12/31/09

New birds gallery

We just posted another birds gallery:

Birds of Northern Otero County

“… simply another sycophant …

… in the noisily agreeable chorus of yes-men.”

That’s from our latest He Said/She Said, and it derives from a quote that Leece uses in her email sig block. It has to do with the press not doing what its supposed to do:

“Journalists belong in the gutter because that is where the ruling classes throw their guilty secrets.”

- Gerald Priestland

One of the reasons we have such an empty suit for a president is the lack of real reporting by the mainstream media. They are in such a love-fest with Obama they can’t see that the emperor has no clothes. Want some examples? Here ya go:

Nine stories the mainstream media missed

Note that these stories weren’t deeply buried. Bloggers had them for days before the MSM ever covered them, if it ever covered them. It’s a head-in-the-sand, butt-smooching mindset at work.

12/30/09

"Heck of a job, Barry!"

Like, wowsers! That’s almost like Rich Galen’s “Nappy, you’re doing a heck of a job!”, isn’t it?

But it isn’t from a right wing extremist like Beck or O’Reilly or Cheney or even Sara Palin.

It’s from the New York Times! Yes … it’s from one of Obama’s primary PR firms, the New York Times!

And even further off the probability scale, it’s written by … Maureen Dowd! Yep. That Maureen Dowd.

Here’s the article:

Heck of a job, Barry

in which she gives her take on The Crotch Bomber, and the pathetic response by Obama, Napolitano, and TSA.

Taking on Cheney

The White House “replied forcefully” to former Veep Dick Cheney’s rather scathing comments about the Obamanian response to The Crotch Bomber.

“It is telling that Vice President Cheney and others seem to be more focused on criticizing the Administration than condemning the attackers,” White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer wrote on the White House’s official blog. “Unfortunately too many are engaged in the typical Washington game of pointing fingers and making political hay, instead of working together to find solutions to make our country safer.”

It’s really telling that the White House is replying more forcefully to Cheney than it is to The Crotch Bomber. Certainly, Pfeiffer’s language was more ‘forceful’ than Obama’s, which was laced with ‘alleged’ and other niceties designed to protect a case against a criminal defendant. Obama and his henchmen are still dealing with these guys as though they are criminals.

They are not.

They are … terrorists. They are non-uniformed combatants waging war against the United States.

Meanwhile, TSA seems to be expending more effort at harassing bloggers than in deterring terrorists:

TSA going after bloggers who wrote about security directive

It seems that the ridiculous response of Janet Napolitano’s minions in TSA ended up in some blogger inboxes. TSA wants to know who leaked the documents. But … the docs are not classified. Which means they are in the public domain anyway. TSA claims the docs are ’sensitive’. But … the procedures described within the docs would have been obvious, indeed, are obvious, to passengers. If you weren’t following the latest bureaucratic mangling of security measures, take a read of Judith Miller’s Are Latest TSA Regulations “Too Stupid for America”?

But we can sleep tight, friends and neighbors … TSA agents are tracking down the leakers as we speak, and Granny Goodcookie is getting her torso patted down as she returns from Christmas with the grandkids.

Galen on Janet

Rich Galen has a good commentary about The Crotch Bomber, aka The BVD Bomber, aka The Whitey-Tighty Bomber, and Janet Napolitano’s typically foolish comments about all that.

Janet, as we all know, is secretary of Homeland Security, the one who refuses to call a ‘terrorist’ a ‘terrorist’, accepting the Obmanian ‘extremist’ or ‘man-caused disaster’ terminology as though that makes it different.

The Bomber, in all his guises, is the fellow who tried to blow up the airplane coming into Detroit.

Galen’s commentary is entitled “Nappy, you’re doing a heck of a job”. He draws the title from George Bush’s remark to Michael Brown, then head of FEMA, after the trip to New Orleans: “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job.”

As Galen points out, we all know that was more of that smoke and mirrors and wishful thinking. “Brownie” sucked at his job, and it showed. FEMA, by the way, comes under DHS. Yup. It’s Nappie’s baby.

Just as Napolitano sucks at her job, and it shows.

Nappie said this, of the bomber:

“One thing I want to point out is that the system worked. Everybody played an important role here. The passengers and crew of the flight took appropriate action.”

As we all know, Nappie has backpedaled ferociously on that one. Obama delayed his comments for a few days after the incident, and didn’t really say anything until Nappie had a chance to backtrack and complain that her comment had been taken out of context. It had not, of course, but she said it had been, and with this particular regime, saying it’s so makes it so. Just ask Press Secretary Robert “Giggles” Gibbs.

