Andrew Hamm: the Bipolar Express

Ruminations on theatre, music, and just about anything else that crosses my bipolar brain.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Style Weekly Reviews "Twelfth Night" ...sort of

It's a full-page picture with a blurb.

Here's the picture they chose:

And here's the whole review:

Girls Gonne Wilde
by Amy Biegelsen

Get this: Countess Olivia loves Cesario, who is actually Viola, who has been dressing in drag since getting washed ashore in the shipwreck that separated her from her brother Sebastian. Both siblings are played by the same actress, which leads to some girl-on-girl kissing, which, on opening night, led Delegate Bill Janis (R-Goochland) to avert his gaze and blush back at the actors from the front row. Sounds like a daytime soap setup, but Richmond Shakespeare Theatre’s production of “Twelfth Night” is better for your brain. Because there’s so much ornament and detail laced into Shakespeare’s comedy, the company moves everything out of the way of his words. With minimal props, crafty musical interludes and a bowling-lane-style stage — the audience sits on either side of the action — the cast gets plenty of room to play. The company performs “Twelfth Night” at Second Presbyterian Church at 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays (with an additional 2 p.m. show Saturdays) through March 31. Tickets are $13-$24. Call (866) 227-3849 or visit

That's it. One paragraph, a fairly awful picture, almost no analysis whatsoever, and the only name mentioned is that of an embarrassed Republican.

Once again, I'm in the strange position of complaining about an ostensibly good review. At least I think it's a good review; there really aren't any qualitative judgments in it except that we "move everything out of the way of [the] words," we "[get] plenty of room to play," and that we're "better for your brain" than a daytime soap opera. (Of course, the latter may just be because we're doing Shake-speah.)

I know that Style is going through an editorial upheaval right now, but can't that full page be used to print, I don't know, an actual review of the play? Style used to be the paper of record for the arts in this town, and I just expect better than this.

When all of the complexity and delight of freaking Twelfth Night is reduced to a single moment of girl-on-girl action that scandalized a politician in the front row, I'm pretty much ready to stop reading.

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Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Richmond's Peregrine Falcons Are Alive!

Feared dead after disappearing recently, Richmond's nesting pair of endangered peregrine falcons have set up a new nest under the Lee Bridge.


This is the fifth year the falcons have nested in Richmond. Last year, their home was a 21st-story walkway of Riverfront Plaza at 901 E. Byrd St.

The first three years, they nested on a 17th-story balcony of the nearby First National Bank Building.

No one knows why the birds decided to move to the bridge.

But "peregrine" means likely to wander, which refers to the birds' tendency to fly great distances. For them, a half-mile to a new home is nothing.

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Once Again, the Rules Don't Apply to Al Gore

Mister Gore, he of the massive carbon footprint and the private planes, once again believes himself to be above the rules. From the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works:

Gore first demanded to be granted an unprecedented 30 minute opening statement to the Senate EPW Committee for Wednesday’s (March 21) global warming hearing scheduled for 2:30 pm ET.

The GOP minority on the EPW committee agreed to the 30 minute opening statement.

But then Gore demanded a waiver of the EPW committee’s 48 hour rule that requires all witnesses before EPW to submit their testimony in advance. The GOP minority on the EPW committee then agreed to waive the 48 hour rule in favor of allowing Gore to submit his testimony 24 hours before the hearing.

But in a breaking news development on Capitol Hill -- the former Vice President has violated the new 24 hour deadline extension by failing to submit his testimony – even with the new time extension granted to Gore.

As of 8pm ET Tuesday evening, the testimony still has not been received by EPW, a clear violation of committee rules.

Apparently global warming (being of course a "moral issue" not a political one) exempts Gore from the rules and procedures of the United States Senate. If it was a Republican behaving this way, there would be a holy freaking uproar on the Senate floor. He would be accused of "corruption," "railroading," and "playing politics." But Gore gets a pass; this complete disregard for parliamentary procedures and the rules of the body Gore was once a member of are barely even being reported anywhere.

