The Sports Guy rules on

8:06 – Thanks to ESPN’s fun little draft fact thingie, we just learned that Felton “writes poetry in his spare time.” I think I would pay $7,500 to hear him recite Tyrone Green’s “Kill My Landlord” to Stu Scott right now and pretend that he wrote it.

I see da watchdog
Do he bite?

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Will wonders never cease

From Drudge:

The USA Patriot Act, in the name of fighting terrorism, allows the government to find out which books and Internet sites a person has seen. It lets investigators secretly search homes and monitor phone calls and e-mail.

Now, officials in the wealthy New York City suburb of Summit are using the law to justify forcing homeless people to leave a train station _ an action that sparked a $5 million federal lawsuit by a homeless man.

Richard Kreimer, who filed the lawsuit in March after being kicked out of the train station, said the Patriot Act defense makes no sense. “Unless they’ve been smoking those funny cigarettes, I can’t see how my civil lawsuit has anything to do with the Patriot Act,” said Kreimer, 55, who is acting as his own attorney.

But Summit officials argue they are protected by a provision regarding “attacks and other violence against mass transportation systems.” Town attorney Harry Yospin, who did not return calls seeking comment Tuesday and Wednesday, has used the law as one of more than a dozen defenses in the case.

Of course, “conservative” defenders of every act of the Bush administration will argue that since no library has yet been forced to give up a list of books being checked out by its patrons, there are no Patriot Act abuses.

I know I’m looking forward to Patriot II, how about you?

I’m prepared

Steve Sviggum, the Republican leader in the state senate, has informed Minnesotans that they must be mentally prepared for a government shutdown. Dear oh dear, whatever shall we do? I’ve asked Big Chilly and the White Buffalo to behave in a surly and intentionally uninformative manner whenever I call them, and on my part, I’ll be asking pointless and prying questions of all my family members in trying to fill in for those government employees sitting at home.

Any other ideas?

Bring the noise

Could a hotel be built on the land owned by Supreme Court Justice David H. Souter? A new ruling by the Supreme Court which was supported by Justice Souter himself itself might allow it. A private developer is seeking to use this very law to build a hotel on Souter’s land.

Justice Souter’s vote in the “Kelo vs. City of New London” decision allows city governments to take land from one private owner and give it to another if the government will generate greater tax revenue or other economic benefits when the land is developed by the new owner.

On Monday June 27, Logan Darrow Clements, faxed a request to Chip Meany the code enforcement officer of the Towne of Weare, New Hampshire seeking to start the application process to build a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road. This is the present location of Mr. Souter’s home.

Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC, points out that the City of Weare will certainly gain greater tax revenue and economic benefits with a hotel on 34 Cilley Hill Road than allowing Mr. Souter to own the land.

The proposed development, called “The Lost Liberty Hotel” will feature the “Just Desserts Café” and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon’s Bible each guest will receive a free copy of Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged.”

Let’s see some eminent domain in action, ladies and gentlemen. Anyone know where Susan B. Ginsberg lives?

More fiction in the legacy media

From WND:

A longtime columnist of the Sacramento Bee who resigned amid controversy last month may have invented the existence of 43 people she wrote about over several years, an internal investigation found.

The paper announced yesterday it had completed a probe into Diana Griego Erwin’s writing, stating: “We have been unable to verify the existence of 43 people she named in her columns. This doesn’t prove these people don’t exist, but despite extensive research we have been unable to find them.”

I blame it on those untrustworthy blogs…. I’m just wondering, how many of these “isolated incidents” have to occur before we can conclude that there’s a pattern of journalistic fiction?

Perhaps we should ask the media’s official “the man on the street”, Greg Packer, what he makes of all this.

Call me Ron

From CNN/SI:

Considering how zealously the NFL promotes and protects its product, the league can’t be too happy with Midway’s new football videogame Blitz: The League. The NFL declined to grant Midway an official license, which left the gamemaker free to take its shots at the league. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the new version of the game includes an Atlanta-based team called the Redhawks that looks suspiciously like the Falcons. The team’s quarterback? A chap named Mexico.

Heh heh heh….

Psychological armor

An interesting email received this morning. I can’t verify any of this, but perhaps some of you can.

Here’s one reason that so many American soldiers and marines have died in Iraq…

Back in 1981, I was the head of a bulletproof car company in Monterey, California. We’d construct a box made of Lexgard inside a limo or regular car. It was pretty effective but difficult to install. Lexgard is General Electric’s transparent polycarbonate armor, very effective at stopping handgun bullets. If you put a hard surface in front of it, such as glass or sheet metal, it will stop rifle bullets. After the bullet hits the hard surface it is upset slightly on its axis and is then trapped in the dense but crystal-clear polycarbonate material.

The FMC factory was in nearby San Jose. I read a story about the troubles with the aluminum armor on their new Bradley Fighting Vehicle. The Bradley was having PR problems already but now the issue was the armor. Aluminum is a bad material for armor, since it doesn’t stop bullets very well. When they come through, they cause something called “spall,” which means that the pieces of the armor itself become deadly little weapons. And aluminum burns.

The army, though, wanted to save weight so they told FMC to make the Bradleys out of aluminum. (FMC was later sold and is today United Defense LP owned in part by George Bush’s Carlyle Group.)

So I went to FMC and proposed to line the inside of a Bradley with Lexgard, the way we did with limos. This would protect everyone from spall and fire, because Lexgard is fireproof and non-toxic. Installation would have been relatively easy in the boxy Bradley. I was politely turned down.

Puzzled, I called Dr. Charles Church, the head of research at the Pentagon. He said, “Listen don’t try to modify an existing vehicle. If you want to do something, design it from the ground up and make your armor integral with your chassis.”

So that’s what I did. I came up with something I called “The FLEA,” which stood for, “Forward Light Escort, Armored.” I used an unknown but powerful fiberglass armor for the body with hardened Lexgard windows. It was to be hydraulically operated with its wheels almost two feet away from the body, for protection against tank landmines. My design was based on my experience with landmines in Rhodesia as a member of their security forces in the terror war in the 70s.

Shortly after my design was complete (1982), the army put out a request for proposal (RFP) for a new vehicle they called the “High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle,” or “HMMWV.” The new Jeep and light truck. I duly submitted the FLEA to Tank Automotive Command (TACOM) in Michigan.

After a month or so, I called TACOM and inquired as to the progress of the selection process. The officer said, “The FLEA yes, I have it here Oh, yeah this is armored. We don’t want armor.”

I knew the specification they wanted. The bodywork had to defeat the equivalent of a pellet fired from a pellet gun. Something like 19 grains at 435 feet per second. Something silly like that. I mentioned this to the officer. “Yeah, right. We call it psychological armor'”

“‘Psychological armor?'” I let that sink in to my brain. “You mean, the guys just THINK they’re sitting behind armor?”

He chuckled. “Yeah, pretty much.”

“But, ” I said, “I’m under the weight requirement even with the armor. Why not give them the protection?”

“That’s not what we want.”

Back in ’82, when the HMMWV was being designed, the US Army must have thought it was never going to be shot at, ever again. That’s the charitable view. A more realistic view is that the US Army doesn’t give a damn if the troops get shot at or not. They’re expendable, just like the vehicles.

But criticizing the Pentagon and the administration is a failure to support the troops. Right.