Galen notes:

# According to Napolitano the system that “worked” had allowed Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (UFA), a guy from Lagos, to take time out from sending me spam e-mails about how I had won the Nigerian national lottery because my e-mail address had been selected out of the 87 trillion e-mail addresses on the planet and if I would just send (1) a signed copy of a check showing my account and bank routing number, (2) a credit card number (including the security code and expiration date), and (3) the last four digits of my social security number, he would be happy to send me the $125 million which is now sitting in a bank in Cote d’Ivoire in an account with my name on it.

# That same guy went to terrorist band camp in Yemen where he learned how to:

# Put on a pair of panties which had a very powerful explosive sewn into them;

# Talk his way onto airplanes in Lagos and Amsterdam having paid only cash and having only a small carry-on even after his father had told U.S. authorities that his son was crackers;

# Get the seat most likely to set the plane’s fuel on fire, and;

# Inject a liquid into his … well where the explosives were located, which was supposed to blow the plane out of the sky.

# That’s the system which Secretary Napolitano thinks worked.

I think Napolitano would really prefer that people be prohibited from saying anything she deems to be ‘negative’. Perhaps Nappie can come down here and be in charge of the Chamber of Commerce.

Here’s Galen’s website:

Mullings – an American CyberColumn

12/28/09

Well, wowsers!

Despite the redirection to the Wordpress blog, we're still getting a lot of hits here. So ... we're going to start cross-posting for our reading public.

Thanx and a tip of the hat to all our visitors for keeping the numbers up ...

" ... a sharp-dressed man ..."

In the investigation of 'the crotch bomber', that's who our security watchdogs are on the hunt for ...

Passport-less bomber helped to board plane by sharp-dressed man

A Sharp-dressed Man ...



And Janet Napolitano, who so authoritatively told us that "the system worked", has since backtracked and admitted her security watchdogs screwed the pooch.

Obama, having waited three days before making any comments of consquence, has directed his security minions to 'keep up the pressure on those who would attack our country'. Well, in case you were wondering why Obama usually waits a few days before making any comments on anything that might be controversial ... that's to give his henchmen and accomplices time to backtrack on previous poorly-conceived statements, make noises about being taken out of context, and all the other spin-meistering and two-stepping at which the Obamanians excel.

A point proven

So ...

Absolut Images pulled their advertising from the Tribune-Democrat. The understanding here is that this was done in retaliation for Leece and I having had the unmitigated gall to call a spade a spade, and to Ask Questions.

Like ... "Why is it OK for business owners to 'get the best price' by shopping somewhere other than locally, but not OK for customers to do the same".

We continue to ask the question, which continues to remain unanswered:

Why is there a double standard?

The owner of Absolut Images proves our point about the double standard. He has pulled his advertising from the Tribune-Democrat, thereby deciding 'not to shop locally'. He did that because he is dissatisfied with the Tribune-Democrat. But it's more than that. It's more than just going out of town to do some shopping. He is deliberately trying to damage another local business. He is negatively affecting local jobs. The advertising account managers at the Tribune-Democrat work for commissions. Absolut Images has directly damaged the income of an employee of the Tribune-Democrat, one who had nothing whatsoever to do with the articles that have driven the bug up his butt. And he did that just before Christmas. Did you know that the employee in question has two kids?

What was his point? What point does he think he made? Consider this:

The Tribune-Democrat is a local business. It has a couple of dozen employees. It has a payroll of over half a million bux annually, according to various online sources. That's 24 customers that Absolut Images just aggravated beyond reason. Absolut Images just screwed over one of their co-workers. Does anyone think that any of them are going to buy anything at Absolut Images? Do you really think that any member of their families is going to buy anything at Absolut Images? And do you think those couple of dozen no-longer-in-the-customer pool local residents are going to tell their friends "You should really shop at Absolut Images"? By the time they get done badmouthing that outfit, people will be willing to travel to Colorado Springs to avoid shopping Absolut Images.

Then we have this character using the nick "LJSupporter" making threats over on the comments section of the Tribune-Democrat:

Great rebuttal, concerning last weeks he said , she said. she said , who by the way , works for the paper, needs to remember that its the LOCAL stores, that pay her salary. He said, who by the way works for the city of La Junta, needs to realize that its the Local Stores, that pay taxes, which in turn , pay him.

