9:48 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

No doubt, you will be shocked to see this particular article referred to on this site, since I am uniformly considered (even by Mrs. Agnostic) as a dedicated Bush partisan who can admit no faults in the President.

Not so.

Bush’s 10 Mistakes At Home and Abroad

I don't agree with #10, since coming down on Ken Lay would have prejudiced his trial, but the rest are pretty valid.

Pious gratitude to: Instapundit

5:29 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Robert Novak has a great article over at TownHall:

Kerry's myth making

John Kerry in a press conference last week repeated his accusation that Gen. Eric Shinseki was "forced out" as U.S. Army chief of staff because he wanted more troops for Iraq. The trouble is that the Democratic presidential nominee was spreading an urban myth. The bigger trouble is that it was no isolated incident.

Sen. Kerry last week also said the Bush administration may push reinstatement of the military draft, when in fact that idea comes only from anti-war Democrats. At the same time, he said retired Gen. Tommy Franks complained that Iraq was draining troops from Afghanistan, when the truth is he never did. Over a week earlier, Kerry blamed Bush for higher Medicare premiums when in fact they are mandated by law (one that Kerry voted for).

Go read it all.

Pious gratitude to: Kerry Spot

5:18 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Debate Panel Nixes Kerry Campaign Request

Advisers for the Democratic presidential candidate demanded Thursday that the lights signaling when a speaker's time has expired during debates with President Bush (news - web sites) be removed from the lecterns because they are distracting. The commission hosting the debates refused.
Mark Wallace, deputy campaign manager for Bush, said Democrats sought the change "because they don't want the American people to know that Sen. Kerry can't follow the rules."

Expect to hear about this tomorrow: Kerry was "distracted" by evil Bushlights.

4:20 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

4:07 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I feel a great disturbance in the Force.

As if millions of doughnuts suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

Update:  Yes, I know my Photoshop skills are for shit; you don't have to tell me.

12:01 PM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Here's a review of a movie I really want to see!

Because it covers so much ground, it's difficult to sum up this movie in a few paragraphs. But easily the most powerful sequence is a visit with Peter Damon, a soldier who lost both arms in the Iraq war. In a transparent attempt to elicit pity, Moore in Fahrenheit 9/11 included footage (taken from an NBC News report about a new painkiller) of Damon in the hospital while he was recuperating from his grievous wounds.

In MMHA we see a recovered Damon at home with his family, enjoying life, proud of his service. Damon has no patience for those who feel sorry for him. The only anger he feels is at Moore for exploiting him.

Asked by Wilson what he would like to say to Moore, Damon addresses the camera: "I don't want any part of your propaganda. I don't agree with what you're doing."

11:35 AM Sep 30, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Democrat voters in Tennessee put a sign on their lawn

11:04 AM Sep 28, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Christopher Hitchens in Slate:

What will it take to convince these people that this is not a year, or a time, to be dicking around? Americans are patrolling a front line in Afghanistan, where it would be impossible with 10 times the troop strength to protect all potential voters on Oct. 9 from Taliban/al-Qaida murder and sabotage. We are invited to believe that these hard-pressed soldiers of ours take time off to keep Osama Bin Laden in a secret cave, ready to uncork him when they get a call from Karl Rove? For shame.

As Glenn says, a must read.

9:50 PM Sep 27, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

George Bush's nuanced stance on stem-cell research.

Bush followed his core principles to reach a strikingly sophisticated and reasonable compromise that allowed all types of research to continue, even funding the existing embryonic lines for continued research. Those whose principles differ from Bush could make a reasonable rebuttal for unfettered funding of hEsc research, but Kerry doesn’t have the courage to make that argument.

9:38 PM Sep 27, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

No French or German turn on Iraq

French and German government officials say they will not significantly increase military assistance in Iraq even if John Kerry, the Democratic presidential challenger, is elected on November 2.

Reached on the campaign trail, presidential candidate John F. Kerry responded to the news:

"When I said that I would broaden our alliance in Iraq, you didn't think I meant France or Germany, did you? Goodness, what are you guys smoking? Of course, I didn't mean them. Jeeze. Next question."

Pious gratitude to: lgf

9:13 PM Sep 27, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

1:41 PM Sep 27, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Kerry Spot highlights a paragraph from this Newsweek:

The standard rap against Bush is that he was ducking combat by joining the Guard. Actually, the Texas Air Guard had a program called Palace Alert that allowed pilots to volunteer for flight time in Vietnam. Three of Bush's fellow pilots—Udell, Woodfin and Fred Bradley—recalled to NEWSWEEK that Bush inquired with the base commander about signing up for Palace Alert. He was told no; he had too few flying hours at the time and his plane, the F-102, was by then deemed obsolete for air combat.

I seriously doubt that this story will get much play; Bush/Cheney are unlikely to promote it because they aren't interested in Viet Nam, and nobody in the MSM is likely to make much of it, since it seems to indicate that Lt. Bush attempted to volunteer for combat.

