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Archive → January, 2010

My position is unique, so I may be MORE pissed!!

First, the background.

Those who have known me for a while know that I am a huge fan of the University of Southern California.  I have travelled thousands of miles to get to many USC games.  I even obtained a student ID back in 1993 so that I could get season tickets at the student rates.  This loyal is due to my older brother who gave me t-shirts and sweatshirt as gifts going back to 1987.

For now, that support goes on hold.

I am an alumnus of the University of Tennessee.  I am a proud Tennessee Volunteer.  Ten years ago this week, I enrolled in my first classes at UT.  My support of the Volunteers goes back to my first game in 1997, homecoming against Southern Mississippi.

I yelled and screamed in my townhouse on 4 January 1999 when the Vols beat Florida State for the National Championship.

I covered the Vols from 2001 until 2006, so I developed a skeptical eye regarding the program.  But I always loved my alma mater.  Some questioned who I would support between USC and Tennessee.  I always answered the Vols.

Now, more than ever, I am absolutely in support of the Vols.

I almost became a convert to Lane Kiffin.  I liked some of the brash words.  But I never fully converted over to him. 

I think that Lane Kiffin is lower than a mussel. 

You see, a mussel is the lowest form of life on earth.  It trolls along the bottom of the ocean and eats whale shit.

USC was my number two school.  Now, they are simply number two.

Until Mike Garrett, a man who really needed a better helmet during his playing days, and Lane Kiffin leave USC, I will root against them on occasion.  I hate to root for failure, but with those two jokers in charge, I have to.

What I do know is this.  Mike Hamilton is a good and decent man who will find a great new football coach for the Vols.  I hate that he has so little time to do this right.

Finally, I know that Lane Kiffin is not worthy to walk the same ground as Pat Summitt and Bruce Pearl.

But he also isn’t worthy of walking the same sidelines as Howard Jones, John McKay and even Pete Carroll.

What do YOU make of this? What is the point?

The paranoid among us want to read “Martial Law” into this.


The Executive Order itself.


I hope the paranoids are wrong.

But as I have said before, it is not liberals that scare me.  They just know so much that isn’t so.  It is the “Progressives” who scare the hell out of me.  President Obama is one, or is having his puppet strings pulled by them.  They want you and I to be dependent on a government that they control.

Is this a step toward that, under the guise of looking out to protect the people?  Maybe, because we all know how effective more layers of bureaucracy is in protecting the American people.

Again, I hope the paranoids are wrong.  But I am not so sure.  President Obama MAY just be out to get us.

Got to go.  Some men in suits are knocking on my front door.

NBC screwed EVERYTHING up.

First, Jay Leno hinted a retirement several years ago.  So, NBC promised “The Tonight Show” to Conan O’Brien.

Ooops.  When Leno decided that he would fail retirement, NBC painted themselves into a corner.

No matter what your feelings are about either Mr. Leno or Mr. O’Brien, you have to realize that it was NBC who screwed this up.

Due to this mess, NBC HAD to give O’Brien “The Tonight Show” despite the fact that the ratings were dominant with Jay Leno at the helm.  And they had been for sometime.  Going back to a certain appearance by a client of Divine Brown.

Next, NBC exacerbates the situation.  In order to keep Jay Leno from going to another network, they give him a prime time show. 

I do not think this was a bad idea.  BUT it was executed poorly.  And that is probably an understatement.

Here is why.  For DECADES, network television ran dramas in the 10E/9C time slot.  NBC sought to make a fundamental change to television viewing habits.

How do you change something that has been in place for three generations?

I do not know the answer, but I think a much more aggressive promotional campaign would have been one thing.  Have Jay Leno do his show in front of live audiences in cities all around the country.  Build up local hype by partnering with the affiliates.  Do you NOT think that Jay Leno could fill theatres for the taping of his TV shows?  As for travelling, Leno does stand up STILL.  He is already on the road on weekends.

That might have helped make the show a success.

Now, NBC has a choice to make.  Keep Conan O’Brien in the chair that has been filled by Steve Allen, Jack Paar, Johnny Carson and Jay Leno as they promised him back in 2005, or go back to Jay Leno and hope that Conan O’Brien doesn’t end up somewhere else.  If they stick with Conan O’Brien, and they should in my opinion (not because I am a fan, but for continuity reasons), I think Jay Leno could be picked up by the Fox Network. 

Now, think about that.  Fox does not run network programming in the 10E/9C hour.  And they should NOT put Jay Leno there IF they hire him.  Rather, offer up Jay Leno at 11E/10C up against local news.  I would have Jay Leno open the show with his monologue, then at the first break, about ten minutes in, have a local news update from the Fox affiliate if they choose that could be covered up with something by Fox News or Fox Business.  Remember, many Fox affilates run news at 10E/9C and some continue into the 11E/10C hour. 

