Saturday, February 27, 2010
City Brights: Yobie Benjamin : Timeline: When Chile tsunami gets to Hawaii, California & Pacific countries
Friday, February 26, 2010
Of course, the IOC wasn't too thrilled with the post game celebration following the game in which the Canadians beat the American ladies, 2-0, earning them the gold medal.
According to reports, about a half hour after the game, the team came back out on the ice with beer, champagne and even cigars to continue their celebration. To that, I say God bless 'em.
I assume the team members are all over 21, where's the problem? Does the IOC expect them to come out in cute little wool sweaters and enjoy some milk and cookies? Give me a break...
These young athletes have busted their cute little asses to get to where they are. Hours of practice and sacrifice go into making a championship team. Who can blame them for blowing off a little steam?
I don't think cracking open a couple of Molsens in a post game celebration will do anything to tarnish the hoity toity image of Olympic competition Let's get a life, OK?
Thursday, February 25, 2010
Like the man says... Don't mess with demented old white guys...
The dilemma is what about people that can't or won't fend for themselves? I understand the frustration with those who continue to squeeze out puppies in order to remain on the welfare roles. They make the the rest of those who genuinely need help, through no fault of their own, look bad.
Not every person receiving some form of government assistance is a lazy, unmotivated person that just sits at home watching soap operas while the rest of us bust our ass to pay their way. Yet existing programs seem to encourage just that.
Hell, even unemployment used to make you document your job search activities to receive benefits, not any more.
Tax payers shouldn't have a problem with helping those people that are at least making an effort to get out and work and provide for themselves, with programs such as food and medical assistance.
I don't know the answer for those who are just chronically unemployed. I hate seeing people standing on street corners, begging for a little spare change. There has to be a way to get these folks some help, possibly finding some task like road cleaning, painting or something else in order to earn this assistance. I've always felt that single moms that are receiving AFDC type assistance should be made to serve in a day care program for other low income working families.
Hopefully, when this health care debate is over, the president can come up with some initiative to fairly help those truly in need.
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Oh sure, President Reagan made us all feel great to be Americans. The whole "me generation" thing was a derivative of his commitment to individualism. But some people choose to peel a few layers of the onion of the man that was arguably the most popular president of the 20th century.
Some people don't know that Reagan was a "New Deal Democrat" early in his political career. While still a registered Democrat in the early 50's, he endorsed the 1952 and 1956 political candidacies of Dwight Eisenhower as well as Richard Nixon's 1960 run. Reagan did not officially change parties until 1962. To me he was one of those fair weather Conservatives, whose ideology changed as he became more successful in life.
I'm not much for movie trivia, but there was a line from the movie "New Jack City," where Wesley Snipes character, Nino Brown says, "You gotta rob to get rich in the Reagan era." Having been dirt poor during the Reagan years, I felt that line held more truth than maybe even the movie's writer, Thomas Lee Wright envisioned. It was easy for a guy like me to get the impression that good 'ol Ronnie didn't give a fuck about the poor.
There are those who will credit Reagan for being instrumental for the demise and ultimately the dissolution of the Soviet Union, when in reality, the Communist nation's drawn out involvement in Afghanistan depleted their already weakened economy. Sound familiar?
I also wonder how long after his second term came to an end did his struggle with Alzheimer's disease actually begin. Was he beginning to show symptoms while still in office?
There are those who will tell you that Reagan's policies are at least in part to blame for the weakened condition of our economy today. It's sure that the massive tax cuts played a huge role in our current deficit situation.
I really don't get off by speaking ill of the dead, but it does get a little sickening to listen to those who speak of Ronald Reagan with some sort of biblical reverence. He was just another politician, who just like Obama, was a great orator.
Thing is, my reaction after giving this some thought isn't much different.
Well actually... If I ran a mall like Rosedale, one that is not a tourist attraction in its own right, I would simply enforce a no loitering law.
You're not actively shopping or in possession of movie tickets, see ya. Shopping malls should not have to double as youth recreation centers. They are having a hard enough time competing with on line retailers, without having to deal with potential customers being scared away by a group of thugs.
By the way, this has nothing to do with race. Blue eyed, blonde boys are just as capable of acting like thugs as their black, Mexican or Asian counterparts and can be just as intimidating.