However, expect those in the fevered swamps to minimize this by claiming that, obviously, young Bush knew that he was inelligable and that his plane was obsolete, so that he really was in no danger when he made this empty, useless gesture.

Break on through to the other side....

10:25 AM Sep 27, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Hi folks,

Well, we made it through another storm. Every storm is different, as I'm learning. This time, though the wind was much worse in Orlando than with Frances, inexplicably, we didn't lose power or phone at the house, though this locally-hosted web server took a (short) hit.

My in-laws are without power (again) so this time, we're the designated hot-shower and laundry spot for the family.

My heart goes out to all those folks on the east coast who have taken another pounding from Ma Nature. Those poor people, watching their rubble wash into the sea....

We in Orlando were lucky that the storm took so long to turn northwards; on Saturday, they were predicting that Jeanne would come right up the middle of the state, but it didn't. While we didn't get the eye of the storm, we did get sustained hurricane winds for about 12 hours straight, which I can tell you is a nerve-wracking experience. However, having power made all the difference.

The only (additional) damage occurred when a large branch fell out of a neighbor's tree and smashed a bit of fencing. The branch was only about 12 feet long, and I went out in the evening and cut it up with my chainsaw and pulled it out of the driveway.

11:01 PM Sep 25, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

9:55 PM Sep 25, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

How did this get into the New York Times?

5:21 PM Sep 25, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

John Rosenberg discusses an Washington Post "analysis" of political rhetoric:

When the Republicans say the Democrats are undermining the war on terror, they are denounced on the front page (under the fig leaf of "Analysis") as "test[ing] the conventional bounds of political rhetoric." When the Democrats say Bush is undermining the war on terror by his obsession with Iraq, they are ... well, who knows? Milbank and the Post don't say.

Read the rest.

Yom Kippur

5:03 PM Sep 25, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Today is Yom Kippur, a day when observant Jews refrain from, among other things, commerce and watching television.

On the radio yesterday, I heard a spokesman for a local Jewish group expressing concern that some people may not take the steps necessary to prepare for a hurricane out of a feeling of religious obligation.

I hope that everyone sees to their own safety this weekend; and that the distraction of wind and rain doesn't interfere with their devotions.

4:18 PM Sep 25, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

"What a small, graceless man Kerry is."

This, and other opinions, by Mark Steyn here.

Stupid Vs Nuanced

11:48 AM Sep 25, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Mark Noonan reports on a college class exercise to analyze Kerry and Bush speeches and "determine which man got their point across the best."

The results are interesting. Go read about it.

Mark also comments:

People have sometimes jumped on me because I've given out the opinion that President Bush is just the smarter man than John Kerry - I've pointed out endlessly that knowing French and what that little fork is used for doesn't make a person smart...think of it like this: in our movies, very often the villian is a man who has a foreign accent. Very often this super-smart super-villian has a British accent, though sometimes they use a French or other foreign accent. It sounds like the guy is smart, you see? I guess there's something about our American idiom which just doesn't convey intelligence...and, of course, the absolute dumbest sounding Americans are those with a southern accent. John Kerry acts like and talks like a foreigner - and he speaks French! He's just gotta be smart! Meanwhile, over to the right is President Bush mangling his pronunciation in a Texas drawl...to our ever more shallow and ignorant Democrats (becoming more shallow and more ignorant as Democrats with any depth and intellect switch over to being independents or Republicans), its no constest - the guy who speaks French just must be smarter than the guy with the Texas drawl...never mind that this dimwitted Texan has an MBA and was a fighter pilot.

Here we go again!

10:55 AM Sep 25, 2004by Rob Ritchie

It looks like this one will be roaring into Central Florida mid-day on Sunday, with tropical storm winds all day.

We're really getting tired of all this, of course. I don't know what'll happen, but I do know one thing I won't do.

7:07 PM Sep 24, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Victor Davis Hanson on Dan Rather is as scathing as you might expect.

It's deserved, of course, but...damn!

Baby Ducks

11:37 AM Sep 24, 2004by Rob Ritchie

I had this peculiar dream last night about baby ducks; also, my father was the press secretary during the Reagan Administration, and my mother still lived on the White House grounds to this day; and the Secret Service didn't know any of this!. (Jeeze, you'd think they'd do a background check on a guy before they allow him to use their time machine to interview the famous photographer who was, himself, interviewing President Reagan!)

As I said, peculiar.

Go read today's Bleat; at least Lilek's ramblings have a point (usually). In this case, lots of Star-Treky geekyness.

Let's hope not...

10:14 AM Sep 24, 2004by Rob Ritchie

A few good articles

12:14 PM Sep 23, 2004by Rob Ritchie

This op-ed in the NY Post is terrific: Dead Soldiers

Lexington Green discusses Kerry's Desperate Flailing

Update: One more: Liberal Journalists Are From Mars

11:58 AM Sep 23, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Iowahawk has written a terrific piece about Rathergate, which you should go read right now:


It was a slow September night in Manhattan. The kind of sweaty summer night where the mean streets of Gotham run wild with the shadowy scum of the Republican National Convention. The kind of night where mysteries are born. The kind of night I live for.

