June 30, 2008
— Dave in Texas Me and the Man of Substance been watching this one. I sure didn't think it would fall this way.
To recap: Joe Horn, a resident of Pasadena Texas observed two men (illegal aliens as it happens), burglarizing a neighbor's home, and he called 911.
He spent some time on the phone with the 911 dispatcher, waiting for law enforcement to arrive.
They didn't, and he grabbed a shotgun and went out to confront them.
According to the transcript, the 911 operator repeatedly urged Joe to stay inside and wait for law enforcement. Joe waited a while, then said 'he did not believe it would be right to let the burglars get away'.
"Well, here it goes, buddy," Horn can be heard telling the operator. "You hear the shotgun clicking and I'm going."
He went out, told em to stop. They didn't. And he shot both of them, in the back.
I pause to mention that I have taken the training required for a Texas CHL. This was stressed as a huge no-no, although I did take the class before the "Castle Doctrine" law passed. Allah calls this a huge migraine. Can't argue, but I got some Excedrine.
The lawyer for Joe did his lawyerly duty, talked about how Joe wishes he had stayed inside, it's "affected him", and the other bullshit you offer up in defense of your client (gotta be PR, you go before the grand jury in Texas by yourself, if I recall correctly it's been a few years, ahem).
Now, the interesting part to me, and something we won't get out of secret grand jury testimony (I have that correct, don't I? I'm not a lawyer, but I think the proceedings are not public, so put me some knowledge. Are there records I need to fret over?), is that a plainclothes detective watched the whole thing go down.
I have to think he mighta testified.
This is the statement that persuaded me the most:
"The detective confirmed that this suspect was actually closer to Horn after he initiated his run than at the time when first confronted," said Corbett. "Horn said he felt in jeopardy."
If he felt threatened.
It sounds like that's where the grand jury came down on this.
UPDATED: Commenter jmarsh added this: "I think the grand jury effort, if there's the same forcible felony "out", was actually more of an effort to indemnify Joe Horn."
Yup. The Castle Doctrine law in Texas provides for something called Affirmative Defense, protection from civil litigation if the shooter's actions were justifiable under the law. jmarsh might be right.
— Ace Seems a tad optimistic to me -- and what then do we make of John "Secure the Border First" McCain's promise to seek amnesty on day one of his administration?
Even Chertoff, offering a rosy prediction, says it will take three years.
Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff said tightened security on the U.S.-Mexico border has sparked increased violence there and that the border probably will not be fully secure until 2011, three years after the Bush administration leaves office.
"(Increased violence) is what typically happens when you start to enforce and make it harder to fight over the shrinking pie, so to speak, and who gets the best opportunity to exploit the additional space that's left," Chertoff said at a news conference at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection headquarters in Washington, D.C. on Monday.
"That's a good sign," he said. "The bad news is, it's created a lot of violence and created a lot of havoc, particularly in Mexico."
"We have to recognize that both countries (U.S. and Mexico) have a common interest in securing the border," Chertoff said.
"I think we will have made a dramatic amount of progress," he said. "I think if we continue on the course we've set now we can get the border secure ... sometime in 2011."
— Ace Sector outlook: "Grim."
Instapundit says he doesn't have much "glee" about this. I have a lot more. It's true that news is important.
On the other hand, those who have been delivering the news to us have been doing a rotten -- and deliberately so -- job. People don't trust them; they recognize they are by and large an owned-and-operated subsidiary of the DNC's communications department.
It's a good thing when bad businesses die. It clears the way for good businesses to enter the field.
