Saturday, October 3, 2009

Sometimes you have to wonder . . .

. . . about the Sullivanesque lack of self-awareness over at Little Green Footballs, where Charles Johnson reacts to Dan Rieh's post and my link to Dan by declaring that I'm "right on board with the 'ghey child predator' murder theories," provoking classic LGF comments like these:

5 Sharmuta
Sat, Oct 3, 2009 5:12:55pm
Riehl needs professional help. This is beyond depraved.

6 Cathypop
Sat, Oct 3, 2009 5:14:46pm
How dare this POS do this to an innocent man.
Pay-back is hell and I hope Riehl enjoys hell. . . .

9 Guanxi88
Sat, Oct 3, 2009 5:18:32pm
I said before - this fellow, and guys like him, will do anything in their desperation to remove the blood they see on their hands. Anything.

14 Killgore Trout
Sat, Oct 3, 2009 5:19:43pm
re: #7 Conservative Moonbat
I'm guessing that story might not be true. I think it's just an effort to discredit him.

At which point, the overwhelming irony caused my eyes to roll completely out of my head. Readers who've followed the story of the Little Green Meltdown can only laugh at the thought of Killgore Trout pretending to be appalled by "an effort to discredit" someone.

Dan Riehl is a friend I've worked with often, and disagreed with from time to time. I linked his original "child predator" post last weekend, but of course, I linked Sully's "Southern populist terrorism" post, too. If I only linked things I agreed with 100%, I'd mostly be linking myself. Blogospheric onanism is not a productive commercial traffic-enhancement strategy.

Remember that Dan's done a lot of true-crime blogging (he made a big splash with the Natalie Holloway case) so he's not a rookie in this regard. His flame-baiting with Pandagon might have been unnecessarily provocative, but I don't tell Dan Riehl what to do. (In case you haven't figured it out yet, nobody tells Dan Riehl what to do.)

There is no evidence of any child predation by Bill Sparkman, but Dan's interest in that angle caused him to spot a Tampa Tribune story crammed with gaydar-tingling hints that "Fe Fe" -- the nickname Sparkman picked up in his native Florida -- was gay. And so I linked Dan's post and the Tampa story and said:
[T]he speculation that Sparkman was gay has been bouncing around all over the 'sphere for days. Dan e-mailed to mention this to me, and I replied that many people in Clay and Laurel counties suspected that, at the very least, Sparkman had homosexual tendencies. NTTAWWT.
As I told Dan, the problem is that we have no idea whether Sparkman's sexuality (whatever it was, and all I know is what people in Kentucky told me) had anything to do with his disappearance and death. It might be relevant or not.
Because a good reporter doesn't burn his sources, I'm not going to get any further into what I heard in Kentucky or who I heard it from. But if the Associated Press or some Kentucky media outlet decides to jump on that angle, I've done enough background preparation that I'm not going to be scooped too bad or for very long.

What fascinates me is the intense desire to control the "narrative frame" of this story in terms of political symbolism. Left-wingers like MyDD's David Empsall pushed so hard to turn Sparkman's death into "Lynching in Lower Glennbeckistan" -- some kind of feral right-wing madness unleashed by Michelle Bachmann, Eric Cantor, talk radio and Fox News -- that I was inspired to drive more than 500 miles to Clay County and spend three days checking it out.

As a result of that trip, I can report that what might be called the consensus view of well-informed area residents is that some local drug operator -- a pot grower, a meth cooker or a dealer -- was most likely to have killed Sparkman.

At the hotel in London, Ky., where I stayed (after checking out of the Best Western in Manchester because I couldn't get the Wi-Fi connection to work), there were two marked Kentucky State Police patrol cars in the parking lot, as well as an unmarked SUV with government tags and all kinds of radio aerials.

The night clerk at the hotel was himself a former law-enforcement official, retired on medical disability, who explained to me that these KSP officers weren't in town for the murder investigation. Rather, they were participating in the annual crackdown on the local marijuana harvest. (See this 2007 USA Today article for background.) KSP brings in officers from other parts of the state, so that local officers don't have to bust their friends, relatives and neighbors.

Meanwhile, in August, a big undercover investigation ("Operation Borrowed Time") headed up by Clay County Sheriff Clay Johnson and Manchester Police Chief Jeff Culver resulted in more than 50 drug arrests in Clay County.

Which is to say, Sparkman turned up dead at a time when illegal drug operations in Clay County were coming under some very heavy law-enforcement pressure. It's very easy to understand why a dope grower or meth cooker might have been paranoid about somebody with a federal ID asking a bunch of questions. And if that somebody was Bill Sparkman, the motive for his death isn't a big mystery.

Where do the rumors about Sparkman's sexuality fit into this story? I don't know that they do. If it's a 75% chance that Sparkman was killed just because he "knocked on the wrong door," as one Kentucky source put it, then his sexuality is irrelevant.

I'm trying to get to the facts here, and don't have a lot of patience with idiots wasting my time by pointing fingers at Dan Riehl (or Michelle Malkin or Glenn Beck) and screaming hysterically about "blood on their hands." For myself, you can go ask Kelsee Brown what a horrible homophobic hatemonger I am.

Whoever killed Bill Sparkman -- and I agree with Sparkman's son Josh that suicide and accident can be practically ruled out -- the killer or killers are still on the loose. Until they're brought to justice, this politicized finger-pointing is just a waste of time.

UPDATE: In regard to the shortage of people willing to do actual reporting, Patrick at Alexandria writes:
The harvest is vast, but the laborers are few.
Exactly. While I was checking out the story in Kentucky last week, I had an interesting conversation with Andrew Marcus of Founding Bloggers who asked me, Where are all these laid-off journalists who've lost their jobs in the Great Newspaper Meltdown of the past few years?

There is clearly an opportunity for entrepreneurial online journalism by resourceful reporters who can find a way to operate indepedently on a shoestring budget. And yet it's hard to see where any of the people laid off from the big metropolitan papers have actually taken advantage of this opportunity.

UPDATE II: You've got to laugh at the mind-numbing idiocy of "Cato the Elder," a damned fool who doesn't even get my Cousin Brian's jest about "the new black," a pop culture reference which means that something is the latest vogue, e.g., "taupe is the new black."

The Fool Cato construes Brian's remark as a "whine," when in fact it was a shrug of indifference, a dry acknowledgement of contemporary reality. The Fool Cato is so inextricably wedded to the liberal victimhood narrative -- where every problem ever suffered by anyone who isn't white can be understood only as a result of white racism -- that he can't even realize what's happening when his game is busted by an Atlanta bar bouncer.

Here you see how The Vision of the Anointed blinds people to reality. It's "The Irrelevance of Evidence," as Sowell called it. Envisioning the world categorically, with prefabricated explanations for every phenomenon, the anointed loudly proclaim their open-mindedness and tolerance while fanatically pursuing vendettas of narrow-minded zealotry.

