Parting ShotSomewhere a Republican is missing his cock:
Photo ripped from Gawker.
...hand-held device supplied to U.S. soldiers by the Pentagon, allows them to communicate hundreds of prerecorded Arabic phrases to Iraqis they encounter in the war zone. "The device, which looks like an oversize Palm Pilot with a speaker and a microphone on top, breaks into Arabic when it hears an equivalent phrase in English spoken by a user whose voice it recognizes," reports the New York Times Magazine. "Like an electronic parrot, the Phraselator may not be much of a conversationalist and can lack charm -- sample phrases include 'Not a step farther,' 'Put your hands on the wall' and 'Everyone stop talking' -- but its boosters claim that because the phrases are prerecorded by native speakers and not computer-generated, the monologues have 'a more natural feel.' The Phraselator is marketed as 'a complete solution for cross-cultural awareness.'"
Right ... but there's just one little thing missing from that "complete solution." While U.S. soldiers can broadcast orders across the cultural divide, they have no idea what Iraqis are saying back.
"Its creators at the Pentagon-financed company VoxTec admit that even the new model, the P2, has a drawback: it is still just a 'one-way' translation device. In other words, it phraselates perfectly well from English into Arabic (or any of the 59 other 'target languages' it has mastered so far), but the device is no better at understanding foreign languages than the Americans who are wielding it. So the Phraselator allows occupiers to issue commands, but it does not help them comprehend any of what the occupied may have to say in response."
Apparently VoxTec also envisions a broader market of Americans who would be perfectly happy to get lost in phrase-lation; despite the device's current limitation, "VoxTec is planning to roll out a consumer version soon, so it won't be long before American tourists will be able to make demands and deliver orders in foreign languages without having to learn a single word of them."
George W. Bush became our 43 president following one of the closest elections in American history.Only the second man to follow in the presidential footsteps of his father, Bush developed a political philosophy known as "compassionate conservatism" that encouraged limited government, individual responsability, and strong family values. His common-sense approch successfully led him from governor of Texas to the White House. Most importantly, he will be remembered as a strong and decisive leader in his "War against Terrorism" and the "Enduring Freedom" military campaign.Bush's words evoke resolve and patriotism: "Whether we bring our enemies to justice or justice to our enemies, justice will be done!"
"I don't know what the facts are but somebody's certainly going to sit down with him and find out what he knows that they may not know, and make sure he knows what they know that he may not know, and that's a good thing. I think it's a very constructive exchange," Rumsfeld said of the questioner.
A former platoon leader in Iraq and founder of an advocacy group for troops called Operation Truth said Rumsfeld's comments in Kuwait showed he was out of touch with reality.
"Mr. Rumsfeld really doesn't understand the reality on the ground that the troops are facing," said Paul Rieckhoff.
"All he keeps giving us is excuses. We don't want excuses, we want solutions," he added.
Late night comedians have seized on the issue as well, and comic Jay Leno poked fun at Rumsfeld for saying that armor did not always provide protection. "Then he got in his armored car and left," said Leno to laughs from the audience.
As part of the intelligence reform bill passed Wednesday, Congress added the lighters to the long list of banned items, including scissors, pen knives and box cutters.
Dorgan cited FBI reports that would-be "shoe-bomber" Richard Reid would have been able to ignite his explosive and blow up a trans-Atlantic jetliner three years ago if he'd brought a butane lighter with him.
Memo to John Kerry voters:
It's time to peel those Kerry bumper stickers off the backs of your Volvos. It's also time for you - or your butler - to take down the campaign yard signs from in front of your mansions.
What part of ``It's over, you lost!'' do you pukes not understand?
Around here, before Nov. 2, Kerry signs outnumbered Bush signs by a 10-1 margin. It's been five weeks since Kerry did a Dukakis, and now the ratio is maybe 20-1. Carpenters for Kerry, Firefighters for Kerry, Featherbedding Pinky Ring Union Thugs for Kerry . . .
Of course, Bush voters had good reason to get rid of their bumper stickers. It reduced the chances of having their vehicles keyed in a parking lot by a Featherbedding Pinky Ring Union Thug for Kerry.