My name is Rather. And I’m a dick.

9:07 PM Sep 22, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Captain Ed writes that Kerry needs to visit Snopes.com:

First he talked about the Bush adminstration being "the most lying, corrupt" people in his memory. Next he fueled the fire on Bush's National Guard service. In this month alone, he's pushed the discredited memes about stem-cell research bans and the disenfranchisement of one million African-Americans in Florida. Today he ups the ante, again in Florida, where he told supporters that a second Bush administration would result in a renewed military draft

Ed goes on to explore the truth about the Bush Administration's aversion to reinstating the draft, and the fact that it is actually Democrats in Congress that have introduced legislation to bring it back.

Plus, Michelle Malkin writes about an email that's going around.

Kerry to Troops: "You Suck"

6:40 PM Sep 22, 2004by Rob Ritchie

"It's time for America to decide whether they want a leader who smiles all the time and tells us 'our best days are ahead of us' just to stay in power, or one who will happily take a huge crap on national morale just to get into the White House," Kerry told reporters while riding atop a caravan of flag-draped coffins. "If you want a president who isn't afraid to lose a war in order to win the peace, then I'm John Kerry, reporting for duty."

Pious gratitude to: Florida Cracker

1:14 PM Sep 21, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Spoons at Oh, That Liberal Media! writes:

As much fun as we're all having with the CBS story, it's important not to miss what's emerging as an even bigger scandal.

CBS News and the Democratic National Committee staged a coordinated attack against the President

And he points us to this post over at Kerry Spot for proof.

12:31 PM Sep 21, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

From a comment at Daily Kos:

LGF is for mentally-ill sadists who live in the basement of Mom's house in the suburbs and own porn videos that feature the (simulated, hopefully) mutilation of women. It's for teenaged guys who read Soldier of Fortune and fantasize about spending their summers "slithering around on their bellies in Survivalist camps in Idaho." It's for people who wished the Klan was still around and influential, for people who used to like David Duke but hate him now that he's sympathetic to Palestine, for people who thought the Columbine massacre was "a good thing that they wish they had been in on."

Wrong on all counts. It's so nice when the mask of tolerance and deep understanding slips away and you can see their real ugly little selves.

h/t: lgf

It's official

7:12 PM Sep 20, 2004by Rob Ritchie

According to this test, I'm completely normal.


-- Personality Disorder Test - Take It! --

How dull!

h/t: Red

12:28 PM Sep 20, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Steyn on Kerry

So Kerry is now the first self-confessed war criminal in the history of the Republic to be nominated for president. Normally this would be considered an electoral plus only in the more cynical banana republics. But the Democrats seemed to think they could run an anti-war anti-hero as a war hero and nobody would mind. As we now know, a lot of people -- a lot of veterans -- do mind, very much. They understand that, whether or not he ever mowed down civilians with his 50-caliber machinegun, Kerry is responsible for a lot of wounds closer to home

11:48 AM Sep 20, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Why do I continue to assert that Lileks is a minor diety?

Show me someone else that can tastefully bring up Onan while writing about coffeemakers.

This, and more, in today's Bleat.

He's all over the place today.

9:47 AM Sep 20, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

In a trivial display of his mental prowess, Kerry uses his telekinesis to steal a kid's soccer ball.

Born on the side of a hill

4:16 PM Sep 17, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Sheila has a lovely writeup on one of my favorite movies of all time: Bringing Up Baby, with special emphasis on Katherine Hepburn

Kerry Supporters Make Little Girl Cry!

11:07 AM Sep 17, 2004by Rob Ritchie

(Baby Jesus, too!)

Way to go, guys!

via: instapundit

Update: Apparently in moonbat circles a rumor is, uh, circulating that the union guy on the left of the picture holding shreds of the little girl's sign is the son of the father. I heard him interviewed on the Glenn Beck radio program, and he says it isn't. Also, Michelle Malkin has spoken with him as well.

6:50 PM Sep 16, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Michelle Malkin says DON'T GO THERE, W.

I will be voting for Bush--but not because I believe this talking point tripe. It wasn't Kerry who signed into law such behemoth government expansions as the No Child Left Behind Act and the abominable Medicare prescription drug entitlement.

Joke of the Year

4:09 PM Sep 16, 2004by Rob Ritchie

G. W. Bush and John Kerry somehow ended up at the same barbershop. As they sat there, each being worked on by a different barber, not a word was spoken. The barbers were even afraid to start a conversation, for fear it would turn to politics. As the barbers finished their shaves, the one who had Kerry in his chair reached for the aftershave.

Kerry was quick to stop him saying, "No thanks, my wife Theresa will smell that and think I've been in a whorehouse,"

The second barber turned to Bush and said, "How about you?"

Bush replied, "Go ahead, my wife doesn't know what the inside of a whorehouse smells like."

Pious gratitude to: WJR

12:04 PM Sep 16, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Charles Johnson expresses this very well:

The latest excuse/theory/fever dream being floated by various DNC operatives is that the CBS Killian memos may have been planted by Republicans, trying to discredit CBS News and/or the Kerry campaign.

