"the dumbest blog i've ever seen."

    "Get out a little more dude."

    "Is it more conservative to write about Red Bull, spelling errors, or whining about liberal teachers?" -Former contributor

    "a well-kept and activist-orientated blog"-Chris Collins, Seattle Times

    It does not take a majority to prevail ... but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.

    -Samuel Adams

    Comments are only subject to editing in case of spam or malicious, unrelated content. Dissenting opinion on this blog will never be censored

Friday, February 25, 2005

Terri Schiavo info

For those of you who didn't know, there is a case in Florida of a brain damaged woman who's husband (who now has children by another woman) is fighting to have her feeding tube removed so she can die. Terri Shiavo's parents have been fighting him for years on this because he has the legal say in the matter.

This story first hit the news a couple years ago when Mr. Schiavo won a case that let him remove the tube and remove it he did. After massive public outcry, Governor Jeb Bush pushed a bill through the State Legislature making that action illegal. After quite a few days of starvation and dehydration the tube was reinserted.

Later, a string of additional lawsuits were brought by Mr. Schiavo and a judge declared the new law unconstitutional. Lately it's been an ongoing battle of back-and-forth, as multiple temporary stays on the tube's removal are intermittently granted.

There's a lot of disgusting things about this case. The mainstream press and media have swallowed the story of a select few doctors who have supported Mr. Schiavo; therefore you often hear her described as in a "persistent vegetative state," or on "artificial" life support--such claims have been denounced by the staff in charge of her, her parents, and other doctors. What most people don't know is that the few doctors who are arguing to kill her have spent a marginal length of time examining her--a few hours at the most.

Fact: Terri she is alive, she breaths on her own, reacts to people, eats like any other disabled person and even has a small vocabulary, yet she has been denied any rehabilitation.

Check out my blog at Meneltarma for updates and info.

Other links:

Terri's Fight.org

Check this out: A columnist changes his mind
(You might need to do a free registration for this link)

Terri's church (updated)


I'm happy to report that a Vatican cardinal has made a statement about the Schiavo case. The article below was the result of my own frustration in the matter. I still believe the voice from the Vatican should be much louder.


Let us observe a brutal irony.

The last few weeks have been trying for a couple of Catholics, both of whom seem to hang in the balance. One is given every excuse possible to continue "doing his job" no matter what his health looks like; the other is denied all normal means of recuperation and instead, every excuse is given to deny her that which she still has--her life.

What unites these two Catholics? Well, besides a supposed common doctrine of life, it seems nothing unites them. One may be allowed not only life, but even his occupation in spite of his failing health while the other is denied everything.

The Vatican has taken an extremely defensive stance, "strenuously" making light of the Pope's failing condition. Read the latest on the Pope here and note the zeal of the "aids and officials" in defending their master.

Anyone else confused? Why do they seem so desperate for him to keep his job when they could be desperate for a member of their church to keep her life?

I suggest it is time for the Catholic Church to reemploy their misspent energy. I suggest they speak out for the innocent, neglected member of their body and thereby start being wholly consistent with their creed. It's no wonder the judge has ruled that her Catholicism didn't have a part in her defense; how can it if the church itself won't support it?

My church knows exactly where we stand and I am confident that in such a case, they would defend me as they would defend their own hand or foot (yes, even their head) from destruction.

I know there are many in the Catholic Church who are fighting for Terri. I respect them and thank them. But where is the church itself. Where is the Vatican? Are they too busy making excuses to keep their "holy man" from unemployment to help make the case for Terri Schiavo's life?

Crossposted at Meneltarma

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Adams on Gonzaga fraud

The great Mike Adams, professor of criminology at UNC, is at it again.

There are a good number of organizations out there doing their share to promote academic freedom on campuses across America. Adams, however, is a one-man army, bent on exposing the insidious intolerance that persists in academia.

His latest "letter" is written to Gonzaga university over their fraudulent claim to uphold the Catholic faith. The letter to an individual is one of Mr. Adams' classic writing styles:

Dear President Spitzer

Recently, I received a letter from two third-year law students at Gonzaga University (GU) School of Law. The students described your law school as one that is “secular” and which fraudulently holds itself out to be Catholic. They also stated they had experienced first-hand the school’s trampling of the rights of Christian students. Specifically, they accused GU of violating the rights of their first Christian pro-life group.
The details that follow are horrific. He notes that the university goes beyond tolerating views antithetical to Catholicism, then talks about the outright discrimination against groups that are Christian or Pro-life.

