99 Bottles Of Vodka On The Bus..

Via Instapundit, (who like me, would like to think this story is true.)

“Eastern Ukraine is heavily ethnic Russian. The main industry is coal. The miners are rough, tough, and hate Yushchenko for wanting to take Ukraine away from Russia and toward the West,” writes Wheeler. “It was arranged for more than a thousand of them to be taken from Donetsk, the capital of the coal-mining region, by bus and train to Kiev, where, armed with clubs and blunt tools, they would physically beat up the Orange Revolutionaries. Such mass violence was not only to disperse the demonstrators but serve as an excuse for the government to declare martial law, suspending the Ukrainian Parliament (the Rada) and elections indefinitely.”
Now comes the secret weapon: vodka.
“When the miners got on their buses and trains, they found to their joy case after case of vodka � just for them. When they arrived in Kiev, trucks awaited them filled with more cases of vodka � all free provided by ‘friends’ of the Donetsk coal miners. Completely soused, they never made it to Independence Square. Too hammered blind to cause any violence at all, they had a merry time, passed out and were shipped back to Donetsk.”
Available only to subscribers of To the Point, Wheeler’s column goes on to explain who provided the liquor: teams of Porter Goss’ CIA working with their counterparts in British MI6 intelligence.

Well, it certainly sounds plausable… the rest is here.

Ooops

Roger L. Simon;

In the midst of live-blogging the Iraq election the other night, I received an email that got my attention. It was from the State Department situation room and, aside from the ego-flattering surprise that people so highly placed were reading this blog in the midst of such an event, it contained some disappointing (although not horribly surprising) information about CNN correspondent Jane Arraf.
Many of us had just watched Ms. Arraf waiting with what “seemed” like great dismay in front of an empty polling station in Mosul. The Iraqis were not turning out to vote. Then, an hour or so later, she popped up at another polling place in the same city that was crowded with voters, explaining that she had “switched polling places.” But she hadn’t. According to my situation room correspondent, her first venue was not a polling place at all. For whatever reasons (embarrassment? bias? both?), Ms. Arraf omitted this important fact.

A Liberal Slice

Stephen Taylor has been generating pie graphs based on data pulled from the Elections Canada website. For example, this one represents the political contributions by party of the current CBC board of directors….

He’s tracked down the “corporate whores”, too.
Chris, at Striving Against Opposition decided to run the names of some of the 134 law professors who released a letter condemning Stephen Harper’s stance on traditional marriage through the Elections Canada donate-a-meter… what he found is not that surprising.

Rise To The Occasion

Principles are eternal. They stem not from our resolution or lack of it, but from elsewhere where, in patient and infinite ranks, they simply wait to be called. They can be read in history. They arise as if of their own accord when in the face of danger natural courage comes into play and honor and defiance are born. Things such as courage and honor are the mortal equivalent of certain laws written throughout the universe. The rules of symmetry and proportion, the laws of physics, the perfection of mathematics, even the principle of uncertainty, are encouragement, entirely independent of the vagaries of human will, that not only natural law but our own best aspirations have a life of their own. They have lasted through far greater abuse than abuses them now. They can be neglected, but they cannot be lost. They can be thrown down, but they cannot be broken.
Each of them is a different expression of a single quality, from which each arises in its hour of need. Some come to the fore as others stay back, and then, with changing circumstance, those that have gone unnoticed rise to the occasion.
Rise to the occasion. The principle suggests itself from a phrase, and such principles suggest easily and flow generously. You can grab them out of the air, from phrases, from memories, from images.”
Mark Helprin ; Statesmanship And Its Betrayal, April 1998


occassion.jpg

” No one in the United States should try to overhype this election. This election is a sort of demarcation point, and what really counts now is the effort to have a legitimate political reconciliation, and it’s going to take a massive diplomatic effort and a much more significant outreach to the international community than this administration has been willing to engage in.� Absent that, we will not be successful in Iraq.”
Sen.John Kerry, Meet The Press, Jan.30 2005.

“I Cannot Describe What I Am Seeing”



60%*

*- early estimate of 72% revised
CNN

Even in Falluja, the Sunni city west of Baghdad that was a militant stronghold until a U.S. assault in November, a steady stream of people turned out, confounding expectations. Lines of veiled women clutching their papers waited to vote.
“We want to be like other Iraqis, we don’t want to always be in opposition,” said Ahmed Jassim, smiling after he voted.
In Baquba, a rebellious city northeast of Baghdad, spirited crowds clapped and cheered at one voting station. In Mosul, scene of some of the worst insurgent attacks in recent months,
U.S. and local officials said turnout was surprisingly high.
One of the first to vote was President Ghazi al-Yawar, a Sunni Muslim Arab with a large tribal following, who cast his ballot inside Baghdad’s fortress-like Green Zone.
“Thanks be to God,” he told reporters, emerging from the booth with his right index finger stained with bright blue ink to show he had voted. “I hope everyone will go out and vote.”
[…]
Baghdad’s mayor was overcome with emotion by the turnout of voters at City Hall, where he said thousands were celebrating. “I cannot describe what I am seeing. It is incredible. This is a vote for the future, for the children, for the rule of law, for humanity, for love,” Alaa al-Tamimi told Reuters.