As the tundra thaws out, youth will begin to migrate away from the malls and will hang out outdoors again. Mall management should use this time to construct a workable plan to make their facilities attractive again to shoppers and keep the riff raff out.
We all will be watching this closely.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Today, Conservatives are calling Brown a turncoat for being one of 5 GOP senators that voted for a jobs bill that was endorsed by the president. A vote that has drawn the ire of right wing blogs and talk shows.
It seems to me that if more of our congress men and women would vote their conscience instead of using the us against them mentality, we might get more accomplished in this country. Brown has stated that he is against the current heath care legislation which had stalled in the Senate. I don't think that means he is against a reasonable reform bill.
It is refreshing to see someone on Capitol Hill that is not a slave to the party line. Brown is already demonstrating a common sense approach, which I hope does not dissolve as time passes.
Monday, February 22, 2010
I can't beat this drum enough. We are far too sensitive to words, now days. People have to be so careful as to not offend some fringe group that will take exception to any off color remark. I mean think about it. My blood pressure would be off the charts if I got all worked up every time Jay Leno uttered the term "fat ass."
After all, this could be a good sign. Maybe when Pawlenty finishes his term, he'll peruse a career as a mediocre stand up, instead of trying subject the entire country to the same asinine policies that he's clubbing us Minnesotans with.
Saturday, February 20, 2010
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This was an extremely fun experience. Look for some changes in the following week as the show evolves.
My new co-host, Brian Cooper and I discuss the possible fallout from the assassination of a Hamas leader by an alleged European hit squad. Also, why all this relief money to Haiti when we have children staving in this country? Minnesota Governor, Pawlenty's spending cuts on the the backs of working poor. As well as our take on Tiger Woods' well choreographed apology. Finally, why aren't we buying American goods? This and anything else we may try to squeeze in.
Friday, February 19, 2010
One of the endearing qualities of WCCO-AM all these years was the refusal to follow the growing trend of scrapping shows with local talent in favor of syndicated or satellite programing (aka Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck), despite the obvious cost benefit of such a move. It should be noted that KTLK-FM, the station that carries Limbaugh and Beck here locally, along with one local morning show (Chris Baker), seriously lags behind 'CCO in the Arbitron ratings.
That said, the neighbor has fallen from it's lofty perch as well. Dropping from first place, a position it held forever until KQRS-FM blew by them over 10 years ago, to 7th, which still makes it by far, the most listened to station on the AM dial.
Tied for 18th place in this market (3rd on the AM dial) was my my recent favorite, KSTP AM 1500. A station that, like WCCO, featured local talk personalities. What I liked about AM1500's personalities (Patrick Reusse, Jay Kolls, Shawn Prebil, Chris Murphy, Kelly Webb, Joe Soucheray, Joe Anderson and Al Malmberg) was their ability to keep me informed and entertained without coming off as polished and over pretentious. I felt like I was listening to regular guys from all walks of life.
Last week, "The Talk Station" that I liked so much, became "The Sports Talk Station." Worse yet, with the exception of Reusse, Soucheray and for now, Anderson, the rest have been sent packing. Hubbard Broadcasting, the parent company of AM1500, has entered into a contract with ESPN Radio, meaning 3/4 of their programing will originate from New York.
Needless to say, that preset on my radio no longer exists, but I have a hard time returning back to 'CCO on a regular basis. First off, all these ads for mortuaries and hospices kinda creeps me out. I know that a buck's a buck, but I'm 47 years old. Hopefully, I have a good 20 plus years before I have to worry about using any of these services. Also, there are times when I think my blood sugar is going to spike listening to all this sugary sweet content. It's sad when you look forward to the relic, Sid Hartman, just to hear a normal sounding guy.
That said, WCCO is now my main choice for information during the hours in which I'm in my cab. I understand there has been a revolving door of hosts filling that 1-3pm slot, including some guy last week from Philadelphia. Here is your chance, good neighbor. Suddenly there is a pool of very good local talk talent that is available for the taking. Do me and a few other former loyal listeners of KSTP a favor and bring one of these guys in. I think you'll see an even bigger spike in your listeners than you have since AM1500 turned it's back on us.
That said, I agree with him 100%, leave the wife and kids out of this, especially the kids. Did the media really follow his 2 1/2 year old to school? That's just disgusting.
Tiger Woods may be a low life that went into sex addiction rehab only to repair his tarnished image, but his kids don't deserve to be dragged down into his moral cesspool.