Aside from the fact that LJSupporter has no idea how taxes are collected, passed through, paid, etc ... why exactly do we need to remember what he says we need to remember? Is that a threat? Are we supposed to wet our pants, quaking in fear for our jobs? It's a perfect example of how many of La Junta's business people have no real idea of the global economy in which we operate. LJSupporter should understand that we have a global readership that extends far, far beyond the Tribune-Democrat's subscription empire. Leece's articles and commentaries are picked up now on a regular basis by the home corporation, which owns on the order of 500 newspapers, almost all of which are online. Our blogging audience extends far, far beyond northern Otero County. Do you really want two pissed off writers taking you on in the global tourism market?

LJSupporter is a fool. All he and his pal at Absolut Images have done is prove our point better than anyone else could have, in any other way.

With LJSupporter's way of thinking, no wonder our population has dropped like it has, and no wonder the downtown shopping area is drying up. Is this "LJSupporter" really the best the La Junta business community can come up with?

"LJSupporter". What a pathetic moniker. You buffoon ... it's people who think like you who are killing our town, you and your tired old ways of thinking.

She said: Local shopping takes planning

He said: "... dangerous ground ..."

Shopping local: Contempt of Customer

Shoppin' local

and of course, our cowpoke's comments:

Buying local is about community

Congressional whores

From Michael Ramirez:

Amateurs

Shoppin' local: Contempt of customer

Well ... Sherry Allen, local shopping supporter, has missed the point completely in her recent letter to the editor.

For those not familiar with Allen, she writes a folksy little column wherein she goes on about 'local color'. It's fairly popular. In this column she frequently takes shots at city slickers and anyone else who doesn't have cow poop on their boots and who might not be familiar with the latest calf-pulling techniques. City slickers are portrayed as bereft of any vestiges of common sense or useful knowledge, while the cow manure crowd are portrayed as sensible, down-to-earth sons and daughters of the soil, etc, patiently tolerant (on the surface) of tourists and other buffoons.

Allen manages to undermine all the work that Ron Davis and Action 22 and the Bonds with their Explore Southeast Colorado website have done and are doing to promote tourism. Don't get it? Try this little scenario:

John and Jane Doe are a couple of CCIE's from a major networking company up in Boulder. Yep. They're probably tree-huggin' Democrats who voted for Obama. They pull down between them a couple of hundred grand a year. They have some 'disposable income' and they have recently discovered bird watching. They wouldn't know a calf-puller or a plasma cutter from a boot-scraper. They're driving their Lexus SUV through The Smile Hi City when Jane says to John ... "What a quaint little village. Shouldn't we stop?" To which John replies, "No m'dear, I've researched this area and they seem to dislike people like us. The local paper carries a column that ridicules people like us on a regular basis. Let's go on to Kansas."

Yep. An arm-chair shrink might wonder at the inferiority complex that drives such ridicule, but that's for another story.

In her letter, Allen goes on about how there is all this cool stuff available in this area. Tack stores. Western wear. Plasma cutters. That sort of thing. Huh. Thing is, a goodly number of the people who live in northern Otero County don't ranch, don't farm, and don't have cow crap on their boots. Not that there's anything wrong with cow crap on your boots, mind you. So they don't share Allen's shopping tastes. Don't believe that? Take a look at all the Eddie Bauer, Land's End, Dillard's, JC Penney, and other shipping bags that are coming into town every day on USPS and FedEx and UPS. Those are what we call 'clues'.

The one thing that Allen didn't bring up, presumably because she either missed it completely or has no way of dealing with it, is that 'do as I say, not as I do' mindset we mentioned.

So we will ask it again: Why is it acceptable for local business owners to shop outside the local area in order to 'get the best price', but it is not OK for their customers to do the same?

Then we have that illustrated even better by the fellow that runs Absolut Images. He was on the radio the other day going on about shopping local. He holds the view that no one should be allowed to say anything 'negative' about La Junta. "Especially at Christmas".

I'm not sure what he means by 'negative'. Apparently it means that if you question him shopping in Pueblo while he tells you that you cannot, you must be 'negative'.

But check the attitude of this guy. He doesn't want your opinion. He is not interested in your view as a customer unless he approves of it. In other words, his attitude is, "When I want your opinion I'll give it to you. Until then, shut yer effin' mouth."

He's pulled all of his advertising from the Tribune-Democrat in retaliation for us daring to question that 'do as I say, not as I do' attitude held by local businesses.