But really. Think about it. You’re the evil Karl Rove, nefarious mastermind behind the Bushitler hegemony. You’ve hatched a diabolical plan to plant forged documents with CBS News and/or the Kerry campaign, to make them look bad when the forgeries are discovered.

Would you, Karl (or one of your diabolical underlings), simply open Microsoft Word and begin typing with the default settings? Print it, crumple it and smooth it out, and fax it to yourself twice, and think that was good enough?

Or would you spend a few dollars at the local thrift store, buy an old typewriter, and type your fake document with it, so that your intended patsy wouldn’t immediately realize what you were up to?

You’d think the evil Karl Rove would have spent a few dollars and a couple of hours to make sure that an especially observant drone at CBS News didn’t immediately recognize documents created with a modern word processor.

How could the evil Karl Rove (or one of his diabolical underlings) have known that CBS News really was that stupid?

11:54 AM Sep 16, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Despite rumors to the contrary, this is not me:

Outside of Local 6 Wednesday, a security camera videotaped a lone protester calling for Dan Rather and CBS to "come clean" on what the sign reads are forged documents.

h/t: Rathergate

11:40 AM Sep 16, 2004

by Rob Ritchie


Can we get rid of "hunker down," please? I know it fits the situation, but ohmigawd, with Charley, and Frances, and now Ivan, it's been beat into the ground. Every time I hear one of the weatherfolk say it, I get this image of that "Larry the cable guy" saying "Hunker down!" in the same way he says "Get 'er done!"

My feelings exactly.

5:30 PM Sep 15, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Floats like a butterfly, stings like a self-inflicted splinter of shrapnel.

Hopeful anecdote

1:37 PM Sep 15, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Yesterday evening I stopped at a corner pizza place to pick up a dinner on the way home, and I was sitting in the small restaurant to wait, when three guys came in to order their own suppers to go.

These guys were soiled from a day's labor, their clothes covered with sawdust. We struck up a conversation as we waited. They were tree-trimmers from Mobile, Alabama, who had come down to Orlando because of all the work available after our run-ins with Charley and Frances. Two of them were about my age, the third seemingly much older. We discussed how sucessful they'd been at finding work, not knowing the area; and also their intentions to go back to Mobile, since Ivan was bearing down on it, as we could see on the television in the waiting area.

The news story changed to Kitty Kelly's new book, and highlighted her allegations that president Bush used cocaine at Camp David during his father's presidency.

Everyone in the room agreed that the story was horseshit; and that Bush was a fine guy and would be reelected.

There's hope for the president when three black entrepreneurs from Mobile, Alabama and white office-worker from Orlando all agree on this.


11:06 AM Sep 15, 2004by Rob Ritchie

One of these two highly-paid celebrities is the anchorman of a popular television show that presents sharply slanted left-liberal stories featuring obviously fake documents and who seems dedicated to the outster of George W. Bush from the White House.

So is the other guy.

12:00 PM Sep 14, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Before you fall for Dems’ spin, here are the facts

Byron York lays them out.

11:11 AM Sep 14, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Some other historical items have come to light.

Fortunate Candidate

10:52 AM Sep 14, 2004by Rob Ritchie

For me, the most infuriating thing about these forged memos is how, despite the fact that they have been revealed as forgeries beyond a shadow of a doubt, they still have done their damage. I continue to hear Democrat defenders (including, I might add, Rather himself) saying, to effect, “Even if these memos are fakes, you still have to pay attention to the story they tell, i.e., that Bush got into the ANG because of family ties in order to sit out the war in a safe spot, and even then he didn’t fulfill his responsibilities.”

Look, I realize that this story predates the production of the forged memos; but these memos were produced specifically as evidence that the story is true. If the evidence is false, then nothing is proved because they become null and void. They mean nothing.

But that doesn’t stop the Donks from brazening on with the story. “Ok, maybe the memos t hat we thought proved it don't really exist, and maybe we don’t really have any other credible evidence to back it up, but we really, really want people to think that we do, so that we can smear Bushitler so that Kerry can become president which is what we really, really want to happen. Did I mention that Kerry was in Viet Nam, while Bush was stateside drinking Mai Tai’s and doing lines of coke off of the asses of hookers? He was! I talked to a guy who said he talked to one of the hookers last week! Honest!”

Hey, some of them say, Kerry is just fighting back with dirty smears of his own, just like he himself was smeared by the “lies” of the Swift Boat Vets. Really? Show me where the issues and accusations raised by the Swifties have been debunked as convincingly as have the “Killian” memos and you might actually get me on your side. But that hasn’t happened; all I see is a press that continually tells us that the Swifties have been debunked, without actually showing that they have been.

And that, my friends, makes Kerry the Fortunate Candidate.

In case you were wondering...

8:06 PM Sep 13, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Actually, I usually wear at least pants....

7:09 PM Sep 13, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Now, go read this.

Welcome SitD Readers!