Mister Vice President, are you afraid to give your opponents an opportunity to read your statement before you make it? Or is it just that your data is shaky and you don't want your detractors to have any time to fact-check it?

This is exactly the kind of crap that kills a good cause. The more Gore makes himself the poster boy for the issue, the more Gore himself becomes the linchpin for the whole environmentalist movement. If he wants to get a message of conservation out there, he has got to be above reproach in his dissemination of the information. If Gore wants to change people's minds and not just fire up the people who already agree with him, he's got to find some new methods, because I really believe that what's he's been doing so far is turning off more people than it's turning on. There's a point at which your intentions and even your information become irrelevant if you are seen to be playing politics with it.


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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

NASA boss: Rename us 'Offices of Propaganda'

I have removed my original commentary on this article at WND about Dr. James Hansen, director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies, who said:

"Interference with communication of science to the public has been greater during the current administration than at any time in my career," ... during testimony before the House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee. "In my more than three decades in government, I have never seen anything approaching the degree to which information flow from scientists to the public has been screened and controlled as it has now."

Hansen said in his view, the problem stems from the fact that public affairs offices at the headquarters level of America's science agencies are headed by political appointees. He said no matter which political party was in control, the inevitable result is a pressure for science to show the answers that the party in power prefers to see.

"The best solution to this problem would be to have the public affairs offices professionally staffed, with no political appointees," he said. "If this is not possible, they should be renamed as Offices of Propaganda."

As it turns out, Hansesn has done approximately 1,400 interviews on the subject of global warming which the administration has in no way interfered with. He has indeed been instructed to skip a handful of interviews in specific instances, but come on, 1,400 interviews? No one's censoring you, man.

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No Way! CHUCK NORRIS Has a Column??


This is the greatest day of my life.

No, it's the greatest day in American history. Screw women's suffrage, the hell with VJ Day, and pooh-pooh to the Emancipation Proclamation.

Chuck Norris is writing an op-ed column for World Net Daily.

If I don't post anything for a few days, it's because I'm busy reading the wisdom of Chuck. Honestly, it doesn't matter if he's left, right, or center. It doesn't even matter if he can write. Chuck Norris is of course always correct. If you disagree with him, he'll roundhouse kick your freakin head off.

Chuck Norris is the new right.

Holy cow, his most recent article is called "A Roundhouse Kick to Credit Card Companies." No fooling. I couldn't make this crap up.

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Pat Buchanan: "The AIPAC Girl."

Interesting article at World Net Daily by Pat Buchanan (WRONG! PAT BUCHANAN!) illustrating the shallowness of the Democrats' commitment to the issues they took Congress behind. Says Buchanan:

Pelosi gets booed by the Israeli lobby, then runs back to the Hill and gives Bush a blank check for war on Iran, because that is what the lobby demands. A real candidate for Profiles in Courage.

As for the presidential candidates, it is hard to find a single one willing to stand up and say: If Bush plans to take us into another war in the Mideast, he must first come to Congress for authorization. And if he goes to war without authorization, that will be impeachable.

All retreat into the "all-options-are-on-the-table" mantra, which is another way of saying, "It's Bush's call."

The corruption of both parties is astonishing. Republicans used to be the party of the Constitution: "No more undeclared wars! No more presidential wars!"

Democrats used to be the party of the people. The people don't want this war. They don't want another. The Jewish community voted 88 percent for Democrats in November, and 77 percent oppose Iraq.

So says Gallup. Yet, just because the Israeli lobby jerked her chain, the leader of the Peoples' House has decided she and her party will leave the next war up to Bush.

The difference between the Jewish voters and the Jewish PACs tells you everything you need to know about the complete and utter disconnection between the voters, the paid activists, and the elected officials. It's like when Sports Illustrated surveyed Native Americans a few years ago about whether they found team names such as "Redskins," "Braves," and "Seminoles" offensive. SI found that 90% of Native Americans had no problem with the names; it was only the most vocal activists and political action committees that complained. Yet the issue is portrayed as if every American Indian throws shoes at the television whenever a Chiefs game is on.