Husayn writes at his newly renamed blog, Democracy In Iraq (Is Here!) ;

What a day it has been. I am very tired, but I am at peace, something I havn’t felt in this regard before. I am happy to report that I found very few people during my post-voting trip through Baghdad who had not voted. I even got a few to “convert” and go out and vote. When confronted with the fact that staying away from voting was futile, some who had opposed the election relented, and went and made their mark.
Even now, I have no idea who is going to win, but it really isn’t important. It is enough for me to know that our new government won’t be the result of a sham election, that it will be the will of the people. We will not know who won for a few days, maybe weeks, but this is just a minor headache, and should not be taken by anyone to attack the election or it’s validity. We don’t have the machinery or technology available in the United States or other countries where you can find the result of elections overnight. We will one day though, and today is the first step on that path.
Let me end today’s posts with a picture I found of a woman who was so overcome with emotion at voting that she cried. I believe this picture symbolizes every Iraqi’s feelings today.

Jarvis has a fabulous roundup of quotes and links from bloggers in Iraq. Instapundit has lots, too.
Meanwhile, the networks are scrambling through the archives for material to fill the timeslots reserved for election bloodbath coverage. Jonah Goldberg, ” I just walked over to my computer after seeing that the Today Show was offering viewers a segment on new shaving technologies for men.”

Iraq Election Blogging

I’m having ISP problems this weekend, and finding it difficult to enter posts, so activity here may be light.
Don’t forget to keep up on Iraq election progress at Friends Of Democracy – it’s on the left, on the blogroll. Iraqis reporting from the ground, in Iraq.
update
Jeff Jarvis has a must read roundup of quotes from free Iraqis, as well.

Now, and thanks to other humans, not from my area, religion and who don’t even speak my language, I and all Iraqis have the real chance to make the change. Now I OWN my home and I can decide who’s going to run things in it and how and I won’t waste that chance. Tomorrow as I cast my vote, I’ll regain my home. I’ll regain my humanity and my dignity, as I stand and fulfill part of my responsibilities to this part of the large brotherhood of humanity. Tomorrow I’ll say I’M IRAQI AND I’M PROUD, as being Iraqi this time bears a different meaning in my mind. It’s being an active and good part of humanity. Tomorrow I and the Iraqis that are going to vote will rule, not the politicians we’re going to vote for, as it’s our decision and they’ll work for us this time and if we don’t like them we’ll kick them out! Tomorrow my heart will race my hand to the box. Tomorrow I’ll race even the sun to the voting centre, my Ka’aba and my Mecca. I’m so excited and so happy that I can’t even feel the fear I though I would have at this time. I can’t wait until tomorrow. – Ali – of Free Iraq

Liveblogging at Iraq Election Wire.

Skeptics And Heretics

Yesterday I had a brief meeting with the veterinary opthalmologist we’ve been working with in our ongoing research into retinal dysplasia in Miniature Schnauzers.
During our conversation, he mentioned his frustration with a decision by the Canine Eye Registry Foundation. CERF tracks the incidence of eye defects in breeds of dogs. Board certified veterinary opthalmologists use formal diagnostic forms that are designed to be read by computers and fed into the CERF database, which forms the basis for breed clubs and geneticists to track the prevalence of genetic eye disease.
Well, that’s how it’s supposed to work.
The researcher has been working on a specific type of retinal defect – retinopathy – in a handful of breeds. With several peer-reviewed published papers in the library, CERF concluded that the defect should be added to the form, so that data collection can begin.
However, for reasons unexplained, CERF decided to place retinopathy into the grouping of retinal dysplasias.
That’s problematic. Retinopathy is clinically and genetically distinct from retinal dysplasia. Placing it under an inappropriate category not only limits the ability to track this unique defect, it also corrupts the data on retinal dysplasia. It makes as much sense as lumping in statistics on schizophrenia with data on brain tumours.
Last night I was doing some surfing, and stumbled upon a discussion from Dean’s World from last month, titled HIV Skepticism, about the “sloppiness” of the research linking HIV to AIDS. It’s interesting reading, and even if you disagree with the premise (advanced in the book Inventing The AIDS Virus by Dr. Peter H. Duesberg), there are compelling arguments that conventional wisdom about “AIDS” may be as much politics and scientific group think, as it is scientific fact.
Dean Esmay has been interested in this for a few years;