Thursday, February 18, 2010
While neither statement will win the president brownie points with the chamber of commerce, he does have a valid point in both instances.
Obama never said anything derogatory about Las Vegas. He never suggested that people spend their vacation dollars elsewhere.
Yet instead of acting like the true ambassador to the city, Goodman will cry over his spilled martini at his office while the president is in town. Too bad for him. Not many washed up mob lawyers get a chance at an audience with the president. Obama will come to the city to hold events with Senator Harry Reid (who obviously holds no ill will over the remarks) and address the economic challenges facing the area.
I'll bet 50 bucks that these challenges had little if anything to do with the president's remarks.
Pour yourself another one Oscar... Someone will be by to change your diaper shortly.
Is it that us middle aged guys with our oversized, sagging mid section may be just a bit envious of this rich, good looking stud that seemed to have the ability to bed any bimbo that caught his attention.
Woods will also tell us when he plans return to whacking that little white ball around the well groomed pastures. Not being a golf fan, I'm not sure which bores me more, his sex life or his professional life. Although I am looking forward to him returning to dominance on the links, because I'm sure tired of hearing about his sex addiction.
Meanwhile, Americans will wail with great anticipation for their next issue of the National Enquirer to come in the mailbox, so they can find out about the next celebrity that has an over active libido. It is that type of salacious reporting that has made that rag one of the best selling publications in the country, while Time and Newsweek continue to struggle. It will only be a matter of time before the next Tiger surfaces and all will be right with the world again.
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Yes, I'm talking about Minnesota Governor, Tim Pawlenty. You know, the man with the worst kept secret in America. The unannounced presidential candidate is proposing cutting the popular Minnesota Care program that provides affordable health care coverage for low income workers in this state. While not eliminating the program entirely, the governor's plan would lower the individual income level to just over $8,000 to be eligible for this program. This equates to about 20 hours per week at minimum wage.
This while the governor is proposing a 20% corporate tax reduction under the guise of job creation, in a state which enjoys far better unemployment numbers than the national average.
In my opinion, this is a continuance of this governor's disregard for the working poor in this state. All while he is grandstanding to the conservative wing of the Republican party.
The working poor in Minnesota need to get more involved here. We need to put down the I-Pods, turn off Desperate Housewives of Orange County or whatever the latest craze in pop culture may be and turn on the news to find out what T-Paw is doing to ruin your life.
Monday, February 15, 2010
Now I've flown Southwest a few times over the last few years and I've never had any problems. But now, after this incident, will me and every other larger than normal guy (or gal) face the scrutiny of their fat police?
The one thing Southwest has going for it is their general admission style seating. Every time I've flown with them, I've managed to find someone average size or smaller to sit next to. It's never been a problem.
Is it right that Southwest has this size policy? Well... I can't say that I blame someone for not wanting to be crowded for a 2 plus hour flight. But like I said, the seating arrangements usually shake out so as to not have anyone too uncomfortable. At least that's been my experience.
But now I'm a little worried. I have no plans to buy a second seat on this flight and I need to get to Tampa to help my friend bring a trailer back to Minnesota. I'm I going to be looked at like I'm a friggin' leper when I board the plane?
I guess we'll just have to wait and see..
When Lori and I moved in together 5 years ago yesterday, there were those who wondered how long we'd last. I understood the sediment, as I've had an extremely checkered past when it's come to relationships.
Yet after 5 years together and 3 years of marriage, while it hasn't been all smooth sailing, our relationship is as strong as ever. But, to my surprise, one of Lori's closest friends has chose judge her relationship with me, telling her that she could have done much better.
I don't doubt that, I'm far from being a prize catch, but this "friend" was very instrumental in hooking us up. Go figure...
I haven't always been great in this light, but I try not to be judgmental when it come to other people's lives. I am a firm believer in live and let live, especially if it doesn't effect me directly. But it seems there are people out there whose live must be so perfect that they feel the need to pass judgement on others. To them I say, take a good hard look at your own life. You'll more than likely find out that you have a few wrinkles of your own to iron out and if you focus on that, you won't have time to worry about the flaws in other people's lives.
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Friday, February 12, 2010
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A major market talk radio station in the Twin Cities abandons it's listener base to change to sports talk format and should people that receive welfare or other government aid have less freedom than those who go it alone? This plus a few other random thoughts from a simple mind.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Now all Chris could tell me was that he and Prebil had indeed been let go. I understood that he couldn't go into any more detail than that and didn't press him.
