Archive for January, 2006

State of the Union

Tuesday, January 31st, 2006

I didn’t get a chance to watch the State of the Union Address, but I did read the transcript. Looks like the President did a good job overall. I was surprised to hear Bush admit that America is addicted to oil. While his solution involves the typical big governmentism that plagues this administration, I suppose there’s less desirable things we could funding. Maybe, just maybe, we can break this oil addiction. If so, we can wash our hands of the Saudis and other Middle Eastern autocrats. Here’s hoping!

Alito Confirmed

Tuesday, January 31st, 2006

Despite a last second effort by Ted Kennedy and others, Sam Alito was confirmed to the Supreme Court this morning by a 58-42 vote.

What Should He Say?

Monday, January 30th, 2006

Lorie Byrd has some suggestions for President Bush’s State of the Union Address tonight.

Quote of the Day

Monday, January 30th, 2006

Bob Krumm:

How ironic, that of the last two Senators who have lost elections to a sitting President, the one who went on to advertise erectile dysfunction treatments is not the one losing his dignity.

Stein on Stein

Monday, January 30th, 2006

Chris Lewis e-mails this article by Ben Stein, a response to Joel Stein’s notorious column explaining his lack of support for the troops.

Replacing Frist

Sunday, January 29th, 2006

Town political reporter Dustin Hawkins examines the race to replace Frist:

Most polling data suggests that Tennessee’s landscape won’t be changing much after the 2006 elections. Despite having high name recognition in the state, Harold Ford Jr. still trails both Republican frontrunners Bryant and Hilleary in recent polling data. Likewise, the governor’s mansion is looking to stay in Democratic control as no opponent has yet to take the challenge of facing Bredesen. For now, Tennessee looks to be a safe bet for all incumbent parties involved.

Read the whole thing. It is well worth your time.

It’s hard to disagree with Hawkins’ analysis, and I certainly wish that Van Hilleary would take his advice and challenge Phil Bredesen. As has been said all over the blogosphere, having both Hilleary and Bryant in the race splits the conservative vote and gives Corker a better chance of winning. I have nothing against the former Chattanooga mayor; if he wins the nomination I’ll certainly vote for him. But from where I sit, Ed Bryant is the best candidate. He is the most conservative and the most electable.

Van Hilleary is conservative as well, but, as we saw in the 2002 gubernatorial race, he has a knack for pulling defeat out of the jaws of victory. His negativism hurts himself and the GOP in general, which makes running for governor a better fit for him. That way, he could channel all his bitterness against Phil Bredesen.

Of course, this is a dream scenario. The chances of Hilleary jumping into the governor’s race are virtually nil. If he did, it’s unlikely that he could beat Bredesen (which is the sole reason he is in the Senate race). For good or ill, we’re stuck with a three man primary. Let’s just hope the right man (Ed Bryant) wins.

Gone Fishin’

Sunday, January 29th, 2006

Cove Lake State Park, Campbell County, TN.

Challenger: 20 Years Later

Friday, January 27th, 2006

It’s hard to believe that twenty years have passed since the Challenger tragedy, which claimed the lives of Christa McAuliffe, Dick Scobee, Mike Smith, Ellison Onizuka, Judy Resnik, Ron McNair, and Greg Jarvis. This tragedy (along with Columbia 17 years later) reminded everyone how fragile life is, and that space travel remains very dangerous. It also drove home just how brave astronauts really are.

Challenger is one of my earliest memories. I was only four at the time, and probably didn’t fully understand what happened. But I do recall a profound sadness over the event. I was very fascinated by outer space in those days (and still am), and seeing such a disaster was very horrifying. I can only imagine what it must have been like for the crew and their families.

But just as ship wrecks didn’t stop the great explorers of centuries past, tragedies like Challenger and Columbia cannot stop mankind’s expansion into space. A desire to expand horizons is a uniquely human desire that led our ancestors to cross vast oceans, risking their lives just to see what is on the other side. This same desire will lead our descendants to journey across vast expanses of space to explore distant worlds. What will they find? We can only speculate. One thing is clear: Mankind’s exploration of space will continue.

And no doubt the crews of Challenger and Columbia would have wanted it that way.

Quote of the Day

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Professor Reynolds:

You know, to me Wal-Mart is a lot like George W. Bush. It’s not that I’m that big a fan in the abstract, really, it’s just that the viciousness and stupidity revealed in its enemies tends to make me view it more favorably than I otherwise would.

Hamas Wins Palestinian Elections

Thursday, January 26th, 2006

It will be interesting to see how this will be blamed on Israel.

Hamas is a terrorist group that had murdered babies, mothers, and teenagers in pizza parlors. It is committed to the destruction of Israel. If a Canadian or Mexican party desiring the destruction of the United States came to power, we would not deal with them. I don’t see how we can expect any different from the Israelis.

It is now impossible to honestly blame any roadblock to peace on Israel.

UPDATE: Dave Price offers an interesting viewpoint:

For Palestinians, this was a referendum on corruption. The choice was between incompetent, corrupt terrorists and somewhat more honest, less corrupt terrorists. Frankly, given their options, I think they made the right choice.

Of course, the real tragedy is that their options were limited to terrorists and criminals. The Palestinians spend their lives steeped in hate propaganda, from cradle to grave, and that’s the root problem here. There’s no debate, no protection of free speech: those who speak out against the illogic of requiring Israel’s destruction risk being murdered as “collaborators.” The Arab proxy war against Israel has never ended, and it probably won’t as long the current regimes remain in Iran and Syria.