Tuesday, November 30, 2004

pinions of buddy don: whar is all our good news frum iraq?

tiz commonly sed by mr bush n members of his addministrayshun that the media dont report the good news frum iraq. mr bush is ownself sed, "We're making good progress in Iraq. Sometimes it's hard to tell it when you listen to the filter."

i half to add mitt i aint red much good news frum thar in the longest. could it be jes a nuther case of media bias a'filtern out all the good news?

ye mite could thank so. fer instunts, why aint we seein pitchers of skools n hospitulls n power generayshun facilties n sewers n replacements fer all the bildins that wuz bombed in order to liverate them iraqis -- why aint we seein film on the evenin news of such thangs bein bilt? whars the kids playin baseball games with soljers, witch lease we gut that much frum afghanistan befor they gut back to thar bizness of growin poppies fer the heroin trade.

whilst i wuz trine to figger thisn out, i run across a famus email writ by a woman name of Farnaz Fassihi, witch shes one of them jurnalist over thar who aint a'givin us all that good news we wonta see. but she writ out her eggscuse n ye kin deecide fer yer ownself whuther shes jes filtern out the news by readin her eggscuse fer not gittin us the good news we need:
Being a foreign correspondent in Baghdad these days is like being under virtual house arrest. Forget about the reasons that lured me to this job: a chance to see the world, explore the exotic, meet new people in far away lands, discover their ways and tell stories that could make a difference.

Little by little, day-by-day, being based in Iraq has defied all those reasons. I am house bound. I leave when I have a very good reason to and a scheduled interview. I avoid going to people's homes and never walk in the streets. I can't go grocery shopping any more, can't eat in restaurants, can't strike a conversation with strangers, can't look for stories, can't drive in any thing but a full armored car, can't go to scenes of breaking news stories, can't be stuck in traffic, can't speak English outside, can't take a road trip, can't say I'm an American, can't linger at checkpoints, can't be curious about what people are saying, doing, feeling. And can't and can't. There has been one too many close calls, including a car bomb so near our house that it blew out all the windows. So now my most pressing concern every day is not to write a kick-ass story but to stay alive and make sure our Iraqi employees stay alive. In Baghdad I am a security personnel first, a reporter second.

It's hard to pinpoint when the 'turning point' exactly began. Was it April when Fallujah fell out of the grasp of the Americans? Was it when Moqtada and Jish Mahdi declared war on the U.S. military? Was it when Sadr City, home to ten percent of Iraq's population, became a nightly battlefield for the Americans? Or was it when the insurgency began spreading from isolated pockets in the Sunni triangle to include most of Iraq? Despite President Bush's rosy assessments, Iraq remains a disaster. If under Saddam it was a 'potential' threat, under the Americans it has been transformed to 'imminent and active threat,' a foreign policy failure bound to haunt the United States for decades to come.

Iraqis like to call this mess 'the situation.' When asked 'how are things?' they reply: 'the situation is very bad."

What they mean by situation is this: the Iraqi government doesn't control most Iraqi cities, there are several car bombs going off each day around the country killing and injuring scores of innocent people, the country's roads are becoming impassable and littered by hundreds of landmines and explosive devices aimed to kill American soldiers, there are assassinations, kidnappings and beheadings. The situation, basically, means a raging barbaric guerilla war. In four days, 110 people died and over 300 got injured in Baghdad alone. The numbers are so shocking that the ministry of health -- which was attempting an exercise of public transparency by releasing the numbers -- has now stopped disclosing them.

Insurgents now attack Americans 87 times a day.
tiz purty obveeus that this reporter has dun gone over to tuther side, the side of pessimism n doubt. why caint they send sum of them braver reporters over thar to git the real stories n good news? why caint they send braver jurnlists lack charles krauthammer, ann coulter, joe scarborough, rush limbaugh, sean hannity, bill o'reilly, cal thomas, tony blankley, david brooks, william kristol, etc, etc, etc? woodnt they be able to git us sum pitchers of all that good news thats a'goin on?

corse, ye kin dream bout miraculls, but they aint too lackly to cum true.

so till then, i reckun we gone half to live with nuthin but bad news. fer instunts, kin ye bleeve that thar librul new york times wood cum out with a story lack U.S. Officials Say Iraq's Forces Founder Under Rebel Assaults?

is they trine to undermine our troops? why wood they be claimin that them iraqi troops aint inny good? dont they know that ye caint git much frum folks ye insult?

n these aint yer average insults! insted, thar insultin them iraqi soljers n po-leecemen by callin em cowards n sayin that they let tharself git intimidated by car bombs n execushuns of other iraqi po-leecemen n soljers. they claim they deesert thar posts when attacked, that they dun been infiltrated by the insurgents, whoever they is, that they caint even be trusted not to shoot our own troops, witch our troops has dun been told to be keerful n duck n cover whenever they gut them iraqi allies at thar back.

these is sum greevous insults. that bit bout infiltrashun n layin down thar guns n lettin the insurgents git thar weppons: aint all that sum kinda treason?

so cum on now. lets git our bravest jurnlists over thar, our rushes n seans n anns n bills n such lack. go git us sum good news, even ifn ye half to make it up . . . oh thats rite! how could i fergit: they been a'makin up good news bout iraq frum the safety n cumfert of thar safe haven here in the states all along! such courage! tiz its own reward, no?

but why cain they git us no pitchers of all that good news thar a'makin up? a lil film of kids a'studyin in a brand new skool whar everthang wurks? folks a'walkin the streets of bagdad as if they wuz really free? picnics n children playin n crowds at soccer matches n such? kin ye magine whut a sensayshun twood be to show sum of that good footage thats bein filterd out?

if only they could do that! twood show them pessimists! better, twood shut up all them librul types once n fer all!

Monday, November 29, 2004

pinions of buddy don: unpleasunt facks

face the facks: we dont lack bad news. even ifn the bad news is jes whut we need to make the rite deecishun, folks jes dont lack to git bad news.

thays minny eggzamples of this problem, my own daddy bein a purrfeckly sad one. he wuz a verr stoick feller, dint lack to go to no docters nor git speshul treetment nor nuthin lack that. whenever he cum back frum worl war two, witch he wuz a marine corps raider n saw lots of his brothers fall, he went up into the cumberland moutains n dint cum out fer weeks, jes a'livin on the land in the ruffest of circumstantses.

twernt on a counta his hatin bad news that he dint go to the docters much. twuz on a counta how he bleeved most ailments folks cumplains about is thangs thats only in yer hed. he figgerd sum of the medicin docters give ye ackshly duz more harm than good. so he hated to go n wood git thru mos innythang by jes tuffin it out. he dint stay home frum wurk much even when he had a cold or flu or even when he wuz a'runnin a fever.

he passed on in 1996, dyin of renal failure only the reel problem wuz sumthin that had dun started a long time befor that. he had been havin sum pains n sum nausea, but he kep it hid frum mama longs he could. by the time she gut him to see the docters, twuz a lil too late. he had dun had cancer of his gall bladder, witch they could take that out all rite, but problem wuz how it had dun spread to his pancreas, n thay aint much them docters kin do fer that.

twuz sum reel bad news to here n by the time we had dun herd it, twuz too late to do nuthin fer im but try to make his death as easy as possibull. twuznt to be easy, tho. n thats all on a counta hot havin the facks he needed in time.

we gut us a simlar situwayshun a'gone on in our cuntry. we dont lack to read bad news nor watch in on tv n sints thonly thang we really seem to keer bout is profit n sints profit deepends on ratins, thay aint no profit in reportin the bad news. knowin he had cancer two years befor he died wooda been very upsettin, but ifn he hadda knowd bout it, he mite could have dun lived thru till he gut well agin.

in our cuntry, we are havin the same kinda problem. we dont wonta here no bad news frum iraq. corse, we dont have no censorship here, lease not by the gummint add mittin to cuntrollin the news, but do we need it ifn our news organizayshuns is willin to censor thar ownself? reminds me of a remark made by a feller name of walter hale hamilton. he sed sumthin back in the 1930s that is scary to read today:
This private control and formal independence from the government is the genius of the current media system. Clearly, it is superior to, and more refined than, the flawed Goebbels model as an engine of social control. As Meiklejohn’s mentor, Walter Hale Hamilton, put it in the 1930s: "Business succeeds rather better than the state in imposing restraints upon individuals, because its imperatives are disguised as choices." So it is, in the past decade, that the number of working journalists has been cut, that the foreign bureaus of U.S. media firms have been shut down, that the content of the media has been shaded to suit the needs of the owners, the advertisers, and the business community in general. Had these things occurred as the result of government edicts, it would have been regarded as a gross violation of the First Amendment, perhaps precipitating the worst constitutional crisis since the U.S. Civil War. Watergate, by comparison, would have looked like a day at the beach.
michael massing has a articull on this verr topick in the december 16 issue of the new york review of books. ye orta read it fer yer ownself, only ye wood half to buy a copy since it aint online. but tiz wurth the $4.50 ye wood half to spend jes fer that one articull on a counta how he eggsplains all the news we aint a'gittin frum over thar. ifn we wuz a'gittin it, we woodnt feel so comfy bout the war. the articull is long, so ye orta read the hole thang, but heres a cuple of the points he makes. fer one thang, he shows bout the self-censorship of the press:
Another reason why news organizations don't write about such matters is suggested in the recenly released DVD version of Michael Moore's movie Fahrenheit 9/11. It contains as an added feature an interview with Urban Hamid, a Swedish journalist who in late 2003 accompanied an American platoon on a raid in Samarra. Hamid's experience was similar to Nir Rosen's, with the difference that he caught it on tape. In it, we see soldiers using an armored personnel carrier to break down the gates of a house. We see the soldiers rush in with their rifles pointed ahead, and terrified women rushing out. An elderly man on crutches is rousted up and a plastic bag is placed over his head. The soldiers go through the family documents, trying to determine if this man is connected with the insurgency, but because they don't speak Arabic they can't really tell. Nonetheless, they take him to a detention center, where he joins dozens of others, their heads all sheathed in plastic. Celebrating the arrests, the soldiers take pictures of one another with their "trophies." One soldier admits that he's surprised they didn't find more weapons. "The sad thing for these guys is that we'll probably let them go because their names don't match up," he says.

