At 4:50 (i assume 3:50 our time), when the President lands, Chief Justice Rehnquist will, supposedly, hand in his walking papers.

The interesting thing is that this is getting some conservatives wound up, because they think it will make it harder to "pack the courts." I don't know, seems to me President Bush hasn't exactly been the great compromiser. I expect great things from these nominees in the way on constructionists. Whether or not they are willing to overturn Roe, well, that isn't high on my list right now of "litmus tests."

A source close to the White House tells me that the White House is operating under the assumption, based on presumed knowledge of Novak's source, that this will, in fact, happen. Yes, keep in mind that I am not being told that the White House is confirming this, but that the White House has a good idea it should trust Novak's source.

Interestingly, it seems the same sources are saying Justice Stevens will also retire at the end of this year. If Rehnquist indeed hangs up the robes this afternoon, this source may be on to something.

Third party sources are now telling me that the John Paul Stevens rumor is true and that the White House is now planning for a third vacancy, but not until the end of the year. Third party sources, who I treat as credible, say that Stevens has begun taking actions in his personal life to make arrangements for personal affairs. It is presumed that Stevens is taking steps to retire.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

World Series of Poker Started Today

More specifically, the "main event," the $10,000 no-limit hold 'em tourney started today. It's gonna go something like a week, with 5661 entrants/

If anyone cares, this guy is liveblogging it. Gotta be bustin his hump.

And it seems this guy is taking the ballcap and shades thing a touch far.

"Unfortunately, the Europeans' devastating urge to do good can no longer be countered with reason."

A rising star in the world of economics (at least in my eyes after this interview) James Shikwati explains why aid to Africa is, literally, killing Africa. Read the interview, it is both incredibly insightful (where else are you going to hear the truth, that handouts are what is killing these people, not apathy) and funny. The interviewer has no freaking idea what to say when Mr. Shikwati shoots down every notion this guy holds true.

SPIEGEL: Even in a country like Kenya, people are starving to death each year. Someone has got to help them.

Shikwati: But it has to be the Kenyans themselves who help these people. When there's a drought in a region of Kenya, our corrupt politicians reflexively cry out for more help. This call then reaches the United Nations World Food Program -- which is a massive agency of apparatchiks who are in the absurd situation of, on the one hand, being dedicated to the fight against hunger while, on the other hand, being faced with unemployment were hunger actually eliminated. It's only natural that they willingly accept the plea for more help. And it's not uncommon that they demand a little more money than the respective African government originally requested. They then forward that request to their headquarters, and before long, several thousands tons of corn are shipped to Africa ...

SPIEGEL: ... corn that predominantly comes from highly-subsidized European and American farmers ...

Shikwati: ... and at some point, this corn ends up in the harbor of Mombasa. A portion of the corn often goes directly into the hands of unsrupulous politicians who then pass it on to their own tribe to boost their next election campaign. Another portion of the shipment ends up on the black market where the corn is dumped at extremely low prices. Local farmers may as well put down their hoes right away; no one can compete with the UN's World Food Program. And because the farmers go under in the face of this pressure, Kenya would have no reserves to draw on if there actually were a famine next year. It's a simple but fatal cycle.

SPIEGEL: If the World Food Program didn't do anything, the people would starve.

Shikwati: I don't think so. In such a case, the Kenyans, for a change, would be forced to initiate trade relations with Uganda or Tanzania, and buy their food there. This type of trade is vital for Africa. It would force us to improve our own infrastructure, while making national borders -- drawn by the Europeans by the way -- more permeable. It would also force us to establish laws favoring market economy.

What comes next is the most ridiculously condescending question I have read in a loooong time. Well, since the previous, "if we didn't help the people would starve" question.

SPIEGEL: Would Africa actually be able to solve these problems on its own?

Wow. So this knucklehead thinks that Africans can't figure out how to trade. Moron.

The discussion then turns to AIDS, and Mr. Shikwati is actually able to have an intelligent discussion with a total idiot. Of course the discussion is one sided.

Shikwati: If one were to believe all the horrorifying reports, then all Kenyans should actually be dead by now. But now, tests are being carried out everywhere, and it turns out that the figures were vastly exaggerated. It's not three million Kenyans that are infected. All of the sudden, it's only about one million. Malaria is just as much of a problem, but people rarely talk about that.

SPIEGEL: And why's that?

Shikwati: AIDS is big business, maybe Africa's biggest business. There's nothing else that can generate as much aid money as shocking figures on AIDS. AIDS is a political disease here, and we should be very skeptical.

SPIEGEL: The Americans and Europeans have frozen funds previously pledged to Kenya. The country is too corrupt, they say.

