Saturday, December 31, 2005

I Love New York!

Just got back from my annual after Christmas adventure to the Big Apple. It was, as usual, fantastic! There is nothing like NYC, especially at the Christmas/New Year's Season. I was particularly spoiled this time as we stayed at THE FOUR SEASONS hotel. We were pampered and treated like royalty. The crowds this year in NYC were reportedly larger than usual, and our trek in Times Square on Friday night, the night before the big New Year's Eve event, proved that Times Square was wall-to-wall bodies.
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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Chalk One Up For The Unions

I guess the New York City Transit Workers made their point last week when they walked off the job for brief three-day strike. Thousands of bus and subway workers are poised to reap up to $14,000 each in a new contract pension windfall that will ease the pain of their strike penalties - but will cost commuters an estimated $110 million. I know the strike was hell for those who rely on the NYC mass transit, but as a union man myself, I have to say, "Way to Go!" The MTA (Metropolitan Transit Authority) and Transport Workers Union Local 100 President Roger Toussaint wouldn't comment yesterday, but some workers said the deal made last week's strike worthwhile. I had mixed feelings about the strike when it took place, but then I found out that the MTA had a surplus of about $1 billion, I sided with the Union members. Typical "corporate America": make more, more, more, and give less, less, less. Who was going to reap from that large surplus? Do you really think the transit riders or the workers? Of course not! That surplus would have probably stayed right in the bigshots pockets. So, it was time the transit workers reaped some of the benefits of the surplus, and they appear to have obtained it. Outsiders said there was no clear winner in the contract. Assemblyman Richard Brosky (D-Westchester, NY) said, "They both got what they could live with, which is what collective bargaining is all about." As far as I'm concerned, this was a victory for unions and workers all over America!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Another Postal Rate Hike

I was standing in line at the Post Office today, and the man in front of me asked the postal clerk for a book of stamps. The postal clerk asked if the man wanted the old stamps or the new? The man said, "What do the new stamps look like?" "As of January 8, 2006, the cost of a stamp goes up from $.37 to $.39," the clerk said to the man. I heard someone a few weeks ago say something about the Post Office wanting to raise the cost of stamps, but I don't remember reading or hearing anything more about it. But, sure enough, as of January 8, 2006, the cost of a first class stamp is going up to $.39. The United States Postal Service, it appears is raising its rates 5.5%, so it's not only first class stamps but all postal services. And if you think you'll save by using other mail delivery services, they're going to be following suit. FedEx and UPS will be also raising their rates as of January 2, 2006, and DHL will surely follow soon thereafter. The reason for the rate increase with the United Postal Service is to help pay for the cost of retirees benefits. Before I knew that, I must say, I was pissed! But, I guess I can't complain too much about the rate increase if it is going to be used for retirees. After all, look at what the major car manufacturers did to their retirees; cut their health benefits!
Even though I won't complain about the USPS rate increase, I will complain about its service, or lack thereof. It's one thing to have an increase in something if it means better service, but the USPS service just seems to get worse and worse! A few days before Christmas I needed a four stamps. So off to the local Post Office I went. The line, as I suspected, was long. So, I went to the handy-dandy stamp dispensing machine, which rarely works right anyway, and I know it. But it seemed functional. So I put in a buck for 2 stamps: total of $.74. I received my stamps, but no change. The machine's message read, "Credit for refund can be obtained from clerk." Well, that's nice; I used the machine because I didn't want to wait in line, so I'm not going to do so now for my $.26 change. So, needing two more stamps, I put in another dollar and lost another $.26. So, the USPS got an additional $.52 from me that day.
The Friday before Christmas, a package arrived for me. Since I was not at home during the time of delivery, the postman, or postwoman, left the package right in front of my apartment door. Damn good thing I was coming home! I cannot believe the package was just left there! Not that I really wanted to go to the Post Office to pick it up, but how did the mailman know I was even home. That package could have sat there for God only knows how long. And my friend informed the other day that his mailman had a package to be delivered for him. The mailman quickly rang the doorbell, tapped on the door, then left, all within a matter of a minute or so, before my friend could even answer the door. So he had to go to the Post Office to get his package.
No, I don't mind paying a little extra for postal service. But please, Mr. Postman! Give me a little better service for my little bit of extra $$$. I will continue to try to do as much over the internet such as bill paying to avoid adding too much revenue to the USPS.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Help For Gay Teens

The Trevor Project is a non-profit organization established to promote acceptance of gay teens, and to aid in suicide prevention among that group. A hotline is available to any gay teen: 866-4UTrevor (866-488-7386).

Buying With Equality In Mind

This coming year, I am going to try my best to buy merchandise that is made/sold by companies that support gay rights and equality. I hope you would join me. The Human Rights Campaign has a "Buying For Equality" guide that will provide you with the information needed to support products from companies that support equality. I suggest you take a look at the guide and see what companies support equality.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

My Christmas Eve

“Man am I stuffed,” I said to myself as I drove home on Christmas Eve. I had just finished visiting family, and the food and drink could have fed a third world nation. Well, maybe a few families in a third world nation. Seafood, cold cuts, salads, cakes and pies, wine and beer; all so delicious and filling. Christmas music was playing in the home, and even a few brave, well, maybe drunk, souls sang along. If we had a karaoke machine, I’m sure as the evening progressed so would have the participation. And now, on my 30 minute drive home, I would have to be extra careful to abide by the traffic laws. Even though I hadn’t drank that much, and it was a couple hours now since my last one, I certainly didn’t need to get pulled over by some overzealous cop protecting his citizens from intoxicated drivers. And I wouldn’t want any cop perceiving my tiredness as drunkenness.
About 10 minutes into my drive I decided to stop at the next Wawa for a cup of coffee. And, there it was, just ahead of me. So I parked my car a bit away from the door hoping the walk in the cold air would help invigorate the blood flow in my system. As I opened my car door, I noticed a man, I’d say maybe in his 50’s, standing near a trash can. He saw me get out of the car, and he slowly moved toward me. “Oh no, not a beggar asking me for money,” I said to myself. So at first I pretended not to see him, and I was for sure not going to make eye contact. “Excuse me sir,” he said to me. What was I to do now? Pretend I was deaf as well as blind? “Hi,” I said. He looked safe enough, not as if he was intending to do me any harm. “Anyway you could buy me a cup of coffee?” he asked. Now, it was Christmas Eve, and I do not consider myself to be a Scrooge, so what was I to say? “OK. I’ll be right out. Oh, and do you want anything in it?” “No. I drink it black,” he said to me, and I proceeded into the store.
When I came outside, I at first did not see the man. Then I realized he was standing by my car. “Damn, buddy. I bought you a cup of coffee, now don’t expect anything else!” I walked up to the man and gave him his cup of coffee. “Thanks,” he said. “Can you do me a favor? I only live about 2 miles up the highway. Anyway you could give me a ride home? It’s been a long day and I don’t feel like hoofing it there.” Now what? I don’t make a habit of giving total strangers rides home. After all, my mother always told me not to ride with strangers. But, it was Christmas Eve, and the man looked desperate. And besides, what could happen? “OK. I can give you a ride. Hop in,” I said to the man. I unlocked the doors and in he jumped as I walked around to my door. “You don’t know how much I appreciate this,” the man said to me. “It’s cool. Not a problem at all,” I lied to him and myself. “Just tell me where to stop,” I told the man, then drove up the highway, as I watched the odometer for the 2 mile mark.
As I drove I couldn’t help but think that even though I work in a “helping” field, I do very little direct “helping” and now was my chance to do some of the “helping” I profess to do. So on I drove. Just before the 2 mile mark, the man said, “Here it is. This is the driveway back to my house. I live a little bit in the woods.” I was expecting the man to just have me drop him off at the end of his driveway, but I asked anyway, “Do you want me to drive in?” “If you don’t mind,” he said. Now what was I to say? I had just asked, out of stupidity or for whatever reason, if he wanted me to drive him to his house. How could I say, “No, I changed my mind. Walk down that long, dark driveway of yours and leave me alone!” And it was, after all, Christmas Eve. So I turned in. It was a dirt driveway, well actually a road, but fortunately, it was dry and hard gravel, not muddy or messy. And damn! What a long driveway it was. I would guess it was at least three quarters of a mile before I could make out a building of some kind. It was dark, except for the light of the moon, so I really couldn’t see if it was a house, a garage, or whatnot. “This is my humble abode,” the man said to me. I noticed several boxes on the porch to what I now could tell was a house. “Before you leave, anyway you can help me take those boxes inside?” the man asked me. Now what was I to say? After all, it was Christmas Eve. “Yes,” I said. “ I guess I can help you. But I really need to be going quickly. I am tired and need to get to bed early so I can be up early tomorrow morning.”
So I parked the car and turned off the engine. “Was that the right thing to do?” I thought to myself. “What if I need to make a quick getaway?” But the man seemed harmless enough, and by now, I felt pretty confident he was not some deranged killer or madman. He was just a man down on his luck that needed someone to help him, and maybe give him some human compassion. “We won’t be very long, I promise,” he said to me, as he exited my car.
I followed him up to his door. He opened the door, reached inside, and turned on a dim porch light. “There. That should help some,” he said to me as he reached for one of the boxes. I grabbed a smaller box and put in on top of a larger box, and proceeded to go into the house. As I stepped into the house, I felt a jolt of something! It felt like that feeling when you stick something into an electrical socket. And a bright light, one that I never experienced before, blinded me! “What the…” was all I could think. And then, a feeling of complete nothingness overtook my body. It was as if someone had drugged me with valium and my muscles just relaxed to the point of not being able to move, and not really caring that I couldn’t move. Then the light dimmed and I could see into the room.
There, in front of me, was the man, now dressed in a three-pieced suit, and behind him, a party of some kind. It looked like hundreds of people, nicely dressed, eating, drinking, laughing, and dancing having the time of their lives. “Karl,” the man said to me. “Because you had the decency to help me, you will experience what very few have. My friends, all who have already left this world, welcome you into theirs. Join the party.” No longer did I feel full from eating earlier. No longer was I tired. And I did, I did join the party. I ate, I drank, I laughed, I sang, for what seemed like hours. But I never felt tired. I never felt stuffed from all the food and wine. I was in a feeling of complete euphoria, complete satisfaction. And I noticed that my back, which was a little sore earlier in the day, didn’t hurt a bit now. What a party this was! I had never been to one so full of life, so full of excitement!
Finally, the man came to me and said, “It’s time to leave now. But you will be back, I assure you. One day, when it’s your time, you too shall join us for the party again. But then it will be a forever party; one that will never stop. If you keep on helping others as you did me, this is what awaits you. If you keep on fighting for rights of others, for equality and justice, this is what awaits you.” And the man led me to the door.
Once outside, all seemed as it had before I entered the house. I turned around to the house, and all I could see was the porch and the dimly lit light. I looked at my watch: 8:45PM. But it coudn't be. I must have been in that house for hours! I got into my car and drove home. Feeling so at ease and peaceful, I immediately went to bed and slept like a baby.
I never heard another thing until Christmas morning when I heard the neighbor kids playing with their new motorized cars on the walk outside my bedroom window. After getting up and showered, I just had to go back to the house where I dropped off the man. Going in the opposite direction, I looked and looked for the driveway that I drove the man down just last night. But I couldn’t find it. Then, I saw the Wawa where I met the man. I turned around in the store parking lot and watched my odometer to see when I had traveled two miles. Still no driveway. I pulled over, turned around, to again look. Still no driveway. I again headed back to the Wawa. I again kept my eye on the odometer and on the road, making certain I pulled over at the almost two mile mark. As I approached the two mile mark, I pulled the car over and slowly drove, looking at every inch of tree to find that driveway, but no driveway. I know I hadn't dreamt the whole thing. It was too real! Then, on one of the trees, I noticed something. It was a coffee cup nailed to the tree.
A Christmas miracle? After all it was Christmas Eve.