In the interview, Hamid says he asked many Iraqis if they'd heard of things like this, and they all told him "of course." "It's preposterous," he says, "to think there is any way you win somebody's hearts and minds by imposing such a criminal and horrible policy." Hamie says that he tried to sell his tape to the "Swedish media" but got no response. He then approached the "American media," with the same result. "It's obvious," he says, "that the mainstream media exercise some kind of self-censorship in which people know that this is a hot potato and don't touch it, because you're going to get burned."
of corse, sum of the censorin is dun with hep frum the gummint. heres the bit bout Nir Rosen that mr massing mentchuns in the quote:
One journalist who has seen this firsthand is Nir Rosen. A twenty-seven-year-old American freelance reporter, Rosen speaks Arabic (a rare skill among Western reporters in Iraq), has a dark complexion (allowing him to mix more easily with Iraqis), and prefers when in Iraq to hang out with locals rather than with other journalists. (In the late spring, he managed to get inside Falluja at a time when it was a death trap for Western reporters; he described his chilling findings in the July 5 issue of The New Yorker.) Seeing Iraq from the perspective of the Iraqis, Rosen got a glimpse of how persistently and routinely American actions alienated them. "People have to wait three hours in a traffic jam because a US army convoy is going by," he notes. "Guns are pointed at you wherever you go. People are constantly shouting at you. Concrete walls are everywhere. Violence is everywhere."

In October 2003, Rosen spent two weeks embedded with a US Army unit near the Syrian border. In sweeps through neighborhoods, he said, the Americans used Israeli-style tactics—making mass arrests in the hope that one or two of those scooped up will have something useful for them. "They'll hold them for ten hours in a truck without food or water," he told me. "And 90 percent of them are innocent." Writing of his experience in Reason magazine, Rosen described how a unit he accompanied on a raid broke down the door of a house of a man they suspected of dealin in arms. When the man, named Ayoub, did not immediately respond to their orders, they shot him with nonlethal bullets. "The floor of the house was covered with his blood," Rosen wrote. "He was dragged into a room and interrogated forcefully as his family was pushed back against their garden's fence."

Ayoub's frail mother, he continued, pleaded with the interrogating soldier to spare her son's life, protesting his innocence:
He pushed her to the grass along with Ayoub's four girls and two boys, all small, and his wife. They squatted barefoot, creaming, their eyes wide open in terror, clutching one another as soldiers emerged with bags full of documents, photo albums and two compact discs with Saddam Hussein and his cronies on the cover. These CDs, called The Crimes of Saddam, are common on every Iraqi street and, as their title suggests, they were not made by Saddam supporters. But the soldiers couldn't read Arabic and saw only the picture of Saddam, which was proof enough of guilt. Ayoub was brought out and pushed on to the truck.
After holding Ayoub for several hours in a detention center, the soldiers determined that he was innocent, and they later let him go.

Rosen believes that such encounters are common. The American soldiers he saw "treat everybody as the enemy," he said, adding that they can be very abusive and violent. "If you're a boy and see soldiers beating the shit out of your father, how can you not hate the Americans?" He added: "Why doesn't anybody write about this in The New York Times or The Washington Post? The AP always has people embedded—why don't they write about it?"

One reason, he suggests, is that embedded journalists who write negatively about the US military find themselves "blacklisted." It happened to Rosen: a series of stories he wrote for Asia Times about his experience while embedded elicited an angry letter from the commander and the public affairs officer of the unit he accompanied, and he has not bee allowed to beocme embedded since. Other correspondents told me of similar experiences.
ye probly dun red bout how kevin sites has been threatend on a counta doin his job whenever he wuz a'carryin the camera that wuz runnin when that marine in falluja shot the injured insurgent. folks ack lack he is part of the enemy? he wuz shootin with a camera, not a gun, but thar blamin him (btw, i caint judge that thar marine on a counta i coulda been so made to whar i wooda dun the same thang he dun, witch that dont make it rite, but im jes sayin tiz a verr hard thang to figger on a counta how them marines had dun run into booby-trapped bodies befor they gut thar). ye mite even thank tiz the librul media trine to brang down them publicans ifn ye ever see these kinda thangs on tv. but ye aint lackly too since thays no profit in it.

long time after daddy had dun died n been buried out on edgemont road, i ast a docter i knew whuther he mite coulda been saved ifn he had known the truth bout whut he had. feller tole me he woodnt lie to me n that ifn daddy dun had cancer in his pancreas, he wood mos lackly have sufferd horribull thangs n then died bout the same time. but ifn they had discoverd it, they mite coulda saved him befor the cancer had spread. thays a lotta wooda, shoulda, coulda talk ye here after sumbidy is ded. ye caint tell fer sartin, but knowin the awful truth mite coulda hepped him. we wont never know now since he dint git it n died.

i hope we git better results frum not knowin the truth bout whut is bein dun in our name over in iraq.

Friday, November 26, 2004

blessins of buddy don: how bout them apples?

befor i could even git the furst blessin counted this mornin, i run across this here story writ by a feller name of Thomas E. Ricks, witch he dun got hisself em bedded over with our troops in iraq. turnt out he dun whut i reckommended back on october 28, 2003, witch whut i sed a bidy orta do is read T. E. Lawrences book name of Seven Pillars of Wisdom. once he dun it, he writ this articull name of Lessons of Arabia n gut it published in the washington post.

heres a lil snippet sos ye kin see why ye orta go read it fer yer ownself:
Let me emphatically state here that I am not likening the cause of the Iraqi insurgents to that of Arab rebels against the Turks. I was reading this as a tactical manual of military operations against another military, not of terrorist attacks on civilians.

In those terms, the tactics employed by Lawrence and his Arab tribesmen were strikingly similar to those used against U.S. forces today in Iraq. American truck convoys constantly come under attack, sometimes by rocket-propelled grenades but most often by anonymous roadside bombs. Likewise, for most of his war, Lawrence wasn't interested in direct confrontations with the Turkish military. Rather, he strove to avoid the set-piece slugfests that Western militaries -- and Western journalists -- tend to think of as the essence of war, such as the recent battle in Fallujah. He relentlessly chipped away at the railroad that supplied Turkish forces deployed deep in what is now Jordan and Saudi Arabia, dropping rail bridges and blowing up locomotives.

"Ours should be a war of detachment, . . . of never engaging the enemy," he writes in explaining his concept of operations. At another point, he comments, "Ours were battles of minutes."

When I read his description of why he thought his outgunned, outmanned, unsophisticated force could prevail, a chill ran down my spine. His rebellion, he wrote, faced "a sophisticated alien enemy, disposed as an army of occupation in an area greater than could be dominated effectively from fortified posts." Meanwhile, his side was supported by "a friendly population, of which some two in the hundred were active, and the rest quietly sympathetic to the point of not betraying the movements of the minority."

He also came to understand that in waging or countering an insurgency, the prize is psychological, not physical. At one point, he notes in an aside, while waiting for reinforcements "we could do little but think -- yet that . . . was the essential process."
whenever i wuz lil n mama tole me sumthin sprizin, she wood ast 'how bout them apples?' twuz a way of sayin, 'bet ye never speckted that to happen, did ye?'

i wuz bout gittin to whar i dint speck nobidy to read that thar book n talk bout it, but now i kin ast that questchun how bout them apples?