2:37 PM Sep 13, 2004by Rob Ritchie

The posts to which Mitch refers are here and here.

More advice for potential forgers

1:52 PM Sep 12, 2004by Rob Ritchie

By now we all know how Microsoft word automatically inserts a superscripted "th" when appropriate, for example, when typing "187th"

And, by now, we all also know how the same word processing package will create "smart quotes", i.e., angled quotes around quoted material instead of the straight up-and-down apostrophy.

(BTW, has anybody taken a look at Microsoft's stock price recently? You couldn't ask for better advertising than all these news stories extolling the virtues of their software!)

Anyway, potential Democrat dirty-trick players, here's what you should do next time to circumvent some of these tell-tale features from spoiling your attempt to undermine the American Electorate.

You can turn off both feaures from the AutoCorrect Options menu item. After you have opened Word, but before you begin typing:

Click on Tools / AutoCorrect Options, and then click on the 'AutoFormat As You Type' tab. Uncheck the first two options like so:

It's probably be smart to turn off all of the AutoFormat features, since they are sure-fire indications that you are using a word processesor in 2004, instead of a typewriting machine in 1972, but hey, that's your call.

If you have forgotten to turn off the auto-superscripting feature, you can still circumvent it in the following way.Go ahead and type what you normally would type, as so:


Next, backspace 3 times:


Then, type forward again and magically, Microsoft will, this time, not automically superscript.


You see, with a little practice, even a dirtly little forger like you can create something that doesn't automatically fail to smell test to anyone not blinded by partisan rage and bitterness.

How I Would Have Done It

8:13 PM Sep 11, 2004by Rob Ritchie

The Rathergate forgeries are rather crude, and easily spotted because of their use of the Times New Roman font, the default font of Microsoft Word.

I confess that I am somewhat of a fan of what are called "distressed" typewriter fonts, i.e., computer fonts that mimic the look of typewriter keys that have worn down and become damaged through use. When I first heard about the questions raised about the "Killian" memos, my first thought was about the use of the distressed fonts. Here's how they might have looked if whoever forged the documents had decided to use something other than Word's default font.

Please Note: I don't really think that this would have fooled anybody, because these fonts are just as computer-generated as the fonts that were used; but, at least stylistically, it makes more sense than using the crisp, proportional font that they actually did use.

Here's what it'd look like using a font called VTypewriter. Click on the smaller image to view a larger image.

And here's what the same text looks like using a font called Adler

Next, we have a sample of how it'd look if they'd use the Addict font.

Finally, here's what it'd look like if they'd used Detective.

There are literally hundreds of distressed typewriter fonts available; a particularly smart forger might create his own font so that it couldn't be traced back to a known font created by someone else.

Of course now, if a new batch of memos appear using distressed, non-proportional fonts that appear to smear the President's record, you can safely ignore them.

2:56 PM Sep 11, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

LGF has some perspective Three Years On.


6:57 PM Sep 10, 2004by Rob Ritchie

There is now a name for the CBS 60-Minutes Killian Document Fraud story:


I believe it started here.

6:48 PM Sep 10, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

6:03 PM Sep 10, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Update:  Another thought on this: isn't it interesting that the forgeries were exactly what was needed to show that Bush had violated a direct order when he didn't show up for the physical when expected? And that the forgeries confirmed what every left-liberal knows in his heart to be true, viz. that Bush was a lousy pilot with connections? You'd think that someone at CBS would'a said Gosh, these memos are just a little too convenient.

5:29 PM Sep 10, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Like most people plugged into the blogosphere who lap up every drop of news and conjecture about the Swift Boat Vets / Christmas in Cambodia / CBS Forgeries, etc., I just keep coming back to a couple of ideas.

The first idea is that if I worked with George Bush in the TexANG back in 1972, would I really, really remember anything about him 32 years later? Would I actually remember specific incidences where I was pressured to doctor fitness reports or otherwise bend the rules on his behalf, or remember whether this specific guy was someplace at some time? I mean, it's not like anybody said to themselves, "This George Bush fellah is somebody I'd better pay attention to because his daddy will be president some day, and he will too." No, I suspect that most people forgot about him a couple of years later, just like everybody you worked with at a job after a few years.

On the other hand, what if, just after he left service, Bush had commenced a highly visible campaign to villify and slander his former comrades in uniform and had become a leader in the anti-war movement. I suspect that they'd still remember his after 30 years.

Of course, Bush didn't do that, but Kerry did. And that's why 30 years later, the memories (and anger) is still fresh among the Swift Boat Vets; and that's why many of the people who served with Bush don't remember too many details about him.

Because Bush's activities didn't sear, sear, the memories the way Kerry's activities did.

Oh, crap (updated)

4:48 PM Sep 10, 2004by Rob Ritchie

They made me start a new category!