Don't Change The Name of The 30th Street Station

I know Benjamin Franklin was a great man, one to be honored, but for what my 2 cents is worth, as a New Jerseyian, not even a Philadelphian, please don't change the name of the 30th Street Station to Ben Station (The Philadelphia Inquirer-12/25/05).

"Brokeback Mountain" An Aid In Breaking Down Discrimination?

In Today's Philadelphia Inquirer (Sunday, 12/25/05), there's a front page story, 'Brokeback' signaling a new attitude on gays? As most of you probably already know, Brokeback Mountain is a story of two American cowboys that fall in love. The movie is slowly gaining popularity in the US, and the movie is being released in more and more cities. (I myself have not yet seen the movie). The Inquirer looked at the impact the movie is having on Americans. "The pulse of a nation can't be measured by the popularity of a single movie," the article states, "...the early success of Brokeback Mountain. an anguished love story about two male ranch hands, is being interpreted by some as a sign that Americans are growing more compassionate and broad-minded about homosexuality." According to William Doherty, professor of family and social science at the the University of Minnesota, "It's very clear from surveys that the country has been moving rapidly toward more acceptance." In the Inquirer article a registered nurse is interviewed, stating she wanted to see the movie, "because I have friends who are gay, and I wonder what it's like for them." Another person interviewed was a psychologist, who said, "I see a lot of gay kids who are in high school, and it's something I'd like to understand in order to help them."
Brokeback Mountain may well be another tool to help Americans better understand the gay community. In turn, hopefully more acceptance will be the result. I would also like to suggest that maybe if more of our gay brothers and sisters with celebrity status had the courage to come out, perhaps even more acceptance of gays would be the result. (I personally know coming out is not an easy decision). Look at the positive affect celebs admitting to depression or a medical condition has. Statistically, 10% or 1 in 10 men are exclusively gay per the Kinsey Report. I would argue this percentage is even higher; one cannot admit being gay, even in an anonymous survey unless one can admit to himself that he is gay. So, if 1 in 10 men is gay, there must be more gay athletes, actors, doctors, and so forth. Look at a professional football team and tell me there aren't any gay players out on the field.
At the end of the Inquirer article, one interviewee states, "My father is a fisherman and a hunter, but I can guarantee you he and his buddies are not going to see it (Brokeback Mountain)." Well, statistically, it is highly likely this father has at least 1 gay buddy in his group. And yes, gay men do hunt and fish too.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Merry Christmas

Believe what you believe. Celebrate what you want to celebrate. But to me, this is Christmas:

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them; and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace,
good will toward men.
(King James Bible, Luke 2:8-14)

Friday, December 23, 2005

Maybe This Is Why We Cannot Allow Gay Marriage

A 64-year-old man in Wisconsin has pleaded no contest to charges in Clark County Circuit Court after telling police he regularly had been using calves for sexual gratification. Many opposed to gay marriage give as one of their reasons why gay marriage should not be approved is that if we allow gays to marry, we have to allow marriage of people and animals. I argue that maybe if this guy married one of these cattle, he wouldn't have wasted the courts time and money. Go on! Make an honest man of this guy!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

They're So Much More Advanced Than Us!

The USA is so hypocritical. It promotes freedom abroad and preaches tolerance towards all. But, right here at home, freedom and tolerance is not allowed for all. Just ask those of color. Just ask those of different nationalities. Just ask those of different religions. And just ask those of us that are gay. Elton John and his partner, David Furnish, will be joined together tomorrow in a civil union in the UK granting them the same rights as married couples. Former President Bill Clinton has evern given them his wishes for a happy life. But here in America, gay individuals, for the most part live as second class citizens. No freedom to marry. No freedom to the same rights as other married couples. And some face intolerance everyday. Sure, it's not as bad as in some countries, but the US should be setting the example. Just as we supposedly are doing elsewhere in the world. The US should practice what it preaches. Tolerance, not necessarily agreement, with all.

Senator Barbara Boxer Demands Answers!

Below is from an e-mail received from Senator Barbara Boxer seeking further clarification of Bush’s authorization of illegal, perhaps impeachable, surveillance of American citizens:
On December 16, along with the rest of America, I learned that President Bush authorized the National Security Agency to spy on Americans without getting a warrant from a judge. President Bush underscored his support for this action in his press conference today.
On Sunday, December 18, former White House Counsel John Dean and I participated in a public discussion that covered many issues, including this surveillance. Mr. Dean, who was President Nixon's counsel at the time of Watergate, said that President Bush is "the first President to admit to an impeachable offense." Today, Mr. Dean confirmed his statement.
This startling assertion by Mr. Dean is especially poignant because he experienced first hand the executive abuse of power and a presidential scandal arising from the surveillance of American citizens.
Given your constitutional expertise, particularly in the area of presidential impeachment, I am writing to ask for your comments and thoughts on Mr. Dean's statement.
Unchecked surveillance of American citizens is troubling to both me and many of my constituents. I would appreciate your thoughts on this matter as soon as possible.
Barbara Boxer United States Senator
This was sent by Senator Boxer to:
  1. Cass Sunstein, University of Chicago Law School

  2. Bruce Ackerman, Yale University

  3. Susan Low Bloch, Georgetown University Law Center

  4. Michael Gerhardt, College of William and Mary School of Law
America needs answers!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Let The Gift Giving (And Receiving) Begin

Started giving, and yes of course, receiving this year's Christmas gifts. And what a smile a nice bottle of wine can put on my face. I wish everyone of you a very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanza, and Joyous Whatever you may celebrate!

