This is a week after the same show had a staged scene with a canoe in ankle deep water. Again the MSM shows its true colors. Today won't have any reputation left if it even has one now.
Thank you to Politcal Teen who has the video also.
The Dolphins are playing their game tonight rather than on Sunday. This is due to Hurricane Wilma. This is the team's first Friday night game in 22 years but one of a half dozen times in last 12 years that Miami has had to re-schedule a game due to weather.
My opinion is the short week will affect both teams equally. Miami is going to get thrashed also, my prediction Kansas City 34, Miami 14.
*- The game will be broadcast on television in Kansas City, Miami, West Palm Beach and Ft. Myers television markets. But as James Joyner and the Tampa Tribune notes, the game won't be on NFL Sunday ticket live tonight or broadcast in the Tampa or Orlando areas. The NFL really needs to re-vamp their television rules.
*- How pathetic is it when a team that traded away a 2nd round pick to get a player have to turn around barely a year later by giving away a 6th to get rid of the same player. That's what Miami did the other day to unload AJ Feeley. A 6th round pick and Feeley for a QB that's never played a down in the NFL and is not likely to do so this year either. Why not release Feeley out right or just keep him to the end of the year. Just another dumb personel(or pardon the pun a lemon.) decision by Miami, and it looks like nothing has changed but the names of management for this team.
*- Houston Astros vs Chicago White Sox in the World Series. Two very dissimilar ballparks in my old Strat-O-Matic days. A lefty homer park vs. a Righty homer park. Creative managing and lineup juggling would be needed.
But we're talking real-life not a board game. I pick the White Sox in 6.
*- The Golf tours are winding down. The LPGA is off this week after seeing Annika stomp the field last weekend. They play in South Korea a week from now, then Japan before coming back to the US for the final two weeks of the year. Four weeks to the ADT Championship here in West Palm Beach. I will be attending.
This weekend's PGA tour stop is in Orlando. Tiger Woods is playing but Hunter Haas is leading so far. So there will be golf for me to watch this weekend.
My mother-in-law(She lives with us) had a cat scan done some time back. Today we get a bill in t he mail. For $0.00. Why do hospitals or medical facilities mail out bills like this? I get 2 or 3 of them a year at least. One of life's mysteries, like why there are interstate highways in Hawaii.
Fellow Florida Blogger Bright&Early is beginning to ask that question. It seems we're stuck in a time loop with Wilma always three days away from Florida.
The wait could prove to be good for Florida. Wilma stalling over the Yucatan is taking away most of the storm's punch. It should only arrive here in Florida as a Category 1 or 2 storm. That is alot less destructive than the original forecasts were two days ago.
On the other hand all the forecasting computer models have Wilma coming to Florida. One way or another some parts of this state or in for a destructive storm. Please pray for all the residents of this state.
Because of the storm, many people are re-arranging their schedules. That includes the Miami Dolphins. They will be playing their game originally scheduled for Sunday, tonight instead. I'll have my weekly prediction up later.
Overall the waiting on Wilma game continues here in Lantana. I'll post more updates here as news happens.
Today's winner is Michael Drennon. Mr. Drennon held up a bank in Bensalem PA last Friday. Guess what he used for the note for the bank teller? An old paycheck stub with his name and address on it!
BENSALEM, Pa. - A note handed to a bank teller demanding $20, $50 and $100 bills "the quicker the better" was written on a pay stub that led police to a robbery suspect even though the name and address were crossed out with a marker.
"It wasn't a huge forensic undertaking," Steven Moran, Bensalem director of public safety, said Wednesday. "We just put it under a light."
The FBI charged Michael Drennon, 26, of Philadelphia, with robbing the Wachovia Bank in Bensalem on Friday. Drennon, who had been living in a halfway house while on probation, was being held at the federal detention center in Philadelphia pending a hearing scheduled for Friday. It couldn't immediately be determined if he had an attorney.
The man who slipped the teller the note Friday left the bank with about $2,500, authorities said. Police said Drennon had about $1,800 on him when he was arrested
Some news from Sweden. Do parents ever think when naming their children? Specifically how it would feel to be called by their name. In this case, I don't think the parents gave much consideration to that. Giving a child an odd name is almost like cursing them to have other children pick on them or tease them.
KALMAR, , Sweden, Oct. 20 (UPI) -- A couple in Sweden who uses computers a lot have chosen to name their firstborn son Google, after the world-dominant search engine.
Elias Kai, who is Lebanese, told The Local newspaper he's a "great fan" of the search engine, but the name means more to him than that.
"The word 'googol' means 1 followed by 100 zeros, and I want my son to have lots of friends -- I want him to be social, so the name also symbolizes this."
The Swedish tax authority, known for being iffy about allowing unusual baby names, did not stand in their way after the birth on Sept. 12.
"They just thought it was funny," Elias told the newspaper.
And so did management at the Silicone Valley, Calif.-based software company.
But the leap from voluntary guidelines to questionable law could prove more of a shock to the public than the Taser-related deaths that spurred action toward standards and training. The questions are as basic as the legislation's lack of clear requirements regarding the civilians to whom the electric gun increasingly is being marketed. Tallahassee could make matters worse once lobbyists for the various interests enter the mix.
The problem is that there's no telling what might end up in the final bill. There's also no compelling reason why lawmakers, rather than professional law enforcers at FDLE and the Standards and Training Commission, should establish uniformity for Florida.
There is one compelling reason. Our legislators make the laws, not law enforcement. Our elected officials have the right to make the law here, get over it Palm Beach Post.
MADRID, Spain - A judge has issued an international arrest warrant for three U.S. soldiers whose tank fired on a Baghdad hotel during the Iraq war, killing a Spanish journalist and a Ukrainian cameraman, a court official said Wednesday.
Judge Santiago Pedraz issued the warrant for Sgt. Shawn Gibson, Capt. Philip Wolford and Lt. Col. Philip de Camp, all from the U.S. 3rd Infantry, which is based in Fort Stewart, Ga.
Jose Couso, who worked for the Spanish television network Telecinco, died April 8, 2003, after a U.S. army tank crew fired a shell on Hotel Palestine in Baghdad where many journalists were staying to cover the war.
Reuters cameraman Taras Protsyuk, a Ukrainian, also was killed.
Pedraz had sent two requests to the United States — in April 2004 and June 2005 — to have statements taken from the suspects or to obtain permission for a Spanish delegation to quiz them. Both went unanswered.
He said he issued the arrest order because of a lack of judicial cooperation from the United States regarding the case.
The warrant "is the only effective measure to ensure the presence of the suspects in the case being handled by Spanish justice, given the lack of judicial cooperation by U.S. authorities," the judge said in the warrant.
The Pentagon had no immediate information and said it was looking into it.
U.S. officials have insisted that the soldiers believed they were being shot at when they opened fire.
Following the Palestine incident, then-Secretary of State Colin Powell said a review of the incident found that the use of force was justified.
In late 2003, the National Court, acting on a request from Couso's family, agreed to consider filing criminal charges against three members of the tank crew.
Fort Stewart spokeswoman Jennifer Scales said the three no longer are assigned to Fort Stewart or the 3rd Infantry Division.
De Camp, who is now an adjunct mathematics professor at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va., said three investigations into the incident — two military investigations and one by the Committee to Protect Journalists — had exonerated all three men.
"We had no clue there were journalists over at that hotel," he said. "We would not have shot at them."
I had originally planned to give Judge Pedraz today's knucklehead award except that a better candidate came forward. He is a runner-up knucklehead.
Just proof the US doesn't have a monopoly on out of control judges. What is it about the black robes that gives people like Santiago Pedraz a power trip like in this case. Three investigations cleared these soldiers. Plus living and working in a combat zone is dangerous. These journalists know that.
Most of all Judge Pedraz has no jurisdiction in the matter. He has to know that yet he moved forward with these warrants. A judge who has no respect for the law has no business being on the bench. These warrants are proof of just that with Judge Pedraz.
to the expression pissing away taxpayer money. The House wants to appropriate 2 million dollars to study flushless urinals. The company is in Michigan, so I guess its a congressman or congresswoman from that state pushing this idea. This would save Navy ships the cost of storing water but as James Joyner points out why is the taxpayer funding the study instead of the contractor?
Open Post- Indepundit
The House wants to divert $2 million in the Navy's FY06 operations accounts to boost a rapidly growing Michigan environmental technology firm that markets itself as the "world leader for waterfree urinals." In an unpublicized portion of the House version of the FY06 Defense appropriations bill, lawmakers added a conservation initiative that would pay for a Navy study exploring the use of "no flush" urinals. Advocates say the product could save thousands of gallons of water onboard ships and at military installations where water is scant. The initiative, which could help Falcon Waterfree Technologies expand its budding military contracting business, was added by appropriators even as they cut $2.9 billion from operations and maintenance accounts across the military services in an attempt to focus more spending on the global war on terrorism.
With Joe Girardi now out of the picture, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays continue to look for a new manager. The next candidates to be interviewed will be former MLB manager Bobby Valentine and California coach Joe Maddon.
Because of MLB rules, no announcement will be made till after the World Series is over. Who ever the Devils hire faces an uphill path. I don't envy anyone who tries to manage in that clueless organization.
ST. PETERSBURG - Joe Girardi went to the Marlins on Wednesday and the Devil Rays went on with their search for a manager, receiving permission to talk to Angels bench coach Joe Maddon and acknowledging that an announcement won't be made until after the World Series.
Both teams had serious interest in Girardi, though the Marlins appeared to want him more, identifying the Yankees bench coach immediately as their frontrunner and pursuing him aggressively.
The Rays' talks with Girardi were more advanced than with their other candidates, including a discussion of contract parameters, but they are not believed to have made a formal offer and did not seem especially surprised, or particularly disappointed, that he went to the Marlins.
"We thought he was a candidate who might fit with our organization and that's why he was on our list. He made his decision and we'll continue our search," Rays president Matt Silverman said.
"We didn't have any frontrunners in mind when we got into this process. Joe was someone we knew we needed to speak to early in our first round because of the Marlins' interest. I wouldn't characterize him as a frontrunner."
The Marlins, who will introduce Girardi at a news conference today in Miami, felt more strongly.
"Joe was known as an intelligent player with great leadership skills and he will bring those traits to his new position," Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria said in a statement. "He is the right man to lead our team and I'm proud that he will start what will be a long, successful managerial career here in south Florida."
The Rays received permission from the Angels to contact Maddon, who could emerge as a strong candidate, and are in the process of arranging an interview. Silverman said they also plan to talk with Bobby Valentine, but will wait until his Chiba Lotte team completes play in the Japan postseason. They have interviewed six others - internal candidates Bill Evers, Tom Foley, Billy Hatcher and John McLaren, former Tigers manager Alan Trammell and Braves hitting coach Terry Pendleton.
Maddon, 51, a member of the Angels organization for 31 years, including 12 on the major-league coaching staff, has hoped for a chance to manage and is intrigued by the Rays' opportunity.
"Absolutely," he said. Valentine, former manager of the Rangers and Mets, has also expressed interest.
