…in the sense that there is apparently no there there:

“The explanations offered by prosecutors and investigators in an attempt to justify their actions and persuade the court that they did not use the defendants’ compelled testimony were all too often contradictory, unbelievable and lacking in credibility,” Urbina wrote.

The confederate yankee has this to say:

I don’t think that this dismissal means that these contractors were necessarily innocent, but the political focus of the investigation means we long ago lost any chance there was of ever determining if there was any justification for the guards to open and then maintain their fire.

He suggests there might have been some there there at one time. Glenn has the best explanation as to why this is happening now:


That’s pretty much it, end it after the election was done but before the next one can start.

…to give you an idea of how good he was look at these pitching stats.

First lets start with the World Series, in 31 innings of World Series play he gave up 3 earned runs. That is an ERA of 0.87 against the National League Champion!

In the regular season he started 148 games and completed 107. That in itself is not so odd given his era, but consider this out of those 107 completed games 17 were shutouts.

Run that through your head, One out of every 8 starts he made was a shutout. That’s a slightly worse rate than Koufax, about the same rate as Bob Gibson but much worse than Walter Johnson, but if you can be mentioned in the same breath as these guys without looking bad, then you are really something.

No offense to Aaron, Bonds, Killebrew, Mays, Dimaggio, Mantle, Williams, Snyder, Ripken, Greenberg, Stan the Man, Yaz, Berra, Manny, Griffy, McGwire, Henderson, Pujols, Banks, Robinson, Josh Gibson and Ichrio et/al. When any of those guys put up pitching numbers half as good as Ruth to go along with their great offensive numbers then we’ll talk about who was greater than the babe and not before.

Remember that Big Finish is GMT which is 5 hours ahead of EST, so when this post goes up at 8 a.m. EST it is 1 p.m GMT. You have till 7 p.m and not a second later to put in that order.

I never collected the Short trips books myself but i’m likely going to grab one or two just to try them out. At least a few have stories by Eddie Robson who is the best writer of Dr. Who audios that i’ve seen.

Might not be a bad idea for Christmas gifts next year for the Dr. Who fan, books store pretty easy.

…hopefully just not yet.

Seriously we conservatives need to remember that the graveyards are full of indefensible men and sooner or later Rush will die, or simply retire. This is a basic fact of life. After all as he has said many times, it is talent on loan from God.

Idolitry is a not only a sin, it is foolish. Rush is the best at what he does, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy what other people do. Babe Rush was and is the greatest baseball player who ever lived, (Ok name another player who hit for power and average like him, stole over 100 bases AND had a won loss record of 94-46 with a career ERA of 2.28!) but that doesn’t mean that Lou Geherg, Ted Williams, Joe DiMaggio, Stan Musial or Hank Aaron or Derek Jeter are not worth watching.

Sooner or later someone of Rush’s quality will rise again and our liberal friends will be up in arms, but it will not be because the person will be the next Rush Limbaugh, it will be because it will be the first of themselves.

Update: Why do I have an image of this scene with Rush as Peter Davidson and Sarah Palin as Colin Baker

Likely because we are 24 hours away from the 10th Doctor’s Regeneration.

now that Rush apparently is in the hospital with chest pains.

I’d keep an eye on memeorandum and see what the comments at the liberal sites are. Perhaps I’m being unfair but when this shows up at the Huffpo I’ll be really surprised to see comments open.

Update: Surprise Surprise Surprise and she is right this is THE twitter of the day:

Irony = Hoping Rush Limbaugh Dies. Then asking for citizens to trust you with power.

If you really want to see nasty comments check out the “pop” side of memeorandum “WeSmirch“. The comments particularly at popeater are really something.

Update: American Power links, thanks muchly.

Q: Why is Robert Stacy using my shtick <thanks USCitizen> to talk about my state election for senate?

What a lot of people forget is that Massachusetts was once a solid GOP state till Tip O’Neil and John McCormick decided to try to change it so a statewide effort needs to be made but it takes time and effort to recruit candidates and to convince fatalistic Massachusetts residents that it can be done.

We live here, we have seen what these changes have done to our state and yet as a population we have elected Liberals in vast numbers. Some are nice guys, I met congressman Olver as I held a McCain sign opposite him, he was very friendly and personable, but that doesn’t make them any more right.

With the Red Sox World Series victories perhaps the fatalism can be shaken but it requires several things.

It requires the GOP to be willing to recruit candidates across the state.

It requires those candidates to be willing to put themselves out there.

It requires the voters to be willing to believe that change can happen.

and most of all it requires that voters WANT the change.

The entrenched interests sustain themselves with the current system, they will fight back but other than a stolen election it is the voters willingness to return these liberal year after year that does it.

Until we are willing to stop doing this to ourselves it will continue to happen, but eventually enough people will leave that our electoral count will be so insignificant as to be irrelevant.