How Do Your Legislators Do With Gay Rights Issues?

Check out HRC's scorecard and see how your legislators do in supporting gay rights.

Is America Gonna Fall For It Again?

George Bush interrupted important television last night to again try to persuade Americans that he has everything in control, and that everything is hunky-dory over in the land of Iraq (pronounced by Bush as Eye-Rack). The US is fighting the terrorist over there so we won't have to fight them here. And this comes just days after Bush admitted to giving his approval to the NSA to illegal conduct survellience on Americans. Is America going to fall for this clown's mistruths and misadventures again?
First, in 2000, Bush wins an election through the courts, not the public vote. Then he leads America into an illegal war. He continues to make excuses about how Iraq was not cooperating with UN Weapons Inspectors, and how Iraq was producing Weapons of Mass Destruction. This of course, was found to be untrue, so now, as Bush mentioned in last night's address, Iraq had the potential to develop weapons. What country doesn't? He continues to indirectly link Iraq with Al-Qeida, which has also been disproven. And most recently, Bush informs American citizens that he authorized the illegal survellience of Americans. No big deal, you say? Maybe you were one of those wiretapped or videotaped or whatever for no other reason than you made a long distance call to a specific location deemed an enemy. What will Bush do next?
How can Americans continue to support this man? He lies. He sidesteps the law. He ignores the Constitution. And all because the US is in a "state of war." So that makes everything Bush does OK? This is the USA. Not Saudi Arabia. This country is based on laws. This country has a solid Constitution which nobody, not even the President of the US, has the right to disregard. Bill Clinton was impeached over what? Personal misconduct? And George Bush continues to do whatever he wishes with total disregard for the law. When is America going to wake up and say, "Enough is enough"? This clown has be stopped. Who know what his next step will be. Besides dividing a country like no other president in recent times, Bush puts us all in jeopardy with his behavior.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

A Smooth Jazz Christmas With David Koz & Friends

I just returned for WJJZ's Smooth Jazz Christmas with David Koz & Friends at the Commerce Bank Center For The Performing Arts in Washington Township. David was joined by South African singer/guitarist, Jonathan Butler, pianist, David Benoit, and a much slimmer singer, Patti Austin. The show was awsome! The group played and sang Christmas songs and their own individual hits and favorites. David and Patti sang, "Baby It's Cold Outside" with a slightly different twist as Patti tried unsuccessfully to "seduce" David, despite telling her, "It's not gonna happen....I told you already, Patti, I'm gay." Patti and Jonathan did one of the best renditions of "O Holy Night" I have ever heard. The harmony and combination of their voices was out of this world! It was two and a half hours of pure pleasure and enjoyment.

Prediction on Damon/Bozan Marriage: 4-6 Months

My prediction on the length of time Matt Damon and Luciana Bozan will be married is 4-6 months, 12 months tops. Just face it, Matt & Ben: you were made for each other!

Great Christmas Music & Light Display

A couple of weeks ago, I saw the Trans-Siberian Orchestra in concert for the first time. It was an amazing show. I hope Lost, from Lost's World, doesn't mind me making this reference, but you have to check this music & light display out. (Click on "Watch this" when you get there).

What Kind Of Day Did They Have?

Yesterday, while driving to the gym, there was a fair amount of traffic. It is Christmas time and I live near a mall and many stores very busy at this time. And I must admit, I get very impatient with drivers; they're either in the wrong lane, moving too slowly, stopping/starting, or some other thing that makes me, the perfect driver, get ticked. So, I am in the left lane of a four lane highway, and all of a sudden, a mini-bus ahead of me moves over in the left lane, in front of me. Soon a van does the same thing. I assume they are together and they have quickly realized they need to make a left turn not too far ahead. And I, cursing under my breath because these vehicles should have realized before hand that in order to turn left, one must be in the left lane, and there is no reason why these vehicles didn't get in the left lane earlier, began to move into the right lane to go past these two morons! And then I realize why they moved into the left lane so suddenly. There was an accident blocking the right lane that from where I was, could not be seen. Those vehicles in front of me weren't intentionally trying to aggravate me. They had no choice but to move into my lane as a result of what they were experiencing. I then realized I was the moron, jumping to conclusions as to why those vehicles so ignorantly moved in front of me.
But it made me realize something else. So many times we, and I will include myself, become impatient with others because of what we perceive as just plain ignorance or stupidity. But what we fail to realize is we have no idea whatsoever what these individuals have just experienced in their own lives. We don't know if someone of importance just died in an individual's life. We don't know if someone just broke up or divorced a spouse or partner. We don't know if someone just got news that he/she has some terminal illness. I know some people are just plain ignorant, but sometimes there may be a perfectly good reason why someone appears to be so. At this time of the year, and always, let's try, and I include myself in this, to realize there may be a perfectly good reason why someone acts the way they do.

Will The Truth About U.S. Interrogation Come Out?

Poland has announced it will conduct a "detailed" probe into secret prisons in Poland run by the U.S. CIA to interrogate suspected terrorists. There will be more than a dozen such investigations taking place in European countries that hosted secret U.S.-run prisons in which prisoners were reportedly tortured. It will be interesting, and possibly embarrassing, for the U.S. We all have seen movies of such occurrences, but could they be for real? Has the U.S. CIA been torturing prisoners in foreign countries. There were reports that I heard shortly after 9-11 of the U.S. sending suspects to foreign countries to conduct "interrogations." These countries reportedly used torture to obtain information. Since the U.S. would not do such "business" in its own country, sending suspects to foreign lands to get information was the next best thing. I only hope that when the European countries are done their probes, the U.S. will not be seen as bad as many of the countries we reprimand for such behavior.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

What News Does Bush Watch?!

Can someone please tell me what news Bush is wathing? How can he keep touting that Iraq is making such progress?. Bush is "amazed" at the progress being made in Iraq! That's not what is being reported. That's not what the generals in the field are stating! But then again, Bush is in awe of people like Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney! So I guess it isn't so amazing that Bush is amazed. He is easily amazed!

Saturday, December 03, 2005

'Tis The Season!

Tis the season! Started the day by putting up the tree and the few decorations around the apartment. The cold, crisp air today made me feel like Christmas! Shopping at THE WALK in Atlantic City really put me in the Christmas spirit. Well, actually it started last Saturday night with a tremendous concert by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Wow! The music was fantastic. Sitting, relaxing now with my "honey", listening to Diana Krall sing Christmas songs, and the prospect of a little snow tonight! Again, wow! So, it has begun! The Christmas preparation.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Bring Home The Troops.........For Black Friday Shopping

The Press of Atlantic City reported today (November 26, 2005) that it took two entire police departments, Hamilton Township and Egg Harbor Township, to restore order at Wal-Mart and Circuit City in Hamilton Township (Mays Landing) on "Black Friday." At 5am, the Cirucuit City prepared to open its doors to a crowd that stretched about 500 feet. Some of these lunatics waited since 8pm the night before in 28 degree temperatures. These people were not to be denied! The Cirucuit City manager was apparently handing out maps and advertising circulars to customers at the front of the line, but those further back thought vouchers were being handed out for sale merchandise. Those individuals from the back rushed to the front of the line. Several shoppers were either trampled or pushed against the store doors. One woman was treated for rib injuries and another for other injuries. Both were taken to a local hospital. Police estimated that about 1,000 people also waited outside that Mays Landing Wal-Mart, where one woman burst through the crowd, shoving an older woman. Security and police eventually caught the over-zealous shopper and escorted her out. A half-hour later, police were called again for assistance in the electronics department, where the surging crowd began taking things off the shelves while others pushed to the front of the checkout lines. Police helped close the store to restore order, before it was re-opened. As the store re-0pened, Anthony Martinez, 25, Atlantic City, shoved an officer and was arrested for resisting arrest. The primary object of desire at Wal-Mart was a $398.00 HP Pavilion notebook computer. There were only 35 of them available.
I ventured out for some "Black Friday" shopping, but waited until about 2pm to head out. Other than a little traffic as I made my way to the Cherry Hill Mall, I encountered no bad experiences. Lines were a bit long, but nobody was pushing, shoving, or beating their way to the front of the lines. And guess what? The sales were still there in the afternoon. No, I was not about to even try to get one of 35 items available, no matter what the item! And I was not waiting at any store for hours to purchase anything. Believe me, there is nothing worth purchasing that bad.
If for no other reason, maybe US troops need to be brought home by next "Black Friday" to help keep the peace.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Bill Maher's New Rule Concerning, "Who Cares What College Your Kid Goes To?"