While the Rays were poised to make a quick decision on Girardi if necessary, they now sound like they will take their time. "Until we get to talk to Maddon and probably Valentine we're not going to make any decisions about the current group or bringing in any other candidates," Silverman said.
While the Rays may continue talks, teams are barred from making major announcements during the World Series. The Rays may also use that time to start formal interviews for a senior front office official, with White Sox farm director Dave Wilder joining former Astros GM Gerry Hunsicker, former Angels GM Mike Port and Yankees executive Gene Michael as likely candidates.
Some Knuckleheads make you want to get ill. This is one of them. Today's winner is the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. They get it for their colossal blundering involving the case of Robert a 15 year old mentally retarded boy. He was put into state care after his mother's death. At a Tallahassee juvenille center he was housed at the boy was sexually assualted by a 17 year old sex offender. One Dept employees assigned to care for the boy.
A monumental bureaucratic screw-up doesn't do justice to this case. What were these people thinking of? All parties responsible for this should be first fired and then prosecuted.
Open Post- Political Teen
Robert, an orphan with the mind of an infant, was not a typical inmate at the Tallahassee juvenile detention center. The 15-year-old teen wore diapers and played with blocks.
Guards at the lockup found a solution for Robert's care: They assigned Lee Donton, a teenage convicted sex offender, to bathe him, clothe him and change his diaper.
Within weeks, Robert had been sexually assaulted, according to Tallahassee police. Now Donton, 17, is in a Tallahassee jail facing rape charges. And the Department of Juvenile Justice is facing another scandal as the agency's inspector general investigates allegations officers turned a blind eye to Robert's plight.
The story of Robert, considered severely mentally retarded with an IQ of 32, is contained in a 10-page Department of Juvenile Justice report completed last week.
''Clearly, the system has failed this young man,'' said John Hall, statewide director of the Association for Retarded Citizens in Tallahassee. ``Shame on everybody involved.''
Robert's ordeal began in 2000 when his mother became terminally ill. By this summer, Robert had come into contact with officials at three state agencies -- the Department of Juvenile Justice, the Department of Children & Families and the Agency for Persons with Disabilities.
The juvenile justice report suggests officials at all three agencies blundered, failing repeatedly to find a suitable home for the teen, whose elderly grandmother and great-aunt were too frail to care for him.
Said state Rep. Gustavo A. ''Gus'' Barreiro, a Miami Republican: ``This young man does not have a voice of his own. . . . The No. 1 goal of the system is to protect kids coming into our programs. But we put so little value on a kid.''
Tom Denham, a spokesman for the juvenile justice agency, appeared to dispute his own agency's report Wednesday.
''It is not the department's policy to assign youth to take care of any other youth,'' he said.
``We are going to wait until the investigation is complete.''
Mattie Russ, Robert's 84-year-old great-aunt, said she received a phone call from an official she could not identify, but she still knows little of what happened to her nephew.
''They just said he got hurt and he's all right now,'' she said. ``They didn't tell us nothing.''
At 300 pounds, Robert has the size of a defensive lineman.
FOOD AS AMUSEMENT
For months, his public defender's social worker says, Robert's grandmother and aunt amused the youth by feeding him.
Though Robert attended a special school regularly, the report said he ``just sat in class. . . . He was unable to color or coordinate blocks.''
When his public defender's social worker, Victor Williams, visited Robert at his home, he typically found the boy watching cartoons or soap operas and playing with teddy bears and other stuffed animals.
After his mother's death on Feb. 2, 2004, Robert became increasingly aggressive toward his elderly grandmother and aunt.
He was charged four times between December and May with battery on a person 65 or older.
Disability officials told a Gadsden County judge twice, in May and June, they had no bed for Robert at a group home capable of caring for him.
In May, a frustrated Judge William Gary ordered the youth detained indefinitely at the Tallahassee lockup, the report says.
A mental health counselor said Robert was entirely unable to care for himself, adding: ``His personal care needs are more than our staff are trained to provide.''
''Everything about [Robert] suggested he would be in jeopardy,'' said Nancy Daniels, the Tallahassee-based public defender.
At some point, the report says, Donton was given the responsibility for Robert's daily hygiene.
On June 16, a lockup supervisor, Tony Threatts, sent an e-mail to the superintendent and assistant superintendent of the facility raising alarms about the practice.
''I was made aware by one of my staff yesterday that youth Lee Donton, a sexual offender, is being allowed to shower and/or change [Robert's] diaper during the 7-3 shift and it was common practice and all staff, including the lieutenant, were aware of it,'' Threatts wrote.
``It was reported that the lieutenant was questioned by a staff member and the response was, `We have bigger things to worry about right now.'
''I want this out of my hands,'' Threatts wrote.
Williams, Robert's social worker, said he received private calls from guards at the lockup warning him that Robert ``was in trouble.''
He said he believes Robert was regularly assaulted over a period of months.
On June 23, two lockup detainees, one identified in the Department of Juvenile Justice report as an ''alleged eyewitness,'' complained to Tracy Shelby, a therapist at the lockup, that Robert was being abused.
That same day, the allegations were reported to Tallahassee police and to the Department of Children & Families' child abuse hot line.
Police charged Donton with two counts of sexual battery almost a month later. He was booked into the Leon County Jail on Aug. 5.
The investigation proved difficult.
Although the detention center is equipped with video monitoring equipment throughout, the report says, police said some of the videotape they requested was missing, while other tapes were of ''very poor quality'' because they were being used over and over.
Then you could have what psychologists in Japan term RHS. RHS stands for retired Husband Syndrome. My wife often suffers from this, usually if I spend too much time on the computer!
Open Post- Jo's Cafe
TOKYO -- Sakura Terakawa, 63, describes her four decades of married life in a small urban apartment as a gradual transition from wife to mother to servant.
Communication with her husband started with love letters and wooing words under pink cherry blossoms. It devolved over time, she said, into mostly demands for his evening meals and nitpicking over the quality of her housework.
So when he came home one afternoon three years ago, beaming, and announced he was ready to retire, Terakawa despaired."
'This is it,' I remember thinking. 'I am going to have to divorce him now,' " Terakawa recalled. "It was bad enough that I had to wait on him when he came home from work. But having him around the house all the time was more than I could possibly bear."
Concerned about her financial future if she divorced, Terakawa stuck with their marriage -- only to become one of an extraordinary number of Japanese women stricken with a disorder that experts here have recently begun diagnosing as retired husband syndrome, or RHS.
Terakawa developed stomach ulcers, her speech began to slur and rashes broke out around her eyes. When doctors discovered polyps in her throat but could find no medical reason for her sudden burst of ailments, she was referred to a psychiatrist, who diagnosed stress-related RHS.
Terakawa began receiving therapy from Nobuo Kurokawa, a physician who is one of Japan's leading RHS experts. Kurokawa coined the term in a presentation to the Japanese Society of Psychosomatic Medicine in 1991.
Kurokawa estimates that as many as 60 percent of the wives of retired men may suffer from RHS.
The storm is still in the southwest Carribean but slowing down. Wilma is expected to stall over the Yucatan before turning to the Northeast. That's at least what the computer models are saying now. With this slowing down, Wilma wouldn't reach Florida before Monday. Earlier forecasts had it here on Saturday.
We're still watching it. Below is an article from today's Sun-Sentinel website. I'll update this post as news develops.
Much of Florida went on high alert as Wilma exploded into the most intense hurricane on record, but the storm began to slow. It may not reach southeast Florida until Monday morning with its winds as high as 120 mph and driving rains.Officials in the Keys ordered mandatory evacuations starting today. In South Florida, coastal residents and those in mobile homes might be ordered to evacuate by Friday.
A small ray of hope emerged: If Wilma rams into Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, its anticipated right turn toward this region could be significantly altered and the system's strength weakened, the National Hurricane Center in Miami-Dade County said.
"If it goes just 20 or 30 miles inland, the core could be destroyed," said hurricane specialist Stacy Stewart. "A lot will depend on the exact track."At 5 a.m., Wilma, which has already left at least 13 dead, was about 195 miles southeast of Cozumel, Mexico, slowly churning west-northwest at 8 mph with sustained winds near 150 mph.
The expected turn to the northwest had not yet happened, keeping the storm on a track toward the Yucatan. The eyewall of Wilma was going through a weakening phase, with a replacement forming within 24 hours and the hurricane going through another strengthening.
"Thereafter ... a portion of the circulation will be interacting with the Yucatan Peninsula, and there will be increasing wind shear. Wilma should then begin a steady weakening trend," the hurricane center said in a statement.
Under the current forecast track, the system would strike near Naples. Hurricane center meteorologist Jennifer Pralgo said it was no longer expected to be a major hurricane after making its slow pass over the Yucatan. ``We expect it to be a Category 2 at landfall'' in Florida, Pralgo said. Category 2 hurricanes have 96-110 mph winds.
It would then roll through the north end of Palm Beach County as a Category 1 or 2 hurricane.The severe weather is expected to be widespread because Wilma is expected to grow in size, with its strongest winds likely to extend more than 100 miles from its center, Stewart said. Hurricane winds now extend 70 miles from the center.
"This is going to be a large hurricane with all the nasty conditions, including strong winds and storm surge," Stewart said. "No matter how you slice it, it's going to be bad this weekend."After the system clears out, cooler, drier conditions will prevail in South Florida.
"It could be the nicest weather of the season," said Eric Blake, meteorologist with the hurricane center.At 8 a.m. on Wednesday, Wilma's internal pressure dropped to a record 882 millibars, and it had sustained winds of 175 mph. The previous record low-pressure reading was 888 millibars, set in Hurricane Gilbert in 1988.
The system weakened because hurricanes cannot retain Category 5 intensity for long periods of time.Depending on its speed, hurricane watches could be posted for much of Florida's east coast by today and hurricane warnings by Friday.
Here is the Associated Press story.
MIAMI - New York Yankees bench coach Joe Girardi was hired Wednesday as manager of the Florida Marlins, agreeing to a three-year contract.
Girardi, who also interviewed for the Tampa Bay job, spent 15 years as a major league catcher, then went into broadcasting in 2004 and came out of the booth to join the Yankees' staff this season.
He'll be introduced by the Marlins at a news conference Thursday, the team said.
Read this column written by Ann Menendez in today's Miami Herald. No matter what your stance on the war, our fighting men and women deserve our support. Ms. Vitale served her country for two years and today she is suffering financial hardship for it.
The whole story angers me, I just wish I could help. What Ms. Menendez concludes with is absolutely true. This is no way to welcome a soldier home.
Open Post- Outside the Beltway and Indepundit
Poise, the kind acquired in 19 years of military service, is not something a soldier can easily abandon. So it was that Tuesday, before Doreen Vitale slid into a booth at the Gourmet Diner to begin her story, she first asked the server, very politely, to please wipe down the seat.
Minutes later, she couldn't stop her tears as she told how she lost her job, her gun and her badge after serving more than two years as a reservist in the war on terror. ''I was in shock. I served my country and then to suddenly be told I can't work because I was gone for two years . . . '' she said. ``It's hard to get past the hurt.''
Vitale returned from active duty in July. By now she should be back at her job as a security guard at the federal courthouse in Miami. She is not.