Thursday, November 25, 2004

blessins of buddy don: them yunguns

theys fixin us thanksigivin dinner n told us we dint need to brang nuthin ceptn our empty bellies. nuff sed.

corse we gone brang em sum sangle malt.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

blessins of buddy don: thanks fer livin here

in keepin with this week of thanksgivin, today i wood lack to give thanks fer the fack that i am stuck a'livin up here in the new york metropoltun area. thays minny a sackrifice a person has to make to live here, but ye git repayment. or to put it a nuther way, thays a reason so minny folks wonts to live up in here. since i been a'givin thanks fer grate scotches at good prices the past cuple days, today tiz time to give thanks fer grate places to buy good scotches, even ifn they mite cum at hi prices. no doubt thays more places than i know bout, but whenever me n miz bd find out bout a new'un, i keep addin em to the list. heres whut i gut so far:
  1. park avenue liquor store -- tiz one of the worls best places to find all kinds of sangle malt scotches. ye kin spend over $5,000 fer jes one bottle of macallans thar, witch they gut em a colleckshun of macallan vintages frum years as far back as the 30s. they gut em over 200 differnt kinds n sum of em ye caint git no whars else. fer instunts, they had em a speshul bottlin of a laphroaig unchillfiltered sangle cask malt that has got to be one of the bes three we ever tasted, n we dun gut a list of bout 100 we tasted. twuz bottled jes fer that thar likker store, so ye caint git it nowhars else.
  2. astor places wines n liquors -- taint got as minny choices as park avenue, but sum of thar thangs is cheaper.
  3. warehouse wines n spirits -- bes place in town to git a wide variety of standurd stuff at incredible prices.
  4. crossroads wines n liquors -- thisn dont have much, but whut they gut is even cheapern whut ye find at warehouse.
corse, ye gut plenty of places in town to git ye a drank by the glass n sum of em has good colleckshuns of sangle malt scotches, three in particlar:
  1. keens. dun writ bout it a number of times. they have sangle malt scotch tastins now n agin. nuff sed.
  2. st. andrews. tiz a lil piece of scotland close by times square. grate whisky dinners.
  3. the ginger man. good thang bout thisn is how we dun herd bout it havin a grate lineup of sangle malts, but we aint been thar yet. mayhap we kin make it durin them holidays.
corse thays a minny uther blessins ye git fer livin here. cheap transportashun -- costs me jes $65 a munth fer unlimited rides on the bus to man hattan. plenty entertainment in the city that never sleeps. grate wurk opportunties. plenty of folks frum all over the worl, so tiz a good place to practiss other langwages. nice parks. beautiful waterfrunt. but the bes blessin of all up in here is miz bd, witch shes the bes thang bout my life n this is whar she's a'livin.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

blessins of buddy don: more thanks

tiz a week fer givin yer thanks so im a'countin sum of the minny blessins i gut. all them blessins is proof that god continues to bless n reward the undeservin. yesterdy i give sum thanks fer three sangle malt scotches that ye kin git fer under $20 over in man hattan. thays all rite nice cun bettern blends, witch i hope to do a lil revu of them blends by n by.

but today is dun planned fer two of the gratest scotches at inny price, n thang is, ye kin get em fer under $40 fer a bottle.
  1. furstn is glenmorangie ten year. ye kin git thisn over in man hattan fer $24 sum places n $27 otherns, but ifn ye dont shop round, ye kin pay as much as $35-$40. dont matter the price ye pay, ye a'gone git one of the grate scotches. tiz cumplex as kin be yet delicut. ye git a fine nose that aint too intents. the flavor jes seems to git bigger the longer ye hold it in yer mouth. twill put a smile on mos inny face. nuther thang bout thisn is how taint verr peaty, witch that means taint so hard fer folks to adapt to. taint everbidy that lacks the taste of peat n one of the minny blessins bout sangle malt scotch is how thays so minny differnt tastes. ifn ye aint never tride no sangle malt befor, thisn could be jes the thang to git ye started. warning: it could turn into a obsesshun.
  2. the second one i wonta menchun today is laphroaig 10 year. thisn mite be priced innwhars frum $34 to $50 but ye orta shop round till ye git sumthin under $40. twill be wurth it on a counta thisns one of the mos famus tastes of inny sangle malt. tiz known fer bein a scotch folks eethur luvs or hates. at whisky fest, a feller sed sumthin long the lines of how tiz the scotch ye luv to hate n hate to luv. that dont wurk fer me n miz bd on a counta how we jes luv it to whar tiz one of our faverts, with the nose of a campfire, an oily vibrunt taste thats gut sum of the best peat flavor ye kin git, a lil iodine, a lil seaweed. furst time we tasted it, seem lack we could magine sittin by a campfire on a verr isolated beach. tiz that eloquent. corse, ifn ye dont lack the taste n smell of peat, thisn aint fer ye. fack is, tiz so eggstreme a taste that durin prohibishun, twuz let in to the u. s. of a. on a counta how folks importin it sed twuz medicin. one sniff n them revenooers agreed. n thay wuz rite: tiz a good medicin fer mos inny keer that mite ail ye.
corse thays moren good sangle malt scotch to be thankful fer, but tiz sumthin me n miz bd dint know nuthin bout last thanksgivin. also, tiz only a lil ice shavin offn the tip of the iceberg of blessins we all orta be a'countin more often.

Monday, November 22, 2004

blessins of buddy don: week fer givin thanks

thays a minny a thang ye kin give thanks fer n i hope to menchun a few of em this week. furst off, thays three sangel malts that ye kin generly git fer under $20 a bottle. i am thankful fer em! here they are:
  1. speyburn: we gut thisn fer a lil over $13 over in man hattan, so ye mite find it cheeper wharever ye be. tiz a speyside malt with a delicate sweetness n jes a nuff peat to remind ye of the smoke used in maltin. ye caint beat it at the price, n i wood be innerested to see how twood rank in a blind tastin
  2. glen garioch:thisns a highland malt n ye call glen garee accordin to sum them books i read bout scotch. tiz a nuther nice malt, that ye kin git fer under $20, tho in this case, tiz jes barely under $20 over in man hattan. thisns gut everthang ye look fer in a malt that aint frum islay: sum strangth, sum legs, sum grate toffee delicussy. agin, i wunder what twood rank in a blind tastin.
  3. lastn i wonta menchun today is bowmore legend, witch we gut us a bottle of thisn fer $18 n twuz a bargain. taint gut the oily iodine medicinull qualties sum of us luv in yer laphroaig n lagavulin, but tis a nice n easy way to git yer islay malt fix without spendin too much money. tiz a goodn to use in showin folks that aint fans of islay malts jes how easy they kin go down.
me n miz bd is plannin to have thanksgivin over to our sons place. we lackly gone brang im n his partner a bottle of malt. mayhap we kin brang two since these uns is so cheap. thays a'gone be thanksgivin all round!

Friday, November 19, 2004

land speculayshun of buddy don: real state in scotland

Plot No: 24####

dun gut me a lil plot of land over thar on in scotland on islay. that laphroaig distillry pays me rent on it, one dram of laphroaig ever year long as i live n long as i go thar to fetch the rent.

ye orta git ye a plot while ye kin! jes purchus a bottle of laphroaig, witch ye kin git laphroaig 10 year up here in man hattan fer bout $35 n i bet tiz cheeper in uther places. tiz bout the bes bargain in sangle malt scotch wharever ye find it. once ye git it, ye kin use the bar code to git ye yer land.

then ye git to go colleck!

pinions of buddy don: flip flop makes publick appearunts

flip [publican passed house ethics rule of 1993]:
The original rule was adopted by Republicans in 1993 when they were the minority party attacking the Democratic-controlled leadership as corrupt and arrogant. The rule required House GOP leaders to step aside if indicted for a crime that could bring a sentence of at least two years in state or federal prison.
flop [publican passed house ethics rule of 2004]:
"It's just interesting that the first order of business following the election, on the part of the Republican majority, is to lower their ethical standards for their leaders in the Congress by saying that if indicted, you can serve,'' Pelosi told reporters after the Democrats in the House unanimously re-elected her and Minority Whip Steny Hoyer of Maryland.
taint all publicans a'fallin fer it, as shown in this quote:
Some Republicans, at least, remember what they stood for 10 years ago. "We took a strong stand in 1994 to make clear the Republican conference would live by a higher standard than our Democratic colleagues," Rep. Chris Shays, a Connecticut Republican, said in a statement. Shays also told reporters: "We won election in '94 because we were going to be different, and what I continue to see is a slow but very consistent erosion in what made us different."

