Monday, March 24, 2008

We've Crossed Another Sad Milestone...

How many time have we heard this? A roadside bomb killed four U.S. soldiers in Baghdad on Sunday... How many times do we have to hear it? Well, it looks like it's going to be a while. A grim milestone came on the same day that rockets and mortars pounded the U.S.-protected Green Zone - pushing the overall American death toll in the five-year war to at least 4,000. Navy Lt. Patrick Evans, a military spokesman, expressed condolences to all the families who have lost a loved one in Iraq, saying each death is "equally tragic." "There have been some significant gains. However, this enemy is resilient and will not give up, nor will we," he said. "There's still a lot of work to be done." Last year, the U.S. military deaths spiked along with the Pentagon's "surge" — the arrival of more than 30,000 extra troops trying to regain control of Baghdad and surrounding areas. The mission was generally considered a success, but the cost was evident as more and more soldiers returned home in flag draped caskets. When will it end?

The death toll has seesawed since, with 2007 ending as the deadliest year for American troops at 901 deaths. That was 51 more deaths than 2004, the second deadliest year for U.S. soldiers. The milestones for each 1,000 deaths — while an arbitrary marker — serve to rivet attention on the war and have come during a range of pivotal moments. When the 1,000th American died in September 2004, the insurgency was gaining steam. The 2,000-death mark came in October 2005 as Iraq voted on a new constitution. The Pentagon announced its 3,000th loss on the last day of 2006 — a day after Saddam Hussein was hanged and closing a year marked by rampant sectarian violence. The deaths taken by U.S. soldiers in Iraq, however, are far less than in other modern American wars. This should make us feel better? In Vietnam, the U.S. lost on average about 4,850 soldiers a year from 1963-75. In the Korean war, from 1950-53, the U.S. lost about 12,300 soldiers a year.

Commanders often say there is no guarantee the trends will continue. They would like to see the Iraqis take more of a front-line role in the fighting, but their ability to operate without American support could still be years away. So folks, sit back and get ready for more. Until we change our "strategy", whatever that may me, we're going to be hearing, "A roadside bomb killed..." for a long time. To the people on the front line...Thank You. To the grieving families...I am truly sorry. To our President...this has got to end soon!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

A Sucker Is Born Every Minute! No That Sucker Just Got $23.3 Million!

Are you sick and tired of all these anti-cold, self-help, quick weight loss, with Hoodia and Ginseng crap that is marketed on late night cable and the internet? Drug marketing is completely out of control. Companies make claims they cannot back up, and consumers buy the products under the assumption the company is telling the truth. Without fail, evidence arises that the drug does not serve the purpose the company claims it does and even worse it can cause severe damage to anyone that takes it. The company responsible for the marketing and distribution of the drug is then given a slap on the wrist by the government, and they go on about their business. Well now, and finally, Airborne Health Inc. has reached a $23.3 million in a class action lawsuit against the company. The lawsuit claimed the company committed false advertising by suggesting that their product would eliminate the common cold. Guess What? I was right!

According to those heading up the class action lawsuit, there is no credible data to support the notion that Airborne prevents colds. You can find out more about the settlement by clicking here! Instead, they assert, the tablets are nothing more than deceptively marketed vitamins. Airborne was developed by a now very rich second grade teacher, Victoria Knight-McDowell, who grew tired of catching ailments from her students and decided to catch in on being an overworked second grade teacher. She had no solid medical experience whatsoever, and unfortunately neither did those conducting the product's clinical trials. Hmmmm.

Airborne has never provided an instant cure to any cold, but taking it always seemed to alleviate some people symptoms. However, in many clinical trials some people taking placebos also claim to feel better. Wellness could be nothing more than a mental state of being. Got that? Psychology? In most cases, taking a hit of Airborne, your mind assumed it was working and it diverted my attention from the symptoms. In other words, it didn't really cure anything, but instead it was the idea that it could cure people that made suckers think they were feeling better. Check out this little diddy from the Airborne website:

The discovery that Airborne did not provide the efficacy that its commercials implied points to much larger problem that is being faced by the American public is nothing new. There are people who believe anything they see on TV! Consumers need to stop watching those late night infomercials and conduct their own research before taking any drug. Drug companies are spending record amount on advertising in the hopes you will purchase their product. The unfortunate truth is that they are concerned only with profits, not your health. And for Victoria Knight-McDowell, $23.3 million is nothing compared to what she probably has made with this false, deceptive, crappy product!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

In A New York Minute: Sex, Sex, More Sex And Utter Stupidity!