— Ace Caught by Commentary:
In February, 2007, when Barack Obama declared that he was running for President, violence in Iraq had reached apocalyptic levels, and he based his candidacy, in part, on a bold promise to begin a rapid withdrawal of American forces upon taking office. At the time, this pledge represented conventional thinking among Democrats and was guaranteed to play well with primary voters. But in the year and a half since then two improbable, though not unforeseeable, events have occurred: Obama has won the Democratic nomination, and Iraq, despite myriad crises, has begun to stabilize. With the general election four months away, Obamas rhetoric on the topic now seems outdated and out of touch, and the nominee-apparent may have a political problem concerning the very issue that did so much to bring him this far. . . He doubtless realizes that his original plan, if implemented now, could revive the badly wounded Al Qaeda in Iraq, reënergize the Sunni insurgency, embolden Moqtada al-Sadr to recoup his militias recent losses to the Iraqi Army, and return the central government to a state of collapse. The question is whether Obama will publicly change course before November. So far, he has offered nothing more concrete than this: We must be as careful getting out of Iraq as we were careless getting in. . . . Yet, as exhausted as the public is with the war, a candidate who seems heedless of progress in Iraq will be vulnerable to the charge of defeatism, which John McCains campaign will connect to its broader theme of Obamas inexperience in and weakness on national security.
Jennifer Rubin points out:
So now other MSM outlets can get into the act. MSNBC tips its hand by saying, This isnt the Weekly Standard writing about this. And other mainstream media sources likewise rush to confirm that, my gosh, Obama has a problem.
Perhaps if mainstream media reporters and pundits actually read something other than each others publications they might learn something new. Seriously, they tell us that the same facts reported months ago by Weekly Standard wasnt worth a mention but a belated account from the New Yorker is? There could be no better proof that the worst victim of the media cocoon is the mainstream media itself.
That is interesting -- apparently MSNBC holds it against the Weekly Standard that it's gotten this right long before the liberal media would even acknowledge something as awful as the possibility of an American military victory.
— Ace The test had two twists: the interceptor was launched from an airplane, and the target was a two-stage missile whose warhead separated from the main missile.
So, this was new, and it was news.
The networks didn't cover it and neither, it seems, did most print outlets.
Dave in Texas did over the weekend. I guess he just doesn't understand the importance of The Narrative (TM).
Update: Newsbusters did find one network reference to the test since they first published the post. The "Today" show mentioned the test once in a 9 AM news summary.
— Ace The blogospheric anthropomorphization of John Bolton's Mustache may (but probably won't) result in a TV series.
"In a cartoon setting, the mustache has its own personality," Oates says from Aspen, Colo., where he's finishing his latest solo album....
The pilot, which Primary Wave estimates will be between six and 10 minutes long, is being storyboarded, and the aim is to have it completed in the next two months. It will portray Oates opening a new wing of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame that focuses on mustachioed musicians.
Suddenly, a dying David Crosby appears and with his last breath warns Oates of a mysterious secret group of mustache wearers bent on killing other mustache wearers. As actor Tom Selleck attempts to escape from the latest murder scene, Oates summons his own mustache with a fist pump that simultaneously changes his clothes from conservative attire to pink pants and white boots.
Thanks to MattM.
— Ace The Chosen One really can unite us all! Even Satan's got Obamania!
— Ace The Chosen One's taken a stand:
At an event [last] week in New Mexico, Obama repeated the misleading claim that "women still earn only 77 cents for every dollar earned by men," and dismissed the notion that factors other than discrimination explain the wage gap as "just totally wrong.
Democrat Barack Obama, determined to win over female voters, talked Monday about the women who helped shape his life in arguing that he would be a better proponent of equal pay than Republican John McCain.
The presumed Democratic nominee toured a baking facility and chatted with female workers about their economic challenges.
Sen. Obama told how he was raised by a single mother and his grandmother, who made sacrifices to support their family. He told them that Sen. McCain opposed legislation earlier this year that would have made it easier for women to sue their employers for pay discrimination. Obama supported the bill.
"I'll continue to stand up for equal pay as president Senator McCain won't, and that's a real difference in this election," Obama said.
Uh huh. Three guesses as to which campaign pays women more than men on average, and which campaign pays them $6,000 less on average.
Does Obama support his female employees' right to sue him? If not, why not? And why do they have to sue for equal pay in the first place, since he's such a bear on the subject?
