Thursday, June 30, 2005

My New enemy

This is a battle that must be won at all costs.

"The blog" (notice the arrogance) is a blog ran by Cube. Not me, but a person who as decided to steal my namesake. He is now a professed enemy of mine, and most be removed.

I will probably just post random insults in his comments aimed at his heritage, until he changes his name.

cube (the real cube)

my next book

and hero   

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Zach and Love In Action Update

Latest news in the TN investigation into Zach's plight of being in a school, that is trying to make him ungay.

Source:"Tennessee officials closed an investigation into a so-called ex-gay ministry because of a lack of evidence to support child abuse allegations. But the Memphis organization that says instilling Christian beliefs can keep gays from acting on their homosexual desires continues to be the center of controversy.

I wonder what the Memphis blogsphere will do now. They got the attention of the authorities, but then the authorities told them there was nothing to see or do. The liberal section of the Memphis blogsphere might miss this news item because it was on drudge, heh.

Previous Posts
More on Zack and Love In Action



I made a poem about Paranoia.

twelve o'clock
two o'clock, twelve o'clock, ten...

twelve o'clock four o'clock, twelve o'clock, eight...
twelve o'clock

Who is watching my six?

twelve o'clock
two o'clock, twelve o'clock, ten...

twelve o'clock four o'clock, twelve o'clock, eight...
twelve o'clock

Who is watching my six?

I like it.


Send them emails or just send the spam

Tell the mayor of New London and its developer that what they’re doing is wrong! Click on the links below to e-mail the City Council and Corcoran Jennison what you think about condemning private property for private profit. Remember to be thoughtful, intelligent, and tasteful.

Mayor Jane L. Glover

Deputy Mayor William S. Morse

Councilor Jason Catala

Councilor Margaret Mary Curtin

Councilor Gerard J. Gaynor

Councilor Robert Pero

Councilor Elizabeth Sabilia

Corcoran Jennison

Marty Jones, President of Corcoran Jennison

via Castle Colition


It is because they are smarter than you....


"Oscar-winning director STEVEN SPIELBERG is baffled that fewer UFO sightings are made now than were made twenty years ago - because the technology to record would-be aliens is so commonplace today."

It is because the aliens have been monitoring us and they know that our cameras cannot be fooled by their limited technology any more, so they have started using their invis-Shields. Secondly, after their close calls and almost being exposed in the mid-50s they got a lot better at not crashing in the desert.

"Spielberg says, "There are millions of video cameras out there and they're picking up less videos of UFOs, alleged UFOs, than we picked up in the 1970s and 1980s. There's 150 per cent more cameras, so why are we getting less from up there?"

It is because they are smarter than you.

via drudge


John F. Kerry

John F. Kerry's open letter to the world. Let the fisking begin.

"The Bush administration is courting disaster with its current course - a course with no realistic strategy for reducing the risks to our soldiers and increasing the odds for success."

I guess training Iraqis to do the work our soldiers do is not a "realistic strategy for reducing the risks to our soldiers". Of course, I do not know if that would increase our odds for success, but I sure as hell know that it reduces the risks to our soldiers.

"The reality is that the Bush administration's choices have made Iraq into what it wasn't before the war - a breeding ground for jihadists. Today there are 16,000 to 20,000 jihadists and the number is growing."

I doubt that. First Iraq cannot be considered a breeding ground when many of those "jihadists" were not born and raised in Iraq. Secondly, he must not have read reports of Red-on-Red action (and that is not racist American Indian porn, that is the enemy fighting the enemy). That alone would keep the number from growing.

"Our mission in Iraq is harder because the administration ignored the advice of others, went in largely alone, underestimated the likelihood and power of the insurgency, sent in too few troops to secure the country, destroyed the Iraqi army through de-Baathification, failed to secure ammunition dumps, refused to recognize the urgency of training Iraqi security forces and did no postwar planning. A little humility would go a long way - coupled with a strategy to succeed."

Same sort of talk that lost him the election in the first place.

"The president must also announce immediately that the United States will not have a permanent military presence in Iraq. Erasing suspicions that the occupation is indefinite is critical to eroding support for the insurgency."

Hmmm...I would have thought that if you pointed out that we have had military bases in South Korea for nearly half a century and that we are not leaving that maybe they would just give up. Secondly, I really do not have a problem with having a "permanent military" presence in Iraq. They border Iran, an irate nuclear power, kind of like North Korea. We can just close some bases in the US, Europe, and move them to Iraq where they can actually do some good.

"We're doing our part: our huge military presence stands between the Iraqi people and chaos, and our special forces protect Iraqi leaders."

Wait, I thought you said we did not have enough troops in Iraq. You did, in THIS article. I quote, "...sent in too few troops to secure the country...” We have probably about the same or maybe a little bit less troops in Iraq than when we took the place over. This is not counting the Iraqis that have trained and which we have added to the resource pool. If anything it is the Iraqis themselves who stand between their selves and chaos, not us.

"If Iraqis adopt a constitution and hold elections as planned, support for the insurgency should fall and Iraqi security forces should be able to take on more responsibility. It will also set the stage for American forces to begin to come home."

What of this have we not done? They only part we are missing is the constitution, we have already had elections. So bush is already doing what Kerry is suggesting.... odd

"The administration must work with the Iraqi government to establish a multinational force to help protect its borders. Such a force, if sanctioned by the United Nations Security Council, could attract participation by Iraq's neighbors and countries like India."

So now Iraq should ask the UN for help. The UN could have helped anywhere from 1980 to present if it wanted to, but did not.

"The deployment of capable security forces is critical, but it alone will not end the insurgency, as the administration would have us believe. Hamstrung by its earlier lack of planning and overly optimistic predictions for rebuilding Iraq, the administration has failed to devote equal attention to working with the Iraqi government on the economic and political fronts. Consequently, reconstruction is lagging even in the relatively secure Shiite south and Kurdish north. If Iraqis, particularly Sunnis who fear being disenfranchised, see electricity flowing, jobs being created, roads and sewers being rebuilt and a democratic government being formed, the allure of the insurgency will decrease."

I actually agree with the general idea of this statement. Though I think that it would be better to get the economy up and going and then fix the things as the Iraq government has the cash. It will cost us less in the long run and Iraq will be stronger because of it. Then again, certain things need to be rebuilt, especially the ones that we blew up.

via drudge


Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Big money ideas

A TV show that expects you to pause.
With the advent of TiVo's and other similar technology, I suspect a new form of TV show\movie\game might evolve. I do not know the exact form that this will come out in. A few possible ideas. A detective show that tells you to pause before the killer is caught During the pause you are supposed to figure out who done it. If this show was leveraged with HD technology, you could even expect the users to pause during the show to examine evidence that would not be seen on a normal TV show. You could have parties to watch the show, it could be social TV.

