a left leaning political blog -- it's not really about pie
a political blog, mostly, with a few cat pictures

Wednesday, November 27, 2002

What am I thankful for?

Thanksgiving, the annual festival of gluttony. It's a time to forget about the fat content of foods and just eat. That's what I'm thankful for. I can hardly wait.

If they made a law saying that there could only be one holiday per year, I would want it to be Thanksgiving. In fact, I really couldn't care less for the other holidays. There's something primal about the annual harvest festival. Maybe the it's the celebration of the filling up of the root cellar (do they still have those?) with vegetables and apples, and hunkering down for a snowy three months by the fireplace that appeals to me in a way. I have never lived anywhere that it snows, so maybe that accounts for some of my peculiarity.

I lived in San Francisco for 16 years. I did not go home for holidays much, because of crowded planes, so I have cooked a few thanksgiving dinners myself:

-The lowfat Thanksgiving (eww) *
-The vegetarian Thanksgiving (no, not vegan. I cook with butter on special occasions. Lots of butter.) ***
-The traditional Thanksgiving -- you know, brown n' serve rolls, Mrs. Cubisons dressing and that cranberry stuff that comes out shaped like the can. **
-The "all from scratch" thanksgiving. Oh. My. God. *****

The "all from scratch" year was the year to beat. I started cooking 5 days before thanksgiving -- I made the bread, which had to be dried out for stuffing by the day before thanksgiving. I spent the whole day before thanksgiving cooking. There were no cans opened, no processed food of any kind used. Okay, I didn't make the white wine, which was used with melted butter to baste the turkey. It was exhausting. It was the best food I have ever eaten anywhere. And I have eaten some good food.

On the really good years, after the food, you couldn't even think of dessert, which, of course, is pie. Mmmmm, pie -- one of the best types of desserts. So you have to go for a walk or something and have the pies much later -- apple pies, pumpkin cheesecakes, and pumpkin pies. Does it get any better?

We are going to be closely watching our caloric intake starting on friday, but for now I can think of little else than going to bed on thursday feeling that I don't want to be that full of food again for at least another year.

Xymphora alerts us to this interesting article on the history of Arabia and it's western imposed borders. It clearly explains why Osama wants Saddam out, too.

William Burton on Defense Spending


Tuesday, November 26, 2002

I have to link to this:

Ralph, Don't Run

Thursday, November 21, 2002

Homeland Security Act (pdf)

This is the version that was passed -- in case anyone is interested.

Wednesday, November 20, 2002

Remember when the New York Times reported that "twelve Israelis were killed (in Hebron) Friday night when Palestinian snipers ambushed Jewish settlers walking home from Sabbath prayers?" Well, it turns out that "the 12 Israelis killed in the attack were later identified as four Israeli soldiers, five "border police," (weapons and military uniform are qualitatively indistinguishable from regular Israeli occupation troops), and three plain clothes members of a paramilitary security force operating from Kiryat Arba settlement, equipped with standard army jeeps and weapons." (thanks, cursor.org)

The new Israeli opposition Labour Party leader says that his election shows that Israelis are prepared to start negotiating with the Palestinians once again. He will face Sharon in the general elections on january 28. "Mr Mitzna said that if elected prime minister, he would reverse Mr Sharon's course by withdrawing unilaterally from the Gaza Strip and negotiating with any Palestinian leadership." (thanks, cursor.org)

In Bush's speech to Nato, he stated that he "warned Iraqi President Saddam Hussein on Wednesday that should he deny possessing weapons of mass destruction, he will have entered his "final stage" as Iraq's leader."

So let me get this straight -- if Iraq has WMD, we attack. If Iraq doesn't, but they fail to say that they do, we attack. Got it.

William Rivers Pitt talks about the suspicious timing of "terror alerts." (thanks, cursor.org)

This article says that a "Democratic dream scenario is actually possible" in the Senate. (thanks, cursor.org)

Lisa English alerts us to this Al Gore interview from NPR.

Tuesday, November 12, 2002

Move on -- nothing to see here.

Did you ever say to yourself that if you turn on cnn or read anything about current events, at all, you will just, just, well, something. And you feel as if you are looking at a train wreck and what ever happened to this county? You love it, but you feel hatred, too, down underneath somewhere, because people don't educate themselves before they go vote, or the election would have turned out differently. This can't be happening. And you feel a deep sick feeling because you are afraid that the next president of the united states might be Jeb Bush -- six years from now, and maybe we have even taken a permanent turn to the right, because the republicants just have to keep every one scared of being blown up to stay in power. People that are scared of being blown up don't worry about losing their jobs, or the environment, or passing on a huge debt to their grandchildren. Just keep up the phony terror alerts and call countries where people are islamic and have good weapons "terrorist," even though they have never been responsible in any way for a single terrorist act. The republicants will get them. Forget compassion -- are you soft? What's wrong with you, you stupid liberal who used to be a socialist? You are so far out of the mainstream, it's ridiculous. Do you really think you can change anything with your stupid little blog? Think again.