About 50 years ago CBS ruled the roost with a series of shows that appealed to rural audiences such as Petticoat Junction, ,Beverly Hillbillies, Mayberry R.F.D., and Hogan’s Heroes. Around 1971 these shows were canceled in what was called the Rural purge. They were all still popular, all still successful but generally paned by urban critics.

These shows continue to make money in syndication.

Fast forward to 2009 and it looks like comedy central has decided CBS had a point:

Achmed the Dead Terrorist has been all but buried on Comedy Central. Press representatives for the network said on Tuesday that its hit series featuring that contentious puppet — not to mention Jeff Dunham, the man with a hand up his back — will not be picked up for a second season, confirming a report that appeared in The Hollywood Reporter.

Well it isn’t like the old days with only three networks, a specialty network like comedy central has to cater to the shows that bring in the absolute highest ratings not just red state stuff…oh wait:

The decision comes as a bit of a surprise given that “Jeff Dunham’s Very Special Christmas Special,” a performance shown on Comedy Central in 2008, is that channel’s most-viewed broadcast ever, drawing 6.6 million viewers, and the premiere of “The Jeff Dunham Show” was watched by 5.3 million viewers.

Well ok it had millions of viewers a whole lot more than the entire MSNBC lineup, but it’s not as if it was in response to the decisions of urban critics…oh wait again:

A widely read post on the Web site videogum.com declared, “‘The Jeff Dunham Show’ Is the Worst Thing in the Entire World.” In The New York Times, Neil Genzlinger wrote, “Offensiveness is a mutable thing, especially on television, where everything is interchangeable: a Lewis Black joke could be a Jay Leno joke could be a Jeff Dunham joke.”

So bottom line a niche network chooses to cancel a show that still brought in millions of viewers after critics pan it.

I guess comedy central isn’t immune to PC.

Update: Welcome Salon readers, I haven’t quite figured out what this post has to do with the article that linked me but welcome just the same. Feel free to check out my weekend Amazon Reviews. Read a Massachusetts Republican’s take on the Brown Coakley race. Check out my Dr. Who End of Time rant and read my poetic answer to Al Gore.

Was feeling a bit better today so we went off for a few frames of candlepin bowling. After some decidedly average bowling I dropped off the shoes and my wife went up to pay while I went to get the youngest at the pinball machine.

When the clerk took the sheet the first words out of his mouth to my wife were to inquire if I was a senior citizen and entitled to the discount. I’m 14 years away from that privilege.

Maybe that’s why I can’t find work, everyone thinks I’m ready to retire.

…when you get news like this:

This is the first time a conference for all of Israel’s Heads of Missions has been held. The idea is to facilitate direct dialogue with the country’s leaders, mutual updates on major diplomatic issues, and a discussion of action plans to deal with the challenges awaiting the State of Israel in the international arena in the coming year, including the Iranian threat.

Robert Stacy is pretty sure it’s on:

That which is unprecedented is never routine and seldom insignificant. If the current unrest in Iran doesn’t overthrow the Ahmadinejad regime . . . Well, put it this way: If you’re the night watchman at an Iranian nuclear facility, make sure you don’t miss a payment on your insurance premiums.

I can’t find a peep about it on Israellycool, I would have thought this would be of interest there.

Meanwhile Meryl Yourish thinks differently:

My take: It is to unify the message that Israel wants out there. Benjamin Netanyahu is the most PR-savvy Prime Minister Israel has had since Golda Meir.

Watch for the ambassadors to come back with a unified message on Israeli issues.

As for an attack on Iran: Seriously? Do you really think that Israel would recall all of her ambassadors on the eve of an attack on Iran and tell them it was going to happen? Because, gee, that’s the first thing I’d do if I were going to launch a surprise attack—tell a whole lot more people about it so they can leak it to the press.

I think it’s a win win no matter what. What we as bloggers think doesn’t matter, it’s what Iran the US and Europe will think. It could be more of a feint. Either way this is designed to provoke a reaction.

Various nations will almost certainly read things into this and make moves based upon it, these moves may aid Israel’s intelligence.

If Iran sees this as a prelude to an attack how will they respond? Will they redeploy security that is now being used to stop the growing protests? Will they attempt to move scientists and materials vital to their program? If so will they be exposed to attack or perhaps will they become detected due to movement?

Even if Israel was not planning an immediate strike a general time frame can be disseminated from such a meeting. No matter the strike is dated, this meeting will allow a coordinated message to be sent out by the various ambassadors when the time comes, if there is any kind of time frame for an attack key info can be disseminated in person, no diplomatic pouch, no electronic message to intercept etc.

No matter what, I have no doubt that Israel will act. The Jewish state is not going to allow another Shoah in the hopes that the rest of the world will like them better. Since there is no chance that America is going to act and since Europe has no power TO act even if it wants to it falls to Israel.

Logically the outcome is not in doubt, Israel has the best security force, the most efficient military for it’s size, superior intelligence and only American troops have better technology, and more direct experience in combat.