2:36 PM Sep 10, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Captain Ed on the notion that CBS received the forged documents from the Kerry campaign:

Not only does it paint the entire Democratic party machine from Kerry and Terry McAuliffe down as completely dishonest, but also incredibly incompetent. How long would it have taken to have a document specialist verify the memos, especially given that even the campaign had its doubts? Voters who manage not to be completely put off by the dishonest have to ask themselves whether they want the country run by people this flat-out stupid. And fair or not, the whole mess winds up in John Kerry's lap. It's yet another case of misfiring a grenade, only this time the wounds won't be superficial.

6:43 PM Sep 9, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

CBS News has discovered some documents hurtful to W.

Only problem is, they are forgeries.

Interesting that this is going on so quickly; the show hasn't even aired, and it's already being debunked.

Advantage: blogsphere.

Update:  D'oh! The show aired on Wednesday.

5:29 PM Sep 9, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

My Uncle Morris, like millions of other young men, enlisted in the Navy in 1942.

He recently participated in a Library of Congress / National Archives project to record and preserve the experiences of these men who saved the world.

I am honored to have gotten permission to present his story here.

12:07 PM Sep 9, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Via The Tenser I see this story:

Police in Paris have discovered a fully equipped cinema-cum-restaurant in a large and previously uncharted cavern underneath the capital's chic 16th arrondissement.

Officers admit they are at a loss to know who built or used one of Paris's most intriguing recent discoveries.

"We have no idea whatsoever," a police spokesman said.

I find this sort of thing fascinating. I know that there really are lots of underground areas below old cities.

Patrick Alk, a photographer who has published a book on the urban underground exploration movement and claims to be close to the group, told RTL radio the cavern's discovery was "a shame, but not the end of the world". There were "a dozen more where that one came from," he said.

"You guys have no idea what's down there."

This ain't fixed yet

11:33 AM Sep 9, 2004by Rob Ritchie

If you are a licensed framer / roofer in the Orlando area, and would like some work, contact me. I still have damage left over from Charley.

11:15 AM Sep 9, 2004

by Rob Ritchie


Apparently this is what Kerry means when he says he would have taken us to war in a different way. First comes the ultimatum, then the inspectors, then the Kyoto treaty, then the tanks (presumably solar-powered) start rolling.

Additional points scored for the Sue Grafton reference.

10:54 AM Sep 9, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Instapundit has a lot of good stuff on the [re-]current fracas about W's ANG service. Give it a read.

Best Description Ever

11:10 AM Sep 8, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Llamabutchers opines:

Let's face it: the blogosphere is like the scene in Sixteen Candles, when Farmer Ted displays the trophy of Molly Ringwald's panties. Draw your own conclusions.

Hurricane Drinking Game

8:35 PM Sep 6, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Note: I do not recommend getting drunk during a hurricane, but a libation can certainly take the edge off. With that in mind.

  • When a newscaster says "Hunker Down" - DRINK
  • If the Hurricane is downgraded - DRINK
  • When you see (on TV) one of those gay little wind meters being held up by a rain-soaked reporter - DRINK
  • When a newscaster says the name of your city or town - DRINK
  • When a newcaster says the name of your neighborhood or subdivision - DOUBLE DRINK
  • If a newscaster says the name of your street or mentions your address - drop the bottle and seek shelter!

  • The game ends when the power goes out.

Power and Cable

7:01 PM Sep 6, 2004by Rob Ritchie

I am shocked, amazed and tickled pink to report that at 3:10 PM today, the power and cable came back on.

The video I took can be found here, here, here and here.

We're back on the air!

4:32 PM Sep 6, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Hey, the web host has power again, so I can give you an update.

Sunday morning, at 6:48 we lost power, in advance of the storm, and it's been off ever since. We also don't have cable. How am I blogging, you ask?

I have a generator buzzing outside, and I'm connected through the phone line.

We got through the storm with minimal damange, lots of tree-barf all over the place, but no additional trees down or big branches. We drove our friend home this morning, and so we got to see that the flooding was much less than expected, and the roads are clear and most of the traffic signals are still operational.

But it's been raining like crazy, as the last feeder bands of the storm blow through Central Florida. We are under tornado warnings / watches on and off as the last of Frances moves off westward

I've had two whole days, and I still can't fathom how large this storm is. It's still going on on the West Coast! I have pictures and video, which I'll post presently.

Update:  My pictures are pretty unconvincing, but the video looks pretty good. However, I can't upload them over the phone line. I'll get them up as soon as I can.

12:58 AM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I see on TV that Stuart is currently bearing the brunt of the storm as it slowly moves inland.

I'm praying for you, folks.

I'm frankly shocked that we still have power and that I'm still able to post. Cable has been rock solid, as has the electricity. The figure I am hearing is that there are a million Floridians without power.

I wonder if our little outage earlier today immunized is from further outages, sort of like when you get dead vaccine to immunize you from smallpox.

OK, it's a fanciful thought, but it's what I'm thinking.

10:09 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

We're going to sit down and watch a new DVD we got of The Postman Always Rings Twice. There isn't much else to do, so I'll be away for a while. The power will probably go off soon enough, but even if it does go out, we'll still be here.

Good luck, everyone!