Pants that are waterproof on the inside to keep the urine to soaking through.
I know this happens to you to, so do not try to deny it. This could really save your butt if you are in an interview situation where you pants need to be urine free, but you do not have time to do a complete shake.

Toilets with arm rests
They do not have to be really comfortable, they can be built a lot like airline seat arm rests: Not comforatable, but they get the job done.


Friend's email

I have got a friend who is working in Kenya for the summer he sent this email to me and several other people.

Hello everyone,

I’ve been in Kenya for three weeks now and I wanted to update everybody. The transition has been smooth, so far. My flight went well, I have a nice place to stay, and work has been great. I want to tell you all about work, but unfortunately the nature of the work I am doing at IJM Kenya keeps me from saying too much. Most of what I am doing deals with child victims of rape. A statistic that I heard before I came to Kenya is that, in the developing world, 40% of women
will be sexually abused before they reach the age of 18. With a problem this pervasive, we are obviously limited as to how much we can do, but we are working everyday to bring as many perpetrators to justice as we can. There are two stories I want to share with you that really highlight the problems Kenyans are facing as they try to create a more just and prosperous society.

My second week here, I had the opportunity to visit a Kenyan jail. I expected to find dilapidated conditions and overcrowding, which I did. What I did not expect to find was a cordial relationship between the guards and the prisoners. When we walked into the prison there were eight of us; six from IJM, the commandant of the prison, and one guard. We came to a courtyard to find hundreds of prisoners just sitting around, waiting to be taken to court. They were not handcuffed or restrained in any way, and only two guards secured them. I was overwhelmed--the prisoners had the numbers to overpower us and do whatever they wanted with us. The Kenyans, on the other hand, just walked calmly through the mass of prisoners. I later found that the guards were sympathetic to the plight of the prisoners. Backlog is a huge problem in Kenyan courts, so most prisoners can expect to wait one to two years before their cases go to trial. Many were in jail for minor crimes, but they couldn’t afford bail, so they waited in jail until the court found time for them. The guards talked openly about how most of the prisoners had no business being in the jail. The guards even joked around with the prisoners. The facility we visited was built for 2,000 people yet it housed over 5,000, and only 800 of
them had actually been convicted. Somehow, in these conditions, the guards and the prisoners were able to forge a bond that one would never find in an American jail.

The second story comes from one of my trips outside of Nairobi. I went with the director of my office to visit a children’s officer in one of Kenya’s 9 provinces. In this particular province there are 4.5 million people, but there are only 9 children’s officers. That means only one children’s officer for every 500,000 people. In addition, there is only one vehicle between the 9 officers. Many officers have to take buses to get to the victims they are trying to help. There are many
compelling cases about which the officers can do nothing merely because they do not have the means to get to the child. The children’s officer we met had a heart to help every child in Kenya, but was increasingly frustrated because there was so little she could do. She complained about how hard it was to keep a children’s officer because the job was so emotionally overwhelming. Most of the officers leave within one or two years.

As you can see, Kenya faces a lot of problems. But the number of people trying to effectuate change has really struck me. There are so many Kenyans who want to make Kenya a better place; they just need the resources to do it. This email turned out longer than I wanted, but it
could have been ten times as long. I would appreciate your prayers in the coming weeks for me and for the hundreds of millions of people who are suffering from oppression across the world."

God bless,

Cube's friend


I think this is a winnable political strategy for the bush administration, but also a strategy that short changes the young worker.

"The fact that hard choices might have to be made has kept most of the politicians from tackling the issue head on even though a sensible compromise already exists and has been introduced. The DeMint plan - for the legislation's chief sponsor, Sen. Jim DeMint, R-SC -- recognizes the reality that the only way to keep Washington from spending our Social Security money is to take it away from them. The only real way to take it away from them is to put it into personal accounts.

With personal accounts, we, the working people, would own and control those accounts, and Congress wouldn't be able to touch the money. And with a safe mix of stocks and bonds, we would see real rates of return of at least 5 percent, and more likely 7 or 8 percent.

We would begin, slowly at first, to accumulate real wealth and start on the road to a secure, prosperous retirement. This approach is gradual and would give ample time for the financial markets to react and tweak administrative problems that may arise. Down the road, if things go smoothly, the accounts could be expanded to reform the entire program. In the short term, Congress is blocked from raiding any more of our money while workers can begin making a down payment on their future prosperity.

It's also good politics and it's good for the people, both current and future retirees. It doesn't make sense not to do it."

I agree with the phasing in idea. Markets do not like change. A large influx of cash could drive up prices and make things a little unstable. That would hurt the chances of keeping accounts private and people who would lose money in the unstable market. So I agree that the private accounts should be phased in, though I think 3-5 years is enough time to give the markets time to adjust.

While I would like for me to get all of my social security money back, I realize there is a small chance that would happen. If the above proposal is all I can get, I will take it.


Saturday, June 25, 2005

Road Trip

I will be going home this weekend, tune in Monday or Tuesday. Stay safe and watch you six.


If you make it they will buy it....

...Or not.

Source:"PC makers and distributors are holding back from buying the new alternative version of Windows XP that Europe's competition commissioner ordered Microsoft Corp. to offer as part of the punishment in the software maker's long antitrust battle with the European Union. Windows XP N was released to distributors last week in English, French, German, Italian and Spanish and will be available to the public in the next few weeks. Versions in 10 additional languages will be released in July. The world's largest software maker had to change its Windows operating system after EU antitrust regulators ruled last year that it abusively wielded its Windows monopoly and locked out competitors. Microsoft was fined a record euro497 million ($608 million)."

Microsoft got fined, had to develop brand new software, sell that software, and now no one wants to buy it. Next thing, Europe is going to make Microsoft remove Internet explorer from XP. Which to get IE you will have to download it from Microsoft.



Source: "MOSCOW -- Lawmakers are considering an electoral amendment next week that could open the way for President Vladimir Putin to run for a third term, prompting the opposition to accuse his supporters of trying to cling to power.

Putin has repeatedly said he will not change the constitution, which bars presidents from serving more than two consecutive terms."

previous post:"What is the over\under on Putin declaring a state of emergency and extending his presidency past the term limit?"

This is bad news.


Kelo - the future fight

The battle for property rights has been lost at the national level. While this is not surprising considering the case history concerning the topic of eminent domain, it is still disheartening. There are several things that this ruling has impressed on me.

First, judicial nominees are important. I now support whatever action the republican want to take to keep the nominees flowing. Especially, nominees appointed directly to the Supreme Court.

Secondly, I now support term limits on all elected positions and all appointed positions. This problem stems from the fact that men like power and do not give it up easily. You have an old name suffering from CANCER on the Supreme Court, for crying out loud. Is he going to die in office? There is no way the supreme court can react to the public pressure when public out cry over topics like these falls on deaf (literally) ears.