Who did he hurt by that? Well ... for one, he pretty much destroyed the Christmas of the kid who handled that advertising account. They work on commission. Waydago, Ballard. Kill off those local jobs. What are you going to do now? Advertise with the Pueblo Chieftain?

You see, it's that same mindset. It's OK for Ballard to express his discontent with local business - in this case the paper - but if you the customer feel some discontent ... shut yer effin' mouth; when Ballard wants your opinion he'll give it to you.

That's Contempt of Customer. Unfortunately, it seems entirely too prevalent in The Smile Hi City. And that's a big reason why you see all those incoming shipping bags on USPS, UPS and FedEx trucks.

Contempt of Customer. What a great plug for The Smile Hi City.

Oh ... another thing. We have this twit:

LJSupporter: Great rebuttal, concerning last weeks he said , she said. she said , who by the way , works for the paper, needs to remember that its the LOCAL stores, that pay her salary. He said, who by the way works for the city of La Junta, needs to realize that its the Local Stores, that pay taxes, which in turn , pay him.

This clown apparently has no idea of how the sales tax works. He seems to have the idea that the sales tax comes out of the pockets of the business owners. It does not. It comes out of the pockets of customers. People like you and me. Business owners just pass it through. So when you have a bunch of business owners driving customers away with that Contempt of Customer snottiness ... that's why sales tax is down. LJSupporter's abysmal ignorance and insular, provincial, hick-from-the-sticks mindset is exactly why the downtown area is on the skids.

Nelson throws Reid under the bus

Ben Nelson, Nebraska's prize political whore, is now backpedaling on his main pimp, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

Though he defended the exemption as a "fair deal," he said he never asked for the full federal funding that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid ended up granting his state. Nelson said he instead asked that states be allowed to refuse an expansion of Medicaid.

"This is the way Senate leadership chose to handle it. I never asked for 100 percent funding," he said.

Nelson has maintained that the only reason he even brought up Medicaid was that Nebraska Republican Gov. Dave Heineman put him up to it.

Not only is Nelson a political whore, he's a spineless little weasel as well. Note that he is also tossing Heineman under the bus.

But Heineman is tossing that little pot of dog poop right back in Nelson's lap:

After Nelson sent a letter to the governor offering to kill the Medicaid deal, Heineman acknowledged that he and other governors had "expressed concern" about the state burden for Medicaid patients. But he rejected any suggestion from Nelson that he asked for the kind of deal Reid struck.

"Under no circumstances did I have anything to do with Senator Nelson's compromise," the governor said in a written statement. "The responsibility for this special deal lies solely on the shoulders of Senator Ben Nelson."

Liars, self-seeking, pandering liars, all of them.

Other senators, a little slow on the uptake, are now getting on their knees and offering to politically fellate Senator Harry:

"Three senators came up to me just now on the (Senate) floor, and said, 'Now we understand what you did. We'll be seeking this funding too'," Nelson said.

Congressional pissants

Those pathetic buffoons that we were dumb enough to have elected to represent us in the United States Congress are whining and crying about having to 'work' Christmas Eve to pass that legislative abortion they call 'healthcare reform', and that a substantial majority of Americans call something else. Something with a lot of four-letter descriptors in the unofficial title.

Our CongressClowns 'work' 3 days a week, and then only when they are in session, as Rich Galen notes this morning.

Galen goes on to note that there are about "15 million" Americans who would love to have to work on Christmas Eve. Those people are our unemployed friends and neighbors.

It would be nice to keep those friends and neighbors in our prayers, and keep in mind that Christmas is a fine opportunity to try to live up to Christ's New Commandment, and to try to demonstrate the thought expressed in 1 John 4:17, and to offer whatever help we can rather than abdicating that responsibility completely to the government. In fact, we should offer up some prayers asking ... no ... begging ... for divine guidance for those self-serving pissants up on Capitol Hill.

I would suggest that we all have bigger fish to fry than having hissy fits over "Happy Holidays" rather than "Merry Christmas" and whether or not God is on our nickels or Obama wearing or not wearing a flag pin.

Merry Xmas.

Shoppin' local

"Shopping local" is a big deal.

It's difficult to support an economy - for example, in a small town - without that 'shoppin' local'.

Merchants are always going on about "shopping local".

Chambers of Commerce are always going on about "shopping local".

It gets to the point that if you are seen outside your "local" area, you almost want to apologize for your effrontery.

But here's the thing:

How many of the merchants who exhort us all to "shop local" actually do so, themselves? How many of them take the cheapest way out? And how does that play?