Where else but in New York? The place where a Governor resigns due to a $3000 plus night with a ho! A place where the new Governor gets sworn in to standing ovations and then it's reported that he's had an extramarital affair. Where else but New York? Well now, from the bizarre lawsuit file comes this New York lawsuit recently files where a businessman claims that he was injured when a stripper giving him a lap dance swiveled and smacked him in the face with the heel of her shoe. Okay folks, do you really wanna go here or what?

It seems Stephen Chang, a securities trader, said in court papers filed Friday that he was at the Hot Lap Dance Club near Madison Square Garden and was getting a paid lap dance when the accident occurred early Nov. 2, 2007. According to the lawsuit, as the dancer swung around, the heel of her shoe hit him in the eye, causing him "serious injuries." A man who identified himself as the manager of the Hot Lap Dance Club said he was unaware of the accident or the state Supreme Court lawsuit. The club's lawyer, Stephen Ateshoglou, did not immediately return a call. On its Web site, the club describes itself as the "Playboy Mansion of Manhattan party lofts." The site says admission is $50 plus a one-time club membership fee of $10 for newcomers. Lap dances cost around $40, plus admission, according to the Web site. You see Governor Spitzer, you can get your rocks off for $40 and still have a job the next morning!

You know, there are some lawsuits that are so stupid and taxing to our justice system that they just shouldn't happen. This is one of them. Besides the fact that most people in their right mind wouldn't publicly admit to going to a strip club for a lap dance, but to sue, in court, for an injury during a lap dance, makes me ask that one Dr. Phil question, "What were you thinking?" Ahhh, I Love New York!

Monday, March 17, 2008

A Part Of American History Is Dying Away But Now We Can Save It!

Imagine trying to learn to write a letter for the first time if you were from somewhere so remote that you didn't have any background with the tools...the first thing you'd need is a piece of paper and a pen. What about a pen? Uh, you have to take the cap off first. Ok, now write "Dear Blah Blah Bla" on the paper. Wait, you want to rotate the paper so that the short side is at the top and the long side comes towards you and then write a bunch more hand! Ok, we've finished the letter! We're are done with the letter, but now we have to send it. We need to put the letter in an envelope - a piece of paper that is all folded up to hide and protect the letter. Now seal the envelope by licking the paper here and folding it over. Then we still need to address the mail so that the postman knows who should get the envelope. Now we need to look up the address in the address book. We put the street address on its own line, then the city and state and ZIP code. Then we need to put our return address in the upper left-hand corner of the envelope. Now we gotta find a stamp. Never mind why. You need to put it in the upper right hand corner. We're almost there. But how do you think the letter is going to get to our intended recipient? Did you think it was just going to magically leap from the desk and get there? We need to take it somewhere that the Post Office can find a mailbox. You see, letter-writing is hard.

But now it's time to switch from e-mail to free mail. In an attempt to encourage letter-writing, the post office is offering to let people mail a card to a friend for free. Until March 31, people can get a free card, postage included, which they can use to send a message to a friend. Home Box Office is covering the cost. The cable network is promoting its miniseries on John Adams, much of which is based on the letters of the second American president and his wife, Abigail. The free cards are available at by clicking on Free John Adams Greeting Card. Only one card is allowed to each letter sender.

Email is more time efficient than snail mail. Oh yeah, you can send overnight deliveries but what's the point when you can send an email and send the same information in just a matter of seconds? The only advantage I see in snail mail is if you are sending a package of some sort. Obviously, you can't send a box of cuban cigars through the Internet. There are more upsides to email though. Take greeting cards, for instance. Through email, you can send a Flash equipped greeting card in many cases for free! Oh, sure, you showed you cared by paying $3.75 for the Hallmark greeting, but if it truly is the thought that counts, you should be allowed to get away with being a cheapskate.