Is he waiting for a vote in Congress? (A vote he's sure to vote "present" on or simply skip, as is his practice as regards controversial bills.)
— Ace From an Instapundit reader, reacting to Wes "Timeranger" Clark's claim that McCain's only military experience is getting shot down:
The Saddest Thing About Barack Obama's Available Military Expertise...
...is that though he has Wes Clark in his corner, the only person he knows with the experience of getting a bomb on target is Bill Ayers.
McCain, meanwhile, wonders how Clark's distractions about McCain's military experience helps Michelle Obama's kids.
— DrewM The new Quantum Of Solace trailer is up. Conservative film blogger Dirty Harry has the link and is impressed.
I was never a huge Bond fan but the most recent one and this trailer are changing my mind. It looks like all the worrying about rebooting the franchise was for nothing.
Now if they can only finish the movie without anyone else getting hurt or killed.
Here's the most important part of any Bond film...the Bond Girl. Meet Olga Kurylenko
Update: I embedded the clip below (ace). more...
— Ace A point that's so obvious that the MSM can't seem to comprehend it:
As dumb as this claim is, and it is stupid on it's face, the one that continues to bug the shit out of me is when the Dems keep whinning that any additional drilling offshore or in ANWR wouldn't yield any oil for a number of years. Instead, they want to invest in unproven technologies such as electric cars and solar and wind which will cost significantly more, require a massive overhaul of supporting infrastructure and...wait for it...won't yield any results for even more years if ever. Yet, nobody points out this obvious yet inconvenient truth.
This whole thing is a blatant excuse to rework our economy to favor more enlightened and ecology happy energy sources to support the myth of man made global warm..er climate change.
That's from Jack Straw.
I personally have trouble making that point because it's so goddamned obvious I feel like I'm condescending even to mention it.
However, the MSM has no such excuse -- they conduct interviews with these people day-in, day-out, and certainly it would be newsworthy to have a Democrat explain why we shouldn't explore for oil, which might take five years to show any benefit, but we should put al our eggs in the "new technology" basket, which will take ten years to show any benefit. If ever.
— Ace In case you hadn't heard, Gleen is taking Keith to task for his remarkable flip-flop on FISA/telecom immunity.
Both were wrong on this issue initially. Gleen, however, is at least consistently wrong, and does not flip-flop in order to keep up with Obama's flip-flops.
Keith Olbermann called Bush a traitor, fascist, and ally of terrorists for demanding immunity for telecoms. Now when Obambi supports the same measure, he's called... "strong." Strong to not allow himself to be rolled by the Republicans on the issue. Strong to stand up to the "far left" on the issue.
Uhh... why wasn't Bush similarly "strong" for advocating immunity? Why wasn't he "strong" for standing up to the "far left"?
(It's also interesting that Keith Olbermann's mind can only discuss the subject in terms of political advantage. You would think that maybe he could address the issue in national security terms, but, alas, no. Not anymore. Oh he was able to discuss what he would call "national security" implications when he was bashing Bush -- "siding with terrorists!" -- but now that Obama has joined Bush, such considerations are no longer considered, and the question simply becomes another horserace/political positioning one.)
Keith Olbermann has gotten around to defending his own amazing flip-flop -- on the Daily Kos, of course. He claims Obama's position is different than Bush's, and hence supportable, because while the measure provides civil litigation immunity for the telecoms, it does not foreclose the possibility of future criminal prosecution by the state, and that makes all the difference.
Of course Olbermann did not make any reference to this being a key consideration in his previous rants, nor did he mention it in calling Obama "strong." Obama himself doesn't cite that this as reason for his flip-flop, either, to Keith Olbermann's chagrin.
