a lovely sight

looking at my online banking summary, which includes my checking account, my savings account, my equity line of credit, and my credit card, i see something very pleasing.

my assets exceed my debts. my new heating and cooling system will have been paid off within a year of its installation, and i’ve not racked up any credit card debt.

helps that i don’t have a car payment, didn’t go on any expensive trips last year, and didn’t buy any new computers or vehicles.

of course, this will all be changing in the next few months, or should be changing, as i proceed with plans to fix the drainage issues around my house, possibly waterproof the basement, make changes to the kitchen and buy a new daily driver.

but for right now, i’ll bask.

Elizabeth Dole makes me IRATE.

I don’t know how I got on this mailing list, but on a regular basis I receive e-mails supposedly penned by Liddy Dole, NC Senator. D. says that her senate seat was what the Republican party gave her to keep her from continuing to run for President, and to keep it she has to toe the Republican party line. I don’t know if this is true, but the woman sure as hell does toe the party line. Today’s e-mail is probably the most egregious example; anyone with the slightest knowledge of the illegal wiretapping issue is catching on that these warrentless wiretaps are a) illegal, b) “useless,”:http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/02/04/AR2006020401373.html and c) unnecessary, since FISA, which has been on the books for years, was specifically designed for this situation, and even allows the goverment to obtain warrants _after the fact._

For a little perspective, Senate Judiciary Committee head Arlen Specter, for whom I’ve had no love in the past, “isn’t going to just rubber-stamp this one.”:http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060205/ap_on_go_co/domestic_spying to that i say, thank goodness. but i’m still waiting for Liddy Dole to grow a pair.

I’ll probably regret this, but I’m going to post her entire message here.

Dear Friend,

This week, the Senate is convening hearings on the National Security Agency’s terror surveillance program. These hearings will not only tell Americans more about this critical initiative, but will highlight the difference between Republicans and Democrats on issues of security. We will also learn how closely Senate Democrats follow the marching orders of liberal fringe groups like Moveon.org who irrationally oppose the program at the expense of our safety. I look forward to these hearings, and to finding out just where my Democrat colleagues stand on this important issue.

The terror surveillance program is one of our national security professionals’ most important tools in the battle to keep this nation safe. By intercepting and monitoring telephone conversations between Al Qaeda and their terrorist operatives in the United States, we are preventing attacks on our homeland and keeping Americans out of harm’s way. We can’t wait until terrorist plans are in motion to try and thwart them. We need to know what terrorists want to do before they set out to do it–and the terror surveillance program allows us to do just that. Simply put, this program saves lives.

Yet some head-in-the-sand Democrats don’t seem to see it that way, and even if they do, are so blinded by their dislike for the President that they cannot bring themselves to support the initiative lest it be construed as support for George Bush. So they resort to outlandish charges that the President is breaking the law, that the program is unconstitutional, that it threatens our civil liberties. Taking their cue from their party’s fringe–a fringe, unfortunately, that is taking increased control of the Democrat party every day–some have even raised the notion of impeaching the President. To dignify these calls would be beneath any serious person, but to ignore them would be dangerous. If Moveon.org and Howard Dean get to call the shots when it comes to our national security, this country is in big trouble. In their ideal world, we would have the ridiculous and unthinkable policy of hanging up when Al Qaeda calls.

The charge that the President is somehow breaking the law with this program is demonstrably false. Previous Presidents have authorized similar programs, and the Supreme Court has declared them constitutional. What’s more, it is widely held that during wartime, the President is granted increased powers in his capacity as Commander-in-Chief. When it comes to keeping Americans safe, the President has wide latitude to do what is necessary. That doesn’t mean he’s above the law, but it does mean that he’s above the frivolous attacks of disaffected liberals.

I understand the special place we all afford to our constitutionally protected rights, and that because of our love of these rights some Democrats think they can score political points by portraying the terrorist surveillance program as a threat. They misquote our founders and feign indignation that the Administration would act so callously towards our freedoms. But the reality is that this program protects the very freedoms Democrats allege it curtails. To listen to some partisans, you’d think the NSA had nothing better to do than listen to Aunt Jenny calling her niece to wish her a happy birthday. Liberal demagoguery on this issue not only poisons what should be a healthy debate about our national security, but also needlessly injects partisanship where it does not belong.

This week’s hearings are critical to determining whether this nation will confront terror with our best or with political posturing. The terror surveillance program keeps terror off our shores, and is saving American lives every day. We cannot let the radical left dictate our national security policy. I hope that at the hearings Democrats ignore the directives of their party’s fringe and do what is right to keep America safe.

A co-worker and I were talking about this stuff today and getting completely depressed over the mess that Bush & Co. have made of things. So many people dead in Iraq, deficit, screwed up health care, screwed up environment.

We concocted a little fantasy scenario to cheer ourselves up: Edwards & Obama in ’08.

i like the rain

the sound of rain just makes everything seem nice, so long as you are in a nice snug place.

i hope that punxsutawney phil is right, and that we’re going to have another six weeks of what passes for “winter” around here.

i’ve been thinking about global warming a lot since i blogged that article about the NASA scientist. i want to research a post on vehicles that put the smallest amounts of greenhouse gasses into the environment (besides hybrids– i know hybrids are the best of all commonly available vehicles for emissions).

i’ve been talking to a lot of people about their experiences in treating a cat with hyperthyroid. it’s very common. as of today, i am coming around to the idea that irradiating my cat might not be such a good idea for his long term health. i’ve now spoken with two people who had thier cat die 1-2 years after the treatment, one from lymphoma, and one from undiagnosed causes that might have been cancer. most people choose medication.

tonight i went to the new thai restaurant on university (across from q shack) with d&s. tasty. decent service except that the waiter brought us back $10 less change than he should have, and s. was nice enough to deal with straightening it out.

this weekend, i’m off to Va. M. & Xta are going to watch over moseman, but i think he’ll be just fine.

Which Serenity character are you?

Your results:
You are Kaylee Frye (Ship Mechanic)

Kaylee Frye (Ship Mechanic)
80%
Derrial Book (Shepherd)
55%
Dr. Simon Tam (Ship Medic)
45%
Zoe Washburne (Second-in-command)
40%
River (Stowaway)
40%
Malcolm Reynolds (Captain)
35%
Wash (Ship Pilot)
35%
Inara Serra (Companion)
30%
Alliance
25%
Jayne Cobb (Mercenary)
15%
A Reaver (Cannibal)
5%
You are good at fixing things.
You are usually cheerful.
You appreciate being treated
with delicacy and specialness.
Click here to take the Serenity Firefly Personality Test