Thursday, November 18, 2004

fish of buddy don: is fish lack folks?

i aint never sed nuthin bout this tank of africun cichlids me n miz bd has sittin in our livin room. tiz a big un, 6 feet long by 2 feet deep by 2.5 feet tall, witch thats good fer holdin about 155 gallons of water.

we gut it stocked with africun cichlids from lake malawi, mosly whut they call pseudotropheus saulosi, but thays also a pair of catfish in thar, witch thar scientifick name is synodontis but we named ourn felix n fritz, witch we dun had felix fer nigh onto 9 years n he wuz purty well full growd by the time we gut im.

thang bout cichlids is how they dont use thar color to hide so they kin git verr britely colord, almos lack marine fish, witch they call them fish that lives in salt water 'marine.'

ifn ye aint never kep no fish or ifn ye kep gold fish or sum such, ye mite not bleeve jes how smart fish kin be. aint minny of em much smartern africun cichlids n they gut em a verr highly deeveloped soshul order, so to speak. in ever tank or pond or lil area, ye gut yer big fish, witch thatns the one that ever other fish backs down frum.

we had our tank a'goin so long that moren half the fish in it wuz born thar. they gut em a method of hatchin lil fish known as 'mouth breedin,' witch it wurks thisaway: whichever male fish kin git the female to pay im sum attenchun -- taint always the big fish, by the way -- that male gits to swimmin over by the female n a'waggin his tale, speshly his anal fin. hes gut im sum lil spots on that tale name of 'egg spots,' on a counta how whenever he gits to waggin his tail jes rite, the female gits to thankin thays real eggs (so they say, witch makes me wunder how they gut inny idee whut female fish thanks since humans caint hardly figger out whut thar a'thankin!).

inny who, the two matin fish gits into a lil dance whar furst the female puts her mouth by the males anal fin n sorta pertends to bite at it n then they swap spots so the male kin do the same thang to the female. purty soon, the female seems to burst n a passle of eggs pops out. all the fish in the tank wonta git a bite of em, but the female fish is generly quickest to git all them eggs in her mouth. once shes scooped em all in, she gets back to the bizness of the dance, witch the two fish keeps on a'doin till the male lets out his seminull contribushun to the nex generayshun. the female scoops it up, the eggs is fertil-eyesd, n she carries em in her mouth without eatin nuthin fer about a month.

we call her 'pouched' durin this period on a counta how she has a pouch of lil tiny fish jes below whar her mouth is. ifn she looks ye in the eye, ye kin see all them lil fry in her mouth, thar lil eyes lack brillyunt black dots.

after shes dun without no food fer a munth, she turns em a'loose, spreadin em out in the tank n puttin em in places whar they kin hide. thang is, tuther fishes aint gut no cumpunkshuns bout eatin em.

durin my years of keepin this tank, i seen a'minny a big fish cum n go. ye gut yer goodns n yer badns. yer goodns wont let tuther fish fite, lessn they wonta fite with him, witch the big fish is always a male. corse, ye gut yer badns, witch all they wonta do is chase all tuther fish round the tank n try to kill em.

as ye mite magine, they git em a peckin order wurked up n whenever the populayshun gits too big (thays a ebb n flow toot on a counta how they live bout 4 years at mos, lease in our tank), ye git to whar sum fish is whut we call 'banished,' witch that means they aint allowd to go no whar but up in a top corner of the tank with no perteckshun, stressd out till they die.

i dun tride savin such banished fish befor, but tiz a waste of time. ye take out the banished fish, put it into a nuther tank, n purty soon, the main tank has a nuther banished fish. ye caint stop em frum a'doon whut thar a'gone do.

corse, taint ever fish thatll take such treatment. sum of em wont give in n let tharself be banished n whenever that happens, the fish gits beat up purty bad. tuther fish generly eat off as much of thar caudal fin as they kin to keep em frum bein able to swin verr fast. after that, the fish has gut to hide as much as possibull, but twill git beat up a lot. we call fish that gits into such a state 'batterd.'

i once had a batterd fish name of stubby, on a counta how he dint have nuthin but a stubb lef fer his tail. he gut attacked ever time he cum out to eat, gittin a bite of food in while bein chased by the big fish n then goin to hide agin. i always felt fer im n wonted to git im out sos he mite git a chants to grow his tail back n quit a'gittin beat up so much, but ye caint hardly catch them fish, speshly one lack stubby that lacked to hide so much.

innywho, thar cum a day whar i had to move, so that meant takin the tank apart n givin away mos of the fish. corse, i always keep them catfish, speshly felix since hes so old (we dun had fritz fer near five year) n i deecided i wood keep stubby also. ye kin take yer other fish to most inny fish store n give em away only they wont pay ye nuthin on a counta tiz a favor fer em to take em offn yer hands.

i give stubby to my son, witch he kep fish in them days. he put im in a tank all by his ownself n purty soon, he had dun growd his tail back. twernt lack he wood cum out much, but he gut his tail back. twuz a nice thang to see. he gut biggern n twuz rite nice.

purty soon my son deecided to git sum tiny lil new cichlids fer the tank n funny thang is, even tho stubby wuz three times the size of em, purty soon one of them new lil fish wuz the big fish n gut to whar he had dun et stubbys tail back down to a stubb. sad thang is, ye caint change the persunalty of a fish!

as i dun writ, the big fish kin be peacekeepin types or warlike types. we had one we give the name of 'pol pot,' on a counta he killt minny of his brother fish. he wuz born in the tank n gut to be big fish by havin a fite to the death with his own daddy. he wuz a awful fish n twuz sad to watch how he terrized the rest of the tank, bothern mos ever fish ceptn his own mama.

then one evenin, he wuz a'gittin too rowdy even fer her. she chased im a bit, witch twuz a nuff to git our tenchun, so we watched fer a while. after he had chased near ever fish but his mama down into thar hidey holes (they all gut em a place to hide), his mama turnt on im suddenly n killt im in a sangle strike. twuz amazin. she hit im so hard, he turnt over backerds n drifted down to the bottom of the tank. he dint git uprite agin n wuz ded by nex mornin.

even befor pol pot gut his chants to be big fish in the tank, thay wuz a nuthern that wuz batterd so bad we named im 'bedraggled.' bedraggled refused to be banished n paid fer his refusal with his bidy, a'gittin so beat up to whar his eyes wuz clouded over, witch generly that means thar near ded. but bedraggled refused to die n thang wuz, he survived four or five differnt big fish. sadly, whenever we moved over to new jersey, he dint make it, tho we tride.

ye could larn ye sum lessons frum how them fish wurks.
  1. ever fish is different
  2. the big fish in the tank dont last as long as the lil uns
  3. ifn a fish lets itself git banishd, twill die
  4. ifn a fish kin take a punch, twill outlast lodes of them big fish
  5. big fish cums in two forms, peaceful n warlike.
  6. a warlike big fish has to spend mos of his time chasin all them other fish around to proov how hes the biggest
  7. a peaceful big fish lives a verr long time n only chases tuther fish ifn a fite brakes out twixt em
  8. ye caint save a fish that wont save itself
seems to me thays at lease one lessun fer them dimcrats in all of that, ifn ye bleev inny of them lessuns kin apply to humans, witch is
  1. ye caint let yerself be banished to no canada
  2. ye gut to take a punch
  3. ye gut to suck it up on a counta how them big fish dont las as long as lil uns
  4. ifn ye caint save yerself, caint nobidy else save ye
corse, humans aint fish, so mayhap nun of this signifies innythang.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

nite life of buddy don: drankin at st. andrews with my irish friend

last nite after wurk me n my irish friend walked over to st. andrews on 44th street twixt broadway n sixth avenue sos we could have us a lil sangle malt n conversayshun.

we had jes cum thru a hard day on the corpor-rut battlefield, gittin blamed fer thangs we hadnt dun n fitin off them charges, sprizin folks with sum brakethrus we hadnt yet announced, n jes generly havin a good but hard time doin our jobs. we wuz verr tired by the end of our 11 hour day, so it seemed lack st. andrews wuz jes the thang. tiz a lot closern keens, fer one thang, n my irish friend hadnt never been thar.

me n miz bd had furst been to st. andrews fer the whisky dinner they had the nite before whisky fest. tiz a rite nice place with all the folk a'wearin tartans, kilts or skirts accordin to thar sex, n ever one of em speakin a purrfeck scotish brogue. they gut em 195 different sangle malts on thar menu n ye kin buy yer drams or yer tasters, witch yer tasters is bout half the size of yer drams n half the cost.

bout as quick as we gut seated, along cum our waitress sharon frum glasgow to git our order. fastern ye could say 'lickedy-split,' we had it all: our saucy red-hedded waitress lettin my irish frien have it fer makin a mess of our table witch we bofus made, only he gut the blame fer bein irish n i dint on a counta add mittin to (braggin bout?) havin scottish ancestors; a lil four cheese thin-crust pizza; n a strang of them tasters to share, filled with malts lack a 25 year old talisker, 16 year old lagavulin, 30 year old glenfiddich, 15 year springbank, 17 year glen scotia, 17 year glenfarclas, sum 1991 caol ila, that kind thang.

twuz a verr nice way to end a hard day battlin in them corpor-rut wars. twuz all over by 7:15 n i wuz home porin miz bd her furst scotch by 7:45.

life dont git much bettern that.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

pinions of buddy don: city of rubble to win harts n minds?

sumtimes whenever i watch whuts a'goin on over in iraq, it puts me in mind of vietnam, lack it duz mos everbidy who wuz alive fer that lil add ventchur. in that conflick, witch as ye mite member wuz to keep all them communist dominoes frum droppin cuntry by cuntry till we wuz forced to be communists our ownself, we wuz fitin folks who wuz willin to put bombs in baby carridges, as grisly a violayshun of life as ye kin magine. wurser than that, it wurked to whar we retaliated till thay wuz atrocities on bof sides, mos famus one bein that my lai massacre. thang is, ye caint have a war without atrocities. deespite whut the reveredn pat robertson claims mr bush sed, ye caint have no war without casualties neethur. thems plane facks n theys part of the reason sum folks are agin all war.

