Monday, March 31, 2008

More GoodTitans News: The Freak Speaks..

Thomas George, Senior Columnist for has a pretty neat story about the return of one Jevon "the Freak" Kearse to the balmy shores of Nashville here. There are some great bits to the story, including a lot about Kearse's personal history that I wasn't aware of, but there is this one passage that will be music to many Titans fans ears-

"I've been through some mental games in life and in football" Kearse said. "There are things I have had to accept. But when that No. 90 is on my back once again, all the rest will speak for itself. By then, we won't have to worry about who is saying what. The Titans made a great decision drafting me out of Florida. They reaped the benefits. Now they get to reap the benefits again. I'm pissed off. They have a very experienced, soon-to-be-32-year-old freak. I'll make it a good thing."

Kearse says this is the first time in his career that he's taken part in voluntary pre-season workouts. If he really is this pissed off and and stays healthy this year, the Titans defensive line will be even more frightening than it was last year. This makes me, as a Titans fan, pretty farking excited. I'm sure the other QB's in the AFC are thrilled Jevon is back lining up opposite Vanden Bosch too.

Now let's see us get a freaking wideout who can burn and we're in business folks.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Hangin With My Mom And Listening To Stevie Ray Vaughn...

It's Mothers day weekend here at Tman In Tennessee, and so far Mom and me have been having a blast. Great food and quality art has been the theme so far.

Cheekwood has the Great 8, and I'm excited to go from their collection of American artists to the Monet to Dali exhibit at the Frist.

Here was My favorite American...

Andrew Chadwicks's is the new best restaurant in Nashville, in case anyone was wondering.

Possibly the best in this continent.

Anyways. Here's two Stevie Ray Vaughn and Double Trouble Videos that I think are great.......

Sorry, I can't do a Stevie without a Jimi doin a Bob......or something..

Final weekend recap to follow....

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

North Korea Like You've Never Seen It Before

Via Perry de Havilland at Samizdata last night I was mind-blown by this mini-documentary about two filmmakers who somehow get a tourist visa in to North Korea through China. I’m not sure how they get the video camera past security, nor how the security detail never appears to find it, but they film their whole visit in 14 separate 4 minute videos.

Here is the link.

It is the most surreal, frightening, sad and downright bizarre thing I’ve ever seen. I guarantee that you will not be disappointed.

As Perry says- "I do not think they are going to be invited back."

Monday, March 24, 2008

Removing Saddam Hussein From Power Was The Right Thing To Do.

I can't believe that people are still arguing about this (as I did with a friend of mine on Friday night), but today I was reading another editorial about the recent Pentagon report from the Harmony program detailing the massive amount of cooperation between Hussein and various Islamic terrorist organizations that were active up to and beyond the war in Iraq.

Here is a bit from the editorial in todays Wall Street Journal-

Five years on, few Iraq myths are as persistent as the notion that the Bush Administration invented a connection between Saddam Hussein and al Qaeda. Yet a new Pentagon report suggests that Iraq's links to world-wide terror networks, including al Qaeda, were far more extensive than previously understood.

Naturally, it's getting little or no attention. Press accounts have been misleading or outright distortions, while the Bush Administration seems indifferent. Even John McCain has let the study's revelations float by. But that doesn't make the facts any less notable or true.

The redacted version of "Saddam and Terrorism" is the most definitive public assessment to date from the Harmony program, the trove of "exploitable" documents, audio and video records, and computer files captured in Iraq. On the basis of about 600,000 items, the report lays out Saddam's willingness to use terrorism against American and other international targets, as well as his larger state sponsorship of terror, which included harboring, training and equipping jihadis throughout the Middle East.

"The rise of Islamic fundamentalism in the region gave Saddam the opportunity to make terrorism, one of the few tools remaining in Saddam's 'coercion' toolbox, not only cost effective but a formal instrument of state power," the authors conclude. Throughout the 1990s, the Iraqi Intelligence Service (IIS) cooperated with Hamas; the Palestine Liberation Front, which maintained a Baghdad office; Force 17, Yasser Arafat's private army; and others. The IIS gave commando training for members of Egyptian Islamic Jihad, the organization that assassinated Anwar Sadat and whose "emir" was Ayman al-Zawahiri, who became Osama bin Laden's second-in-command when the group merged with al Qaeda in 1998.