When the anointed encounter anomalous phenomena that don't fit their rigid mental molds, they become frustrated. When you try to explain that they might have stumbled onto evidence that their categories and prefab explanations are invalid, this provokes a vengeful rage. And that's when you realize that you're not actually arguing about whatever it was that provoked the argument.

Their own infallibilty -- the awe-inspiring authority of their opinions -- is the actual subject of their argument. The anointed worldview is an incomprehensible mish-mash of self-contradiction and error, which is why the liberal furiously denounces as guilty of bad faith (mala fides) anyone who persistently criticizes the validity of the worldview.

No person of good faith could fail to agree with liberalism, you see. Therefore, when you disagree with the liberal, you are not merely mistaken, but evil.

The Fool Cato doesn't need to know anything about my Cousin Brian in order to conclude that Brian is inferior. And Brian's inferiority -- his status as some hick on whom Cato is qualified to pronounce judgment -- is the entire point of what Cato calls a "Socratic" rant.

Grab a cup of hemlock, Socrates. Cheers!

The Senate, Considered as a Scene from a Monty Python Flick

by Smitty

Instapudit links PJTV's Allen Barton interviewing Brian Darling summarizing his Human Events article describing how the Senate plans to use another piece of legislation as a Trojan horse, a Parthian prophylactic.

Terry Jones and Yaron Brook follow up and discuss the parliamentary tactics and Constitutionality of the idea.

The entire clip is well worth your time. But if you've just a moment or two to spare, consider a more symbolic summary.

The Monty Python have skillfully dramatized the situation. In this rendition:
  • the healthcare legislation is a wooden, wheeled rabbit
  • the American people are French soldiers in a castle
  • their liberty is the Grail
  • the Senators are dressed as knights and lampooned by the best
  • the American people do that which is fitting and proper with the whole crapadelic idea.

More seriously, how about the GOP Senators, e.g. this blog's namesake, demonstrating some integrity and calling foul on this entire disgusting charade?

Question: Why do people treat you badly?

Answer: Because you let them.

Not long ago, at a social event in D.C., I found myself talking to a very intelligent, funny, attractive woman who is 31 years old and not married. She had just ended a "relationship" with a guy, and I was sort of amazed.

Why was she still single? And why would this guy date her and dump her? Surely, if he had any appreciation of her wonderful qualities -- some qualities evident to the eye, and others that might be learned in a brief conversation -- he would have spent all he had to buy her a diamond ring, fallen on his knees and, with tears streaming down his face, begged for her hand in marriage.

He had not done this, however. Rather, he treated her like Just Another Woman, not as Someone Special, and so they drifted along for a while and then parted company. As always in such cases, I advised the young lady how to avoid a repetition of her painful disappointment.

Update: (Smitty)
An alternative answer would be: "They have the permissions and you can't stop them."
This interruption brought to you while issuing a party foul for saying:
"You know the old story about free milk and a cow? Make up your mind to keep the cow in the barn."
How do you not embed the Georgia Satellites?

(There. Fixed that for ya. Back to the original post.)

Tactics, Strategy and Nookie
Excuse me if that sounds simplistic and old-fashioned, but it works. I'm not saying that women should be uptight, Victorian prudes about sex. And, rather than argue about "tithing mint and cumin," I'll take an agnostic stance on the wisdom and morality of engaging in what we might call minor premarital intimacies.

Still, if it is a husband that a woman is seeking, rather than just another in an endless series of going-nowhere "relationships," her negotiating posture in the marriage market is greatly enhanced if she avoids giving up the nookie -- humping, screwing, fornicating, making the beast with two backs, call it what you will -- until she can entrap her prey and drag him to the altar.

Ladies, please note that this is strategic advice. You don't have to be a Christian or a conservative or a pure-as-driven-snow virgin -- although it would be better if you were all three -- to benefit by putting your vajajay off-limits until you can persuade some horny fool respectable gentleman to make the pledge of "forsaking all others 'til death do you part."

Making the decision to keep your britches on henceforth does not require you to make a moral judgment about your sexual past. Even if you spent your teenage years slutting around like Meghan McCain after four margaritas, this doesn't necessarily make you a bad person -- unless you start writing ill-informed RINO political commentary for Tina Brown's Daily Beast, in which case, you're a total whore with pustulent chancres.

Habit, Behavior, Identity
It is important to understand, in this regard, how sexual habit can become sexual identity in such a way that people effectively trap themselves into self-defeating patterns. The largest and most vital sexual organ is your brain, and a lot of what is nowadays is described as sexual "orientation" or sexual "preference" is actually a matter of mental habit.

By repeated thoughts and actions, people's minds become accustomed to one sort of behavior, one sort of sexual ideation. The nature of the human mind is such that our minds can be trained to respond to stimuli in a patterned way, which is true not only in sex, but in eating, writing, talking, etc. If a certain Daily Beast columnist has a habit of slugging down tequila and then wandering off with any man who shows the slightest interest, this is a learned pattern of behavior. She wasn't "born that way."

Once well-established, these mental patterns and their associated behavioral habits are difficult to unlearn, no matter how unsatisfactory or harmful the results. In this sense, people with unfortunate sexual habits are kind of like people who keep voting for Democrats no matter how badly the Democrats screw them over. It's a matter of personal identity: Being a Democrat is who they are.

And so, for some women, being a "party girl" becomes a matter not only of mental habit and behavior pattern, but also a source of self-identification. One sometimes encounters a woman so far gone in this kind of hardened whorishness that, like Naomi Wolf, she scoffs at the very idea that chastity might be considered more virtuous than promiscuity. And if you try to defend the concept of chastity in argument with such a person, you'll quickly find yourself accused of misogyny or being "anti-sex."

Hypocrisy and the Damage Done
Anyone who's known me for more than five minutes would laugh to think that I might ever be accused of being "anti-sex." If you don't consider my 20-year marriage and six children sufficient proof of my pro-sex bona fides, perhaps you ought to inquire among friends who knew me before I met my wife, when I was a extremely wicked person.

"Well, see there?" says the scoffer. "You're such a hypocrite! You slutted around until you were 29, but you expect other people not to do that."

Oh, if only you knew what harm I did -- to myself and others -- during my days of heedless wickedness. We are talking about harm that cannot be undone, lives that cannot be repaired, dreams left shattered like glass. Had it not been for grace, and the persistent prayers of those who cared about me, who knows where I might have ended up? And who knows what further harm has befalled innocent others because of the ripple effects of evil I did more than two decades ago?

"Judge not lest ye be judged" is one of those passages of the Bible that always gets twisted around to mean something quite different than what it actually supposed to mean. Jesus never hesitated to call sin by its right name.

In fact, in one of the most famous incidents of the ministry of Christ, when he saved the life of the woman caught in adultery -- "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone" -- after telling the woman that he did not condemn her, Jesus then commanded her, "Go, and sin no more." Having extended grace and mercy, he asked in return her repentance from the sins for which he had refused to let her die. And who can doubt, from that moment forward, this woman lived a life of extraordinary virtue?

