", because we had Brits and Aussies and Poles on the ground with us, as well as the support of dozens more. How can you ignore the burden that those countries undertook? How can you ignore the majority of Americans who supported action against Saddam? Arrogance.

And have you noticed that the same people screaming at us for acting in a "unilateral" (hereafter noted as W.ithout F.rance O.r G.ermany) fashion were the first group to scream that the USA needed to deal with N. Korea all by our lonesome? So I guess dealing with a mass-murdering, terrorist supporting dictator with help from countries around the globe (W.F.O.G.) is a horrible bad thing, but dealing with another mass-murdering, terrorist supporting dictator all by ourselves is OK? How can that be? Oh, right, if one of the dictators is giving you sweetheart deals on oil while you sell him military equipment in violation of the UN sanctions you claim to support, then we'd better have your OK before we go in. Is that it? ARROGANCE!

Arrogance, folks. Plain and simple. It's the arrogance of Jimmy Carter, thinking that the N. Koreans would actually follow the terms of the agreement between N. Korea and the USA. "Well, of course they would! I set it up, I brokered the deal, they have to follow it because I'M JIMMY CARTER!" How can someone call President Bush everything but a white boy, and accuse him of horrible crimes against humanity, while having tea and crumpets with Fidel Castro and call him a "great man"? Well, first you have to be an idiot of unbelievable magnitude. But you also have to be ARROGANT.

It's the arrogance of the French, accusing the USA of violating international law, while working to block the USA at every turn, and violating UN sanctions and international law for YEARS. Arrogance. Setting a standard for someone else, and then refusing to follow that standard yourself is the ultimate in arrogance.

It's this "I know better than you" arrogance that sets my teeth on edge. You can hear it every time one of the moonbats breaks out with "So, when are you going to enlist?" question. I'm sure you've all heard it dozens of times. "If you want war so bad, why don't you go?" I DID enlist, you snot-nosed prick! I have my honorable discharge framed and on my wall. What have you got on your wall? A "Free Mumia" poster and a tie-died potleaf silkscreen? It's the arrogance of people who tell you that you can't have guns. Think about that! You can't have guns, because you're not safe enough. You don't know what to do. You can't be trusted to own a gun, or carry a gun! Only the big people can do that, but not you. Senator Fienstien can carry a concealed gun, but not you, the plebian. Sean Penn can carry loaded guns in his car, (and then have that car stolen, loaded guns still inside), but not you, the little person. ARROGANCE!

I suppose that's why I get so mad at the Left. These usefull idiots have never been in my shoes, yet they think they know what's best for me? They want to dictate the terms of my life through their rules and regulations, all the while never having to suffer from the repercussions of the very rules they set into place. ARROGANCE!

I'm still fighting against you, you tranzi pukes. Your arrogance will be your downfall.
Wretchard at The Belmont Club has a few choice words for those Leftists who would have us all lie prostrate to Savage Islam. "They're coming for you, too," he writes.
Grappling With Diversity

I had the opportunity to read a used, wrinkled, but free copy of USA Today on a plane last week, and found this juicy little story that got my mind to thinkin'.

The story is about the U.S. men's team in the World Championships of Freestyle Wrestling. USA Today titles the story "Diversity takes hold of U.S. wrestlers".

Here's a couple excerpts:

In 1964, Bobby Douglas became the first black to wrestle in the Olympics, according to his bio as a member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. This weekend at Madison Square Garden, he will coach the U.S. men's team in the World Championships of Freestyle Wrestling. The seven-member squad includes four blacks, a Hispanic, a white and a wrestler of Filipino descent.

"This is a great showpiece of the American dream," says Douglas, coach at Iowa State. "This is the most diverse freestyle team that we've ever had. It's a great reflection on America, and a great reflection on wrestling."
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But the demographics of college wrestling stand in contrast.
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According to NCAA data, 82.1% of 5,943 wrestlers on men's teams at all NCAA levels in 2001-2002 were white non-Hispanics.
Let's compare in brief the conclusion of this article to the conclusion often reached when examining skin color in the NFL.

In football:

67% of players are Black
6% of teams, run by white owners, have head coaches who are Black
Conclusion: Racism at work

Conversely, in wrestling:

82% of wrestlers are white
14% of the National Team, run by a black coach, are white
Conclusion: Diversity at work

Got that?