Either Peter Duesberg was a monstrous liar or, by the mid-1990s at least, no one had ever demonstrated with any scientific rigor that HIV caused AIDS–and people had only come to believe it by a combination of well-meaning panic to stop a horrible disease, bureaucratic bumbling, pettypoliticking, and greed. No there was no conspiracy, but there was certainly a massive interlocking of government SNAFUs, scientists with huge conflicts of interest, a breakdown of the peer review process, and people in charge of that process who now had vested personal interests in maintaining the status quo.
Or: Duesberg was full of it. There really didn’t seem much alternative explanation. The man was too careful, too meticulous, and provided too much documentation. He had to be taken seriously, if only to prove him wrong.
Or so I thought.
Instead, there seemed a virtual press blackout on the book. Most of the reviews in the mainstream press were short, snotty, and condescending. It was clear that they weren’t interested in arguing with Duesberg, and when they didn’t sniff at him like rancid garbage they ridiculed him, and mocked anyone who wanted to take him seriously.
I began to feel like I was either wildly paranoid or this was a dizzyingly frightening look at just how the confluence of billions of dollars of government money, journalistic laziness and incompetence, and petty politicking had polluted medical science, science reporting, and public health policy.

In December, Dean contacted the author of a more recent book on Duesberg’s work – Oncogenes, Aneuploidy, and AIDS: A Scientific Life and Times of Peter H. Duesberg, one George L. Gabor Miklos, PhD.
Quoting the review in Nature Biotechnology, itself, worth reading in its entirety;

Oncogenes, Aneuploidy and AIDS should be compulsory reading for those concerned with`what the U.S. (and other Western) governments are buying when they spend public money on cancer and`AIDS research. It should also be compulsory for pharmaceutical and biotech executives, since most of`their potential targets for solid tumors are irrelevant entities that continue to clog drug development`pipelines.
Finally, it should be read by anyone who is interested in the way scientific theories develop and are`shaped by historical circumstances.

Miklos had this to say, in personal correspondance with Dean;

Bottom line; Duesberg is correct on both counts…on the basis of DATA…not hysteria. Your readers can be as angry as they like, but they should save their anger until after they have evaluated`clinical DATA…and then they should direct their anger at their own medical profession.
The scientific data do not support the hypothesis that the HIV virus causes AIDS.
If you have Kaposi sarcoma and you have antibodies to the HIV virus, the CDC says you`have AIDS…by definition!
If you are diagnosed with Kaposi sarcoma and you don’t have antibodies to HIV, then you don’t have AIDS…you have Kaposi sarcoma!….go figure!
Tell me Dean, if you are diagnosed with blue ears and you have antibodies to the HIV virus, the CDC would say that you have AIDS….if you don’t have antibodies to the HIV virus you would have blue ear disease….what a joke. Your own CDC essentially defines any disease where you have antibodies to HIV in your system as AIDS. If you have malaria and and you have antibodies to the HIV virus, the CDC would you have AIDS…by definition! So AIDS equals malaria…this is clinically stupid.
You ought to ask your readers.”What is AIDS?”…DEFINE IT!

Does it all seem too far out in left field to merit a look? Is it possible that the entire scientific community is basing its assumptions – and research – on AIDS on sloppy research, unsupported by the data?
Before answering that, go back to the top of my post, and re-read the portion about how the world’s most authoritative body on canine eye disease is collecting data on retinopathy.
(HIV Skepticism at Deans World)

Fun stuff

Outside the Beltway is having a “Fun with Fiction Contest

Rules:

It?s time to find out just how literate and witty OTB readers are. The goal is to change one letter of a book title so as to give the story an entirely new meaning. After the altered title, offer a one or two sentence explanation of the new story.

There are some pretty good entries there already.

Auschwitz Fashion SS

Jeff Goldstein provides the quintessential summation of the number one non-story of the week;

“In fact, my guess is that Gore could have shown up at Auschwitz wearing a suit made from Jackie Mason and trimmed with the ass hair of Woody Allen, and Givhan would have bent over backwards to frame the Democratic VP’s fashion choice as ‘a daring deconstruction of the kind of traditional ceremonial mourning practices that have turned commemorations of singular events like the Holocaust into mundane – and cynically commodified” photo ops for heads of state and /or their proxies.’ Or some such.”

Exactly.

Wardrobe Malfunction

Anheuser-Busch is pulling an advertisement planned for this year’s Super Bowl that would have poked fun at last year’s infamous “wardrobe malfunction” that exposed Janet Jackson’s breast during the halftime show, according to a published report.
The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that the ad would have shown…

Why bother with the description, when Wizbang has the video?

Small Dead Feminist

I don’t believe I’ve expressed my views on feminism.
This bit at I Could be wrong has prompted me to share.