back in them vietnam days, our side wuz countin the dead on thar side, sumthin i reckun we larnt not to do no more. ye wood git them body counts ever evenin on the news. day after day, ye wood be greeted with them numbers: 13 u.s. dead on our side, 40 south vietnam dead on our side, 3,000 communist dead on tharn, that kinda thang, nite after nite after nite. corse, thay wuz that famus statement on the news that they made almos ever fridy evenin: 'American casualties were described as light.' i member thankin twuz a miracull how them communists could keep cummin up with new fiters when we wuz a'killin em off in such numbers. dint matter how minny wuz reported killt of a evenin, thay wuz always plenty more to be killt the nex day.

as ye mite magine, the frustrayshun with that war wuz grate. how kin ye win a war ifn killin the enemy dont make em back down? how kin ye win a war ifn ever time ye kill one of tharn, several otherns gits inspired to join up with thar side? it cum to the point whar folks wuz saying thangs lack, 'We had to destroy the village to save it' n one of my favert lines of all time, lease fer showin how absurd war kin be, 'We have to kill those people; they have no respect for human life.'

lack innybidy mite, i keep prayin that we kin figger a way that this war kin be differnt, but i aint too optimistick about it, even ifn thats whut yer spozed to be. my reason has to do with whut we jes witnessd in falluja n the res of the cuntry:
  1. we figger out whar the insurgents has thar hedquarters, in falluja
  2. we announce to the world how we're a'goin in to clean em out
  3. since they dont whar uniforms or fite accordin to the rules of law (reminds me of the overmountain men a'fitin the english all dressed in thar red n marchin in strate rows at the battle of kings moutain in our own revolushuairy war), taint no big trick fer em to disappear befor we even git thar
  4. they seem to bleev thar cause is wurth dyin fer, so minny of them that stays to fite wonts to fite to the death
  5. we destroy falluja n deeclare we have it 100% under our cuntrol of the rubble thats lef over
  6. but sumhow, thays plenty more insurgents reddy to attack us in uther places.
  7. we make plans to shift forces n git reddy to doot all agin
in such a war, ye kin take all the territory ye wont. ye kin knock down bildins n mosques n hospitulls. ye kin kill ten of them fer ever one of ourn they kills. ye kin go whar ye wont n kill as minny as ye gut the stumach to kill. but ifn ye caint change the harts n minds of the folks yer trine to give demockrussy, the furst time ye let em vote, ifn tiz a fair vote, thar a'gone vote ye out.

i gut on this train of thought this mornin as i wuz readin the frunt page articull in the new york times name of Rebels Attack in Central Iraq and the North. it splains how the fitin has spread out in sevrul direckshuns, addin mosul, baquba, kirkuk, n suwaira to the lis of trouble spots whar insurgents take over po-leece stayshuns n execute sum of the iraqi po-leece. all that is real scary stuff.

thays also that articull bout the marine who shot dead the wounded man who wuz lef behind by a earlier group of marines that had dun cum thru. i caint judge the man fer whut he dun: thats fer god to do. but i half to add mitt i could see myself gittin so riled n frustrated by the situwayshun that i mite do the same kinda thang. that dont make it rite by no stretch, but tiz true.

but all them thangs dont scare me much. whut scares me is sumthin that cum at the verr end of the new york times articull bout the insurgentsy spreddin. tiz a note bout sum children playin, after thangs had dun calmed down in mosul. is we winnin harts n minds? here's the quote:
Other clashes erupted around Mosul. A bomb exploded beneath a police car at the Zahoor police station, one of the stations looted and burned by rebels on Thursday.

But the violence had calmed since then, and children could be seen playing in some parks.

At one playground, Amin Muhammad, 10, and his friends raced around with plastic guns. "We divide ourselves into two teams,'' he said, "the mujahedeen versus the American forces.''

And in their battles, he said, the mujahedeen always win.
when them kids gits to playin cops n robbers or cowboys n injuns, ye kin tell whos winnin thar harts n minds by witch side they take.

Monday, November 15, 2004

mizry of buddy don: sundy migraine

fergive me fer runnin on n on bout migraines, but ifn ye ever had one, ye wood understand how awful tiz to have sumthin take over cumpletely to whar ye caint even watch tv or read or lie in bed without havin to git up n vomit. yesterdy mornin, i had sum symptums, but i dint wonta add mitt twuz a'happenin, so i put off takin my medicin fer a lil while. befor i knew it, i had to upchuck with a vengunts, n after that, twuznt possibull to stop it. i tuck the zomig that wurks so well ifn ye catch the migraine befor ye git to spittin up. but it dont wurk at all after ye dun started. i even tuck a secunt one after i had been in it fer two hours. but it dint wurk, n frum 5 in the mornin till 9 pm, i couldnt stop, couldnt keep nuthin down, couldnt do nuthin but suffer n vomit till my throat wuz (n still is) raw n achin frum all the acid. miz bd tride everthang she knows, but nuthin wurked.

finely, thankin i wood half to call in this mornin, witch ye caint magine how much i wood hate that, i figgerd i wood take a shower sos i could git the stank offn me. twuz lack flickin a switch. i went in the shower as sick as ever, but cum out with the problem gone. i could eat (few grains of rice) n drank water n even a lil tea. kin a shower be a switch in the rite direckshun? i never herd of it a'doon that befor, but after vomittin fer about 16 hours, mayhap the migraine had dun run its corse.

tiz a bad bizness whenever ye thank the bes thang bout that migraine is how it cum on a sundy so i woodnt miss no wurk. but tiz bad a nuff to suffer the pure mizry without addin in the feelin of guilt n deepreshun ye git when ye stay home sick.

Friday, November 12, 2004

pinions of buddy don: soshul securty

tuther day i gut that lil notice they send out folks thats been puttin money into the soshul securty system. mosly twuz splainayshuns bout how much i paid ever year since i started earnin wages in 1970, but the part that gut me a'wunderin agin wuz this lil comment writ into the form:
*Your estimated benefits are based on current law. Congress has made changes to the law in the past and can do so at any time. The law governing the benefit amounts may change because, by 2042, the payroll taxes collected will be enough to pay only about 73 percent of scheduled benefits.
twuz a reeminder bout that lockbox fuss n fite mr bush had with mr gore in the las eleckshun. mr gore kep astin mr bush wood he put the soshul securty surplus in a lockbox to make shore it dint git spent on other thangs. mr bush woodnt commit toot n i reckon we all know why now. thang is, soshul securty taxes is still runnin a surplus rite now. problem is, them borry n spend publicans in cuntrol spend that money n more jes as quick as they kin to fund thar deficit spendin, mosly sos the incum tax rate on incum over $200,000 in a year could be lowerd.

whut i caint git is ifn them publicans bleeve so much in puttin the soshul securty money at risk by lettin folks invest it in the stock market, why couldnt they keep the surplus soshul securty funds sepert frum the rest of the gummint revenues n start investin it in bulk in a good mix of equities n bonds n mutchul funds? seems lack we wood be awash in money to pay fer folkses retirement. in sted, they dun been spendin it faster than it cums in.

whut bugs me the most bout that is how mr greenspan hepped git the publicans in 1987 to raze the mos regressiv tax we gut, the payroll tax, spozedly sos thard be a nuff of a surplus to cover the projeckted shortfall that wood cum whenever us baby boomers gut to retire (we wont git whut we wuz promissd, witch thats the only promiss we kin be shore bout). twuz a trick to raze taxes on everbidy, witch that wurks out to be a grater percentage of yer incum the less incum ye gut. after ye pay the maximum, ye dont pay no more, witch that means ye dont pay the same percent that other folks has gut to pay.

as luck wood have it, them publicans gut em a nuther plan to fix the problem, witch thats to borry n spend even faster sos folks kin put individual retirement accounts together at a cost of only a cuple trillions of dollars. thisn beats the heck out of investin the surplus in bulk in sted of spendin it on tax cuts n then lettin each individual investor add to the cost of the program by havin to pay a broker to handle thar investments.

i live in a verr blue state witch ye caint hardly find nobidy that wood add mitt to votin fer mr bush. i wurk in a verr red industry, wall street fine ants, n our firm wuz amung the leaders in givin money to the bush camp pain. but even so, thay aint hardly nobidy that add mitts to votin fer bush. folks sez thangs lack this in sted:
Look at the bright side. Our side lost, but it means more money in our pockets. Can you imagine the profits we'll get from all the private investment accounts? We'll have bonuses we can just barely imagine now. And they'll barely be taxed!
i have herd this verr argument made overn over agin, sumtimes by the richest bankers ye kin magine, folks that kin sell over $10 million in stock n hardly thank tiz much of a trans ackshun. they add mitt they dont need more money, that they caint even spend all they dun gut. but as one feller splained it to me one time, money jes turns into a score fer such folks whar the one that dies with the most wins.

i caint hep but wunder how they celebrate the victry.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

pinions of buddy don: aint we fitin fer harts n minds?