Thirdly, the fight has now gone to the state level. Stronger laws must be passed at the state level. Say Uncle offers this advice, "The fight isn’t over, it just got local. We need to press local and state officials to pass laws that restrict eminent domain. That’s the way you win this one. And it will be a long haul that will probably take decades."

I have a few comments to make to about Uncle's statement. I agree that we will have to take gains on this issue wherever we can. If we can make local laws against it, fine, but we should concentrate on getting laws passed at the state level. I think that is where they will do the most good and protect the most people. Finally, this ruling is going to leave some people out in the cold, but in this case only those who fight it can be saved and only you can fight for yourself. I, also, have a serious problem fighting fights I should not have to fight at the state level. Though we do have a few friends in TN.

Fourthly, there is going to be an upsurge of cases like this because many towns were waiting on this ruling to decide if what they were doing was legal or not. Once that initial boom dies down, the rate of seizures will decline. I think they will then slowly start to rise as developers and cities being to position their selves to take advantage of this ruling.

Fifthly, Say Uncle also says this:
"Also, to my gunblogger buddies who are stating it’s time to hoist the black flag, quoting Jefferson, and calling for revolution: Put up or shut up. Unless you’re on your way to Connecticut right now, the rhetoric will do more harm than good. Actually, being on your way to Connecticut will probably do more harm than good. That’s not to say I don’t appreciate or understand the sentiment, but the fact is that it’s not going to happen and if it did happen, it wouldn’t work. People will shake their heads, nay-say, and bitch but nothing will be done when the bulldozers level Suzette Kelo’s home. People won’t even defend their dogs when the state comes to take them by force . Sure, I made a half-hearted comment about sending guns to Connecticut but its pointless because I can’t send them balls.

Folks can entertain these fantasies of a group of freedom fighters engaging the bureaucratic machine but you will lose. You will die or be imprisoned. Period. The cause needs you to be alive and free not in jail."

I would agree that now is not the time to fight, but it is the time for political action. Though I fully believe that people will be shot over this eventually, it is just a matter of time. You can screw over a lot of people, but when you start messing with their homes (and by extension their families who live in the homes) they will get real upset very quickly. Eventually, the ones wronged will seek revenge.

As a corollary, to the idea of fighting, how much injustice are you willing to watch before you actually step up and take action? The local government can remove you from you land and give it to another private person, legally. I would suggest now would be a good time to buy that gun you don't own, but support in theory. You should also draw a line in the sand on how far is too far for the government to go. My next gun purchase was going to be a shotgun; I think I am going to get a good rifle.

Sixthly, It is time to remember you history lesson.

"The charges of usual offices have been greatly increased; and, new, expensive and oppressive offices have been multiplied.

The judges of admiralty and vice-admiralty courts are empowered to receive their salaries and fees from the effects condemned by themselves. The officers of the customs are empowered to break open and enter houses without the authority of any civil magistrate founded on legal information.
Humble and reasonable petitions from the representatives of the people have been fruitless.
By several acts of parliament made in the fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, and eighth years of your majesty's reign, duties are imposed on us, for the purpose of raising a revenue, and the powers of admiralty and vice-admiralty courts are extended beyond their ancient limits, whereby our property is taken from us without our consent, the trial by jury in many civil cases is abolished, enormous forfeitures are incurred for slight offences, vexatious informers are exempted from paying damages, to which they are justly liable, and oppressive security is required from owners before they are allowed to defend their right.

The political wars we are about to fight have already been fought, just no one remembers.

More on Zack and Love In Action

Back ground here.

An major update to this story happened when "Tennessee has began an investigation in response to allegations of child abuse at Love in Action, a Memphis facility that advertises homosexual conversion therapy for adolescents, according to the state department of health."

The Memphis blogsphere has succeeded in getting this story in the mainstream. Congratulations. Of course if the investigation discovers nothing, I wonder if they will shut up. Of course if the investigation ends up fining, sanctioning, or even shutting down Love in action, they would have succeeded in their goal. I actually think they did an impressive job of mobilizing support and getting the story heard, and by doing that has won a major victory. The rest is really our of their hands.

I first heard about this on the news this morning where it stated that a complaint was filed an anonymous person. I doubt that person actually had anything to do with love in action, but they have succeeded in their goal of getting an investigation.

What is important about this story is that this is the first case I have seen of a local group of bloggers (which I read and follow, but don't know any) actually push a story by brute force into the spotlight. After hearing the report on the news this morning, which left out any mention of blogers, I suspect this might be happening a lot.


Friday, June 24, 2005

Kelo et al v. City of New London, 04-108

Kind of like the death of a friend. I do not have much to say, but I thought the supreme court was going to fall on the right side on this one. I guess I had misplaced my faith in that group of people.

Say Uncle - who have been covering this story and others like it for as long as I have been reading his blog.

"How a private development could possibly be justified as public use is beyond me. Worth noting that the conservative judges came down on the right side of things.


Nashville files - this was the first report I read of the decision.

"More: Quotes of initial reactions from people talking to me...

"Time for blood to water the trees, baby!"

"We've now turned into a communistic state!"

"This, if anything, is deserving of a bullet to someone's head.""

I am not much of a flag burning, property devastating (and when I say devastate, I mean making it total unlivable, undevelopable for as long as I humanly can, and making the clean up cost nearly unbearable for whoever owns the property.), though I am getting really pissed off recently.


Thursday, June 23, 2005

American political parties and their inconsistencies surrounding evolution

Over the years the political parties of America have staked out their political positions on nearly all aspects of American life. Some of those positions have involved the teaching of evolution. Evolution has been a hotly debated topic for the past 80 years. To this day schools are still arguing over how it should be taught (The schools lost the battle of it should be taught or not.)

This post is not meant to be a history lesson, but just a big highlighter pointing out areas in which the different parties are inconsistent and could realign their views on certain issues to be more ideology consistent across a wider range of issues. I will state the party and then the party’s position. These will be grossly over simplified for times sake. I assume my readers will catch the inconsistencies.

Evolution in Schools
Democrats - For the teaching of evolution

Republicans - Against the teaching of evolution, or at a minimum wants stickers on books stating that evolution is a theory. Kind of like the theory of gravity.

Evolution in the natural environment
Democrats - Against any species dieing because it cannot evolve (i.e. pandas, who will not screw to save their species). Don't adapt and humans will make sure you survive somehow.

Republicans - For evolution in the natural environment (i.e. spotted owl). Adapt or die.

Evolution in business
Democrats - Against natural progression of business. Don't adapt and allow the government to support you and\or bail you our (i.e. airlines).

Republicans - For the natural progression of business with limited governmental intervention. Adapt or die.

Evolution in abortion
Democrats - For the human (unnatural) control of the birth process.

Republicans - For the natural control of the birth process, even to the extreme of not using birth control in some cases.