Like Farrakhan, Buchanan seems to make more sense as he ages. Or maybe these gentlemen make more sense to me as I age...

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Unattractive Teacher Gets 10 Years for Sex with Student

A 35-year-old sixth grade science teacher convicted of having sex with a 13-year-old student has been sentenced to 10 years in prison. Here's the AP story.

So once again, the American judicial system has laid down the law. Under no circumstances is it acceptable for a teacher to have sexual relations with a student. Unless, of course, you're a cute chick. Men and unattractive women will get the maximum punishment.

Amber Jennings had her charges reduced from sex with a minor to disseminating harmful materials to a minor. Apparently all she did was email nude photos of herself to the student. That's not harmful, right? Because she's hot.

Margaret De Barraicua pled guilty to four counts of statutory rape after having sex with a 16-year-old special education student in her car. Parked behind an elementary school. With her two-year-old strapped in a car seat. One year of jail, five years' probation. Not hot exactly, but she certainly isn't unattractive.

Nicole Long was caught having sex with a 17-year-old boy while she was seven months pregrant. After pleading guilty to sexual battery, she was sentenced to three months in prison. Look at those adorable schoolmarm glasses! She looks kind of like one of my college girlfriends.

Everybody loves Debra Lafave, who was arrested for several counts of having sex with a 14-year-old. Her lawyer argued, "To place Debbie into a Florida state women's penitentiary, to place an attractive young woman in that kind of hell hole, is like putting a piece of raw meat in with the lions." The charges were dropped by the prosecution despite the fact that the judge had refused to accept details of the plea bargain and had indeed set a trial date. She got three months of house arrest and seven years of probation.

But America's real statutory sweetheart is Mary Kay Latourneau, right? She did jail time for having sex with a sixth grader, was released early for good behavior, then was caught in a steamed-up car with the same student. Sent back to prison for the original 7 years, she discovered she was pregnant with his second child, her sixth! (Dramatic music sting!) The boy always insisted that he was not a victim and that he loved Mary Kay. After serving her full sentence, she and her star-crossed wacky lover got married at a winery near Seattle. Entertainment Tonight paid for full access. No joke.

(In Washington, statutory rape is called "child rape." I like Washington.)

Change the genders in all these cases and you would see America's blood boil. It would be a national outrage, like the ongoing investigations into sexual abuse by Catholic priests. (Except, of course, for the fact that studies show that teachers molesting students massively dwarfs the risk of clergy molestation.) Somehow we have decided that if the adult in this transaction has a penis, it's more harmful and traumatic, as if penetration alone constitutes an act of abuse. And we certainly worship at the altar of beauty in this culture; there seems to be a very strong sentiment towards winking and saying, "I wish my hot teacher had been that cool when I was in high school."

Rape is always rape. Abuse is always abuse. Molestation is always molestation. The boys that these women are taking advantage of will be dealing with the effects of this in every interpersonal transaction for the rest of their lives. Innocence, once lost (or in these cases stolen), can not ever be returned. Trust betrayed is often irreparable. There is nothing "cool" or "sexy" about any kind of child rape. Unless, of course, the abuser is a hot woman and you're a TV executive. God, sometimes I just can't believe the unholy bargains we make to get money in this country.

So it's unfortunate for 35-year-old Rachel Holt, the woman in the headline, that she's not more attractive. Entertainment Tonight will not follow her every move, and her name will not become a household word. There's just no way to spin 28 counts of rape unless you've got the face and/or figure of a Playboy centerfold. Maybe that explains why Holt received a 10-year sentence where the average in similar cases is less than two.

In 2005, Angela Comer brought her 14-year-old "boyfriend" to Mexico where she planned to marry him. She also brought her 3-year-old son along for the trip. Her case hasn't yet been decided, so we may have a chance to get this one right. Then again, look at her picture. She just looks so adorable!

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Saturday, March 17, 2007

On Captain America's Death and the State of the Marvel Union

It seems Steve Rogers really is dead as of Captain America #25. I had hopes that it was all a ruse, but Civil War: the Confession pretty much wrapped up that loose end for me.