Vitale wasn't fired. She was just told she couldn't work until a new background check was completed.
That was two months ago. Today she sits in her two-bedroom apartment in Pembroke Pines, her savings depleted. She just canceled her cable for a savings of $30 a month. She'd like to downsize to a one-bedroom apartment, but she can't: Landlords want to see a recent pay stub, and she doesn't have one.
Vitale worked for Akal Security, which supplies guards to the federal government. After two years serving in Fort Stewart, Ga., Vitale this summer returned to her job at the courthouse to hugs and cheers. Ten days later, a supervisor ordered her to turn in her badge and gun.
Vitale had simply become the victim of paperwork, says her employer.
''Our contract requires anyone who's been on leave for an extended period of time to have their background check renewed,'' said Daya Khalsa, senior vice president of the New Mexico-based company.
The U.S. marshals didn't return several phone calls late Tuesday. But Vitale says the marshals told her that they weren't the ones holding up the process; it was Akal. Akal insists there's nothing it can do.
''We regret whatever inconvenience she's going through but that is the rule the government sets and we are obligated to comply,'' Khalsa said, adding that he didn't know how much longer the process would take.
It's a tragedy of national proportion that we're losing our most courageous men and women to the battlefields of Iraq while at home, one of the government's biggest security contractors is paralyzed by paperwork.
Vitale wasn't off on a two-year vacation to Tahiti. She was serving her country at a military base. Vitale passed a background check when she first went to work for Akal. If a new check was needed, why wasn't that completed before Vitale returned to Miami? And if that last courtesy was too much to bear, why can't Akal at least continue to pay her salary until this mess is sorted out?
At first, Vitale trusted that everything would be OK. Shaken and humiliated, she went home . She first went to a mediator, but when that didn't work out, she finally found a lawyer and filed suit this month. Her case, if it's heard, may take her back to her old courthouse, where her colleagues wear yellow ribbons in her support. ''The law is on my side,'' she said wryly, ``but the law doesn't pay the bills.''
Akal Security, which also contracts with Homeland Security, is booming in uncertain times while Vitale continues to be diminished by forces beyond her control.
When she was called back into active duty two years ago, Vitale had to sell her townhouse in Pembroke Pines. She figured she'd buy another one when she returned. But as her deployment dragged on, the real estate market exploded. She returned to find her old home unaffordable.
Now even the rent on a two-bedroom apartment is slipping beyond her reach. And Vitale, for all her poise, is on the verge of tears.
A lot of people have profited from this war. Doreen Vitale was just doing her job, and then she lost it all. That's no way to welcome a soldier home.
Since 6:30 this morning I been trying to send the same email but been told mail was down and try again in a few minutes. At 11:54 I was finally able to send my email. Don't you just love internet providers?
Today's winner is the annonymous Massachusetts man who threw away a winning one million dollar lottery ticket. The ticket was subsequently found by Edward St. John. Now the buyer is suing to get the ticket back.
There's an old saying- Finders Keepers, Losers weepers. The buyer is forgetting that, and Mr. St. John did nothing wrong. For being a sore loser, the annonymous buyer is today's Knucklehead of the day.
Hat tip- Wizbang
Open Post- Political Teen
Once the Blackstone man won more than $3,000 in a week. Another time, he scored about $20,000 on a winning lottery ticket.
But the one time he hit the $1 million jackpot, he said, he accidentally threw away his fortune.
Now he wants to collect his riches and has hired a lawyer to wrench the winning ticket away from the 82-year-old Blackstone resident who said he found it in the garbage last week.
''He's pretty emotionally upset," said Dan Doyle, a Blackstone lawyer representing the buyer of the ticket, who is in his 50s and wants to remain anonymous. ''Obviously, he also is concerned . . . because this older gentleman found this windfall and he looks like the bad guy because he's trying to get what's rightfully his."
Doyle said yesterday that his client went into the White Hen Pantry convenience store in Blackstone last week and bought more than $600 worth of tickets. While still in the store, he scratched each ticket, placing the losing ones in a pile. He accidentally put the winning ticket in the loser pile, which he then threw in the wastebasket.
The store owner called to tell him that Edward St. John went into the trash can right after he left, Doyle said.
The incident was filmed on the store's video camera, Doyle said. But St. John maintains he found the ticket in a garbage bin outside.
''Well I'll be darned," he said in a brief telephone interview yesterday. ''Can you imagine that? That's all I got to say."
She is now a Category five hurricane. The storm is trekking through the western carribean and will pass over or near the Mexico and Cuba.
Right now it was happens after this that is troubling. Wilma is expected to turn northeast towards Florida. It should weaken before getting here, but Wilma appears headed for southwest Florida and across the state. Right now Palm Beach County is in the middle of the cone. Stay tuned.
SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras - Hurricane Wilma strengthened into a Category 5 monster early Wednesday packing 175 mph winds, and forecasters said a key reading of the storm's pressure showed it to be the most powerful of the year.
Wilma was dumping rain on Central America and Mexico, and forecasters warned of a "significant threat" to Florida by the weekend.
The storm's power multiplied greatly over the last day. It was only Tuesday morning that Wilma grew from a tropical storm into a weak hurricane with 80 mph winds.
Wilma's pressure readings Wednesday morning indicated that it was the strongest hurricane of the season, said Trisha Wallace, a meteorologist at the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
Wilma had a reading of 892 millibars, the same reading as a devastating unnamed hurricane that hit the Florida Keys in 1935.
"We do not know how long it will maintain this Category 5 state," Wallace said.
Jamaica, Cuba, Nicaragua and Honduras were getting heavy rain from the storm, though it wasn't likely to make landfall in any of those countries, she said. Forecasts showed it would likely turn toward the narrow Yucatan Channel between Cuba and Mexico's Cancun region — then move into the storm-weary Gulf.
By 2 a.m. EDT, the hurricane was centered about 170 miles southwest of Grand Cayman Island and about 400 miles southeast of Cozumel, Mexico. It was moving toward the west-northwest at nearly 8 mph, according to the Hurricane Center.
"It does look like it poses a significant threat to Florida by the weekend. Of course, these are four- and five-day forecasts, so things can change," said Dan Brown, a meteorologist at the National Hurricane Center.
Wilma already had been blamed for one death in Jamaica as a tropical depression Sunday. It has
flooded several low-lying communities and triggered mudslides that blocked roads and damaged several homes, said Barbara Carby, head of Jamaica's emergency management office. She said that some 250 people were in shelters throughout the island.
While some Florida residents started preparing by buying water, canned food and other supplies, hurricane shutters hadn't gone up yet in Punta Gorda, on Florida's Gulf coast, and no long lines had formed for supplies or gas.
Still, Wilma's track could take it near that city and other Florida areas hit by Hurricane Charley, a Category 4 storm, in August 2004. The state has seen seven hurricanes hit or pass close by since then, causing more than $20 billion in estimated damage and killing nearly 150 people.
They aren't spending the money they are supposed to. An audit of the Florida Dept. of Elder Affairs showed that 12 million dollars hadn't been spent while some seniors badly in need of medicaid waited two years. Don't you just love Florida? No its endemic of any govt. work. Government equals inefficency at best and monumental clusterfucks at worst.
Nearly 33,000 Florida seniors who likely qualify for Medicaid assistance have languished on waiting lists, while the state built up millions in surpluses of unspent money.
That's according to an audit of the state Department of Elder Affairs released Monday by state Auditor General Bill Monroe.
"We recommend that the department perform timely reassessments to ensure that clients are prioritized at the appropriate level and receive adequate and timely services based on their condition," said auditor Sabrina Ballew in the report.
The audit found problems in particular with two programs designed to keep seniors out of nursing homes by helping them while they live at home or in assisted-living facilities.
The programs provide a range of services, such as bathing, cleaning houses and providing pest control. The programs also provide caretakers to give family members some free time to do grocery shopping or attend to their own needs.
More than 6,000 seniors were backlogged in those two programs alone as of April, while budget surpluses topped $12.8 million. At least 64 of the seniors most in need of immediate services had been waiting more than two years, the audit disclosed.
Elder Affairs Secretary Carole Green, in an Oct. 10 letter to Monroe, said the department has made great strides since she took over in March. One of the problems, she said, was that the allocation of money was based on overall population for each of the state's 11 regions, rather than on the number of clients and potential clients.
"The department has taken aggressive measures to improve the aging network's ability to manage the budgets and wait lists," Green said.
The backlog included 130 people in the 14-county district covered by the Area Agency on Aging for North Florida, based in Tallahassee. Executive Director Janice Wise said her agency has no choice but to keep potential clients on waiting lists while it tries to get more money from the state.
The Tallahassee agency did receive more money in June, she said, and was able to start paring down the list. It takes time after the money arrives to determine seniors' eligibility, she said.
The agency doesn't process people on the waiting list too far in advance because it doesn't want to raise their hopes needlessly, she said.
That describes the AJ Feeley era with the Miami Dolphins. The team traded the Quarterback today to San Diego for another 3rd string QB and an undisclosed draft pick. Its a certainty now- Miami flushed a valuable 2nd round pick down the toilet a year ago.
The Dolphins have traded A.J. Feeley to San Diego for fellow third-string quarterback Cleo Lemon and an undisclosed draft choice, a source said Tuesday.
Feeley was acquired by the Dolphins in the 2004 offseason from Philadelphia for a 2005 second-round draft choice in hopes he could become a full-time starter. Instead, Feeley never lived up to those expectations and ended up sharing playing time with Jay Fiedler for most of last season. Feeley then failed to best Gus Frerotte for a starting position during the 2005 preseason and was relegated to a third-string role behind Sage Rosenfels.
Lemon, 26, has served as San Diego's third-string quarterback for both of his two NFL seasons. A product of Arkansas State, the 6-2, 215-pound Lemon has never thrown a pass in an NFL game.
This story from the Christian Science Monitor is just plain out right sad. North Korea has a food shortage, there are countries and organizations that want to help but they are being forced to suspend their assistance. What for? Juche as they say in Pyongyang? The country needs six million tons of food to feed its people, and that is bare bones level. Right now North Korea can only produce 70% of that total and it is likely to get worse.
How many more millions are going to die to satisfy the mania of the man child who grows fat as his people starve around him? The US and South Korea ought to do something to end this madness. Is there anyone brave enough to take that step?
Open Post- California Conservative
PYONGYANG, NORTH KOREA - The only American citizen based permanently in
North Korea - a man responsible for coordinating food distribution to more than one quarter of the people in this impoverished country - may soon be heading home to Laredo, Texas.
Richard Ragan, who has served as in-country director of the World Food Program (WFP) for the past two years, was told in late August by the North Korean regime to halt all his program's food shipments here by the end of the year.
"They've been hinting for the past year they wanted us out," Mr. Ragan says. "They don't like our monitoring," he adds, alluding to the WFP's persistent, if often unsuccessful, efforts at making sure the food got to the neediest, rather than to the North's 1.1 million troops or to a small circle of party and government officials.
While still negotiating with Pyongyang, Ragan is rapidly shutting down 19 factories that process raw food into noodles and biscuits for the most vulnerable citizens.