At the very least the report should dispel the notion that outwardly "secular" Saddam would never consort with religious types like al Qaeda. A pan-Arab nationalist, Saddam viewed radical Islamists as potential allies, and they likewise. According to a 1993 memo, Saddam decided to "form a group to start hunting Americans present on Arab soil; especially Somalia," where al Qaeda was then working with warlords against U.S. humanitarian forces. Saddam also trained Sudanese fighters in Iraq.

The Pentagon report cites this as "a tactical example" of their cooperation. When Saddam "was ordering action in Somalia aimed at the American presence, Osama bin Laden was doing the same thing." Saddam took an interest in "far-flung terrorist groups . . . to locate any organization whose services he might use in the future." The Harmony documents "reveal that the regime was willing to co-opt or support organizations it knew to be part of al Qaeda -- as long as that organization's near-term goals supported Saddam's long-term version."

For 20 years, such "support" included using Fedayeen Saddam training camps to school terrorists, especially Palestinians but also non-Iraqis "directly associated" with al Qaeda, continuing up to the fall of Baghdad. Saddam also provided financial support and weapons, amounting to "a state-directed program of significant scale." In July 2001, the regime began patronizing a terror cartel in Bahrain calling itself the Army of Muhammad, which, according to an Iraqi memo, "is under the wings of bin Laden."

It's been a continued talking point by not just the anti-war critics but also Barack Obama that this war was a mistake and we should leave Iraq immeadiately. Ignoring the fact that leaving Iraq right now would cause a complete reversal in the progress made in securing a safe and free Iraq, the simple fact is that removing Saddam from power was the right thing to do in terms of protecting US interests while dissolving a major financier and organizer of Islamic terrorism. The documents that have now been examined in greater detail further confirm this to be true.

The undeniable facts about Saddam Hussein and his regime should leave no doubt whatsoever about this simple fact- He was consistently and proactively arming, training, funding, and harboring Islamic Terrorist groups throughout Iraq and the world at large. I've probably linked this page a few times before, but for added benefit for those who continue to deny this truth, I ask that you once again read the page by Delroy Murdock- Hussein and Terrorism.

I would also like to take this opportunity to point out that when Barack Obama continues to make the point that "there weren't any terrorists in Iraq until we invaded" that he should be told that he is a LYING FOOL. The one most specific example of this would be Abu Musab al Zarqawi. Zarqawi, who would eventually find himself on the wrong end of some US laser-guided munitions, was working directly with Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan prior to the war in Iraq. Once the Taliban was removed from power Zarqawi's next stop was in to the loving embrace of the Hussein regime, where he reportedly checked into Olympic Hospital, an elite facility run by the late Uday Hussein. This was all PRIOR to Operation Iraqi Freedom.

So either Obama is lying and knows better, which makes him deceitful, or he doesn't know this which makes him a fool. Not a great choice, in my opinion.

The final point I want to make concerns the lack of direct operational ties between Hussein and Osama Bin Laden. Many anti-war folks like to point to this as the evidence that Hussein had NO TIES AT ALL to Islamic terrorism. But those who do this ignore the very real fact not only is Osama and Al-Qaeda hardly the only Islamic terrorist group, but after further reading of the evidence it appears that Saddam was in bed with everyone BUT Osama, which is very strange indeed.

Removing Saddam Hussein from power made the US and the world a safer place.

Update: I would be doing a disservice if I wrote another post about Iraq without including a link to the extraordinary journalism coming from one of the blogosphere's finest contributors, Michael Totten. Mr. Totten has voluntarily travelled extensively throughout Iraq and several other mid-east nations over the past few years entirely through reader support through his blog. He is probably one of the only people in the world who will give you the truth about what is going on in Iraq right now. There is no middleman, no mangerial editor, no press deadline to his reports. There is his blog, and his pictures, and that's it. He is also one of the few people getting out the messages that our soldiers want you to know about. If you are reading Michael Totten, you will be informed about Iraq and the conditions on the ground.