i writ on the topick of how ye caint win harts n minds with bullets a long time ago. i wisht i could rite bout how rong i wuz then, but seems lack events is proovin otherwise. we kin invade n deestroy n take fallujah n aint nuthing kin stop us. we kin win the war agin bildins n such. but whenever we do, tiz givin the enemy all they need in thar fite to take the harts n minds that matter, witch minny of ems caught in the crossfire n minny of ems part of a cultchur that bleeves tis yer duty to kill the one that killed one of yourn.

now thays pitchers of our marines attackin mosques n i dont know whut else ye could do ifn ye wonta win agin folks thats holed up in mosques, but that dont change nuthin bout the signal sent by video of our troops attackin mosques thats bein shown on arab tv.

ye also gut to cunsidder how the idee of sankchewairy is differnt thar than here. whenever ye violate the sanctity of sankchewairy, ye violate the laws of god. lease thats how minny folks sees thangs over thar. tiz a ancient tradishun that goes back to the times of the bible.

minny a bible skolar argues that whenever lot offerd his daughters to them folks that wonted to "know" them angels he had tuck in, he wuz standin up fer that ancient middle east bleef in the sacred duty to perteck them ye give sankchewairy. ifn ye read frum genesis 10 through to the time lots daughters had sex with thar father, ye kin see that sankchewairy wuz a big part of the pitcher.

corse, thays plenty of modern day preechurs that claims to know better: whut lot wuz spozedly trine to do wuz to perteck his guest frum a homosexshul encounter, witch lot figgerd twuz ok to send out his virgin daughters but not his guests.

thats one passage of the bible i find a lil hard to figger out. aint thar no moral value agin sendin out yer own virgin daughters to be raped by a gang? or aint thar nun agin gittin yer daddy drunk? or wuz the hole story sos we wood have us a bible passage showin how much god hates homosexshul folks? in case ye missed thatn, heres the chaptur that tells most of it, tho ye orta read the hole book of genesis -- or fer that matter, the hole bible!
Genesis 19
1 And there came two angels to Sodom at even; and Lot sat in the gate of Sodom: and Lot seeing them rose up to meet them; and he bowed himself with his face toward the ground;
2 And he said, Behold now, my lords, turn in, I pray you, into your servant's house, and tarry all night, and wash your feet, and ye shall rise up early, and go on your ways. And they said, Nay; but we will abide in the street all night.
3 And he pressed upon them greatly; and they turned in unto him, and entered into his house; and he made them a feast, and did bake unleavened bread, and they did eat.
4 But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round, both old and young, all the people from every quarter:
5 And they called unto Lot, and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? bring them out unto us, that we may know them.
6 And Lot went out at the door unto them, and shut the door after him,
7 And said, I pray you, brethren, do not so wickedly.
8 Behold now, I have two daughters which have not known man; let me, I pray you, bring them out unto you, and do ye to them as is good in your eyes: only unto these men do nothing; for therefore came they under the shadow of my roof.
9 And they said, Stand back. And they said again, This one fellow came in to sojourn, and he will needs be a judge: now will we deal worse with thee, than with them. And they pressed sore upon the man, even Lot, and came near to break the door.
10 But the men put forth their hand, and pulled Lot into the house to them, and shut to the door.
11 And they smote the men that were at the door of the house with blindness, both small and great: so that they wearied themselves to find the door.
12 And the men said unto Lot, Hast thou here any besides? son in law, and thy sons, and thy daughters, and whatsoever thou hast in the city, bring them out of this place:
13 For we will destroy this place, because the cry of them is waxen great before the face of the LORD; and the LORD hath sent us to destroy it.
14 And Lot went out, and spake unto his sons in law, which married his daughters, and said, Up, get you out of this place; for the LORD will destroy this city. But he seemed as one that mocked unto his sons in law.
15 And when the morning arose, then the angels hastened Lot, saying, Arise, take thy wife, and thy two daughters, which are here; lest thou be consumed in the iniquity of the city.
16 And while he lingered, the men laid hold upon his hand, and upon the hand of his wife, and upon the hand of his two daughters; the LORD being merciful unto him: and they brought him forth, and set him without the city.
17 And it came to pass, when they had brought them forth abroad, that he said, Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed.
18 And Lot said unto them, Oh, not so, my LORD:
19 Behold now, thy servant hath found grace in thy sight, and thou hast magnified thy mercy, which thou hast shewed unto me in saving my life; and I cannot escape to the mountain, lest some evil take me, and I die:
20 Behold now, this city is near to flee unto, and it is a little one: Oh, let me escape thither, (is it not a little one?) and my soul shall live.
21 And he said unto him, See, I have accepted thee concerning this thing also, that I will not overthrow this city, for the which thou hast spoken.
22 Haste thee, escape thither; for I cannot do anything till thou be come thither. Therefore the name of the city was called Zoar.
23 The sun was risen upon the earth when Lot entered into Zoar.
24 Then the LORD rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven;
25 And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground.
26 But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.
27 And Abraham gat up early in the morning to the place where he stood before the LORD:
28 And he looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and, lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.
29 And it came to pass, when God destroyed the cities of the plain, that God remembered Abraham, and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow, when he overthrew the cities in the which Lot dwelt.
30 And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters.
31 And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth:
32 Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
33 And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
34 And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father.
35 And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose.
36 Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.
37 And the first born bare a son, and called his name Moab: the same is the father of the Moabites unto this day.
38 And the younger, she also bare a son, and called his name Benammi: the same is the father of the children of Ammon unto this day.
bein nuthin moren a wanderin hillbilly, i caint hep but wunder why twuz ok to have incest with yer father. but lease twuz heterosexshul sex!

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

passhuns of buddy don: continuin search fer the purrfeck sangle malt scotch

me n miz bd has been takin add vantage of sum of the attrackshuns of livin up here in such a big city, witch one of the mane ones is how ye kin find mos ever innerest ye mite wonta foller rite up in here. fer instunts, we dun fell in luv with sangle malt scotches n wuz we ever in the rite place fer it. fer one thang, riteover thar in man hattan, they gut em one of the best retail stores fer sangle malt scotch in the worl, a place name of park avenue liquors, witch tiz on madison n 41st street. corse i dun menchuned keens chophouse a time or two. but thays lots more:ye gut a place we aint never been yet name of the ginger man, witch they lacks to brag bout thar sangle malt scotch seeleckshun but it aint much cumpard to keens or st andrews. speaking of st andrews, tiz a nuther place thats well knowd fer its sangle malt scotch colleckshun n fer the fack that all thar waiters whars kilts whenever thar a'wurkin.

cums a time lack this week, when they gut whisky fest a'goin on in new york at the marriott marquee hotel on broadway n 45th. ye mite could thank that jes lettin ye pay yer price n git into the hotel to sample as minny differnt sangle malts n uther whiskys as ye kin hold, ye mite could thank that wood be a nuff, but not fer this part of the cuntry. furst thay wuz free tastins a'goin on ever afternoon over at park avenue liquor, witch i dropped by thar to test out the 10% discount on my new malt advocate whisky society card. thay had em a feller who imports whiskys lack tobermory n bruichladdich n deanstons n ledaig. bout as quick as i gut in n tole em i wonted to git a nuther bottle of that stuff my irish friend brung over fer a tastin, witch twuz sum old malt cask speshul bottlin of sum laphroaig n bout as fine as inny we ever had, here cum that feller offerin to pore me sum of whutever. i tasted sum ledaig 20, witch ledaig 15 is one of our faverts alreddy. he lacked how much i lacked it so he broke the seal on sum ledaig 30 n let me have a taste of thatn. twuz deeliteful n twill be fer sale in january fer $400 a bottle, witch tiz a good thang he let me taste sum fer free on a counta i couldnt never spend no $400 fer a bottle of scotch n ifn i did, i couldnt never drank it.

innywho, i reckon ye gut the idee. the hole place is crazy fer havin em sum sangle malts, speshly in the week of whisky fest. me n miz bd sined up bout as quick as we larnt they wuz a'gone have it n since we joined the malt whisky advocate society, we gut vip tickets, witch that ment ye could git in a hour early. as soon as we had sprung that deal, we herd bout a whisky dinner at st. andrews fer the nite befor. twuz sponsored by gordon n mcphail, witch thays sum speshul bottlers thats been in the whisky bottlin bizness over 100 years, n the idee wuz that ye wood git yer dinner n four scotches fer $50 includin tip n tax n everthang, witch twuz so cheap (fer man hattan) on a counta it bein a promoshunul thang fer gordon n mcphail. miz bd sined us up fer thatn n long story short, we had us a whisky dinner on a sundy follerd by whisky fest on mundy n i tuck the day off yesterdy jes in case.