While I don't for a second believe this is a permanent thing, it's ironic that Marvel has brought back the un-resurrectables, Gwen Stacy and Bucky Barnes (very poorly and surprisingly well, respectively), in recent years only to have the ubiquitous Captain America killed so suddenly. If there was any doubt that Disassembled, House of M and Civil War changed everything in the Marvel Universe, it's gone now.

Cap's dead. Tony Stark is in charge of SHIELD and commands every registered superhero in America. The Avengers are nationwide. Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, and the rest of Cap's hand-picked "New" Avengers are on the run. There are now only 198 mutants in the world.

Complain about Editor-in-Chief Joe Quesada all you want, but as a writer I know what makes for good storytelling: high stakes. The Marvel Universe has a level of urgency and uncertainty now that it hasn't seen, well, ever really. In some ways, it's starting to resemble the WildStorm universe a bit, which I wholeheartedly approve of.

I still have suspicions that Steve Rogers is going to be somehow revived, and that he will take Tony Stark's place as Iron Man. This little gem of an image has been floating around the web for a few weeks...

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Thursday, March 15, 2007

VCU Beats Duke in the NCAA Tournament!

Holy cow, would you look at that headline???

Never in a million years did I imagine I'd see those words together in one sentence, but VCU has upset the Duke Blue Devils, icons of college roundball, in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. They trailed by double digits in the second half, came back, and beat Coach K's squad 79-77 behind the strong play of Eric Maynor, who was also the hero in the CAA Championship game against George Mason.

George Mason, eh? Dare the Rams fans dream of a tourney like GMU's last year?...

Initial Story!

Friday morning update!

VCU is the national sports headline.

  •'s Luke Winn says VCU guard Eric Maynor is "no ordinary underclassman."

  •'s Grant Wahl says Maynor is "one of the best March stories in years."

  • ESPN's Kim Baxter says "It's the perfect March Madness Script."

  • Associated Press: "The Rams, who never led by more than two points, overcame a 13-point first-half deficit and also trailed by seven with 8 minutes left in the game."
  • Here's some video from Fox Sports.

  • Let's look at some new pictures of Eric Maynor laying the smackdown on the Blue Devils:

    Labels: Reviews "Twelfth Night"

    Who's that knucklehead in the bowling shirt eating popcorn with Frank Creasy? I'm actually starting to get a little uncomfortable with my picture being in these reviews...

    "Eating it Up" by Deanna Geneva Lorianni

    An excerpt:

    Opening to a thoroughly packed audience of all ages at Second Presbyterian Church on Friday night, Richmond Shakespeare Theatre's performance of "Twelfth Night" is one of their best indoor performances yet. Intermixing musical accompaniment (provided mostly by actor and director of training, Andrew Hamm) with lively humor and minimal set design, the company got the whole crowd laughing throughout the entire performance.

    And that's no small feat considering the play runs just over two hours and one of the players called in sick. David White (Fight Choreographer) filled in for the two roles usually played by Thomas E. Nowlin, and successfully did so even with script in hand. In fact, it wasn't until the middle of the play when I realized the little book wasn't an intended part of his character.

    Comprising five actors, the troupe juggles 15 different roles, which quite often causes an actor to play two different characters in the same scene. Most of the time, their character-swapping works and provides the audience with the chance to see an actor's range of theatrical abilities.

    Another reviewer likes the show, but is a bit unfair to Suzanne, who really does a marvelous job in all three of her roles, especially the Officer. At least Ms. Lorianni liked the mannequin, which Susan Haubenstock didn't.

    Three shows this weekend, Friday at 8:00, Saturday at 2:00, and Saturday at 8:00. The last two weekends add Thursday 8:00 shows to that schedule. Come out and see what we've been working so hard on! This is also my last time acting for at least several months (music and directing lined up through September).

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    Wednesday, March 14, 2007

    "Migration???" Seriously?????

    President Bush, in Mexico to discuss illegal immigration, chose not to use the term "illegal immigration" in favor of the more Mexi-friendly migration. So what, illegal aliens are geese now? Or monarch butterflies??