If there are prejudices in Universities against women in science, they are remarkably subtle. The prejudices against men are institutionalized and overt. Concerning institutional restrictions against any speech the feminists don’t like: these restrictions are massive, overpowering, and virtually 100% intimidating. On the rare occasion such speech is uttered by a professor in a prominent university, it tends to be national news.

I speak as a woman who has worked in a male work setting for all of my adult life. I can say with some authority that the time has come to dismantle organized feminism.
Allow me to first acknowledge the pioneering work of those who did break ground in the struggle for equality rights for women – the right to vote, the right to equal opportunity in politics and employment and property rights. I have gratitude and the deepest respect for the accomplishments of those who were, at the time, considered little more than legal property, subject to the authority of male family members.
As they say, though – “that was then, and this is now”. The “then” that “was” has been consigned to the dustbin of history for quite a long time. What loose threads remained in women’s equality were tied up a long time ago.
If women were the rational, thinking human beings our acronymed advocates claim we are, “organized feminism” could even choose to commemorate the moment of the movement’s modern obsolescence��- if “organized feminism” wasn’t such a monotonously predictable leftist waste of female flesh.

The moment occured in 1979.
It came in the person of a woman named Margaret Thatcher.

Alas, in the eyes of organized feminism, this didn’t “count”. Margaret Thatcher’s ascent to the Prime Ministerial post in Great Britain – and two time re-election? Meaningless. An irrelevant footnote of history not worthy of true feminist recognition.
You see, Maggie Thatcher was a conservative, which unfortunately, made her a man.
(Had the grand “Iron Lady” only had the good sense to be a lesbian, the feminist movement would have died a natural death in an uncontrolled chain reaction of spontanious head explosions – but such was not to be.)
25 years have now passed, and Maggie Thatcher has lived long enough to see her accomplishments safely consigned to history. If her tenure as three-time Prime Minister of Great Britain are not sufficient to put the feminist movement to bed with a warm pat and a “well done”, well, this whole “equality” thing was just not meant to be.
Though women of today have demonstrated the ability to accumlate vast wealth and govern great nations, while women represent, numerically, the majority of humankind, we must accept that true “equality” can never be ours. The feminist movement has failed, through no fault of our own. It’s just that the goal wasn’t valid to begin with.
There’s no way around it, girls. It is time to throw in the towel and accept our inferiority to men.

Kosovo: Under The Radar

Guardian;

Kosovo is fast becoming “the black hole of Europe” and could descend into renewed violence within weeks unless the EU takes urgent action, senior diplomats and international experts warned in Brussels this week.
But continuing EU indecision over the breakaway province’s demand for independence from Serbia, coupled with the ethnic Albanian majority’s failure to embrace reform and respect Serb minority rights, are paralysing plans to launch “final status” talks this year.
Five years after Nato ejected Serbian forces and imposed an international administration, the UN and the US are still lacking an exit strategy. Serbia, meanwhile, wants its territory back.
In an attempt to show willing, Olli Rehn, the EU’s enlargement commissioner, met Kosovan leaders in Pristina this week. Mr Rehn said the EU would raise the issue when President George Bush visits Europe next month. But according to Erhard Busek, who heads the international stability pact set up after the 1990s Balkan wars to promote democracy and development in south-east Europe, the EU must take the lead.
“Kosovo is a European issue and we Europeans have to get our act together,” Mr Busek said. “If Kosovo goes wrong, we in Europe will be first to face the consequences of migration and organised crime.”
With unemployment approaching 60%, a disastrous lack of foreign investment, and with 50% of the population aged 25 or under, “there is a huge social problem – a timebomb in the making”.

Of course, this is getting wall to wall coverage from the Quagmire Watch Set.
Doug Hanson, at the American Thinker, “The prediction of EU impotence in the face of renewed violence and “payback” in the Balkans once US forces were withdrawn have, unfortunately, come true.”

How I Spent My Spring Vacation

Huh.
Someone wasn’t thinking.

Are YOU interested in spending up to 30 days along the Arizona border as part of a blocking force against entry into the U.S. by illegal aliens early next spring?
I invite you to join me in Tombstone, Arizona from APRIL 1 – 30, 2005 to protect our country from a 40-year-long invasion across our southern border with Mexico.
Chris Simcox of Civil Homeland Defense, and the publisher of the Tombstone Tumbleweed newspaper in Tombstone, Arizona has helped protect our borders for five years with only a handful of patriotic volunteers. It is time we provided him with reinforcements.
I am recruiting volunteers to converge on the southern border of Arizona for the purpose of aiding the U.S. Border Patrol in “spotting” intruders entering the U.S. illegally.
This is strictly a volunteer project. No financial subsidies are available. And, you will probably need a tent, sleeping bag, hiking gear, etc. You will be responsible for all costs associated with your participation.

Subsidies? I know people who would pay for the chance to do this.

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