I saw two loser Kerry stickers yesterday on a blue Chevy - amazing, isn't it, that a Kerry voter would be caught dead in such an unfashionable Detroit car? The sticker on top was your basic ``John Kerry,'' and the bottom one said ``Kerry Edwards,'' with an American flag between the names. And above that, in italics:
``It's Up to Women . . . Vote!''
And so they did. For George Bush.
But traditional bumper-sticker etiquette requires that if you were right and everyone else was wrong, then you wait a few months before you print up some new bumper stickers. In 1972, Massachusetts was the only state to vote against Richard Nixon. Then Watergate blew up. Anyone remember those famous 1973-74 bumper stickers:
``Don't Blame Me, I'm from Massachusetts.''
All these years you limousine liberals got by establishing your Beautiful People credentials with a simple oval sticker on the back windshield that said MV, as in Martha's Vineyard. You exhorted everyone to Redefeat Bush. You asked your fellow motorists to Visualize World Peace and to Think Globally, Act Locally.
But suddenly, those traditional ways of announcing ``I Don't Have a Real Job'' aren't good enough anymore.
For God's sake, exit stage left. Move on (to coin a phrase). Surely there's some other way you can express your disgust. Find a Christmas tree on public property and then call the ACLU. Have an abortion. Get Michael Moore's autograph.
But lose the bumper sticker that says ``A Stronger America.''
I saw another one yesterday. Next to the Kerry sticker was a purple one that said, ``Pro-Family. Pro-Faith. Pro-Choice.''
Now that's Pro-Found.
Apparently this phenomenon spans all of blue-state America. A couple of days ago, the Minneapolis paper found a bunch of whack jobs who refuse to remove their Kerry yard signs. One was identified as ``a pet nanny,'' another as a ``filmmaker,'' and a third as a ``peace activist.''
Of course, these are, no doubt, some of the same people who think that Paul Wellstone was murdered. But still, they got beat fair and square, by 4 million votes. Why can't they get over it?
...What the party needs is someone who can act as a focal point for the progressive energy of liberal Democrats and redirect it like a laser beam at the weakness and hypocrisy of the Republican Party. For better or worse, Howard Dean is the best person the Democrats have for filling that role.
Does it matter that party insiders don't really like him? That seems like a bonus to me. After all, it is these same insiders who have driven the Democratic Party into the ground. And as for the "Dean Scream," the best way to neutralize that kind of weapon is to morph it from an insult into a battle cry. Let that be the sound that causes the GOPers to wake up sweating in the middle of the night.
DUBYA: There's a lot of work to be done. We've made a lot of progress in protecting our country, and there's more work to be done. And this administration is committed to doing it.
REPORTER: Mr. President --
DUBYA: Do you want to call on somebody?
PRESIDENT MUSHARRAF: I know that -- I know that you're trying your best to address the issue of terrorism all over the world, and obviously, the most important part is to protect your own, the United States from terrorism.
DUBYA: Actually, I wasn't asking you necessarily to answer the question; I was asking you to call on somebody from the Pakistani press. I'm sorry. You don't have to answer every question they ask me. I would advise you not answering those questions.
-- Dubya ceding control and then seizing control right back again in a matter of seconds. In case you're keeping score at home, the only words President Musharaff got to utter after this exchange were a three-word rejoinder and "Thank you very much", White House, Dec. 4, 2004
"STEPHANOPOULOS: Now you're a doctor. Do you believe that tears and sweat can transmit HIV?
FRIST: I don't know. I can tell you --
STEPHANOPOULOS: You don’t know?
FRIST: I can tell you things like, like --
STEPHANOPOULOS: Wait. Let me stop you there. You don't know that, you believe that tears and sweat might be able to transmit AIDS?
FRIST: Yeah, no, I can tell you that HIV is not very transmissible as an element, like compared to smallpox, compared to the flu, it's not.
STEPHANOPOULOS: ...Let me just clear this up though, do you or do you not believe that tears and sweat can transmit HIV?
FRIST: It would be very hard...for tears and sweat to -- I mean, you can get virus in tears and sweat. But in terms of the degree of infecting somebody, it would be very hard."