Shikwati: I am afraid, though, that the money will still be transfered before long. After all, it has to go somewhere. Unfortunately, the Europeans' devastating urge to do good can no longer be countered with reason.

And that, as they say, is the money shot.

Unfortunately, the Europeans' devastating urge to do good can no longer be countered with reason.

via Will over at Vodkapundit

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

DU Post of the Day (for amusement purposes only)

Titled: The ultimate revelation is still 9/11

Gangsters in government. Media covers for them. That is the problem.

The only solution is 50 million of you out in the streets shutting it all down until they topple. People Power. Like Moscow '91, like Venezuela '02.

Oh yes, let Junior's little segment of the Bush mob be brought down by Plame or some such, but remember: on Watergate followed Reagan, just six years later, and it all continues through Bush, Clinton and Bush.

Nothing will have been won unless the whole ball of wax is exposed -

9/11 as the inside job it so obviously was, an arranged Reichstag fire event to seize the Zeitgeist and brainwash all of you into submission.

Vote fraud 2000 and 2004.

Drug-dealing, money laundering and plunder by the thousand tentacles of the Bush Family Evil Eempire.

Inexcusable war of aggression on the people of Iraq, nuclear threats to the whole world, a history of genocide in Central America...

Only if these become common knowledge and the perpetrators are actually pursued for criminal prosecution. Only then might we see an end to the real problem:

- the centralization of power in the hands of a few thousand owner-emperors, the protection of their "interests" through "national security" institutions that operate above the law and in secrecy;

The self-appointed powers who remain "in government" no matter who plays president, who pick the president and lay the ground for the next war, the next crime.

For a start, if the whole Bush crime family has not been acknowledged as the morally cross of the Corleones with the Hitlers on a global scale... if this just ends up being the scapegoating of a few figures for their personal mistakes and petty crimes (Rove? Who the fuck cares about Rove?!) we will never get out of this nightmare.

The next Bush (under whatever name) will be brought in just a few years hence.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is what we are dealing with. These people live amongst us, we probably buy coffee from them in the morning, get cab rides from them, and tip them for delivering our pizza. They are normal folks...on the surface. I have yet to meet an open DUer here in Milwaukee, but I have no doubt they exist. Of course, it could just be Michael Moore and Howard Dean having elaborate third, fourth, and fifth person conversations with each other...

Joseph Duncan's chilling, disgusting weblog

Chilling...the aformentioned beast who kidnapped the two Idaho children and brutally murdered their family has a web log. Truely disturbing stuff.

My intent is to harm society as much as I can, then die...was in prison for over 18 years, since the age of 17. As an adult all I knew was the oppression of incarceration. All those years I dreamed of getting out...And getting even. Instead, I got out and I got even, but did not get caught. So, I got even again, and again did not get caught.

What a disgusting shame. Anyone have a spare island where we can send these disgusting, unforgivable pederasts to rot and die? Not in my back yard is damn right.

Props to Jawa Report

Barbara Bush...Volunteering in Africa?

I often hear and read complaints about those "spolied" Bush daughters. A fun rallying cry for leftists nutters is "why aren't the Bush twins in Iraq?" (funny, they never mention Chelsea, after all Hillary did/does support the war). Well, it seems that Barbara Bush is doing her part, and a lot more than most of us.

It is here, say some doctors and nurses, that Barbara Bush, one of President Bush's twin daughters, has been working in near anonymity as a volunteer.

While no one disputes that she has been in Cape Town for the last six weeks, nearly everything about her stay is shrouded in mystery. Hospital officials yesterday refused to confirm her presence, and many hospital workers ducked questions about Barbara Bush's role at one of the premier health facilities in Africa for children with AIDS and other ailments.

A White House official, Peter Watkins, confirmed yesterday that her mother, Laura Bush, will visit Barbara in South Africa later this week, after the Group of Eight summit in Scotland where President Bush and other leaders of the industrialized world will consider how they can help ease poverty in Africa. The official said Laura Bush and her other daughter, Jenna, will spend five days with Barbara and then will travel to other African countries to speak about AIDS relief and education initiatives.


Convictions can carry the death penalty (Idaho Kidnapping)

Honestly, that was the only reason I wanted to read the story. I wanted to know that this sick prick would be killed. Not spending a life in jail where he can get his kicks with other sicko sex offenders, but put to death.

The intent of the crimes, the documents say, was to rape, seriously injure or commit a lewd and lascivious act on a child under 16 years old. Convictions can carry the death penalty or life in prison.

Duncan, who was raised in Tacoma, Wash., had spent more than a decade in prison for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old boy at gunpoint and was a fugitive at the time of his arrest for allegedly molesting a 6-year-old boy in Minnesota. Wayman on Tuesday ordered him held on $2 million bail on the fugitive charge.