...your tolerance for those who directly oppose Catholic doctrine is not always extended to those who support it. That is odd, given that you claim to be a Catholic University.

For example, I understand that the only two Christian clubs recently formed at the law school have been refused official recognition. In addition, members of the unofficial Christian club at your “Catholic” law school have reported that promotional signs have been regularly defaced, and that members have been falsely accused of honor code violations.
This piece is worth your attention.

If you have never heard of Adams, it's time you did. He has built quite a reputation at his own school in the last few years and it has been a personal pleasure of mine to read his articles and books. Check out his website (DrAdams.org).

French cowboys vs. American cuisine

Thanks to Drudge for pointing spotting this gem from Associated Press.

Highlighted in the article is the almost absurd level of praise between two formerly bitter rivals. The kind of compliments Chirac and Bush trade remind one of complete denial.

BRUSSELS, Belgium -- Only months after he criticized countries "like France," President Bush was lavish in his praise of French President Jacques Chirac, one of the sharpest critics of the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

"I'm looking for a good cowboy," Bush said Monday when a French reporter asked him whether relations had improved to the point where the U.S. president would be inviting Chirac to the U.S. president's ranch in Texas.

Chirac had equally kind words to say about Bush, saying he and the American president "always had very warm relations."

Iraq? Merely a blip in ties between the two countries that have been "excellent for over 200 years now," Chirac said.

"Now, of course, that doesn't mean that because we share common values, we don't necessarily agree on everything all the time," Chirac added, "That doesn't necessarily mean we agree on everything at every time."
Sure...to say the least and thanks for putting it so nicely. Unfortunately, I think Mr. Chirac is entirely too optimistic about shared values. Later in the piece...
Then, when they addressed reporters, Chirac did not mention the dispute over Iraq but spoke instead of how much he had enjoyed food at the summit. "Over the last few days, this cuisine here in America was certainly on a par with French cuisine," he said.

"He particularly liked the cheeseburger he had yesterday," Bush quipped at the time.
Ok, that was a clever poke by Bush! To be honest, I am appalled that we in America could have served food to please a Frenchman!

In conclusion, "fence-mending" is all well and good. After all, it's not worth being enemies for the sake of being enemies. That said, it is of the UTMOST importance that there is no compromise on issues like treatment of rogue nations (Iran and Syria). So far I haven't seen anything to trigger red flags in this regard.

Saturday, February 19, 2005


This will hopefully be the last time I feel compelled to post about useless comments.
This website is really boring. It should be an online journal, not a blog.
This is like reading someones journal. Boring
I suppose I ought to thank this commenter (no contact info so must be the same) for being so open about his feelings toward the blog. I'm flattered that someone took the time out of a busy, busy schedule to tell me how boring...I mean bored he is. However, since he was so kind as to share this, I can't help but reciprocate and share the mutuality of his concern.

Boring or not, I'll still be here to yawn with you when you post another comment about this site being a journal.

If, on the other hand, you have something intelligent to contribute, more power to you.


AS considering consolidation

I had heard about this a few days ago, but things are starting to happen.

The AS governing body is considering combining five current information centers into one: drug, legal, sexual awareness, peace and veterans.

You know, I happen to think this is a good thing. Obviously to start with, I'm not impressed that I'm already paying for some of these things in the first place! Do you, like me, look at that list and ask yourself what a "Peace Resource Center" is? I couldn't for the life of me think of what they do, so I looked them up, as I have some of the others already:

The Peace Resource Center was established by the Associated Students in 1984 to serve the campus community by offering practical, informational resources on a wide variety of peace and justice issues. Since that time the PRC has met that need both as a unique resource center that not only has a variety of published material, but also maintains comprehensive files on many topics, and also as programming office which brings activist speakers to campus.
21 years of activist speakers and information files? Their website is a whole lot of nothing...oh except for the links page (i.e. the Michael Moore dot org-and-every-other-leftist-front-group-on-the-planet page)

The Western Front did a piece on it as was to be expected. I think the reporter did a good job and I was thrilled that one of the sources in the story was so honest as to say that she was worried about losing her job...after all, her job status has priority over the taxpayers who subsidize it!