We recently looked at an article in the Raleigh News and Observer, about how crab pot manufacturers in coastal North Carolina were adapting to changing market conditions. How? By converting old crab pots into ... Christmas trees. It's a great article.

It even goes into why there is a surplus of crab pots, and why crab pot manufacturers were going out of business, and why crab 'fishermen' and other types of local seafood snaggers were having real hard times. It really has nothing to do with the economy.

It's because local merchants are screwing them. The local merchants, the same ones who extoll the virtues of North Carolina seafood, who expect the crabbers to 'shop local' - don't shop local themselves. They don't buy North Carolina seafood. They buy it from overseas. Not only is it not 'shopping local'; it isn't even shopping American.

And they seriously expect the local people to patronize their places of business.

But it gets even better.

The area where all this is happening is home to the North Carolina Seafood Festival.

Yeah. You got it. They are touting North Carolina seafood to the tourists, but they are feeding them Taiwanese shrimp and Malaysian crabcakes.

Ain' t that a kick in the butt.

So the local businesses are killing off jobs by not shopping local ... yet they expect those erstwhile customers to support them.

How's that set with them?

Not well.

But it gets even better ...

Here in southeastern Colorado, which is some seriously prime beef-raising country, we have heard a lot about how the Army is going to destroy the ranchers' way of life. Their heritage. Their lifestyle.

Dozens of businesses have pledged support. The Army has been run out of town on a rail.

How many of those local businesses that pledged support use local beef? How many of them get their beef through Sysco? How many of them actually 'shop local'?

Well ... Black Jack's Saloon, down in Trindad, serves up excellent steaks, provides a great atmosphere, and is well worth a visit. But the last time we had lunch there, they were using Sysco, not the local ranches, as a source of beef.

Doesn't say much for local beef, does it? About as much as the NC Seafood Festival says for NC seafood.

How about here? How many of the merchants who want us to 'shop local' actually shop local themselves?

This is one of those "the emperor ain't wearin' no clothes" things. I can practically guarantee you that we'll get all kinds of hate mail, to the tune of "'you're a public employee! you work for us! you owe it to us to shop local! you should be fired!"

I know this from past experience.

It's unfortunate that this is the reaction. It's a 'business as usual' reaction, and it doesn't fix anything. It's a failure to recognize the effects of that 'global economy'. Think about it. Businesses are going global. A restaurant in La Junta can buy shrimp, fish, or other seafood cheaper from sources on the other side of the world than it can from the Gulf coast or the south Atlantic coast. Think of the transportation system that supports that. Think of the communication systems that allow orders to be processed across oceans and continents, and across language and cultural barriers.

Yet our business community on the local level expects customers to continue to shop a 1955 market model.

It isn't going to happen, and the longer merchants continue to expect it to happen, and the longer merchants continue to dream of 'how it used to be', the worse the local economy is going to get. More businesses will dry up, more jobs will be lost, more people will move away.

When are the expectations of the small town commercial sector going to match the shopping habits and practices into which their customers have been forced? The global economy has changed the way they do business. It has also changed the way their customers shop. When are they going to recognize this and adapt to it?

And when are they going to stop blaming the customer for their lack of adaptation?

Ben Nelson: Political whore

Ben Nelson sold out, just like Mary Landrieu, the other most notable political whore in DC:

Nelson secured full federal funding for his state to expand Medicaid coverage to all individuals below 133 percent of the federal poverty level. Other states must pay a small portion of the additional cost. He won concessions for qualifying nonprofit insurers and for Medigap providers from a new insurance tax, and was able to roll back cuts to health savings accounts.

Nelson, a so-called 'moderate' Democrat, has been posturing over abortion. He doesn't want Federal funding for abortion. Sure. But his main reason for holding out has nothing to do with abortion; it has to do with how big a bribe Obama and Reid could pimp him with.

"Full Federal funding for Medicaid coverage ...".

Our own pair of jokers, Udall and Bennet, haven't managed to hold out for anything. They're just lockstep with the rest of the lemmings. You'd think if they're going to crap all over the country, they'd at least hold out like Nelson for some of that 'free Federal munny'.

But no ... perhaps they are just too stupid to figure it out.

Tea time ...

Here's an interesting item:

Tea Party Movement evolves as political force

What started as a conservative protest klatch has evolved into a political force with enough muscle to potentially alter the course of the 2010 mid-term elections.