Now the question is whether North Korea will be able to ship enough food through its dilapidated distribution system to make up for the loss of food aid from the WFP, which has distributed some 4 million tons of food since 1995. The statistics present a picture that shows how difficult it is to close the gap, even with shipments from China and South Korea and an improving harvest.
North Korea's harvest is expected to rise this year by at most ten percent from last year's 4.2 million tons - a level that still falls far short of the minimum of 6 million tons the country needs.
The WFP this year has shipped in about 320,000 tons while anxiously awaiting shipment of a final 25,000 tons of rice from the US. North Korea, meanwhile, counts on direct government-to-government donations from South Korea, which ships in 500,000 tons, and China, which provides several hundred thousand tons, mostly maize.
No one doubts the country has emerged from the depths of the famine that wiped out two million people in the mid-to-late 1990s, but food remains scarce, and this year's harvest may well be a one-time phenomenon.
"North Korea is likely to be a chronically food-insecure country until one of two things happens," says Ragan. "It has to buy enough food on the international market" or rely on donations. "It is unlikely that they will ever produce enough food without massive overhauling of the economy."
Somehow the country has to get a million tons of rice a year from China and South Korea - and then hope for better harvests and donations from elsewhere to fill the food gap. The average citizen, Ragan believes, now exists on 300 to 350 grams of rice a day - more than the 200 grams that people were receiving earlier in the year but still barely enough.
Getting food to the people who need it most will be another challenge, particularly with the loss of the WFP. Ragan says that the public distribution system here "was limping" well before a decision this month to stop a two-year experiment in private grain sales. The government, moreover, has axed an annual distribution survey that the WFP had been conducting, leaving Ragan and others even less certain than they were a year ago about how much food is getting to those most in need.
"We've never had to close such a large program so fast," says Ragan. "You can't turn them around so easily. You have to plan a year in advance. We still have food coming at the end of November. We have to move it fast."
While grappling with the immediate problem of switching off the food program, Ragan says the government has also told small nongovernmental organizations to pull out their foreign staffs or shut down their programs. With a slightly sardonic grin, he says, "Maybe the fact we've been asked to leave is an indication we've been pretty successful" in helping to rescue North Korea from a famine in the years since the WFP set up shop here in 1995.
You may recall this story from my earlier posts here, and here. The prosecutor has decided not to file charges in the case. This was what I thought would be the likely outcome. I still don't believe in Mr. Brenner's innocence in this story. Hopefully his career in journalism is over.
CARBONDALE, Ill. - No laws were broken by a woman who duped Southern Illinois University's student newspaper with a tale that she was the guardian of a motherless girl whose father was a soldier in Iraq, a prosecutor said.
"I can't see any crime here," State's Attorney Mike Wepsiec said Monday, explaining his decision not to seek criminal charges against Jaimie Reynolds of Marion.
An investigation indicated Reynolds did not profit from the scam, which Wepsiec said could have elevated it to a criminal act.
Reynolds, who graduated from SIU last year, has said she and Michael Brenner, a former editor of the school's Daily Egyptian, concocted the story of the anguish of 8-year-old Kodee Kennings at seeing her dad go to war to help Brenner's career.
Brenner denies her claim. Wepsiec did not address whether he thought Brenner had any role.
The Daily Egyptian had reported about Reynolds and Kodee for nearly two years, publishing supposed letters from Kodee about the difficulty of being apart from her father.
The ruse unraveled in August when the student newspaper heard the soldier had been killed in Iraq, and subsequent investigations by it and the Chicago Tribune reveal that he did not exist.
A 10-year-old girl who posed as Kodee in public appearances and a man who pretended to be her father have said they were unwitting participants in the scam and believed they were acting in a film.
The case remains under review by the university's School of Journalism. Director Walter Jaehnig said Monday that no disciplinary action had been taken against any student or faculty member in connection with the hoax.
No wonder they call California, Oregon and Washington the left coast. Incumbent Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell will face primary opposition from a candidate who admits he is left of Maria on many issues.
Hat tip- Richard Gardner at OTB who points out Sen. Cantwell's 95 rating from Americans for Democratic Action. He also thinks Mr. Wilson has no chance and this is further proof of the lunacy of the far left in this country. I got to agree with Richard.
OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Maria Cantwell, Washington's junior senator, has been quietly girding for a tough re-election challenge from the Republicans. Now she's also dealing with a primary challenge from her left flank.
Mark Wilson, who warmed up with primary races against Jay Inslee and Patty Murray, is running as a progressive "peace and justice" candidate, assailing Cantwell for everything from her vote to send troops to Iraq to her free-trade stance.
Wilson portrays Cantwell as ineffective and a tool of corporate America, and says the Democrats could lose the seat if she's nominated next September.
Cantwell doesn't seem particularly worried, but has moved to shore up her liberal base. She recently signed a letter critical of the administration's handling of the Iraq war and has taken on Enron, oil drilling in the Arctic wilderness, and supposed oil and gasoline price-gouging.
She also has taken some fence-mending sessions with some of the more liberal Democratic activists.
"You never take anything for granted and you run very hard," says Michael Meehan, her top aide. "We expect to have the support of Democrats. The roadmap to victory is to get your base behind you solidly."
INTO THE FRAY...
Meanwhile, Wilson is ready to exploit what he sees as a rift in the state's majority party. Even before Congress authorized the war, the Poulsbo businessman and Marine veteran was urging the party to vigorously oppose President Bush and the Iraq conflict. It's a signature issue as he barnstorms the state, meeting with local party groups and "peace and justice" groups.
So far, he hasn't made much of a dent by taking on three of the party's most popular politicians.
As the Libertarian Party nominee for the 1st District congressional seat in 2002, he polled 3 percent against Jay Inslee. Last fall, he got 1 percent of the vote in a four-way Senate race won by Patty Murray.
Undeterred, he's running against Cantwell, who is seeking re-election to a second six-year Senate term. Since he's running as a Democrat this time, the primary will be up or out for Wilson.
He says he's running to win, and not just to add his voice to the debate. But he also acknowledges the long-shot nature of taking on an incumbent who is backed by much of the party apparatus.
"Some people want to call me the snowball's-chance-in-hell candidate," Wilson says with a laugh.
"I tell people that as a former Marine and a former fisherman in Alaska, I've done both hell and snowballs."
In 2000, Cantwell edged three-term Republican Sen. Slade Gorton in the absentees, by a margin of less than 2,500 votes.
Wilson said his early campaigning has convinced him that Cantwell's party support is soft, particularly among liberal anti-war activists and progressives who fault her for not more vigorously opposing the policies espoused by the White House and the Republican Congress.
"She voted for the war and the Patriot Act and the confirmation of (Secretary of State) Condoleezza Rice, NAFTA, the Bush energy policy and so on," he says. "I would have voted against each and every one of those."
Wilson wants an immediate end to the Iraq war and calls for an end to "corporate welfare."
He opposes the war on drugs, seeks a big reduction in weapons production, and proposes a national back-to-work program to rebuild infrastructure and alternative energy sources.
He portrays Cantwell, a former RealNetworks executive who used $10 million of her own wealth to mostly self-finance her last campaign, as a tool of corporate America. After losing cliffhangers for Gorton's Senate seat and the governor's mansion last year, Republicans are gunning for Cantwell and she'd be a weak nominee, he says.
"I am left and forward of Maria on many issues," he says.
An article in today's Palm Beach Post ponders that. The County school system has 5,000 less students than anticipated. I'm as clueless as school officials as to why but I got a question. Does this mean I'll get a rebate on my property taxes? In my dreams only.
Open Post- Indepundit
Principal Maureen Werner doesn't remember a time when Limestone Creek Elementary had fewer than 1,000 students. She knew something was up when school district demographers estimated she would have 990 this year.
Only 940 showed up.
One teacher was cut. Another had to go from specializing in math and working with many students to having her own class. Werner also lost employees she was used to having because she had so many students, such as an extra person to answer phones.
Overall, the Palm Beach County School District expected enrollment to grow this year by more than 5,000 students. Most of them never showed up.
The district has grown by more than 5,100 students each of the past four years. But only 477 more children are enrolled in county public schools this year, according to an official count of students last week.
The overestimate will cost the district $14.1 million in state money. The only people who will be hired for the rest of the year are teachers and classroom aides. The district has frozen spending on textbooks and other classroom materials; that budget alone is taking a $1.8 million hit.
Werner and district planners are puzzled.
"My take on it is that people really can't afford to live in Jupiter and Tequesta any more and they're cashing out and moving," Werner said. "Development is going up. I just don't know who's moving here."
Last spring, based on previous growth, it was estimated that 178,362 students would cram the nearly 200 schools in the county. But only 173,236 enrolled, at the same time the district planned to build 14 new schools in the next five years. Those numbers may include some of the 200 students who moved here from areas devastated by Hurricane Katrina.
The single-year dip in enrollment isn't enough to derail the district's ambitious construction plans, Facilities Management Chief Joe Sanches said.
The unexplained lack of growth isn't unique to Palm Beach County. Broward County schools have 1,100 fewer students than last year.
Palm Beach County schools' original theory was that housing costs were pushing students north, where prices are lower, Budget Director Mike Burke told school board members last week.
But St. Lucie County has about 1,000 fewer students than expected, and Martin County also grew by less than predicted.
"All of the data was pointing to a continuation of growth," said Judith Brennan, the Palm Beach County district's school boundaries and demographics manager. "The 477 would have seemed like a number that you pulled out of the air. There is no specific set of data that tells us there are fewer families out there than there were last year."
For the past three years, demographers' estimates have been within 500 students of the actual number.
The following story out of Wisconsin is further proof of a long standing belief I have. People over 70 need to have regular exams. Here the police didn't even charge the man, though you had to question his faculties. Rouland Steppert crashed his car into the Burger King, then parked and went inside for breakfast. Why is Mr. Steppart still on the road? He apparently isn't all there mentally. Thankfully no one got hurt.
Open Post- Euphoric Reality
WAUSAU, Wis. - A man whose car ran into the front entry of a fast-food restaurant backed away, parked and went in for breakfast, officials say.
Police Patrol Inspector Bryan Hilts said 78-year-old Rouland Steppert's car struck the glass entryway of the downtown Burger King Friday.
After he backed up, parked and went inside, he was served his food, and police called to the scene found him eating at a table.
General manager Kathy Fasse declined to say what he ordered.
By lunchtime, glass and other debris had been cleared away and customers were able to use the normal entry.
Because the accident was on private property, the man was not cited, Hilt said.
No phone listing could be found for Steppert when The Associated Press tried to reach him for comment Monday night.
I admire Tedy Bruschi's courage. He is coming back to football eight months after suffering a mild stroke.
A side note- The image I probably remember best from the last Super Bowl broadcast wasn't a play from the game but one of Bruschi playing with his young sons some time before the game. Those boys have a remarkable father.
Open Post- Jo's Cafe
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - Tedy Bruschi is ready to play football again, just eight months after a mild stroke left him unsure whether his life would ever return to normal.
The Patriots linebacker said he'll practice with the team Wednesday after doctors cleared him. Just 10 days before the stroke, Bruschi intercepted a pass in New England's second straight Super Bowl victory last Feb. 6.