Historically the outcome is even less in doubt as the history of the Jewish state is the history of continued success.

From a Biblical viewpoint of course the outcome has no doubt provided Moses terms from the closing chapters of Deuteronomy have been met.

The real wildcard are the protests. Iran’s as a nation’s best bet to prevent an attack by Israel is the success of the protest movement. Ideally this is the best result for the entire world and would be in the best long term interests for Israel. In fact If I’m Israel I’m putting more effort into aiding the success of these protests than planning for air strikes. Such a success would break the back of Iranian puppets in Syria, Lebanon and in Hamas.

Could that be the “strike” that Israel is planning?

It’s open house -4 days which means it’s going to be relatively calm around here, but that is soon going to change.

We have picked up the various foodstuffs (except the braciole meat which I’ll grab on Friday), we are ready for Lasagna, Ham, Chicken Wings, Sauce and braciole (sometimes misspelled as brigole). We have a few rooms that need cleaning (Particularly Danny’s room) but the basic stuff is pretty close.

However dear as my wife is once we get to within 72 hours to the open house event panic starts to settle in. It might not even wait till tomorrow, but very soon we will have to be ready for some extreme cleaning and some serious pressue (and believe me even if we are done we won’t be). It’s not quite Captain Sobel from Band of Brothers but it will be close.

So as the antibiotics go over the hump I’m going to do my best to recuperate because after today it is crunch time.
Other than deep cleaning and my son’s

Apparently Big Finish has for whatever reason lost it’s license to continue to sell their Doctor Who Hardcover Book Series called Short Trips. On the 1st of the year they are required to destroy their entire stock.

So as they don’t want to be stuck with their books they are selling what they have left at pretty hefty discounts. Even with Shipping to the US each volume they have left sells for $9.77 each. (the compilation volume double sized is $20.35). Of the 29 volumes 19,23,26,27 and 28 are sold out from Big Finish. No word on what the remaining stock is for the rest.

So if you want some nice original Doctor Who tales before they become recycled material, here is your chance to score some at a deal.

After the 1st of the year or if you want a volume they are out of there is always Mike’s comics.

Now excuse me while I go back to bed.

I only have two thoughts on the subject:

1. It is now firmly established that no such attack can take place in the sight of passengers because they will not allow themselves to be killed with impunity.

2. We have reached a point where I actually had to read this story to the end to know it was satire.

…I had done some channel surfing so when I went back to the game and saw Manning out I assumed he was injured or shaken up. I kept waiting for them to show the replay of the hit that brought him out. It never came.

In New England we appreciate how bad a perfect season capped by a Superbowl loss can be but lets face facts.

There have been 43 Superbowl winners. There have been 2 perfect teams.

It would be like pulling a pitcher throwing a no hitter to save him from a playoff

The interest of the fans are the reason why the NFL is a profitable enterprise, they deserve more respect than this.

My review of the board game Munchkin Quest by Steve Jackson games is available at Amazon.com here.

If you enjoy the card game it is highly likely you will like the board game. We have played it twice at game night and the reviews are generally favorable.

Unlike the card game there are several new luck factors introduced, this may effect your enjoyment of the game depending on your temperament, but all and all it seems to be a winner, an expensive winner but a winner.

My review of the Big Finish Companion Chronicles 3.2 The Great Space Elevator staring Debra Wattling as Victoria Waterfield companion to the 2nd Doctor. is available at Amazon.com here.

A word of warning, it is unclear if this is set up for the right product on Amazon.com. I would suggest picking it up from Either Mike’s comics (best deal) or direct from Big finish

My review of the penultimate Tom Baker Doctor Who Episode: The Keeper of Traken is available at Amazon.com here.

The special features on this DVD are above avg for a Doctor Who DVD. The adventure is very much above par.

If you are not well versed in Dr. Who you might wonder about the scarf. Where are all the colors?

The last season he switched from a multi-colored scarf to a kind of three toned reddish one even longer than normal 18′-20′. Much darker in keeping with the entire tone of his last season.

Take a look at this excerpt from Loder’s review of the new movie:

Ritchie’s pandering to the action audience (an agenda no doubt reinforced by knock-’em-dead producer Joel Silver) strips Holmes’ world of its style. The director and his production designer, Sarah Greenwood, have taken considerable pains to conjure the dark cobbled streets and plush interiors of Victorian London — as shot by Philippe Rousselot, this is often a great-looking movie. But the sense of prickly wit and gracious restraint that was translated to the screen so well by the old Holmes films — with their indelible performances by Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce as Holmes and Watson — is buried in the over-amped frenzy of this new picture. The only real mystery here is how anyone involved could have thought that trashing such a classic would be a cool idea.