Before I spoke to Murph, I went to the station's website and had noticed that not only was their page taken down, but so was the page of veteran personality, Al Malmberg. At was at this time that it became clear that KSTP-AM was cleaning house.
Prebil and Murphy had changed me from a station hopper to a loyal listener to AM1500, so I was on their "insider" mailing list. About 4 hours ago, I received this e-mail from the station...
Whether you have been listening to AM1500 for a few days, a few years or, like me, since the 1970's, I thank you for your interest in the radio station.
Because you are an AM1500 Insider, I wanted you to be among the first to learn about some big changes that are coming our way.
Radio is an ever-changing landscape and throughout its 87-year history, KSTP-AM has been known for many things. In the very earliest days, when my grandfather was programming the station, we covered a lot of news and carried the NBC radio network, we aired soap operas and played many different types of music. Later, when my dad ran the station, he played Jazz and classical music, and then evolved into playing rock music, which at times dismayed his dad.
On Monday, February 15, we evolve again, and you will know us as AM1500 The SportsTalk Station.
Joe Soucheray and Patrick Reusse invented SportsTalk in this town - arguably in the country - and we look forward to featuring them together every afternoon. They are wonderfully talented entertainers and storytellers, as individuals and as a team, and they will anchor our new line-up that we think you will enjoy.
Patrick will be heard each day from noon to 2p.m. Joe and Patrick together from 2 to 4p.m., then from 4-6p.m. "The Mayor" resumes the magical theater of "Garage Logic."
For three years, we have enjoyed a tremendous partnership with the Minnesota Twins, and this new position enhances and strengthens our relationship with the Twins and their many fans. We look forward to being up and running before the Twins's inaugural season at Target Field.
Also, at the center of these changes will be a new partnership with ESPN, the worldwide leader in sports coverage. ESPN has a contractual obligation to another outlet in town for a period of time, but beginning Monday you will hear the Colin Cowherd program from 9a.m. to noon. Soon, we will also bring you ESPN's "Mike and Mike In The Morning," and some other great ESPN programming throughout the week.
When those pieces are able to unfold, we will change our name to 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
We are excited to embrace the next phase in our history, and we truly thank you for listening to the new AM1500 The SportsTalk Station.
My first reaction was at least they weren't reverting back to some of those boorish hosts from a year or so ago like Davis and T.D. Mischke. But that was still not really heartening.
Sports talk radio? Don't they read the ratings? Similar stations in this area aren't exactly blowing the doors off the market. The fact is, KSTP-AM is replacing a majority of it's local on air talent with less costly national programing. The only reason they decided to go to a sports format was to keep their relationship with the Twins healthy. A prudent business move, but one that will cost the station listeners, in the long run.
The station posted a similar notice on their Facebook page. As of a few minutes ago, there were 80 comments, none were positive and only 2 took a wait and see approach. A sign of things to come?
Hubbard Broadcasting has underwent more changes to it's radio programing than any other station over the last couple of years. Just recently, they converted their FM107 station that was a talk station primarily aimed at women to "My Talk 107," which will feature gossip and pop culture conversation. Not much of a change, I guess. But in this "ever-changing landscape" of radio, most of the successful stations have stayed the course, despite all the competition from podcasts and satellite radio.
I am truly saddened by losing Prebil and Murphy, as well as St. Paul area pastor, Kelly Webb, who did a popular hour long program afterward, from my listening choices. Their shows spoke to everyday people without a ton of political rhetoric. Listening to them was like listening to an old friend. I hope they catch on somewhere else soon.
This was indeed a sad day for talk radio listeners in the Twin Cities...
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Yesterday was spent fielding around 30 birthday wishes from my Facebook friends and unlike most, I personally thanked every one of them. After work, Lori and I fulfilled my culinary fantasy and enjoyed deep dish pizza and beer at a real pizzeria. Afterward, we enjoyed a movie we had earlier purchased. All in all, a very enjoyable evening.
I have come to the realization, after 47 years of life, that despite my health concerns and shaky financial status, I'm a pretty lucky guy. I have a loving wife, a job that doesn't suck all the time and friends from a very diverse cross section of society. In other words, life is pretty good.