the whisky dinner wuz ok only twooda been much better ifn it had started on time. innywho, we had a dinner of caesar salad n salmon on crab cakes follered by a deesert of creme brulee n then tea or coffee. they had em a scotch fer each seckshun, startin with benromach tradishunul, witch gordon n mcphail bought up the benromach distillry in 1998 n started makin whisky in it agin, witch the benromach tradishunul wuz the furst they cum out with. corse that whisky couldnt be no moren five or six year old, witch twuz the yungest we had ever tasted ceptn in a blend n twuz ok but not grate. whenever they brung out the salad, they give us a drank of lochside 1991 12 year, witch ye caint git thatn no more on a counta how that distillry has dun been closed. twuz a nuther verr lite whisky, a bit more cumplex than the benromach. whenever they brung out a new whisky fer us, they had em a feller thar name of michael urquhart, director of gordon n mcphail who wood give us a lil leckchur on the taste we mite git frum the whisky n how that whisky cum to be speshul. when they brung the mane corse -- ye could git a rib-eye stake or a grilled thistle-honey piece of chicken ifn ye eat animuls that has eyelids -- thay give us a drank of mortlach 15 year, witch thatn wuz the bestn yet, furstn with inny taste of peat smoke. finely, they brung us deesert n a drank of caol ila 12 year, witch me n miz bd had dun bought us sum of the caol ila 12 bottled by the distillry, but the gordon n mcphail private colleckshun bottlin wuz whut thay served us n twuz the bestn of the nite: peaty, smokey as kin be, tastin of peppers n fruits n such.

twuznt all good on a counta how we gut thar a lil early but they wuznt reddy n we had to wait till near 8:30 befor we gut started. they wuznt too generus with the water neethur, but we made pests out of ourself n gut sum. but we dint git home till after 11:30, witch twuz a long spell past our bedtime.

on mundy we went to whisky fest. twuz nuthin less than amazin. fer one thang, they had a grate feed set up with all kinda fine cheeses n breads n salads n pastas n yew name it, so we gut sumthin on our stumachs furst thang. they also give us a lil nosin glass with the wurds whisky fest 2004 writ on em n bout as quick as we stowed our dirty dishes, we gut to samplin. one thang ye gut to know bout these here kinda events, witch they gut em a spittoon at ever table, witch ye aint spozed to spit but to pore out whuts left in yer glass after ye dun tuck a lil taste. ifn ye ever go to one of these events, ye gut to make friends with bof the spittoon n the idee of porin out really grate scotch. otherwise sumbidys a'gone half to pore ye into a cab n send ye home. as ye kin see by the list of thangs we gut to taste, we had dun made friends with that thar spittoon thang frum the verr beginnin. also, thay had em lots of dranks that wuznt sangle malt scotches, manely amurkin or irish whiskys n sum rum n tequila, witch dint me nor miz bd show no innerst in em. heres the list:
  • Inverleven 1979
  • Michter's 10 year old single barrel bourbon
  • Michter's US #1 American whiskey
  • Michters US #1 single barrel straight rye (thisn wuz one of the bes sprizes of the nite, not only fer the bourbon, but speshly fer this rye that wuz deelishus with notes of butterscotch rum)
  • Old Potrero Single Malt
  • Bruichladdich Full Strength 1989
  • Bruichladdich 3D 9a blend of three differnt decades of Bruichladdich, witch tiz verr peaty n wurth trine once tiz availabull here in amurka)
  • Caol Ila 18 (thisn wuz pored fer us by a feller frum the Drumchork Lodge Hotel, witch he wuz bout as nice as folks gits n invited us to cum stay at his hotel n make us sum scotch our ownself n we mite jes doot)
  • Highland Park 1980
  • Glenfarclas 21 year
  • Ardebeg 30 (thisn wuz a speshul charity tastin ye had to pay exter fer with the money goin to the red cross)
  • Isle of Jura (a nuther speshul charity tastin, witch we dun fergot the particlars bout this scotch only twuz verr old n eggspensive)
  • Glengoyne 17 year
  • Glengoyne 12 year cask strength
  • Johnnie Walker Green Label (we larnt that Johnnie Walker has to call thisn Green Label now on a counta how they caint sell thar old green labeld pure malt as a 'pure malt' no more, witch we had us a bottle that hadnt been opened yet n the feller thar tole us we shouldnt never open it but should save it fer a few years n then sell it fer the price of a case. fack is, i caint find a pitcher of the new bottle on the internets rite now, but when me n miz bd went to try to buy us a nuther of the ole style bottles on speckulayshun, we found they dint have nuthin but the new one down to the nearest likker store)
  • Bruichladdich 14 year cask strength
  • Tullamore Dew 12 year
  • Compass Box Peat Monster (ifn ye lack peat, thisn could be the one fer ye, tho taint a true sangle malt)
  • Connemara Single Malt Irish
  • Connemara Cask Strength
  • Connemara Peated Single Malt Irish Whisky
thays more scotch to be tasted fer free over to park avenue liquors, but we had us a nuff fer a while. we larnt a lot at bof events n had us a real good time. we also met sum other folks thats been on the search fer the purrfeck sangle malt scotch lots longer than we been. we sat next to em at st andrews n then run into em at whicky fest, witch they live up in seattle but cum to new york jes fer the event. they been searchin fer the purrfeck sangle malt fer nigh onto 20 years. lack us, they gut into the habit of collecktin innythang speshul that they really lacks, witch tiz a tradishun amung lots of sangle malt scotch drankers to buy two bottles, one to drank, tuthern to save. we ast em did they have much of a colleckshun n they tole us how they had dun bilt em a speshul room in thar house to hold it all. how minny unopened bottles did they have? over 1,000!

as ye kin see, this stuff could git out of hand!

Monday, November 08, 2004

pinions of buddy don: who gits to pay them bills?

i saw a thang on the internets tuther day whar they ranked them blue states vs them redns on iq, witch ye mite coulda seen it yer ownself. folks has dun started attackin it, a'claimin it caint be so, but thays a passel of folks with thar own proofs fer why tiz so.

i caint solve thatn direckly, but ye gut to wunder which of them states is smarter, reds or blues. why? heres a list of how much they git back in fedrul expenditchurs fer each dollar of fedrul tax they pay. the list below is organized this away -- State (Exp/$1 for FY2002). ye kin read more bout it here. as ye kin see, them red states is makin out lack bandits, a'robbin them blue states of tax revenue lack nobidys bizness:
  1. North Dakota ($2.03)
  2. New Mexico ($1.89)
  3. Mississippi ($1.84)
  4. Alaska ($1.82)
  5. West Virginia ($1.74)
  6. Montana ($1.64)
  7. Alabama ($1.61)
  8. South Dakota ($1.59)
  9. Arkansas ($1.53)
  10. Hawaii ($1.52)
  11. Oklahoma ($1.47)
  12. Virginia ($1.47)
  13. Kentucky ($1.46)
  14. Lousiana ($1.44)
  15. Idaho ($1.34)
  16. Missouri ($1.32)
  17. South Carolina ($1.32)
  18. Maine ($1.31)
  19. Tennessee ($1.24)
  20. Iowa ($1.22)
  21. Arizona ($1.20)
  22. Maryland ($1.20)
  23. Nebraska ($1.19)
  24. Kansas ($1.14)
  25. Utah ($1.14)
  26. Vermont ($1.12)
  27. Pennsylvania ($1.08)
  28. North Carolina ($1.07)
  29. Rhode Island ($1.06)
  30. Wyoming ($1.05)
  31. Ohio ($1.02)
  32. Georgia ($1.01)
  33. Florida ($1.00)
  34. Oregon ($1.00)
  35. Indiana ($0.99)
  36. Texas ($0.92)
  37. Washington ($0.91)
  38. Michigan ($0.90)
  39. Delaware ($0.85)
  40. Wisconsin ($0.84)
  41. California ($0.81)
  42. New York ($0.81)
  43. Colorado ($0.79)
  44. Massachusetts ($0.79)
  45. Illinois ($0.77)
  46. Minnesota ($0.77)
  47. Nevada ($0.73)
  48. New Hampshire ($0.68)
  49. Connecticut ($0.64)
  50. New Jersey ($0.62)
member that ole communism thang bout 'from each according to his ability, to each according to his need'? looks lack we gut that plan a'goin fer our own states rite now! blues gut the ability to pay, reds gut the need fer the money. n the red states is mad bout taxes? whut more do they wont?

Thursday, November 04, 2004

pinions of buddy don: the reality strikes back

aint no nevermind how i wonted thangs to turn out in that eleckshun now that tiz over n even ifn i dont lack the result, i lack thangs bein over. congratulayshuns to mr bush on finely winnin an eleckshun to presdint. ye mite thank the worl wood catch on to how the reality dont matter now on a counta ye kin win so long as ye deny it. sez a lot about how much faith folks has gut in this cuntry.

so whuts a'gone on with this reality thang? aint the reality herd the wurd bout who won n how? reason i ast is how it seems lack the reality is a'strikin back, ignorin the facks of mr bushs victry cumpletely.

take yer global warmin. dun been deefeated at the ballot box, rite? but here it cums agin, this time attackin the home of santa claus! talk about the reality pickin a fite with whut folks bleeves! in case ye missed this importunt news, heres a bit of that articull, witch tiz a'callin itself 'Global Warming Has Arrived: Arctic Study':
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov 1 (OneWorld) – With only eight weeks left before the elves finish their work and Santa Claus mounts his sleigh, an eight-nation study on global warming co-sponsored by the United States has concluded that the North Pole is melting beneath St. Nick.

