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Today was a rough day. Started at 6:45 with yet another wrong number by the home of Pamela White, who may very well get a phone call from me next time I stay up late. Gracie sealed the deal on my early morning by yowling for me to get up and pay attention to her. That's the last time I let the food dishes run down to empty overnight. And work was pretty much non-stop from beginning to end.

I was thinking today that I'm getting too old for this. It really is a young person's game, working floor staff at the climbing gym, being on your feet the entire shift, wolfing down your lunch in the ten minutes between parties, while standing at the main desk. The climbing for free on my off-hours is great, and I don't have to pay a membership fee, and I like the idea of them paying me to climb instead of the other way around.

But still: I'm getting too old for this. All I wanted to do when I got home was sit in my chair and put my feet up.

I stopped at the supermarket on the way home from the gym. There's a Klezmer concert at my synagogue tomorrow night, and admission is a bag of nonperishable food. Since I haven't donated tzedaka in a while, I bought a bunch of things that I thought a needy person would like to eat. On the way into the market, however, I saw two Muslim women. One was just wearing the hijab, while the other was dressed in the full-length gear, leaving only her face and hands exposed. I checked to see if my Star of David was inside or outside my shirt.

You know, I never used to care. It was always out, but I often wear it inside my shirt when I work at Peak because I usually wear two shirts, and it winds up inside one or both of them. I did not want to experience The Look that I often get from Muslims when they see my star. It was inside. I passed the younger woman in an aisle. She was chasing her young son. I smiled at them when she picked him up. No response, really.

Oh, well. |




Scott Koenig has the best one-liner about Moonbat Mahathir's endorsement of John Kerry.

Scott at AMCGLTD has a post that runs through the last 1400 years history in about 24 paragraphs. In it, he compares the history of Christianity to the history of Islam, and discusses the differences. Not religion; organization. Go, read, and have at him in the comments if you disagree with what he wrote. Don't bother me here about it.

This post is inspiring me to create yet another song parody:

Won't you forgive me, Bigwig?
Won't you forgive?
It's been a long cold shoulder
I'll give you link-love baby
And Carnivals
C'mon, let's have this over
'member that first Silflay link
so long ago?
You were still a solo blogger
I know I was mad
But I'm not really bad
So Bigwig won't you please forgive?

I was thinking: Mac, we need another Captain Euro post. I think you should bring him to Alabama and have him go after St. Roy. Come to think of it, I should do another Hulk post.

Steve Silver has moved. Update your links accordingly. (Congrats, Steve, you're off Blogspot!) By the way, if you follow this advice, you won't be sleeping with that girlfriend ever again. Just my two cents.

Oops. I missed the day. But 187 people ordered pizza for the IDF because of this post. Well done.

And I'm done for now. I have to go add a rule to my spam filters that excludes all mail from Megan. I'm so tired of her sending me the same thing over and over again. Megan, of course I want to hear good news. You can keep the bad news for yourself. Sheesh. |

Once more, with passion

Yeah, I just like to start tweak people. I'm not really bad, I'm just—oh, wait, yes I am.

Here's the real danger of having comments: They're javascript, and they slow down the page load time. Haloscan has server issues from time to time. All the free comment services do. They may not stay for very long.

On the other hand, it's making me think harder about switching to Movable Type. |

The Mad Commenter

I have figured out what I like about comments. Now I get to be snarky even more of the time, in a different venue. Had I but realized how much fun comments could be, I might have gotten them years ago. No, I'm actually lying, I didn't want them years ago because I had no readers, and it's pretty pathetic to make up all those pretend names and make people think you have people talking to you, not that I want to mention any names, but there are some well-known bloggers with split personalities (also known as Dissociative Identity Disorder, though I would have thought the word was Disassociative, but hey, what do I know about mental illness, I can't even end an effing sentence?). Ahem. Not that I'm accusing them of making up other people supposedly posting on their blogs, or in their comments. No. I'd never accuse them of that.


Yes, it's true that I went through almost every comment thread on the page today and added something, ah, less than serious. It wasn't someone pretending to be me. This time. Why did I do it? Um... Michele made me do it. |



My IEAPD pictures

Rebecca at the end of her IEAPD mealAs promised, here are my IEAPD pictures, featuring Rebecca G., who simply revels in eating all forms of meat. It's a bit of a high-bandwidth page. And I'm sorry, Larry, but this thumbnail is all you're going to get today. This is a very high-bandwidth page for me, with a fair amount of large photos. I like to be nice to my 56k modem readers. Another time. I still haven't put up the Hulk Hands pictures, I think. |

A "lull" in Israel

Let's take a look at the latest "lull," shall we? Exhibit A:

IDF discovers 5-kilo bomb near Itamar
IDF forces in Samaria discovered and detonated a 5-kilogram bomb placed on the road leading to the settlement of Itamar.

