Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Another Shiner for the Eye Network

What is CBS thinking? Or is it? For the first part of the 13th (rather appropos) season, Survivor is dividing its tribes according to race. I.e., the tribes will consist of Asians, Hispanics, blacks, and whites. Using a "separate but equal" logic, Survivor creator Mark Burnett explains, "By putting  people in tribes, they clearly have to get rid of people of their own ethnicity: So that's not racial at all." GM pulled out of its sponsorship of show claiming that it had nothing to do with the controversy and that it had no prior knowledge of the race-based element of this season. Are you listening, Mr. Orwell?

Cf. and

CBS Lipos Chubby Couric

CBS employees slimmed a Katie Couric pic (via PhotoShop) as they prepared to promo her to lead the erstwhile Tiffany network's news division. As Cronkite readies to crown Couric as CBS Evening News anchor, Rather's spirit seems to be haunting that once august division. In addressing Uncle Walter's intro for the perky princess, (remember) a top CBS source said, "This is a bold statement of continuity  and 'trust,' a commitment to the quality of the CBS Evening News." Perhaps, it's more of a comment on continuity rather than a transferrence of truth.


Tuesday, August 29, 2006

F.B.I. Most Wanted Polygamist Nabbed

Warren Jeffs, a polygamist on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted list, was nabbed late last night on I15 just north of Las Vegas in his red SUV Cadillac Escalade on a routine traffic stop. Jeffs is the fifty-year old leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-day Saints. He is wanted for suspicion of sexual misconduct in UT and AZ for purportedly arranging marriages between major males and minor females. Now Jeffs no longer has the notoriety of being grouped with Osama bin Laden but is relegated to defendants in sex cases with the likes of John Karr.


Monday, August 28, 2006

Karr Back on Road to Anonymity

John Karr's DNA does not match the JonBenet Ramsey crime scene DNA according to two NBC station KUSA sources. (The Denver Police Department Crime tested Karr's hair and saliva that were obtained upon his arrival in Boulder Thursday.) Further, KUSA has confirmed that the Boulder DA will not bring charges against him. Poor, sad soul: who in their right mind would want to be blamed for such an atrocious crime if he/she were innocent? To think that this individual would deem to drag the nation through a gut-wrenching trial that did not bring justice to JonBenet and closure to the country is unbelievably perverse.


AOL Counter Croaks

When AOL is trying to retain its diminishing customer base (from @ 30+ million to @17.5 million users), you would think that its techs would fix its irritating re-setting journal counter. I called its customer service, and the rep indicated that he couldn't do anything about it: he suggested that I write an e-mail to the AOL acephalus (now ensconced in a fetal position). I.e., put your problem in the suggestion box (that might get answered, or, more likely discarded). As a blog writer, it's nice to know the potential readership of the journal or, at least, how many hits the site is receiving. However, my Carpe Diem counter has reset thrice: ergo, I've removed it from the page.

While I'm venting, AOL tends to treat its Mac users like second-class citizens. Whereas AOL allows PC users to spellcheck, link, etc., it gives Mac users basically the write to type and include pics from their comps or Hometown links (if they have them). Of course, when a Mac user calls into tech support (even using the special Mac number), he/she should not be surprised if he/she gets sent to general customer support or PC tech support.

Cronkite Anchors Couric to CBS

Amid luminaries in the broadcast galaxy, Walter Cronkite, once known as the "most trusted man in America," will introduce Katie Couric to the nation on her opening night as CBS News anchor. A top CBS source said, "This is a bold statement of continuity and 'trust,' a commitment to the quality of the CBS Evening News." Since Dan Rather, her non-interim predecessor, is not passing the torch, that statement seems more than a tacit admission by CBS that the folksy, Texan has tarnished the Tiffany network's news reputation. After CBS' exile of Cronkite during the Rather years, it seems ironic that they have returned to him to restore an air of credibility to CBS. (Of course, those who have followed Uncle Walter's pontifications in the news wilderness realize that he has outed himself as an uber liberal: unless you are a NPR junkie, you may not be overly awed by CBS' transferral of "trust.")


Saturday, August 26, 2006

Pluto Sent Back to Hades

In Prague Thursday at the International Astronomical Union meeting, astronomers banished Pluto from the planetary pantheon back to his hellish home: ergo, they deprived us of one our celeberated heavenly orbs. What is going on? Is there a conspiracy to discombobulate Everyman (or Everywomyn)? We have U.S. legislators trying to "save money" by purging pennies from our coin species: these carping cochleffels even want to expunge our trusty George Washington with a surly Susan B. Anthony. Will these pontificating panjandrums ever leave us and well enough alone?