"I came to the point where they tell me I can play. I feel like I can play. Shoot, I know I can play," Bruschi said Monday. "So let's just play."
Coach Bill Belichick will decide when to use him in a game, but Bruschi said he has no doubt it will be this season. Belichick said it's possible Bruschi will play in the Patriots' next game against Buffalo on Oct. 30 after a bye next weekend.
"Tedy's come a long way," Belichick said on his regular Monday appearance on WEEI radio. "He looks pretty normal to me. So it's great to see him just acting and carrying himself that way.
That's the Tedy Bruschi we all know and love."
Bruschi, the emotional and tactical leader of the defense, said he isn't returning because the Patriots are struggling. And it's not because his hunger to play needs feeding or his ego demands massaging, he said.
In the early days after the stroke, one of his biggest concerns was "would I ever see again?"
So the decision to return is something the 32-year-old defensive captain and father of three young sons didn't make lightly.
"We've made sure," a relaxed Bruschi said in his first news conference after declining interview requests since the stroke. "We've checked and checked and checked and, OK, let's check another time because we wanted to be sure.
"I'm not just doing this just because I just want to play," he added. "I mean, come on. I lost my sight. One morning, one day you wake up and you can't see your sons very clearly anymore because you've had a stroke. You can't walk. You can't walk write."
Gradually, he and his wife, Heidi — "what husband would just do this on his own?" he said — came to the realization that he was ready to practice.
"There were times, in my mind, I thought I was done," Bruschi said. "If I could express to you what this means to me (to return) I would, but I don't know if I really can."
Today's winners are Darlene Superville and her employer the Associated Press. Ms. Superville wrote an article on Karl Rove, advisor to President Bush. What revealing information did we learn? The contents of the man's garage!
This is journalism? AP and Darlene Superville get the Knucklehead award because they are both in need of one vital thing. A life! Hat tip- Betsy's Page
Open Post- Political Teen
10-17) 16:57 PDT WASHINGTON, (AP) --
He is "the architect" who steered George W. Bush to victory four times, twice as Texas governor and twice as president.
But can Karl Rove organize his own garage? Can the master of Bush's political planning figure out where to put the ladders, paint cans and cardboard boxes?
Rove's wife, Darby, raised the white garage door one morning last week to show journalists outside the million-dollar brick home that the deputy chief of staff, assistant to the president and senior adviser wasn't home. All the interest came on the eve of his testimony Friday before a grand jury investigating who in the White House might have revealed the identity of a CIA operative.
There was no car in the garage. And the stuff left behind turned out not to be much different from what gathers dust inside most American garages.
The inventory, seen from outside:
_Some cardboard file boxes stacked one on top of the other, labeled "Box 6,""Box 4" and what appears to be "Box 7." No sign of boxes 1, 2, 3 and 5.
_What appear to be paint cans stacked alongside a folded, folding chair.
_A rather large wood crate marked "FRAGILE" and painted with arrows indicating which way is up. On top of the crate, two coolers.
_A tall aluminum ladder.
_A snow shovel leaned in front of another cardboard box.
_Wicker baskets inside of wicker baskets on top of a shelf running the length of the rear wall. Transparent plastic storage bins crammed with indiscernible stuff. Another cardboard box.
_In one corner, the rear wheel of a bicycle sticks out, along with what appears to be a helmet.
_Another ladder, this one green, leaning sideways.
COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - A SriLankan Airlines stewardess called in a bomb threat because she wanted a day off, a newspaper reported Sunday.
Investigators traced the call and found that it was made from a mobile phone belonging to the stewardess' boyfriend, Colombo's Sunday Times weekly reported.
"The inquiry reveals that the stewardess had given the false alarm because she did not want to fly that day," it said.
The stewardess was fired, it reported.
SriLankan Airlines spokeswoman Ruvini Jayasinghe declined to either confirm or deny the report and referred the call to senior officials, who were not immediately reachable.
She was disqualified Sunday due to a improper drop she took during Saturday’s round. The mistake wasn’t discovered till Sunday.
Such things have happened to the best golfers on tour. Michelle wasn’t cheating, not like some now golf television personality. (Cough cough…) It was unfortunate, but Wie even said she learned from the experience. If in doubt, get a rules official.
PALM DESERT, Calif. - Michelle Wie walked off the 18th green with her head held high. It wasn’t her best golf, but it was good enough for fourth place — a respectable way to start her professional career. Nearly two hours later, with a stunned look on her face and the tears still not dry, she tried to explain a bizarre sequence of events that made her debut memorable for all the wrong reasons.
Wie thought she would be cashing her first check. Instead, she was embroiled in a rules dispute that got her disqualified Sunday in the Samsung World Championship.
“I’m pretty sad, but, you know, I think I’m going to get over it,” Wie said. “I learned a lot from it. It’s obviously not the way I wanted to begin, but it’s all right.”
Everything went all wrong when she finished with a 2-over 74, leaving her 10 shots behind Annika Sorenstam, as dominant as she has been all year, responded to all the hype around the 16-year-old phenom from Hawaii by turning a four-shot lead into nine shots at the turn, building it as large as 10 shots and then closing with a double bogey from the desert for a 3-under 69.
Wie’s troubles stemmed from the day before, when she took a drop from a Gold Lantana bush to the left of the par-5 seventh green, took a penalty drop for an unplayable lie, and escaped with a par.
Two rules officials escorted her to the seventh green after her final round Sunday, and she was asked to show where the ball disappeared into the bush, and where she took her drop.
They determined it was too close to the hole — 3 inches too close according to Wie, about a foot according to the rules officials. That’s a two-shot penalty, so she should have added two strokes to her third-round 71.
Ultimately, she was disqualified for signing an incorrect card, which cost her $53,126 in prize money.
“I learned a great lesson,” Wie said. “From now on, I’ll call a rules official no matter where it is, whether it’s 3 inches or 100 yards. I respect that.”
Michael Bamberger, a reporter for Sports Illustrated, told tour officials Sunday afternoon that he was concerned about the drop. Rules officials Jim Haley and Robert O. Smith reviewed tape from NBC Sports before taking Wie and caddie Greg Johnston to the seventh green after the tournament ended Sunday.
“If I had to make the ruling based on the videotape, to me it was inconclusive,” Smith said.
He had Johnston and Wie show him where the ball was in the bushes, then where they dropped. They paced it off, then used string to measure the distance and determined it to be slightly closer.
“The Rules of Golf are based on facts,” Smith said. “They had to tell us where it was. The fact was, the ball was closer to the hole by 12 to 15 inches.”
Bamberger was on the seventh hole Saturday when Wie took her drop, then paced off the distance from the hole after Wie, in the final group that day, went to the eighth tee. He asked her after the third round how she determined where to drop the ball, and Wie said she used “the triangle thing to make sure that you’re not closer.”
Even after her disqualification, she felt she did nothing wrong.
“I was honest out there,” she said. “I did what I thought was right. I was pretty confident. If I did it again, I’d still do that. It looked right to me. But I learned my lesson.”
I totally agree with Betsy about what is chronicled in this article from yesterday's Washington Post. A high school band playing "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" is somehow a violation of the separation of Church and State. That principle has been stretched to the point of ridiculous already. This is just one more example. The secular crowd in this country need to get a life. They are the real Devils in this story.
After the devil went down to Georgia, it seems, he got censored in Prince William County.
In preparation for a guest appearance at the Peach Bowl in Atlanta, the marching band at C.D. Hylton High School had a logical and seemingly innocuous idea: play a Georgia-themed song. They decided on "The Devil Went Down to Georgia," by the Charlie Daniels Band.
But early this month, a local newspaper, the Potomac News, published a letter by a Woodbridge resident who, after having seen the C.D. Hylton Bulldawg Marching Band perform the country-western hit at a football game, wondered how a song about the devil could be played at school events, because of the separation of church and state.
Fearing bad public reaction, Hylton's longtime band director, Dennis Brown, pulled the song from the playlist. "I was just being protective of my students. I didn't want any negative publicity for C.D. Hylton High School," he said.
But Brown's strategy backfired. The decision has created a furor, and even Charlie Daniels has weighed in.
"I am a Christian, and I don't write pro-devil songs. Most people seem to get it. It's a fun little song," Daniels said Friday in a telephone interview from Mokena, Ill., where he was scheduled to perform a concert. "I think it's a shame that the [marching band director] would yield to one piece of mail. If people find out that he can be manipulated that easily, he's going to have a hard way to go."
Christine Heeren, whose daughter Sandrine, 17, is the band's color guard captain, said many parents are frustrated that the song won't be performed but are unanimous in their respect for Brown as a thoughtful and popular band director.
"I am quite in a dilemma," she said. "The children were more disappointed because they spent a lot of hours in marching band camp. It takes a lot of patience and drilling."
Residents, alumni and parents have been fulminating in the Potomac News and on its Web site against censorship, the values of the media, the band director and, perhaps not surprisingly, the writer of the letter, Robert McLean. In the paper's online forum, people have written about a range of topics -- abortion, presidential politics, whether Daniels rocks or not-- that show how testy emotions have become.
To paraphrase from the song, fire has flown from their fingertips:
"God have mercy. How did we become a country full of weenies who give into the cranky nonsense of 1 voice?" one person tapped out on a computer. "I guess I need to go back to school. I thought the idea behind our country was that the majority ruled? You know, like the majority of people voted for the President's re-election and now the ruling party is knuckling under to every left wing nut out there? I give up!"
State Rep. Shelley Vana, D-Lantana, a former president of the Classroom Teachers Association, had to give up her classroom job to accommodate her legislative schedule. She took an administrative job with the school district but contends the CTA's collective bargaining agreement allows her to remain in the union.
The school district says otherwise, so Vana has filed a grievance.
Vana, who holds a newly created science program coordinator position that allows her to take unpaid leave for Tallahassee duties, says she still needs union protection.
"As a legislator, I could very well speak out on issues that might not be popular," Vana says.
Staying in the union would also make her eligible to run for CTA president again. Asked whether she might seek the top union post again, Vana said, "I wouldn't rule it out. But that's not the reason" for the grievance.
Shelley is an absolute hoot. She would be my knucklehead winner today except for the Broward County story is better.
I mean how many ways does she want it? State Legislator, a county job made JUST for her and now union membership. Shelley you're entitled to no more priviliges than anyone else. You've gotten far too many special ones already. Your constituents may take the privilige your of booting your butt out of office next fall.
Where is the Post on this story too? Not a word from Schultz and the editorial board on this topic. Randy do you only criticize Republicans?
Open Post- Indepundit
Thanks to the Palm Beach Post editorial page. Today they had one of their regular editorials in favor of a sales tax on internet sales. The Post rehashes this subject at least twice a year. I'm only going to quote the punchline at the end.
This would not be a tax increase. Buyers are supposed to pay the tax now. This would establish what everyone in Congress claims to be for: fairness.
A tax on internet sales isn't a tax increase? Only in the far left minds of Randy Schultz and his co-horts at the Post. If a tax takes more money out of the public's pocket then it is an increase.