Sure, email is a great way to instantly send a message, but it is extremely impersonal. When you email someone, IF YOU TYPE IN ALL CAPS IT IS CONSIDERED YELLING. But those who are computer illiterate may offend someone if they don't understand the rules of the internet. It's nice to see the handwriting of people you may not have seen in a while. Just knowing that someone took the time to sit down and write to me makes me feel so loved. You can also include things in letters such as pictures, newspaper clippings, etc. I know that with the latest technology you are also able to send these things over the web, but the quality is not nearly as good as the real thing. Imagine how it would feel to never receive a traditional card on your birthday! This is what may happen if people stop using the postal system.

Today, it's easy to forget the value of a heartfelt, handwritten letter or card. But the written word holds a singular place in the American story. We can be inspired to revive this tradition, to return to the enduring power of the written word, and leave a legacy for future generations. In the past few years, the postal system has greatly suffered because of email. Everyone always complains about how the price of stamps keeps rising and rising, but that is due to lack of use. People are too lazy and quick to jump on the computer to send emails rather than go through the process of writing a letter and placing it in a mailbox. The Post Office and HBO are giving you the chance to do this for free at While email is a good way to keep in touch when you don't have a lot of time, try to use the traditional postal system every once in a while. Maybe you'll brighten up someone's day by giving them something other than a bill in their mailbox.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Discovering Insanity: I Can't Even Write Something This Bizarre!

This is a story that is creating quite a buzz.What emergency responders found when they entered the bathroom has left many in the town incredulous. "It's kind of shocking in a little town like this when you hear something like this," Ness City resident Orrin Oppliger said. "I didn't even know that Corey had a girlfriend...I guess that is another reason it was surprising." The buzz all revolves around what happened in a Ness City mobile home. Deputies say it there that 35-year-old Pam Babcock spent two years in her boyfriend's bathroom. The woman sat on her boyfriend's toilet for two years - so long that her body was stuck to the seat by the time the boyfriend finally called police. Okay, now I like to go in and read a magazine or two, but I think this lady just may have overdid it a bit!

Police received a call from the woman's boyfriend Corey McFarren saying his girlfriend wouldn't come out of the bathroom. When deputies arrived to, what else, a trailer, the woman was sitting on the toilet. Her muscles were severely weakened. Her skin had formed a bond with the toilet seat. Ouch! "We had to break the toilet seat away from the stool, and take her in with the toilet seat stuck to her," Whipple said. That toilet seat was eventually surgically removed, and doctors at the Medical Center say prolonged sitting, with the skin having prolonged contact with a surface likely caused her to become bonded with the seat.

As for the woman, deputies say she is refusing to cooperate with doctors and law enforcement. Pam Babcock will undergo a mental evaluation in hopes of shedding light on why this happened. Now, in a typical fashion, the boyfriend, a total idiot I'm sure, told police she had a phobia about leaving the bathroom and may not have left the bathroom in two years, although he's unsure how long she was in there. He said during that time, he brought her food, water, and clean clothes. McFarren called police to report that "there was something wrong with his girlfriend. She is an adult; she made her own decision. It was my fault I should have gotten help for her sooner; I admit that. But after a while, you kind of get used to it." Used to it? Hello? Is anybody in there?

The amazing part to all this is that people who knew the woman, yes, knew the woman, had not seen her for at least six years. Say what you want about the definition of "trailer trash" but these are two people, in my opinion, with diminished mental capacity. Of course, that's just my opion, I could be wrong. you decide!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Spending $4300 A Night Will Leave A Bad Taste In Your Mouth!

As long as there have been politicians and celebrities, there have been sex scandals. Anyone remember Thomas Jefferson? He had less interest in freeing the slaves than partying with them...and he wasn't the only one. And what about the women involved? Yesterday new details emerged about the call girl at the center of the prostitution scandal engulfing New York's governor, with a newspaper report identifying her as a 22-year-old aspiring musician from Manhattan. But good ol' Elliot, Client #9, is going to get a lot more, and I mean a lot more, than he bargained for by spending $4300 a night with this lady of the night!