It's also simply stupid. There's a doctrine forbidding this -- entrapment. Entrapment is defined legally as the undertaking of a criminal act, but only due to the urging of an agent of the state; without that urging, the crime would not have been committed in the first place. Obviously entrapment applies here; the telecoms didn't offer up their records to the Bush Administration like a dealer hawking crack in the street; the Bush Administration came to them, urged/demanded they assist in the War on Terror, and provided legal opinions that this was lawful and proper.
Obama can't prosecute them for an alleged "crime" that occurred only due to the state's urging and with the state's reassurance that it was in fact not a crime at all.
So Olbermann can continue to spin, but the fact is, when Bush does it, it's fascist, treasonous, and "siding with terrorists." When The Chosen One does it, it's "strong." And understandable. And even... praiseworthy.
He's always been a joke, a carnival barker hawking political pornography. But some on the "far left" (also known as "his audience") finally seem to be noticing.
Maybe the "far left" will demonstrate "strength" similar to Obama's by tuning him out.
— Ace Caught between public anger over $4.00+ per gallon gas and their anti-oil base which cannot countenance additional drilling of any kind, Democrats have trotted out an extremely stupid talking point -- make oil companies drill where they currently hold leases before allowing any additional exploration. If they can sell this stupidity, they can claim they are in fact for additional oil production -- they're the ones trying to pressure the oil companies to stop "stockpiling" oil-rich lands -- while holding the line on additional wells, thus appeasing their base.
No Republican would be permitted such a convenient absurdity; the MSM would demolish it. But the rules are always different for Democrats, and the media is determined to help sell this lie.
Except for a few conservative-titling outfits, such as the WSJ.
Oil companies take leases not because they know there's oil on the land (or under the sea), but because they think there might be oil and need the lease in order to explore that possibility and to secure the legal right to pump it if they do find it. It's simply ridiculous to assume, as the Democrats' talking points do, that each and every lease actually contains a huge amount of recoverable oil, and the oil companies are simply refusing to drill there. Instead, the claim goes, the oil companies are clamoring for the right to grab up additional leases... which then, of course, they will also leave untouched.
Why are oil companies securing leases for oil they know is there but have no intention of drilling? If their goal is to not drill, why bother with the expense of a lease at all? They're all in on it together, in this conspiracy theory, so they can all just agree to not drill at all. They hardly need to pay the government money for the right not to drill.
This is all so ridiculous that the entirety of the MSM should have called this dishonest spin for what it is. But they didn't, of course, and so the WSJ is left to explain the obvious:
To deflect the GOP effort to relax the offshore-drilling ban and thus boost supply while demand will remain strong Democrats also say that most of the current leases are "nonproducing." The idea comes from a "special report" prepared by the Democratic staff of the House Resources Committee, chaired by Mr. Rahall. "If we extrapolate from today's production rates on federal lands and waters," the authors write, the oil companies could "nearly double total U.S. oil production" (their emphasis).
In other words, these whiz kids assume that every acre of every lease holds the same amount of oil and gas.
In other words, they're assuming that that the currently-nonproducing leases can produce the same amount of oil as the producing ones. And yet the productive wells were not chosen at random, were they? They were explored because they were the most likely to have oil, and then they were drilled because the exploration proved they had oil.
This is like assuming that because your wife agreed to marry you when you asked her to, you can randomly walk down the street proposing to strangers and enjoy the same 100% success rate.
Yet the existence of a lease does not guarantee that the geology holds recoverable resources. Brian Kennedy of the Institute for Energy Research quips that, using the same extrapolation, the 9.4 billion acres of the currently nonproducing moon should yield 654 million barrels of oil per day.
Nonetheless, the House still went through with a gesture called the "use it or lose it" bill, which passed on Thursday 223-195. It would be pointless even if it had a chance of becoming law. Oil companies acquire leases in the expectation that some of them contain sufficient oil and gas to cover the total costs. Yet it takes years to move through federal permitting, exploration and development. The U.S. Minerals Management Service notes that only one of three wells results in a discovery of oil that can be recovered economically. In deeper water, it's one of five. All this involves huge risks, capital investment and time.