Evolution in Lifestyle choices
Democrats - Against anything you can do that might kill you, if you are stupid enough to do it to fast or do to much of it (i.e. Driving to fast, using guns, eating, and smoking)

Republicans - All for allowing people to do what ever they want, even if they do somthing stupid and it kills them.

Evolution in View of life
Democrats - Democrats view life as an easy trip where you get lots of vacations and many things are given to you because it is your right.

Republicans - Life is short and hard like a bodybuilding elf, and if you do not do something stupid you will most likely live though it still will require work.

Evolution in Education
Democrats - Everyone must learn, even if that means the smart ones are never taught anything they did not already know. The government pays for education.

Republicans - If you are too stupid to learn, you do not go to college. If you do go to college, pay for it yourself and hope that you make enough money that you are able to pay it back at some point in time.

Evolution in medical care
Democrats - Everyone gets free medical care

Republicans - You get medical care if you can pay for it. You can pay for it, if you make lots of money. You can makes lots of money if you went to a school and did well enough to get a job.

Feel free to add your own in the comment section.


Boy survives four-day ordeal in Utah mountains

I heard the kid had put on about five pounds. I also heard that the kid was almost finished with his village and had gained five wives though trade and commerce.

I also heard he raided the villages with the homemade weapons he had made.

""He [the boy scout] had two thoughts going through his head all the time," she said. "Toby's always told him that 'If you get lost, stay on the trail.' So he stayed on the trail. We've also told him don't talk to strangers ... when an ATV or horse came by he got off the trail ... when they left, he got back on the trail.""

This kid got lucky. Glad he was found.


Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Jobs that Mexicans can do

In order to do my small part to help the global economy, I have decided to dedicate this post to "Jobs that Mexicans can do". Before I delve into the details, I would like to do a bit of explanation concerning the title of this post.

For one, "Jobs" means work in which you get paid legally for and is a legal job by a person who can work in the united states legally. Secondly, "Mexicans" is really an all inclusive term to refer to all unskilled workers that are in the states legally or illegally and do not speak English or even read well (This group would include most highschool drop outs).

Airline Stewardesses - first the ability to speak English is really only needed if you are doing the whole safety demonstration. Which in many cases that demonstration is done by video with bad computer graphics anyways. I would think that you would only need one head stewardess who could speak English to handle this part of the flight.

In all other areas, Mexicans would be superior to the overpaid stewardesses. For one Mexicans are smaller than average so they would save on fuel, space, and be able to walk through the aisles easier. Secondly, we all know when it comes to manual labor Mexicans work about twice as fast as normal humans. Which pushing the cart down the aisle is basically light manual labor, so Mexicans might be able to do the job 4 to 5 times as fast. Thirdly, Do you ever talk to you stewardess? I don't. To me that shows that the ability to speak English on flights is overrated. As long as Mexicans understand the word "Coke" and other simple words, I think that is all the English skills that they will need.

Mailmen - Do you need to read to deliver the mail or even speak English? Here Mexicans are competing on a level playing ground with other Americans. Their numbers are the same as ours, so addresses, which are composed mostly of numbers, are easy for them to read. Anything they cannot figure out, they will have to spend a little extra time looking for. Which since they did all the other mail twice as fast, they will have plenty of time to find the one house they missed. Secondly, while the first few days as a mailman might be rough for our new immigrant postal employees, over time the job will grow easier, because the houses do not move, for the most part.

To help American please send me more ideas to post.


Saturday, June 18, 2005

Do I smell like dog.

During the month of July, I will be securing the premises that dogs live in for at least two weeks out of the month.

The first security session will be with the original pair of dogs that I am familiar with. The thing I am not looking forward to the most with that pair is the getting woken up early in the morning. The thing I am looking forward to most is hosing them down with water then taking the for a run until the are real tired and do not wake me up in the morning.

The second security session will be with one of these guys: English Bulldogs.

"also poor eyesight, very susceptible to heat stroke in warm weather or hot rooms and cars."

Wow, I am glad that I read this. I would not leave a dog in a car, but I might have taken him for a longer walk than he was used in the July heat. Though it sounds like he is my type of dog.

"Its digestive system is very active and may be offensive to people with sensitive noses."

I take that back.

Living Conditions The English Bulldog is good for apartment life. They are very inactive indoors and will do okay without a yard. This breed is an indoor dog. Bulldogs do best in temperate climates as the breed can chill easily in cold weather and have trouble cooling off in very hot weather.

How can this dog be good for small places, if it farts more than I do.

some adult Bulldogs would just as soon not take any exercise, while others are full of energy. In any case all Bulldogs will stay fitter if given some regular. Fit English Bulldogs are capable of moving very quickly for short periods of time.

Though I am starting to like this breed

While doing research on dogs I found several "relationship" issues with the last dogs that I provided security for. The dogs do not respect me as an "Alpha Dog". Though I am not quite sure those two dogs realize that they are dogs, and not just hairy humans.

For a laugh check out this breed: French Bulldogs.


Joke of the Day

Straight from the vortex of the cube.

There was a white feminist, white gay man, and Al Sharpton on the Titanic 2. As the boat begin to sink the three started to argue over who should go first into the lifeboat.

The feminist said that she should go first. She based her decision on historical precedence and the fact that men oppress women throughout the world. Since the other two were men they should allow the woman to take her natural position and should follow the woman as she led them onto the boat.

The gay man said that the woman was wrong because she was enforcing hetronormative cognitive decision models on the group and that he should be allowed to go first. He cited the fact that he was unable legally marry and adopt children as examples of discrimination. He also cited the fact that he was born differently from both of them and had unique genes, which should be preserved for the benefit of the human race.

Al Sharpton then told them that they were both wrong. Al said that he should be allowed to go first because of his minority status. He explained who women are not minorities nor oppressed when they make up just over half of the population. He also explained that they white gay man owed him for what the gay man's ancestors had done to his ancestors.

Question: Who got onto the boat?
Answer: No one, the boat ended up sinking.


Playing the numbers by understanding the data

One of my dreams one day is to build a suite of programs used to bet on the outcome of sports games and win. I do know that it is possible to store any and all statistics related to a particular player. You can keep information about teams (which are made up of players) and actually play the teams against each other in a fantasy statistics game. This module would also have a component to run simulations at the team level that would ignore the gritty information at the player level.

Another part would track my betting history and my total expenses and my winnings. This part probably would be used to test the system before betting any actual money. I suspect that the minimum test time should be a season for each sport.

Still another part would scrape information off of the web and compare the different numbers and find the highest paying bet on a particular game I wanted to place money on, comparison-shopping if you will. I could also track the odds that the odds makers give and compare them against the finial outcome, making sure that I remove the poor performers and reward the good ones with my money.

The system could be built, though I have doubts any real money could be made. Though by my calculations, if a small percent were made daily, it would add up very quickly over time (a few years). Just think about what 1 percent compounded interest daily could do with 1000 dollars.