As for goals in the next year, I'm pretty much going to take life as it comes. While this brutally normal Minnesota winter hasn't got me down, Lori and I haven't ruled out a move back to a warmer climate. I'd like to get my radio show on BlogTalkRadio.com back up and running and maybe parlay that into at least a part time gig on celestial radio. Other than that, I'm just going to take it one day at at time.
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Maybe it's the kick in the guts feeling we got when the eventual Super Bowl champion Saints denied us our almost assured destiny to football's promised land. Could be the fact that all of our winter time sports teams pretty much suck.
My guess is that it's the feeling we get up here about this time of year that no matter what that fat little rodent in Pennsylvania says, we got at least 6 weeks of winter to look forward to.
As the photo I took earlier points out, we have mounds of snow here that will be around until at least, mid May. Not to mention we're due for at least one more 6-8 incher. What sucks is that all that snow that's on the White House lawn (nearly 3 feet by now) will melt before our sad little normal snow pact does.
Minnesotans have been down right rude over the last couple days, myself included. Yesterday, I barked at a dumb assed pedestrian that didn't get the whole "don't walk" signal concept. Of course, he returned the favor. I generally don't engage in road rage, (hmm... poetic) but all this sledding around, damn near pasted by a city bus and having to replace a wiper that busted under ice buildup finally took it's toll.
I may have to take a daily drive by our new outdoor ballpark just to try to get some ray of hope that someday, hopefully soon I can put away the winter boots, the shovel and the ice scraper. Until that day, don't expect a whole lot of sugary sweet attitude from me or my snowbound neighbors.
Adi... oh the hell with it...
Monday, February 8, 2010
Because the bus driver won't give a fuck if he has to cross into your lane of traffic to go around what is impeding his lane, nor will he care if you have to slide into a parked car on your side to avoid being hit by him.
Fortunately, it didn't come to that. But it was too close for my liking.
I understand the Minnesota law that says that us peons must yield to buses that are pulling away from a stop and that are trying to merge into traffic from the shoulder they're allowed to drive on. But since when do we have to treat a city bus like it was an emergency vehicle? Do we have to yield to buses making left turns too?
I get it... You couldn't pay me enough to drive a bus in this city. But as someone who puts more miles on a vehicle a day than just about anyone other than an over the road truck driver, I try to use a little common sense and courtesy on the road. It was that attitude, plus the fact that my gut was telling me (no.. not that I had too many tacos and beer last night) that the driver of the multi ton vehicle that was already going to fast for the road conditions, was not going to think twice about coming over into my lane, as so he would not have to brake and risk sliding into the car on his side of the road, caused me to slow up just enough to avoid the squeeze.
One of my rules of survival on the road is to assume that every other 4 wheelin', texting, lipstick applying, Egg McMuffin eating soccer (or hockey) mom is a complete idiot and I need to provide ample space around me to avoid 3 hours of paperwork.
I guess I'll have to add MetroTransit bus drivers to that list as well...
It wouldn't have mattered who won the presidential election. The mess that was created by a falsely inflated stock and housing market that that blew up in our faces like a wad of Bubblelicious had little if anything to do with who was occupying 1600 Pennsylvania. Had McCain won, he would have ran into the same out of touch Congress that the current President is dealing with. He would have never got any cooperation from what still would have been a Democratic controlled House and Senate.
I agree that this president is a much better orator than he has been a leader. But remember, he had a very ambitious agenda. There was a lot of things screwed up and he wanted to fix every thing at once. I myself might have eased into the healthcare issue, even though it was one of my major priorities of this election. I still say Obama should have submitted legislation, after all his meetings with people in the healthcare industry, instead of relying on Congress to come up with their bills that were full of backroom deals and were void of most of the ideals that the president had initially proposed.
We have a lot of complex issues facing us. Like it or not, we elected this president by a fairly significant margin. That tells me that at least a few people agreed with his agenda going into the election. We may not see substantial results for years to come, but we as a nation have survived worse and we will pull through this as well.
That is unless we elect the Alaska teabagger in 2012.
Saturday, February 6, 2010
I have first hand knowledge of the welfare system. I was raised in it, My first wife was on it, hell, half the people I take in my cab get welfare assistance.