The Vajayjay Gospel
Sometimes I'm amazed at how superficial and judgmental professed Christians can be, and how they insist that everyone engage in a pharisaical pretense of sinlessness, not even acknowledging the sin they see everywhere around them, except to condemn it in the stereotypical fashion of Official Church Talk. To these "churchy" people, it is abhorrent to speak to a sinner in terms the sinner can relate to -- and what am I, but a sinner myself? -- as if writing humorously about "nookie" and "vajayjay" might lead someone astray.

Let's go back now to that 31-year-old lovelorn lady whom I advised to keep the cow in the barn. She was raised in a religious home, and would almost certainly like to live a life that her parents and grandparents could admire. "Churchy" people are effectively telling that woman she only has two choices. She can either (a) be all uptight and churchy like them, or else (b) keep on fornicating like a two-bit floozy.

Excuse me if I consider that a false dilemma. If you live long enough to see a few miracles worked in people's lives, you know that many decent, respectable Christians -- the finest pillars of their community and exemplars of moral conduct -- were once the most horribly shameless of reprobate sinners. And even today, the redeemed may face terrible struggles and temptations as they strive to live up to the repentance that was asked as the only price of their priceless salvation: "Go and sin no more."

When I talk to young people (and some not-so-young people) about developing their careers and initiating projects -- whether in politics, business or anything else -- I like to say, "If you can conceive it and believe it, you can achieve it." To explain what I mean:
  • Conceive it -- Anything we accomplish in life begins with a concept, some idea we have of something we wish to do, whether it's starting a rock band or organizing a petition drive. We may alter our plans along the way, improvising and revising by the process of trial and error, but we must begin by coming up with an idea -- conceiving -- of something we wish to do.
  • Believe it -- There is something almost magical about the enthusiasm and confidence of someone who truly believes in what they're doing. At CPAC '08, a month before I started blogging full-time in March 2008, one of my earliest endorsements came from Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs: "The most enthusiastic blogger I have yet to meet." Although I only got 6,000 visits that first full-time month, I knew in my heart that if I worked as hard as I could at it, using what I'd learned in my journalism career and what I'd picked up from studying the work of successful bloggers, I could make it work. Every small success therefore was welcomed as affirmation that I was doing the right thing, and every disappointment shrugged off as an obstacle to be overcome, rather than an insuperable barrier to success.
  • Achieve it - What could possibly be more enjoyable than succeeding at something where no one ever expected you to succeed? Imagine the satisfaction of seeing all those naysayers and detractors eat their words when you accomplish something they told you couldn't be done. You've earned it, you sweated for it, you kept plugging away no matter how often you failed and despite all the criticism of those who called you crazy for even trying. Now you're the freakin' big dog, baby, and those critics look like fools for having ever doubted you.
William Jacobson just crossed the million-hit threshold and if you'll look around, you'll notice all kinds of people achieving things that people told them couldn't be done. Andrew Breitbart was once a slacker with ADD, and Glenn Beck was once a washed-up alcoholic DJ.

God loves to make the impossible happen, just to remind us that he's still in the business of miracles. And when I see someone like that 31-year-old lady -- smart, funny, attractive -- feeling lonely, unloved and unloveable, I want to share with them the idea that it doesn't have to be that way. All you've got to do is to conceive it and believe it, and you can achieve it.

Trust me. As the Rule 5 guru, I'm a good judge of what guys like, and this girl's definitely got it. She must merely learn to negotiate from a position of strength -- keep the cow in the barn, honey, and don't let guys treat you like Just Another Woman -- and she'll have 'em begging for it.

That's why I remind you of the motto of The McCain Institute: Good nookie is a terrible thing to waste.

Update: (Smitty)
Bride of Rove links and ponders this post.

Update II (Smitty)
Further linkage from:

Gimme a 'T' for Texas!

"What is it with these ignorant, arrogant self-styled bi-coastal types who presume to declare that anyone who does not conform to their tastes and preferences is just an idiotic hillbilly? I'm probably more educated, experienced, and well-traveled than about ninety percent of those fools, but because I choose to live in West Texas rather than in some crime-ridden urban rat-hole, I must be the second coming of Jimmy Swaggart."
-- Mike LaRouche, Lubbock, Texas

UPDATE on the Kentucky Killing: 'We Don't Even Know What We Don't Know'

Because law enforcement officials are being extremely circumspect in discussing the death of Bill Sparkman -- whose nude body was found Sept. 12 in the Hoskins family cemetery near Arnetts Fork Road in Clay County, Ky. -- the absence of information has led to extremely irresponsible speculation.

I'm working on a very long, detailed account of the case based on my trip to Kentucky, but I had to lay that aside for a while today when I saw a grossly misleading story in Newsweek. This prompted me to whip out a quick 861 words for The American Spectator:
"He knocked on the wrong door," was the way one resident described what most locals familiar with the case consider the most likely scenario for Sparkman's killing. As the Newseek story notes, eastern Kentucky is known as a haven of marijuana growers. The weed growers plant their crops in Daniel Boone National Forest, which sprawls across the mountainous region and encompasses half of Clay County.
What would be proven if we knew (as we do not) that Sparkman was engaged in Census work at the time of his disappearance -- most likely Sept. 9, three days before his body was discovered in the Hoskins family cemetery some 30 miles east of his home -- and "knocked on the wrong door"?
If the fatal door he knocked on was at the home of a marijuana grower or a drug dealer (methamphetamine and other drugs are also problems in the region), who killed him after mistaking Sparkman's federal identification as evidence that the stranger was a narcotics agent, is that an "anti-government" or "anti-Census" motive? Or is it merely a criminal seeking to prevent detection of his crimes -- the kind of killing that happens with unfortunate frequency in America all the time?
That, however, is strictly a hypothetical scenario. The haste of some journalists and bloggers to attribute Sparkman's mysterious death to a particular motive -- to give it a political meaning -- based on speculation and assumptions, is irresponsible in the extreme. . . .
Read the whole thing. A smart reporter never burns his sources, so I can't identify the Kentucky journalist who this past week exclaimed to me in exasperation: "We don't know anything. Hell, we don't even know what we don't know."

Which is why it was perhaps a fortunate coincidence that a "top Hayekian public intellectual" drove more than 500 miles to spend three days gathering information about the Sparkman case. Students of Friedrich Hayek know how the Nobel Prize-winning economist emphasized that information is diffused widely among the population, so that no "expert" or group of experts can ever claim to have complete knowledge in any given field. The failure of intellectuals to recognize the limits of their own expertise leads to harmful preconceptions and myths, as Greg Ransom has explained.

The Hayekian insight has utility far beyond the field of economics. Appreciating the value of unknown facts -- information beyond our immediate knowledge, which may actually be more important than the facts we do know -- is essential to a genuinely objective pursuit of truth.