In that spirit, I would like to share this article.

"No, with the title of this column I am not referring to your favorite league. You can decide that on your own.

I’m referring to baseball wagering — specifically, the general difference in results between the National League and the American League. When analyzing baseball, it usually is not a good idea to blend the results of the two leagues into one statistical pot. Here’s why.
There is often a pronounced difference in overall results when comparing the two leagues. For example, let’s examine some differences for the games from the start of the 2002 season through May 20.

In the National League, when the home team has been favored, it has won 59.1 percent of the time (133 times out of 225). In the American League, when the home team has been favored, it has won 63.8 percent of the time (104 of 163)."

I also wonder the effect that technology has had on betting, especially the numerical analysis of the stats and numbers.


Terri Schiavo's brain was small so she was in a PVS

Do people actually believe that crap?

I am so tired of the people who actually believe the lines that the MSN says.

"Her brain was small, so she was in a PVS".

morons, every single person who believes that trash. If you believe that you have mish-mash for brains.

"Up to 60 percent of the human body is water, the brain is composed of 70 percent water, blood is 82 percent water, and the lungs are nearly 90 percent water."

And lets remember how the poor woman died. She died of dehydration. I bet every single organ of her body was shrunk up like a grape in the sun.


Friday, June 17, 2005

Oregon - complaints

These complaints are of my short trip or Oregon.

Gripe 1
In my first hour in the great liberal state of Oregon I was pulled over for not using my blinker properly at 1 AM in the morning. Here are the important parts of my conversation with the officer.

(I have my license out and in his hand before he says any thing)
Officer: May I see you registration and insurance.
Me: It's a rental

Officer: Says something I do not remember.
Me: I motion towards the glove compartment and Stewardess pulls out our rental receipts. We hand him the receipts.

Officer: Says something, but an 18-wheeler goes and I cannot understand a word he says.
Me: (I think to myself, "I could be nice") Huh? (With an expressionless look in my face)

Officer: Repeats what he says word for word, it deals with using you blinker 100 feet before you turn. I apparently flicked my blinker, which I feel that shows my ultimate knowledge of the road and my surroundings. He ends with a question asking if I knew you had to use your blinker 100 feet before you turn.
Me: (I answer immediately with no pause) No. (He seems caught off guard.)

The officer then asks me to step outside the car with him. I go.

The officer asks three or four individual questions about what I am doing, where I am going, and what is my relationship to stewardess.

My answers: Corvallis, friend's wedding, and boyfriend (In those exact words.)

Officer: Do you have any problems with anything that has happened tonight?
Me: (I think, "I am being a jerk, but I am not dumb.") No (I answer as if I think he is a moron.)

He then goes and asks stewardess those same questions, while I am standing behind the car, she is extremely nice to him.

He then lets me off with a warning (no paper trail) and hands me back my license. He was very polite when he handed it to me.

I am pissed because I should have said as soon as he walked up, "Give me a ticket or leave me alone.” but I was too tired to think. 1 AM PST time is like 3 AM CST.

Gripe 2
All gas pumps in Oregon are full service. It is the law. For those of you who have forgotten what that means, it means someone else pumps you gas. I do not know if I have ever been to a gas pump like that before in my life. It was a little weird. I drive up and just sit there and the attendant asks me what I want. I say gas. He looks at me like he expects me to say something else. I don't. My question is what kind of liberal backwater place still has screwed up laws like that?

Gripe 3
The dirty old man at Motel Six, but that can happen anywhere.

Gripe 4
The stupid signs that socialist backwater places like that have. I saw one sign that said, "Watch out for low flying aircraft". WTF? Am I supposed to duck? If I saw a plane flying at me I would probably do the exact same thing if I saw a car driving at me. I would freeze and die, move and not make it and die, or put out my gun and shoot the plane or car and then die. If you have to post a sign that says, "Watch out for lowing flying aircraft.” your problem is the aircraft not the people walking on the ground.

Stewardess and I took pictures, I will post the absurd signs I saw. The one I mentioned just happened to be the dumbest.


Thursday, June 16, 2005

One cruel joke

I mean, it is like making toothpaste out of sugar.

Source:"What didn't surprise us was that total soft drink use was linked to overweight and obesity," Fowler tells WebMD. "What was surprising was when we looked at people only drinking diet soft drinks, their risk of obesity was even higher."

"That may be just what happens when we offer our bodies the sweet taste of diet drinks, but give them no calories. Fowler points to a recent study in which feeding artificial sweeteners to rat pups made them crave more calories than animals fed real sugar."


Wednesday, June 15, 2005

oregon - props

I have several things I liked and several things I really disliked about the great state of Oregon, which I discovered during my recent trip. I will begin with the things I liked, just not to seem grumpy and ungracious.

Scenery - Oregon has some of the most interesting scenery that I have seen, and I have seen a good bit of what this world has to offer. I have hiked in the smokies, skied in the Rockies, slept in the outback, scuba-ed on the great reef, sea kayaked in Fiji. The best I can describe the coast of Oregon is a "cold rainforest". The trees lining the "short" scenic route (It was not that far distance wise, but took almost an entire day to drive) were covered with moss and they were the type of trees that you see in colder climates (conifers mainly is what I recognized with my limited knowledge). In some places the unused edge of the road had a thin dusting of moss covering it.

Corvallis - I spent nearly two days in the Corvallis area. That city is set in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, in Oregon's Willamette Valley. Most of the town has a scenic view of a hill over looking the town. The town population is around 50,000, but it feels more like 20,000.

One of the things that I really liked about Corvallis was that nearly every road had room for bikes, a parallel bike path, or a bike lane. I feel that you do not have to raise gas taxes to encourage people to drive less. All that is really necessary is to provide for bike or walker safety and to allow businesses to build where the people are. It is basically a build it, and they will come approach. If there were room for people to ride their bikes without being in the way of cars consistently through out the city, then you would see many people choose to ride their bike to do certain things.

Silver Lake Bed and Blanket - I know that this place is not in Oregon, but it was on my trip. This was easily the best place that stewardess and I stayed at during the trip. It had a great view and an extremely comfortable bed. In fact, the bed I slept in is on the website (it is captioned with "Queen Sized Bed" or third from top). That is a super-soft fluffy bed and I would suggest it to anyone. It was soft, but not too soft. I loved it. You can also see the view I had as I woke up of the dock and the lake. Which the view is better if you head is on the bed.

See other trip info here


Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Yea, I think I disagree

Source: "Paradoxically, America can only help the world if it remembers how profoundly different we are from the rest of the world. By assuming that other nations can copy us, we are forgetting that we are, in every sense of the word, inimitable -- the product of an exceptional set of circumstances that occurred in one spot of the globe at one particular moment in the history of mankind. That is why any foreign policy that refuses to recognize our own uniqueness is inevitably doomed to failure."