Give it a read. I was struck by the plethora of lame excuses for keeping these "resource centers" as they are.

On a final note, I think you would find out fast which ones are the most important roles if they were combined into one center. One set of staff to compare the real-life benefits of each of them side by side may have some revealing spin-offs!

Friday, February 18, 2005

'a solution in search of a problem'

The Tacoma News Tribune published their opinion against amending I-200, the voter approved initiative which bars public race preferences in hiring and student enrollment consideration. I like what they have to say! Thanks to Matt Rosenberg for pointing it out on Sound Politics.

...right now it looks like a solution in search of a problem. Washington’s public universities have responded impressively to I-200 by expanding their minority outreach efforts, which the initiative does not forbid.

Minority enrollments fell after the initiative passed, but they have rebounded. The University of Washington’s 2004 freshman class, for example, included more African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos and Asian Americans than the 1998 class, the last batch of freshmen admitted before I-200 took effect. Except for Latinos, each of those groups also accounted for a larger share of the UW’s freshman class.

The numbers suggest that I-200 has not prevented Washington’s public universities from welcoming disadvantaged minorities. Legislators should be wary of tampering with a popular initiative – and inviting a public backlash – without better cause.
Here here.

While I don't consider him the premier icon of credible conservatism, I can't help but wonder if Rush Limbaugh is right. The Democrats efforts to "fix what isn't broken" makes me take Rush all the more seriously when he says the Democrats will do all they can to make minorities dependant on government; that, of course, so they can offer handout programs to garner minority votes...something they have been getting less of lately.

What other reason can they have if all the evidence says we DON'T NEED race based profiling to have a minority collegiate population?

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Le Moyne College dismisses student over A- paper

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), just released some interesting info on one of their latest cases. It concerns Scott McConnell, a graduate student at Le Moyne College in New York, who was dismissed from the graduate education program because of, as the college put it, a "mismatch" between his beliefs and the goals of the college’s graduate education program.

See the full story at FIRE.org...

In November 2004, McConnell submitted as part of an assignment a paper expressing his personal views on classroom management, including various ideas for attaining a classroom environment that is “based upon strong discipline and hard work” and that allows “corporal punishment.” The paper received an “A-,” with his professor noting that his ideas were “interesting” and that she had shared the paper with the department chair, Cathy Leogrande. McConnell ultimately received an “A” as his final grade in the course.
Then the bombshell:

Yet in January 2005, with no prior warning, Leogrande dismissed McConnell from Le Moyne. In the dismissal letter, Leogrande stated that she had reviewed McConnell’s grades for courses he took during the summer and fall semesters and had “discussed” his work with his professors. Leogrande wrote, “I have grave concerns regarding the mismatch between your personal beliefs regarding teaching and learning and the Le Moyne College program goals. Based on this data, I do not believe that you should continue in the Le Moyne [Master of Science for Teachers] Program.” At the time he was dismissed, McConnell had achieved a grade-point average of 3.78 for the fall semester and had received an “excellent” evaluation for his work in an actual classroom.
I'm trying to imagine the shock a letter like that would give me! I have this image of someone opening the letter, thinking it was congratulations for being on the Deans List or something--and then cold sweat...then the anger. Yeah, I can imagine.

Best wishes to McConnell and I hope he comes out on top.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Revote commentary in The Western Front

My apologies for letting posting get stagnant. I try to have time at least every other day to get some posting in. That hasn't been happening because my mind (among other things) has been abnormally pre-occupied lately.

On to the update...

Being a staff writer on The Western Front means being unbiased--except when I volunteer to write an opinion. This I did and I was pretty happy with the outcome...well, the original outcome that is... So far, the only thing that has been printed is a chopped version (because of space restrictions) and nothing has shown up online--this is odd because my rival counterpart has her piece up... Someone is going to hear about this soon, if not tonight.

Anyway, just for the record, I want to present you with the full piece, before space restrictions took their toll.

Citizens of this state are under the specter of a tarnished gubernatorial election. A revote is the only way to undo the damage inflicted on the election process’s credibility.

Throughout the mayhem, Washingtonians had their intelligence insulted as King County officials made a mess of the election process. The Democrats have followed this up by making contradictory arguments in their attempts to stop a revote.