    Blood is shooting out of my ears. This guy drives me CRAZY.

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    New York Times to Al Gore: "Cool the Hype."

    A rather surprising piece from The Times' William J. Broad yesterday.

    "From a Rapt Audience, a Call to Cool the Hype."

    An excerpt:

    Although Mr. Gore is not a scientist, he does rely heavily on the authority of science in “An Inconvenient Truth,” which is why scientists are sensitive to its details and claims.

    Criticisms of Mr. Gore have come not only from conservative groups and prominent skeptics of catastrophic warming, but also from rank-and-file scientists like Dr. [Don J.] Easterbook, who told his peers that he had no political ax to grind. A few see natural variation as more central to global warming than heat-trapping gases. Many appear to occupy a middle ground in the climate debate, seeing human activity as a serious threat but challenging what they call the extremism of both skeptics and zealots.

    Kevin Vranes, a climatologist at the Center for Science and Technology Policy Research at theUniversity of Colorado, said he sensed a growing backlash against exaggeration. While praising Mr. Gore for “getting the message out,” Dr. Vranes questioned whether his presentations were “overselling our certainty about knowing the future.”

    Typically, the concern is not over the existence of climate change, or the idea that the human production of heat-trapping gases is partly or largely to blame for the globe’s recent warming. The question is whether Mr. Gore has gone beyond the scientific evidence.

    “He’s a very polarizing figure in the science community,” said Roger A. Pielke Jr., an environmental scientist who is a colleague of Dr. Vranes at the University of Colorado center. “Very quickly, these discussions turn from the issue to the person, and become a referendum on Mr. Gore.”

    A fairly brave article from the Times, and one that is very likely to enrage most of their readership. This is kind of nice for me, because I'm very close to occupying the same ground as Easterbrook and Vranes.

    Scotto and I have been throwing grenades at each other over this issue for a couple weeks on each other's blogs. For all our differences in philosophy (as passionate as I am about resisting the tyranny of the scientific establishment, Scott argues just as strongly that urgent action to save the world is needed), I think we completely agree on many issues of action:


    Recycle everything you can.

    Drive a fuel-efficient vehicle.

    Walk or bike when you can.

    Work for alternative fuel and power sources.

    Challenge power bases that tell you what to believe.

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    Monday, March 12, 2007

    Glenn Beck: "Me, PETA, and Global Warming"

    I freaking love Glenn Beck. Reprinted with no permission whatsoever.

    The Real Story: Me, PETA & Global Warming

    Updated March 08, 2007

    By now you probably know my stance on global warming. Yes, the Earth's warmed a bit; no, I don't think there's anywhere near enough conclusive evidence to prove Miami will be under 20 feet of water if we all don't start panicking immediately.

    I believe that global warming has become more about politics and redistribution of wealth than some altruistic notion of saving the planet and today the Real Story is that the most unlikely of organizations: PETA -- a group that I literally have nothing in common with, has helped make that point even more apparent. Now, I don't know this for a fact, but I'm pretty sure PETA isn't a huge fan of this show. I mean, I'd like to eat a nice, pink-in-the-middle filet, stuffed with ham, topped with chicken, while wearing a full leather body suit......for every single meal. But thanks to global warming, PETA and I have finally found some common ground.

    In a letter to Al Gore yesterday, PETA nicely explained to him that the single best way for an individual to fight global warming is to become a vegetarian. In fact, according to the United Nations -- an organization that Al Gore is usually quite fond of citing: "raising animals for food generates more greenhouse gases than all the cars and trucks in the world -- combined. That's not from PETA, that's from the U.N.! But it's not just them; university researchers have also determined that switching to a vegan diet has more of an impact on global warming than switching your car from a Camry to a Prius!

    Now, Al, I understand that you can't change your carbon footprint easily-- I mean, you have to travel around in a jet to all those panic speeches you give, but what about your meat footprint? If you honestly -- and that's really the key word here, "honestly" -- believe that global warming is THE most important issue the world faces, bigger than terrorism or AIDS or hunger, then why haven't you started eating veggie burgers and drinking soy milk?