Everyone knows America is better than everyone else, but it is still impolite to point it out.

I am not so sure that this comment is exactly right either. I think this theory makes for an easy out in a lot of cases, which easy outs are also un-American.


I have gotten a good many speeding tickets

I have gotten a good many speeding tickets and have never had my insurance rates affected. I had a guess to the reasons why, my guess has been confirmed.

Source: (around page 9) "By comparison, speeding-related citation data is not as frequently collected or maintained in a statewide data-base. In response to the question of maintaining speeding-related citation data, 31 jurisdictions (AL,AK, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, Guam, HI, IL, IA, KY, LA, MD, MA, MS, NC, NV, NH, NJ, OK, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, WA, WV, WI, WY) responded in the affirmative. Many of the affirmative responses stated that citation database information is only maintained on citations issued by the state police and does not include speeding citations issued by local enforcement agencies. "

As long as it is not a state trooper in TN, GA, LA, MS, and TX. Thank goodness for the south being too poor to do anything about speeding tickets.

NOTE: I expect this situation to change as technology becomes cheaper.


Monday, June 13, 2005

The Final Tent Comes Down

The Circus that was Mike Tyson has finally drawn to a close. He head-butted, he threw low blows, and even attempted to break his opponent's arm, but in the end he surrendered in a fight he couldn't even cheat to win. His sixth round loss closed the page in a chapter of sports history that was at times awesome, tragic, and compelling. A great champion knows when he is done, and he walks away before he disgraces the sport he once dominated. Mike Tyson has finally bowed out, although 15 years too late.

"I just don't have it in me anymore. . . . My career's over," Tyson said. "It's been over since 1990. . . . "

It is relieving to know that he has come to same conclusion as the rest of the Western World. A man that peaks at the age of 20 can look forward to nothing other than a long and pitiful decline. Mike Tyson is the icon of decline. Every comeback dream has been exposed as nothing more than the hot greed of greasy promoters. Iron Mike tumbled back down the hill each time, and has finally progressed to the point where even an escalator couldn't help. A young man with the world by the balls squandered his talents, his money, and any wise words that even fell on his ears. He has become a loser, a felon, and a public embarrassment. But in a world where the only true crime is to be boring, he will always be remembered as a king.

I am suspecting

I am suspecting that my next job might be in comedy or politics. I will share the last two jokes that I have thought of. I seem to come up with a good one about once every week and a half.

Joke One
My wife like weddings so much that she had three.

Joke Two
Question: Why are there not any good liberal blogs?
Answer: They expect the government to do it for them.


Shooting game

Click here for a fun game.

Basically you shoot moving targets.


If you have a dog in heat....

...and it is causing you problems. Do you lock up the dog to keep it away from the children or do you lock up your child to keep the child away from the dog.

One mother's story...

"Maureen Faibish said she ordered Nicholas to stay in the basement while she did errands on June 3, the day he was attacked by one or both of the dogs.

She said she was worried about the male dog, Rex, who was acting possessive because the female, Ella, was in heat.

"I put him down there, with a shovel on the door," Faibish said in an interview with the San Francisco Chronicle. "And I told him: 'Stay down there until I come back.' Typical Nicky, he wouldn't listen to me."

Nicholas apparently found a way to open the basement door."


Sunday, June 12, 2005

Movie night

Not a movie, a song: Ivan Lenin - Another Scar on My Wrist
Very funny, though it is not very clean.

California Car Chase - Short but sweet, I forget what happened to the driver. I think he made it out alive.

Sword Play - some dumb ass was treating a modern day sword like it was the real thing. (I had to play it twice, the first time it loaded a bit slow and I could not understand what they were saying.)

Koran Abuse 1
Koran Abuse 2
Koran Abuse 3
Koran Abuse 4

To stop that abuse please email me your address so I can send you are rescued Koran in the mail.

Update: I forgot this one.

Police tazer woman - Do what they police say, because they can taze you just for fun.


Saturday, June 11, 2005


Projects, processes, or tasks at work ALWAYS grow in size, never shrink.

Previous work laws and life laws (here and here).


51 pct gun nut

You are 51% of a gun nut!

You're probably either a seasonal hunter or someone with a decent head
knowledge of guns. Keep working at it, and you could really be a force
to be reckoned with!

My test tracked 1 variable How you compared to other people your age and gender:
free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 67% on knowledge
Link: The Gun Nut Test written by slayer1am on Ok Cupid

I know i need to work on this. I only really know about handguns and they had a lot of long gun questions on the test.

via The AnarchAngel


Team Infidel

The post has been called "Outstanding" , "one of the greatest things I've seen in a LONG time...", and "spectacular". They have been labeled "Desecration Angels!". It has been described as "Yikes. Too much bad karma for me.", "there is some baad juju in that!", and ""“performance art"".

See it for yourself.

If you are disgusted with what you see please email me at "cyrusmckormick at hotmail dot com" and I will rescue a Qur'an for you. You can pick the Qur'an of your choice from the internet, I will purchase it, and then mail it according to your wishes to were ever you want. You will be required to pay for the Qur'an, shipping, and a 40 percent handling fee. We take cash, money orders, and pay pal deposits. Please help me stop this abuse. Only you and other people like you can stop Qur'an abuse.

via Say Uncle


Friday, June 10, 2005

Countries I have visited

There are a lot of states I have not visited, and there are some that I regret having seen. But these are countries I have visited. I have spent an extensive amount of time (a year or more)in the States, Iceland, Germany, and Iraq.
United States
Costa Rica
Czech Republic

States I have been to

In the spirit of the recent post by Stewardess, I will also share the states I have visited. The ones I have been to are bolded.



New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
West Virginia



...I know i will like the way a person thinks by reading the frist few lines of one post.

Source: "As you may already know, it is a sin for a Taliban male to see any woman other than his wife naked, and that he must commit suicide if he does. So this Saturday at 4 p.m. eastern time all American women..."

via Stephen Green


AR15 lower receivers logo contest

Here is my entry into the Say Uncle AR15 lower receivers logo contest.

Posted by Hello



An interesting story has been happing in the Memphis blogsphere. The original post that started all the interesting debate is here (Somewhat recently, as many of you know, I told my parents I was gay.....). I will provide links and excerpts to the different blogs I know about that cover the story and commentary will occur at the end.

Basic idea of the story is that a Memphis teenager (Zach) tells his parents that he is gay, and then his parents send him to a "fundamentalist Christian program for gays".

Love in Action (via River Mud Company)- a better look at the beginnings of what happened that what I am giving here. This post contains information about Zach and the program he has been sent to.

The program has been described as Source: (via pesky fly) "It's psychological torture aimed at getting a "correct answer." It's like forcing your child to have a sex change. It's abuse. It's effing abuse."