8:16 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

It's so calm outside, it's hard to believe that there's an enormous storm just off the coast.

Image swiped from The Weather Channel

Technical Details

8:00 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

I am particularly lucky, because my web host is run by a friend of mine. I get excellent service, basically unlimited bandwidth (not that I need it) and a terrific rate.

The web server is about 5 miles due north of my house. If I lose power, so will it.

7:44 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I, like Michelle Malken, hope that former president Clinton has a full recovery from his heart surgery.

Of course, Michelle can't resist the opportunity for a tart remark:

After his surgery, Clinton probably will be prescribed one of the newest statins--medications that might not exist if Sen. Hillary Clinton's health care reform plan had been implemented a decade ago.


7:29 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Look who wants Bush to lose

It's exactly who you might expect,

View from the Front Porch IV

6:36 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

The rain is coming down now, but it isn't any worse than a normal afternoon thunderstorm. Actually, we haven't seen any lightning or thunder yet.

6:31 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

The best weather coverage seems to be on WFTV Channel 9. They have a first rate meteorologist named Jamie Martin, who is very good at explaining their Doppler RADAR images.

Not bad for old media.

Rain and wind squalls keep coming through. It's pretty messy outside.


6:06 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

According to the Weather Channel, Frances has stalled "just east of West Palm Beach."

Is it at all possible that it's going to stay there until it peters out? Or that it might move away eastwards?

I suppose that's too much to hope for.

5:56 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I'm not the only one blogging this, of course.

Donnah over at Florida Cracker has some great pictures; she's in North Fort Myers, which is pretty far from Orlando, so it gives you an idea of how large this storm really is!

On The Third Hand has a list of other folks that are Hurricane Blogging.

Update:  According to Kathy K, Donnah is actually in Broward County, which is in SE Florida (Not SW, where Ft. Myers is.) Thanks for the geography lesson!

View from the Front Porch III

5:44 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

At 11:45, five minutes or so after the previous post, the POWER WENT OUT.

It came back on (not doubt only temporarily) at 2:05 PM.

According to the radio, people are sort of outraged that the power went out so soon. I know I was.

Anyway, here's the latest picture:

Lots of wind gusts with heavy cloudcover, but it's not dark. No rain.

This may very well be my last post.

2:17 PM Sep 4, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

11:19 - the first rain bands are passing over the house. Big, cold drops!

Our friend Kathy has just arrived, so once the rain stops, we'll be unpacking her car.

We keep hearing the boom of transformers popping in the neighborhood, the 2nd just a few seconds ago. I can't believe that the power would go out so early in all this, but then again, we do have Progress Energy!

Update:  11:40 - rain stopped, and the sun is out. This is going to be a very strange couple of days!

View from the Front Porch II

2:02 PM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

11:00 AM. Cloudcover is heavy, but no rain yet. Windy, with some pretty strong gusts, I'd guess about 30 MPH.

I went to the Albertsons on Michigan and Orange and found this sign:

That was very welcome!This was about 9:30, and they had 9 pallets of ice and a large amount of dry ice. I don't know how long it'll last, though. I bought lots of ice and dry ice, and took it home, to Ray's house, and over to the in-laws.

Across the street from the Albersons the liquor store is boarded up, but open:

Got to keep those priorites straight!

View from the Front Porch

11:12 AM Sep 4, 2004by Rob Ritchie

8:00 AM, Saturday. Partly cloudy, somewhat breezy.


11:05 PM Sep 3, 2004by Rob Ritchie

AS of 7:56 P.M. Frances was downgraded to a Category 2 hurricane, according to the Weather Channel.

8:47 PM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

As Instapundit might say, this seems like good news:

For the first time since the Presidential race became a two person contest last spring, there is a clear leader, the latest TIME poll shows. If the 2004 election for President were held today, 52% of likely voters surveyed would vote for President George W. Bush, 41% would vote for Democratic nominee John Kerry, and 3% would vote for Ralph Nader, according to a new TIME poll conducted from Aug. 31 to Sept. 2.

A rare linquistic post

8:20 PM Sep 3, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Here's how you can tell a native Floridian from a transplant:

They call Frances a 'h&r-e-k&n instead of a 'h&r-&-"kAn

The Cracker pronounciation is sort of like that of "pelican".

Bureau of Irony Department

8:09 PM Sep 3, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Hey! Today I got official notification from my previous claim with FEMA about Hurricane Charley:

They say that if I go ahead and file the paperwork, I may be entitled to the amount indicated.

I'll get right on that.

(I'm not complaining about this, by the way. There are folks much worse off than me that I'd rather this federal money go to.)

Update:  You know, in retrospect, I have to commend them on the swiftness with which they processed my claim. It's been more than three weeks, and the insurance guy still hasn't come by to look at my property.

