How To Carve A Jack-O-Lantern
Posted on 10.30.10 by Danny Glover @ 7:01 pm

Art is in the eye of the beholder, and in the eye of a redneck who has a pumpkin in his pistol sights, the making of the art is a wonder to behold:

The truly amazing part of this video is the shooter’s steady hand and pinpoint accuracy in shot after shot. I wish had that kind of marksmanship.


Filed under: Holidays and Hunting & Guns and Just For Laughs and Rednecks and Video
Comments: None

The Nastiest Election Of All Time
Posted on 10.30.10 by Danny Glover @ 6:40 pm

To hear media elites tell it, this election season is the nastiest of all time. But the creative folks at Reason.tv have a much deeper sense of history.

They remember the rhetoric of the 1800 presidential election between revered founding fathers John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Now Reason.tv has given voice to those personal barbs between Adams and Jefferson in a modern media format — the attack ad.

Remember that the next time someone whines that civility is dead in American politics. If civility ever existed at all, it died long before the Tea Party Election of 2010.


Filed under: History and News & Politics and Video
Comments: None

The End Of The Great Recession
Posted on 10.29.10 by Danny Glover @ 6:30 pm

The Great Recession is now officially history — and part of journalistic history. This month the Associated Press added the term to the AP Stylebook, which is gospel in media circles.

Here’s how AP defines the negative economic milestone: “The recession that began in December 2007 and became the longest and deepest since the Great Depression of the 1930s. It occurred after losses on subprime mortgages battered the U.S. housing market. The National Bureau of Economic Research said it officially ended in June 2009, having lasted 18 months.”

Doesn’t that make you feel so much less depressed and recessed?


Filed under: Business and History and Media and News & Politics
Comments: None

‘Yes We Can, But …’
Posted on 10.28.10 by Danny Glover @ 8:54 am

Last night on “The Daily Show,” President Obama unwittingly coined an uninspiring yet perfectly fitting motto for the Democratic Party just days before what looks likely to be a crushing electoral defeat. The new slogan is a one-word expansion of Obama’s 2008 campaign refrain: “Yes We Can, But …”

Obama uttered the phrase when “Daily Show” host Jon Stewart challenged him on whether his administration has delivered on the promise of the “Yes We Can” rallying cry of two years ago.

Stewart asked Obama if a better campaign slogan might be ,”Yes we can, given certain conditions.”

“No I think what I would say is yes we can but –” Obama answered to laughter.

Obama slowly recovered by adding the phrase “but it’s not going to happen overnight” — a cop-out message he has repeated often over the past two years. But his abbreviated answer is the one that resonates with Americans who believed and voted for the Obama hype.

Here are just a few ways to fill in the blank in the Democratic Party’s new slogan:

  • Yes we can improve the healthcare system, but what America really needs is another tax-sucking behemoth bureaucracy.
  • Yes we can stimulate jobs, but let’s blow $800 billion on temporary, “shovel-ready” government waste.
  • Yes we can protect the environment responsibly, but we’d rather cap innovation and trade away jobs.
  • Yes we can keep taxes low, but it’s much less painful to increase the national debt by $3 trillion in two years.
  • Yes we can boot special interests out of Washington, but we need our cronies to achieve our socialist vision for America.

Add your own Democratic messages in the comments, and tweet them with the hashtag #YesWeCanBut.”


Filed under: Government and News & Politics
Comments: None

‘I Worked So Hard To Get That Title’
Posted on 10.22.10 by Danny Glover @ 10:36 pm

California Democrat Barbara Boxer beclowned herself at a Senate hearing in June 2009 when she chided Brig. Gen. Michael Walsh for daring to be polite enough to call her “ma’am.”

“You know, do me a favor,” Boxer whined. “Could you say ’senator’ instead of ‘ma’am?’ It’s just a thing, I worked so hard to get that title, so I’d appreciate it.”

Video of the encounter shot across the Internet, but surprisingly, no one made any good parodies of it — until now, that it. But it was worth the 16-month wait:

That clip is destined to earn a spot in the Internet Parody Hall of Fame — which doesn’t actually exist yet, so feel free to steal the idea and create it.


Filed under: Government and Just For Laughs and People and Video
Comments: None

Jeff Casteel: WVU’s Defensive Mastermind
Posted on 10.21.10 by Danny Glover @ 11:05 pm

When you’re from a small town (Paden City) in a state ridiculed by the rest of the nation (West Virginia), it’s always a thrill to see a hometown boy get his 15 minutes of fame. So it was with Jeff Casteel on ESPN’s Big East Blog yesterday.

Casteel is the defensive coordinator for West Virginia University’s football team. He has been on the coaching staff since 2001 and has headed the defense since 2003. I was glad he didn’t flee in the middle of the night three years ago when Rich Rodriguez went to Michigan, and now Casteel is getting his due.

