Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Vet BS

I swore that I wasn't going to get embroiled in this political season baloney, but I've fallen across the ad about the "band of brothers" from Kerry once too often. What is this?

And... a group of brown water sailors have put together their own website putting up the truth about Mr. Kerry's "service", if you can call a 4 month stint incountry as service. (How come these guys got 4 month rotations when this dopey grunt had 4 tours as a door gunner before he got really short?)

Anyhow, the website sort of explodes the whole myth that the Donks are trying to use of Kerry as soldier and patriot. It all just makes me want to hurl. I can't stand it!  Besides, that band of brothers line originated with a REAL sailor, Admiral Nelson of the British Navy, and it chaps my ass to have a loser like Kerry trying to claim that kind of mythical stature. 

Go take a look and you'll see a unit photo that has the 3 pro-Kerry guys blocked out and the other 20 or so guys who think that the guy was a REMF loser (then and now) and a puke who any real Marine wouldn't follow into an Saigon whorehouse.


Monday, July 26, 2004


I spent all morning in court listening to the sad disfunctional people that seem to make up my entire case load. Actually, I'm not really that unhappy with the kids I have as I am so... so totally fed up with their amazingly lame parents.

I've got a great long rampage about crummy parenting but I know that there is no cure so I might as well shut up. It just wears me out, that's all. Thank goodness that the kids have a better chance of outliving their unfortunate choice in parents that any of us have of seeing an end to our own self administered unhappiness.

Needless to say, I continue to be amazed when some parental type is angry because their kid is facing a possession charge and the lousy parent  is in court wearing a Harley Davidson t-shirt and reeking of weed, complaining to the court about how the cops were hassling their kid. Sigh. Forty year old moron jailhouse lawyers who acquired all their legal expertise from watching Oz and Law and Order on cable TV. What a maroon! 

Some day this war's gonna end.


Sunday, July 25, 2004


My redheaded friend Elaine is perhaps the smartest lady I know. Now that the silly season has officially begun and the streets of Beantown are clogged with Democrats she has worked a deal with Blockbuster for unlimited DVDs for a month and she has filled her place with movies to keep me from dying of rant-itus.

What a girl!


Thursday, July 22, 2004


Now that the story of the Syrian boogeymen has made its full circuit of the bloggosphere the good folks at (of all places!) NRO, come up with a very good explanation of the nervous and wierd acting musicians: The guys were legit.

Does that mean that anything wrong happened? Nope. Were we foolish to relax and say Oh, what the hell. We're all just being needlessly paranoid? Nope. I'd say that the whole affair was very telling about how, collectively, we have been very much on the lookout and that it will be real real hard for anyone to f**k with us.

Keep up the good work. This should let the bad guys know for sure that we are all keeping a weather eye out.



My friend LeeAnn of The Cheese Stands Alone (see the list to the right --->. Anyhow, LeeAnn pushed one of my buttons yesterday: missed calls on the damned cell phone. Well...

Now first you have to understand that one of the eternal issues in most people's lives continues to be the question of Who is in control? Who's the boss? My grandfather explained it best once when he was admiring my Rolex wristwatch. He said that it was a nice watch but he wouldn't want one, that his pocket watch was what was best for him.
Really? Yeah, I don't want a damned watch telling me what to do.

Huh? Well, you have to decide whether time rules you or you rule time. If my grandfather wanted to know what time it was he would leisurely take out his pocketwatch and open it up and check the time, then he would put it back in his pocket where it would wait for him to take it out again. Now... that wrist watch of mine was always there nagging me about the time. You're late! Hurry up! Get with the program you sluggard! Grrr.

It's the same thing with that damned cell phone. You need one to stay on top of all the stuff that you have to stay on top of these days. Same thing with the watch. But who's the boss?

LeeAnn is one of those people who leave the cell phone on all the time, that way it can bark at her whenever it wants. Not me. I leave it off. If I want to use the phone then I will take out the thing and turn it on and call someone. My choice.

Gasp! What if you miss a call. Yikes! Bob... you have a job that requires you to be available 24/7. How can you turn that monster off? Easy. I have a pager on my belt, and if the folks at the office need me they can page me and it will vibrate discreetly and I will glance at it to see if I really want to call back. I decide what the priority is. I decide to do my own triage. Have I missed any calls? Nope. Have I managed to finish dinner before using the phone? Yep.