In the latest instance of something that any news organization would consider "fair use" arousing the ire of corporate attorneys, veteran blogger Jason Kottke, who'd long followed the saga of Jeopardy wiz Ken Jennings, has drawn the wrath of lawyers from Sony. Kottke had posted an audio clip of Jennings' loss, then took it down after he heard from the lawyers, and replaced it with a transcript. The lawyers were still not happy -- although they don't seem to have gone after the Washington Post for publishing something quite similar. Maybe the thinking is, Kottke isn't a "journalist," he's "just" a blogger. If so, then we're in for a bumpy ride, because the old line between journalists and non-journalists is now written in invisible ink, the border's unguarded, and hordes are streaming across.
President Bush is awarding the nation's highest civilian honor to three men central to his Iraq policy, the White House announced.
Bush has chosen retired Gen. Tommy Franks, who oversaw combat in Afghanistan and the initial invasion of Iraq, former CIA Director George Tenet and former Iraq administrator L. Paul Bremer III to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
There is no doubt that the regime of Saddam Hussein possesses weapons of mass destruction. And . . . as this operation continues, those weapons will be identified, found, along with the people who have produced them and who guard them.
Gen. Tommy Franks
March 22, 2003
"George, how confident are you?" the president asked Tenet, in an exchange depicted in Bob Woodward's book "Plan of Attack."
"Don't worry, it's a slam-dunk," Tenet said.
"We paid a big price for not stopping it because it established an atmosphere of lawlessness," Bremer said. "We never had enough troops on the ground."
Former U.S. presidential candidate, Senator John Kerry (D-MA), lays flowers on the casket of U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Dimitrios Gavriel during his military funeral at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington DC, December 2, 2004. Gavriel, from Haverhill, Massachusetts, died November 19 while fighting in Al Anbar Province in Iraq (news - web sites) and his funeral is the 99th 'Operation Iraqi Freedom' funeral at Arlington National Cemetery. REUTERS/Jason Reed
"Our culture, how we know it today, is under attack from every angle," Allen said in a press conference Tuesday.
Allen said that if his bill passes, novels with gay protagonists and college textbooks that suggest homosexuality is natural would have to be removed from library shelves and destroyed.
"I guess we dig a big hole and dump them in and bury them," he said.
Throughout its pages are fornication (the heroine with her late sister's husband), incest (half brother knocks up half sister), adultery (the heroine, with her first husband's friend), contraception (by the wed and the unwed) and lesbian couplings (the heroine's sister and an older woman). And incidentally, lynchings, dogicide, cattle theft and robber-baronism.
"Google News is a great site, offering an extremely useful search function that finds news stories published on the Internet within the past 30 days. The other delightful thing about it is its automatically generated homepage headlines. If you want to know what the top stories are, you're better off going to a news site that has an actual human editor (at this point we'd be remiss if we didn't plug The Wall Street Journal Online), but some of the stuff that makes its way through Google's algorithms can be a source of high hilarity.
"Example: A left-wing site called Axis of Logic published a satirical (though unfunny) article yesterday titled 'Canadians Authorities Arrest U.S. President Bush on War Charges,' and it ended up as Google's top story. Seriously."
Drinkers might want to keep a clear head when ordering a martini at New York's historic Algonquin Hotel or they might pay $10,000 for that cold sip.
The landmark hotel, where famed wit Dorothy Parker and fellow literary lights at the Round Table imbibed, offers a $10,000 martini, complete with a loose diamond at the bottom.
No one has ordered one yet, in the martini's first week on the menu, but the hotel hopes some romantic soul will buy one any day now.
The drink is designed to fit with tradition at the Algonquin, where Round Table members including Parker, writer Robert Benchley, playwright George S. Kaufman and "The New Yorker" magazine founder Harold Ross gathered regularly.
Today, Parker's ode to the martini adorns hotel napkins: "I love a martini -- but two at the most. Three I'm under the table; Four, I'm under the host."
Parker's response to the $10,000 martini might be mixed, the manager conceded.
"I think she would like the idea so long as she'd get to drink it," he said. "I don't think she'd care about the diamond, but she'd care about the martini."