Doing that, Fox would kick NBC’s ass.  And for that matter, CBS and David Letterman.

Just a few thoughts on this topic.  How do you see it?

Why I don’t like “American IDull”?

To explain why I do not like “American IDull” you have to understand something about history.  But first, the show itself.

I think the show itself is intended to be a shortcut for those who are unwilling to make a sacrifice to get what they want in life. 

There, I said it.  I took the harder path and failed.  But I tried.  Several times.  Back when I really set my mind to working in talk radio, I scraped an clawed to get the opportunities to try.  I worked the odd weekend hours.  I begged for the opportunity.  I then got paid for it, after doing it on a pseudo-voluntary basis.  I then worked to wedge my way in to a chance to host drive time shows.  I argued that my willingness to do the other stuff should give me a priority over those who wanted to do it on a whim, or an ego stroke.  I worked at it, when given the chance.  Hell, I probably irritated the producers a bit with my intensity when I was schedule for those opportunities, but they did seem to appreciate the seriousness that I put in to the role.

I felt that I earned my shots and that I earned my times.  I felt that I paid my dues while others did not.

And the feed back that I heard, directly and indirectly, was that it paid off.  My work was preferred to those who just filled a seat.

Then I had to find my own place.  I knew what I wanted to do, who I wanted to be, but the opportunity to do that was not going to there in Knoxville for me.  I hated that, but it was a reality.  I had to leave a place that I considered home, my adopted hometown really, if I wanted to pursue this career.

So, I came to Jefferson City and for two years, one month and one week, I did it.  I only got out because of a bad business decision by my former employer.  During my time with them, I often told people that I liked my job, liked who I worked with and for directly, but that I had little to no faith in the company.  I hated being right.

BUT, my point is that I worked to get this opportunity.

In “American IDull” the only risk, the only work, the only chance, is to go to a place where you try out and see how you do.

I have done the exact same thing with a skill and talent that I have.  I have three times, taking four tests total, tried out for “Who Wants To Be a Millionaire?”  Two of those times, I passed the tests…three tests total.  But, I didn’t make the cut.  I figure that they hit their quota on overweight thirtysomething white guys.

But, that was my “American IDull” try-out moment.

That is why I do not respect the winners and runners-up no matter how talented they are.

They didn’t go to the Sunset Strip, or Nashville, or New York to break out.

They found the short cut.

If I won a million dollars on “Millionaire” would you respect me as a talk show host?  I doubt it and I wouldn’t expect it.

THAT is just one reason.

The other is that it is a prime example of “Bread and Circuses” for the American people.  I know that “Bread and Circuses” can mean a couple of different things, but both essentially hit the same result.  And that is to distract the public from what SHOULD be important to them as a citizen of this ONCE fine nation.

“American IDull” and its ilk in the so-called, but incorrectly named, reality genre are doing  just that.  And many of the mind numbed zombies, and you may be one of them (if so, wake up), defend this position with by using the old, and TERRIBLY incorrect, statement about discussing politics and religion in polite conversation.

HEY!!  WAKE UP!!  Not discussing, not understanding the bastardization of a religion, in this case, Islam, has led many to not getting that these folks want us dead.  Not all followers of Islam, but a large sector of that faith.

Thomas Jefferson acquired a copy of the Quran for the purpose of learning about that religion.  Why?  Because Islam was a threat to our national sovereignty back in the 1790′s and early 19th Century.   [Later, Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison used this Quran for taking his oath of office, bastardizing why Jefferson had it in the first place for his own purposes.....and the willing, lazy media didn't challenge him.  They won't challenge a liberal, but we know this already.]

Discuss religion and politics in a polite conversation.  Do not raise your voice, which I have a hard time with, and do not insult the person.  But if their beliefs are messed up, explain to them why. 

This will require a bit of effort on your part.  But it can be done.  Most admittedly “liberal” people might see the error on their views if they have a grasp on concepts like hard work and logic.  If they don’t, remember that you can’t fix stupid and politely move on.

As for religion, it is a fascinating topic.  When I went back to the Roman Catholic Church in 2001, learned a lot from the priests, deacon and bishop who met with us.  BUT, I learned a lot more from those who converted to Catholicism
from other faiths.  These discussions were fascinating. 

I have a very good friend who is Jewish and I have learned a lot about his faith during our years of friendship.  I have known many Muslims, but sadly never got very close to any of them to have enlightening conversation about their faith.  I hope to someday have a friend who happens to be Muslim, for this very selfish reason.

So, these are the reasons that I think “American IDull” is bad for people.  It rots your brain, it gives the people on the show a short cut to success but most importantly, it seves as a distraction to the people.  “Bread and circuses”…..understand?

Remember where “Bread and Circuses” originated?  It was the Roman Empire.  It was a governmental policy to keep the people happy with distractions.  Giving them everything they want, but little of what they need.