Cf. "Third rock's atronomers 'dwarf' Pluto's status in the solar system," USA Today (Aug. 25-27, 2006), Section A, page 1.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Nagin Nox NYC

The Big Easy's mayor Ray Nagin would have none of CBS 60 Minutes correspondent Byron Pitts' condescending carp. As he took Pitts on a tour of the Ninth Ward, he remarked with pride that the city had removed most of the detritus on public property. Pitts pointed out a house that had been moved off of its foundation and was protruding into the street and cars on the thoroughfare that had also been damaged by the flooding aftermath of Katrina: the city chief was not overly amused. Nagin retorted, "That's alright: you guys in New York can't get a hole in the ground fixed, and it's five years later." He added, "So let's be fair." Of course, Nagin's knock of the Big Apple is reverberating through that urbane, sophisticated city's media: Louisiana has that joie de vivre that doesn't cotton to Yankee patronizing.


Thursday, August 24, 2006

FDA: No Rx Needed 4 Morning-After Pill

Today the Food and Drug Administration decided that women 18 and older will not need a medical prescription to obtain the morning-after drug. However, women younger than 18 will continue to need a doctor's permission to obtain Plan B, the moniker for the new pills. Basically, this drug is a very strong dose of the one contained within the regular birth control pill. If taken within the first 72 hours after "unprotected" sex, the probability of pregnancy is reduced by up to 89%. If the woman is pregnant already, the pills purportedly have no effect. (As J notes in the first comment, infra., the morning-after pill also precludes the implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus.) Proponents of the over-the-counter sales point out that doctors are difficult to find on weekends and holidays. Opponents counter that women may get a false sense of security and that minors may be forced to take the pills by their adult partners.


Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Britney: 2 Tabu 4 Tokyo

Tokyo's metro has refused to allow a Harper's Bazaar advert featuring Britney Spears nude and heavy with child a la Demi Moore. Officials labeled the pic "too stimulating" for some of their subway customers. Brit must be overjoyed that she can still titillate--even if it's the conservative constituency of the emperor's erstwhile Edo--after her vid that exhibited her belching and bemoaning her paucity of pulchritude. Now she may not have to listen as much to Christina sing, "You Are Beautiful No Matter What They Say."


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Cruise Jetsam

After fourteen years of A-list star treatment by Paramount Pictures, Cruise was jettisoned by its parent company Viacom's chairman Sumner Redstone. Redstone said, "As much as we like him personally, we thought it was wrong to renew his deal: his recent conduct has not been acceptable to Paramount." Shortly after the debut of Mission: Impossible III, USA Today conducted a poll in which 1/2 of the respondents indicated that they had an unfavorable view of the Risky Business star. They cited his off-screen behavior which included his vociferous advocacy of Scientology, his acrimonious attack on psychiatry, and his cutting criticism of Brooke Shields (as to her taking medicine to cope with postpartum depression). I guess poor Tom has "jumped the shark," or, rather, the sofa.

Cf.;;; and

Free Speech Lesson Up in Smoke

Stuart Middle School seventh-grade social studies teacher Dan Holden gave his students a lesson in free speech that they likely won't forget. In each of his two social studies classes, the Louisville, KY, teacher burned a small American flag to inspire his students to write an essay on their first amendment rights. Even though school district officials received only one complaint, they reassigned Holden to non-instructional work and contacted fire officials as to the flag burnings. He now faces possible criminal charges as to child endangerment with regard to the open flame in the classroom. Holden had no prior disciplinary record.

Cf. and

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I Ain't Missing U at All

Today is the anniversary of the death of a very dear person. His life impacted mine as he wed a dear, sweet sis and fathered the most special of children. Like his earthly father and, more importantly, like his heavenly Father, he brought love, joy, and compassion to his family, other sojourners in faith, and to his proverbial neighbor. I, and we, love you, J, and look forward to seeing you in that heavenly realm.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Rollin' Stones Gather Moss

In the home country, Mick and his chaps are not getting any satisfaction (or R-E-S-P-E-C-T). Hundreds of their tickets are going unsold for concerts in G.B., e.g., in Twickenham (tomorrow & Tues.), Cardiff, and Glasgow. On eBay, bids for tickets are at a pound, even a pence. Promoters are going so far as to put up last minute billboards on main arteries into London to get rid of the glut. To the further chagrin of the highest grossing tour band in the world, their tickets are being sold to seniors at half price by Saga, an English elders' discount company.