The "tea party" movement that gained steam shortly after President Obama took office is seeing a surge in popularity with a string of candidates and officials willing to take up its cause and a political infrastructure that's starting to mirror that of an actual political party.

and

The Rasmussen poll spelled out the kind of vote-splitting trouble the tea party movement could stir if it forms a third party. It showed that 23 percent of people would pick a "Tea Party" candidate on a congressional ballot without knowing who that candidate is, while just 18 percent would pick the Republican. Thirty-six percent would pick a Democrat.

I'd sure vote for a Tea Party candidate over a Republican. And for sure over a Democrat.

Here's an even more interesting tidbit:

The Republican Party would prefer to invite tea partiers into the fold rather than run against them in general elections, and this may force a change in the makeup of the GOP itself.

Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said his hope is that "we can all come together."

"This is the conservative party of the country," Steele said. "We offer that ... political infrastructure, if you will, if you want to run for office or if you want to be involved politically. This is the best place to do it."

Talk about missing the boat. Steele and his compadres still think the Republicans matter.

They don't. Not in Congress, and not to a lot more voters than Steele seems to understand.

In that respect, Steele and the Republicans have much in common with Obama's press secretary, "Giggles" Gibbs. You will recall that Gibbs MTV'd the Gallup poll that showed Obama's numbers tanking.

I like Tea.

"... adapt ... improvise ... overcome ..."

Here is a great article on how the little people are coping with The New World Order:

Crab-pot makers turn traps to trees

Crabbing has been part of North Carolina's seafood fishing industry for generations. Now, the New World Order is flushing that way of life down the toilet. Note the comments in the article:

"... At 66, Harvey has seen his fishing net business dry up, watched crab-pot demand fall from 3,000 to 300 a year and lived to see the landmark Sanitary Restaurant and Fish Market in Morehead City serve shrimp from Taiwan ..."

and

It's not just crabs. Geraldine Gaskill watched fishermen at Cedar Island pull in buckets of boatloads of scallops last season only to go begging at the restaurants in Morehead City and Beaufort. "They can get it cheaper off the Sysco truck," she said.

and

"Our crab cakes, they come from Malaysia," said David West, a chef at Sanitary Restaurant who makes trees part time for Fisherman Creations. "It's all pasteurized. Don't get me wrong. The seafood is good.

"It's just not local."

It's just not local.

The Sanitary Restaurant and Fish Market is one of coastal North Carolina's premier seafood restaurants. Or it was. We won't be going there on our next visit.

It is also one of the sponsors of ... The North Carolina Seafood Festival ... which takes place every year in Morehead City.

This is the mission of the NC Seafood Festival:

* Promote the positive social and economic impact of the seafood industry on the citizens of North Carolina;
* Educate the public about seafood and its importance to the state economy;
* Publicize the wide variety of seafood indigenous to North Carolina and provide the opportunity for people to enjoy it;
* Boost tourism and recreation in eastern North Carolina in the non-summer months;
* Establish a scholarship program for educational pursuits related to the seafood industry;
* Provide the opportunity for North Carolina non-profit, civic, church, and educational organizations to raise funds through participation in the festival.


Yet the seafood businesses and related businesses sponsoring this thing don't serve NC seafood. Because they can buy foreign seafood cheaper through Sysco.

Well I guess that's good business.

Until the tourists find out.

See? Another example of business owners going on about 'shopping local' ... yet the business owners don't shop local themselves. I pity that poor guy at Sanitary who let the cat out of the bag. I wonder if he still has a job.

I don't think we'll be spending any tourist bucks in Morehead City any time soon.

I can tell you that there is no comparison between real Core Sound shrimp and crabs in Davis, North Carolina, and farm-raised Taiwanese shrimp and Malaysian crab cakes in Morehead City, home of North Carolina's so-called 'seafood festival'.

The people running those restaurants and businesses, and that sham called the North Carolina Seafood Festival should be ashamed of themselves.

"... the Way and the Truth and the Life ..."

"Steve", one of our readers, has made this comment to the "Obama hosts White House Muslim Day of Prayer" post:

I find it amazing that folks tend to defend Muslim worship … but it’s the dastardly Christians that are just so evil. Christians are continually labled as hypocrits and many are; it’s just odd that no one points out the hypocricy of the “religion of peace”. Except perhaps this lady:
http://stevex09.wordpress.com/2009/12/10/wafa-sultan-debating-islamic-cleric/

"Steve" is in error on a couple of fronts. First, we here at Blogger Central have made a number of posts, some of them downright scathing, on "The Religion of Peace". Searching WritingPlaces will demonstrate this. Second, many other bloggers, such as Michelle Malkin, have posted repeatedly on "The Religion of Peace", and have correctly used the term as a facetious slapdown of Islamic fundamentalism.