This is the third time this week the IDF thwarted a bomb attack in the area of Nablus. On Monday, Fatah Tanzim terrorists in Nablus attempted to use an 11-year-old boy to smuggle a bomb through the Hawara checkpoint. A day later, soldiers discovered a 10-kilogram bomb hidden inside a truckload of goods leaving the city.

Exhibit B:

5 attacks thwarted in Jerusalem in last 2 weeks
Five Palestinian terror attacks were thwarted in Jerusalem over the pastlast two weeks alone, Border Police Chief David Tsur revealed Wednesday.

[...] The last suicide bombing in the capital was a February 22 bus bombing that killed 8 people.

The border police chiefTsur added that "dozens" of potential attacks, in various planning stages, were thwarted nationwide over the last few weeks., which he said,. Similarly, he said security forces have seen a dramatic increase in the amount of terror-related activity.

The primary reason for the successful preventions was He cited intelligence information provided by the Shin Bet, Tsur saidas the primary reason for such success.

At a Jerusalem press conference reviewing border police activity over the last year, Tsur said that his forces had arrested hundreds of terror suspects and uncovered 383 bombs in 2003.

[...] Like virtually every other Israeli security official, Tsur said that the security fence going up around Jerusalem would lead to a significant decrease in terror attacks in the capital.

Exhibit C:

Tanzim cell planned to hijack 2 buses
A terrorist plan to hijack two buses in the Efrat area and drive them to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem was foiled by Israeli security services earlier this month, the Shin Bet released for publication Thursday.

The hijackers, two senior employees of the Palestinian Authority, were to have been kitted out with explosives belts and would threaten to blow themselves up inside the buses. The cell planned to show the bus driver their explosives belts, and direct the driver to take the buses to the nativity church, where they planned to conduct negotiations with Israeli authorities.

The Israeli passengers were to be held hostage until authorities succumbed to the terrorists' demand to release Palestinian security prisoners. According to the information released for publication, the terrorists also planned to attach a remote-controlled bomb to one of the passengers.

According to the plan, if Israel failed to release the prisoners, the buses would be blown up as near as possible to the church. This particular Tanzim cell was also responsible for the last two bus bombings in the capital, security services revealed. Nineteen Israelis were murdered in the attacks on the numbers 14 and 19 buses.

[...] Security responsibilities for Bethlehem was handed over to the Palestinian Authority in the summer of 2003, and since then the terror infrastructure in the city has blossomed.

The Tanzim cell's explosives 'engineer' was an employee of the PA's Preventive Security service, and he also worked as the bodyguard of Bethlehem's mayor.

How about we have Christians protesting that, instead of coming up with new ways to blame Jews for the death of Jesus? And, oh, yeah—still more proof that the PA is not only not fighting terrorism, but is responsible for a significant portion of it. I notice now that the new line, taken even by some Israeli analysts, is that Arafat has lost control and cannot stop the terrorism. Bullshit. He's done it before. He can do it again. If he felt the necessity, he'd crack down in a heartbeat. But he thinks it suits him more to have Israeli children dying on their way to school. Die already, you sick, twisted murderer. |

Reader mail

I'm still not really up to writing The Anti-Corrie piece I promised you, so I think I'll publish some reader mail instead. From Gary R.:

That joke was *very* funny. But I thought I'd remind you that it can't possibly be true, because no Jew could have been praying at the Western Wall every day for 50 years. From 1948 to 1967, the old city of Jerusalem was under Arab control and Jews were barred from their holiest sites while Arabs used them for garbage dumps and toilets.

Still a very funny joke, though.

Yes, I knew that, and ditto on the joke.

M.N.L. says:

The Saudis bought 18% controlling interest about 15 -18 years ago.

That would explain Reuters' anti-Semitism, but in my quick lookaround, I couldn't find the documentation that shows who Reuters' major stockholders are. So the jury's out on that until I have definitive proof.

Ken M. on the various Passion fears:

Given what you (as a people) have been through over the last 5,000 years, I think a bit of paranoia is to be expected. In proper proportion, paranoia has a lot of survival value.

Sometimes paranoia is just paranoia (which doesn't mean that someone else out there isn't really out to get you). Sometimes paranoia is being the first one to clearly deduce the real danger coming up. I don't think you can afford the luxury of giving up all of your paranoia.

I couldn't agree more. I'm not paranoid, they really are out to get me. Just read the news.

Regarding my query on why new bulbs are brighter than old ones, Mike S. writes:

When a bulb gives off light, it is because the filament is actually burning. Combustion is going on (albeit very, very slowly, in an environment with almost no oxygen), and as the filament burns, it gets smaller and thinner, and puts out marginally less light. When a light burns out, it is because enough of the filament has been burned away that it collapses and the circuit is broken.

Nick S. agrees:

Well, a filament in a lightbulb is a coiled bit of metal, and each time you turn the bulb on and off the filament heats and cools. Over time, the repeated heating and cooling cycle degrades the metal (hence why it eventually busts) and hence degrades the physical properties of the coil. Therefore, if it is true that the lumen output depends on the properties of the metal (including the geometry, i.e. the tightness of the coil), then it would follow that the lumen output would be highest at the start of its life and lowest at the end.