And let's admit it --- Don't you just hate being pushed around by the damned thing? Don't you just hate having a crappy little cell phone pushing you around? About 7 times out of 10 the "important" call back can wait until after dinner anyhow. How many times have you had to get up in a movie because you left the thing on? How many times have you been interrupted at dinner, or between the sheets, or at a concert?

Admit it --- don't you feel like throwing the damned chattering cell phone out the car window?

I never managed to throw away my Rolex, but I'm absolutely certain that my grandfather lived a better life than I do. He died with more money than I have too.

I'm only glad he left me the lesson.


Saturday, July 17, 2004

Well, let's set all this serious bloggery to one side  and get down to something more socially important and relevant ---
Go Here
There. A story with a happy ending.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

If any of you are feeling at all complacent, allow me to inject a shot of adrenalin into the mix: a recent experience of Annie Jacobson of the Woman's Wall Street and her family on a domestic flight cross country is enough to make the hair stand up on your neck. Read this.
If you think that any of our "protectors" are even close to having a handle on security you are dreaming.

Sunday, July 11, 2004


It was Benjamin Franklin who published the first American political cartoon. It was that "Join or Die" picture... eight pieces of cut up snake, each with the abbreviation of the state. Join or Die.

I always have liked Ben. He was a cheerful guy, something of a whoredog, a man not above taking the main chance, patriot, peddler, inventer, writer, hustler, agent provocateur. My kind of guy. But mostly what made him special was that he was a cheerful and optimistic guy in a world filled with dangers and risks and unopposable forces that were set on his destruction who did not flinch from what he knew needed to be done. Then did it.

Heck, he actually put on that ugly marten fur cap to prove his provincialism and still had the Parisian portrait artist Rosalie Filleul once say that she would look forward to kissing him (she was later guillotined for that indiscretion).

I'm rambling through this foolishness because Alice has teamed up with Wretchard to make me anxious for our future.

Wretchard is absolutely right to quote Churchill at this juncture. We are at another Munich crossroad. What happens now will echo down through the future. We can not afford to appease our enemies. They are too bent on our destruction, our utter annihilation, the cessation our little experiment in freedom.

And Alice has written with that frightening clarity that she is known for. This IS a struggle that we must win, even if we must travel the road alone.

But is this cause of grim despair? Hopefully not. I still naively cling to the kind of cheerful courage of the men who created this culture that was best characterized by Franklin. I really don't care if the rest of the world helps us or not. I don't care if the rest of the herd wants to play out another Munich.

There is a clear choice, but it is not really one of choosing among failures and fear of the future. The American ethos best characterized by Benjamin Franklin still prevails: a morality built on a sincere belief in leading a virtuous life, serving the country that we all love, and hoping to serve by doing good works.

Walter Isaacson says about Franklin's connection to the present: "Some who see the reflection of Franklin in the world today fret about a shallowless of soul and a spiritual complacency that seem to permeate a culture of materialism. They say that he teaches us how to live a practical and pecuniary life, but not an exalted existence. Others see the same reflection and admire the basic middle-class values and democratic sentiments that now seem under assault from elitists, radicals, reactionaries, and other bashers of the bourgeoisie. They regard Franklin as an exemplar of the personal character and civic virtues that are too often missing in modern America."

Yes, we are hedged in by enemies. So was Churchill, so was Franklin. But we will take up the sword and move towards the light, as did they. It really does not matter what the others do. Scroom.


Thursday, July 08, 2004


LeeAnn... cheer up! Can I buy you an Apple Martini? Drink two and then go dance the tango with that boyfriend of yours to Gladys Knight's new song. Yum! Just the thing to clear out the blahs.

The old Marines club (and others) need you to help all of us stay pumped. Keep smiling girl.



If you haven't gotten to it, go read The Belmont Club for today. Damn, this guy is good.


Tuesday, July 06, 2004


Two of my oldest friends are old timey died in the wool Democrats. When I saw Mr. Kerry swishing the other day I sent the post to both of them and asked for a comment. Why? Well, aside from the innate desire to be hateful to my friends, I also wanted to try to give them a voice outside of the shrillness of all those explosions on the internet that the medium is prone to on both sides.