The real name of the woman — identified as "Kristen" in court papers is Ashley Alexandra Dupre. Dupre's MySpace page provides a window into her life as she went from a broken home in New Jersey to a music career in the city. "What destroys me strengthens me" is the slogan next to a Dupre photograph. The photos show her at various places, including in a bikini on a boat in a tropical locale. The number of hits to the page soared by the tens of thousands after the story broke. Her Web site boasts a recording of a song, "What We Want." "I know what you want, you got what I want. I know what you need. Can you handle me?" she sings.

Dupre apparently appeared in federal court Monday as a witness in the case against four people accused of operating the Emperors Club VIP prostitution ring. Law enforcement officials identified the governor as a "Client 9" who had a Feb. 13 tryst with "Kristen" and paid her $4,300. Dupre told the newspaper she had slept very little since the allegations against Spitzer were revealed although the Mayflower hotel room in Washington that Spitzer got her in D.C. was extremely nice. "I have been alone. I have abused drugs. I have been broke and homeless. But, I survived, on my own. I am here, in NY because of my music," she wrote. If Spitzer was thinking, and was really looking for a babe with those qualifications, he could have just jumped in his car, cruised the boulevard like Hugh Grant and picked up something for around $20.00!

This story is going to be the butt (pun intended) of many jokes for weeks to come. The fallout because of the loss of his political career and his family is going to be tremendous. Let's just hope that it make those people for which we've given the trust to run our cities, towns, states and country's think twice before they go out and blow (again, pun intended) $4300 on a one-night stand!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

There's Some Potato Mashing Going On In Idaho!

Idaho. I thought it was just another state full of potatoheads. Well maybe, just maybe, I'm wrong about that. Seems like the state that made the potato famous is a lot more liberal than most of us may have thought. You would think that a state that is mostly made of Mormons wouldn't be making headline news. But it does! I mean, look at the whole Senator Lrry Craig thing. I guess that began the ball rolling and put the spotlight on this unique little place. Well in today issue of Discover Insanity, we get to see how progressive (and regressive at times) the State of Idaho has on...

A surprise birthday party for Dawn Wells, the actress who played Mary Ann on "Gilligan's Island," ended with a nearly three-hour tour of the Teton County sheriff's office and jail when the 69-year-old was caught with marijuana in her vehicle while driving home. Yes, our perky little Maryann is now serving six months' unsupervised probation for the crime. Cops pulled Wells over after noticing her swerve across the fog lines and center lines of State Highway 33 and repeatedly speed up and slow down. "I exited my patrol vehicle and immediately was able to smell a strong odor of burning marijuana," Officer Gutierrez wrote in his report. "As I approached the vehicle I noticed all four window (sic) of the vehicle were lowered and the female driver was not wearing a jacket." In an excuse we'd never expect to hear from our Little Buddy's little girl, Wells reportedly told police that she'd just given a ride to three hitchhikers and had dropped them off when they began smoking something. When Gutierrez searched the car, he found three half-smoked joints in the ashtray and console, according to the report. A second search after Wells' arrest netted a fourth half-smoked joint and two small cases used to store marijuana! After Wells failed a field sobriety test, she was handcuffed and taken to the sheriff's office. Perhaps they should have called her Mary Jane!

Larry Craig may not be happy about this one. After an open meeting, the Nampa Public Library board ruled in favor of removing two books containing sexual content. The Joy of Sex and Joy of Gay Sex are no longer on the shelves at the library. But the books are not banned completely. The books will still be available upon request in the library director's office. Officials say censorship is not their goal. The majority of those in favor of keeping the books argued that pulling them from the shelves was censorship. Those in favor of removing the books argued that they are too graphic for children and have no place in a family library. Assistant director Camille Wood says the Joy of Sex book series has been in circulation for 15 years and is owned by more than 500 libraries including those in Boise and Eagle while the Joy of Gay Sex was added to Nampa's collection in 2005 and was checked out seven times in the last year! Ahh the Nampa Public Library...a place of education and enlightenment!

So you see, there's more to Idaho than potatos...or is it potatoes. Seems we got a lot of sex, a little bit of weed and some gay sex going on there. Looks like they are being influenced by their neighboring states of Washington and Oregon. You can blame any of this on California. They call it the gems state...seems they've got a few gems of their own, if ya know what I mean!