I almost gagged on my early morning coffee today on reading that sentence.
This one garners no sympathy from me either as did the other one this week. This Guatamalan man age 27, was enrolled in a local high school. He managed that trick by using fake identification. Did anyone ever check it? Apparently not. Mr. Ramirez-Mejia most likely faces deportation when his fraud case is resolved.
Josue Oswaldo Ramirez-Mejia wanted to learn English. He wanted to read books. He wanted to learn so badly that he broke the law to get an education.
A month ago, the illegal immigrant from Guatemala forged his birth certificate, to age 17, and his school transcript to get into high school.
This week, his wallet containing his Guatemalan ID card slipped out of his pocket, and so did his secret — Ramirez-Mejia was 27.
Schools officials called him to the office, where sheriff's deputies questioned him. He was charged with forgery and could be deported.
"He just wanted to get in," his brother, Maximo Ramirez, said in a telephone interview Thursday night.
Ramirez-Mejia, who was born in Guatemala, had lived with his older brother in West Palm Beach before moving to Pasco County three months ago.
In August, he registered at J.W. Mitchell High School in an affluent and fast-growing section of Pasco County.
While his brother Maximo worked 15-hour days laying tile, Ramirez-Mejia listened to lectures on U.S. history, government and economics.
He was passing all his classes.
A sheriff's spokesman said there is no evidence to suggest he intended to do anything but get an education.
Ramirez-Mejia now sits in the Land O' Lakes Detention Center until someone can post his $5,000 bail. But that won't be anytime soon.
"I don't have any money," his brother said.
Ramirez and his brother are from an agricultural city on the west coast of Guatemala. They came to Palm Beach County four years ago to work.
In January, they incorporated a business, Torre Fuerte Inc. Three months ago, they moved to Pasco County.
A few weeks after school started, Ramirez-Mejia enrolled in the school. Ramirez said he doesn't know who helped his brother enroll in the school, but they both knew it was wrong.
On Tuesday, Ramirez-Mejia lost his wallet. A student picked it up after fourth period and turned it in to a gym teacher. The teacher opened it and saw a photograph of Ramirez-Mejia on a Guatemalan identification card. The date of birth was Jan. 3, 1978.
"I'm alone and I'm very sad because my brother is not here and I cannot speak to him,"
Ramirez said in Spanish. Ramirez, who does not speak English, said deputies did not provide an interpreter.
"They won't let me see him. They said I need $5,000."
Even if he bonds out of jail, Ramirez-Mejia may face deportation. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will process him at its Tampa office, but spokeswoman Pam McCullough it's unlikely the agency will require him to post a second bail. He will face an immigration judge but not until the forgery case against him is closed.
The NYT columnist is either looking to be a news anchor or terribly bored. Is NY Times select to blame for this patch work column? Any one care to check out all that Mr. Krugman is writing about?
I've made my opinions clear on Senator Frist. Celebrity witnesses are nothing new to Congress, don't like it either way but at least Michael Crichton has a professional and educational background to back him up. I wouldn't argue with what Alan Greenspan said either.
There are two paragraphs that I find troubling.
Last week three men were arrested in connection with the gangland-style murder of Mr. Boulis. SunCruz, after it was controlled by Mr. Kidan and Mr. Abramoff, paid a company controlled by one of the men arrested, Anthony "Big Tony" Moscatiello, and his daughter $145,000 for catering and other work. In court documents, questions are raised about whether food and drink were ever provided. SunCruz paid $95,000 to a company in which one of the other men arrested, Anthony "Little Tony" Ferrari, is a principal.
Tom DeLay, who stepped down as House majority leader after his indictment, once called Mr. Abramoff "one of my closest and dearest friends." Mr. Abramoff funneled funds from clients to conservative institutions and causes. The Washington Post reported that associates of Mr. DeLay claim that he severed the relationship after Mr. Boulis's murder.
Why is Krugman making this connection? I did a search of Washington Post articles, there is none that connects Delay and Boulis together. Just one which mentions Delay's relationship with Abramoff. Guilt by association and based on what? My make the comment except to slander someone? Krugman would shrug it off saying there is no insinuations in what he says. He's just reporting what the Post did. I'm no fan of Dey but I'd say what a crock.
No wonder Paul Krugman was #8 in Bernard Goldberg's book the 100 people screwing up America.
Don't you like forecasters? They always predict the worst and they are almost always wrong. Then if you think about it, the media only publishes the most dire predictions or news. Just look at New Orleans.
Here we have UN health official predicting as many as 150 million people dying from Asian Bird flu. The low number this official predicts is 5 million. The low number is scary if accurate. Still I tend to agree with James Joyner, this UN official hasn't a clue.
Friday Special- Cafe Oregano
A new flu pandemic could happen at any time and kill between 5-150 million people, a UN health official warned.
David Nabarro, who is charged with co-ordinating responses to bird flu, said a mutation of the virus affecting Asia could trigger new outbreaks.
"The consequences in terms of human life when the pandemic does start are going to be extraordinary and very damaging," Dr Nabarro told the BBC.
"It's like a combination of global warming and HIV/Aids 10 times faster than it's running at the moment," Dr Nabarro told the BBC.
The UN's new co-ordinator for avian and human influenza said the likelihood that the Asian virus could mutate and jump to humans was high.
Because it has moved to wild migratory birds there is a possibility "that the first outbreak could happen even in Africa or in the Middle East", he warned.
The comments came as agriculture ministers from the Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) endorsed a three-year plan to combat the spread of the virus, and pledged $2m to fund research and training.
Goes to the management of Halifax Calderdale Royal Hospital. They want visitors to stop staring at babies in the maternity ward. It may disturb the newborns.
All newborns do is eat, sleep, cry, pee and poop. They also have a limited eyesight range. Did any of these bureaucrats ever raise a newborn or go to medical school? Apparently not. For being dumb and burdening staff and patients' families with more rules, the management of Calderdale Royal Hospital is today's Knucklehead of the day.
Nothing is more guaranteed to break the ice than the sight of a newborn baby.
But visitors to one hospital have been warned against cooing over the new arrivals - for fear of infringing their human right to privacy.
Managers at Calderdale Royal Hospital in Halifax have asked visitors to the maternity wing not to stare into cots or question mothers about their labour.
Staff in one of the wards have put up a display of a doll in a cot with a message saying: "What makes you think I want to be looked at?"
But not all mothers are so keen to have the privacy of their child protected.
Lynsey Pearson, 26, who gave birth to her daughter Hannah four weeks ago, said: "This ludicrous idea is taking patient confidentiality to the extreme.
"If people did not ask me questions about my baby I would be offended.
"I am so proud of Hannah and I want to show her off and I would imagine all new mums feel that way.
"When I was in hospital even the cleaners asked me questions and touched her and cuddled her. Babies love attention and I think it is cruel to ask visitors and parents basically to ignore them."
'People can't resist cooing'
Debbie Lawson, a ward sister at the special care baby unit, said: "We know people have good intentions and most cannot resist cooing over new babies but we need to respect the child.
"Cooing should be a thing of the past because these are little people with the same rights as you or me.
"We often get visitors wandering over to peer into cots but people sometimes touch or talk about the baby like they would if they were examining tins in a supermarket and that should not happen.
"Hopefully our message comes across loud and clear. The Government has set a benchmark that every patient has a right to privacy and dignity and we say that includes tiny babies as well.
"I can't imagine why any mother would complain about this. Most would be against strangers poking and prodding and asking questions."
The hospital held an "advice day" last week to promote the initiative. Cards were handed out to visitors headlined "Respect my baby", with a message underneath as written by a baby. "I am small and precious so treat me with privacy and respect," it said. "My parents ask you to treat my personal space with consideration. I deserve to be left undisturbed and protected against unwanted public view."
Hospital management tried to play down the initiative, insisting they were just "common sense" measures and not "firm rules".
Unless you been in a cave for 24 hours, you know the House Majority Leader was indicted yesterday in Texas. Delay has also stepped down from his leadership post and been replaced by Roy Blunt of Missouri.
The blogosphere is unsurprisingly lining up by what ideology one holds or what party one supports. Where do I stand? I don't really know. Previously I've expressed my skepticism towards politicians and unfolding corruption scandals. Whether its Democrat or Republican I tend to be a skeptic and believe the charges being made but not always.
The charges against Delay are as complex as the laws. What Dr. Stephen Taylor says at Poliblog pretty much sums up how I feel.
If anything, it seems to me that this whole case will underscore the labyrinthine nature of campaign finance rules and regulations.
Put me down as undecided then. Don't count on me blogging too often on the legal fight that is sure to be coming in the months and years ahead.
Lunch- Basil's blog
The following story is outrageous. A mother of two is dead and it shouldn't have happened. An illegal immigrant arrested multiple times for driving without a license was the cause of the crash.(Just wait the Palm Beach Post will find this the time to come out with the obligatory editorial saying why illegals should get driver licenses.) Our immigration laws are almost only enforced against those who want to come here legally. Too many politicians either in the pocket of contributors who make their money off the work of illegals, or other politicians who are blind to the problem.
My feelings on this issue as with our often broken justice system are the same. The American public will only take so much. How many lives will be lost before our politicians learn?
LANTANA — A 42-year-old mother of two was killed Sunday evening after an illegal immigrant arrested four previous times for driving without a license stopped his truck in the middle of traffic on South Military Trail to find his cellphone, according to police.
Motorcyclists riding behind the truck crashed into it, claiming the life of Lantana resident Kimberly Jo Dahmer and seriously injuring her husband.
Daniel Rodriguez Mendoza, 21, of 3919 Nowata Road, was denied bail Monday on charges of driving without a license and leaving the scene of a crash resulting in death.
The family of Dahmer, who was on one of two motorcycles that slammed into the rear of Mendoza's 1988 Chevy Blazer, say those charges are not enough.
"He's got to be charged with murder; he's the reason she's dead," said Valerie Audain, Dahmer's niece. "Why should he get a chance to enjoy his own family? Jail is too easy."
Dahmer was riding northbound on South Military Trail near Blue Pine Circle on the back of a 1996 Harley-Davidson before 6:30 p.m. Sunday. The driver was her husband of 17 years, Steve Dahmer. He and two others aboard another Harley were taken to Delray Medical Center. On Monday, his 43rd birthday, he was in surgery still unaware of his wife's fate.
"They were soulmates," Audain said. "You never met two who belong together like them."
His family said doctors were trying to save his leg and will operate again today.
The driver of the other motorcycle, Pierre Nadeau, 49, of West Palm Beach, was in serious condition Monday afternoon. His passenger, 43-year-old Lynne Gardner, also of West Palm Beach, was released from the hospital.
None on the motorcyclists was wearing helmets when Mendoza abruptly came to a stop, said Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Terri Barbera. Following the crash and Kimberly Jo Dahmer's ejection from the bike, an unscathed Mendoza made a U-turn, fleeing about 500 feet before motorcyclists riding with the crash victims forced him off the road and removed his car keys, police reported.
Mendoza later told sheriff's deputies he stopped his truck because he thought he saw his cellphone in the road, Barbera said.
