Classic Biden. Via Free Beacon: Vice President Joe Biden was short on cash on a Thursday lunch visit to Italian hoagie chain Capriotti’s. Biden took three White House staffers on the trip to the Delaware-based restaurant. He nailed the order for everybody but needed to be bailed out when it came to paying for the food,
I totally agree with Quin’s compelling analysis of the strange “obstruction” ending to Game 3 of this year’s World Series. Which makes me think that the equally unprecedented pickoff ending to Sunday night’s Game 4 had to be poetic justice. What a wonderfully crazy turn of events. Alan Craig, who badly reinjured his sprained foot in scoring on the “obstruction” play, pinch hit what would have normally been at least a double in the bottom of the ninth on Sunday night. But because he couldn’t run, he was held to a single. Which necessitated a pinch-runner, young Kolten Wong. Announcer Tim McCarver, in his typical nagging way, questioned why Boston was even holding him on, since in a 4-2 game the runner at first wasn’t important. Maybe Wong was listening to his comments. Because next thing you know, the Boston reliever caught him leaning the wrong way and he was indeed picked off for the final out, leaving the tying run (and excellent hitter Carlos Beltran) at the plate. Of course, the camera and everyone else missed the unexpected quick throw over to first. But thanks to several other angles available, — especially from a camera in right field, which Fox showed only after coming back from a long commercial break — the beauty of that final out could be seen in many a replay. So now we’re even. Whoever wins two of the next three wins the Series. Boston has to be favored, what with the Games 6 and (if necessary) 7 scheduled for Fenway Park. Will poor Kolten Wong be allowed to make the trip back?
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Poetic Justice in St. Louis
Back in 2005, when George W. Bush was president, I was covering a Memorial Day ceremony in Washington for the American Forces Press Service. Bush was the featured speaker; and I noticed that the young man sitting next to me studiously refused to clap or applaud when the president spoke. I struck up a conversation with the young man and we had a good rapport. So when the ceremony was over, I asked my new friend why he didn’t clap or applaud. “Because I despise Bush,” he told me. “That’s fine,” I replied. “Every American has the right to oppose — or support — the president.” However, I added, “when you applaud the president at a Memorial Day ceremony, you’re not applauding the man per se; you’re applauding the office and the institution of the presidency. “You’re honoring the men and women whose sacrifice protects the very liberty you now embrace. A Memorial Day ceremony, after all, is a unifying civic event, not a partisan political event.” The young man’s girlfriend quickly agreed. “That’s what I told him, but he doesn’t understand!” she exclaimed. The girlfriend apologized and told me she was embarrassed by her boyfriend’s rudeness. The young man protested. “I understand what you’re saying,” he said, “but this is the best way to protest a president who I think has been awful. I’m not heckling him or shouting him down. I’m just sitting here politely and refusing to clap or applaud.” I mention all this because a similar incident took place yesterday, when three members of the 1972 Super Bowl Champion Miami Dolphins studiously refused to attend a White House ceremony honoring their team. The ’72 Dolphins, of course, are notable because they are the only undefeated Super Bowl champion. (The 2007 New England Patriots were undefeated in the regular seasons and throughout the playoffs, but lost the Super Bowl to the New York Giants.) Traditionally, every Super Bowl winner is invited to the White House to be honored by the president in a completely non-partisan and light-hearted civic event. Yet, for reasons that have never been explained, President Nixon failed to invite the ’72 Dolphins to the White House. Over at the Weekly Standard, Geoffrey Norman speculates that this was because the Dolphins beat Nixon’s favorite team, the George Allen-led Washington Redskins in Super Bowl VII. “Nixon was too busy calling plays,” joked Dolphin running back Mercury Morris. ( Legend has it that, in a 1971 playoff game, Allen ran a play recommended by his friend, Richard Nixon. The two men had known each other for decades, ever since Nixon was a California congressman and Allen was coaching at California’s Whittier College.) In any case, for whatever reason, Nixon snubbed the ’72 Dolphins. And now, 40 years later, President Obama was rectifying this historic wrong by inviting the team to the White House. It’s been a long time coming, but we’re finally getting there,” said Hall of Fame linebacker Nick Buoniconti. “It’s the right thing to do for the White House,” said quarterback Bob Griese. “We’re the only team that went undefeated. It’s an honor for us to go. It’s long overdue.” Yet, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel , three of the team’s players, veritable stars all — guard Bob Kuechenberg, center Jim Langer, and defensive tackle Manny Fernandez — refused to attend the event, citing political differences with the White House. “We’ve got some real moral compass issues in Washington. I don’t want to be in a room with those people and pretend I’m having a good time. I can’t do that,” said Langer. “I want to be careful, because mom said if you have nothing good to say about someone, then don’t say anything. I don’t have anything good to say about someone,” said Bob Kuechenberg. “It would be hypocritical of me to be there,” he added. “I don’t want to do that. I just don’t believe