7:45 PM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

The latest information can be found at the Weather Channel:

Frances is still a dangerous hurricane but has (at least for the time being) weakened from the 145-mph Category 4 storm that it was on Thursday to a 115-mph Category 3 storm. Still, Frances continues to develop powerful convection (thunderstorms) around parts of its central core as it tries to rev up. There still is the distinct possibility that the hurricane could strengthen again. Wind gusts to 110 mph have been experienced at Nassau. Wind gusts of 115 mph have been reported in the Abacos in the northern Bahamas. Eleuthera in the Bahamas had sustained winds of 100 mph earlier as the island took a direct hit. San Salvador reported a sustained wind of 120 mph on Thursday as Frances moved across. The hurricane will continue to move slowly through the northwestern Bahamas toward the east coast of Florida.

Hurricane warnings and watches are in effect for Florida's east coast. Coastal southeast Florida could start feeling the outermost effects of the storm during the afternoon. Present thinking puts landfall on the east coast of Florida, any time from late Saturday to Sunday morning. While the landfall point is important, the destructive impacts from Frances may be widespread. This storm is larger and will affect more land than Charley did once it makes landfall. Keep in mind that tropical storm force winds and building surf will precede the approach of the hurricane by quite some time. The flooding rainfall impact is also likely to be significant with this hurricane. Flood watches have been issued across much of the Florida Peninsula.

7:33 PM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Red is worried about us.

So is Rachel.

Thanks for the good thoughts, ladies.

The storm is slowing down, which is either good or bad depending on who you ask. If it slows down enough, it could change course, or fronts could shift to push it out to sea, or whatever. I'm not a meteorologist, but the ones that play them on TV seem to have widely-differing opinions on what we can expect, but they are all agreed on what we should do.

Hunker down; and that is what I intend to do.

Oh, and blog.

7:01 PM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Everyone else probably already knows this (I am so behind the curve!), but you can find transcripts of all of the speeches delivered at the RNC on their website.

You know, those folks who say that the Bush campaign really seems to understand the web just might have something there....

6:37 PM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie


6:16 PM Sep 3, 2004by Rob Ritchie

I've finished tying down the debris created by Charley, in hopes that it won't be kicked up by Frances. Here's what it looks like:

With any luck, it'll all still be here Monday morning. There's a nice breeze outside, about 10 MPH with some gusts up to 15 or so. Very pleasant, but the sad thing to me is that next week, when the power's off and the temps are in the high 90's, there will be no breeze at all, just a dead stillness.

There's something very, very wrong with us!

2:49 PM Sep 3, 2004by Rob Ritchie

These are both quotes from the same movie. Take a guess in the comments section.

11:59 AM Sep 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I have been reading all over the blogosphere about how the Kerry Campaign and the Left in general are hurt and concerned and basically outraged by all the attacks they've received, from the Swift Vets, from Zell Miller, and from so many sources.

"It's unfair!" they say. "They're playing dirty!" they whine.

Do they think that our enemies are going to play by the rules? If they can't hold up to the normal rough-and-tumble of a presidential campaign (and for all their talk about "unprecidented attacks" this is fairly tame stuff), there is no friggin' way they could stand up to, say, our enemies flying airliners into buildings.

They'd go to the UN and whine about how "unfair" the terrorists were.

6:53 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

5:43 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Just got word that the plant will be closing early tomorrow, and that non-essential employees should be out by Noon. That's me, non-essential (makes me feel pretty damn important!).

Anyway, I'll be in in the morning to put bags over computer systems in case the roof of the plant blows away.

I'm still hoping that the storm will take a big swing northward and miss us, but I'm not betting on it.

4:23 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Donald Luskin's Joke of the Day.

Try reading it with a Bostonian accent...

4:08 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

I don't think that a month in the sun has done Andrew Sullivan any damn good.

2:33 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Ralph Peters in the New York Post; he begins:

YESTERDAY, in front of the American Legion's National Convention, John Kerry made his most disgraceful speech since he lied about atrocities to Congress three decades ago. By making promises he doesn't mean and can't keep, he tried to buy the votes of American veterans.

and ends

The only veterans' benefit young John Kerry fought for was the right of vets to be spit upon in public.

Go read everything else in-between.

Entire post stolen from: lgf

12:17 PM Sep 2, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

If you, like me, missed Zell Miller's electrifying speech at the RNC last night, you can find video of it here.

6:39 PM Sep 1, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Allah, most wise Creator of Worlds, had an interesting collection of links about the anti-Republican demos in NYC.

Here we go again!

4:55 PM Sep 1, 2004by Rob Ritchie

For the latest information on the latest hurricane to threaten trees, homes, comfort and property values in the Orlando area, click here.

If you're curious about the last time a hurricane came our way, click here.

Update:  The main concern on people's minds is the huge amount of debris, neatly stacked in almost every lawn, left over from Charley. Frances has been described as being a much more powerful storm, and all that stuff will make [in]convenient missiles when propelled by hurricane winds. I visited a Home Depot and a Lowes today, and they were swiftly being stripped of plywood and other prophylactics.

Update 2:  Rachel Lucas comments

4:39 PM Sep 1, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

"Fightin' Al" Franken mixes it up again.

More here.

More:  Michelle Malkin asks: "IS AL FRANKEN MENTALLY ILL?"