Dahmer left behind a 16-year-old daughter, a 9-year-old son and a 2-month-old grandson, relatives said. Friends and family gathered at the Dahmers' Ocean Avenue home Monday afternoon were infuriated that Mendoza had previous arrests for driving without a license.
In the span of one year, between July 2003 and March 2004, Mendoza was arrested four times on that charge, according to Florida Department of Law Enforcement and other state records.
Out of the five total charges he faced, one of which was filed after an accident, he was found guilty once, for speeding, records show. He also was charged Sunday with failure to appear in court after one of the previous arrests.
AP has a very detailed article on the Senate Majority Leader's handling of his so called blind trust and the HCA stock in it. I blogged earlier about this here. If what AP is reporting is true, then I feel Bill Frist has a great deal of explaining to do. Right now the Senator's sale is under investigation by the SEC.
WASHINGTON - Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., was updated several times about his investments in blind trusts during 2002, the last time two weeks before he publicly denied any knowledge of what was in the accounts, documents show.
The updates included stock transactions involving HCA Inc., the hospital operating company founded by Frist's family.
Frist's sale of HCA stock is under scrutiny by the federal government. Nashville, Tenn.-based HCA said Friday it had received a subpoena from prosecutors for the Southern District of New York, asking for documents the company believes are related to Frist's sale of company stock this past summer.
Prosecutors also have contacted the senator's office, Frist spokesman Bob Stevenson said Friday. He said neither the senator nor his office had received a subpoena.
But the interesting part comes here.
Frist sold his HCA stock from several blind trusts this summer, at a time when insiders in the company also were selling off shares worth $112 million from January through June. Frist aides say he sold his stock to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest.
Frist, asked in a television interview in January 2003 whether he should sell his HCA stock, responded: "Well, I think really for our viewers it should be understood that I put this into a blind trust. So as far as I know, I own no HCA stock"
Frist, referring to his trust and those of his family, also said in the interview, "I have no control. It is illegal right now for me to know what the composition of those trusts are. So I have no idea."
Documents filed with the Senate showed that just two weeks before those comments, the trustee of the senator's trust, M. Kirk Scobey Jr., wrote to Frist that HCA stock was contributed to the trust. It was valued at $15,000 and $50,000.
The documents filed by the trustees of Frist's blind trusts were obtained by The Associated Press on Friday.
On Nov. 20, 2002, Scobey wrote Frist that 14,781 shares of HCA were sold, along with three other investments. The same day, Scobey wrote that four other investments were sold, none of them HCA stock.
On May 16, 2002, Scobey advised Frist that four investments were contributed to a Frist
blind trust, including HCA stock valued at $500,000 to $1 million. A second letter the same day mentions the same four investments going into a different trust, but with different valuations, including HCA stock valued at $250,000 to $500,000.
On Jan. 14, 2002, a trustee for Frist's children notified the secretary of the Senate that two investments were added to the blind trusts of Frist's sons Jonathan and Bryan — including HCA stock valued at $5,000 to $10,000. It was not clear whether Frist received a copy of the letter.
Senator Frist 2003 statement and the blind trust statements gotten by AP are absolutely contradictory. If true the Senator is lying, and recent sales of HCA stock by other corporation officials and him look awfully damning.
The Senator was a yet unannounced GOP candidate for President. This in no way can help him even if exonerated. I'll reserve final judgement but this smells to me. You'd think Frist would be smarter, but powerful people make dumb decisions regularly. To me it don't matter Democrat or Republican, I don't like corruption or politicians flouting the laws.
Again the laws of insider trading are murky to me, but this is a matter for prosecutors to look into. I have to agree with Captain Ed, Bill Frist should step down as Senate Majority Leader while this investigation plays out. The Republicans don't need this albatros hanging over their heads with the mid-term elections approaching.
The Washington Post reported the following yesterday.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, a potential presidential candidate in 2008, sold all his stock in his family's hospital corporation about two weeks before it issued a disappointing earnings report and the price fell nearly 15 percent.
Frist held an undisclosed amount of stock in Hospital Corporation of America, based in Nashville, the nation's largest for-profit hospital chain. On June 13, he instructed the trustee managing the assets to sell his HCA shares and those of his wife and children, said Amy Call, a spokeswoman for Frist.
Frist's shares were sold by July 1 and those of his wife and children by July 8, Call said. The trustee decided when to sell the shares, and the Tennessee Republican had no control over the exact time they were sold, she said.
HCA shares peaked at midyear, climbing to $58.22 a share on June 22. After slipping slightly for two weeks, the price fell to $49.90 on July 13 after the company announced its quarterly earnings would not meet analysts' expectations. On Tuesday, the shares closed at $48.76.
The value of Frist's stock at the time of the sale was not disclosed. Earlier this year, he reported holding blind trusts valued at $7 million to $35 million.
Blind trusts are used to avoid conflicts of interest. Assets are turned over to a trustee who manages them without divulging any purchases or sales and reports only the total value and income earned to the owner.
To keep the trust blind, Frist was not allowed to know how much HCA stock he owned, Call said, but he was allowed to ask for all of it to be sold.
This may or may not be insider trading. Further proof would be needed. You would think someone like Frist would know better but of course there are plenty of politicians who don't think they need to play by the rules they help to create.
What this story does is give the Democrats ammunition against Frist if he runs for President in 2008. The timing of the stock sale rightly or wrongly is going to look suspicious.
Professor Bainbridge has an excellent write up on insider trading laws related to the Frist story. However the laws did make my eyes glaze over. Only lawyers can understand laws this technical and I think I have a decent lay knowledge of the law.
I'd just like to remember where I read a saying. It went something like- If you have to write down your ethics rules the battle is already lost.
Traffic Jam- Outside the Beltway
I blogged before about how a Southern Illinois graduate student fooled the school newspaper into printing letters from a girl whose Kodee father Sgt Dan Kennings was supposedly serving in Iraq. This hoax went on for two years till the 'soldier' supposedly died and the Chicago Tribune did some elementary fact checking. It was soon discovered that Sgt Dan Kennings never existed.
Today's Chicago Tribune reports that the SIU Carbondale police department is investigating whether any laws were broken during the perpertration of the Kennings hoax.
The Southern Illinois University Carbondale Police Department is investigating the "Sgt. Dan Kennings" hoax to determine whether anyone broke the law in carrying on the two-year ruse about a phony soldier in Iraq and his daughter, the campus police chief said Tuesday.
SIU police have interviewed "some of the people involved," said SIU Public Safety Director Todd Sigler. They also are collecting documents, including e-mails, to help figure out whether Jaimie Reynolds or anyone else profited from the hoax, which played out in the pages of the student newspaper, the Daily Egyptian.
Investigators are piecing together various deceptions carried out since May 6, 2003, when former Daily Egyptian reporter Michael Brenner published his first story about Kennings going off to war in Iraq, leaving his 8-year-old daughter Kodee behind with Kennings' stepbrother and his wife. Many people in the community responded sympathetically to the story and letters--ostensibly from Kodee to her father--that the paper subsequently published.
"It's a bit of a unique situation, so we're moving at a very deliberate, methodical pace," Sigler said. "The devil will be in the details with this."
First comment. The campus police or the Carbondale city police are investigating? Obviously campus police don't have arrest powers.
But what crimes were committed?
A local firefighter said he gave the child toys, and the girl said she remembers members of a Detroit church giving her envelopes containing small amounts of cash during visits in December and May. A lawyer for the Detroit World Outreach ministry said the church did not give any money, but individuals in the congregation may have made contributions.
As despicable as fooling a church congregation is, I don't know if it builds to being an actual crime. My church congregation here in Florida was fooled by a hoax a few years back. This is not as uncommon as you may think but it is disgusting however.
Reading the whole the whole Kennings affair, you sometimes have to shake your head at how gullible people can be. I can understand a little girl thinking a documentary was being shot. But adults? The college students are a little more understandable, they let their political views color their reporting. Just like much of the MSM today. Click here for an example.
The Tribune article went on.
Reynolds has said there was no financial motive to the hoax, and that she was trying to help her reporter friend Brenner concoct a heart-rending story that might advance his career.
In a phone interview Tuesday, Brenner again denied vehemently that he was anything other than a misled reporter who never bothered to check the facts of the story.
"I'm so sick of being crucified when I am the victim of this whole thing," he said. "I'm really getting worn out talking to the media."
For the moment I believe Reynolds. I don't think she did it for financial gain. Rather Ms. Reynolds did it to get attention. Something she is getting plenty of now but not of the type she wants.
As to Michael Brenner, I have a much harder time believing in his innocence. The first reason is his reporting on Kodee and her father.
The story the Daily Egyptian published reads as if Brenner was on the scene of the emotional parting between father and daughter at Fort Campbell, Ky.Following is an excerpt from Brenner's Daily Egyptian story:
"In an attempt to delay his departure, Kodee swiped his helmet and refused to let go, saying he could not leave without his helmet.
Ã¬Still in tears, Kennings took his helmet back from his 8-year-old daughter, but he still could not convince her he had to go. She refused to let go of his arms, and pleaded with her father.
Ã¬Ã«Please donÃt leave,Ã Kodee begged. Ã«IÃll be good if you stay. I wonÃt get in trouble
During the Friday interview, Brenner defended the style of writing he had used in the story."It was the style going around the newsroom at the time," Brenner said.
So he gives a first accounting tale of the emotional separation. Now Brenner is saying that was a stylistic selection. He lied therefore in his reporting, why are we to believe he had no part in the story?
There's also something out of the original Tribune story.
Tribune reporters continued asking questions, and some students and a faculty member were growing increasingly hostile because of suggestions that Kennings did not exist. By Tuesday night, however, Brenner was pacing nervously outside a Dairy Queen in Carterville, Ill., talking to Hastings on his cell phone.
He handed the phone to a Tribune reporter, and Hastings said she would come to the Dairy Queen and listen to questions.Brenner, 25, said he was still convinced of Kennings' existence and defended Hastings for trying to protect a little girl.
Hastings pulled into the parking lot in the same red car she'd driven to the memorial service. She was told that the military denied Kennings' existence and that the name Colleen Hastings appeared in no public-records databases in Illinois. She was asked for a driver's license and for a death certificate for Kennings.
With each question, Hastings shook her head no.After Brenner spoke to her for a minute alone, she drove off.
This meeting sounds suspicious unless the non-responses from Reynolds are her reacting to the hoax and her embarassment in taking part in it. In my opinion these two are were working together. Brenner who was promoted to editor of the Daily Egyptian after the first Kodee story was published, had something to gain from the whole affair.
After finishing his studies at SIU, Brenner went to work for a newspaper in Oregon. He quit a few months back. The reason? He wanted to be closer to Kodee.
Brenner recently quit his job as a sportswriter with the East Oregonian, a job he landed shortly after donning his gown and receiving his diploma in the December 2004 SIUC graduation ceremonies.
He said he left the Oregon job after only a few months because he wanted to spend time with his family in Illinois - and with the girl he said he had known as "Kodee Kennings."
Just an incredible story. Mr. Brenner should take up fiction writing.