The lazy assumption that we know all we need to know, that there cannot be any unknown facts that contradict the beliefs we form on the basis of partial information, is the basis of far too many mistaken beliefs. I've already reported how stereotypes of rural Kentuckians as backward, ignorant and impoverished have resulted in a misleading portrayal of the decent, hard-working, law-abiding citizens of Clay County. (Let's don't even get into the Kelsee Brown angle.) And now we see how a too-eager desire to cast Bill Sparkman's death as a political symbol is leading to assumptions that may be equally misinformed.

It's a free country, which means everyone is free to speculate how and why Bill Sparkman died. But ill-informed speculation and assumptions are no substitute for facts, and there are still too many unknown facts for anyone to pretend to know the motives of whoever put Sparkman's body in that cemetery.

If the editors of Newsweek don't want to pay for solid, sensible, accurate reporting, they need to grab themselves a fresh, hot cup of delicious STFU.

Hit the tip jar, y'all. My wife won't like this one bit, but if I can collect another $500 in the Shoe Leather Reporting Fund, I'll go back to Kentucky and keep after this story until folks in Clay County award me honorary hillbilly status.

UPDATE: Jimmie Bise at Sundries Shack calls the Newsweek story "Another Steaming Pile of MSM Journalism," and we've got ourselves a Rule 3 opportunity with a Memeorandum thread.

UPDATE II: Yehuda the Rhetorican:
Newsweek -- like much of the Legacy Media -- needs to become re-acquainted with the importance of shoe leather to quality journalism. And I don’t mean it needs a kick in the @$$, although it certainly does.
Speaking of which, how about some kicking rock 'n' roll?

UPDATE III: Linked in Left Coast Rebel's roundup and . . . Well, the Tampa Tribune had an interesting profile of Bill Sparkman. I didn't want to "go there," but as Dan Riehl points out, the speculation that Sparkman was gay has been bouncing around all over the 'sphere for days. Dan e-mailed to mention this to me, and I replied that many people in Clay and Laurel counties suspected that, at the very least, Sparkman had homosexual tendencies. NTTAWWT.

As I told Dan, the problem is that we have no idea whether Sparkman's sexuality (whatever it was, and all I know is what people in Kentucky told me) had anything to do with his disappearance and death. It might be relevant or not. At any rate, that Tampa story is full of very strong suggestions that my Kentucky sources have reasonbly accurate "gaydar."

We await Andrew Sullivan's next hysterical post claiming that Sparkman was a victim of hillbilly homophobia.

UPDATE IV: Paco points out exactly why the Newsweek story sticks in my craw: While I'm driving more than 1,300 round-trip in a 2004 KIA to report this story, Eve Conant gets paid a full-time salary to sit around writing a 1,700-word essay that concludes:
The Census Bureau field-training manual advises employees on everything from walking only in lighted areas to staying away from political issues, especially when someone is hostile: "Do not defend yourself or the government with respondents who say they hate you and all government employees. Indicate that you regret this opinion and express a desire to provide them with a positive experience." Perhaps Bill Sparkman wasn't given the time to follow that sage advice.
Perhaps. And perhaps the staff of Newsweek could take up a collection at their office, so they could buy a clue as to why they're losing credibility.

UPDATE V: Speaking of "losing credibility," Charles Johnson and the few remaining unbanned denizens of LGF Lizardland are going bonkers over Dan Riehl and "the ghey."

Thanks to Bob Belevedere for his latest aggregation.

Money talks, Polanski walks

Flee to Europe, pay off the victim:
Roman Polanski agreed to pay his victim of sexual assault $500,000, 15 years after he fled the US, according to court documents released to the media.
The French-Polish director is being held in Switzerland on a US arrest warrant over his 1977 conviction for unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl.
The confidential deal between Mr Polanski and the victim, Samantha Geimer, was reached in October 1993.
It was disclosed because of a two-year struggle to get the film-maker to pay. . . .
The last court filing in August 1996 stated that he owed Ms Geimer $604,416.22, including interest.
What was it that F. Scott Fitzgerald said? The rich are different than you and me. They have more money, so when they feed a 13-year-old Quaaludes and rape her anus, they can skip out to Europe, offer their victim a fat settlement and spend the next 30 years collecting "Lifetime Achievement" awards.

Everybody in Hollywood thinks that's just cool. What Hollywood condemns is the ignorance and intolerance of yokels who don't agree that Polanski's artistic genius should grant him license to rape.

Furious Motorhead Journalist Roots About

by Smitty

s/Motorhead/Gonzo/ in the title. The FMJRA poetic license was fortunately laminated before the NEA dipped it in a jar of something unspeakable. Nothing some disinfectant can't handle.

Stacy's foray into Kentucky dominates the links this time. Thank you to everyone who supported the effort, prayerfully, financially, or linky-lovey.

Stacy Goes Bluegrass
Convinced that the mainstream media reporting on the death of Mr. Bill Sparkman couldn't really be all that bad, Stacy passed the hat and hit the road, finding, to his shock, a state full of normal, decent people.

Brooks Hates You, Which Really Hurts Inside, No?Rio--Schadenfreude as National Pastime
Derrion Albert
Yet another senseless death.
Roman Polanski
I never went back and amplified the post I put up where I said it was "statutory" rape. The situation was certainly sicker than just consensual fornication. Regret any appearance of having given the guy a pass. This gets scarier when it puts me inadvertently close to Whoopie Goldberg. Punishment indeed.
  • Anorak linked Stacy's summation: "A particularly vile pervert".
  • ThinkingMeat reaches for the tenderizer. Swing and a miss.
  • Troglopundit rhetorically asks what it takes to get Hollyweird to shun you, then answers his question graphically.
  • The Coffee Shop seems to put me in the apologist category.
  • Carol's Closet linked Stacy's original post.
  • Track-a-'Crat had some Polanski thoughts.
Has Your Book Hit #1 on 'Zon 6 Weeks Before Publication?
  • David Weigel perpetuates a few unnecessary smears while using Stacy's tie to Sarah's collaborator as a springboard for a story. David, you had an opportunity to be cool here. Swing and a miss.
  • Adrienne's Catholic Corner had a chat with Stacy on the topic.
  • Another Black Conservative is touting the book.
  • Troglopundit has been rounding up the Palin AutoMotivators. We went for the cosmic win with the title.
  • Alan Colmes mentions, but does not link this blog, while talking about Lynn Vincent.

Ayers the Ghostwriter

A Little Bit of Patton
LGF Update
  • The Rude News discusses LFG tactics, training and procedures (TTP).
  • Red Alerts has apparently been attacked in action peripheral to the main Charles Johnson fracas.
Nannyism for Real

Other FMJRA Outings:
Theme? In this FMJRA? What Theme?