And now take a look at this quote from Nigel Bruce’s via IMDB concerning the classic Holmes movies he made with Basil Rathbone:

The stories we did were modernised but the characters of the famous detective and his biographer were kept more or less as originally written by Conan Doyle. Watson, however, in the films was made much more of a ‘comic’ character than he ever was in the books. This was with the object of introducing a little light relief. The doctor, as I played him, was a complete stooge for his brilliant friend and one whose intelligence was almost negligible. Many of the lovers of Conan Doyle must have been shocked, not by this caricature of the famous doctor but by seeing the great detective alighting from an aeroplane and the good doctor listening to his radio. To begin with, Basil and I were much opposed to the modernising of these stories but the producer, Howard Benedict, pointed out to us that the majority of youngsters who would see our pictures were accustomed to the fast-moving action of gangster pictures, and that expecting machine guns, police sirens, cars travelling at 80 miles an hour and dialogue such as ‘Put em up bud’, they would be bored with the magnifying glass, the hansom cabs, the cobblestones and the slow tempo of an era they never knew and a way of life with which they were completely unfamiliar.

What a difference a half century or so makes!

My Review of The Spider Woman the 7th entry in Basil Rathbone’s series of Sherlock Holmes adventures is available at Amazon.com here.

Holmes is always best when facing a foe worthy of him and this picture provides that sort of foe.

Given the choice between the special effects and gay overtones of the current movie or the dull tones of a B movie from the World War 2 era, give me WW2 every time.

Had a good time at my mother’s on Christmas Eve, one small snafu on Christmas Day (water overflowed from the tree got some of the books under the tree wet), but other than that is was very pleasant.

The 2nd day of Christmas (Boxing Day) is upon us and the countdown to the open house has begun. Seven days from today the open house will be on.

If you are a friend of mine and didn’t receive an invitation consider yourself invited. If you need a hard copy of one e-mail me or comment on the post.

As before if you are a reader of this blog I offer this challenge, if you can find my house and show up and introduce yourself as a reader you will be admitted and welcome.

The BBC decided to wise up concerning the Dr. Who special The end of Time.

Instead of a 3-6 month delay causing fans to play with proxy servers and or post copy after copy on youtube etc just so people outside of England could watch it, they scheduled it on BBC America with only an 18 hour delay from the base broadcast.

Incidentally as this will be the last story of the 10th doctor played by David Tennant and the introduction of the 11th doctor played by Matt Smith, this is a good choice for an entry point to the series.

If you read this blog at all you know I’m a big doctor who fan but being a graybeard I had no problem waiting till tonight to see the show, my 18 year old son being 18 thought otherwise so of course he watched using a proxy server and of course I watched it with him and of course my wife watched it when he offered to replay it.

I like it a lot more than The Nerd Blog did but from reading his review that wasn’t hard. (I disagree with him on the specials, I enjoyed them all even though Waters of Mars had a huge hole in it.) He had some points concerning the plot and the Masters “powers” but I very much liked the ending and am willing to withhold judgment until I see part two next week.

There was one thing however that annoyed me:

I presume it was meant as a plot device but the climatic moment of the show comes during a worldwide broadcast where president Obama is about to release his plan to end the worldwide recession. It’s a theme throughout the show.

I don’t know how long ago this was written, but the idea of a bunch of brits waiting for Barack Obama to save them strikes me as condescending to them. If I was a British subject I’d be insulted.

There is every probability that this was written just after his election and that Russell T. Davies was and/or is a member of the hopey-changey Obamacult. I suspect British actors are even farther left than Hollywood so it would be no surprise. It is also possible that he is making fun of said cult but I doubt it.

Alas the shooting schedule and the filming didn’t account for the crash and burn of international opinion of the president, it gives the episode an anachronistic quality will make many conservatives laugh at the reminder of those foolish messianic days.

My personal reaction was to think of this:

If you want to watch it to see what I mean, tune into BBC America tonight at 9 p.m. The two previous Doctor Who Specials: Planet of the Dead and Waters of Mars will be showed immediately before starting at 6:30 EST.

My review of Sylvester Stallone’s return as Rambo, is available at Amazon.com here.

One interesting note from the special features. They submitted their first cut of this movie for a rating fulling expecting to get an “NC-17” rating due to the military style violence. They were shocked to get the “R” so this is in theory the directors cut.

There is quite a bit of plot in here, you will enjoy it.

I was going to confession on day at St. Leo’s in Leominster when I noticed a poster next to the doors of the church with a complete list of the popes up to John Paul II. When you look at the popes one name jumped out at me. Pope Liberius, the 36th pope.

He was Pope from 352-366 and is unique compared to all the popes that preceded him. He was the first pope on that list who is NOT a Canonized saint.

Today that is not so odd. Of the popes who have lived in the last 500 years only two have been canonized St. Pius X (1903-14) and St. Pius V 1566-72. To find a saint before them you have to go all the way back to St. Gregory VII in the 11th century.

But Every pope before Liberius is canonized and quite a few after him, you have to go to Pope Anastasius II (#50) 130 years later before you find another that isn’t.

I don’t know about you but I’d be very embarrassed by that. The first one not to make the official cut? It’s like being Ronald Dionne only worse.