in this administration at all. So I don’t belong.” “I’ll just say my views are diametrically opposed to the president’s,” said Fernandez. “I hope everyone enjoys the trip who goes.” Now, I stand second to no one in my opposition to President Obama. He has been a disastrous president, whose policies will haunt this nation for decades. Worse yet, he has provided absolutely no leadership on the crucial issues that now confront out nation. He’s been asleep at the switch, infatuated with his own ideological fixations, such as government-run healthcare and American withdrawal from the world. But there is a time for political battle and there is a time to forgo political battle. And I’m sorry, but a White House event to honor the only undefeated Super Bowl champion is not a time for political battle. It is not a time to try and score political points, or to make a political statement. Instead, it is a time to transcend politics. It is a time to partake in a shared civic ceremony that honors athletic excellence unbounded by any political commitment or ideology. Make no mistake: I deeply share and respect the political disagreements that Messrs. Langer, Kuechenberg, and Fernandez have with President Obama. But with all due respect, they were wrong not to have attended the White House ceremony honoring them and their team. And they disgraced themselves and the ’72 Dolphins by snubbing President Obama. You don’t honor the man, but you do honor the office and the institution, and everything that it represents: “…one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” And that’s true whether the man occupying the office is George W. Bush or Barack Hussein Obama. Regardless, we are all Americans first. Photo: UPI
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These ’72 Dolphins Fumbled
Growing up in St. Louis you come to appreciate the Missouri River very much, especially in the dry season when it makes up almost 60 percent of the flow of the Mississippi River at the foot of the Arch. A recent trip to Bozeman , in southwest Montana’s Gallatin Valley, reminded me of the importance of this part of the country which forms the headwaters of North America’s longest river. The Gallatin River, along with the Jefferson, and Madison, is the origination point of the 2,342 mile journey for a water molecule making the trip to the Gateway City. Bozeman is a great town at an altitude of 4,820 feet, a population of just over 38,000 souls and a surrounding metro area (if one dare use that term in Montana) of 92,000. It was founded in 1864 by John Bozeman for whom the Bozeman Trail was named. Main Street is a very lively shopping, retail, and dining area with several bookshops. The main Catholic church in town, Holy Rosary, is on this street. I was able to attend Mass there on the Feast of the Assumption and was impressed by the size of the congregation at midday as well as the wonderful restoration work on both the interior and exterior, which appeared to be quite new. Bozeman is also a university town and home of Montana State University and the Fighting Bobcats, one of U.S. News and World Report ’s “best buys” for an undergraduate education. It is a land grant school and has enough acreage to justify that designation. Bozeman is a 90 minute drive from Yellowstone National Park , and other venues for trout fishing, rafting, hiking, and skiing. Arriving in the airport during the summer season, you find a very happy group of people, many carrying fly rods in tubular cases. Other times of the year, you will see hunters sporting their firearms, skiers their skis. I get a kick out of asking Montana natives, who either live or grew up on a ranch, how many acres they own. Nineteen thousand or 25,000 acres are not uncommon answers. Everyone, male and female, knows how to ride, hunt (with gun or bow and arrow), fish, and handle themselves pretty well in the outdoors. After several visits to Bozeman, I finally was able to visit the truly unique and impressive Museum of the Rockies just last week. Originally affiliated with the university, it now boasts an affiliation with the Smithsonian too. This place is all about dinosaurs, and is home to Dr. Jack Horner , the Museum’s famous Curator of Paleontology and science advisor to all of the Jurassic Park movies. Dr. Horner, a native of Montana, was the scientist who discovered Maiasaura (Greek for “caring mother lizard”), a large duck-billed dinosaur genus found in Montana that lived in the Upper Cretaceous Period 76.7 million years ago. It seems that Montana is blessed with an abundance of excavation sites yielding a treasure trove of paleontological finds. Indeed, many if not most of the exhibits at the Museum of the Rockies are built around and interpret the findings of Dr. Horner, his staff, and graduate students. Both Dr. Horner and Museum have staked out an impressive area for a regional museum that is hard to duplicate outside of a few of the great cities across the globe. I should also say a word about the Museum’s planetarium, where I indulged myself at two separate shows. It has been probably 30 plus years since I graced the entrance of one with little children in hand. What I missed in the interim was the digitalization of the presentations that has really expanded the demonstrative qualities of these showings, allowing for the graphic illustration of the galaxies and even an approximation of moving through the great void at the speed of light. OK, I’m a sucker for these kinds of things. I saw one show on the Bozeman night sky for that evening and one on the Aurora Borealis. The first one was narrated by a young astronomer with both a lot of information and the ability to make it intelligible even for this recovering lawyer. It