He’s also getting it in the humble way I would expect from a Paden City boy:

Jeff Casteel has got it all wrong. The West Virginia defensive coordinator needs to hire a fast-talking agent, pronto. Perhaps he could enlist a marketing team. A website wouldn’t hurt either.

Doesn’t Casteel know this is the age of the superstar coordinator in college football, the guy who gets tons of face time during TV broadcasts and commands a salary of up to half a million dollars? Your name is supposed to be on every list of future head coaches, and if you can get one of those coach-in-waiting contracts, even better. …
(more…)


Filed under: People and Sports and West Virginia
Comments: 1 Comment

Leaf Oil Trumps VRE Locomotion
Posted on 10.21.10 by Danny Glover @ 10:16 pm

The U.S. Postal Service has no official creed, but it has this inspiring myth going for it: “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”

The Virginia Railway Express could use a strong dose of postal pride because today we riders received an uninspiring, excuse-filled message from the CEO about how we can expect bad weather to make our lives miserable. Rain and the flash-flood warnings it occasionally brings are the bane of his existence.

“While we all know it, it is easy to forget what a strong force water can be,” CEO Dale Zehner wrote in his monthly e-mail. “Flash floods can cause instability in the tracks. Or worse, depending on the force of the water, a flash flood can wash out a section of tracks. Because of this, Norfolk Southern’s operating rules require all passenger trains to operate at restricted speed, under 15 mph. For our Manassas Line riders, this can be quite a long commute.”

Tell me about it. I lived that nightmare commute a few times during the summer. The bad news is that I may have to endure it again this fall, this time because of something worse than mere water — leaf oil. Here is Zehner’s explanation:

In autumn if leaves are falling at a time when there are significant amounts of rain and wind, the falling wet leaves end up on the tracks. Wet leaves then stick to the rails like a bad case of static cling. As the trains roll over the leaves, the wheels act as press that extracts the oil from the leaves, which then cause an extremely slick set of tracks. Our long-term riders on the Manassas Line know that when that set of tracks is an uphill grade, delays can be extensive, even worse than flash-flood restrictions.

In other words, we may be living in the 21st century, but leaf oil still trumps locomotion.

I have the sinking feeling that I’ll be getting another batch of unwanted free-ride certificates from VRE over the next few weeks because of extra hours on the train. The question is how many hours I will endure before I decide I’d rather drive to work and fight the highway traffic.


Filed under: Business and D.C. Commuter Diary
Comments: None

The American Republic Of China
Posted on 10.21.10 by Danny Glover @ 9:27 pm

There’s nothing like a good “red scare” to snap America’s leaders back to fiscal reality. At least that seems to be the thinking behind this new Citizens Against Government Waste video, which envisions the fall of the tax-and-spend United States to communist China by the year 2030.

The fear-mongering plot line, and the evil laughter as a punch line, is a bit much for my taste. Though I fear my country may well collapse under the weight of foolish fiscal policies and phenomenal debt, I don’t care to imagine it happening.

On the other hand, I can’t argue with the premise. I predicted way back in 1990 that the United States as we know it would cease to exist within 50 years, most likely because of bankruptcy. Citizens Against Government Waste just sees it happening 10 years earlier.


Filed under: Government and News & Politics and Video
Comments: None

Today Is World Statistics Day!
Posted on 10.20.10 by Danny Glover @ 1:10 pm

Statistics are all around us, every day. That’s the message of this informative video from the U.S. Census Bureau, which was produced to celebrate today as World Statistics Day:

As a journalist, I’ve always been fascinated by the role of statistics in our lives. Statistics was one of my favorite classes my first year of college. (I learned enough to know how important statistics are — and I learned that math is not my forte.)

At the same time, I’m skeptical about how easily statistics can be manipulated to push an agenda. The classic book “How To Lie With Statistics” was required reading in journalism school at West Virginia University, and I recommend it to everyone because everyone will be saturated with stats-based news throughout their lives.

We all need to be enlightened about numbers.


Filed under: Home Schooling and News & Politics
Comments: None

Sissy Boy Shia LaBeouf
Posted on 10.15.10 by Danny Glover @ 12:13 pm

In the movies, actor Shia LaBeouf is a fearless hero who fights giant machines. But in real life, the star of the “Transformers” movies is a sissy boy who throws coffee on harmless photographers and then flees like a coward. Optimus Prime he is not.

LaBeouf’s public display of wimpiness came as Hollywood brought the “Transformers” series to the nation’s capital this week to film scenes for “Transformers: The Dark of the Moon.” The appearance led to another embarrassing incident on the streets of Washington, though District of Columbia police were the ones embarrassed.

A D.C. police vehicle sped through the on-street set in perfectly bad timing, right into the path of one of the star robotic characters in the movie series, Bumblebee. Watch the accident unfold:

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Maybe the entertainment celebrities should stay on the West Coast. We have enough trouble with the political celebrities in Washington.


Filed under: Entertainment and Human Interest and Just For Laughs and Video
Comments: None

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