One of HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher's New Rules from 11/4/05: "New Rule: I'm not impressed by what college your kid is going to. George Bush went to Yale. The End. Besides, these days, kids only learn about two things in college: drugs and bisexuality. And you don't need to send them to college for that. You can send them to my house." So, parents/students: don't think too highly of what college your kid/you attend.

This Is What It's All About

This is what the holidays are all about!

So Who Do You Believe? Bush Or The Daily Mirror?

George Bush is in another situation that raises a question of his honesty. The Daily Mirror, a British paper, reported Tuesday that British Prime Minister Tony Blair talked Bush out of launching an air strike against Al-Jazeera's headquarters in Qatar -- a U.S. ally -- during an April 16, 2004 meeting at the White House. Of course the The White House called the report "outlandish," but Al-Jazeera urged the British government to either confirm or deny the report. I ask you, who do you believe? Bush, who insisted Iraq had WMDs? Bush, who insisted Iraq was connected to 9-11? Bush, who insists he didn't twist the truth to put the US in Iraq in the first place? Bush, who said he never had plans to go to war in Iraq, despite the now infamous DOWNING STREET MEMO (remember that)? Please Bush! Stop lying and just be honest with the people of the US and the world! Only time will tell in this new revelation about Bush & Company!


To my millions of readers and adoring fans, I just want to say...Hey! Wait a minute. That was my unbridled imagination getting away!
Actually, to those of you who do pass through, I want to say, "HAPPY THANKSGIVING!" I have so much to really be thankful for, I don' t know where to begin. I would have to first of all be thankful for my family who I love dearly. For my friends, I am forever grateful. I am thankful for my job, as much as I dislike it at times. I am thankful to be living in a country in which I am able to write such things, especially criticism of our government. For life itself, I am thankful. And my health, which I sometimes take for granted until I see a friend struck down with illness. So...I am just THANKFUL! Pass it along!

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Discrimination in Washington Township, NJ

Michael Kurz, a police officer in Washington Township, NJ, has filed a discrimination lawsuit against the township. According to a report in the Courier-Post (Tuesday, November 22, 2005), Officer Kurz confided in another police officer about being gay, Cpl. Frank Gurcsik, whom Kurz thought was a friend and confidant, about five years ago. By the end of that week, "The entire department knew..."Kurz stated. That "friend" quickly outed Kurz over some drinks with fellow officers at a restaurant. Then, the officers threw homophobic insults and slurs at Kurz. The last straw was when Kurz learned that during a discussion about emergency lights on civilian cars, another officer asked, "Are homosexual cops going to be allowed to have rainbow light bars?" Kurz, sick of the harrassment, went to his superiors. But nothing has been done, with an internal investigation taking seven months. Now, attorney Clifford Van Syoc of Cherry Hill, NJ, has filed a discrimination lawsuit against Washington Township.
One might ask, "What's the big deal? Kurz was not physically assaulted or disciplined or fired?" But I ask, "Is this something Kurz, or any other gay person, should put up with?" If officers asked a fellow African-American officer if he needed spear holders in his cruiser, that officer would be filing a civil rights lawsuit, and rightfully so. Damn! THIS IS 2005! And this shit still happens. And it involves people who are supposed to be professionals! These officers are supposedly trained in sensitivity to people with different backgrounds, and they cannot even live peacefully with a fellow member with a difference! And shame on Officer Gurcsik! Such a traitor, and some might say, a "woman." Breach of confidence and gossip!
I will personally be writing to Washington Township to tell them they have wronged Officer Kurz. I wish I could somehow get a personal message to Officer Kurz to tell him I support him and feel he should do everything possible to get what he deserves for being mistreated. Join me if you can. (The mayor of Washington Township can be e-mailed at:

What's Good For The Goose Is Good For The Gander?

I find it quite interesting that a teacher, Debra Lafave, at Greco Middle School in Temple Terrace, Florida, was able to avoid any prison time for having sex with a 14 year old student. Ms. Lafave pleaded guilty to two counts of lewd and lascivious behavior. She was sentenced to three years of house arrest followed by seven years of probation, and she must register as a sex offender. All this for having sex with a 14 year old student three times in four days in June 2004, one of those times including having sex with the boy in the back seat of a car while the boy’s 15 year old cousin drove them around. (In reality, then, involving another minor boy). According to the victim, the teacher also performed oral sex on him multiple times, including once in the teacher’s home.
What I find interesting is that if this was a male teacher and a 14 year old female student, the teacher’s head would roll. I am sure the court would be throwing the book at the teacher. And, I’m sure a male teacher would be facing several years in prison, not just given house arrest and probation for such a crime. I am also sure the community would be outraged to no end if this was a male teacher assaulting a female student.
So then, is it fair to say that a double standard exists here? It’s alright for a boy to have sex with an adult because that’s what boys are supposed to do, have sex? But a 14 year old girl on the other hand, is supposed to be a virgin until she finds “Mr. Right”?

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Thanks, But Keep Helping, Please!

The HUMAN RIGHTS CAMPAIGN needs your help. Please lend your support.

Oh My, Bush! Even The Iraqis Want A Pullout Timetable!

Gee! How many more are going to have to ask for a timetable for the US pullout of Iraq before Bush realizes it? Now, Iraqi leaders, Shites, Sunnis, and Kurds, are asking the US for a pullout timetable. I guess that leaves just about everyone but die-hard war mongers like Bush & Company, and those who support them, asking for such a timetable. But Bush & Company insist we must "stay the course." The "course," of course, is more of the same. Insurgent attacks, American deaths, and no forward movement. Come on Bush! Wake up! Stop being so stubborn in your insistence that this is a just war!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Logo Is On

Just a reminder that Logo is on! Logo is the gay-oriented television station, a product of MTV. On Comcast, Logo in my viewing area is on channel 163. (Logo is also on Direct TV). Logo shows gay-themed movies, travel shows, stand up comedy, and soap-opera type series. Logo has been on Comcast for about 2 months now, and I am finding it very entertaining. It is very encouraging that there is a channel devoted to gay programming. I would also encourage any straight individuals to check it out as well.

God's Wrath On What?

This is a map of the "Red States/Blue States" from the 2004 Presidential election. Take a close look at the map. Notice where the states that have had natural disasters are located? Pat Robertson and other evangelical, right-winged conservative Christians have been preaching that God's wrath has been unleashed through these terrible natural disasters on those states that have been leaving God out of them, or living lifestyles contrary to God. Well, I would again beg to differ. Maybe God has been lashing out against those states that elected a hate monger as president of the US of A. Maybe it isn't gays or people who celebrate life that God hates; maybe it's those that choose to take life in the name of justice that God hates. Maybe right-winged, conservative Christians such as Mr. Robertson should start to consider what happens to a nation when in the name of God injustices take place. Didn't Jesus say, "Blessed are the peacemakers" and "You will reap what you sow"?

Apology Accepted!

Not sure where this originally came from, but it's great! And, Connecticut, I accept your apology.

Friday, November 18, 2005

What Progress We Are Making!

Yes, George! We are making such progress in Iraq! I am glad you're happy with what is occuring in Iraq. You are about the only one that is! (Well, Dick is too, but what do you expect?). More suicide bombers killed dozens in Iraq. If the US is making such progress in Iraq, why isn't the public hearing about it? Even military experts and veteren generals are saying, "Enough is enough!" But George keeps insisting we must stay the course because we are winning! Winning what? The race to see how many more can be killed? Give us a break, George! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Get the US out of Iraq!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Credit Card Companies Need To Get F***ed!