Now if you know your Catholic theology you know that may not matter, he certainly may be in heaven but the Church has no official position on that one way or the other.

But Come on! Maybe some ancient papal scholar can do some research and decide if it’s worth starting a cause for him.

This was the message on our Christmas bulletin distributed at mass today and tomorrow. It is reprinted with Fr. Bruso’s permission:

I remember the day I defeated the forces of darkness single handed. It was, as I recall, pretty easy.

I’m not one of those people who can remember everything that happened in my childhood. In fact, in my family I am notorious for getting the facts wrong when we gather to reminisce about the past, but this day I recall vividly, and everyone seems to agree that in this occasion, I got the facts right.

I was in the second grade at Sacred Heart School in Worcester. We were walking up to Vernon Hill from Cambridge Street, the whole gang of us who lived on “The Hill.” It was nearly Christmas and our sense of anticipation was at its height. Santa Claus would be coming soon to make his deliveries to every good little boy and girl, even Billy Spero, who wasn’t Catholic and went to public school. That was OK, my Nana told me, because even if Billy wasn’t Catholic, he went to the Albanian Church and they believed in Jesus, too.

You see we understood that there was an intimate connection between Santa Claus and Jesus. The real Santa Claus was Saint Nicholas, a bishop who loved Jesus and wanted everyone, even the littlest children, to know that Jesus was God’s greatest gift to the human race. If there was no Jesus, there would have been no Santa Claus.

Of course, St. Nicholas’ feast day was December 6 and in some countries in Europe, he brought presents to boys and girls on that day. In some countries, like (in) South America, he brought the presents on January 6. In the United States and in a lot of other countries , he came on Christmas Eve. That made perfect sense to us. He couldn’t be everywhere on the same night. We weren’t stupid.

Which leads me to Jackie Reidy, who thought maybe we were stupid. Jackie was older than I, perhaps in the fifth or sixth grade that year. He thought he knew everything.

We were on Fairfax Road, at the top of Diamond St. Hill. Almost home. A delivery truck was parked in front of a house. ON the side of the truck was a poster of Santa advertising cigarettes. That wasn’t a good thing to be advertising, I know, but it was over fifty years ago and we didn’t know any better then.

Jackie pointed at the picture on the truck and announced to us all:

“You know that there really is no Santa Claus, right?”

There was a stunned silence. I think Mary Lou Murphy, was only in Kindergarten, started to cry.

Someone had to defend the truth. someone had to stand up to this bully. I thought for a minute and then I stepped into the breach:

“Of course there is a Santa Claus,” I said in the full strength of my convictions. “My father doesn’t make that kind of money!”

A sigh of relief washed over the crowd. More than one voice joined in agreeing with me. All of us, from blue collar families, living in three decker tenements on Vernon Hill, knew that there was no extra money in our houses. Most of our fathers worked two jobs just to pay the bills. Yet every Christmas morning, our living room floors were covered with Santa’s bounty. There wasn’t even enough room under the tree for all that he left us. And there was more fudge than even I could eat.

No Santa Claus? What nonsense!

And that was the day I defeated the forces of darkness single handed.

Whenever we deny hope, whenever we shatter dreams, whenever we choose darkness over light, we deny the eternal Hope who is Jesus Christ. All of our traditions at Christmas should point us more clearly to Jesus Christ the Savior. It is His birth we celebrate. He is the greatest gift the world can ever know.

When Santa leaves us presents, he also leaves us hope: our hope in Jesus Christ, our hope for a better world, our hope which no one can take from us.

Merry Christmas! Buon Natale!

Merry Christmas to all.

1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that the whole world should be enrolled.

2 This was the first enrollment, when Quirinius was governor of Syria.

3 So all went to be enrolled, each to his own town.

4 And Joseph too went up from Galilee from the town of Nazareth to Judea, to the city of David that is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David,

5 to be enrolled with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child.

6 While they were there, the time came for her to have her child,

7 and she gave birth to her firstborn son. 3 She wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.

8 Now there were shepherds in that region living in the fields and keeping the night watch over their flock.

9 The angel of the Lord appeared to them and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were struck with great fear.

10 The angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.

11 For today in the city of David a savior has been born for you who is Messiah and Lord.

12 And this will be a sign for you: you will find an infant wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.”

13 And suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying:

14 “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels went away from them to heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go, then, to Bethlehem to see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.”

16 So they went in haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger.

17 When they saw this, they made known the message that had been told them about this child.

18 All who heard it were amazed by what had been told them by the shepherds.

19 And Mary kept all these things, reflecting on them in her heart.

20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, just as it had been told to them.

God bless all here.

I’m sure Sheldon’s mother would approve.

1 DaH ‘oH qaSta’ Daq chaH jajmey, vetlh a decree mejta’ pa’ vo’ Caesar Augustus vetlh Hoch the qo’ should taH enrolled.

2 vam ghaHta’ the wa’Dich enrollment chenmoHta’ ghorgh Quirinius ghaHta’ governor vo’ Syria.