The rules for the program are here (Via Zach).

"Attire: General

Modesty is expected. No tight, provocative, or suggestive clothing or spandex may be worn. No provocative or suggestive mannerisms are permitted. Fresh undergarments are to be worn at all times. Boxer shorts of any kind are considered underwear and are not to be worn as outer clothing. All clients must be dressed appropriately in clean, unwrinkled clothes when leaving the house for the day. Men may not wear any jewelry (other than a watch and a wedding band) unless approved through a C.O.C. In addition to a watch and wedding band, women may also wear a pair of simple earrings (one earring per ear.) The clients may not wear Abercrombie and Fitch or Calvin Klein brand clothing, undergarments, or accessories.
Men: Shirts are to be worn at all times, even while sleeping. T-shirts without sleeves are not permitted at any time, whether worn as an outer garment or an undergarment. This includes ³muscle shirts² or other tank-tops. Bikini-style underwear is prohibited. Women: Bras must be worn at all times, except while sleeping. Thong-style underwear is prohibited."

A protest group was started against "Love In Action" which runs the "Refuge" camp (details here and here.)

The minutes of the one of protests groups meetings are here.

I think it will be funny if it "camp" works.

Either we are born gay or we are not born gay. In absence of the "rainbow gene(s)", I am forced to believe that we are not born gay. If we are not born gay, then it is a behavior that can be changed (Just like cognitive therapy has been shown to help people that are depressed). Though I seriously doubt the camp will help Zack.


Thursday, June 09, 2005

Photoshop setups

This is the picture that was chosen to photoshop Sandcastle into. The only thing that has been altered in this photo is where I covered up the faces. The background is real and so is the pink vest.

(Note: I am on the right, the groom is in middle, and Angel (who comments here once and awhile) is on the right.)

Posted by Hello

Just skip this post

This post will serve mainly as an outline of the Oregon trip. If I were you, I would skip this post and all other posts about Oregon.

Day 1
10:00 PM Arrival in Portland, OR
2:00 AM (technically of Day two) Arrival in Corvallis, OR

Day 2
Preparations for wedding, hanging out, and bachelor party.

Day 3
Wedding day. Begin drive up coast, made it to Pacific City.

Day 4
Finish up scenic drive and head towards Mount St. Helens. Stayed in a nice B&B on Silver lake.

Day 5
See Mount St. Helens and leave Portland


An nice attempt

Source:"SOUTHFIELD, Mich. - Some U.S. companies are trying to control employee ailments like high blood pressure in order to curb skyrocketing health-insurance costs.

PepsiCo (PEP) and American Standard Cos. (ASD) have also started programs that encourage employees with poor health to clean up their acts; 16 percent of PepsiCo. employees are currently working with a diet and exercise coach, reports

While helping employees shape up may seem like huge undertaking, employers simply can't afford the alternative of succumbing to high health-care costs."

While these program might have some success, I think that the amount of success is limited by the culture at the companies. My company gets together and does walks every once and awhile and they have started offering women's workout classes in a part of the brand new expansionn.

Which I think the athletic culture of the company is also limited by the infrastructure of the company. If my company had a place to shower, I would ride a bicycle into work (I live about 10 miles away from work.), but since they do not I will drive for the forseeable future.

Encouragingg employees to eat right is a good start, encouragingg employees to exercise is better, but facilitatingg employees workouts by providing infrastructuree would seem to be the best bet in a long term plan.


Wednesday, June 08, 2005

I am back

I have tones of ideas for posts.

I will start with a joke I thought of on the last road trip.

Question: What is the difference between a communist and a socialist?

Answer: I would shoot a communist.


Thursday, June 02, 2005


Heading to portland for a friend's wedding.

I will be back the 7th of june and blogging probably the 8th or 9th of june.


Recent Trip

During my recent trip to the big city of Chicago I noticed a one thing.

This entire country is a soft target. I saw hundreds of water towers that would be really easy to blow up with a rocket launcher. Or they could be easily attacked in the middle of the night. It probably would not take much to poke a hole in one of those. It would take very little to knock out a water tower and remove water for several thousands of people. Many of them were easily seen from the interstate highway, which would probably be the way the terrorists would arrive and escape.

It would take very little to cause very large amounts of destruction and slow down traffic in certain areas. Remember when that bridge was knocked down on I-40 by a barge. Very few people were killed but it slowed traffic and costed the state and federal government millions of dollars to fix the bridge. It would just take a really big hole in the road to make it useless to traffic or slow traffic down.

As a society we would be unprepared to fight a major ground based war or even fight a small war against a determined enemy using guerilla tactics in our cities. The very freedom we have creates huge gaping holes to attack us in our cities and homes.


Wednesday, June 01, 2005


At worked they blocked the ports which the streamed music and videos come in. So when ever I find a video I want to watch, I have to store the link on my computer, log into work from home, and watch the video from the browser from my home computer. This results in kinda of an mini-internet movie marathon. I will share these finds with you.

Talent Trick - ok, but not that great, though new to me.
Big Girl Beats down skinny dude - this one is an old one, but should be viewed every once and a while (real long)
Paris Hilton Carl's Jr. Commercial - those social conservatives cannot win this battle
Steel target ricochet - nothing to see here , though an interesting conversation video
Store Wars - nice star wars spook, I think I pulled this one from Dave justus
Pat tillman tribute - a late memorial
Machine Gun Video - I see why they outlawed those suckers. I want one


Tennessee Senator John Ford

Senator John Ford has resigned (via Blake). Blake and I both seemed to think that he would be the last one to resign. I thought he would fight the charges to the end. Though, I think I figured out why he did resign. He wanted to protect his nephew, Harold Ford Jr, who is running for the TN US sensate seat.

Also more ford stuff (via Blake)

backstory here.


Burma-Shave signs

On the road trip this weekend, the friends and I were driving up american highway 57 in the anti gun state of Illinois and I saw a set of pro CCW signs. I got a laugh and learned a little about American history.

Sign 4:"WHY CAN'T YOU?"
Sign 5:""

Some one in the car mentioned that the signs were "Burma-Shave" signs. I had no idea what that was, so i got some american oral history. This was the type of stuff that was left out of my highschool history books.

Source:"At their height of popularity there were 7,000 Burma-Shave signs stretching across America. The familiar white on red signs, grouped by four, fives and sixes, were as much a part of a family trip as irritating your kid brother in the back seat of the car. You'd read first one, then another, anticpating the punch line on number five and the familiar Burma-Shave on the sixth.

The signs cheered us during the Depression and the dark days of World War II. But things began to change in the late Fifties. Cars got faster and superhighways got built to accomodate them. The fun little signs were being replaced by huge, unsightly billboards.

1963 was the last year for new Burma Shave signs. No more red and white nuggets of roadside wisdom to ease the journey. "

Here is a little history abou the group, Guns Save Lifes, who built the signs and some of their early fights once they started making head way.