See a parallel with the current Federal Government of the United States?

So, if you ask ME about IDull and I roll my eyes at you, know why. 

Respect is hard to earn, but easy to lose.  AI should stand for Artificial Intelligence and not the means for people hemorraging IQ points.

Please excuse any ambiguity in this post.

THIS is what being a TEAM means.

2010 started badly for the University of Tennessee Volunteers Men’s Basketball team.  Very badly.

Four players, whose names are NOT worthy of a mention here, were arrested in a rental car with marijuana and guns on them.  All were suspended, one was later completely dismissed.

Another troubled player left school in the fall.  Emmanuel Negedu suffered cardiac arrest in September.  He survived, but is unable to play basketball this season, if ever.  The Volunteers wear a patch with an “E” on their uniforms.

Depleted. That is one word to describe the Vols roster.

In their first game with this depleted roster, the Vols faced Charlottle, aka UNC-Charlotte.  Charlotte is a regional state school of little significance in most circles, not just athletic, but even academic.  Not exactly a peach of a school.  But, if you know the recent history, Charlotte beat the Vols in 3 of their last four meetings.  Charlotte ended the Vols season in 2001 in the NCAA tournament, the last game of Jerry Green’s tenure at Tennessee. 

Maybe we should be thankful to the 49ers for that.

Anyhow, Charlotte is a big nothing.  But, they fought hard and kept things reasonably close before the Vols put them away on 6 January 2010, 88-71 at Thompson-Boling Arena.

That gave the Vols and their fans some confidence.  But it was a cautious confidence.  How confident should a team be when they have just SIX scholarship players?

Add to the mix the next opponent for the Volunteers, the Number One ranked Kansas Jayhawks were coming to Thompson-Boling Arena for the first time.  In fact, this was the first time that a Number One ranked team, on the Men’s side, had come to TBA.

Six scholarship players and three walk-ons were all that Bruce Pearl had available to him.  At least two of those walk-ons could have played on scholarship at lesser schools, Skylar McBee and Steven Pearl.

Well, the mighty Jayhawks came to Knoxville.  Their previous game was not exactly stellar, but a win was a win.  They were undefeated, one of three schools to still hold that distinction. 

In case this is not clear to those who know me, I really like the Kansas Jayhawks and have for many years.  My brother Dan is a Kansas alum and he and his friends all seem to be good folks.  And we had a BLAST at Allen Fieldhouse on 3 January 2009, even though the Vols lost.

I will not bore you with the details of the game.  The bottom line is that the Vols won, buoyed by a late 3 point shot by Skylar McBee…..a shot that he will will be telling his great-grandchildren about, if others don’t already beat him to that.  Vols won 76-68.

This was the biggest home win in over 40 years.  The following link is to a video of Coach Pearl and the Vols in the locker room after the game.  If you want to skip to the end, fine, but Bruce has a lot of good stuff in the middle.  Listen to the last thing the players say before breaking up the meeting.


This is playing for the name on the front of the jersey means.  I hope those nine young men can stay healthy, stay focused and accomplish all that they can this season.

That is the best punishment, aside from the Criminal Justice System, those four idiot thugs could get.  Good riddence to them.

It is great, especially with the example of these nine young men, to be a Tennessee Vol.  Thank you for making me so proud, so soon.

Our Nation’s TOP Priority… du jour

Just an observation.  Has anyone else noticed that our “Nation’s Top Priority” changes on a daily basis?

It is health insurance.

It is terrorism.

It is unemployment.

It is our crumbling infrastructure.

It is, and this depends on who you ask, something different almost every day.

Our Nation’s Top Priority has to be consistent, folks.  Really, it cannot be a moving target.

By the way, today is the 46th Anniversary of the start of the “War on Poverty” as declared by President Lyndon Baines Johnson.


And people BITCH about the “War on Drugs” and the “War on Terror” taking forever.

Our Nation’s Top Priority ought to be a “War on Ignorance”…..but that would prevent “them” from keeping us in the dark.

Or at least trying to.

So….um, didn’t help with Aerodynamics?

Athletes do go to extremes to give themselves a competitive edge.  Ben Johnson, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Lyle Alzado, Brian Bosworth and others may come to mind for their use,  or alleged use, of steroids.

This is different.


Uh, OK.

A Marine seeks cover, but NOT the way you’d think

And no, you do not need to be a criminal to go there any more.


Take camera when visiting Australia.  Got it.


Limited resources to blame for….well, everything.

In my earlier post, I made a comment about the cause of all wars, in its simplist form, is limited resources.  We have them, you don’t, you attack us to get them, we (hopefully) fight back.

Same thing with robberies and burglaries.

And limited resources is the reason that socialism and communism do not work.

My solution is unlimited resources.