But that's the small potatoes.

What is more disturbing about "Steve's" comment is his apparent distaste for 'defending' Muslim worship. From his other comments, we presume that "Steve" is a Christian, or at least identifies himself as one. We also presume from an admittedly limited context and syntax that "Steve" is an American (a politically incorrect term used by middle-aged white gasbags such as myself to identify citizens of the United States). We are also presuming that "Steve" is white, also based on that context and syntax. I suppose that makes me racist middle-aged white gasbag as well as just politically incorrect. But we can discuss my social inadequacies some other time.

"Steve's" viewpoint is a sterling testimonial for the concept of separation of church and state, and a sterling testimonial as to the lack of understanding of those 'American values' that American 'Christians', especially white ones, like to go on about.

"... defend Muslim worship ..."

Yes, "Steve", I will defend Muslim worship, just as I defend your Christian worship, no matter how hypocritically unsavory I often find both to be. That's part of those "American values", and it's part of why I spent all that time in the armed forces of these United States, and it's part of why I spent all those years as a police officer, cleaning up society's messes and wiping the tears of victims of violence and rage, of intolerance and hate ... all of which, , incidentally, were always justified as 'righteous' by the inflicters thereof.

Islamic worship in these United States is one of those God-given rights, even though which God is at play is somewhat murky. Generally, Islamic worship in this country is in fact peaceful. Generally, Christian worship in this country is in fact peaceful.

If Christians want to have one of those "Million Man" marches in Washington, DC, why shouldn't they?

If Muslims want to have a Muslim National Day of Prayer in Washington, DC, why shouldn't they?

Muslims have their fringe groups in this country, just as do Christians. Are they representative of all Muslims?

After all, the White Christian Knights of the Ku Klux Klan or whatever they call themselves can hold rallies. After all, Fred Phelps and his perverted, hate-mongering "Christians" can insult veterans and their families, and spew hate-filled invective as they wish. After all, the Reverend Wright can spew his version of "Christian" love, along with all the rabble-rousing garbage from Reverend (what a joke) Jesse Jackson and his ilk. All in the name of Christ. Are these people representative of all Christians?

What is the difference between the White Christian Knights of the KKK bombing black churches, and members of the Sword and the Shield of Allah blowing up crowded buses? Both are driven by religious perversion.

Where we see the real lunacy of Islam is overseas, in the Middle East and in other countries that do not have a foundation in Rule of Law. Where we see the real lunacy of Islam is in the Islamic republics; in those countries where government is driven by, controlled by, religion. Where we see the real lunacy of Islam is where a corrupt culture perverts the religious teachings, where morally corrupt clerics drive the hate based on selective extractions from the Koran. We see the same mindset with the likes of Fred Phelps and his selective extractions from the Bible. The difference is that in this country, people like Phelps cannot get a sufficient hold to be more than an aggravation, or in the case of the KKK and its version of Christianity, any more than a series of criminal episodes. It is the rule of law and the separation of church and state that keeps it so. It is rule of law and the separation of church and state that keeps Christians in check. A "Christian Republic" is as much an insult to God as is an "Islamic Republic". God save us from 'selective literalists'.

"... true and saving religion consists in the inward persuasion of the mind, without which nothing can be acceptable to God." - John Locke

"... God is not pleased when people believe because they have to. God wants people to believe because that is what they desire." - Alicia Gossman-Steeves

The concept of separation of church and state prevents them from going any further than ranting their mindless rhetoric and spamming the world with it. Whenever a religion, any religion, gains control of a government, or even sufficient influence if not official government status, religious lunacy will prevail. Even with Christianity. The hints of it are in the irrational spamming that started this discussion with "Obama hosts White House Muslim Day of Prayer", a series of lies and factual error deliberately designed to stir that lunacy. The truth of it lies in the history of Christianity, whenever Christianity has been able to drive the government. The hands of Christians down through the ages are not anointed with the Blood of the Lamb, but are dripping the blood of innocents ... just as we see dripping today from the hands of Islamic fundamentalists. Do we really want that kind of thinking, driven by irrational religious zealotry, willing to spread lies, willing to oppress and browbeat anyone not seen as a True Believer in The One True God, as the power behind our government? Don't we have enough trouble with the secular government we have? Does anyone really think the type of attitudes and behaviors we are seeing from American "Christians" are morally superior to what we have?