Peter D. says:

Meryl, older light bulbs are dimmer because the white coating on the inside tends to yellow a bit from the heat. Also dust and suchlike tends to bake on the outside. This is very noticeable in a kitchen where there is a lot of frying or the light near a smoker's favorite chair.

And on the topic of the mutant hair, he adds:

About those rogue hairs...Everything God takes away, He gives back. the hair that used to grow out of my scalp is now growing out of my nose, ears and back. Enjoy getting older, it beats the heck out of the alternative.

And that empty the mailbox for the day, except for all those links I have to get to. I promise, Scott, I'll get to it soon. Meantime, my readers can sneak a peek at it before I do if they like. And I'll get to the other requested linkage as well. Promise. |

Bringing Daniel Pipes to Richmond

A student group called Supporters of a Safe Israel at Virginia Commonwealth University wants to bring Daniel Pipes to VCU for a lecture. However, due to the current anti-Israel climate on many college campuses, whenever a group brings a pro-Israel speaker, the colleges demand extra security due to the protests and controversy that will ensue.

SSI needs to raise extra money for both the security (which is a few hundred dollars)* and the honorarium for Dr. Pipes. I've met with these students over the past year, and my synagogue's rabbi is now advising them. It's a good organization, dedicated to fighting the anti-Israel bias on campus with events like this one, and one on March 30th that will bring a member of Yad Vashem to speak about the anti-Israel bias of the palestinian media (among other things).

*Edited to fix a mistake about the funding needed

If you can spare the funds, please send a check (made out to VCU Supporters of a Safe Israel) to:

Virginia Commonwealth University
University Student Commons and Activities
907 Floyd Avenue, Suite 018
P.O. Box 842032
Mailbox # 190
Richmond, VA 23284-2032

I'll be at the lecture, with my tape recorder and digital camera. Readers will get a first-hand report.

If you'd like to do something about the anti-Israel bias, here's a chance. Send five or ten or twenty dollars—whatever you can spare. It will be greatly appreciated. As would other bloggers linking to this post. |

The Holocaust on your Plate, redux

Backspin, the weblog of Honest Reporting, has the facts on the PETA campaign that started IEAPD. They're running it in Germany now, and running into Germany's anti-hate laws. And while I don't approve of the thought-crime mentality, I have to get a little bit of schadenfreude at PETA's being charged with one in Germany. They're using the same pictures, the same lies, the same everything—this in spite of being told by Elie Wiesel that they did not have his countenance to run that famous picture of the men in the bunks in Auschwitz (he is in the picture). Of course, this is unsurprising: PETA lies. And lies. And lies. Plus, they steal.

Go read (and see) for yourself.

And just in case you haven't had your fill of Reuters' Jew-hatred (it's not anti-Zionism), the headline to the article Backspin links to is

German Jews Attack Vegetarian Ad Campaign

Reuters: That unbiased organization that insists on corporate independence. Uh-huh. |

One of those mornings

So I woke up this morning from a rather deep sleep. I slept through a phone call, which is an extremely rare occasion for me. Even though I have only one phone ringer on, downstairs, on the quietest ring possible, I wake up for about 99% of all phone calls that arrive during my sleep hours. I have extremely acute hearing. It's my blessing and my curse. You do not want to whisper around me. I can hear what most of you are whispering, because you all aren't freaks with overly-sensitive hearing that causes you to wake up when someone knocks on the next-door-neighbor's door. No, I'm not kidding. As I say, it is my curse. Except when I'm overhearing stuff people think I can't hear. [Snicker]

Anyway. I woke up and saw the Caller ID flashing, and checked to see if there was a message. There was. It was a woman who left her number, her name, and said, "I'm trying to get in touch with Dr. Steven Porter."

Here's a novel idea: Why don't you call him?

Really. My recorded message quite clearly starts with, "Hi, this is Meryl." It does not start with, "Hi, this is Meryl, Dr. Steven Porter's answering service." It proves, once again, that most people hear what they want to hear, and this woman wanted to hear that I was her doctor's answering machine. Sorry.

I deleted the message.

My hosting service is having mail server problems. So I can't send out a few emails that I need to send, and I can't read your emails, and I can't delete my junk mail on the server.

Have you ever noticed that when you suddenly can't do something, you want to do it so badly that you're thinking of alternative methods to do it?

We are such children.

I know this page is getting loaded down with photos today. So I think that I'm going to put up one more, and then probably use thumbnails and alternate pages. But Larry G. wants to see pictures of my IEAPD feast, because, well, three of his four children were there. Okay, Larry, I promise—later today, the world will get to see how neat and ladylike your only daughter is at mealtimes. Just remember, you asked for it. |

New and improved

Yes, I'm trying an experiment: I've added Haloscan comments to the place. They'll stay until they get infested with nazis. I don't have a problem with hearing dissenting opinions. I have a real problem with sponsoring Jew-hatred on my own site.