    PETA's letter to you says it best, " good way to hush Rush Limbaugh and his ilk" -- hey, isn't that me? -- is to, "act as a role model in the fight against global warming (and) personally become a vegetarian." Al, I could not agree more with PETA than I do right now. If you want to insulate yourself from criticism, then don't be a hypocrite; live the life you preach!

    But this isn't just about Al Gore, it's about all of the people who champion drastic lifestyle changes without leading by example. And since most of them love to use panic and fear as a motivational tool, I thought we'd give 'em a little taste of their own medicine. Click the link over the right called "An Inconvenient Meal" to see our little response.

    Incidentally, you may have noticed that I've added a couple links in the "News, Politics, and Opinion" section. Some good reading for those who oppose the intellecual tyranny of the Global Warming Panic movement.

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    Sunday, March 11, 2007

    Times-Dispatch Review of "Twelfth Night"

    A Hilarious, Minimalist Twelfth Night

    It sure is nice when Susan Haubenstock likes you. Honestly, I was so focused on getting the show right that I didn't even notice not one but three reviewers in the house on Friday night. Style Weekly and reviews are forthcoming.

    It has been so crazybusy the last couple weeks that I haven't had time to write anything about Twelfth Night. But those lucky enough to come for the first weekend had the rare pleasure of seeing Grant Mudge play a role he hasn't played in ten years with a week's rehearsal, as well as the entirely remarkable sight of Dave White bringing a polished, nuanced performance, book in hand, of roles he had been rehearsing for exactly two days.

    Suzanne Ankrum, Liz Blake (aka Fievel Pockets, my little sister), and Frank Creasy are all pretty awesome, too. So was our long long long long-suffering director, Ms. Kate Powers, whose picture is in the encyclopedia under "fearless leader." She's also one of the best damn directors I've ever worked with.

    Get well, Thomas!

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    Saturday, March 10, 2007

    News Flash: I Agree With Louis Farrakhan

    Not a lot of time for commentary today, but I did want to pass on some things that the Nation of Islam leader said in a CNN interview a couple days ago.

    Asked about Barack Obama: "I like him very much. I'm not saying I'm going to vote for him, but I like him. Because he's fresh." (Farrakhan neglected to mention if Obama was still articulate and clean, as Joe Biden informed us a while back.)

    Asked if Obama is "the answer to George Bush" (and this is where it gets really interesting): "No. I think he's capable of being an answer. But who will provide him with the money so he can contend with Mrs. Clinton and her big bank, or Giuliani and McCain and their growing bank? So the people that bankroll you, they're the ones that ultimately call the tune.... I'm saying that no matter who sits in the White House, if you don't uproot the structure that corrupts them you still don't have a President. You have a figurehead."

    Asked "Do you think Barack Obama can do that?": "No. Absolutely not. He knows some of the ugliness of politics because he's been in it long enough. But the real wickedness of the face of politics, you're looking right into the face of Satan himself. And Satan doesn't intend to be uprooted by an upstart from Chicago. Or Mrs. Clinton from New York."

    Fascinating stuff from a man who has so often been a self-caricature, surrounded by his posse of bow-tied Farra-clones. It's amazing what age and facing your own mortality can do to your perspective. How seldom we listen to the quiet voices of the aged and wise as they're drowned out by the young and passionate.

    I'm very glad to hear someone with the courage and insight to recognize that there are no white hats in Washington any more. There are just people who have been bought with the special interest money you paid into, running against the people who have been bought by the special interests you didn't.

    There was a time when you could walk up to the White House and knock on the door to make an appointment with the President. Obviously, John Wilkes Booth had a big hand in changing that, as did population explosion and the celebritization of elected office. But the structure is so corporate now that it's not only hard to believe in these clowns, it's nearly impossible not to disbelieve all of them. Rhetoric, election, and politics supersede national interest on a daily basis: just look at how both sides (especially the right) are kowtowing to illegal aliens, trying to court their future vote while leaving our borders wide open for drug- and human-smugglers, not to mention potential WMD-smugglers. And the left's constant moving of the goal posts in the Middle East is the most obvious electioneering in my lifetime: voting for the war, then complaining about it, then running on ending the war, then non-binding resolutions, then confirming a new commander in Iraq, then threatening to de-fund hm and dictating his time table months before any changes in the situation on the ground could possibly become apparent.

