Black Shards Press – Electronic Gumbo is Our Specialty

Congress and Stupid Law Tricks

31.08.2009 (8:38 pm) – Filed under: Liberalism,Politics ::

image A recent Rasmussen poll showed that only 29% of Americans are confident that Congress knows what its doing with regard to the economy.  This isn’t a great number, obviously, but it’s higher than I would have expected.  Not surprisingly it’s liberals who make up the bulk of those comfortable with the Democrats’ handling of the economic situation.  But two small, unrelated incidents frame the fundamental problem with their big-government agenda. 

The first act in our drama takes place in New York City, the original home of big government, where a cigar shop owner inadvertently ran afoul of the law by plugging in a coffee machine for his customers.

more »

The Tragedy of the Week

28.08.2009 (5:19 pm) – Filed under: Literature,Media ::

image With Ted Kennedy and Dominick Dunne passing on this week you might think this article is about one of them but you’d be wrong.  No, the real tragedy of the week is the end of Levar Burton’s Reading Rainbow, the PBS show the Roots and Star Trek star used to pass on his love of literature to children all over the country.

Kennedy and Dunne have left a temporary void, but their shoes will be filled and most likely sooner rather than later.  Conversely, the Reading Rainbow, the 3rd longest-running PBS series of all-time, will likely not be replaced.  New techniques in reading education, it is believed, make Burton’s motivational techniques irrelevant.

more »

A Texan’s Response to Obama’s Spending, Medical Agenda

26.08.2009 (9:06 am) – Filed under: Health,Politics ::

Despite Democrats’ assertions that resistance to their massive spending programs and plans to create a taxpayer-funded healthcare program have been artificially generated, Sam Bates of Lubbock county, Texas, knows what he thinks about liberals’ agenda and he doesn’t like it. 

A rancher, Bates took the figurative pen in hand and plowed the message “Say no to OBAMA” into the earth for all to see:

image

Amen.

Lest you fall for the left’s tactic of racial politics, consider what Bates had to say about his missive:

You know, it’s not so much Obama, but just some of the things he’s done recently with the health bill he’s trying to pass through, and it’s just as much republican and democrats fault in the House and the Senate that won’t stand up to some of the things. That’s basically what’s frustrated me

None of this is about the fact that President Obama is a black man.  People have much greater concerns than that, namely the $7-9T that Democrats are planning to spend on their agenda items, the fact that they are lying about their healthcare plan being deficit-neutral, and the plan’s inevitable transfer of healthcare dollars away from the middle class.

h/t Sister Toldjah

Hillary’s Uphill Fight Against Sexual Violence

22.08.2009 (11:11 am) – Filed under: Africa,Islam,Justice ::

image Hillary Clinton has arguably done more to combat sexual violence in Africa in her short time as Secretary of State than the entire U.N. has in the last decade.  Mrs. Clinton had this to say about visiting the Congo and witnessing the aftermath of the brutality of life there:

While I was in the DRC, I had very frank discussions about sexual violence with President Kabila. I stressed that the perpetrators of these crimes, no matter who they are, must be prosecuted and punished. This is particularly important when they are in positions of authority, including members of the Congolese military, who have been allowed to commit these crimes with impunity.

There are lessons that people in the U.S. and the rest of the civilized world can learn simply from reading this single paragraph.  We do not have to visit Africa and see the mauled and maimed women first-hand to realize that, whatever our differences politically, we really have a minimal number of problems to deal with in our lives and that it is our general adherence to the rule of law, with all of its compulsions and flaws, that creates the sense – and more than that, the reality – of security most westerners enjoy day in and day out.  Yet even here freedom and safety is not universal.  I’ll discuss below the latest court case regarding the practice of Islamic honor killings.

more »

The Health Care Debate We’re Not Having

20.08.2009 (2:58 pm) – Filed under: Health,Medicine,Politics ::

imageI was privy to an an email Michael Merritt recently received from a self-described liberal who called him an idiot for writing about the hypocrisy of the left’s attacks on John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods.  In the exchange that followed, that hypocrisy was demonstrated at its most fundamental level by Michael’s accuser.  Free speech and individual thought are, in the minds of liberals, their birthright alone and must be denied to anyone who doesn’t think and speech in like fashion.

That was John Mackey’s crime.  Mackey is the president of a company that manufactures products deemed acceptable to the true believers on the left.  At least they were acceptable until Mackey wrote this gem of an editorial for the Wall Street Journal, which included this pithy truth that incensed many of his leftist customers:

A careful reading of both the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution will not reveal any intrinsic right to health care, food or shelter. That’s because there isn’t any. This “right” has never existed in America.

Indeed, this is the core of the matter and what should be the center of the health care debate.  Unfortunately, the discussion is centered elsewhere, the unfortunate and incorrect assumption that health care is a God-given right having been tacitly accepted by leaders of both parties.

Presumedly this acceptance, made evident by Republicans having provided their own version of an expanded government health care program, was made semi-consciously, the reflexive act of politicians shying away from a controversial principle and the necessity to uphold it, for political reasons.

Nevertheless, this is the health care debate that we should be having.  The question should be, “Should the government offer any sort of health care benefit?”, not “What kind of health care program should we implement, how much should it cost, and who will it cover?”  These are interesting questions; however, until the former is answered, resoundingly, as an affirmative they are also irrelevant.

more »

The Haircut

20.08.2009 (7:44 am) – Filed under: Humor ::

In an email from Chuck Moore:

One day a florist went to a barber for a haircut. After the cut, he asked About his bill, and the barber replied, “I cannot accept money from you, I’m doing community service this week.” The florist was pleased and left The shop. When the barber went to open his shop the next morning, there was A ‘thank you’ card and a dozen roses waiting for him at his door.