3 Hoch mejta’ Daq enroll themselves, Hoch Daq Daj ghaj veng.

4 Joseph je mejta’ Dung vo’ Galilee, pa’ vo’ the veng vo’ Nazareth, Daq Judea, Daq the veng vo’ David, nuq ghaH ja’ Bethlehem, because ghaH ghaHta’ vo’ the tuq je qorDu’ vo’ David;

5 Daq enroll himself tlhej Mary, ‘Iv ghaHta’ pledged Daq taH married Daq ghaH as be’nal, taH pregnant.

6 ‘oH qaSta’, qaStaHvIS chaH were pa’, vetlh the jaj ghajta’ ghoS vetlh ghaH should nob birth.

7 ghaH qempu’ vo’ Daj firstborn puqloD, je ghaH wrapped ghaH Daq baghmoHwI’ vo’ cloth, je laid ghaH Daq a feeding trough, because pa’ ghaHta’ ghobe’ room vaD chaH Daq the inn.

8 pa’ were shepherds Daq the rap Hatlh staying Daq the yotlh, je keeping watch Sum ram Dung chaj flock.

9 yIlegh, an Duy vo’ the joH Qampu’ Sum chaH, je the batlh vo’ the joH shone around chaH, je chaH were terrified.

10 The Duy ja’ta’ Daq chaH, “ yImev taH vIp, vaD yIlegh, jIH qem SoH QaQ news vo’ Dun Quch nuq DichDaq taH Daq Hoch the ghotpu.

11 vaD pa’ ghaH bogh Daq SoH, vam jaj, Daq the veng vo’ David, a toDwI’, ‘Iv ghaH Christ the joH.

12 vam ghaH the sign Daq SoH: SoH DichDaq tu’ a ghu wrapped Daq strips vo’ cloth, lying Daq a feeding trough.”

13 Suddenly, pa’ ghaHta’ tlhej the Duy a qevmey vo’ the heavenly army praising joH’a’, je ja’ta’,

14 “ batlh Daq joH’a’ Daq the highest, Daq tera’ roj, QaQ DichDaq toward loDpu’.”

15 ‘oH qaSta’, ghorgh the Duy”a’pu’ mejta’ DoH vo’ chaH Daq the sky, vetlh the shepherds ja’ta’ wa’ Daq another, “Let’s jaH Daq Bethlehem, DaH, je legh vam Doch vetlh ghajtaH qaSta’, nuq the joH ghajtaH chenmoHta’ Sovta’ Daq maH.”

16 chaH ghoSta’ tlhej haste, je tu’ta’ both Mary je Joseph, je the ghu ghaHta’ lying Daq the feeding trough.

17 ghorgh chaH leghta’ ‘oH, chaH publicized widely the ja’ta’ nuq ghaHta’ jatlhpu’ Daq chaH about vam puq.

18 Hoch ‘Iv Qoyta’ ‘oH wondered Daq the Dochmey nuq were jatlhpu’ Daq chaH Sum the shepherds.

19 ‘ach Mary polta’ Hoch Dochvammey sayings, pondering chaH Daq Daj tIq.

20 The shepherds cheghta’, glorifying je praising joH’a’ vaD Hoch the Dochmey vetlh chaH ghajta’ Qoyta’ je leghpu’, just as ‘oH ghaHta’ ja’ta’ chaH.

As you might guess this is taken from this site.

After all this story is dated Dec 23.

A conservative activist and Illinois comptroller candidate was escorted from the Illinois State Capitol building Wednesday when he tried to remove a sign put up by an atheist group.

William J. Kelly announced Tuesday that he planned to take down the sign put up by the Freedom from Religion Foundation, and on Wednesday, he tried to make good on his plan.

The story has this interesting note:

For the second year in a row, the Capitol also has an aluminum Festivus pole commemorating the fictional holiday created in “Seinfeld.”

I guess he can claim to have been acting in the best traditions of Festivus, then again the police that took him away can say the same thing, Feats of Strength you know.

I was watching one of those little 30 minute films on Catholic TV this morning showing the Christmas story (I think it was El Salvador produced by Fr. Patrick Payton’s Family Theatre, he of “The Family that prays’ together stays together” fame.). The narration was Bing Crosby and Frankie Avalon appeared in studio after with Fr Payton talking about it.

While I was watching the show, something hit me right across the face.

If you take a look at Scripture there is a difference between the way Mary and Joseph communicate with the messengers of the Lord.

Gabriel appears to Mary directly, she sees and hears him and immediately obeys, the angel pays her homage and says the words that will become the Hail Mary. Mary being immaculate, obeys “behold I am the handmaiden of the Lord…” even knowing that the law could condemn her to death and at the very least she will be shamed. If you think people can be gossips now, consider how it must have been with no TV, Radio, books (scrolls) and literacy rare, what else was there to do BUT gossip? It must have been nasty.