Miscellaneous Shouts:
Please send updates to Smitty. I have reserve duty this weekend, but will attend to these matters later Saturday.

'Total fantasy'? Rep. Jan Schakowsky denies lesbian affair with Turkish spy

Yeah, because (a) Democrats never have sexual affairs and (b) there are no bisexual Democrats in Congress. Video via Steve Bartin at NewsAlert:

Frankly, if I were going to have a "total fantasy," it wouldn't involve any Democratic women, bisexual or otherwise. Republican chicks are much hotter. But this story is probably bogus. Not even the Turkish secret service could find anybody capable of pretending they were attracted to Jan Schakowsky. That's just sick . . .

Friday, October 2, 2009

OMG! Ashley Herzog has decided to prove once and for all she's a natural blonde!

Photographic proof, IYKWIMAITYD!

Not since Little Miss Attila published those nude photos of Hannah Giles has such a scandal rocked the conservative blogosphere. BTW, both Ace of Spades and Matthew Vadum claim to have seen Little Miss Attila topless at CPAC a couple of years ago, but they're probably just joking.

Speaking of natural blondes, everybody's favorite strawberry blonde, Becky Banks Brindle, will be having her big church wedding to Allen "Big Al" Brindle next weekend in Pittsburgh. Allen is very tall and has incredibly large hands, which probably explains why Becky dragged him to a courthouse in Virginia in December to stake her legal claim to the breathtaking awesomeness for which "Big Al" is legendary.

Now, just to make their mutual satisfaction copacetic with The Man Upstairs, the suspiciously happy couple -- we notice that "Trout Pout" has been smiling rather blissfully since December -- will be doing the formal religious acknowledgement of their blessed union.

In case anyone's been wondering why Becky hasn't been blogging much lately, it's probably because she's been so busy (a) planning her wedding, and (b) serving up hot home-cooked deliciousness to sate her hubby's voracious appetite. Nudge, nudge.

Despite the universal envy which their connubial contentment inspires, we all wish them the best, and expect the first of many large-handed blonde Banks/Brindle babies to make its appearance sometime early next summer. Allen's already refused lucrative offers for video of the conception, but maybe if you guys will hit the tip jar, I'll see if I can talk him into arranging for me to take photos of the delivery. IYKWIMAITYD.

(Trust me, Allen: I'm a happily married father of six. As we say at The McCain Institute, if you've seen one episiotomy, you've seen 'em all. This is about neutral, objective professional journalism.)

'The Ego Has Landed'

by Smitty

Thus went the Drudge headline after BHO was kicked to the curb in Copenhagen.

But that title was used 10 years ago by Robbie Williams:

It was a fairly good pop release, featuring Let me Entertain You and Strong:

The next is more mellow:

However, back to that cover photo: maybe some of this blog's astute readers can help understand what another of photo in the CD book was about. Does this cover art relay a message, and does that message relate to the POTUS in any way?

Allah admits he is 'a horrifying candy-ass'

And about time, too. The occasion? The escalating war between Steve Schmidt and Sarah Palin. As I point out in the Hot Air comments, my paleocon nemesis Clark Stooksbury and I unwittingly played a signficant role in this strange little saga. (Reports of ghostly laughter, apparently emanating from the vicinity of Forest Hills Cemetery and clearly audible as far away as Collegedale and Ringgold, could not be confirmed.)

Meanwhile, also in the comments, I remind Hot Air's Christian readers that Allah seems to have a healthy sense of humor about himself and understands blogging as a commercial enterprise. There's something about the profit motive that can unite people despite their disagreements.

Kind of weird finding myself as the lynchpin holding together this unlikely alliance, the coalition known as . . . The Flemish Menace!

UPDATE: A friend just mentioned to me Thurday's profile of Lynn Vincent in the Politico, which amounts to free advertising for Donkey Cons: Sex, Crime, and Corruption, the favorite book of Adrienne's Catholic Corner. I'm hurt and disappointed that my good buddy Ben Smith didn't feel the need to call me and ask about Lynn -- who speaks fluent Belgian, I should mention. (If you don't get these inside jokes, be grateful. The people who do get them are wiping coffee off their computer screens.)

Meanwhile, The Classical Liberal comments on John McCain's mission to destroy the GOP:
The Bailout Maverick and the rest of the Establishment, intend to continue moving left.
Funny, isn’t it? Considering the only excitement McCain’s campaign could drum-up last year, was from Sarah Palin. And she’s still more popular than he is.
This is classic Crazy Cousin John: He did exactly one thing right during the 2008 campaign, and has been regretting it ever since.

'Being called racist is the new black'

So said my cousin Brian Buchanan in a Facebook message last week. Brian still lives down home near Atlanta and, last time I heard, was working as a bar bouncer.

His dad "Buck" married my cousin Deb -- I still remember their wedding, a small ceremony at my Aunt Pat's Cobb County home. Buck had been studying engineering at Southern Tech in Marietta, and joined the Army. Buck worked at the White House during the 1970s (he knows Rosalyn Carter's Secret Service code-name) and served with the 101st Airborne during Operation Desert Storm before retiring with the rank of major.

Brian is 38 and -- pay attention, lovely ladies of Atlanta -- he's single. So if you ladies like your fellows big, strong and tattooed, make him your Facebook friend.

LGF still demonizing Malkin

"America Loses - Right Wings Blogs Celebrate"

That's the headline in the perverse domain of Mad King Charles:
Michelle Malkin and her commenters (and many other right wing bloggers) are dancing and celebrating this morning, because America lost its bid for the Olympics . . .
This completely puts the lie to the excuse that those who say they want Obama to fail really mean they want his policies to fail.
No, they want Obama himself to fail, and if that means America fails too, they're just fine with that.
The Sullyfication of Lizardland continues. While Charles Johnson's thirst for vengeance against me obviously explains my personal interest in his decline into irrelevance -- LGF is now just another unreadably worthless liberal site -- it is important to note what a despicably dishonest creature Johnson is.

If I am a "white supremacist blogger," as Johnson now insists, why didn't he see fit to warn anyone about this prior to my coming to the defense of Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer and others after Charles had smeared them?

Charles Johnson deliberately misformed his readers about Geller et al. for months before I first spoke out against his cruel and unjust defamation. The one thing he doesn't want deluded LGF readers to discover is the true history of his vicious campaign of lies against conservatives who supported European opponents of jihad.

Johnson smeared Geller over and over again, and savagely maligned anyone who defended her. It was the sheer sadism of Johnson's assault on her that caused me to speak out.

I've got more important things than the Sissy King of Lizardland to worry about today, but you ask Pamela what she suffered because of Charles Johnson's mendacious evil. He called her a "Poster Girl for Eurofascists"! Just like he called Jim Hoft a "borderline illiterate bigot."

Cowardly liars can hurt you, but they cannot destroy you, if you'll stand up to their bullying and call them what they are. They can't survive the truth.
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.
-- Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 KJV
Have faith and courage, and be assured that the dishonest and ungodly will ultimately destroy themselves.