The simple fact is, these guys have invariably provided me with the "other" take, and that is something that I for one need badly. To not take a careful look usually means that I'm about to get my comeuppance. Anyhow:

Dan Gilmartin is a political science expert, college professor, careful writer and deep thinker. Irish by genetic predisposition and stubbornly working class. A good guy. He starts with a rant about Michael Moore --

I saw Farenheit 9-11 today. Thank you Michael
Moore. I've read some negative reviews too, but
all in all, this is the one I agree
with. I don't agree with it all, and criticizing
Moore for exaggeration is partially valid, but
for the Right, criticism of Bush is un-American;
hell, asking a question is un-American. They've
forced people to take sides; Screw them, I've had
enough of their hypocritical cant -- I want the
bastids OUT.


June 30th, 2004 4:34 pm
NY Daily News: "A soaring display of American

Moore's message delivered, big-time
By Denis Hamill / New York Daily News
Tuesday, June 29th, 2004

You could have heard a tear fall.

As an American mother named Lila Lipscomb drowned
in anguish over the death of her son in Iraq, the
packed Loews Bay Terrace theater in Queens was so
silent at the 11 a.m. show of "Fahrenheit 9/11"
on Friday that all you could hear was the rustle
of tissues. I sat in the back of the theater,
with an unemployed construction worker from
Brooklyn, and as the movie played, I watched men
and women, young and old, wiping their eyes in

They were the tears of the nation this weekend as
"Fahrenheit 9/11" blazed from sea to shining sea
as the No.1 movie in America.

This was a brand-new moviegoing experience.

Since I started going to the movies at age 4 at
the RKO Prospect in Brooklyn, I don't think I've
ever sat with an audience so personally involved
with the story being told on screen. This was
not, after all, some exploding-fireball

No, the exploding fireballs in this film are
real. The dead people in this film are real. The
dialogue is real. Real soldiers, real victims,
real mothers, real dead kids. The bad guys, as
portrayed by filmmaker Michael Moore, are all too

The only thing fake is this administration's
reasons for going to war, exploiting the nearly
3,000 deaths of Sept. 11 so that a rich kid who
went AWOL from the National Guard during the
Vietnam War could send American troops to die in
Iraq and call himself a "war prez'dint."

And the reason the people in the audience, the
American people, get so involved in this movie is
because we are all extras in the story.

The film - as sidesplitting as it is
heartbreaking - is a soaring display of American
patriotism, one that defies classification
because it is a personal statement, the way
Thomas Paine's "Common Sense" was something brand
new in its bloody day. As Paine wrote,
"Government, even in its best state, is a
necessary evil; in its worst state, an
intolerable one."

Moore doesn't tolerate Bush's government.
Sometimes we need a smart, funny, common Joe to
make some common sense out of what's happening in
his country. If there had been cameras around
back in the day, Tom Paine might have made a
documentary instead of writing a pamphlet urging
independence from England.

"Fahrenheit 9/11" oozes with patriotism because
it is a loud celebration of our great Bill of
Rights, telling our commander in chief that we
think his war stinks in an election year.

Look, the Bush campaign spent $85 million in
three months trying to convince the electorate
that John Kerry is a flip-flopping left-wing
threat to national security. Moore spent
$6million to make his documentary showing that
Bush is an arrogant, self-serving, dangerous
buffoon who is a threat to national security.

"Fahrenheit 9/11" is also a corrective to the
daily drumbeat of right-wing talk radio, which
slants the news to fit a radical agenda. Yet the
Rush Limbaughs and Sean Hannitys scorn Michael
Moore for daring to express his point of view
with pictures. But Americans don't like
hypocrites. And so they are forking over $10 a
head to say so, in places like Queens and
Brooklyn and small working-class towns and
neighborhoods across the fruited plain from which
come the kids who do the dying in America's good
and bad wars.

"Fahrenheit 9/11" also has been picked apart by
the legitimate press. But this is because Moore
spanks the American news media for being swept up
in the myopic post-9/11 patriotic hysteria,
allowing themselves to be "embedded" by the
administration and spoon-fed jingoistic Iraqi war

"Fahrenheit 9/11" is also a testament to American
capitalism, because nowhere else on the planet
could a working-class guy from a place like
Flint, Mich., grow up to skewer the President of
the United States with his own words and actions
and turn it into the biggest-grossing documentary
in history, taking in $21.8 million in its
opening weekend.

This is a great American Horatio Alger story, one
that every American should applaud.