Christ is ".. the Way and the Truth and the Life ...". He is the Light of the world. His followers would do well to remember that. If they ever truly understood it. From the frenzied, hateful rhetoric being spread in his name by those followers, I don't think they do. The decline of the Christian church in America is not due to the influence of an immoral liberal left but rather to the example set by America's 'Christians" ... the Pharisees of modern times.

Obama hosts National Muslim Day of Prayer at White House!!!

Yeah, that's what the "Christians" are spreading around on the Internet now, in a spirit of Christian love as they move to celebrate the birth of Christ. Unfortunately, like pretty much all of the crap that the Christian Right spreads around, it is exactly that. Crap.

It is true, however, that The Obamessiah is guilty as charged by our self-righteous moral watchdogs. He did in fact cancel the National Day of Prayer service:

Obama cancels National Day of Prayer service

For once, he did the right thing. While Truman inaugurated the National Day of Prayer, it is only Bush and Reagan who made it an official White House religious service. An 'ecumenical service'.

Obama observed:

"For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus and non-believers."

Which is true. Bush invited Protestants (who have a lock on the One True God, who is, after all, a registered Republican if I understand Dobson correctly), Catholics (who are not really 'real' Christians if I understand the position of many Protestants correctly, being but one step removed from Mormons, JW's, and other heathen pretenders), and Jews (whom we all know about from those paragons of Christian values, the KKK - "bringing a message of hope and deliverance to White Christian America" - and Fred Phelps of www.godhatesfags.com).

Of course, when he canceled the service, the Christian Fundies went alpha sierra, throwing fits, gnashing their teeth in presumably literal as well as figurative sense, and exuding hate and discontent, all in Christ's name. I'm not sure who they decided to boycott and drive out of business, but I'm sure they must have drawn a Target on someone. They always do. (waiting now for someone to point out that Christ Targeted, with premeditated malice aforethought, the money-lenders in the temple ... so boycotting Godless heathen wishers of "Happy Holidays" is somehow Scripturally justified ...).

Meanwhile ... where were we ... ah ... the Godless heathens who are ruining our Christian nation ...

Obama and the National Day of Prayer

The National Day of Prayer Task Force, a privately funded organization that focuses on mobilizing the Christian community, says it's disappointed in this year's toned down observance, but other groups say the president needs to go a step farther -- and ignore the day altogether.

"It's not his job to tell people to pray," said David Silverman, national spokesperson for the organization American Atheists.
"We are very happy he did away with the George W. Bush-era celebrations and party, but we wish he wouldn't do it at all. ... When church and state are separate, separate is separate," he said.

Well ... that raises another stink, doesn't it. Silverman, like many of his brethren, has difficulty with that 'separation' thing. He sees it as black and white (no relationship to the KKK and Fred Phelps thing mentioned earlier), when in fact it is not. For more on this, I direct your attention to:

A 'non-religious' Christmas, which examines the difference between 'de-religiousing' a religious holiday in the name of political correctness and the state endorsing religion

and

Separation of church and state which led Stan Riley to a state of emotional apoplexy and caused him to pass judgment on Leece's 'fitness' as a 'Christian' for having dared to fail to accept his sanctimonious position on the subject: "I thought you were at one time a Nazarene ..."... thereby demonstrating the pastorate's capacity for pompous asininity.

Was Bush's 'ecumenical' service sufficiently diverse to present the counter-argument that he - as President - was not endorsing a specific religion, and using his influence to peddle same? I would think so, but what do I know, being a simple-minded Separatist myself, and not a learned 'selective literalist' student of Scripture, who can pick and choose what Biblical aspect is going to be shoved down everyone's throats today.

As for the Muslim ceremony at the White House ... unfortunately for the Rumor Mill, Obama did no such thing. But on September 25, Muslims organized their own "National Prayer Day", which was held without White House sanction outside the White House, actually over on Capitol Hill, on public property. The nerve of those people, exercising that First Amendment thing. You would think they would know their place as second- or even third-class citizens, not being, like, you know, 'Christians' (aka 'real' Americans) and go back to their mosques or whatever.

When The Obamessiah canceled the service at the White House on the real National Day of Prayer, some of our local pastors, in a fit of Christian understanding and love, threw royal shit fits here in town, taking their own opportunities to politicize Christ and religion. But that's another story for another time ...

Go in peace, swaddled in Christ's love and forgiveness. Would that it were that easy ... it's 12 days to Christmas, and like many Americans, I am sick to death of 'Christians'.