seems that the University, the Museum, and the planetarium have a very good relationship with one another. And the food? Well, my host the Property and Environment Research Center , the original home of “free market environmentalism,” threw a pig roast that was outstanding, the pig weighing in at around 110 pounds. Establishments around town did a great job on a variety of steaks, and fish and other sea food were flown in from the left coast by one other restaurant I patronized. Ted Turner has a place on Main Street. Western Montana is a very special place, not just in and around Bozeman, the Bridger, and Tobacco Root Mountains, but also, say, at Glacier National Park . The writer Wallace Stegner used to write about our human need for a sense of place, a place we make our home. The good people of this region certainly display that sense and an affection for this wonderful part of America. Photo: Wikimedia Commons
The this New York Post attempts to do a puff piece for Huma Abedin — but it ends up showing how cynical and power-hungry she actually is. Just pay close attention to the timing: The worst moments included a Hamptons vacation 12 months ago when she suffered from painful isolation that put even more stress on their marriage. “All the parties they had once been invited to, Huma was now invited but Anthony wasn’t,” a family member said. “It was a difficult time.” Then it got worse. A month later, according to the couple, Weiner confessed to her that he had continued to text lewd pictures of himself. He said he also told her that he had frequent phone sex with one woman, 22-year-old Sydney Leathers, and sexting sessions with two others under the pseudonym Carlos Danger. So he confessed to the Sydney Leathers stuff 11 (12 minus 1) months ago. That would be around September 2, 2012. Let’s plug that into the timeline I gave you the other day : July 12, 2012 : Weiner starts talking to “Sydney Leathers”, according to this timeline from the site that broke the latest story. Quoting the girl: Anthony Weiner And I First started talking July 12, 2012. July 18, 2012: People Magazine puff piece appears: “It took a lot of work to get to where are are today, but I want people to know we’re a normal family,” says Abedin, 37. “Anthony has spent every day since [the scandal] trying to be the best dad and husband he can be,” she says of her husband, who does all the laundry. “I’m proud to be married to him.” If the timeline is accurate, then Huma was praising Weiner days after he admitted to her that he was still sexting. Now. Let’s just assume that the timing is a little off and Weiner confessed to her in late July or August rather than early July. We still have the rest of the timeline: July 19, 2012: One day after the People Magazine puff piece appears, Weiner finds Sydney Leathers on Formspring. July 19, 2012 – November 2012: Anthony Weiner engages in intense sexual discussions with Sydney Leathers. From the timeline : Things were very intense by August 2012/already talks of the Chicago sex condo and having sexual conversations. We would send naked images to each other and have phone sex. Anthony Weiner would send me penis pictures from his Carlos Danger yahoo email to my Gmail. And now, we have: September 2, 2012 or thereabouts: : Weiner confesses to Huma. And then keeps texting for another couple of months: November 2012: Carlos Danger and Sydney Leathers’s relationship “began to fizzle out,” according to Leathers . Today is August 2, 2013. There’s no way “one month” after their trip 12 months ago is December 2012. And he was sexting clear through November. So basically, he must have told her: “Heads up, honey. I’m still sending my pics around and having phone sex and talking dirty to this 22-year-old. I’ll be continuing to do so for the next couple months at least, just so’s you’re aware.” And after all that , we have this: April 10, 2013: Puff piece appears online in the New York Times that portrays Weiner’s supposed coming clean and being totally honest in June 2011. The article also has Weiner and Abedin portraying their new son as having totally changed Weiner’s perspective: “But in the confines of our home and our relationship and our parenting this child and our love for each other — she said she wanted to get through it, she wanted not to conflate the giant international news story with the two people who were involved in it. And a lot of women couldn’t do that. And Jordan has given us a lot of perspective. We have to deal with this a lot. It’s not behind us. It kind of bubbles around and comes up in different ways. But she’s, um. . . .” Here, he paused and took a deep breath and started to cry. “She’s given. . . .” He stopped again, could barely get the words out. “She’s given me another chance. And I am very grateful for that. And I’m trying to make sure I get it right.” Abedin fully participated in that charade. And he wasn’t even done, as he went back to Leathers the very next day: Immediately after April 10, 2013 New York Times puff piece: After the appearance of the New York Times puff piece, Weiner reactivates his Facebook account and asks Sydney Leathers what she thought of it : We only spoke once in December 2012, and then I didn’t hear from Anthony Weiner again until April 11, 2013 when a NYT article about him was released. He reactivated his Facebook and asked me what I thought of it . So Weiner tells Huma all this. And, for the good of her SON : May 2013: Weiner enters mayor’s race. And she agrees to it. She is a disgusting careerist and this article does NOT help her image. As long as you pay attention. Thanks to JVW for the link.
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Huma Puff Piece in New York Post Actually Very Damning