The New Bankruptcy Code went into effect October 17, 2005. The new law was the product of intense lobbying in Congress by credit card companie and the banking industry. As many against the change in the law argued, the new law would hurt only the middle class who often struggle to make ends meet, begin using credit cards for needed purchases, then, before they realize it, cannot continue to make the payments. (I am one who personally knows the negative affects of misusing credit). Many times, after the finance charges, late fees, fees for going above the approved credit limit, or just fees to make money, the minimum payment becomes a nightmare, and it is next to impossible to get out of the debt. For many, bankruptcy is the only way out of the situation to make a fresh start. But now the new law will make that next to impossible.
And now I have noticed a commercial recently from Citibank. It is promoting Citi Simplicity. With Citi Simplicity, consumers are informed that they will not have to pay any late fees as long as they "use your card once each billing period for a purchase of cash advance..." In other words, if you don't want to pay a late fee, just charge more. So, the credit card company is advocating misuse of the credit card. Keep on charging to avoid late fees. But what about finance charges? NOPE! They of course keep piling up! So Citibank is encouraging consumers to keep on charging, even if they cannot afford to pay it! Keep on charging to avoid the late fees, but keep on paying the Citibank more in finance charges.
That is why I hate credit card companies! That is why I never once felt bad for credit card companies when someone declared bankruptcy and said, "F*** you, credit card company!" Credit Card companies are nothing more than legalized loan sharks. When will they beg Congress to allow their henchmen to break the kneecaps of those who can't pay?

Poor George Is Getting Criticized...And He Don't Like It

Poor Georgey Bush is all upset because of the criticism of his Iraq War. Yesterday, he lashed out at critics saying their criticism is hurting the war on terror and giving troops the wrong impression of US support for them. Bush blames politicians for the criticism of the war, but I remind Bush that it is not only politicians that oppose the war in Iraq. Veteran's Against the Iraq War , and citizens like me also have spoken out against the war. And the criticism is growing, as people realize what a farce the entire rationale for war against Saddam Hussein actually was. Mr. Bush, it is YOU AND YOUR ADMINISTRATION that began this political war to begin with. It is YOU AND YOUR ADMINISTRATION that is to blame for more than 2,000 American deaths and many, many more innocent Iraqi deaths! Don't even try to blame those speaking out against the war as a way to justify your mistake! As Senator John Kerry said, “I wish President Bush knew better than to dishonour America's veterans by playing the politics of fear and smear on Veterans Day.” “This administration misled a nation into war by cherry-picking intelligence and stretching the truth beyond recognition,” Mr. Kerry said. Sen. Edward Kennedy said, “It's deeply regrettable that the president is using Veterans Day as a campaign-like attempt to rebuild his own credibility by tearing down those who seek the truth about the clear manipulation of intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war.” As has been Bush's typical smear and fear MO, he claims if US troops left Iraq, the terrorists would take control and ruin the world. The US and the world are tired of the same old song and dance, Mr. Bush!

Saturday, November 05, 2005

Tuesday Is Election Day In NJ....Thank God It'll Be Over!

Image hosted by Photobucket.comImage hosted by Tuesday, November 8th, is election day in NJ. And I will be so glad when it's over! I think Corzine is better for NJ, but really, I don't care who wins! I will just be glad that it's over! I am sick and tired of all the political commercials, both on radio and tv. Seems every 5 minutes, there is a commercial. First, one candidate tells what he can do and how bad his opponent is, then 5 minutes later, the other candidate comes on saying just the opposite. Both views are filled with lies and distortions, and voters can never really know what to believe from these ads. It appears to me, however, that the Republican candidates are taking the lead from Bush by using scare tactics. This year, in southern NJ, it is the sex offenders and imminent domain that are the focus of the Republicans. If you elect the Democrats, the sex offenders will be on the prowl, but don't worry, because you won't have any property to worry about because imminent domain will take it all away. I have heard both parties complain of the other raising taxes. Both parties describe scandal occuring in the other party. To be honest, I don't feel like I can trust any politician. I sometimes just look at is as which is the lesser of the 2 evils. What a way to decide who sets policy for us! My apathy toward the entire US political process is not the view of the minority; most Americans feel the same way. I wish I knew what it's going to take to get Americans interested in getting involved, but I know it's not the damned political commercials that run all day and night!

Las Vegas: Sin City? Not ToThe Mayor.

The mayor of Las Vegas, Oscar Goodman, has suggested that people who deface roads with graffiti should have their thumbs cut off on public television. He also thinks whipping or caning should be the punishment for children who get into trouble with the law. With all the other crime going on in Las Vegas, this is the answer for graffiti artists and children? Besides, why should the city/state perform these punishments? Isn't the mob there to do it? I think this mayor is one sick pup with some sick sexual fetishes.

Do You Think They're Ready?

US and Iraqi forces began Operation Steel Curtain yesterday. It's another offensive against the insurgents. This one is in Husayba, a city on the Syrian border. Three thousand US troops, including Marines, soldiers, and sailors are involved, and about 550 Iraqi troops. That translates to 82% US troops and 18% Iraqi troops. DO YOU THINK THE IRAQI'S ARE READY YET? Do you get the confident feeling that Bush has; that Iraqi's will soon be able to maitain peace and order in their own country? Bush is so pleased with the progress US troops are making in preparing the Iraqi's to defend their own country, but with situations like this, I can only ask: HOW MANY MORE YEARS WILL US TROOPS BE NEEDED IN IRAQ?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Kudos To PAX!

I understand my good friend Pax Romano confronted Candidate for Governor, Doug Forrester, on the issue of gay marriage. Maybe he'll explain exactly what was said. Kudos to you, PAX. Way to go!

Thank You, Democratic Senators

The Republican Senators are all in an uproar over yesterday's closed session that Democratic Senator Harry Reid and others demanded. Senate Intelligence Committe Chairman Pat Roberts called the closed session, "not needed, not necessary and, in my personal opinion, was a stunt." "This is an affront to me personally," said Bill Frist, a Tennessee Republican. "This is an affront to our leadership. It is an affront to the United States of America, and it is wrong." Well, Senator Frist, I for one disagree with you and do not feel it was wrong at all for the US. What is wrong for the US is the war in Iraq and the lies that put us there in the first place. Maybe this closed session of the Senate should have occurred prior to the war, but better late than never. I applaud the Democratic Senators for finally demanding some answers from Bush & Company. It was said that the recent indictment of "Scooter" Libby, Cheney's aid, would be an indictment against the war, and maybe this is the beginning. Bush, Cheney, and the rest of the gang all deserve to be fired and indicted for crimes against humanity. Colin Powell, one of the few decent members of the Bush Administration saw the indecency of the war and chose to part ways with the Bush & Company Gang.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Where Were You Then?

You won't hear me down the Democrats much in my writing, but as I read some of John Kerry's speach today, I could only ask, "Where were you and the other critics before the war with Iraq even started?" I still cannot believe how easily Bush & Company led the US into war against Iraq. I was not even the slightest bit privy to the intelligence the Bush Administration and our US Congress had at the time, but I doubted seriously the threat Sadam Hussein was to us. I knew he did not possess WMD's, and that he had nothing to do with 9-11. If the UN inspectors could find nothing, and the US wouldn't tell them where the WMD's that we had such tremendous evidence existed were, how could anyone believe WMD's really did exist? And who was I but a little peon? Why were so many, like Kerry, supportive of Bush & Company? The answer, I'm afraid, is that to speak against going to war with Iraq, to not support the invasion of Iraq, was an unpopular stance at the time. But now, everyone is on the bandwagon criticizing the war. Now it's popular to criticize. I'm not saying the war should not be criticized, because it certainly should be, 2000+ dead is a crime, but why not earlier? I only wished the Democrats had the balls back then, when it was unpopular, to stand against the war in Iraq!

Light A Candle For The 2,000

Well it's been 2,000 dead Americans in Iraq. (God only knows how many Iraqis). How many more before Bush & Company admit it was a BIG mistake? I wonder if in 10 years we'll be still asking when this thing will be over? And, will we be lighting a candle in 10 years for the 10,000 dead?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Monday, October 17, 2005

Retirees Victim of GM Stupidity?