Here is the problem as I see it... You have to have no job and no resources in order to get welfare. You can't make more than $15,000 per year if you want help with food or medical. So why work at all, if the government will give you money, food, medical and reduced rent just to sit on your ass? There are millions of working Americans that make ten bucks an hour, hardly a living wage, yet make too much to qualify for any help with food or medical.
There are many people on welfare who know of no other way of life. It was a part of their family from day one.
The government was and is to blame for this. It was much easier, and less expensive, to throw a few hundred bucks worth of aid to people to do with as they want (including buying drugs) than it was to get to the real root of the problem. But that was back in the days of Johnson's "Great Society."
In a free society, we cannot tell people, even welfare recipients, how to run their lives. Otherwise, I'd be all for drug testing, as well as mandatory birth control, forced labor and maybe even micro chipping recipients.
And if you want to see total anarchy, just cut the cord all together.
There is no easy answer to welfare reform. President Clinton tried (with Newt Gingrich prodding him along) and I really didn't see that having any lasting affect. I'm afraid that along with the national debt, it's something we're just going to have to deal with.
America is not a perfect place. Americans are not perfect people. All we can do is try our best to get along in this world and provide for ourselves and our families. As well as try to understand that there are imperfections in our society and try not to get ourselves all worked up about it.
It could be much worse....
Friday, February 5, 2010
Thursday, February 4, 2010
Should the boyfriend be held responsible for the death as well?
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
That said, despite all the laws and stigma attached to DWIs, The number of fatalities from drunk driving collisions is still way too high. Law enforcement is doing its best to get these people off the roads, but in reality it's like trying to catch a hammerhead with a "Pocket Fisherman."
Bars and nightclubs rake in a ton of money with one goal, sell as much booze as customers can pour down their gullet. Many clubs enforce a two drink minimum, while others will not allow patrons to sit at a table without a drink in front of them.
You would think that bar owners would want to play bigger role in protecting their clientele or protecting the general public from their clientele. Some bars allow some of the "designated driver" services to post their signs in conspicuous locations, while others have a good working relationship with area cab companies. Both of those options rely on one condition, the patron must want to give up his keys.
The solution isn't easy. I don't know how many people go out with the sole intention of getting drunk. Conversely, I don't know many people realize just how many drinks it takes to put them over the legal limit or worse yet, making them a danger to themselves and others.
So what could be done? Remember when bars had those machines that you stuck a straw in that was like a breathalyzer? Most of them were taken out of bars because it was becoming a contest for some to see how high you could get the machine to register. Such a machine would be a great tool in the right hands, in an effort to persuade overserved individuals to find a sober ride home.
Another idea would entail larger clubs to employ a mandatory valet service, where the patron would not be given his keys unless he passed a breath test.
Extreme? Maybe... But unless you've lost a loved one or had your life altered by someone that had no malicious intent, only an intended night out of entertainment, you'll never understand the mentality that even one drunk driver on the road is too many.
Tuesday, February 2, 2010
The following is not original. I received this in an e-mail this afternoon.
Remember the guy who got on a plane with a bomb built into his shoe and tried to light it?
Did you know his trial is over?Did you know he was sentenced?
Did you see/hear any of the judge's comments on TV or Radio?
Didn't think so.!!!
Everyone should hear what the judge had to say.
Ruling by Judge William Young, US District Court.Prior to sentencing, the Judge asked the defendant if he had anything to say. His response: After admitting his guilt to the court for the record, Reid also admitted his 'allegiance to Osama bin Laden, to Islam, and to the religion of Allah,' defiantly stating, 'I think I will not apologize for my actions,' and told the court 'I am at war with your country.'
Judge Young then delivered the statement quoted below:
January 30, 2003, United States vs. Reid.Judge Young:
'Mr. Richard C. Reid, hearken now to the sentence the Court imposes upon you.
On counts 1, 5 and 6 the Court sentences you to life in prison in the custody of the United States Attorney General. On counts 2, 3, 4and 7,the Court sentences you to 20 years in prison on each count, the sentence on each count to run consecutively. (That's 80 years.)
On count 8 the Court sentences you to the mandatory 30 years again, to be served consecutively to the 80 years just imposed. The Court imposes upon you for each of the eight counts a fine of $250,000that's an aggregate fine of $2 million. The Court accepts the government's recommendation with respect to restitution and orders restitution in the amount of $298.17 to Andre Bousquet and $5,784 to American Airlines.