Any group, or individual, contemplating erection of signs along a public roadway should be aware that regulations exist concerning "commercial advertising." However, as these signs are posted on private property and they are political in nature, they are protected by the Constitution, as affirmed by the 9-0 1994 Supreme Court decision City of LaDue vs. Gilleo. In 1999, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) send threatening letters to nearly all of the landowners displaying Burma-style signs. Paul Vallandigham, our attorney, sent IDOT a letter citing the LaDue vs. Gilleo decision and explaining how the CCRA would respond if additional letter were sent to the landowners or if IDOT removed the signs as threatened. A friend at the state headquarters of IDOT told us that the chief legal counsel (at the time) told his district offices to "not give Mr. Vallandigham any reason to send me further correspondence." To this day, no additional letters have ever been received from IDOT regarding the CCRA Burma-style signage."

That was a dirty trick Illinois tried to pull, to bad they are dumb butts and do not understand what free speech means.


From TN State Sen. Jim Bryson

Last week in the General Assembly

Many people have asked me about the final days of the 2005 legislative session.
This e-mail serves as my personal perspective on the events last Thursday,
Friday and Saturday. My memories of these days will revolve around two
significant events: legislators being arrested and the fight to retain the sick
and needy on TennCare.


On Thursday morning, the FBI arrested 4 state legislators at the Capitol and
hauled them off in handcuffs. All four of these legislators plus a former
legislator were caught accepting money for sponsoring a bill in the legislature.

We were all stunned, shocked and deeply disappointed in our colleagues. Other
than John Ford’s very public shenanigans, we did not know of the other four
individuals’ involvement in anything of this type, nor did we suspect an
ongoing FBI sting operation. We were as surprised as everyone else.

Between 8:30 and 9:00 I was called into a private office and told about the
arrests of Sen. Ward Crutchfield, Sen. Kathryn Bowers and Rep. Chris Newton. At
that time, the word was that the FBI was looking for John Ford and that more
legislators may be involved. We soon discovered that the FBI had arrested John
Ford as well as former Senator Roscoe Dixon and two “bagmen” (intermediaries
who deliver the money, sometimes in paper bags).

The media began converging on the Capitol with reporters and television cameras
in every hallway. Even perennial whistle-blower Barry Schmittou and perennial
candidate John Jay Hooker showed up to pose for the cameras.

About 10:30 the Republican Caucus convened to discuss the situation and for
prayer. At 11:00 we watched, along with the rest of the state, the press
conference describing the sting operation and arrests.

That afternoon, we reconvened in legislative session. Outside the chamber, the
media was swarming. Inside the chamber became a place of relative calm as the
Senate resumed its business and we considered the bills before us. The mood was
somber and businesslike. The occasional bickering over legislation virtually
disappeared as Senators simply focused on the merits of individual bills.

When the Senate adjourned that evening, the media deadlines had passed and few
reporters or cameras were in the halls. It was time to return to our offices to
prepare for Friday since the budget would be first on the calendar Friday

The events of Thursday will harm the credibility of the legislature for some
time to come.


For the past three months or so, Sen. Diane Black had been leading a Republican
Caucus team to investigate options related TennCare. The team met virtually
every week and brought in numerous outside experts to share their ideas.

Besides serving on this Republican Caucus TennCare team, I also serve on the
TennCare Oversight Committee and the TennCare budget sub-committee of the Senate
Commerce Committee. I studied TennCare the entire session. In my opinion, the
situation going into the legislative budget process was:

1. According to the TennCare budget office, the Governor’s budget was
sufficient to provide more than enough savings to avert another TennCare crisis
for two fiscal years (FY06 and FY07), after the next election.
2. The Governor expects a favorable court decision in early June that would
eliminate many roadblocks to implementing TennCare reforms. These reforms would
result in several hundred million dollars in savings.
3. The Governor was confident enough in attaining relief from the consent
decrees that he had budgeted to spend $100 million in savings based on a
favorable court decision.
4. Before getting the favorable decision and being able to implement cost-saving
reforms, the Governor planned to disenroll 67,000 of the insurable and over
100,000 insured (those who do not have insurance but also do not have an
uninsurable condition).

Given this information, Sen. Black and I devised a plan to continue the
disenrollment of the uninsured but retain the 67,000 uninsurable on the TennCare
rolls for one year at a reduced benefit level. This plan would give the
Governor time to implement reforms and eliminate from the rolls anyone who did
not qualify. We reasoned that reforms should be given a chance to work before
disenrolling the sick from TennCare.

Our plan was based on financial information from the Governor’s own TennCare
office and was contingent on the Governor obtaining relief from the courts
regarding the Grier Consent Decree. The money was available to help these
67,000 as well as another 11,500 severely mentally ill who would also be

The Governor fought this plan with all the tools at his disposal. His lobbyists
spread throughout the capitol to fight the plan. The Governor called us into
his office asking us to drop the proposal. The Governor himself appeared at the
Republican and Democratic Caucus meetings to fight the plan.

In the end, the Governor won. This summer, 67,000 uninsurable Tennesseans will
be disenrolled from TennCare with very few options available to them. Some will
be able to afford HIPAA policies with premiums generally over $800/month. These
people were paying premiums to TennCare. Most of this population cannot afford
such high premiums and will have no healthcare alternative. Virtually all have
some type of chronic condition.

Why would the Governor fight a plan to help 67,000 Tennesseans who cannot obtain
health insurance when the money was available and the “roadblock” consent
decrees were eliminated?

The Governor has positioned the TennCare program to be stable at least through
the election.
1. The TennCare budget is funded to avert a crisis for the next two years.
2. The consent decrees will be eliminated or greatly reduced to pave the way for
the Governor to implement further cost-saving healthcare management reforms,
saving about $300 million.
3. Benefit limits on enrollees will result in additional savings and provide
incentive for people to self-disenroll.
4. The TennCare rolls will shrink by at least 200,000 people through

In 2006, watch for TennCare reforms to be implemented and for TennCare to be
financially sound. I would also expect that the numbers will be so positive
that TennCare will actually re-enroll some of the sickest individuals being
disenrolled this year.

This week has not been a good week in our state. Our legislature has become
even less credible to the people of Tennessee. Also, we will have at least
200,000 more people without access to insurance in Tennessee raising our
uninsured population to almost 1 million people, or one of every 6 Tennesseans.
I will begin working on insurance reform for the uninsured when the legislature

These difficulties shall pass and we will have better days. I am resolved today
more than ever to legislate by principle not politics, to fight for right and
not fold for gold, to stand strong in the face of adversity.

Thank you for your indulgence in reading this e-mail. My next e-mail will be a
recap of the Legislative year. There were a lot of good things that I will have
to report. Until then, I hope your summer gets off to a wonderful start.