My son, the rock star Twitter king?

Yes, it's true, soon-to-be-legendary rock guitarist Robert Stacy McCain Jr. is on Twitter.

Bob's got my arrogance, whereas his twin brother Jim has my charm. This difference probably explains why Bob devotes so much time to his guitar thing, while Jim -- who plays both guitar and bass -- isn't so much into the Young Rock God trip. Jim can actually talk to girls, whereas Bob lazily stands around expecting to be admired for his awesomeness.

Being a parent is an educational experience about the decisive role of temperament in human affairs . . .

'Chicago is out? . . . Chicago is out?'

Like Allah says, "Comedy gold."

Me on Twitter:

I'm thinking the influence of the Vlaams Belang-dominated Belgian delegation to the IOC was decisive.

Between the Flemish Menace and ultranationalist fascist sympathizers like Pamela Geller, Chicago was doomed.

If you don't get that joke, don't worry. If you do get that joke, I apologize for the coffee spew all over your computer.

UPDATE: The suspiciously Flemish-looking Michelle Malkin says to "prepare for recriminations." Yeah, liberals are already trying to blame Republicans, but if I live to be 56, I'll be enjoying the recriminations with bikini-clad cuties on the beach in Rio, covering the 2016 Olympics. (Just warning regular readers, so you can get ready for the Mother Of All Tip-Jar Rattles.)

Speaking of bikini-clad cuties, Dan Riehl advises, "Next time, send Sarah Palin." Or, as the former Alaska governor is now known to Charles Johnson, Sharmuta and the LGF gang, "a close associate of Vlaams Belang sympathizer Stacy McCain."

VIDEO: Judge James Garrison explains the economic plight of Eastern Kentucky

You meet the finest people in the world at the Huddle House in Manchester, Ky. When my readers learned I was en route to Clay County, one commenter told me to talk to former county judge/executive James Garrison. What a coincidence that he walked into the Huddle House where I was meeting Tuesday evening with Manchester Enterprise news director Morgan Bowling, who is the judge's cousin (of course, practically everybody is cousins in Clay County).

Before I left Wednesday, I made sure to interview Judge Garrison, who gave me a tour of his 600-acre property, where I watched him feed the catfish at his commercial fish-farming operation and recorded this brief video:

As my commenter told me, if you close your eyes, it's like listening to the legendary Southern comedian Jerry Clower. Judge Garrison is extremely knowledgeable of regional history and, in his down-home vernacular, expresses a very well-informed -- and essentially libertarian -- understanding of how federal regulation has hindered the economic development of the community he loves.

If there is an "anti-government" sentiment in Clay County, it's not as if they've got no legitimate grievance. Thomas Sowell or Friedrich Hayek would understand. So would Rand Paul, whom Judge Garrison is supporting in the 2010 Republican Senate primary.

David Brooks hates you

Just in case you didn't know it before, his snooty just-so story about talk-radio hosts raging in "spittle-flecked furor" ought to tell you what profound contempt David Brook has for conservatives. Here's his walk-off:
The rise of Beck, Hannity, Bill O’Reilly and the rest has correlated almost perfectly with the decline of the G.O.P. But it’s not because the talk jocks have real power. It’s because they have illusory power, because Republicans hear the media mythology and fall for it every time.
Speaking of mythology, Brooks' history of the 2008 primary campaign is spectacularly wrong. John McCain got just 33% of the South Carolina GOP primary vote. In that winner-take-all primary, McCain barely beat the evangelical populist Huckabee (30%). And that was only because:
  1. McCain had name ID and had been organizing non-stop in the state since 2001;
  2. The "Anybody But McCain" vote was badly divided;
  3. Southerners respect military service;
  4. Romney was hurt by his Mormonism and "flipflopper" reputation; and
  5. Republican primary voters tend to be older, and McCain owned the Clueless GOP Geezer Vote.
None of this had anything to do with Rush Limbaugh, and had everything to do with the failure of Republican Party leadership. This was why, on Election Night 2008, I wrote "You Did Not Lose," attempting to explain to conservative voters that the defeat of John McCain was not a failure of conservatism. McCain finished with only 47% of the total GOP primary vote, and was never the choice of the party's conservative grassroots core:
While the Democratic struggle between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton captured all the headlines during the primary season, few pundits noticed the massive Republican resistance to McCain's nomination.
For example, on Super Tuesday, Feb. 5, McCain got 33 percent of the primary vote in Missouri, 32 percent in Tennessee and Georgia; in caucuses that day, he got 22 percent in Minnesota and 19 percent in Colorado. McCain's share of the total Republican primary vote through Super Tuesday was only 39 percent.
Nor did the resistance end after McCain's most formidable rival, Mitt Romney, called it quits Feb. 7. As late as May 20 -- by which time McCain had been the de facto nominee for more than two months -- 28 percent of voters in the Kentucky GOP primary cast their ballots for other candidates or voted "uncommitted."
Nov. 4, 2008, was Crazy Cousin John's personal defeat, as well as a decisive repudiation of the Republican Party's leaders, who had utterly abandoned the legacy of Ronald Reagan in favor of the "compassionate conservative" agenda of Bushism, which was nothing but Brooksian "National Greatness" in evangelical drag with a Texas drawl.

If I weren't working on a long article about my Kentucky trip, I could write 5,000 words about this perverse classic of Brooksian myth-making:
For no matter how often their hollowness is exposed, the jocks still reweave the myth of their own power. They still ride the airwaves claiming to speak for millions. They still confuse listeners with voters. And they are aided in this endeavor by their enablers. They are enabled by cynical Democrats, who love to claim that Rush Limbaugh controls the G.O.P. They are enabled by lazy pundits who find it easier to argue with showmen than with people whose opinions are based on knowledge. They are enabled by the slightly educated snobs who believe that Glenn Beck really is the voice of Middle America.
"Slightly educated snobs" -- exactly which graduate of Jacksonville (Ala.) State University do you have in mind there, Mr. Brooks?

This endless anti-"populist" crusade for Big Government Republicanism has been a constant of Brooksianism since the neurasthenic geek first started pushing his disastrously influential "National Greatness" idiocy in 1997. That blunderheaded misconception of misinformed thumbsucking earned Brooks membership in The Republicans Who Really Matter, and he's been toiling diligently to destroy the Party of Reagan ever since.

Read my lips: David Brooks is not a conservative! He never has been and never will be. His entire career has been devoted to using his influence over the Republican Party elite to prevent conservatives from exercising influence over the party's direction.

Meanwhile, speaking of Republicans who have never been conservative, Politico reports that "Sen. John McCain is working behind-the-scenes to reshape the Republican Party in his own center-right image." And it ain't going to happen.

If the GOP moves leftward -- which is what the phrase "center-right" means -- it will implode or become irrelevant as an electoral force, because a majority of Americans still want what Phyllis Schlafly described so eloquently in 1964: A Choice, Not an Echo.