The 144-page report, which is due to be officially released a week after Tuesday’s elections, says the accelerated warming of the globe – which it blames mostly on the emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases produced by the industrial age – is transforming the Arctic region dramatically.

The Arctic “is now experienc[ing] some of the most rapid and severe climate change on Earth,” according to the report, which was obtained by the New York Times and the Washington Post this weekend, apparently from European sources that wanted to publicize its findings before Tuesday.

The European Union (news - web sites) (EU), some of whose member states co-sponsored the study, strongly supports the Kyoto Protocol (news - web sites) to reduce greenhouse emissions, while President George W. Bush (news - web sites) has rejected the accord. His Democratic challenger, Sen. John Kerry (news - web sites), has called for the U.S. to rejoin negotiations on the treaty’s terms.

“Over the next 100 years, climate change is expected to accelerate, contributing to major physical, ecological, social and economic changes, many of which have already begun,” the report stated, adding that greenhouse gas emissions have clearly become “the dominant factor” in the Arctic’s changing climate.
i kindly figgerd mayhap that thar global warmin reality, bein located too far away to git the news, mite coulda missd how the eleckshun changes everthang n made reality moot, but then ye git stories lack thisn in the l.a. times bout how sum of our own soljers is still on the side of the reality. here a bit of the articull, witch thar a'callin it Soldiers Describe Looting of Explosives:
Iraqis piled high-grade material from a key site into trucks in the weeks after Baghdad fell, four U.S. reservists and guardsmen say.
By Mark Mazzetti
Times Staff Writer
November 4, 2004

WASHINGTON — In the weeks after the fall of Baghdad, Iraqi looters loaded powerful explosives into pickup trucks and drove the material away from the Al Qaqaa ammunition site, according to a group of U.S. Army reservists and National Guardsmen who said they witnessed the looting.

The soldiers said about a dozen U.S. troops guarding the sprawling facility could not prevent the theft because they were outnumbered by looters. Soldiers with one unit — the 317th Support Center based in Wiesbaden, Germany — said they sent a message to commanders in Baghdad requesting help to secure the site but received no reply.

The witnesses' accounts of the looting, the first provided by U.S. soldiers, support claims that the American military failed to safeguard the munitions. Last month, the International Atomic Energy Agency — the U.N. nuclear watchdog — and the interim Iraqi government reported that about 380 tons of high-grade explosives had been taken from the Al Qaqaa facility after the fall of Baghdad on April 9, 2003. The explosives are powerful enough to detonate a nuclear weapon.

During the last week, when revelations of the missing explosives became an issue in the presidential campaign, the Bush administration suggested that the munitions could have been carted off by Saddam Hussein's forces before the war began. Pentagon officials later said that U.S. troops systematically destroyed hundreds of tons of explosives at Al Qaqaa after Baghdad fell.

Asked about the soldiers' accounts, Pentagon spokeswoman Rose-Ann Lynch said Wednesday, "We take the report of missing munitions very seriously. And we are looking into the facts and circumstances of this incident."
The soldiers, who belong to two different units, described how Iraqis plundered explosives from unsecured bunkers before driving off in Toyota trucks.

The U.S. troops said there was little they could do to prevent looting of the ammunition site, 30 miles south of Baghdad.

"We were running from one side of the compound to the other side, trying to kick people out," said one senior noncommissioned officer who was at the site in late April 2003.

"On our last day there, there were at least 100 vehicles waiting at the site for us to leave" so looters could come in and take munitions.

"It was complete chaos. It was looting like L.A. during the Rodney King riots," another officer said.
He and other soldiers who spoke to The Times asked not to be named, saying they feared retaliation from the Pentagon.
thang is, ye kin see these here soljers know thar makin a miss take by joinin the reality agin the faithful, witch thats why they knowd bettern to give out thar names.

ye kin also see how bad thangs are a'gittin fer the reality on a counta how in this articull ye kin read bout the reality a'plannin to strike back! tiz called More Concerns About Weapons, Expertise Available to Iraqi Insurgents n here's the kinda thangs the reality is plannin agin the faithful:
WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov 2 (OneWorld) – More evidence of a major failure by the Bush administration to adequately prepare for the possibility of insurgency in post-war Iraq (news - web sites) has surfaced amid claims by some rebels that they have acquired chemical weapons and are preparing to use them against U.S. forces in the besieged Sunni stronghold of Falluja.

The claims, which come on the heels of the worst one-day losses for U.S. soldiers in more than six months, suggested that chemical-weapons specialists are lending their expertise to the guerrillas, a development that is causing growing anxiety in Washington.

Such a possibility was noted in the Central Intelligence Agency (news - web sites)’s (CIA (news - web sites)) Duelfer Report last month which detailed in an annex that a group of insurgents, called the “Al-Abud Network,” had worked with a civilian Iraqi chemist to build chemical weapons for use against Coalition forces.

The report, which was noted by Michael Roston at Columbia University in a paper published by Foreign Policy in Focus (FPIF) last week said U.S.-led troops had nipped the plot in the bud but that al-Abud “was not the only group planning or attempting to produce CBW (chemical or biological weapons) agents …”

“(A)vailability of chemicals and materials dispersed throughout the country, and intellectual capital from the former WMD (weapons of mass destruction) programs increases (sic) the future threat to Coalition forces,” according to the Annex.

That possibility looms large as U.S. Marines prepare a major assault on Falluja where up to 3,000 insurgents are believed to be holed up. It was just outside the city that nine Marines were reportedly killed Saturday when a suicide bomber drove his truck into their convoy.

Since last week’s revelation that some 380 tons of high explosives – just a few pounds of which can blow up an airplane -- that had been sealed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) at the former nuclear site of Al Qaqaa south of Baghdad, concern has grown over the likelihood that that stockpile was only a small fraction of as much as 250,000 tons of munitions that remain unaccounted for.
tiz a shame that the reality caint use this moment after the eleckshun to take a lil brake n let us all celebrate the victry of the faithful over it in peace!

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

pinions of buddy don: wurst of all possibull outcums

tiz awful that thangs aint quite over. but twill be soon a nuff.

now that them publicans have a better majorty in congress (delays redistricktin wuz hepful in that) n thar reeleckted president (i know i could be rong on thatn), twill be innerestin to see whut they do. aint nuthin kin stop em now. they kin fix everthang n caint use that ole eggscuze bout them dimcrats blockin em. now they kin make everthang jes rite. aint that sumthin?

i half to add mitt, tiz a sad day n it hurts as bad as innythang. corse, taint fer me to cuncede n thars still a lil tiny chants fer ohio to give kerry the victry, but . . . face facks: tiz over.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

pinions of buddy don: votin problems alreddy?

me n miz bd wuz in line to vote at 5:45 on a counta how them polls wuz spozed to open at 6 am sharp. dint wurk out thataway on a counta how thar a'usin them new-fangled eelecktronick votin machines n the one we wuz spozed to use wuznt a'wurkin. after we had waited over a hour, we finely gut to vote. miz bd wuz voter number 9 n i gut 10. the line wuz a cuple blocks long by the time they gut that machine a'wurkin. heres hopin it wurks all day long!

pinions of buddy don: eleckshun day

i hope ye vote fer my guy, he aint no junior joker
but ifn ye dont lack him, then vote fer mediocre

cause even ifn ye dont choose the man i know is best
please go vote n do yer duty: the corts'll do the rest

Monday, November 01, 2004

pinions of buddy don: who wuz osama trine to reach?

by now everbidy has herd bout how osama bin laden is alive n well n still broadcastin at folks. he had a few thangs to say, witch ye mite could thank he wuz a trine to have a influents on the u.s. election, but thays a nuther audients thats probly more importunt to im, witch thats all the muslims who are in thar third week of ramadan. that means thar cunsidderin whut it means to be muslim n how they kin bes serve the community of muslims worlwide.

one thang folks has gut to start unnerstandin is how this is a battle fer harts n minds, not one state trine to git a nuthern to surrender. the enemy is willin to use a tacktick known as terrorism. ifn thays folks willin to use it, ye caint stop em on a counta ye caint eethur kill em all or lock everbidy up. ifn ye read osamas statement, ye mite notice how he frames his hole reasonin fer attackin us on the amurkin support fer the israeli incurshun into lebanon back in 1982. seems to me whut he's a doon is preachin to his base, not to us. i bleeve hes makin the case to other muslims that he has had the courage to stand up to the worls mightiest military power. ifn other muslims hear his message n take it to hart, then we jes lost a big battle on a counta thays that minny more of em wllin to join in the battle agin amurka. i dont thank it makes much differnts to him whuther tiz bush or kerry that wins, tho he has to have grate recruitin at the moment thanks to bush's deecishun to invade iraq in sted of keepin after him.

whut i caint hep but wunder is whut we're a'doon to win harts n minds fer our side. is it killin as minny of 100,000 iraqis that woodnt have died ifn we hadnt invaded? is it invadin a muslim cuntry, guardin thar oil infrastruckchur but not pertectin sum of the weppons n eggsplosiv dumps? i caint figger how we're a'doon it atall, assumin we are a'doon it.