With that in mind, I think I'm going to give a few trusted people (in several different time zones) edit/delete control to eliminate the mouth-breathers.

Click for supersizeAnd to show that I'm paying attention: Here you go, Aish. (Click for supersize.) I caught Worf countersurfing, which is the Rhodesian Ridgeback term for "stealing food." Here, he's just licking whatever spilled from preparing dinner, as he is never left alone in a room that has food in it. Not deliberately, anyway. If Heidi has to leave the kitchen while preparing dinner, she makes sure that Sorena or I stay there and keep an eye on the food. And yet, he constantly gets away with stealing food. Heidi was telling me a few days ago that they managed to get a jar of honey off the counter, open it, and eat half the contents.

Dogs. |



IEAFPD: Reader reports

International Eat an Animal for PETA is behind us, and I haven't finished putting up the reports of the meaty goodness had by all.

To celebrate IEAPD, we bought a big roasted chicken, set it on the table and as a family, we greedily tore the flesh straight from the carcass (no forks or any utensils) and gobbled it down.

Eldest daughter (6) reports that her favorite part was the dark meat. And she thinks it's fun to eat with her fingers.

Middle daughter (4) liked the roasted skin. She says: "I ate some dark meat too! Me too!"

We gave the baby a drumstick to gnaw on.

Husband and I also enjoyed the experience. There's nothing that says "family" quite so much as picking at a carcass.

-- Erica

Y'know, chicken is a lot of fun that way. Sarah has a different take on things:

As a vegetable-rights activist (hey, there's animal rights and mineral rights, why not vegetable rights?) I feel obligated to point you to a website that supports our cause:

I also have a little piece on vegetable rights on my website:

Both pages are quite funny. Go, you'll like.

From Cameron:

Regrettably, I have no pictures to post of my wife and I celebrating IEAPD. We did, however, go to the nearby Outback Steakhouse and had a hamburger with bacon strips on it and cheesefries for an appetizer (Made from exploited dairy animals).

From the Editor (I never know if I can quote his first name or not), the crowning irony in a news article he passed along to me:

The Central Committee of the Jewish Community in Germany intends to press charges, for insulting the memory of the dead, against PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), organizers of the exhibition "Holocaust on Your Plate," which is due to begin a European tour in Germany on 18 March.

The exhibit will consist of eight 60-square-foot panels showing photos of animals in slaughterhouses alongside photos of starving inmates of Nazi death camps. According to Aktion Sühnezeichen (Action Reconciliation), which also strongly opposes the exhibition, PETA is exploiting the victims of the Holocaust for propaganda purposes. Other animal defense organizations in Germany, such as Vier Pfoten, condemn the campaign for being insensible to the feelings of survivors and families of Holocaust victims.

While I think a law known as "insulting the memory of the dead" is a foolish law, I can't help but laugh over PETA being charged with it. Go, Germany! |

Today's moment of kitty zen

I just can't seem to get up the energy to write about hatred anymore today. So here's your moment of kitty zen: Gracie at the patio door, trying to decide if she wants to come outside.

I'm not fat. I'm just pictured that way.

I think she looks like a real Kliban kitty here. She's not that fat, but it's a pose that makes her look that way. On the other hand, she resembles the Kliban cookie jar I gave my mother some years ago, except it's black and white. And yes, Rahel, she is as soft as she looks. Gracie's fur feels like silk.

By the way, folks, I'm testing something new. See if you can figure out what it is. |

Since I'm going to hell anyway...

This is a hilarious Flash link. It's The Exorcist in 30 seconds (and re-enacted by bunnies).

Also, via my pal Dolly, check out this dancing dog. Now that's training.

And in the process of cleaning out my emailboxes, I found this joke:

A reporter goes to Israel to cover the fighting. She is looking for something emotional and positive and of human interest. Something like that guy in Sarajevo who risked his life to play the cello every day in the town square.

In Jerusalem, she heard about an old Jew who had been going to the Western Wall to pray, twice a day, everyday, for a long, long time. So she went to check it out. She goes to the Western Wall and there he is! She watches him pray and after about 45 minutes, when he turns to leave, she approaches him for an interview.

"I'm Rebecca Smith, CNN News. Sir, how long have you been coming to the Western Wall and praying?"

"For about 50 years."

"50 years! That's amazing! What do you pray for?"

"I pray for peace between the Jews and the Arabs. I pray for all the hatred to stop and I pray for our children to grow-up in safety and friendship.

"How do you feel after doing this for 50 years?"

"Like I'm talking to a fuckin' wall."

More Passion links

Lynn B. has a few more words to say on the obvious Jew-hatred of some of the defenders of the film.