For example, last month, Democratic attorneys requested the Chelan County Superior Court dismiss the Republican suit to have the election debacle nullified. Democratic attorney Jenny Durkan argued that courts have no jurisdiction to hear a gubernatorial election contest, according to a Jan. 24 Seattle Times article.

While Judge John Bridges rejected her argument, the real irony in her attempt is that it puts the Democrats in an inconsistent position. According to the same article, when Republican legislators tried to delay the inauguration, Democratic legislators said the state legislature was not the proper venue but instead the courts were.

Rep. Kelli Linville, D-western Whatcom County, echoed that view in a Jan. 13 e-mail, in which she said the courts must determine whether a new election is required.

Sensible people, meanwhile, may feel like their heads will twist off while trying to follow these circular arguments.

The problems with the election are far too numerous to tally exhaustively in this little column, so a few examples will have to suffice.

Washington will remember the drama of the recounts for a long time to come. It seemed every day new reports of inexplicable mystery ballots appeared. The predictability of each “discovery” grew to be surreal in the extreme.

The Seattle Times reflected this in a Dec. 17 article describing King County election workers opening a locked cage in a warehouse and pulling out a cart containing trays of rejected absentee ballots in full view of observers and a mass of television cameras. They found 150 mystery ballots in sealed envelopes in a tray with other rejected ballots.

Republican concerns about the security of those “locked cages” are now being brought to bear in the Chelan County case through the signed affidavit of King County election observer Timothy Borders.

Borders expressed concern to King County Elections Superintendent Bill Huennekens during the election process that the cages were too easy to break into, according to a Feb. 4 Seattle Times article.

In response, Huennekens casually said, “If it happens, we’ll know it was you.”

After pseudo-Governor Gregoire claimed victory, Seattle resident and computer software consultant Stefan Sharkansky blew the whistle on the King County’s huge discrepancy between the ballots counted and the voters who voted. The county never did offer an explanation, and instead tried to say the discrepancy is normal. Unfortunately, as Sharkansky pointed out on his Weblog, Sound Politics, the numbers did not match previous discrepancies recorded from past elections.

As the evidence continues to pile up, Washingtonians can only wonder why Christine Gregoire called this election system a model to the rest of the nation and to the world at large, in a Dec. 25 Seattle Post-Intelligencer article.

Many people have argued that Washington couldn’t patiently stand another election. But in reality, nothing could be farther from the truth.

In fact Democratic leaders in Washington have reason to be uneasy despite this state’s blue leanings. According to an independent Jan. 26 survey by Strategic Vision, a nationwide public relations firm, 53 percent of Washingtonians support a revote between Ms. Gregoire and Mr. Rossi.

It’s time to start over. A new election will give Washingtonians a chance to speak in language they can understand. More than that, someone needs to make sure ballots aren’t treated like playing cards to be shuffled and bottom dealt until the hand unfairly suits any candidate.

Be sure to read my opponent's piece. She did a pretty good job but I'll think she could have gotten some of her facts straight--after all, Rossi is not digging "bitterly through garbage cans to find votes that may not have been counted." That was the Dem’s method of winning. Instead, team Rossi would rather prove team Gregoire dug through "garbage cans" to get the votes they got. I fail to see how Ms. Harshman could think Rossi is looking for new "uncounted ballots."

I know, it's not my place to understand such thinking.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

A lot about livin' and a little 'bout libel

I was accused of libel for the first time today.

It came so unexpectedly that I was at first (and rightly) incredulous. The article was pretty well complete and I didn't expect any serious problems when it was vetted for errors. Then out of the blue I was cited on two counts of libel!

Here's a little background with certain details left to the imagination.

It was a commentary I was working on. It was the first one I had written for the Western Front and it was likewise the first conservative opinion to be voice on the editorial pages of the the Front this quarter. I will post a notice when the piece is in print and also online.

When I discussed the issue with one of (those people) who cited me for it, I found myself vacillating between two impulses. The first was to take the charge at face-value, suck it up and fix it; the second was induced partly by the realization that if I just took it for what it was worth, I would probably get seriously marked down, if not flunked, by (those people) who cited it, plus, even though the piece would run, it would be all the more stilted and stuffy for lack of one of the terms they wanted cut out.