Did you ever say that to yourself?

(Free pie will be on a brief hiatus, just until things start looking a little better.)

Thursday, November 07, 2002

I didn't do any sort of election wrap-up yet, so go to James M. Capozzola's fine blog, The Rittenhouse Review for his "sampling of perspectives on the results of yesterday’s elections from some of the best political commentators in the country."

(Thanks, James, for including me!)

Wednesday, November 06, 2002

Got an email from Dianne Feinstein today!

It's a reply to my email of October the 6th, regarding Iraq. On the same day, I sent hard copies as well as emails to Feinstein, Boxer, and Christopher Cox, my rep in congress. Two days later, I got a 5 page letter from Cox, explaining why we have to invade Iraq. Boxer is off the hook for not responding, because she voted correctly. Feinstein is another story.

This was Feinstein's reply to me:

"Currently I receive approximately 30,000 letters and e-mails a week, but due to system requirements, I am unable to adequately address messages that are not sent directly through my website."

(I had sent the email through the congress.org website. )

Here's my reply:

Senator Feinstein:

I'm sorry to hear that you and your staff are so overworked.

As it happens, my letter to you concerned a very urgent matter. I was stating my opposition to the resolution on Iraq, which the Senate voted on that same week. That was a month ago. I got your reply today, stating that you cannot reply to emails sent to your congress.org email address.

I'm sure a great number of people did the same thing I did on that day. It seems that you will never know how many.

If you cannot respond to emails sent to you through the congress.org website, you can have an autoresponder immediately send a reply from you, explaining that you do not reply to emails sent to that address. Or, even better, and easier, you can have emails sent to that address automatically forwarded to the email address that you do respond to.

Replying a month late is as good as not replying at all. I was under the impression that my representatives in the Senate were interested in the views of their constituents. I guess I was mistaken.

kim osterwalder

UPDDATE: I just got another five page letter from Christopher Cox (R). No wonder he keeps getting re-elected!

On the bright side, Joshua Micah Marshall says that the election results are actually bad for President Bush's reelection prospects in 2004. He promises to write more on that later.

I have to quote Maru today:

I heard on the news coming in this morning that the Democrats are in shock, they don't know what hit them, and that heads are going to roll. Well duh. After spending the past two years cowering or fawning to the White House, and caving in to practically every little thing, they're surprised? Hell, when they weren't humping Karl Rove's leg they allowed themselves to be portrayed as unpatriotic, traitorous crybabies (thank you, media whores, for all your help there).

Not only that, but leaders Tom 'Isadora' Daschle and Dick 'Fluffy' Gephardt did fantastic imitations of invisible mimes, for petessake. It seems like the only thing I've heard from them is the sound of both of them kissing WH ass.

Pathetic jellyfish don't usually win votes.

And WTF is wrong with Florida???!

Tuesday, November 05, 2002

I've just been prevented from voting.

The polling place for my precinct is in the middle of a gated community, where there are homes in the million dollar plus range. The guard at the gate was instructed not to let any one in that doesn't live there, including the riff raff who only want to come in to vote. I live about 50 yards away.

I called the police and the registrar of voters. They both told me that they will call me back when they have figured out where I can vote. I hope it doesn't take all day. If if it takes more than a few hours, I will start making more phone calls.

UPDATE: The registrar of voters called me back in about 40 minutes later, and said that I could go to my polling place. I wonder how many people got turned away at the gate and didn't vote, because they didn't know who to call.

Monday, November 04, 2002

Thanks, Scoobie Davis, for linking to me.

Saturday, November 02, 2002

The Pentagon Plan to Provoke Terrorist Attacks

"According to a classified document prepared for Rumsfeld by his Defense Science Board, the new organization--the "Proactive, Preemptive Operations Group (P2OG)"--will carry out secret missions designed to "stimulate reactions" among terrorist groups, provoking them into committing violent acts which would then expose them to "counterattack" by U.S. forces. "

What a great idea!

Nader redeems himself -- in part

Nader Is Supporting Some Democrats

"I certainly don't want Republicans controlling Congress," he said.

Unfortunately, he was happy to hand over the executive branch to them.