Meanwhile we have Joseph. How does he he get his information? From Dreams and from what Mary tells her.

The Gospel is not explicit as to what he thought but put yourself in his place. Your betrothed has turned up pregnant and she tells you about the Angel of the Lord etc. If you don’t turn her in then your own sin is suspected. Then you have your dream.

The dream gives you the excuse you want to let things be but deep inside the question turns in your head. You KNOW you didn’t touch her, was it really a dream from God, or are you just fooling yourself. Is it a test of faith? I’m a carpenter not a prophet? Am I another Amos?

You take her to the house, you follow the rules of the census and you end up in a stable in Bethlehem all the while doing your best to be a good husband ignoring the elephant in the room.

The Baby is born, a torrent of emotions are going through your wife and yourself …

…and then the Shepherds appear…

…they come out of nowhere. They give homage, in that moment, they confirm that all you have done was right. Even better they tell their story to everyone (Luke 2: 8-18) what do the Gossips say now?

You are Joseph, how relieved are you at this point? Remember unlike Peter he didn’t have years of miracles in front of his face when he denied Christ, he only had the word of a teenage girl and a dream. There would have been little cost to him if he condemned Mary. Yet he didn’t and this moment was that ultimate reward. He passed the ultimate test of faith with flying colors.

A lot of times we consider St. Joseph an afterthought, he deserves better.

Update: I can’t believe I made that spelling mistake corrected, no wonder Tucker hasn’t called.

Q: Why will the president neither address nor remove Kevin Jennings from his safe school Czar position?

Gay activists are already very upset at the president’s inaction on several fronts that they have demanded action on. The White house doesn’t take this action because said actions are political losers. Every Democrat in congress knows this or they would have taken action on these items years ago.

The White House needs to pacify this group that supplies cash without actually taking action. In Kevin Jennings they have found the perfect vehicle for this goal.

Gay activists know they have been played for suckers, but they also understand that the Jennings matter is potentially more dangerous than any other to them.

This person has been lionized and held up as an example by their community, so much so that he got the White House appointment. However like the University of East Anglia Scientists (Go Polar Bears!) they also know what the result of the widespread publicity of the GLSEN agenda would be. Attitudes have changed over the decades but not THAT much.

They understand that any acknowledgment of the Jennings scandal puts their entire agenda out before the public in a way that is impossible to address in a positive light. And unlike some national agenda it is a local agenda, something that a state rep or even a city council deals with. That’s something that can people if roused can do something about from the bottom up. It would cause rollbacks on the state and local level faster than an overstocked WalMart.

The White House understands this and by standing behind Jennings they give the radical Gay community what they need rather than what they want without political cost…at least for now.

As long as the media continues to use the same investigative prowess it used on the John Edwards story the White House can duck it and play this game. Since the MSM has embrace the Jennings agenda it is in their own best interest to play it down too. So don’t expect it to crossover to the MSM anytime soon.

Thus Jennings serves a vital interest for the president. He keeps the Gay community in check simply by staying right where he is.

This is the reality and unfortunately the yeoman work of Jim Hoff is unlikely to change it.

Q: How do we know the following take from Bill Kristol is correct:

First: the reaction to the deal-making. One friend e-mails, “uncharacteristically, I’m getting calls from relatives who want to talk about all the unseemly deals being cut to get the health bill through…that seems to have hit a nerve, as much as the price-tag.” That’s my sense too.

The belief that the fix is in is so contrary to the American concept of fair play that it’s going to make a huge difference. Sarah Palin closed her facebook post today with this:

The administration’s promises of transparency and bipartisanship have been broken one by one. This entire process has been defined by midnight votes on weekends, closed-door meetings with industry lobbyists, and payoffs to politicians willing to sell their principles for sweetheart deals. Is it any wonder that Americans are so disillusioned with their leaders in Washington?

This is about politics, not health care. Americans don’t want this bill. Americans don’t like this bill. Washington has stopped listening to us. But we’re paying attention, and 2010 is coming.

When an 85 year old lifelong democrats expresses an intention to go to City Hall to change their registration over this in the bluest of blue states that means trouble.

This is going to implode this congress.

Our friends on the left continue to call it the “lie of the year” but for some reason these non-existent death panels are being protected by specific and extraordinary legislative language:

“it shall not be in order in the senate or the house of representatives to consider any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that would repeal or otherwise change this subsection.”

What does that section deal with? The Independent Medicare Advisory Board. These guys are going to determine what will be covered and what will not, who will get treatment and who will not. Dare I say it a “death panel”?

Sarah Palin dares to say it. Explicitly:

In other words, Democrats are protecting this rationing “death panel” from future change with a procedural hurdle. You have to ask why they’re so concerned about protecting this particular provision. Could it be because bureaucratic rationing is one important way Democrats want to “bend the cost curve” and keep health care spending down?

