This blog is a no-Israel-bashing zone (click for explanation)
Vote for me in the Wizbang Weblog Awards. Because my ego is that big.
Why I want to win the Wizbang Weblog Award
(Which should be renamed the Wizbang Weblog aWards, if you ask me.)
Here's the thing. Most awards are simply personality contests, or statements made by the organizers, or just plain bogus. Now that that's out of the way, anyone with an ego wants to win an award. Hell, I'd love to own a Nobel prize in literature someday, but, well, it's a bit out of my reach at the moment.
On the other hand, Kevin's awards are not.
So. Do I think I should win because I'm the best blog in my Ecoysystem category? Nope. Do I think I'm a better blogger than Michael Totten and that Patterico guy? Well, actually, yeah, but that's because I'm a writer, and my ego has always been about the size of Montana. But truthfully, should I win the award because I think I'm the better blogger? Nope. That's not why I want it.
You know why I want to win? So I can win. That's it. It's as simple as that. So I can say I won. So I can do my Sally Field imitation: "You like me! You really like me!" So I can put "Winner of the Wizbang Weblog aWard!" on my blog. Oh, wait. I didn't do that last year, and Megan McArdle and I tied for best female-authored blog. But it was fun watching the votes go back and forth between Megan and me.
Anyway, you've put me into third place in the voting. Now it's time to get past that Patterico guy, partly because I have no idea how to pronounce his name (PATterico? PatTERico? PatteRIco? Who the hell can tell?), and, well, mostly because he's in second place, and I threw down the gauntlet to him in his comments section. We'll just have to see if he's a gentleman, or if I get to fight dirty.
I love to fight dirty. Dude, did you know that I'm the Master of Juvenile Scorn? We can have a lot of fun here.
(I sure hope this guy has a sense of humor, or I'm in biiiiig trouble.)
Anyway. Vote for me. Once every 24 hours between now and December 12th, please. Because my ego is just that big.
(P.S.: Put your mouse over the links in this post.)
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Hamas says they're willing to settle for a palestinian state next to Israel. This, if true, is a sea change in the terrorist organization's history, considering that Hamas was created to destroy the state of Israel and replace it with an Islamic state.
The thing is, I don't buy it in the least.
No, they don't. Your interpretation of them indicate that. As far as I can see, the only thing coming out of Yousef's mouth are lies. However, it is very important to note that the last two years, when Israel targeted the leadership and organization of Hamas, are definitely affecting the group's ability to murder Jews. If you will recall, the newest leader of Hamas was not named after Rantissi was killed, and has not surfaced at all in the months since his predecessor was blown to pieces. Add to that Hamas being put on various nations' terrorist lists, and the inability to be financed publicly, and you have a group that is stumbling around the ring, trying to stay on its feet. So what do you do in a case like this?
The statements are utterly loaded with booby traps, and you don't even have to read between the lines. Yousef called the new position a "stage." In other words, they're going to use this time to regroup and re-arm.
This is the tack that the analysts will take. This is what the EU will say, too: See, they're trying. Give them a chance. Let's see what happens. The Europeans will believe that Hamas will ultimately be brought around to want peace with Israel and settle for a palestinian state. But they will not. This is a deceptive truce. All you have to do is look at the Hamas Charter:
Does anyone out there who read the above truly believe that Hamas is doing anything other then attempting to rebuild its shattered ranks?
Right now, Mahmoud Abbas is feeling his way around the power structure. He's tallying up his allies, bribing his supporters, and getting ready to be the next Arafat. Let's not forget he was Arafat's hand-picked prime minister. Or that, as the article Omri linked to points out, he was the financier of the Munich Massacre of the Israeli Olympic athletes. It's possible he's putting pressure on Hamas. It's also just as likely he's telling them that if they lie low for a while, in a year or three, they can come back stronger than ever, and this time, maybe even win. As far as I'm concerned, the next leader of the palestinians needs to prove to me that he's not going to carry on in Arafat's footsteps. Abbas has already backtracked on his promise to stop palestinian anti-Israel incitement.
As for the hudna: Hamas is already hurting; the so-called truce is partly a result of extraordinary work by Israeli security services. Palestinians have not stopped trying to murder Israelis. They just keep getting stopped before they can do so. And while it will help Israel not to have to be on such high alert, and let's face it, it'd be lovely if Israelis could actually get on a bus with an Arab man without wondering if they're going to get blown upas far as I'm concerned, we're all from Missouri on this one. Show us you mean well, and we'll believe it. Maybe.
But first, I want to see incitement stop. And murders. And attempted murders. And attacks on civilians. And attempted attacks on civilians. Then, and only then, will I believe that Hamas might be willing to change. Of course, then all I'd have to do is read their charter again.