It also involves guessing at where one's resources are best used. If ExxonMobile has, say, thirty leases, and the money and equipment and manpower to only explore on, say, five areas at a time, they're obviously going to go after the most likely sites first, and the least likely areas will remain "nonproducing" in the interim.
But even the most likely sites are in fact highly unlikely to produce recoverable oil. It's a numbers game. Oil can be found -- but they need to be able to look in a lot of places.
Yet companies are not allowed to explore where the biggest prospects for oil and gas may exist especially on the Outer Continental Shelf. Seven of the top 20 U.S. oil fields are now located in analogous deepwater areas (greater than 1,000 feet) in the Gulf of Mexico. In 2006, Chevron discovered what is likely to be the largest American oil find since Prudhoe, drilled in 7,000 feet of water and more than 20,000 feet under the sea floor. The Wilcox formation may have an upper end of 15 billion barrels of recoverable oil and should begin producing by 2014 perhaps ushering in a new ultradeepwater frontier.
But by all means let's try to force companies to drill where they have little hope of finding oil.
Demanding drilling first on all extant leases is an absurd position to take when they dont have any indication of accessible oil from the preliminary studies. It amounts to drilling dry holes at a cost of tens of millions of dollars each just to demonstrate the futility. Who do you think will pay that cost? Hint: it wont be Barack Obama or Congress, but the people who drive up to the pumps every day.
— Ace Seems like a high body count for an accident.
A military shooting demonstration in southeast France on Sunday left 16 people wounded, including children, when real bullets were used instead of blank ones, officials said.
Four of the wounded were in serious condition, including a 3-year-old child, Bernard Lemaire, chief of the regional administration in Aude, said on France-3 television. Fifteen of the injured were civilians.
A Defense Ministry official said the incident occurred during a demonstration of hostage-freeing techniques at the Laperrine military barracks. The official said investigators will look into why real bullets were used.
No information was immediately available about what kind of weapon was used.
The soldier who fired the shots has been detained, Lemaire said. He said the injuries were likely an accident but that it could have been a "criminal act."
Thanks to chickpea.
— DrewM It's being billed as a major speech but listening to it now, it's pretty much about Obama and how "I will never question the patriotism of others in this campaign. And I will not stand idly by when people question mine.
Now he's into the 'American can be made better' is really patriotism stuff.
Fearless prediction...Andrew Sullivan will LOVE this speech.
He does have a lapel pin on. I can't tell if it's one of those false patriotism flag pins or not.
He's broken it down to 3 elements...a 'gut love of country', a willingness to speak up when the government is wrong and sacrifice/service.
There's absolutely nothing new or interesting about this speech but it will be hailed as some sort of revelation about what it means to be patriotic.
In the sacrifice section he takes a swipe at Wesley Clark, without naming him, for his remarks on McCain.
You can read the speech here.
One favorite quote:
And it is up to us to teach our children a lesson that those of us in politics too often forget: that patriotism involves not only defending this country against external threat, but also working constantly to make America a better place for future generations.
When we pile up mountains of debt for the next generation to absorb, or put off changes to our energy policies, knowing full well the potential consequences of inaction, we are placing our short-term interests ahead of the nations long-term well-being. When we fail to educate effectively millions of our children so that they might compete in a global economy, or we fail to invest in the basic scientific research that has driven innovation in this country, we risk leaving behind an America that has fallen in the ranks of the world. Just as patriotism involves each of us making a commitment to this nation that extends beyond our own immediate self-interest, so must that commitment extends beyond our own time here on earth.
Enacting a Democratic domestic agenda is the highest form of patriotism! more...
— Gabriel Malor Michael Totten describes part of his journey in Eastern Europe:
My name is Michael, I said to a young boy. What's yours?
Mario, he said.
Mister, where are you from? said a little girl.
America, I said.
Yay! The kids cheered.
Albania is fanatically pro-American, which is perhaps a bit counterintuitive to many Americans since it is at least nominally a Muslim-majority country. The conventional assumption that Muslims hate Americans everywhere isn't true.