This time, Zmirak is accusing Jews, and specifically the Anti-Defamation League, of "attempted prior censorship" and, amazingly, "leading a jihad against the cross." All in bad faith, he asserts, because the "key events" in the movie are "confirmed by the Jewish Talmud." This will be big news to most Talmudic scholars, but trust him. He knows better. He even makes up a bit of pseudo-religio-historic fiction of his own to support his, er, point.

And Cathy Young sent me her before and after columns on the film. Excerpts from before:

MEL GIBSON had every right to make his film, "The Passion of the Christ." People who like the movie have every right to defend it. People also have every right to criticize it -- and, of course, Gibson's fans are free to criticize the critics. It's all part of free speech. But right now, the criticism directed at the movie is being distorted and demonized, and this rhetoric is fomenting far more division than the movie itself possibly could. So the subject of "The Passion" has to be addressed again, in order to set the record straight.


Having seen the film, I think it has an anti-Jewish taint -- but I can understand completely why some people of good will see no anti-Semitism in it. "The Passion" does not trade in crude ethnic stereotypes of hook-nosed Jews with yellow teeth. What it does is relentlessly stress the responsibility of the Jewish priests and the Jerusalem mob for the death of Jesus.

The Catholic Church has recommended, after the 1965 reforms of Vatican II (which Gibson's ultra-traditionalist brand of Catholicism rejects), that the material of the gospels be handled with care to avoid potential anti-Semitic pitfalls. Gibson goes beyond the gospels -- notably at the end, when the earthquake that follows Jesus' death shatters the Jewish temple in Jerusalem. The gospels say that a curtain in the temple was torn in half. In Gibson's version, the walls tremble and one of them splits, columns fall, fires erupt, and the evil priests wander dazed amidst the rubble; Caiaphas burns his hand and looks terrified. No such destruction befalls the palace of Pontius Pilate.

Gee, I thought Mel said that everything he filmed was in the Gospels. Everything. Yes, everything. Uh-huh. Everything. It's all the truth, he said, in spite of basing the film's script on the visions of an undiagnosed nutcase nun who claimed she saw events from 18 centuries in the past.

In any case. I hope we're done with the Passion pieces, because I'm mighty tired of them. But I'm sure there will be more. The Arab and Muslim states will use this movie to buttress their anti-Semitic propaganda. We're not quite done here.



The Woodpecker Wars: A renewal?

Last year, around this time, the opening salvo in the Woodpecker War was fired. (I'll have links to the whole saga up soon; I'm working on updating my "best of" pages.) A few days ago, I was thinking that I'd probably have to get Maintenance Guy back up on the roof to put another water-filled shampoo bottle on my chimney hood, as I figured the old bottle blew off in Hurricane Isabel. I checked. Amazingly, the shampoo bottle remains.

However, I've been hearing woodpeckers singing for the past few weeks. The sound brings a momentary pause to whatever I'm doing, as I listen in fear for the dreaded hammering of the beak on metal. But so far, the dreaded Shampoo Bottle of Death is still keeping Woody Effing Woodpecker away.


Look what I saw this morning. First, there was Woody himself. I can't really tell from the bird book, but I think he's a flicker, although the bird book also makes flickers look a lot yellower, and Woody isn't yellow.

Woody Effing Woodpecker, looking for girls

There was an even more fearful moment: Woody and a female, sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. Yes, that's right. I caught the courtship ritual of the most annoying bird in Richmond.

Woody trying to impress the Mrs.

On the other hand, Woody was literally turning himself in circles to impress his potential wife, so I did get to laugh at him, which, uh, made no difference whatsoever.

The pictures aren't very clear. Rainy day, had to shoot through the glass patio door, and they were pretty high up in the tree. But the intent is clear: Someday soon, there is going to be a nestful of little Woody Effing Woodpeckers in my neighborhood. I hope to God they're single egg-layers.

Blogathon 2004

Cat's not running the Blogathon this year. She says she's taking a year off and that 2005 will be back, bigger and better than ever.

Lair, Michele and I have every intention of staging our own blogathon anyway, for Magen David Adom again. We're going to try to raise the full $60,000 that it will cost to donate an ambulance to Magen David Adom. We raised about $15,000 last year.

We're also accepting applications now for anyone who wants to stay up for 24 hours straight, posting every thirty minutes, which means you have to write 49 posts in 24 hours. This year, however, since we get to choose the date, it's going to be a Sunday, out of respect for religious Jews who are Shabbat observant.

If you want to help raise enough money to dedicate the Ilan Ramon Blogathon MDA ambulance, send an email and let us know. We're currently figuring out a date and other logistics. More news as things start coming together.

Canadian anti-Semitism watch

March 12: Anti-Semitic hate crimes on rise, says B'nai Brith

The Jewish community and society at large are becoming desensitized to a rise in anti-Semitic acts such as death threats, harassment and assault, a Jewish human rights organization says in a report released yesterday.

"People in the community view it as almost inevitable," said Ruth Klein, national director of advocacy for B'nai Brith Canada.