The Congressional Budget Office seems to think that such rationing has something to do with cost. In a letter to Harry Reid last week, CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf noted (with a number of caveats) that the bill’s calculations call for a reduction in Medicare’s spending rate by about 2 percent in the next two decades, but then he writes the kicker:

“It is unclear whether such a reduction in the growth rate could be achieved, and if so, whether it would be accomplished through greater efficiencies in the delivery of health care or would reduce access to care or diminish the quality of care.”

Though Nancy Pelosi and friends have tried to call “death panels” the “lie of the year,” this type of rationing – what the CBO calls “reduc[ed] access to care” and “diminish[ed] quality of care” – is precisely what I meant when I used that metaphor.

Amazing how this stuff that doesn’t exist keeps being propped up by the democrats in legislation. Her willingness to stand out front and say these things aloud is the primary reason why she is so hated and why she must be destroyed.

BTW look at google news, isn’t it odd that a a readers survey of a web site is being trumpeted as fact in paper after paper?

Here is a story I never expected to be reading:

Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter has apologized to the American Jewish community for ‘stigmatizing Israel’ and asked for forgiveness for his actions, the JTA reported on Monday.

“We must recognize Israel’s achievements under difficult circumstances, even as we strive in a positive way to help Israel continue to improve its relations with its Arab populations, but we must not permit criticisms for improvement to stigmatize Israel,” Carter wrote in a letter to the JTA.

“As I would have noted at Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, but which is appropriate at any time of the year, I offer an Al Het for any words or deeds of mine that may have done so,” Carter wrote, referring to the prayer said on Yom Kippur in which Jews ask God for forgiveness for any sins.

As you know I’m a big fan of confession, but I’ve never expected this one.

Who says miracles can’t happen on this magic day of Festivus?

I guess he wanted to preempt the traditional airing of grievances but I as said last year, I have teenagers, every day is for the airing of grievances.

Happy Festivus to all who celebrate it and have a nice day to everyone else.

Update: I’m no expect of Jewish Theology but I know a bit about Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular. I’m a bit bothered by the reactions on this thread where I found the Carter story. Remember the rules:

I would remind all Christians of this little prayer that you likely pray every day:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and do not subject us to the final test, but deliver us from the evil one. Matt 6:9-13 emphasis mine

The next two verses are even more blunt:

If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions. Matt 6:14,15

Every time you say the Our Father (of you prefer the term The Lord’s Prayer) and you choose not to forgive you are condemning yourself. Christ was very explicit here. He meant to be. This is not an optional doctrine. These are the rules.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, the presence of one’s enemies will not make hell any more bearable.

Update 2: Speaking of grievances

Isn’t that nice. Oh, in a not-at-all related story, Jimmy Carter’s grandson is running for Congress {incorrect see update 3 DTG} in a Georgia district that has a significant (at least for Georgia) Jewish population.

“Hey, I am really sorry for all that anti-Israel stuff I have been doing for years and years. I am also really sorry that I left that Holocaust thing out of my book on Israel and all the other things. Yeah, really sorry about that. Have you met my Grandson Jason, he is running for Congress and he really likes Jews.”

That gives an interesting twist to the story.

Update 3: Jumping in Pools says he is running for state senate rather than congress, Creative Minority report’s point remains. My thanks for the heads up and the correction. He did however leave his comment informing me of this at this post on St. Joseph instead of here.

…so maybe you could drop the moral superiority business on the most Republican war ever fought that you had no part in fighting or winning 145 years ago.

Kathleen Parker pushed that smear herself back in August during an especially insulting segment on why Palin fares well in the south while Obama doesn’t, but it’s a treat to see it paired this time with a blind assertion that the disintegrating Democrats are the true party o’ the people.

In fairness I shouldn’t say “we” since my ancestors were all in Sicily but I’m a Massachusetts man and the monument in the center of my city is a Union monument and the graves on the hill are full of Union dead, so I’ll say “we” with that stipulation.

The south is part of the union. If we didn’t want the south in the union we would have let them go. If you are looking for bigots, you’d better pull out a mirror.

I don’t know but I have a sneaking suspicion that what is not said in this story is even more significant than what is:

Mayor Lisa Wong directed the city solicitor to hire a consultant to investigate a wide-ranging array of issues inside the police department, according to a letter dated Sept. 14, 2009.

what kind of issues?

Included in the list is “the use or misuse of internal disciplinary personnel files,” as well as the “thoroughness and effectiveness of, internal affairs investigations of the conduct of police officers.”

She also said the investigation should focus on “to what extent officers, especially higher ranking officers, have by action or inaction interfered with or otherwise impeded the effective management and administration of the department by the Chief of Police,” and “whether the conduct of any officer violated the Police Department Rules and Regulations, the Police Manual, and/or the General Orders of Policies and Procedures of the Fitchburg Police Department.”

I’ve talked about the problems our city has with gangs and drugs. Is there more than meets the eye? We will find out.