The Court imposes upon you an $800 special assessment. The Court imposes upon you five years supervised release simply because the law requires it. But the life sentences are real life sentences so I need go no further.
This is the sentence that is provided for by our statutes. It is a fair and just sentence. It is a righteous sentence.Now, let me explain this to you. We are not afraid of you or any of your terrorist co-conspirators, Mr. Reid. We are Americans. We have been through the fire before. There is too much war talk here and I say that to everyone with the utmost respect. Here in this court, we deal with individuals as individuals and care for individuals as individuals. As human beings, we reach out for justice.
You are not an enemy combatant. You are a terrorist. You are not a soldier in any war. You are a terrorist. To give you that reference,to call you a soldier, gives you far too much stature. Whether the officers of government do it or your attorney does it, or if you think you are a soldier, you are not----- you are a terrorist. And we do not negotiate with terrorists. We do not meet with terrorists. We do not sign documents with terrorists. We hunt them down one by one and bring them to justice.So war talk is way out of line in this court. You are a big fellow.But you are not that big. You're no warrior. I've known warriors. You are a terrorist. A species of criminal that is guilty of multiple attempted murders. In a very real sense, State Trooper Santiago had it right when you first were taken off that plane and into custody and you wondered where the press and the TV crews were, and he said: 'You're no big deal.
'You are no big deal.
What your able counsel and what the equally able United States attorneys have grappled with and what I have as honestly as I know how tried to grapple with, is why you did something so horrific.What was it that led you here to this courtroom today?
I have listened respectfully to what you have to say. And I ask you to search your heart and ask yourself what sort of unfathomable hate led you to do what you are guilty and admit you are guilty of doing? And,I have an answer for you. It may not satisfy you, but as I search this entire record, it comes as close to understanding as I know.
It seems to me you hate the one thing that to us is most precious. You hate our freedom. Our individual freedom. Our individual freedom to live as we choose, to come and go as we choose, to believe or not believe as we individually choose. Here, in this society, the very wind carries freedom. It carries it everywhere from sea to shining sea. It is because we prize individual freedom so much that you are here in this beautiful courtroom, so that everyone can see, truly see,that justice is administered fairly, individually, and discretely. It is for freedom's sake that your lawyers are striving so vigorously on your behalf, have filed appeals, will go on in their representation of you before other judges.
We Americans are all about freedom. Because we all know that the way we treat you, Mr. Reid, is the measure of our own liberties. Make no mistake though. It is yet true that we will bear any burden; pay any price, to preserve our freedoms. Look around this courtroom. Mark it well. The world is not going to long remember what you or I say here.The day after tomorrow, it will be forgotten, but this, however, will long endure.
Here in this courtroom and courtrooms all across America , the American people will gather to see that justice, individual justice,justice, not war, individual justice is in fact being done. The very President of the United States through his officers will have to come into courtrooms and lay out evidence on which specific matters can be judged and juries of citizens will gather to sit and judge that evidence democratically, to mold and shape and refine our sense of justice.See that flag, Mr. Reid? That's the flag of the United States of America . That flag will fly there long after this is all forgotten.That flag stands for freedom. And it always will.
Mr. Custody Officer. Stand him down.
So, how much of this Judge's comments did we hear on our TV sets? We need more judges like Judge Young. Pass this around. Everyone should and needs to hear what this fine judge had to say. Powerful words that strike home.
Monday, February 1, 2010
Take a look at this video. This is the ad from the gay dating website, ManCrunch.com, that was rejected by CBS, for airing on it's Super Bowl coverage. The network claimed that the ad was "not within the network's broadcast standards for Super Bowl Sunday." Saying also that the sales department had trouble verifying the organization's credit status.
I would have a tenancy to believe the latter. That said, I would hope that the network did not reject the ad simply because of the promotion of the gay lifestyle.
Now I could have done without seeing the nearly 10 seconds of the make out scene between these two guys. But other than that, I saw nothing inappropriate or obscene about the ad. The shocked look on the guy on the left was priceless.
It seems like all the coverage about the network's rejection has created a boom in hits to the site that was possibly as good as if the would have shelled out the $3 million to air the ad. Why my favorite radio hosts, Prebil and Murphy, devoted over an hour of today's show to the subject.
I wonder if Hubbard Broadcasting will send ManCrunch.com a bill for all that pub. I won't charge them for the links.