Back home; writing today

Got home at 4 p.m. yesterday, went to bed about 4:30 p.m., and woke up at 6:30 p.m. because the kids were arguing over . . . well, something. So I sat down and wrote 2,000 words about my Kentucky trip, not even finishing the first part, and went back to bed about midnight.

Woke up at 8 a.m. and my wife was getting ready to leave for Ohio with three of the kids -- the 17-year-old twin boys and 6-year-old Reagan -- which will leave me here with 10-year-old Jefferson and 8-year-old Emerson for the weekend.

Saturday night is homecoming at River Valley High, where son Bob's girlfriend Portia goes to school and this trip back to my wife's hometown is sort of a birthday gift for Bob. He and twin brother Jim turned 17 the day I left for Kentucky, so this Ohio trip will be cool for them.

Now, I've got to sit down and write, write, write. Dan Riehl noticed a while ago my tendency to write long-form stuff on the blog, which is unusual, since blogs are usually a short-form medium. But if all you ever do is short stuff, it becomes a habit and you get rusty at doing longer writing.

The thing that's addictive about blogging is the instant feedback loop. You write, you publish, other bloggers link your post, people comment, you watch the Site Meter for reaction. There is a spontaneity and immediacy to the experience -- the virtual community, etc. -- which is hard to explain to someone who isn't a blogger.

By comparison, long-form writing is rather lonesome. It's just you and the manuscript, with no feeedback. Being both a blogger and a writer, then, allows me to toggle back and forth between the two experiences. I write columns and articles for various publications, while taking occasional breaks to comment on developing news stories.

However, this Kentucky trip is going to take a long time to write. As I wrote (somewhere) the other day, I've got at least 10,000 words worth of notes, etc., and given my usual 400-word-per-hour rate of composition, that's 25 hours of work, of which I've completed five hours. If I want to have the whole thing complete by Sunday -- before my notes "go cold" and my memory of the experience begins to fade -- I'll have to keep at it pretty steady for the next couple of days. Two 10-hour days of writing, you see.

All of this to explain why, as much as I'd love to comment on Dave Letterman's startling confession, I'll have to try to avoid such distractions. Not entirely, of course -- you could, for example, understand why a habitual philanderer would be so hostile to the happily married mother of five, Sarah Palin -- but I've got more important work to do.

Among the important work that must be done is to thank the people who hit the tip jar to pay for the Kentucky trip. (Read my blogging about the Sparkman case and my Kentucky trip.) I've gotten waaaaay behind on my thank-you notes to tip-jar hitters. If I can ever find a good blog intern, I mean to fix that . . .

HillBuzz just isn't that excited about a Chicago Olympics

by Smitty

We have a gorgeous City, but we just aren't able to handle this kind of event because of the greed and corruption of our elected officials.
They also include an address to email the IOC to express support for Rio.

As a thought experiment, what if Caracas was competing? How would the POTUS's narcissism interact with his foreign policy if Chicago fell late in the game to thuggish rulers? Would the presidential head 'splode?

Little Miss Attila links a HillBuzz follow-up.

'It’s sad when brains become petrified'

So says Mad King Charles, endeavoring to cast his insane peregrinations as evidence of open-mindness, after Tim Blair documented the aforesaid pregegrinations.

We await the LGF denunciation of Tim Blair as a white supremacist ultra-nationalist fascist sympathizer.

Funny, I never thought of "Blair" as a Flemish name . . .

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Even My Wife Admits This Is Cool

by Smitty

Do you ever take turns remembering fun stuff that happened a couple of decades back with somebody?

I turned up the Howlin' Hobbit on YouTube recently, and he happened to mention that he had no copy of his first release.

Rooting about (packrat that I am) I managed to come up with it, scan the J-card, rip the tracks to .mp3 and email them to him. The choice to do it in two pieces had to do with the attachment limit on Gmail.

Thus, nearly two decades later, did a prodigal recording return to papa. Here is a follow-up post.

I vaguely remember forgetting writing him the fan mail, but it's all quite pleasant to recall. Hopefully I'll make it back to the Emerald City and catch him live again.

Probably an Accident

by Smitty

My head nearly 'sploded at seeing Eugene Volokh on the Huffington Post:

They'll quickly realize that he's sane and quit using his work, I'm confident.

Sarah Palin AutoMotivator

by Smitty

Troglopundit and Fishersville Mike have got the AutoMotivator warmed up. OK, kids, school's in session:

Of course, I'm waiting for Stacy's resurrection so that he can put the Amazon pre-order link on this blog.

And how do we not link the excellent Jimmie Bise on this topic: "Palin's Book Makes Number One on Amazon; Left-Wingers Make Number Two in Their Jeans"

Defending the Dream Summit

It starts tonight with a "Welcome Reception" at the Crystal Gateway Marriott and, as usual, I'm not invited.

So, you're probably asking yourself, which bloggers did get invited? Hugh Hewitt, Ed Morrissey, John Hawkins, Melissa Clouthier and Katie Favazza.

Because, unlike me, they're important.

UPDATE: 'Neither confirm nor deny'

Stopped here on my way back from Kentucky to check on the blog and update the latest on the Sparkman murder investigation. The most important development is that law enforcement officials are coming under increased pressure either to solve the case or to start explaining why they haven't solved it.

There is evidently a killer or killers at large in eastern Kentucky. Given the brutal nature of Bill Sparkman's death, the particularly stubborn official insistence on a "neither confirm nor deny" stance toward key details of the case is beginning to annoy people in Clay and Laurel counties, including public officials.

Because I'm once again using the lobby computer at a hotel -- the new Holiday Inn Express here beside the I-79 exit is very nice -- and because my wife is already angry at my delayed return, there is only time for a brief update, highlighting key points.

  • First, I don't know if this has been reported anywhere else, but according to today's edition of the Manchester (Ky.) Enterprise, Kentucky State Police and other investigators re-visited the Hoskins Cemetery last Friday, Sept. 25. According to the Enterprise, investigators thoroughly re-examined the remote Clay County site, about 12 miles east of Manchester, where Sparkman's body was found Sept. 12. And, of course, officials refused to confirm that report. However, if the Enterprise staff doesn't know what goes on in that neck of the woods, nobody does.
  • Second, Sparkman's 19-year-old son Josh -- whom Sparkman adopted as an infant -- is furious that police are refusing to rule out suicide as a cause of his father's death. However, the state medical examiner has officially confirmed that Sparkman died of asphyxiation.
  • Third, readers interested in this case should be aware that many people in east Kentucky are angry at the Associated Press -- and whoever the AP's source was -- for an article last week which the Kentucky State Police spokesman, Don Trosper, has characterized as "misinformation" that is "damaging to our investigation."
It is strongly suspected that this misinformation came from a U.S. Justice Department source, either in Washington or Louisville. Considering that it is because of the FBI's involvement that other officials are under "marching orders" not to discuss the case, if the AP's bad source was federal . . .