I'm not buying it.
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I had no idea I was nominated for a Wizbang Blogger Award. Apparently, you can vote once a day.
In spite of the fact that Lair's comment in the post below, where he says, and I quote: "Less talk, more Tig," which is, I think, the catblogger equivalent of yelling "Show us your tits!" to a woman, I am posting a cat picture. Or a cats picture, to be more precise.
Not because he asked me to show you my cats. But because I felt like showing them to you.
Why, yes, I am tired, and it has been a long day. Why do you ask? permalink | |
Thing 1: Day by Day is back. Yesterday evening, I was chatting on the phone with Lynn B., and we were both online, as is, uh, well, often the case, what with her being a blogger, me being a blogger, and our conversation often focusing on blogs and bloggers. Of course, we talk about a lot of other things, too, what with her being Jewish, my being Jewish, and our conversation focusing on things Jewish (she is the best human reference book I know when it comes to questions on religion or Jewish history). Oh, and there's the personal stuff, which is, well, personal, and damned if I'm going to tell you what we talk about. It's personal.
So yesterday, she said, "Hey! Chris Muir is back!", which is something I would have known had I not just driven home from New Jersey and been going through Round Two of my cold and not reading my email because I was too tired. Otherwise I'd have known that Chris emailed me about it, but anyway, to continue: We both clicked on the link and read yesterday's strip at the same time, and we both burst out in laughter at the same time.
Now this is comedy.
Thing 2: On Tuesday afternoon, I got home from running errands about three o'clock. There was a hawk next to my apartment building. I saw it as I pulled up. It was just standing on the ground between my building and the next one. Then it was looking at me, and I was frantically reaching for my digital camera and rolling down the window to take pictures. Unfortunately, it was too far away, and they're rather fuzzy. It flew away when I turned off the motor and tried to get out of the car to get closer. Needless to say, when I got inside, I would not let Tig out. The hawk wasn't big enough to carry him off, but it was big enough to do him some damage if Tig decided that he'd like to go after the giant bird. All the birds in the neighborhood were freaking out and talking to one another.
It's probably my fault. I've always had this desire to see a raptor take down an animal in front of me. I can't explain it. I hate seeing creatures die, and frankly don't even like killing bugs, but I've always wanted to see a hawk catch a bird on the wing, or maybe a critter in the field. I've seen it on nature films, but that just doesn't do it for me.
I wonder if I should talk to a therapist about this.
Thing 3: I am really, really, really, really tired of having a cold. I've gone through several boxes of tissues and could get really gross about the quantities of bodily fluids expelled in the last week, but won't. You know that new commercial for the Mucilage or whatever they're calling the anti-mucus medication, the one with the cartoon mucus monster? Well, that guy would feel right at home in my sinuses. I am making chicken soup for dinner today. I finished the last of mine last week. I'm also wondering if fresh dill is basically the same thing as using the greens from carrots in a soup. I put those in last time, and really liked the flavor they added. Dill is just little wild carrots, isn't it?
Thing 4: Today is my only day off between now and next Thursday. If I start to get grumpy, you'll know why. On the other hand, I only have four more weeks at The Job From Hell, which is officially being renamed The Job From Heck. My boss has grown accustomed enough to me that he doesn't grumble nearly as much, and I've grown accustomed enough to him that I ignore him when he's being an asshole. Which is, of course, every day I work with him, but there you have it.
There is no truth to the rumor that being able to buy Mallomars at near cost is the reason I can stand my job now. And yes, I did buy another box yesterday, even though I have a box at home. I wanted them for dessert with my lunch. Hey, I want them for dessert with breakfast and dinner, too. But I'm controlling my urges. I don't have them with breakfast. Okay, sometimes I have them for breakfast, but, well, there you have it.
Thing 5: You know, if someone would like to go out and buy me the dill or carrot greens instead of my having to go out and get them later, that'd be fine by me. I do not want to go out today. Well, at least the store's only ten minutes away.
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O, Canada! Hold onto your hats, folks, Canada has just scolded the UN for its anti-Israel stance. Yes, I wrote "Canada." Yes! Canada! Canada! Canada!
Well, all right. In honor of this, I'm going to send you all over to Damian's and Segacs' places. They're Canadian, and have been pro-Israel as long as I've known them. Of course, Canada is going to play the moral equivalence game, but still, the rest of their moves are a step in the right direction.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Well, at least they're taking some forward steps.
Finally, the real reformer: President Bush is going to focus on palestinian reform, not on phony peace plans. (Hat tip: Doug L.)
Yeah, we remember those negotiations. They're called the Oslo War now. Good to know that W. isn't going to keep trying the failed policies of the past.