Yeah, easy enough.

Lets look at the world of science fiction.  Specifically, look at “Star Trek” and the universe created there.  While never seen in the original series, it was highlighted in subsequent series and movies.  The simple device known as “The Replicator” is what solved most of the problems.  Those that weren’t Klingons or Romulans or other alien beings that hated Captains Kirk, Picard, etc. 

The concept was simple, as I understood it (and I have not read through the technical manuals that I have heard actually exist to explain the “science” and “engineering” of such things), “The Replicator” took less valuable matter and converted it into something more desirable.

So finally, you could make chicken salad out of chicken shit….in theory.

It is a scientific truism that matter is not created or destroyed, just changed from one form into another.

There is the solution to war, poverty, etc. 

So, how do we get there?

Accept that it will not happen in our life times, our children’s life times and our grandchildren’s lifetimes.  But, spending on research, publicly and privately, is the key.  That is why I am so supportive of NASA and our several National Laboratories.  And it why I support private research, most if it noticed in the pharmaceutical industry, but also in consumer electronics.

Fusion energy is probably the key to powering any such development.

Who knows what could happen and when?  But if we never try and it if we focus our resources on stupid and ineffective ideas, we never will get there.

Attack the problem.  Because if you solve the problem, the symptoms will go away.

This is a truism that applies in so many other areas as well.

Think about that.  Please.

Hippies, and Neo-Hippies, you are WRONG and HISTORY backs it!

I have nothing against Hippies and their ilk personally.  I really don’t.  But these are the ones who are normally associated with the “War is wrong” and “War is not the Answer” type sloganeering.

Add to this mix the Beauty Queens who hope for “World Peace”…ugh.  Really?

I can appreciate this idealism….. in a TEN YEAR OLD.

But even ten year olds have had some history classes.  And even ten year olds probably realize that this type of idealism will soon leave their ever developing minds.

Lets go back to the Hippies.  The counter-culture of the 1960′s consisted mainly of a bunch of spoiled brats who were insulated from the realites of the world by their well-intentioned parents.  Those parents survived the Great Depression and World War II, for those reasons they did NOT want their children to experience the same things.

Sounds good, but that caused the realities of these spoiled-brat punks not understanding much of anything.

Ronald Reagan pointed out that no conflicts of the 20th Century that the United States was drawn into was due to the United States being too strong.

The other day, I saw that a Facebook friend commented that Woodrow Wilson ruined our nation.  There may be some truth to that…..in fact, a lot of truth.  Wilson and his successors set the disarmament and isolationist tone that followed World War I.  Wilson did try to get us in the “League of Nations” but the Senate wisely refused to let us join.  Too bad that wisdom didn’t keep us out the United Nations, as it was poorly constituted back in 1945.  [Forming a democratic-republican body of nations that includes nations who have no respect for democratic-republican principals was, and still is, idiotic.  Especially in the wake of World War II.]

Any how, back to my thesis.  The 1960′s era hippies and their 21st century counterparts are wrong.

War, while ugly and expensive, is and always has been necessary.  The simple reason why is limited resources.

This is also the reason why socialism and communism do not work.  Limited resources.

The solution is simple.  Unlimited resources!!

Back to that in a bit.  But the Japanese expansion in the 1930′s was due to the need for more natural resources to provide for their people.  The American Civil War was predominiantly about resources, the industrial North had more than the agrarian South (leaving the South more dependent on slavery). 

Talk about it all you want, but sometimes you simply have to go from gold to guns to get what you want.  Is that the best way to handle things idealistically?  No, but it is realistic.

The other slogan “War is not the Answer” is just plain stupid…as are those who say that.  Not to go all “Carnac the Magnificent” here, but you really need to know the question.  If you ask, what is the best way to take out a tyrant who is hell-bent on killing ALL people of a certain religion or ethnicity, I think War is the answer.  I am funny that way.  If the question is, what should be done when your nation is attacked for being wealthy and influential, I think you fight back.  But I am probably just silly.

Hippies, you and your ilk are not respected by me.  You can’t be.  Because you can’t be taken seriously.  Everything you stand for is based on bad, imcomplete or warped information. 

Vietnam was the conflict of your era.  Was THAT war wrong?  Yes, but not for the reasons that you think. 

Had President Truman supported a socialist leaning, but not yet Communist, Ho Chi Mihn after World War II by pushing for an independent South East Asia, rather than a French Indo-China, it all could have been avoided.  And Ho would have been an America allie and supported by the West would likely have kept him from becoming a full-fledged Communist and more like what several countries in Western Europe toyed with after the war.  Sure, it would have pissed off Charles De Gaulle and other French leaders, but did they really deserve to have ANY colonies after they rolled over and played DEAD in 1940?  The whole war would have been avoided.

And the best thing about THAT “what if” is this. 

No hippies.