Goes to former Southern Illinois University student Jaimie Reynolds. She hoodwinked SIU student newspaper The Daily Egyptian into believing a story about a little girl and her letters to her father serving in Iraq. I posted part of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch article below, it's truly incredible. The people at the college newspaper are almost as big a knuckleheads, they never bothered to do any elementary fact checking in the two years this story ran.
Hat tip- Michelle Malkin
CARBONDALE, Ill. - For two years, Carbondale residents have been riveted by the writing of a little girl imploring her father in Iraq: "Don't die, OK?"
Only now are they learning there was never any danger of that.
The Daily Egyptian, Southern Illinois University's student-run newspaper, today will admit to its readers that the saga - of a little girl's published letters to her father serving in Iraq - was apparently an elaborate hoax perpetrated by a woman who claimed to be the girl's aunt.
In fact, the newspaper will report today, the man identified as the girl's father was never in Iraq, and it was the woman who apparently wrote the letters and regular columns that were published under the little girl's name - and even impersonated the girl in telephone interviews.
I'm still blogging on the Hurricane. Since my original post became long and unwieldly I decided to continue in a second post.
7:30 p.m. update- Hurricane Katrina has started coming ashore. The eye according to the National Hurricane Center made landfall in the Hallandale Beach/North Miami Beach area.
...EYE OF KATRINA CURRENTLY MAKING LANDFALL BETWEEN HALLANDALE BEACHAND NORTH MIAMI BEACH WITH 80 MPH WINDS...PORT EVERGLADES JUSTREPORTED GUSTS TO 92 MPH WINDS...
The NHC also reported that Katrina was near 25.9 Longitude 80.1 Latitude. The storm has definitely shifted to the south. Most of Palm Beach County is going to miss the brunt of Katrina.
Two people were killed in Broward County. Anyone reading this and in Katrina's path stay indoors. Its too dangerous to go out.
Fellow blogger Florida Cracker isn't as fortunate. She is very close to the storm's path. Please keep her and the Cracker family in your prayers.
9 p.m. update- The local televisisions here are broadcasting regular programming. That tells you what they think of Katrina now.
The wind is still gusting here. A power interuption isn't impossible. I think if we make it to morning we'll be fine.
Latest position is- THE 9 PM EDT POSITION...25.8 N... 80.4 W. MOVEMENTTOWARD...WEST NEAR 6 MPH. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS... 80 MPH.MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE... 984 MB.
I will keep posting updates till bed-time around 11 p.m.
August 26th 10:30 a.m. Update- I went to bed earlier than expected last night. Been putting the house back together. Also I'm still down from yesterday's news. That is why I didn't update till now.
Katrina is pretty much through with Palm Beach County. The sun came out at a little past 8 this morning.
As for myself, we have rolled back the shutters and restored the house to normal. The only damage we have is an uprooted papaya true. That's insignifigant, we count our blessings here. Maybe my baby angel Daniel protected his parents. Today and yesterday mark 31 months since my son was born and then died.
A friend who owns a small Asian market in Lantana, lost power at the store. They have no insurance, so could have suffered losses from spoiled food. Fortunately their power was restored last night.
My sister-in-law in Miramar had power as of 10 p.m. last night. Haven't spoke to her this morning yet. Leonette likes to sleep late.
It appears blogger Florida Cracker weathered the storm. Keep praying for her and all South Florida residents.
The Sun-Sentinel reports four people having died because of Katrina. Lots of roof and tree damage in Dade and Broward. A highway overpass collapsed in Miami but no one was hurt. A family of five took their boat out of Marthon and is now missing.
Florida Power and Light has over a million customers without power. The company warns that people that it could be a week before electricity is restored.
Latest Katrina location update- REPEATING THE 9 AM EDT POSITION...25.2 N... 82.0 W. MOVEMENT TOWARD...WEST NEAR 6 MPH. MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS... 75 MPH. That is 45 miles northwest of Key West. She is expected to turn Northwest towards the Florida panhandle. So Florida is not yet done with this storm.
As can be seen Katrina turned dramatically to the Southwest. This wasn't unexpected, some computer models had the storm doing this. The discussion posts at NHC are very good for detailed explanations of how forecasters predict these storms.
In all I think South Florida was pretty fortunate in regards to Katrina. The damage in Dade and Broward can be fixed. This wasn't an Andrew like storm.
I've decided to do regular updates on the tropical storm and its path towards Florida. That's till it either passes or I lose power.
Note- I have continued updating in a second post. Click here.
10 a.m.- Rather calm but overcast in Lantana Florida. We've had some squall like weather periodically but nothing lasting more than five or ten minutes.
Power is constant. No flickering as of this time.
I rely on the National Hurricane Center, plus the PB Post and Sun-Sentinel for updates on the hurricane. Local television reporting gets to be repetative after a while. They are often misleading and spectacular when reporting also. I will trust what I get from the papers and the NHC above anything I hear on the tube.
The most recent 11 a.m. advisory is up.
AT 11 AM EDT...1500Z...THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM KATRINA WASLOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 26.2 NORTH... LONGITUDE 79.3 WEST OR ABOUT 55 MILES... 85 KM... EAST OF FORT LAUDERDALE FLORIDA.
KATRINA IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 6 MPH... 9 KM/HR.
26.2 Longitude puts the storm about due east of Deerfield Beach(26n19, 80w06. Deerfield Beach High School is my alma mata) or 25 miles south of where I live.
That puts us close. Katrina could still drift north or even south but there isn't much room between the storm and the coast. I won't be holding my breath for any sudden change south. Besides, that would push it into the path of my sister-in-law in Pembroke Pines. (26n0, 80w13)
Right now the concern I have is the slow movement of Katrina. That's going to prolong and deepen the storm's impact on South Florida. Frances last year was a slow moving storm and did more damage than Jeanne did.
11:45 a.m. Update- Wind is picking up a little.
12:17 p.m.- If anyone is wondering, I'm still waiting for the results of my MRI. Boynton Beach Open imaging which is the same company as Concept another medical testing firm has had a history of infuriating me in the past. Right now they are still trying to find the report for my doctor. These people may be my next knucklehead winner.
Weather conditions are the same. Dreary, light or little rain. The wind is gusty at times.
1:45 p.m. update- Here is the latest advisory. They are coming every two hours instead of every three now.
AT 1 PM EDT...1700Z...REPORTS FROM NOAA DOPPLER RADARS AND A NOAA
RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT INDICATE THE CENTER OF TROPICAL STORM
KATRINA WAS LOCATED NEAR LATITUDE 26.2 NORTH... LONGITUDE 79.5 WEST ...OR ABOUT 40 MILES EAST-NORTHEAST OF FORT LAUDERDALE FLORIDA AND ABOUT 40 MILES EAST-SOUTHEAST OF BOCA RATON FLORIDA.
KATRINA IS MOVING TOWARD THE WEST NEAR 6 MPH.
REPORTS FROM A NOAA RECONNAISSANCE AIRCRAFT INDICATE MAXIMUM
SUSTAINED WINDS HAVE INCREASED TO NEAR 65 MPH...WITH HIGHER
Weather conditions are the same here. Location hasn't changed relative to where I live. We are in for a ride as I am not feeling confident about this storm.
2:50 p.m.- Another update coming soon but I'm not expecting anything dramatic.
How do we stand down here? Flat footed as the comedian said. No, not really. Our yard is secure except for a few last minute items, namely patio chairs. Shutters are pulled but awaiting to be secured. It's a two person job. Our car will probably be pulled into the garage so that will need to be worked on.
Dear wife is still working. The shutters need someone on the inside and outside to be done properly. Her boss hasn't seen fit to call work for the day. Ugh but what can we do. No office tomorrow.
Unfortunately our bank already closed. Too late for us to cash the wife's paycheck. That will probably have to wait till Monday. We do have cash on hand though, $300 plus dollars. Other supplies are fine, though if we lose power we may bug out similiar to last year. Either to my sister-in-law's(In Miramar not Pembroke Pines) or an apartment in Miami. We have a boatload of food in our freezer, I rather not have it all spoil. Last year we were without power for over a week after Frances.
530 p.m.- Katrina is a hurricane now. Maximum sustained winds of 75 MPH.
We're shuttered up now. The garage just needs to be finished then we move our car in.
The weather has definitely deterioated. Winds are up to the 40's now, rain comes and goes but there have been only short downpours. According to Channel 25 there are now scattered power outages in the County. So far so good in the Lantana area for us and our friends.
A 5 p.m. advisory put Hurricane Katrina at 26.1 N... 79.9 W. and moving at 6 miles per hour. About thirty miles off the coast of Pompano Beach. The storm has drifted slightly south in the last advisory. That's good for me here but not so good for Broward County. The slow movement of this storm is going to wreak as much havoc as the wind.
I got to try finding out when the last direct hit by hurricane on Broward County occured. It has to be before 1970.
I got my MRI results. The post is here.
Katrina blogging continued here.
Breakfast- Basil's Blog
On Monday I had an MRI. I wish the news was good.
There is a tumor on both my pancreas and adrenal glands. A needle biopsy will have to be done to determine if its malignant or benign. Dr. Nguyen has written a prescription for it but due to the hurricane I can't get it till Monday.
This could possibly be metastisis of my malignant melanoma. I'm more than aware of the survival statistics of this cancer. It is very depressing. Please keep me in your prayers.
Hat tip- Poliblog
NBCSports.com news services
Updated: 12:00 p.m. ET Aug. 25, 2005
A performance-enhancing substance? Perhaps not. But an affinity for milk has earned a Florida Marlins batboy a six-game suspension from the team, according to the Miami Herald.
The newspaper reported that the unidentified batboy accepted a dare from Dodgers pitcher Brad Penny to try to drink a gallon of milk in less than an hour without throwing up.
According to the report, Penny offered the boy $500 if he could accomplish the task. The Marlins would not comment on the suspension to the Herald, but the boy will not be allowed to work during the upcoming six-game homestand.
Penny was angry about the suspension.
''It's kind of ridiculous that you get a 10-game suspension for steroids and a six-game suspension for milk,'' Penny told the Herald.
Michelle Malkin is back from a well deserved vacation. While Michelle was gone, a group of guest bloggers kept the website up to date on recent events.
However there is a small change at Michellemalkin.com. Scroll beneath the search engine on the left side of the webpage and you find an advertisement. For the NEW YORK TIMES. Heavens to Betsy! Don't worry Michelle will not be corrupted by this.
Maybe the Palm Beach Post will advertise here one day. Yes siree, and I have a bridge in Leyte Philippines to sell you. The price is so reasonable......
Today's winner is National Institute of Health employee Michelle Ledgister. Unhappy with the tax assessment on her home by the Broward County Property Appraiser's Office, Ms. Ledgister threatened an attack of anthrax spores on the office. According to the FBI Ledgister said.
"It's Michelle Ledgister ..... NIH is located where infectious agents are, and you guys now have anthrax spores. Toodles,"
Gives her name, where she works. Michelle Ledgister is a really outrageously dumb Knucklehead winner.
Click here to read the entire Sun-Sentinel article.
There is no doubt any more. We're in for a ride from this storm. How much of a ride and if we'll get hurricane conditions here are still unknown.
Keep us(home included) in your prayers. Thanks.