Which is exactly what the audience in Queens did
last week after George W. Bush mangled his final
sentence and the end credits rolled. I was as
emotionally moved by the applause as I was by the
film, because that was the powerful sound of "Joe
Public," as Bush refers to We the People.

Out here in the opinionated boroughs, I expected
some boos. I didn't hear one. Instead, I left
with a deeply moved crowd, passing a long line
for the next show.

Back in Brooklyn, the unemployed construction
worker bought a bootleg copy of "Fahrenheit
9/11," shot with a camcorder in a movie house.

He called to say, "Even the audience in the
bootleg film applauds at the end."


Then he adds this about the clip of Kerry:

Let me get in line to agree with Mike. All this
Gang of Thugs cares about is the millions in
their corporate buddy's tax breaks. That's not
populist bullshit -- its not my fault that some
people can't do basic arithmetic. Sweet Jesus,
get off the fantasy syllogisms and look around.

I still love ya Bob.



Mike Broussard is one of the smartest guys I've ever met, and is probably the best lawyer in Orlando. He's a very serious guy when it comes to things that he believes in passionately and he is one of those guys who has always put his money where his mouth is. I'll say this, I only really respect two lawyers and he is one of them.

Mike says:

Bob: I enjoyed your light reading piece on Kerry, but feel compelled to respond with a television-related story of my own. I am sure you expected nothing more, or less.
I'm watching the news and the story is on McCain's campaign swing for Dubya. McCain is at the podium speaking solemnly about the war on terror, the sacrifice required and in particular, that the ultimate sacrifice suffered by so many of our young men recently being justified by the demands of the war on terror.
On the edge of the screen you see Dubya, who is on the stage with McCain. He is joking and carrying on with some of the fat white men who cluster around him routinely. No clue is the distinct impression the scene gives me.Total disconnect. Now, that scares me much more than Kerry looking like a fairy on the baseball diamond. Wonder how Kerry looked while in country in 1968. Contrast with Bush getting drunk at Yale, as a cheerleader. Scared yet?
Hope all is well with you.MBroussard


Bob: I'll respond by telling a tale. I'm having a beer with my father-in-law. I know him to be a life-long Republican. I say "Stuart, I know you're a life-long Republican, why is that?"
Stuart said" Well, my father was a Republican and I just feel like the Dems. give too much money away."
Stuart then said "Mike , I know you are a life-long Democrat. Why is that?" I said"Well, my father was a Democrat and I feel like the Republicans give too much money away."
Bob' it's all about the constituency. Do you really think the "publicans" tax breaks, reduction of gov't , and anti-abortion policy benefit you at all? You didn't get a tax break, the only gov't reduction is in areas that benefit the big boys and you will never have an abortion. John Kerry and the dems. may be less attractive to you than the Bush machine, but don't think they really care about you.
As always, great to hear from you and keep those cards and letters coming.MBroussard


Well, there it is. These are both very convincing guys. Both of them have better noodles than this old country boy. Seems like a long time till November. I just hope they aren't calling the bail bond office looking for some help before then. Don't worry guys... I'll get you out. Hmmm... now about that collateral.



As proof of the fact that I am grimly determined to be a free thinking and independent fellow I recently followed orders blindly and without any forethought when the Honorable Kim Du Toit told all of us to check out a certain blogger in Texas who has recently transplanted herself from England to Texas:


As usual. He is precisely on target. The lady is entirely as advertised. One of those libertarians who is not a remake of Randian-ness... a burst of cheerful independence. I love it.

Thanks Kim. This lady is the goods.

I'm putting her on my blogroll and sending her an email as we speak. I like it!


Monday, July 05, 2004


I just went off to lunch at Lam's Gardens and was sitting there dribbling sweet and sour goo on my shirt while watching CNN. The usual.

John Kerry was doing a photo op at some baseball game with him pitching and... oh, my.

The guy runs like a swish and throws a ball like a girl! Folks, this is scarey.

And this guy wants to be the president of the United States? Please... oh, please. Oh.... Please.

Suddenly, I'm scared. The guy runs with his hands up like a hairdresser! And throws a ball as if he were overhanding a tube of KY to his boyfriend!

God help us.


Saturday, July 03, 2004


One of the things that spooks me during this season of political foolishness is the quiet murmur of trial balloons rising from the camp of presidential hopeful Senator Hillary Clinton.