I wish I could contribute more, but I try and drop some money in his tip jar when I can, and if you like what you read you can do the same.

Micheal Totten's Middle East Journal

Monday, March 17, 2008

Best last call ever!

The end

Three Crow Bar, Round# i forgot

Car bomb #2

Round 3 Greenhouse

Wild Rover, round 1


*Hic*.........."Cause It's NOOOO NAYYYY NEVERRRRR....."

Yep, it's that time of the year folks, the time that we of Irish descent like to engage in the act of signing Irish Tunes loudly while drinking copious amounts of Guiness.

First stop will be to my buddy Fins house for some of his special beef stew for a nice buffer to counteract all the incoming alcohol. Then it's in to the limo and we begin the Ultimate St. Patricks Day Pub Crawl, where we try to hit as many bars across town as possible in one evening. Hopefully we get the same driver we had last year, he was awesome.

I will be posting shots from the camera phone as the night wears on, stay tuned!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Yet Another Culinary Success

What an excellent recipe. The beef was falling off the bone and could be cut with a fork, not to mention incredibly tasty. The flavor was interesting, as the cocoa and sweet spices mixed well with the Chinese three-out-of-Fivespice blend, and the braising liquid was very tasty when mopped up with some garlic mashed potatoes and fresh green beans. We will definitely be having this again.

This Weeks Saturday Night Feast

This evening we will be trying a recipe I picked up from last weeks Wall Street Journal. The recipe is from Chef Brad Farmerie, executive chef of Public and its adjacent wine bar, the Monday Room, in New York.

Here is the recipe

Five-Spice-and-Cocoa-Braised Short Ribs
[Braised short ribs]

Yield: 4 servings
Preparation time: 45 minutes
Cooking time: 3 hours 15 minutes

4 pounds well-marbled beef short ribs, cut 2 inches thick and preferably with the bone
2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup soy sauce
The zest and juice of 1 orange
1 1/2 teaspoons ketchup
3 1/2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder
2 tablespoons dark-brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 clove garlic, minced
1 shallot, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

• Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the short ribs in an ovenproof casserole just big enough to fit them snugly.

• In a mixing bowl, whisk together the stock, soy sauce, zest, juice, ketchup, five-spice powder, brown sugar, cocoa powder, garlic, shallot and thyme. Pour the mixture over the short ribs.

• Cover the baking container tightly with foil and transfer to the oven. Bake for 21/2 to 3 hours (depending on the size of the ribs). The meat should be falling off the bone and give little resistance when pressed with a fork. Uncover and return to the oven to allow the juices to thicken, about 15 minutes more.

• Transfer the ribs to a plate and carefully pour the braising liquid into a large glass measuring cup. Allow it to sit for 5 minutes so the fat will rise to the top. Using a small ladle or cup, skim off the fat.

• Serve the ribs with a few spoonfuls of sauce drizzled over the top. If making ahead of time, pour the defatted sauce back over the ribs and cover the dish with foil. Reheat for 20 minutes before serving.

Here's what we have so far.

Now I couldn't find Chinese five spice anywhere from some strange reason, so I turned to -who else?- my mom for help. She had me go with a combination of anise, cinnamon, and fennel which is three out of the five spices. Works for me. Apparently one of the spices is cloves, and I hate cloves so I think I'm better off with this.

They are cooking as I type and I'll post a shot of the final product, bon appetit!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

If I Had A Million Dollars....

I could barely afford the above pictured automobile, which is my dream car.

Recently I was surfing through Jalopnik, the Auto Obsession blog , and more specifically their Jalopnik Fantasy Garage which is a fantastic compilation of the most exotic, the most powerful, the most unsafe, the most exquisite, and the most outlandish automobiles ever to grace this planets various surfaces.

But there is one car that today takes all of those descriptions and turns them upside down. And that car is the Bugatti Veyron.

The Bugatti Veyron was on Topgear (the British Auto Show) recently, and they got a chance to play with one on VW's supersecret test track.