What was once seen as offensive and unacceptable is now being viewed as less serious and even routine, said Rochelle Wilner, national president of B'nai Brith Canada.

Some 584 acts were reported to the League for Human Rights of B'nai Brith Canada last year. In its 2003 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents, the organization recorded a 27.2 per cent increase in anti-Semitic acts countrywide from 2002. Most involved harassment, with vandalism the next most common.

Almost half those incidents took place in the first four months of 2003, during the U.S. war on Iraq, the audit said.

As to what society will tolerate, the bar is being raised, Wilner said.

Synagogues hire security, parents keep their children home after dark and the elderly avoid walking alone, Klein explained. People have reported swastikas painted on their doors, confrontations in the streets, golf balls with anti-Semitic slogans thrown through car windows and the desecration of tombstones. Last year, three 10-year-old girls were swarmed by young males on a subway car in Toronto and called "dirty Jews," Klein said.

The audit revealed that 315 of the incidents occurred in Toronto.

March 16: Vandals hit with slurs and swastikas

A rash of anti-Semitic vandalism in York Region has left police and Jewish groups scrambling for answers.

"I don't know why they do it. They get nothing from it because they don't scare us," said Moshe Levy, whose car was vandalized.

There were 13 acts of vandalism throughout the area, which took place between the hours of 11 p.m. Sunday to 7 a.m. yesterday, police said.

"I have never seen so many (incidents) over such a short time period during my time with the hate crimes unit," said Sergeant Heidi Schellhorn, a diversity and cultural resources unit officer for York Region police.

An upset neighbour told Levy that both their cars had been vandalized. A cross and the letters X and either S or P had been spray-painted in black on the passenger side of Levy's silver car. Levy said he didn't know what the letters meant.

So many possible reasons from which to choose: Gibson's Passion, the surrender of Spain, or just plain, simple Jew-hatred.

As long as good people continue to ignore the haters in their midst, things like this will continue.



IEAPD Reports, continued

Lair Simon, complete with pictures

Andy's looked both classy and delicious.

Aaron's, which is kosher, too.

Graumagus has a really creepy post about Night of the Living Lobsters (yes! they returned to life!) as well as a description of his day.

Zachary eats lots of fishies.

Kevin Aylward's beef salad, and, as he wrote, a picture of the bun in the oven. (17 days to go until Boy Number Three.)

Still more from Aaron. Good Lord, he's a workaholic. And a meataholic.

Dizzy Girl sent two pictures

More to come as folks send me more links.

It's official: Reuters is really Indymedia

You know, I keep thinking there's no way Reuters can sink any lower, and then I come across stories like this. All of the sneer quotes are theirs.

PORTLAND, Ore. (Reuters) - A prominent environmental activist on the FBI's most wanted list for allegedly firebombing industrial sites in Oregon has been arrested, the FBI said on Monday.

Michael James Scarpitti, also known as "Tre Arrow," faces four felony counts linked to a fire that damaged logging trucks in Eagle Creek, Oregon, in June 2001. He is also blamed for another fire that damaged concrete mixing trucks in Portland in April 2001.

[...] Scarpitti, 30, is "affiliated" with Earth Liberation Front, deemed a "domestic terrorism group" by the FBI, and has taken part in several high profile protests, including camping in tall trees to halt logging.

"Reuters" is a "news agency" that "publishes" "objective" "news" articles. On the other hand, the AP has this to say (not a sneer quote to be found):

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - A fugitive radical environmentalist has been arrested on charges of setting fire to logging and cement trucks in 2001, the FBI announced Monday.

Michael Scarpitti was arrested Saturday while trying to shoplift some bolt cutters in Vancouver, British Columbia, said Robert Jordan, the FBI's special agent in charge in Portland. Canadian police realized he was a fugitive when his fingerprints were run through a database, Jordan said.

Scarpitti has been on the FBI's most-wanted list since disappearing two years ago and has been connected to the Earth Liberation Front, a shadowy group that has claimed responsibility for dozens of crimes over the past several years.

The FBI lists the ELF as its No. 1 domestic terrorism priority.

I cannot believe that Ha'aretz actually uses the Reuters "news service." In fact, I find it difficult to believe that anyone would pay money for the biased crap that Reuters dishes out.

Syria massacres Kurds; world yawns

Omri Ceren is blogging the story, but apparently, not too many mainstream media outlets have even noticed. And if you're not reading Dejafoo regularly, you're missing an excellent blog.

For instance:

Hypocritical Liars Watch>
Someone needs to start keeping a count right now of how many smug, sneering pieces the mainstream liberal media produces crowing about how Bush has lost a major ally in Iraq. Because every time they get caught writing one, they should be forced to literally eat every article, opinion, and editorial that their papers produced referring to our Iraq strategy as "unilateral" (as in physically consume - I’m not joking about this). This policy applies doubly for anyone from the New York Times, because they were disproportionately self-satisfied when they were writing the original pieces too.