Thursday, August 17, 2006

Domestic Flight Scare: Bottles with Explosive Residue

Update: The Tri-State Airport (Huntington, WV) reopened after a ten-hour closing when subsequent chemical tests proved negative although both the airport security checkpoint machine and a canine team tested positive. The Pakistani woman was very cooperative according to officials, and she was taken from the airport at 5 p.m. by federal authorities.

Cf. citation (which has also been updated), infra.

Transportation Security Administration spokeswoman Amy von Walter revealed that screeners at Tri-State Airport in Huntington, W. Va., have discovered two bottles of liquid that tested positive for explosive residue in the carry-on of a 28-year-old Pakistani woman. The Pakistani woman, a Huntington resident (earlier a resident of Jackson, Michigan), had purchased a one-way ticket to Detroit via Charlotte. According to Jeff Killeen, an FBI spokesperson, the woman was at the airport but had not been arrested. Albeit unclear, it seems apparent that she was being detained and questioned.


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Hezbollah v. Israel: Did David Win?

According to Nasrallah and Khatami, Hezbollah won. According to Ohlmert and Bush, Israel did. Lebanon seems to be the only unanimous loser. Who really won?

JonBenet Murder Confession

According to FNC, John Mark Karr, a forty-one year old American second grade teacher held in Thailand on sex charges, has allegedly admitted to the murder of five-year-old beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey a decade ago. After his confession to Thai police and ICE in Bangkok, he was subsequently arrested on charges pertaining thereto. In his confession, Karr purportedly included facts unknown to the public: however, authorities do not have any corroborating DNA or handwriting evidence from him. Reportedly, Karr sent e-mail for the last three to four years to individuals close to the case, including Patsy Ramsey, JonBenet's mother, describing in lurid detail the sexual assault and murder of JonBenet. [Allegedly, Karr lived in Conyers, GA, outside of Atlanta, near or in the same place where the Ramseys lived after they lived in Boulder: further, early sources indicated that Karr may have once resided in Colorado and was interviewed by police in the early stages of the investigation.] Reports indicate that Karr is to be brought back to the States this weekend and that the Boulder DA's office will hold a teleconference tomorrow at 4:00 p.m. E.T. about the case. JonBenet's father issued a statement shortly after the arrest of Karr that he and Patsy had been informed by the Boulder, CO, DA's office of the investigation of Karr and his imminent arrest and that he was (and as Patsy, now deceased as of June 24, 2006, undoubtedly would have been) pleased.

Cf.,1299,DRMN_15_4921245,00.html, the Drudge Report, and FNC.

What Will Raul Say?

In the August 5, 2006, obituary section of the Economist, Ung Choeun (better known by his moniker Ta Mok, meaning "respected grandfather"), the last remaining leader of Cambodia's Khmer Rouge (KR) leaders was covered. (Under the communist Cambodian regime, 1.7 million of a population of 7 million were killed through executions or other aggravated circumstances.) After the 1979 fall of the KR government, Pol Pot's more philistine and hardline comrade-in-arms took control of the Marxist movement yet continued to keep the philosopher-first citizen in his protective custody until his death. When Pol Pot died, Ta Mok eulogized him, saying that he had dropped "like a ripe papaya" and was now no more than "cow sh*t." He added that Pol Pot was less than that because manure is useful. How will Raul praise Fidel?

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Victoria's Secret Model's Bro: Bottle Bomber?

Abdul Wahid, a recent Caucasian convert to Islam and formerly known as Don Stewart-Whyte, is the 19 y.o. brother of top 1990's Victoria's Secret model Heather Stewart-Whyte. (She has been a runway model for various elite fashion houses and is the former wife of Yannick Noah, erstwhile French tennis star and current rock/reggae performer.) Also, Abdul Wahid is the son of now deceased Tory activist Douglas Stewart-Whyte. Wahid (or Wah-hid), described as a "mummy's boy" by a neighbor, was arrested by coppers on suspicion of being involved in apparently a jihadist attempt to bomb approximately nine airliners heading from various U.K. cities to sundry U.S. ones.

