Alan K. Henderson's Weblog


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Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Rerun Of The Third Annual Blogger Costume Party

I've been quite busy lately, so I'll reprise the Firefly-themed party. Can't take the sky!
Our tale begins as Captain Reynolds, his loyal first mate, and Layne try to appease a crowd of bar patrons who are mighty peeved at their refusal to join in the festivities celebrating the birthday of Misha I, emperor of the Blogger Alliance.

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The ship's mechanic knows better than to pick fights with Loyal Citizens. She stays at her post aboard Serenity - and hopes that Simon remembers to bring the fresh strawberries.

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Here comes Simon now. He's looking cheerful.

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Serenity takes off for the border world Persephone, in hopes of finding a cargo job through Badger, their old occasional business associate. Badger is unavailable, but his brother Possum approaches Captain Reynolds with an offer to smuggle black market beagles to the planet Sullivan.

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This business has its risks. After taking the cargo, Serenity is shortly intercepted by the Alliance cruiser Dallas. Reynolds hides the beagles in empty crates left over from their previous run, a shipment of blenders, and docks with the Dallas. The captain is satisfied with the inspection, especially after receiving some complimentary football tickets and Inara's phone number.

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Ah, but someone else wants to snoop around - one of those mysterious blue-gloved agents relentlessly in pursuit of River Tam.

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Fortunately, River is nowhere aboard - she's sharing funny stories with some guy at a Star Trek convention on Beaumonde.

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Saturday, October 23, 2010

At Opposing Ends Of The Technological Spectrum

Sikorsky has developed a twin-rotor helicopter capable of much faster speeds than conventional choppers.

Red Bull Flugtag is a competition for ragtag homemade gliders, held in various cities all around the world. Here's one glider from Honk Kong; CNN has coverage of that event. Here's the site for the American competitions, complete with videos.

From Stockholm:

That first entry looks more like a bobsled than a glider.

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Texas Rangers Win The American League Pennant

Fort Worth Star-Telegram has the story.

Dallas Morning News has the slideshow.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Byron York Is An Idiot

Because he fails to grasp even the most rudimentary understanding of what libertarians believe regarding economic policy.

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The Juan Williams Kerfuffle

Juan Williams got fired from National Public Radio for saying this on Bill O'Reilly's Fox TV show:

The move came after Mr. Williams, who is also a Fox News political analyst, appeared on the “The O’Reilly Factor” on Monday. On the show, the host, Bill O’Reilly, asked him to respond to the notion that the United States was facing a “Muslim dilemma.” Mr. O’Reilly said, “The cold truth is that in the world today jihad, aided and abetted by some Muslim nations, is the biggest threat on the planet.”

Mr. Williams said he concurred with Mr. O’Reilly.

He continued: “I mean, look, Bill, I’m not a bigot. You know the kind of books I’ve written about the civil rights movement in this country. But when I get on the plane, I got to tell you, if I see people who are in Muslim garb and I think, you know, they are identifying themselves first and foremost as Muslims, I get worried. I get nervous.”

Mr. Williams also made reference to the Pakistani immigrant who pleaded guilty this month to trying to plant a car bomb in Times Square. “He said the war with Muslims, America’s war is just beginning, first drop of blood. I don’t think there’s any way to get away from these facts,” Mr. Williams said.

NPR said in its statement that the remarks “were inconsistent with our editorial standards and practices, and undermined his credibility as a news analyst with NPR.”

I have a few thoughts:

  • Ed Morissey notes that "Williams used that personal observation as a springboard to discuss the dangers of generalization." Evidently NPR's editorial standards include taking statements out of context.
  • As Michelle Malkin notes that wishing death on Rush Limbaugh won't get you fired from NPR.
  • In 1995, wishing AIDS on Jesse Helms wasn't a firing offense at NPR, either. (Link via James Taranto)
  • Does NPR have those standards in writing? They should. If one of them is "a journalist under our employ may not champion prejudice on this medium or another," then Williams has solid ground to sue, since he was doing the opposite.
  • While there may be some folks (maybe more than just a few) who get nervous seeing Islamic dress in an airplane, they get even more nervous when it's coupled with outlandish behavior. Don't do weird stuff in an airplane, whether you're Muslim or not.
  • Juan Williams should try to get a gig with MSNBC. that network employs Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow, so their standards are pretty lax. Unfortunately, so are their ratings - but hey, a job's a job.

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Seems Like Old Times

Fox News headline, 2010: Iranian Weapon Shipment to Afghan Taliban Raises Alarm.

Washington Post headline, 2007: Iranian Flow Of Weapons Increasing, Officials Say. Subheading: "Arms Shipments Tracked To Iraqi, Afghan Groups."

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Hossein Derakhshan

Reason's Armin Rosen tells the story of how the Iranian-born Canadian citizen who pioneered the Iranian blogosphere wound up serving a 19-year jail sentence in Iran for crimes against that state.

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Monday, October 18, 2010

Tell Us Something We Don't Know

The intresting thing about this is who said it:

Quote of the Week. "I am unabashedly pro-teacher. I believe in collective bargaining. But what you see up here is a broken system... The most powerful defenders of that broken system, without a question, is the teachers' union." - Los Angeles Mayor (and former teacher union organizer) Antonio Villaraigosa. (October 5 Sacramento Press)

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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Everything's Bigger In Texas

Including economic growth:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 214,000 net new jobs were created in the United States from August 2009 to August 2010. Texas created 119,000 jobs during the same period.

How'd that happen? Read the whole thing.

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Quote Of The Day

From NRO's Clifford May:

We should not meekly accept that, as Bernard Lewis, the great scholar of the Middle East, has observed, “Islam enjoys an immunity from critical examination that Christendom has lost and Judaism never had.”

May critically examines one artifact originating from Islamic societies: the burqa/niqab, which he calls "a portable prison." Read the whole thing.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

I Love It When A Marketing Plan Comes Together

Mr. T is advertising gold. Not just the wearable kind.



California is cranked-to-eleven barking insane.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010


All 33 of the trapped Chilean miners were rescued.


Yesterday Was The 10th Anniversary Of The USS Cole Attack

Michelle Malkin remembers.

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A Bill To Require Members Of Congress To Read All Bills Into The Public Record

Now that is a great idea. However, it does guarantee that an auctioneer will never be elected to Capitol Hill. Mel Tillis might want to consider a political career, though...


Friday, October 08, 2010

This One Doesn't Suck As Much

Liu Xiaobo, a Chinese dissident who calls for peaceful reforms in his country, won the Nobel Peace Prize this year.

While the prize is going to someone doing something productive, the Nobel committee has once again rewarded intentions that have yet to produce actual results. All the other Nobel prizes require actual results. Not this one.


Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Fun With The 10:10 Logo

I found it at this site, and decided to tweak it just a touch...

The infamous video is here. Not safe for work, unless you work on the set of Saw XIV.

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