In September, reports stated that US automakers were bracing for an autumn chill. Experts predicted dismal sales for the Big Three Automakers, amongst them GM. As gas prices rose, big SUV popularity dropped. No surprise! Who in their right mind wanted a "gas guzzler" with gas prices reaching $3.00 or more per gallon? GM was pressuring the United Auto Workers Union to lower health care costs, and Ford Motor was restructuring in a way that would close plants and cut jobs. However, the reality is auto sales are actually healthy overall. Several analysts predict 2005 sales will be around 17 million vehicles, unchanged or up slightly from 2004. Translation: company execs would continue to receive their share. But the problem? Asian car manufacturers, which didn't offer employee discounts this summer, haven't seen the kinds of ups and downs that are plaguing GM and Ford. Their U.S. market share could climb nearly 10 percent in September to 43 percent. And today, GM announced a tentative agreement with the United Auto Workers that will help the embattled automaker lower its health care costs even as GM reported a whopping $1.6 billion loss for the third quarter. The tentative agreement on health care is projected to reduce GM's retiree health care liabilities by about 25 percent, or $15 billion, and cut its annual employee health care expense by about $3 billion, CEO and Chairman Rick Wagoner said. Cash savings are estimated to be about $1 billion a year. Bottom line: retirees suffer in order to make sure GM can keep its profits up!
How unfare is this? Workers who gave years of their life to GM are now losing health benefits because GM couldn't make the profits it wanted. And part of the reason GM could not make those profits was stupidity! Keep making huge SUVs that eat gas like a linebacker at a buffet. GM, and other US car manufacturers had the opportunity to make smaller, more fuel efficient vehicles but chose not to do so. US car makers chose not to build hybrid vehicles, while foreign manufacturers did. Back in the 1970's, when the US faced a major gas shortage, US car manufacturers saw the need for fuel efficient cars. But, due to greed, both on the part of the car companies and US consumers, large gas-guzzling vehicles were once again in high demand. Now, it's again the "little guy" who suffers. It's the retirees, who have no choice or fight in the matter of their health benefits being cut, that have to suffer.
The US car manufacturers are just morons. Not only is the quality of US cars for the most part less than safisfactory, the choice of vehicles made is just as unsatifactory. It's no wonder foreign cars are so popular in the US.

And We Wonder Why They Hate Us?

US air strikes in Iraq have reportedly claimed the lives of 20 Iraqi civilians and 6 children. 25 civilians were injured. Of course, the Bush Adminstration is denying this report. And we wonder why the world hates us so!

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Pope's Continued Stance Against Gays

Daniel Williams of the Washington Post, has again brought to light Pope Benedict 16th’s opposition to homosexuality. In the past 5 months, the Pope has continued to make known his stance against homosexuality. This message has become one of the prime themes of the new Pope. Even before becoming Pope, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was very outspoken against homosexuality.
In addition to issuing new guidelines to inhibit gays from entering the priesthood, Pope Benedict 16th has fought against gay marriage. He is definitely not a friend to the gays. Critics have said that Benedict is simply preoccupied with sex. “It’s an obsession,” said Alessio de Giorgi, founder of a gay website that supports legal rights for gay couples.
In April 2005, Benedict condemned the government of Spain for legalizing gay marriage. In May, more than 100 parishioners in St. Paul, Minnesota were denied communion because they wore rainbow colored sashes to support gay Catholics.
Isn’t a shame the Pope has not spoken out against sexual abuse of children as much as he has against the opposition to equal rights for gays? Not a whole lot out of the Vatican condemning this heinous crime, which in my humble opinion, is much more of a threat to society, and yes, even the sanctity of marriage, than gay unions. (Let’s face it, kids that are victims of sexual molestation remain screwed up for life. Relationship issues and even criminal issues are just a couple of the results of molestation).
Again, as I have written before, how any gay man or woman can remain faithful to the Catholic Church is beyond my comprehension. Even the scriptures say there are a variety of ministries, all of which proclaim faith in God. The Catholic Church is not the only way to practice one’s faith as so many Catholics seem to think.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Bush To Appear On "Dancing With The Stars"

Read all about it....


Some people can make a party out of any situation!

The Last Photo I Ever Took

Not exactly sure where these came from,
but I can assure you I did not take them....
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Tired of Campaign Ads Yet?

Anyone else sick and tired of hearing or seeing campaign ads yet? I have been for weeks now. No matter what tv or radio station I put on, the ads are there. An ad plays for Joe Blow, saying what he is in favor of or how much his opponent will destroy you, then either the next ad, or a couple minutes later, there's the ad for Sam Sucks, refuting what was just said about him and telling you Joe Blow will make your life miserable. And every ad is so exaggerated and full of mistruths (I won't call them lies). I really believe most people just tune these ads out anyway, so I really don't know why candidates spend so much money on them.
Every Sunday, The Press of Atlantic City has been examining the commercials of candidates to explain the accuracy of the ads. It is interesting to see what is really truth and what is exaggeration. One example given is that one candidate for governor voted a gizzilion times (now I'm exaggerating) to raise taxes on the lower class. True? Not totally, but everytime the candidate in question voted for the Bush tax cuts, this was considered a vote to raise taxes for the lower-middle class. So, not completely accurate, but stretched truth.
With all the talk of campaign reform, I think there needs to be discussion about limiting campaign ads. They start way too early. There is no reason I have to start hearing or seeing this nonsense in August, or even earlier. PLEASE! At least let me wait until October to begin being bombarded. And maybe limits on the number of ads per day per station should be considered. Every 5 minutes is entirely too much to have to be tortured.
I really don't want to, nor do I think I'd really be able to, turn off my radio and tv the entire campaign season, but sometimes I really feel like doing just that!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

What God Really Said To Bush

See what Mark Morford of the San Francisco Chronicle thinks God really said to Bush......

Another Theocracy In The Making?

NO.........I am not talking about Iraq, but the good ol' US of A. Bush's new supreme court justice nominee, Harriet Miers was selected based on her religious beliefs. A great qualification for supreme court justice, being a good conservative religious fanatic. Is the US becoming more and more like Islamic countries? Are we really headed toward a Christian v. Islamic worldwide fight as well as one here? BUSH NEEDS TO BE STOPPED! This is getting more and more ridiculous the longer his reign continues.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Donovan: Go Get Your Surgery!

My advice to Donovan McNabb: Go get your sports hernia operation done now. According to McNabb, there is a small tear in the lower abdomen which will definitely have to be repaired with surgery. When asked by Terry Bradshaw on Fox NFL Pre-game show, McNabb said if he had the surgery done now, he would be out for 4-6 weeks. Well, Donovan, you're not helping the team any right now, and if by some chance the Eagles do make it into the playoffs, don't you think you should be healthy then? It is quite obvious after yesterday's thrashing by the Dallas Cowgirls(boys), that McNabb's injury is not as easy to live with as he proclaims. Sure, the Eagles made a fantastic comeback against the Kansas City Chiefs, but that scenario is not going to play out every week to get the Eagles into the playoffs. Superbowl teams do not have comebacks each and every week. Superbowl teams do not squeak through victories. Superbowl teams are consistent week after week after week. And McNabb cannot do this as long as he has this hernia. So, my advice, for what it's worth, is that McNabb leave now and get his hernia repaired. Then, if/when the Eagles make the playoffs, McNabb will be at his best game.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Another Marine's Story

Iraq vet, Jimmy Massey, has a new book out, "Kill, Kill, Kill." In the book, Massey, a former staff sargeant, explains why the US faces such bloody insurgency in Iraq, and he discusses some of the atrocities the US has committed. Massey contends that US military training has created troops so desensitised to violence that battleground brutality in Iraq is rampant -- and has helped fuel the bloody insurgency seen there today. Massey says that the daily attacks against US troops are occurring "because of the brutality that the Iraqi people saw at the start of the invasion." According to Massey, US troops, including Massey and other Marines, killed dozens of unarmed Iraqi civilians because of an exaggerated sense of threat, and that they often experienced sexual-type thrills doing so. Of course a Pentagon spokeswoman said that Massey's allegations had been investigated and found to be unsubstantiated. Is Massey another voice of opposition that the Bush Administration will try to make out to be a total idiot? It's quite amazing how many people leave the Bush Administration, or how many soldiers leave the military, serving this country in a commendable manner, then all of a sudden they're blooming morons.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