The UN's Duh! moment: A panel appointed to reform the UN is going to tell them today that they need to condemn all terrorism, no exceptions for Jew-killers, er, I mean, "resistance" movements. The question is, will the UN rise to the occasion? Let's think. Hm. Oil-for-food, refusal to condemn anti-Semitism, hundreds of anti-Israel resolutions, and that giant anti-US voting bloc: My money's on the UN remaining unchanged.
And it will still be ignored. Okay, not ignored. Voted down. Of course, I could be wrong. I'd love to be wrong about this one. We'll have to wait and see. permalink | |
Funny how you never hear that one anymore.
Anyway. I still have my cold, and was out most of the day running errands, then when I got home, I had six steaks and nine pounds of chicken cutlets to turn into individual servings, which means cutting, trimming, wrapping, putting in Ziploc bags, and freezing. But I now have a freezer full of ready-to-defrost meals, plus a couple of challahs, real bagels, not the imitation things they have down here, some kosher Chinese food, and even one black and white cookie left. The kosher bakery in West Orange makes the best black and white cookies, ever. They're like long, flat cupcakes more than cookies. Yum. And damn, there's a load of towels in the washer that need to make it into the dryer. I keep forgetting.
In the bad news department: Worf doesn't seem to have gotten any better, and he's losing weight. The lump on the side of his jaw is still about the same size. Not good. Not good at all. We're waiting on the biopsy, but we're thinking the worst.
Tomorrow I work at the Job From Hell, but I'll be posting when I get home. In the meantime, Omri is doing a bang-up job keeping up with the Israel beat. Just start at the top, scroll down, and please try not to break your computer or kick small animals while reading what Omri is commenting on. Judith has her usual zillion links. And post in the comments links to blogs you recommend for the Israel beat. Remember, you can create links by following these simple steps:
<a href="http://www.mylink.com">REPLACE THIS TEXT WITH WHAT YOU WANT THE LINK TO SAY</a>
If you cut and paste that exactly, change "mylink.com" to your link, and change the text in caps to what you'd like the link to read (e.g., "This is my favorite link!"), you'll have become an HTML whiz. At least as far as links are concerned.
Failing that, paste the whole thing into the comments box. I'll live. permalink | |
Yes, I still have the cold: You'll have to wait tomorrow for the news, but I think you may get a double dose if I'm up for it. Of the news, not the cold. Geez.
Three's the charm: The back of my Jeep was pretty full. Besides my usual luggage and the large Coleman cooler that I inherited from Dad (it has a bottle opener in the side, it's that old), I had three laptops in the back. Yes, three. The old Sony VAIO, the new HP Pavilion (which totally rocks, by the way), and my old Compaq laptop that Chubb made me buy when I took their programming course. Mom was using it to play Solitaire and go online with AOL. Yes, really. Anyway. I'm planning on reformatting the HD, loading Windows 2000 on it (I doubt it can take XP), putting Office 2000 on it (a legal copy; I actually own it), and giving it to Sorena for Christmas. We were thinking of buying Windows 2000 on Ebay, but if anyone out there would like to sell me a legal copy they may have but don't use any more, (and I really mean it, legal only), send me email.
It's not from her side of the family: My mother is utterly hopeless when it comes to computers. First, she somehow managed to install a Windows password on her brand-new computer even though my brother set it up for her without one. And she had no idea how she had set it, or what she had set it to. When I got there last week, the first thing I did was sit down with my new XP book and figure out how to remove the password. The first thing Mom did after that was play Solitaire. We all have our priorities.
I just got home a few hours ago. She called me up tonight to tell me that I took her HP book. That's because she put all the HP material in a box, along with the McAfee disk, and made me take it with me. I tried to give her some of the things in the box. She insisted they were all mine. So now she's calling me up to complain that I took her user manual.
I cannot possibly have this woman's genes. I am a programmer. I have been computer-literate since the 1970s, and I friggin' taught myself nearly everything I know. I am about to get a job training people on computers. I cannot possibly have her genes.
But I do have her HP User's Guide.
I think I'm going to go offline and forget about this now. My blood pressure. Oy.
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Actually, there was a lotta schmooze. Today's blogger get-together at Katz's was quite nice. The big surprise of the day for me was seeing my old friend Drew from my typesetting days. I wasn't expecting him at all. So let's see, there were Judith Weiss and Mary and Joel G. and Joseph H. and Judith's non-blogging friends Mary and Dan, if I got their names right.
Traffic sucked coming in from NJ, and I was a half hour late, but I got there. Headed for home around four-thirtyish, then chatted with Judith some more in Port Authority while waiting for my bus. Very nice. I think I'd like to do it again.
(If I missed anyone, or got a name wrong, forgive me. I'm tired, it's late, and I still have the remnants of that damned cold.)
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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.