The full ten minute clip is here. And definitely go fullscreen if you can.

Probably the coolest thing about this video is the filming done in-car during the push to top speed. It looks like someone driving a Cadillac on the freeway at 65 mph.

Except, the car is going 250 miles per hour. AND HE'S DRIVING WITH ONE HAND IN HIS LAP.

I will most likely never see one of these in person, much less own one. But I don't care. I think it is a testament to human ingenuity that we can create a machine that is capable of these things. And I'm glad that I can appreciate just how amazing this machine actually is.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

It's A Good Day To Be A Titans Fan.....

This is a site for sore eyes indeed......

Titans, Kearse agree to terms on multi-year contract

NASHVILLE, TN, March 6, 2008 – The Tennessee Titans have agreed to terms on a multi-year contract with defensive end Jevon Kearse, reuniting the three-time Pro Bowler with the club that drafted him in 1999.

“Jevon is a piece of the puzzle in trying to fill the defensive end need that we have,” said Titans General Manager Mike Reinfeldt. “Our expectation for him is to rush the passer in a limited number of snaps. He has always been a dynamic edge rusher and we want to put him in those situations.”

A veteran of nine NFL seasons, Kearse spent the past four years in Philadelphia after beginning his career with the Titans. The 6-foot-4, 265-pound defender, who earned the nickname “The Freak” during his playing days at the University of Florida, has played in 111 career games. His statistics include 444 tackles, 69.5 sacks, one interception and 29 forced fumbles.
Originally the 16th overall selection in the 1999 NFL Draft, Kearse won the Associated Press NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Award after setting rookie record with 14.5 sacks. In five campaigns with the Titans, he registered a total of 47.5 sacks, a figure that ranks seventh in team history.

The Titans have now sealed up two quality free agents by signing both Jevon Kearse and Algae Crumpler, the pro-bowl tight end formerly with the Atlanta Falcons. Both players bring years of experience, and will contribute in concrete ways immediately. Vince Young will now have a serious dependable outlet in Crumpler, and a defensive line featuring three pro-bowlers in Kearse, Albert Haynesworth and Kyle Vanden Bosch will give headaches to opposing offenses.

While this does not automatically put the Titans in Super Bowl contention, it is definitely an upgrade over the previous year.

The only problem? I have to wait 5 and a half damn months for the NFL season to start.


Monday, March 03, 2008

If Hillary Says She Is Proud Of Her Vote To Authorize The War In Iraq

I will seriously give her money to win.

I'm not a republican, nor am I a democrat.

But if Hillary would stand up and say-

"Look, I voted for us to get rid of Saddam because it was the responsible thing for me to do as a leader of this country and I have no regrets about it whatsoever"

I would literally hang farking signs from my apartment window. What is so hard about standing up for a decision you made that benefited a large population of people, that got rid of a psychotic dictator who was torturing his own people while hiring Islamic terrorists bombers like they were boyscouts selling candy?

Someone should be ashamed for this? I've been reading about this latest media idiocy regarding Obama and his screw up confusing which democratic senator voted against the war, or as Tom Maguire puts it "Let's All Apologize To Obama For Misunderstanding Him", and I don't understand why it's so honorable to have voted against getting rid of a psychopathic dictator. Even Samantha Power, one of Obama's main foreign policy advisers, believes that even though the US has been responsible for allowing several different genocides to happen in the last century (or so says her Pulitzer prize-winning novel "A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide") "My criterion for military intervention--with a strong preference for multilateral intervention--is an immediate threat of large-scale loss of life," she has said. "That's a standard that would have been met in Iraq in 1988 but wasn't in 2003." (source)

Why wouldn't that standard still be relevant in 2003? Because he hadn't killed enough thousands that year? He was kinda "chilling out man" about that whole genocide thing?

I hope no one from North Korea is reading this. Because if Obama is elected, your hopes for regime change and subsequent freedom will become much like those Iraqis that Obama ignored.

This is why I would campaign for Hillary. Because she is the only one to stop this idiocy left. Sorry John, but you will be the Nixon to Obamas cult of Kennedy.

Only one can stop him now..........

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