Cf.;; and

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Terrorist Threat Thwarted

Police report that they thwarted a terror plot by at least 21 (up to 50) young Brits of Pakistani origin to down up to ten planes on flights from the U.K. to the U.S. (The cities of departure were London, Birmingham, Manchester, and Glasgow.) If successful, it would have exceeded 9-11 in its scope in the number of lives taken. The plan apparently involved liquid chemical cannisters that were to be carried onto the planes in carry-on luggage and later explode in midair. Passengers on flights from Heathrow to the States are prohibited from taking carry-on luggage or liquid onto planes: however, exceptions are made for mothers with infants. (Mothers are being made to taste the baby milk before being allowed to board.) Most European and all Tel Aviv flights into Heathrow other than ones already in the air have been cancelled. The U.K.'s Home Office raised the public risk level to "critical" from "severe." The U.S. has raised the alert level on flights from Great Britain to red and on other commercial aviation within or into the U.S. to orange. American officials believe that there was a very serious Al Qaeda connection.

Cf. Sky News and FNC.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

Lieberman Loses

Joe Lieberman lost his bid for the Connecticut Democratic primary yesterday to Ned Lamont, a vocal anti-war and anti-Bush advocate. Lieberman, the "moral voice" of his party, has combined a liberal domestic policy with a hawkish foreign policy (in the Middle East) during his tenure as senator. However, the lib blogoshere and the gang were not as willing as Bush Republicans (e.g., as to Specter) to give their black sheep pol unwavering support. Former Prez Clinton and his wife gave Joe their lukewarm backing: they were undoubtedly grateful that he decided not to call for the President's impeachment or punishment during Monicagate but still a bit miffed that he sermonized about Bill's sin. Also, George's kiss of death didn't help things either.

Friday, August 4, 2006

Raul in Charge: Fidel at Large

Gramna, Cuba's paper of record, stated, "Raul is firmly at the helm of the nation and the armed forces." The front page of the Communist Party organ lionized Raul as a hero in its account of his arrest at the tender age of 22 after the daring assault in 1953 on the Moncada garrison in Santiago led by his elder brother. Rumors of Fidel's demise have reverberated thoughtout the Cuban community in the States, and the recent statements and stories emanating from Gramna are not dampening the speculation.


Thursday, August 3, 2006

Swedish Sweetie Stymies Soldiers

According to Aftonbladet, a Swedish bathing beauty caused a bit of a stir when she decided to bask in the sun in an Albanian village in the European manner. Abashed local women fled the shore with their children in tow and alerted the police to this strange siren. Soldiers were sent to the scene but were unable to accomplish their mission because they were not conversant in the lovely's language. Doubtless, these keepers of the peace lingered at the scene to insure that the public order was not disturbed.


Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Kerry Advocates Universal Health Care

Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) advocates universal health care for U.S. citizens by the year 2012. After Hillary's misguided and failed attempt to bring coverage to all American citizens which had so many tethers as if to make each soul a marionette, one would think that the very idea would be an anathema to candidates of either party. Perhaps, Kerry ruminated over the idea with George Soros over martinis in a jacuzzi or sauna in Davos but, at least, he came up with an idea whose time has come. It seems self-evident that all Americans regardless of their financial situation, ethnic extraction, or any other classification should have the right to affordable health care. It is time that the government intervenes on the side of those who cannot afford health insurance and/or those who simply cannot provide the "pound of flesh" demanded by the medical industry from those who are not insured, are not members of an HMO, and are not covered by Medicare/Medicaid/and/or other governmental assistance. One begins to think that voting Democratic may have a merit or two.


Mel Gibson Death Wish?

According to Hollywood Daily, a source very close to Gibson's situation said, "[Gibson] was really on the verge of suicide because he felt he was helpless to alcohol and didn't know what to do with it." He/she added, "This was a death wish." Gibson was stopped last Friday at 2:36 a.m. in Malibu going 87 mph (in a 45 mph zone) on Pacific Coast Highway with a half-full bottle of Tequila in his back seat; he was charged with a D.U.I. after his blood-alchohol level tested at 0.12 (over CA's legal limit of 0.08); and then he was handcuffed and later booked after he tried to flee. (Pictures by an InTouch mag photog showed him bleary-eyed amid a bevy of beauties at Moon Shadows, a popular Malibu restaurant, earlier that night before the arrest.) Allegedly, Gibson made derogatory statements in re Jews to deputy Mee, a veteran of 17 years who is Jewish. Mee stated, "That stuff is booze talking." Gibson's publicist averred, "[Mel Gibson] is fighting for his life [in his struggle with alcohol]." The ramifications in Hollywood which has a significant Jewish influence is unclear: his Passion of the Christ engendered few new friends but its blockbuster status insured his continued viability.  Thus far, ABC has cancelled Flory, a Gibson Holocaust-related miniseries, but it's parent company Disney still intends to issue his Apocalypto. UPDATE: For Mel Gibson's personal apology in his own words, go to

Cf.;;,1,19622,00.html; and FNC's Fox News Live.