Well, perhaps I don't need to point out the irony: The feds are, on the one hand, big-dogging the investigation and forbidding anyone else from talking about it while, on the other hand, some federal source is feeding wrong information to the AP. At least, that's the very strong suspicion of people familiar with the situation.

Tempus fugits, and I really need to get home -- we're a one-car family, and my wife needs to go buy groceries -- but I want to take a minute to address a recent troll problem here. Some persistently "anonymous" critic has repeatedly attempted to leave comments derogating my reporting abilities. At one point, this critic accused me of being a "cub" reporter.

How many times do I have to repeat myself about this? Just because you don't know what I'm doing, don't assume that I don't know what I'm doing. I've got a file folder full of notes. I've got photos and recorded interviews. I've got the phone numbers of plenty of sources. There are sources I've interviewed whom I have neither named nor quoted, and there are good reasons for everything I've done or haven't done in covering this story.

Because I've sometimes used my personal blog to highlight particular incidents or personalities -- like Kentucky's most amazing journalist, Morgan Bowling -- does not mean that this is The Big Story. What I've tried to do is to give readers some insight into how I do my job and the wonderful people I've met along the way.

Considering that it has now been 20 days since Sparkman's body was discovered, there is the distinct possibility that this investigation won't produce The Big Story for a long time, if ever. (Remember that Morgan Bowling's father was gunned down 16 years ago, a crime that is still a cold case in the files of the Kentucky State Police.)

Which is to say I didn't feel any real competitive pressure in recent days, so I've done the blog updates as I have, rather than trying to "chase" other media. Yet because of the depth of my work during my first reporting trip to East Kentucky, I'll be ready when The Big Story breaks. Also, I've talked to other journalists -- as a matter of fact, I just got off the phone with one long-time associate whom I won't name -- who might like to come along on my next trip to Clay County.

So, to our anonymous troll, I would like to explain that you don't know what tips I've checked out, or how I've checked them out. Those reports that a journalist rocked the house Wednesday during karaoke at a pub in Richmond, Ky.? That the man who sang a Hank Thompson classic made inquiries which led him to the vicinity of Main and Limestone streets in Lexington, Ky., in the wee hours this morning?

Sorry. I can neither confirm nor deny.

PS.: Yes, I know the headline says "murder," and the police say they haven't ruled out other causes. But reasonable people can conclude that when a man is found dead, blindfolded, gagged and bound with duct tape -- naked except for his socks -- suicide and accident are nearly as far-fetched as "natural causes." Somebody killed Bill Sparkman, and excuse me for not pretending we don't know that. This is my personal blog, so please feel free to convene the Blogger Ethics Committee and expel me from the club.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Remember: the winning number is between 8 and 10

by Smitty

IX-nay ompetitition-cay oting-vay!

This blog has not only written the rulebook on getting megahits, but has linked hard, fast and continuously in shameless self...obedience.

So when you vote for the winning entry in the "Iowahawk Endowment for the Arts $33.18 Steel Cage Art Death Match", keep the cube root of 729 and the one who links you most in mind.

Also remember: this blog has produced such atrocities as:Whether or not this blog wins the coveted prize, there will likely be more shameless acts of irresponsible literary vandalism in the offing. However, if you vote for me and leave your name in the comments, I promise to use the letters of your name in that of a future story character's moniker.

Also, voting for a an entry whose number equals the count of squares on a tic-tac-toe board, along with a fiver, is likely to get you a cup o' joe at most coffee shops.

So ya got that goin' for ya. Which is nice.

Attention: Rule 5 fans of Kelsee Brown

MANCHESTER, Ky. -- Remember the 19-year-old Democrat who got misrepresented in the MSM as typical of gummint-hatin' Clay Countians here in the region of Kentucky now notorious as Lower Glennbeckistan?

Well, it seems Kelsee is even less typical than anyone, myself included, had any cause to suspect. Which is to say, guys -- I hate to break you hearts -- but the beautiful Miss Brown is . . . playing for the other team.

Yup. And it was strange how this was revealed. You see, I'd gone to visit Judge Garrison, who owns a catfish farm about six miles outside Manchester, near Gray Fork Baptist Church. Judge Garrison, who was Clay County's judge executive for 13 years, is a humorous and insightful personality -- a real character -- who can talk for hours about the economic history of eastern Kentucky.

The Judge got to talking, showing me the fish ponds, and it was near sundown when I finally left. Coming back into Manchester, I planned to make a pit stop at McDonald's and then hit the road. But they had their parking lot blocked off for repaving, so I decided to make my pit stop at the Huddle House instead.

Having availed myself of the facilities, I sat down in a booth with my notes, a stack of local newspapers and a road atlas, to review my trip and plan my route home. Ordered coffee and hashbrowns. Then, when business slowed to nothing, Kelsee came over and sat across from me in the booth, just to chat about the video that made her semi-famous.

"Wow, it must have been tough being an Obama supporter in Corbin," I said, having learned during my visit here that her hometown has a reputation as a hotbed of racism.

She laughed and said, "Yeah, I was always the rebel in my family." And, as she then explained, her family is quite prominent in Corbin.

Hmmm. "So why'd you have to leave town?" I asked.

Logical inference. Corbin is much larger than Manchester, and for a 19-year-old from an affluent Corbin family to be working the grill here . . . Well, my inference was correct.

"Honestly?" Kelsee said. "You really want to know?"

Sure. Why not?

"I'm gay. I came out in the seventh grade, but I knew I was gay since third grade."

My expression must have ill concealed my amazement. OK, she said she was a rebel, and I could think of several ways that might have caused trouble in Corbin, Ky., but . . . Well, I never would have guessed that.

She's not a bitter, angry man-hater, though. As she said, she just likes more feminine-type personalities. Which was kind of weird, in that she seemed to like me a lot. But we don't want to contemplate that sort of complex geometric distortion in the gaydar bounce-back pattern, do we?

No, we don't. I'm a happily married father of six, and anyone who suggests that this is some sort of overcompensation should be warned that my Samoan attorney is notoriously sensitive about potentially libelous defamation. It's OK for me to call myself a "neo-Confederate lesbian" -- that's just self-referential humor -- but woe unto any Little Green Loser who doesn't get the joke.

Once again, it was that moment when a journalist must ask himself, "What Would Hunter S. Thompson Do?" And in this case, the answer was to say, "Well, I guess I'd better get rolling. Wife's expecting me Thursday morning . . . twelve-hour drive . . . nice to meet you, etc., etc."

You know something? I forgot to pay the bill. But I ran over here to the Manchester Regional Campus of Eastern Kentucky to file this final report before driving back, and now if I book it east out the parkway about 90 mph . . .

They'll never catch me. And Kelsee wouldn't dare press charges. Or would she?