Later, a cop comes in for a haircut, and when he tries to pay his bill, the Barber again replied, “I cannot accept money from you, I’m doing community Service this week.” The cop was happy and left the shop. The next morning When the barber went to open up, there was a ‘thank you’ card and a dozen Donuts waiting for him at his door.

Then a Congressman came in for a haircut, and when he went to pay his bill, The barber again replied, “I can not accept money from you. I’m doingCommunity service this week.” The Congressman was very happy and left the Shop. The next morning, when the barber went to open up, there were a dozenCongressmen lined up waiting for a free haircut.

And that, my friends, illustrates the fundamental difference between the Citizens of our country and the politicians who run it!!

Not completely fair, but as stereotypical humor, far from inaccurate.

Daily Dose of Marilyn

18.08.2009 (1:02 pm) – Filed under: Celebrities ::

Marilyn Monroe

Amusingly, a widow whose husband’s bones rest above Marilyn’s is auctioning off hubby’s tomb above the late movie star in order to pay off her 1.6M pound mortgage. 

Currently the ebay price has been bid up to $4.5M, making Mrs. Poncher a tidy profit and, perhaps, giving her the last word over her spouse.  Call me a cynic, but I have wonder if the idea of finally “winning him” away from Monroe won’t give her a certain sense of victory…

Teaching the Bible in Texas Classrooms

17.08.2009 (6:17 pm) – Filed under: Education,Religion ::

Sara Story of KLTA reports that a Texas state law that requires all public schools to offer “information relating to the Bible in their curriculum”.  The law was passed 2 years ago and is set to go into effect for the new school year.

For better or worse, some schools have stalled out when it comes to complying with the the law because it is vaguely worded and because the state has refused to provide funding to implement the mandate.

There is also the small matter of parental opposition to contend with as well, to no one’s surprise.  People in the town of Whitehouse, social studies teacher John Keeling looks at the matter this way:

The purpose of a course like this isn’t even really to get kids to believe it, per se, it is just to appreciate the profound impact that it has had on our history and on our government.

more »

Women’s Rights Under Assault in Afghanistan

14.08.2009 (11:48 pm) – Filed under: Afghanistan,Women's Rights ::

image Perhaps there is little room for leaders with principles in the new Afghanistan.  After all, Muslim extremists still control significant territory and threaten the would-be civilized regions.  But given everything that America and Britain have poured into the country since pushing the Islamofascist Taliban into the mountains, I would expect more from Hamid Karzai’s government than to cave into the fundamentalists on something so, well, fundamental as a woman’s right to control when she has sex.  Basic as they are, such expectations are apparently for naught in the country western blood built.

Afghanistan has quietly passed a law permitting Shia men to deny their wives food and sustenance if they refuse to obey their husbands’ sexual demands, despite international outrage over an earlier version of the legislation which President Hamid Karzai had promised to review.

“Tamkeen is the readiness of the wife to submit to her husband’s reasonable sexual enjoyment, and her prohibition from going out of the house, except in extreme circumstances, without her husband’s permission. If any of the above provisions are not followed by the wife she is considered disobedient.”

Evidently in Afghanistan it takes a real man to starve a woman until she’s ready to fuck.  Very impressive.  Disgusting as that sickening provision is, the new “Men are Gods” law is even worse than that.

The new final draft of the legislation also grants guardianship of children exclusively to their fathers and grandfathers, and requires women to get permission from their husbands to work.

In other words, if the beatings and starvation doesn’t work the so-called husband can deny his wife all contact with her own children.  Just one more form of leverage meant to enforce the feeble illusion of virility in the region’s males.

Could this be one of the reasons that women were on the front line of the election protests in Iran?  I wouldn’t doubt it in the least.  The most oppressed value freedom more than anyone else.

Abdul-Latif Moussa, Gaza’s David Koresh?

14.08.2009 (5:47 pm) – Filed under: Islam,Middle East,Terrorism ::

image Abdul-Latif Moussa leads an Islamic terrorist group called Jund Ansar Allah that as of now is literally fighting for its survival in the Gaza Strip.  But their opponent isn’t the Israeli Defense Forces as one might expect; rather, Moussa’s group is holed up in a mosque surrounded by hundreds of armed members of Hamas.  At least 10 members of the group, whose unlikely name means Army of the Helpers of God, have been killed already with dozens more still inside. 

Details are sketchy.  However, Moussa’s group is antagonistic toward Hamas because they feel that the latter are not radical enough in their opposition to Israel and the west.  That’s saying something, obviously.

Moussa may have brought the attack on his people by declaring Gaza an “Islamic emirate” and denying Hamas’ leadership of the region.  In doing so he has put his own people’s lives in harms way and risks going out in flames, the Gaza Strip’s very own David Koresh, he of Texas’ Branch Davidian infamy.

In typical terrorist leader fashion, Hamas leader Ismail Haniya resisted any stray impulses he might have had along the lines of taking the high road by blaming the radical Muslim group’s actions on Israel, saying:

“These declarations [of an Islamic emirate] are aimed towards incitement against the Gaza Strip and an attempt at recruiting an international alliance against the Gaza Strip.

“And we warn those who are behind these Israeli Zionist declarations: the Gaza Strip only contains its people.”

Incredible.  Hamas has virtually no credibility on the international stage as it is and for good reason.  As Haniya’s refusal to acknowledge reality and call out Moussa for what he is demonstrates, Hamas has no intention of dealing honestly and above boards with the civilized world.