And this:

This kind of rhetoric has become so common that it gets buried until the second or third to last paragraph in news stories. Step back out of the day to day drip drip drip of bombings and retaliations, and contemplate for a second that there are entire populations that believe this disgusting filth and that the international press doesn't think that it's at all scandalous:

Palestinian militants had vowed revenge after Israeli troops killed 14 people in a Gaza raid on March 7. "The killing of Jews has become a form of worship that gets us close to God," al-Aqsa bomber Nabil Mas'oud in a pre-recorded videotape.

Every Western news story that doesn't include this quote - a quote directly out of the claim of responsibility that jumps out at anyone who reads it - is complicit in helping to cover up the true scope and horror of Islamist fanaticism.

There's much, much more.

Terrorism, terrorism, and more terrorism

The IDF arrested a 12-year-old boy trying to bring a bomb through a checkpoint out of Nablus. You remember those checkpoints: They're the ones that human rights organizations and überlefties (which is now my term of choice for the lunatic left) say are "humiliating" to the palestinian people. Yes, indeed. Extremely humiliating. Why, it's downright embarrassing to be caught with

a pretty serious bomb, between seven and 10 kilograms (about 15-22 pounds),” the officer, identified as Lt. Col. Guy, told Israeli Army Radio. “It was ready for detonation, apparently with a mobile phone.”

It's not bad enough that the pals are using minors as bomb transports. It gets worse:

According to some reports, the people who gave the bag to Abdallah tried unsuccessfully to detonate the bag while he was trying to pass the security check, when soldiers were standing close to him.

They were going to kill the child. Perhaps the pals don't love their children, too, to use an old Sting song lyric.

The boy, when questioned by security forces, said that he was promised a large sum of money in return to passing the bag.

He added that he was meant to pass the bag to a girl that was standing on the other side of the checkpoint. Security forces arrested several female Palestinians who might be involved in the incidents.

Let's take a longer look at the first article quoted:

Palestinians said the boy, from the poverty-ridden Balata refugee camp on the southern edge of the city, worked as a porter at the nearby Huwwara checkpoint, helping to carry the belongings of Palestinians forbidden to drive through.

"poverty-ridden." "forbidden to drive through." This must be Reuters. No, it's actually something called the Press Association. Reuters has not covered this story, apparently deeming it more important to post anti-Israel headlines like "Sharon Rules Out Peace Talks with Palestinians," as opposed to something like, "Sharon to pals: Stop terror, or no peace talks," which is what he actually said. By the way, the last several articles I've read on Reuters that deal with Israel have ellipsed quotes. I'm betting they're pulling a Dowdism, but can't find the originals yet.

The security officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said he was hired to carry baggage by militants loosely linked to Yasser Arafat’s Fatah movement and did not know the contents of the backpack they gave him.

The officials said that the militants planned to explode the device as the boy passed through the checkpoint, but failed due to a technical fault. The explosion would have killed the boy and nearby soldiers.

Nice. Hire a boy, kill him, then, no doubt, claim he was the youngest "martyr" ever in the fight against Israel. Bastards.

Guy said the boy was hired by an adult to carry the bag. He said it was common for terror groups to use innocent-looking children or women as couriers for arms and explosives.

“In the past we caught a 39-year-old mother of seven ... with an explosive belt under her clothes,” he said, adding that the woman was on her way into Israel from the West Bank when she was caught.

But they didn't try to blow them up. The tactics have shifted. Everyone, it seems, is expendable—except, of course, for the terrorists' own children. There's one more important part of the article, though:

The security sources said the boy was released after questioning.

Which convinces me that he was an ignorant pack mule used by the terrorists. Disgusting. Shame on the pals, and shame on all their terror-supporters in the EU and elsewhere.

IEAPD links

Whomping Willow is whomping on Chomsky with a poster or three.

I wish I was at his house this weekend. Mmmm.

Now that's a meat poster. With lots of cheese, too.

Michele and Andy have a picture up that shows you why we simply have to keep mocking PETA for all we are worth. Then again, Andy has managed to point out that they simply mock themselves—without even having to say it.

This is the yummiest poster yet. Warning: Do not view on an empty stomach.

I have pictures from my lunch today. I'll post them later. There are some serious things going on that I need to get to.

People Eating Tasty Animals: International Eat an Animal for PETA Day

Apparently, there's a website, but I can't find the email so I can't send you there. Perhaps my emailer will send me another (sorry!). In the meantime, I'm off to Sarah's to join up with Sarah and three of her children (eldest is going to be mad when he finds out where we ate lunch, but he's in school) to eat some meat for lunch.