A New Enemy of Mine

My dear religious-fanatic grandmother sent me an e-mail like she does quite often, but this one pissed me off like no other. It was a daily devotional from “, owned, operated, and run by Bill Keller. Keller, as the biography on his website states, “was raised in the United Methodist Church and asked Jesus Christ into his heart at age 12, feeling a call of God into the ministry at a young age. Bill's life became sidetracked while attending Ohio State when he started a small business that became very successful. Going into the ministry soon was not in the plan as Bill spent the next 11 years running from God.” Keller became involved in insider trading and was convicted and spent 2 ½ years in federal prison. And then, “Shortly after going into prison, Bill rededicated his life to the Lord, received an undergraduate degree in biblical studies from Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, and was discipled by two precious charismatic couples. Upon his release in August of 1992, Bill went into full time ministry, holding evangelistic meetings in churches all over the country.” My own opinion, Keller found a way to make money. If you go to his website, he is constantly asking for money, money, money. Now back to what pissed me off.
The devotional my grandmother sent me started off with: “The "gay lie" being told to YOUR children. On the Liveprayer TV program, I often get calls from viewers who start out by saying, "I am a homosexual."Whenever that happens, I immediately jump in before I allow them to continue to correct them. I point out the fact that there is no such thing as a homosexual, only a homosexual act. There are people who CHOOSE to have sex with people of the same sex, but that is a sexual act, not what a person is.I have to admit, the saddest calls like this are from young men and women,clearly in their teens, calling up and claiming to be "gay" or "lesbian."” Keller goes on to state: “The purpose of this Devotional today is to warn those who are not aware towhat extent the pro-homosexual agenda is being fulfilled and to hopefully wake up the bloated, weak, and apathetic church that has to bear much of the responsibility for the moral decay of our culture. The goal of those who have chosen the homosexual lifestyle is to justify their sinful choice that is inherently destructive both to society and themselves. They are trying to force society to validate legally and ethically their choice of sexual behavior and relationships, and to enact laws that allow them to promote this sinful choice to our children as normal, even desirable behavior.”
Piss you off too? I sure hope so! Here is this man who never even graduated college professing to know what being gay is all about! A man, who was a business major, not a biologist or scientist, telling his audience that there is no such thing as a homosexual, only homosexual behavior, which of course, is a S-I-N! And then the distortions he preaches to his audience are outrageous!
The sad thing about it all: there are people like my grandmother who believe this
S-H-I-T! From a man who claims to be a man of God, but more than likely is a man of self, making a living off lies and using others!

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Civil Unions For Gay Couples Begin In Connecticut

Gay couples like Edward Rivera and Pablo Santiago, Hartford, Connecticut, have begun to receive their Civil Union licenses in the State of Connecticut. Connecticut became the first state to legalize civil unions without being forced by the courts after lawmakers passed a law endorsing the unions in April. Massachusetts allows gay marriages and Vermont recognizes civil unions because of lawsuits. Connecticut law affords all the legal rights of marriage — such as spousal health care benefits — to same-sex couples, but defines marriage as between a man and a woman. It's a start. Hopefully, more and more states will at least legalize civil unions for gay couples. And then, marriage. In California, the state legislature passed a law making gay marriage legal, but it is Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed the law on Thursday. The Republican governor had earlier this month indicated he would veto the bill passed by California's Democrat-led legislature. The bill was the first of its kind approved by a state legislature. Schwarzenegger said he would leave the contentious issue of same-sex marriage to voters and the courts. In NJ, a court case was heard to allow gay marriage. In June, a New Jersey appeals court ruled that the state constitution does not require the recognition of same-sex marriage. The court, in a split decision, said that it is up to the legislature to change marriage laws if same-sex couples are to wed in the Garden State. However, one of the plaintiffs died Wednesday, and will never realize her life's dream. How many more will die in these United States without ever realizing full civil rights?!

Bush "Encouraged" With Progress In Iraq

I am glad George Bush is "encouraged" by the progress with Iraqi security forces trained by US forces. "I'm encouraged by the increasing size and capability of the Iraqi security forces. Today they have more than 100 battalions operating throughout the country, and our commanders report that the Iraqi forces are serving with increasing effectiveness," Bush said in his weekly radio address. America should be so relieved by Bush's encouragement, even though his top generals in the field may not agree. During congressional testimony on Thursday, Gen. George Casey, top U.S. commander in Iraq, and Gen. John Abizaid, top U.S. commander in the Middle East, said the number of such battalions had dropped since July to one from three, out of the roughly 100 Iraqi battalions. If Iraqi security forces are doing so well, why is another US led offensive taking place in Anbar? Where are the Iraqi security forces? And will this offensive end as other US led offensives, with the insurgents recapturing the area once the US troops leave because the Iraqi security forces cannot keep the insurgents out? Here Bush goes again, speaking just the opposite of what his generals are saying. Remember when top military staff said troops did not have sufficient weapons? Bush straightened them out by informing them that they most certainly had the very best equipment possible. But then again, remember when Bush said Iraq had WMD? Remember when Bush said Iraq had a direct relationship to 9-11? Again, Bush continues to distort the truth...isn't that lying? But it will probably be the last we here about the lack of Iraqi trained security forces, because generals like Casey and Abizaid will be told to shut up. I can only hope the press and the American people don't head the president's advice. I do believe people are truly, finally getting fed up with the Bush truth distortions!

Logo Is On!

Logo TV, the new gay television channel created by MTV, is now on Comcast. In my area it is Channel 163. Even though it's a bit "adolescent", it has some informative and interesting info, especially about gay travel. Some of the documentaries on the gay rights movement and gay life look to be interesting. Check it out! (And don't forget, HERE TV, another gay network, is also on Comcast.OnDemand, in the "movie" section. However, there is a $3.99 charge per show).

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Remember This?

It's been so hot and humid this summer, and the warm weather has continued until now, the end of September, that it is very easy to forget that winter will be here soon. Tonight may be the first night in a long time that the temperature has gone below 50 degrees. To be honest, I do not like the real cold winter, but I am so tired of the heat and humidity, that I am actually looking forward to a time like the one in the photo taken from my balcony. Bring it on, Old Man Winter!

Demand A Strategy For Iraq

Please join Senator Barbara Boxer in demanding that George Bush develop a strategy to bring our troops home from Iraq. Then contact your Congressman and demand the same thing. Together we can demand an end to the stalemate in Iraq.

More Karl's New Rules

More of Karl's New Rules:

New Rule #4: The only Hummer that should be on the road is the one happening in a
normal size vehicle! Any vehicle that is capable of running over another
should be reserved for use in the desert of Iraq or any other battle field, not
a city or state highway.

New Rule #5: To be politically correct, the BET will now be called the AAET. And, I
am no longer "Caucasian" but "European-American." But then why do we
have to label anyone?

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Support For The War?

About 400 people joined together in Washington, DC to show support to the war in Iraq. This was in contrast to the hundreds of thousands that gathered yesterday to protest the war and speak out against the Bush Administration. Of course, Cindy Sheehan was a big topic of discussion at the pro-war rally. One sign on the mall read "Cindy Sheehan doesn't speak for me" and another "Arrest the traitors"; it listed Sheehan's name first among several people who have spoken against the war. As for me? Cindy Sheehan DOES SPEAK FOR ME! How about you?

The EVIL Catholic Church's History

Today’s Philadelphia Inquirer (Sunday, September 25, 2005) contained a front page story about the recent scathing grand jury report incriminating priests, and providing evidence of cover up by many high ranking officials The jist of the article , called Faith strong despite scandal, was that “Area Catholics are angry, but some call the idea of leaving the church unfathomable.” Many Catholics, the article stated, are disappointed, and even mad, but with a faith in God that is still strong, many would never think of leaving the Catholic Church.
I’ve got news for the many Catholics in the world.
The Catholic Church, not to mention other churches as well, has had scandal and blood on its hand since its beginning. This recent sex abuse scandal is just another in a long line of embarrassing and illegal atrocities of men who call themselves Christian, and “men of God.”
Remember the
Crusades? Remember the Inquisition? Remember the silence and even support of Hitler? Remember the many peoples conquered by the Catholic Church in the name of God? And now, think of the many children abused by the Catholic Church.
I do not understand how a “strong faith in God” equates to support of the Catholic Church, or any church that commits such heinous atrocities. God is God. He is not any one denomination or man-made institution. I have to say I know my Bible pretty well, but tell me where it says that God is the Catholic Church? Where is this “once a Catholic, always a Catholic” thing written? The God I believe in doesn’t require me to belong to any particular church group.
Would a God-fearing Christian continue to hold fast to any other organization that conducted illegal activity? If one belonged to a civic organization that decided to engage in criminal activity to increase its budget, would one think twice about leaving that organization? If a group a God-fearing Christian belonged to had several members committing sexual abuse, would that group still be supported?