Click over to read the whole thing, with pictures! I especially like his improvised sign-language for "danger." I would have freaked out too.
— Purple Avenger Apparently hope and change doesn't include pesky things like free speech or dissent.
...It isn't just conservative sites that Google's Blogger platform is eliminating. For instance, www.comealongway.blogspot.com has been frozen and this one is a Hillary supporting site...Hitler had Brownshirts and Stormtroopers, Stalin had Yezhov/Beria, Algore has Hansen, and now Obama has Google to do the nasty wet work silencing the opposition.
June 29, 2008
— DrewM It's almost laughable that someone who is supporting Barack Obama would have the chutzpah to go after John McCain on experience and qualifications to be President but behold the modern day Democratic Party.
Clark said that McCain lacked the executive experience necessary to be president, calling him untested and untried on CBS Face the Nation. And in saying so, he took a few swipes at McCains military service.
...He has been a voice on the Senate Armed Services Committee. And he has traveled all over the world. But he hasn't held executive responsibility. That large squadron in the Navy that he commanded that wasn't a wartime squadron, Clark said.
I dont think getting in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to become president.
As Lex points out, that's not exactly the sum total of McCain's experience.
Also, "Spook86" at In From the Cold compares McCain's hostile attitude toward his captors to Clark's rather chummy behavior with Balkan murderers and concludes...
Say what you will about his "executive experience." At least John McCain knows how to handle himself in the presence of the enemy.
As the saying goes, read the whole thing.
Wasn't it just 4 years ago that Democrats were telling America only a military veteran like John Kerry (who served in Vietnam, in case you hadn't heard) was fit to serve as POTUS? Funny how one short election later that's been modified to 'serving' as a 'community organizer and 2/3 of a term in the Senate'.
Hope. Change. Stupidity.
— DrewM Remember when mentioning Barack Obamas middle name was something you had to apologize for? Thats only for Republicans silly. Now using the H word is a sign of your devotion to Him.
Emily Nordling has never met a Muslim, at least not to her knowledge. But this spring, Ms. Nordling, a 19-year-old student from Fort Thomas, Ky., gave herself a new middle name on Facebook.com, mimicking her boyfriend and shocking her father.
Emily Hussein Nordling, her entry now reads.
With her decision, she joined a growing band of supporters of Senator Barack Obama, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, who are expressing solidarity with him by informally adopting his middle name.
Jeff Strabone of Brooklyn now signs credit card receipts with his newly assumed middle name, while Dan OMaley of Washington, D.C., jiggered his e-mail account so his name would appear as D. Hussein OMaley. Alex Enderle made the switch online along with several other Obama volunteers from Columbus, Ohio, and now friends greet him that way in person, too.
Me? No, Im not Drew Hussein M. I am Spartacus.
— LauraW There Were Some Bruised Feelings
It's hard to believe, after some of the flamewars we've had over the years, that our virtual selves aren't outfitted with alligator hide.
But we aren't. Last night, Stinky Esposito literally insulted everybody on the blog with one comment.** Because of a nifty little script on the new site that reads your cookie and inserts your blog-name there. So when the comment appears, everyone will see their own name in the sentence.
Goes like this: [ you ]
But with no spaces.
If you delete all your cookies and then view the page again, instead of your name, you will see simply the word 'you' in all the areas your name had been inserted.
As soon as you post another comment, whatever name you put in the name field will again be inserted.
I felt hurt and sad when Stinky said those terrible things to me last night.
Then I noticed everybody else was acting just as horrified, and wondering what they did to get singled out, and giving him shit.
So it became kind of funny.
You may consider this thread a place to play with the feature, tell stories about each other, and flame all your fellow morons by name in one fell swoop. Kind of a twist on the ol' flame war concept.
I'm going to see if it works in a main page post. If it does, you should see your handle here: [you]
**only shows up and only works on the new site.
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