damnum absque injuria

December 30, 2006

The Video Big Media Doesn’t Want You to See

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 11:19 am

Fox, CNN and all the other big boys have video of the events leading up to Saddam’s execution, but they all wimp out and stop there. Only one minor network in the U.S. has carried the sensational image of what happened after the trap door was pulled. Rather than strain their server by linking to them, I’ve reproduced the image below the fold.


December 29, 2006


Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 7:15 pm

Patterico has an amusing post about Deal or No Deal, a game show that I’ve never watched or even secondhand smoked, but which looks to be almost as stupid as Nip/Tuck. One of the meta-threads concerns his quip about undiagnosed sleep apnea, a condition with which I was recently diagnosed myself. I knew I’d been snoring for years, but what I did not know was that in my case, snoring wasn’t just an annoyance to others, but a symptom of the fact that I was gasping for air roughly 200 times per night, getting only about 60% of the oxygen I needed. By way of comparison, my doctor explained that if he were to deliberately hold his own breath until he were blue in the face, he’d get upwards of 90% of the oxygen he needed. He also added that if any pneumonia patient was getting as little oxygen as I did every night, he’d be put on a respirator. Fortunately, they don’t have me on a respirator now, but they do have me on a CPAP machine, which pressurizes air and facilitates normal breathing at night. Now I hardly snore at all, get all the oxygen I need, and sleep like a baby – except that I don’t usually pee in my pants or wake up crying. Having to put on a mask and turn on a machine every night kinda sucks, but it’s a little better than being drowsy throughout the day, and it’s a hell of a lot better than dying. Who knows, maybe an earlier diagnosis would have helped to prevent an accident?

Seriously, if you or anyone you know snores, get a sleep study. Chances are your snoring is just snoring, but then again, if you play Russian Roulette only once, chances are you won’t get shot. That doesn’t mean you should take your chances either way. More on apnea here, courtesy of Anwyn. The answer to the the heading of the story is no, snoring can’t kill you (at least not directly – if anyone else hears it YMMV) but it can be a sign of something else that can. It’s not a matter to be taken lightly.

December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 5:35 pm

I’m taking the week off from blogging. If you’re not, consider this an open thread. Merry Christmas to all, and God bless us, every one. Well, almost everyone.

December 23, 2006

Googly Goodness

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 2:55 pm

Right now I’m ranked #2 for Google searches on the terms Jimmy Carter douchebag. I can’t imagine why.

Airing of Grievances: Canada

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 9:53 am

Was Canada ever really necessary? I don’t mean the Frog part, of course they have to be in a country of their own, even if I’m not quite sure why that country has to be on this continent. No, I mean English Canada, a.k.a. Not-Quebec. It’s not as though Great Britain had some big plan to form two English speaking countries or anything. It was all supposed to be one great big British Empire, remember? The only reason we have two countries now is because when things with south, some colonists said “don’t tread on me” while others said “thank me harder.”

But enough on Canada, at least for the moment. Recently a piece by Paul Helmke, a former Hoosier, a former Republican, a former mayor and the current head of the U.S.’s main gun-control lobby, has been getting fawning reviews from self-styled moderates who are either ignorant, or willfully ignorant, of the not-so-moderate positions Helmke’s organization also supports. As I’ve noted in other fora, it is disingenuous to talk of how reasonable one particular article is while ignoring the fact that Helmke has not repudiated any of his organization’s other positions, and lame to effectively give him credit for doing so solely because he managed to write one whole article without bringing them up.

This piece is not about that, though. Even if Helmke’s article were viewed in a vacuum, and we were to pretend that the National Council to Control Handguns / Handgun Control, Inc. / Brady Center to Prevent Gun Ownership / Whatever The Hell They’re Calling Themselves This Week had abandoned its support of every gun law not mentioned in that article, some would argue that even those controls would not be reasonable, as they unnecessarily burden the right to bear arms. I don’t necessarily disagree with these criticisms, but I’m going to argue a different tack:

Paul Helmke should withdraw from politics and disband his organization immediately. His own support for firearm regulation, and that of his entire organization, is absurd. It’s completely contrary to American traditions. It has no basis in fact, and for someone who represents a major American association to be pushing this agenda is particularly alarming, especially a man.”

If you’re an American, male or female, pro-gun, anti-gun, moderate or indifferent, then chances are that you find that argument downright retarded. But if you’re Canadian,* I’m sure it makes perfect sense. ‘Hat tip: Eugene Volokh.

*I realize I’m painting with a broad brush here, so my apologies to Sharon Gregson, Mark Steyn, Wendy McElroy, Rachel Marsden, Terrence, Phillip, Ike, the entire membership of the National Firearms Association (yes, both of you), the ghost of Gordon Sinclair, Rush, Triumph, any Canucks who happen to be reading this blog, and countless others I didn’t even know were Canucks ‘cuz y’all didn’t run around making a big deal of the fact. As with us lawyers, it’s too bad that 99% of y’all give all y’all a bad name.

December 22, 2006

Airing of Grievances: I-95

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 9:51 pm

I know I said I was going to quit, but Festivus hasn’t arrived yet so I’m going to indulge myself once more. Whose brilliant idea was it to build one Interstate from Miami to Philadelphia, and another from some nowhere town 45 miles northeast of there to Maine, and assign the same highway number to both? Whoever did that is Sofa King. We Todd did.

Regional Observations

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 7:06 pm

A few tidbits I’ve learned of late, in no particular order:

  • Asian guys who grow up in the South speak with Southern accents. I know, common sense says that of course they do, but it’s still kinda weird for pseudo-Yankee transplants like me.
  • All y’all (and, I presume, the bare pronoun y’all) includes corporations as well as natural persons.
  • Nothing is too naughty for Trump’s USA, but contrary to popular opinion, some things are too naughty for Nevada.

Airing of Grievances: Idiots Who Build Two Parking Lots Next To Each Other, Complete With A Gazillion Barriers To Keep You From Driving From One To The Other

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 6:04 pm

God, I hate idiots who build two parking lots next to each other, complete with a gazillion barriers to keep you from driving from one to the other.

And with that, I hereby cease airing grievances. Well, not really, half the stuff I blog about involves airing one grievance or another. I do, however, cease putting the phrase “Airing of Grievances” into the headings for the time being. Close enough?

December 21, 2006

The Real Mr. Hankey

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 6:47 pm

Mary K. has the goods.

December 20, 2006

Airing of Grievances: Debbie Schlussel

Filed under:   by Xrlq @ 6:48 pm

If her shameful yet shameless handling of the Jill Carroll kidnapping were not bad enough, Schlussel reminds us once again why the world would be a better place of she would STFU already. Conservatives already have a great reason to vote against Bar(r)a(c)k Hussein Obama: he’s a freedom hating, race-card-playing socialist. Conservatives, liberals and moderates alike have another pretty good reason to oppose him in 2008: he’s a political neophyte who has no business even thinking about running for President until 2016 at the earliest – and then only if he accomplishes something significant in the meantime. But just because we all have at least good reasons to oppose the guy, why should that stop the cupid stunt from offering a totally crappy reason on top of that.

Hot tip: ‘Hat Air, or something like that. Baldilocks and Captain Ed have more.

UPDATE: Beth isn’t impressed, either. Is anyone? Other than Schlussel herself, that is.

UPDATE x2: Neither are Little Miss Attila and the Political Pitbull. Time for Carnival of Debbie Schlussel is a Cupid Stunt, Part Duh.


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