Most of us have known for a long time that this lady is the real horrorshow behind the Clinton Whitehouse. Her husband has never been famous for using the head that has the brain in it. But her... now that's one serious apparatchik for you. My friend Jim at Smoke On The Water recently jingled that little bell again. Of course, in his inimitable way he just came right out and used the big C word (yeah, called an American senator a communist... but let's face it, he, like most sailors, has good eyesight).

The trial montgolfier in question came from a newspaper article about a comment made by Mrs. Clinton that appeared in a San Francisco story where she said before a fundraiser of rich Democrats, "We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good." How appropriate that it should go up in the press of the far left in that town of lefties.

Jim's observation is apt: these are the words of a communist and it is a good thing that the gloves are finally off. It's a good thing that the American Communists are finally coming out of the closet. It's always a good idea to know the enemy.

What worries me is this -- Kerry is so addled that he may ask for her to join the ticket while they are at the convention so that he'll have a shot at winning. Why else would the Dems play this endless game of coy refusal all this time with no VP candidate in the slot? Think about it... Hillary and another weak man at the helm of the ship of state. Now there's a disturbingly familiar scenario, isn't it? It's a win/win for Lady Macbeth. If she loses she is automatically the frontrunner for the NEXT campaign, when she can run as the candidate for the front slot.

And... that's when the Republicans will be weakest, right? Jeb's older brother can only run twice. The governor of Florida is a nice guy but I'm not sure he is as tough as his older bro or his daddy in spite of the fact that this political dynasty has been the most successful group of Republican politicians in history.

Think about the TV script of the plucky First Lady. The first woman in the big arena. The first chance of the ladies to show all of us dopey guys that all we ever needed was a woman's touch. Unfortunately, this woman's touch comes from one of the coldest and hardest and most calculating liberal leftists in modern times. This is another political woman like Mao's wife. Just think... Robert Mugabe in a skirt. Now there's a picture right out of the Heart of Darkness. Scarey, eh?

Yeah, Jim. Thanks for giving me the willies.


Thursday, July 01, 2004

My friend Elaine, the woman I usually refer to as "The Redhead", runs a bar and restaurant in Sanford, Otters, and is the lady who usually feeds me, tells me to shut up, and otherwise keeps me in sort of line. It's part of the marina where I usually keep my sailboat home. Anyhow... she's gone for a week visiting relatives in the frozen north, and I've been cast loose to wreak havoc on the hired help... in this case, the replacement bartender: a yummy bit of pastry named Courtney, 25, faintly reminiscent of a young Norma Jean only smarter... college grad from a Hospital Admin program in the college I used to teach at, piddling along tending bar rather than settling down with a "real" job. In other words, just my type, but way way too young for an old dog like me and I'm afraid I know it just as well as she does so there's no sense in even trying to make a hit. Besides, Elaine would kill both of us and I know it. Anyhow --

I'm sitting there about to put myself around one of Otter's famous fruit salads (low cal? you gotta be kidding!) watching CNN on the cable in the bar. All of the action is outside where there's another whole bar beside the pool that is part of the restaurant. Did I tell you that this is a nice place? It is.

"Bob... whatcha think of this deal with Saddam?"

"I think that it's going as planned."

Somebody else.... she points to a half sloshed older guy slumped over a New York Iced Tea at the end of the bar. "Phil, what did you say about Saddam?"

"I said they should hang him up by his sack and put it on TV."

"You agree with that?" Courtney is a bright girl but is not above egging a couple of old boat dogs on. Another customer, about four sheets to the wind, chimes in with something similar suggestion that involves rusty chainsaws and Tabasco.

"Well, none of these guys have ever actually taken a life so I doubt if they have the stomach for any real vivisection."

"Yeah? Smart ass. What the effin heck is viviwhatsis?" The guy beside my friend Phil turns to him and waves his draft in my direction.

I conciliate: "Does he have it coming? You bet. Do I want to be the guy to pull the switch? Nope. I just wish the guy would leave in a hurry and don't mess up the sheets. I like the way his sons went out... fast and without any court of appeals. The way these "trials against war crimes" usually go, we'll still be fuming about the jerk when Courtney here actually finishes her Masters degree and leaves the business of libido massaging to become a hospital administrator."

"Uh... Ick.. I think"

That shut her up. My dad used to say that sex and politics are both topics that should be kept out of barrooms. Hmmm.... yeah.

Elaine... you need to come home.