What did I have to lose? My goal wasn't to get (this person) mad at me when (this person) was just trying to do (this person's) job. And yet, I was stung. I didn't like the idea that something like this was going to cost me points when I wasn't convinced I had done something wrong.

So I told (this person) I wasn't convinced it was libelous.

(This person) said we should take the matter to (higher person). To cut through the fat, (higher person) said it was ok and I didn't get my points cut. A happy ending and life goes on.

My conclusion:

Since the article was the first of its kind (conservative), it probably pushed (those people) out of their comfort zones and they just reacted. It was nothing personal. (This person) accepted the assessment of (higher person) very graciously. Although, graciousness or not, there's still no getting around the fact that my hackles still rise when I think back on it.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Affirmative action: the specter of artificial diversity

Democrats are getting ready to make changes to what is allowed in school admission policies so that schools can have their race-based criteria back again--after voters rejected it via Initiative 200. I don't think they are going to benefit by it, though. From the Seattle Times:

Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D-Seattle, who introduced the Senate bill, said it would put Washington state in compliance with a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, which in 2003 said the University of Michigan law school could consider race in admissions as long as it served "a compelling state interest in student-body diversity."

When does it ever not serve a compelling interest in student-body diversity. It always will by most university standards.

If it does pass and we are again racially profiled on campus, I think some active protesting would be in order. I really don't understand the need for it when the good people of Washington already rejected it. I've had people try just about everything they can to convince me that affirmative action is needed. I'm still not convinced.

As for this compliance with rulings bit, if they thought the high court would want us to be doing something, why don't they file a lawsuit instead?

There's no justification for giving someone preference based on their racial background--you'd think that was abundantly clear to the Democrats since they try to pretend they are champions of civil rights.

There's more than consistency at stake, though. It is a serious issue to say, as many do in academia, that the diverse atmosphere on campus is just as important as the academic quality of the student body. I don't think I've ever been excluded based on my non-minority status...it doesn't matter though because I'm supposed to thank the school administrators for providing me with all this diversity! It's such a good experience you know. I won't deny that exposure to diverse types and characters during my education could have some small positive effects on me (let me think about that one for a bit), but if the next Einstein is going to be discriminated against before he can get into higher ed, then I'd have to say no, the price is too high to create an artificial diversity which isn't even representative of the real world.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Expressing my opinion?

I suppose I should not have started this post when I did. I'm in the middle of a class. My inducement to do something like this is just as insidious, though.

I just had to sit through ten minutes of political discussion. Mind you, it all started in a very applicable manner. This being a journalism class, the discussion was concerning a new survey of highschools over first amendment freedom.

From USA Today:

One in three U.S. high school students say the press ought to be more restricted, and even more say the government should approve newspaper stories before readers see them, according to a survey being released today.

The survey of 112,003 students finds that 36% believe newspapers should get “government approval” of stories before publishing; 51% say they should be able to publish freely; 13% have no opinion.

Asked whether the press enjoys “too much freedom,” not enough or about the right amount, 32% say “too much,” and 37% say it has the right amount. Ten percent say it has too little.

The survey of First Amendment rights was commissioned by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and conducted last spring by the University of Connecticut. It also questioned 327 principals and 7,889 teachers.

It set off a lot of needless speculation about what we are becoming as a society. I didn't have anything constructive to add to such a devolved and unconstructive discussion, so I decided to go here instead...

After class addition

I can't say I was really surprised but was quite annoyed about the whole discussion because some in the room ended up talking about where we are--about the 80s being a rerun of the 50s and so on. Other's suggested we are in a new Nixon (and Vietnam) era--so I stopped listening expecially since this was about the third time I had run into this survey in a class.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


A good friend of mine posted a rather insightful anecdote regarding the political ignorance of some students. She describes a conversation about the revote effort she overheard while on the bus.

The climax is a stunner:

And then came the grand finale. “Yeah, I really only voted for Gregoire because my mom doesn’t like her and that’s enough for me.”

Is there intelligent life on earth still? Or are we all mindlessly choosing to vote for whomever our enemies are voting against? It’s easy to claim superiority. It’s a lot more difficult to prove it.
Here, here!

On the other hand, I have often heard other students from the College Republicans express that their parents vote Democrat...but they usually care enough to explain to their parents their reasons for defecting to conservatism. A shift from left to right is usually a thoughtful shift, unlike the above example illustrates of a mindless shift from right to left.