Saturday, September 24, 2005

A Tale Of Two Mourning Mothers, One Against The War, The Other In Denial

Two mothers, Diane Ibbotson and H. Elaine Johnson, who have lost sons in Iraq, will be at the Peace Demonstrations in Washington today. Johnson, will protest the war, while Ibbotson will speak out in support of the military action. “There are families who lose children in accidents, in tragic illnesses. Young people die and it seems without a purpose,” said Ibbotson, whose son was 21. “My son gave his life for a cause that he believed in. He fought and died for God and country.” I only hope that when Ms. Ibbotson finally comes to the realization that this war was just a farse, a political move of George Bush, that she will be able to hold it together like she has so far. One of the first stages of grieving is denial. I am afraid that Ms. Ibbotson is still in that stage, trying to explain her son's death by rationalizing the war as just. I hear so many times people of soldiers killed in Iraq saying they died for our freedom, for God and country. I respect those opinions, and I respect the soldiers for doing the job they signed up for, but I am sorry to say nobody in Iraq has died for my freedom. That may sound harsh, but I was just as free before Iraq and I would have been just as free if the US never invaded Iraq. Organizers of today’s anti-war protest predict about 100,000 people will crowd the Ellipse near the White House for a rally and march. Among those expected are Cindy Sheehan, the California mother who drew thousands of protesters to her 26-day vigil outside President Bush’s Texas ranch last month. I applaud all who will be there protesting, whichever "side" they're on.

Friday, September 23, 2005


Wassupp.....Watch it if you can handle it!

Need A "Clinton" or "Lewinsky"?

A rubber company in China has begun marketing condoms under the brand names Clinton and Lewinsky. The Guangzhou Rubber Company began handing out 100,000 free Clinton and Lewinsky condoms as a promotion. According to Liu Wenhua, spokesman for the company, "The Clinton condom will be the top of our line....The Lewinsky condom is not quite as good." The company chose the names because most Chinese consumers viewed former president Bill Clinton as a responsible person who would want to stress safe sex as a means to prevent the spread of HIV. When will the Clinton and Lewinsky make their way to the US?

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Karl's New Rules

Bill Maher, on his HBO show, Real Time With Bill Maher, has his "New Rules". I have decided it's time for Karl's New Rules. So, every now and again, you will be honored to see what new rules I would like to see instituted. So I begin:

New Rule #1: Unless you have a penis, you will not be allowed to drive an SUV. There is
nothing more dangerous than a woman driving an SUV! I have been almost
run over by too many to count!

New Rule #2: Being fat should not be a reason to get handicapped license plates. Maybe
if these slobs walked a little bit further to the front door of the store, they
wouldn't be so damn fat!

New Rule #3: Grocery shopping should not be a family outing! Mom, Dad, and the 2 or 3
kids do not all need to go on the weekly grocery shopping outing. Mom or Dad, stay home with
the kids. And whoever created those god-awful shopping carts with little cars attached for the kids to play in, should be shot!

More Karl's New Rules to come.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

It Wasn't Ellen...It's God's Punishment Of The Red States

Well, look out! God is getting ready to punish another "red" state, Texas? That is how I explain the current hurricanes, Katrina and now Rita. It's as good an explaination as Pat Robertson can give. Robertson said Katrina was God's punishment for Ellen Degeneres being the host of the Emmy Awards. “By choosing an avowed lesbian for this national event, these Hollywood elites have clearly invited God’s wrath,” Robertson said on “The 700 Club” on Sunday. “Is it any surprise that the Almighty chose to strike at Miss Degeneres’ hometown?” Robertson also noted that the last time Degeneres hosted the Emmys, in 2001, the September 11 terrorism attacks took place shortly before the ceremony. Earlier, Repent America, the anti-gay, conservative christian organization, blamed Katrina on the "Southern Decadence" gay celebration slated a few days after Katrina hit. Come on! God didnt' cause Katrina to punish anyone! What about when a natural disaster hits a town in the bible belt of America? Did God cause that too?

Let's Hear It For The (Catholic) Church!

WOW!!! What a report! I am talking about the grand jury probe investigating the Philadelphia Archdiocese. The report stated that leaders of the Philadelphia Archdiocese -- including two former Cardinals -- actively concealed sexual abuse by priests for decades. However, no charges can be brought against the church because of statute of limitation laws in PA. The Catholic Church's response, of course, is that the investigation was one-sided and anti-Catholic. Didn't Jesus say, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone"? Catholic Church...stop telling me how to live! Thank you! How anybody can be proud to call themselves a catholic is beyond my comprehension.

Baylor Bans Starbuck Coffee Gay Quote. What's The Big Deal?

Most of you probably have heard or read by now that Baylor University, Texas, has decided to NOT allow Starbucks coffee cups with a quote from Armistead Maupin, a gay writer, to be sold on campus. The quote from Maupin that is on the coffee cups is, "My only regret about being gay is that I repressed it for so long. I surrendered my youth to the people I feared when I could have been out there loving someone. Don't make that mistake yourself. Life's too damn short." The decision by Baylor is causing an uproar by gays all over America. To me, a gay man who also gets disgusted by all the anti-gay propaganda and actions in this country, it's no big deal. Baylor University is afterall, a Baptist university. It is a private institution. It can make its on choice on what it wants to sell on campus or not. If this were a public institution I may feel differently. If Starbucks itself said they were not going to allow any of the cups with Maupin's quote on it to be sold, I would be upset. My first thought about the whole issue was, "just boycott Starbucks!" But, it really isn't Starbucks fault either. If the people who attend Baylor aren't that upset with the university's decision, and I am not sure what the overall feeling is there, then I'm not going to upset with it either. I am not attending Baylor. But if the students/professors on Baylor's campus are that angry at the decision, then they need to do something. It is their decision to be at Baylor, and only their actions that can change the university's policy.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Falwell In Favor of Gay Rights?

The Reverend Jerry Falwell, conservative televangelist and founder of the Moral Majority and Liberty University, supports full civil rights for gay individuals. Yes! That is correct. And the Human Rights Campaign has formally thanked Falwell for publically speaking out in favor of gay rights. “I may not agree with the lifestyle,” Falwell said. “But that has nothing to do with the civil rights of that… part of our constituency.... Civil rights for all Americans, black, white, red, yellow, the rich, poor, young, old, gay, straight, et cetera, is not a liberal or conservative value,” Falwell went on to say. “It’s an American value that I would think that we pretty much all agree on.” Joe Solmonese, president of the HRC said, “Like most Americans, it seems Rev. Falwell has reached the conclusion that everyone deserves basic rights.... I hope he also supports legislation that would deliver on these values.” We shall see what Falwell says and does in the future in supporting gay rights.

Karl Rove At It Again?

Is Karl Rove throwing his weight around again? Seems he personally called the Texas secretary of state about a newspaper story quoting a staff lawyer about whether of not Rove was eligible to vote in Texas. The lawyer, Elizabeth Reyes, 30, was subsequently fired. Roger Williams, Secretary of State in Texas, said he decided to fire Reyes after discussing the situation with Rove, but Williams insists Rove did not ask that the Reyes be removed. According to Reyes, she was answering a hypothetical question about eligibility to vote in Texas by the Washington Post 3 days earlier, in which Rove’s name was never mentioned. Even the Post acknowledged that Rove’s name was never mentioned. Reyes was supposedly fired for violating an agency policy against talking to the media. In Texas, state employees can be fired at will. (Thank God I work in NJ where we have due process, not to mention a relatively strong union).
Apparently there is some question as to whether or not Rove meets the eligibility criteria to vote in Texas. An individual only needs to own property in Texas to be able to vote. Rove sold his home in Austin, but claims that 2 bed-and-breakfast cottages make him eligible to vote.
Hey! I believe Rove had nothing to do with the firing of Elizabeth Reyes. After all, the WMD existed, didn’t they? Well, how about the link between Iraq and 9-11? And George Bush, the puppet for Rove, is a great, well good president, isn’t he?

OUCH! Take That, You Bastard Rapists!

Sonnet Ehlers has developed a controversial device designed to decrease the problem of rape in South Africa and for women everywhere. The device nicknamed the "Rape Trap," is a condom-like device bristling with internal hooks designed to snare rapists during penetration. The device is inserted inside a woman's body, and it would hook onto the rapist and have to be surgically removed. It disables the rapist immediately, allowing the victim to escape, but the device does no permanent damage to the assailant, and it would not hurt the woman in anyway. Women would have to treat the device as any other safety device, making it part of
any daily security routine. I am sure my good friend Medbh would think very highly of the device. I have to agree it would make quite an impact!