I was reading some of the threads on which IEAPD is mentioned. Many of the affronted vegans point out that since PETA hasn't changed its tactics, my day isn't accomplishing anything. They apparently have no reading comprehension skills, as here is a direct quote from my original post:

I've already received a letter from a child of Holocaust survivors who is, of course, extraordinarily offended. But here's the thing: PETA is known for this kind of outrageous publicity stunt—and that's what it is, an outrageous publicity stunt—and while I am also offended and outraged, there is absolutely nothing we can do that will make PETA change their ad campaign. I'm sure they knew exactly what they were doing, have a plan in mind, and, if they withdraw the campaign, will do it according to their deadlines and their decisions.

On the other hand, the IEAPD is accomplishing something. It is pissing people off. That was its half its purpose. The other half was to make people feel a little less angry and upset, and laugh a little bit more—at PETA—after being offended by that awful "Holocaust on your plate" campaign, which compared the slaughter of chickens to the slaughter of six million Jews. (PETA also lied by claiming their campaign was approved by Holocaust survivors and made it seem that Isaac Bashevis Singer (who has been dead for years) was on board with it.)

So my juvenile scorn impulse kicked in, and out came the IEAPD.

Lynn put up her early IEAPD menu, and wow, the bar is set rather high. Don't think I'll come anywhere close to that many kinds of animals. There will be cute children and food pictures here, though.

I leave you with this letter from Alex Bensky, internet raconteur:

You may recall my personal IEAPETA motto: "March 15--If It Didn't Have A Mother, Don't Eat It."




I don't think that's a word, but I like it.

Coming soon (hopefully tomorrow): Daniel Pipes has been invited to speak at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. However, due to an uber-lefty reactions to people like Pipes, the group has to come up with five grand to hire extra security. So I'm going to ask for your help. I'm getting an address where you can send checks to the organization that's sponsoring Dr. Pipes. I'll have it up tomorrow. If we raise the money (and not just from you readers), I promise a first-hand report as if I were writing it for a newspaper. I'll bring my tape recorder. Assuming, of course, that I don't get into a vehement, er, discussion, with some uber-lefty in a kaffiyeh and get arrested. I've already made my rabbi promise to bring along bail money for me. Yeah, I'm kidding. Mostly.

Over at Mac Thomason's, a report on the E! Online poll to save an endangered show: Angel took 85% of the vote. There is a worldwide effort to keep the show alive. This just may come off. Keep those cards and letters coming.

Don't forget: Tomorrow is the second annual Eat an Animal For PETA Day. Chow down on all those meat-filled goodies, and take pictures and write me letters about your day.

Aaron has a compendium (and several posters) of the upcoming day for us.

Yes, I know there was another attack in Gaza. Ze'ev Schiff says to expect more, since Sharon announced the unilateral withdrawal. Perhaps he should tell the terrorists to go eff themselves, and that Israel has decided to stay put, after all. Think it would help?

Nah, me neither.

It's only one battle: The war continues

Spanish voters appear to have chosen a government that will remove them as allies in the war on terror (which I find, frankly, difficult to believe—Spanish intelligence officials will keep going after terrorists regardless of who is the Prime Minister). I've just finished a round of the blogosphere, where disappointment and shock seem to be the dominant emotions.

It certainly appears as if Al Qaeda has influenced the Spanish election. But it's only one battle. Let me remind you of something the President said on September 21, 2001:

We have seen their kind before. They're the heirs of all the murderous ideologies of the 20th century. By sacrificing human life to serve their radical visions, by abandoning every value except the will to power, they follow in the path of fascism, Nazism and totalitarianism. And they will follow that path all the way to where it ends in history's unmarked grave of discarded lies. Americans are asking, "How will we fight and win this war?"

We will direct every resource at our command -- every means of diplomacy, every tool of intelligence, every instrument of law enforcement, every financial influence, and every necessary weapon of war -- to the destruction and to the defeat of the global terror network.

Now, this war will not be like the war against Iraq a decade ago, with a decisive liberation of territory and a swift conclusion. It will not look like the air war above Kosovo two years ago, where no ground troops were used and not a single American was lost in combat.

Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes. Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign unlike any other we have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes visible on TV and covert operations secret even in success.

We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against another, drive them from place to place until there is no refuge or no rest.

And we will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation in every region now has a decision to make: Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists.

We lost a lot of battles in WWII. But we won the war. And we helped Europe rebuild.

We're winning the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Terrorist-sponsoring nations are beginning to give up their murderous habits (Libya, anyone?). As W. pointed out more than once, we're in it for the long haul. This war is going to take time. We're not going to win all the battles. And some battles—like the election in Spain—aren't going to be apparent until they are upon us.

Yes, I'm worried. Yes, I think that Al Qaeda will consider this a victory to be imitated. But I still have confidence in our own intelligence services, and in our military. Naivete? Perhaps. I prefer to call it optimism.


Last week's blogs are archived. Looking for the Buffy Blogburst Index? Here's Israel vs. the world. Here's the Blogathon. The Superhero Dating Ratings are here. If you're looking for something funny, try the Hulk's solution to the Middle East conflict, or Yasser Arafat Secret Phone Transcripts. Iseema bin Laden's diary is also a good bet if you've never been here before.