    If there is any point to the political content on this blog, it is this: There are no white hats here. Don't blindly trust your heroes on either side of the aisle. They are NOT working for you.

    Farrakhan's right. Follow the money. The marionette strings lead into Hell.

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    Tuesday, March 06, 2007

    VCU Wins the CAA Tournament!

    Go Rams!

    Led by Eric Maynor, the Rams went on a 13-2 run to close the game, erasing a 5-point deficit to claim the CAA crown from last year's national Cinderella sweethearts, George Mason. Maynor, a sophomore, turned steals after steal into a comeback, scoring 9 straight points in the final minutes.

    VCU is 27-6, the best record in school history, and they are the CAA champeens! If you get a chance to see them, watch senior B.A. Walker extra-closely. He was a student in my Essentials of Public Speaking class three years ago, and he's a really good kid.

    VCU's on the front page of and Verizon's sports page. Nice piece by Bill Trocchi on SI. Now if they can create a quarter of the excitement Mason did last year, maybe I'll actually start giving more than half a crap about college basketball.

    Sunday, March 04, 2007

    Pet Peeve #0001: The World Is My Ashtray

    Smokers: I beg you. Stop throwing your spent cigarette butts out the freaking window of your car.

    What the heck are you thinking, huh? That just because it's small it's insignificant? How many of those damn things do you toss out of the car in a day? In a week? In a year?

    I am so tired of coming up to stoplights only to see a gigantic pile of non-biodegradable filters heaped up against the curb. Is your mom going to come pick them up for you?

    You have an ashtray in your car for a reason. You have a trash can at your house for a reason. Please stop using the public streets as a dumping ground for the dregs of your nauseating habit.

    With love,



    Thursday, March 01, 2007

    Doom for America Update

    Doctor Doom has just reminded me that his visage has slipped far down the page. He commands me to add a new picture to remind all Americans of his looming presence. Personally, I think he has an exaggerated sense of the size of my readership, but when you've got a proton disruptor aimed at your crotch, you listen to the main commanding the robot pointing it at you.

    So here he is:

    Quite the "come hither" glance he's got there. Actually, it's more of a "Come hither immediately or I will vaporize you instantly" thing...


    Sorry I'm So Cranky and Conservative This Week.

    Title says it all. Please don't stop reading because I'm channeling Glenn Beck and William F. Buckley this week. One of these days Ill write about one of the thing's I'm super-lefty about, like gun control, education, or the death penalty. I've just been reading a lot of stuff that's gotten me all riled up lately. Last night's Doctor Faustus discussion at Reveille UMC has me feeling really self-righteous about the minority science movements I follow, too. And I had a dental exam today, so I'm uber-cranky.

    No fillings or root canals this time, at least!

    Global Warming Update: 2/28/07!

    According to the National Weather Service, this was the coldest February in Richmond since 1979. Coincidentally, 1979 is the year Newsweek published their groundbreaking scientific expose on Global Cooling and the coming ice age that would cover the northern third of the U.S.A. in glaciers.

    But you can just add this to the pile of inconvenient truths that the Inconvenient Truth crowd turns a blind eye to. Al Gore's political agenda isn't served by snow in southern California for the first time since 1962, it isn't served by record snows in the Midwest and Northeast, and it certainly isn't served by NASA scientists noting that Mars' polar ice caps are shrinking more than usual. Either someone's driving a whole hell of a lot of Hummers up and down Olympus Mons or there's a force much more powerful than man controlling climate fluctuation. Like the Sun, for example.

    You want to talk about the GWBA fostering an environment of fear to enable a social agenda? How about looking at Global Warming Incorporated, which efficiently obfuscates or discredits scientists who even suggest that man-made causes just might not be a major culprit in climate change.

    Pretty soon, they'll be writing the Ice Age out of history books...

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