- "Blame Canada." - While I never expected an exodus of everyone from the "blue" states (that would involve my parents) moving to Canada, the results of the election did seem to land like a dull thud. The seeming coincidences of history, however, seem to be playing out. The Ol' Second Term Curse seems to be creeping in and one must wonder about the mid-term elections next year. Will the Democrats get their act together? They have an opportunity to really do something, but as of late, they seem to have trouble getting elected to much more than dog catcher or the joke jobs (Chicago building inspector, for example). As for Belgium, you make some good points. Germany ran over them twice and threatened a third time (during the 1870-71 Franco-Prussian War). I can see how the classic French rentier mentality survives; it has often been said that Frenchmen fly their flag on the left, but vote on the right. I think, moreover, that it must be said that Belgium, as we know it, has only existed since 1830 and they are in no way innocent of horrible atrocities in the past. Any time they want to deride the USA, remind them of King Leopold II and his "humanitarian" record in the Congo. That'll shut 'em up. Brussels may be a nice city and home of the EU, but it was built on the blood of millions of Africans. Let them choke on their Chimay with that.
- "The 'Smoke-Filled Room' Commits Suicide." - Well put. As all of you know, I have long been an enemy of the nanny state. The state takes so much. We must fight tooth and nail for what we can salvage of our rights. It is sad, however, that we must concentrate on the mere dignities of life and not the "big" issues concerning our eroding rights. This news today, however, was a good sign. A good fight led in part by Russ Feingold, but if he thinks this is the basis for a presidential run, he's nuts. He will be a latter day Dennis Kucinich.
- "Bucky Vs. A Dead Pope? Advantage Bucky!" - Football and polka? So, you were at the Essen Haus this fall? That describes a large part of my social life. Anyway, I never claimed that Wisconsin is claiming to be a b-ball powerhouse. Their gradual rise over the past years has raised us, I think, to the level of a "regional power." In traditional "Great Power" politics (thanks for the idea to my hero, A.J.P. Taylor), we have not gained Great Power status. Hockey is another issue. We are the best in the land, excepting that one upset against Michigan Tech last week (which was avenged the next day by a 7-0 drubbing). All of the Colorado college hockey teams like bitch-ass Colorado College and it's less hot sister the University of Denver can do various lewd things to certain regions of my anatomy. Namely the ballsack. Sorry for that...I really hate Colorado (with the exception of a few select people).
- "Packers: Take Your Ball And Go Home." - I am a Chicago Bears fan, and you are telling me about teams needing time to rebuild? What the hell were the Dave Wannstead years? Well, and Dick Jauron...and Lovie Smith. The Bears have shown flashes of greatness lately, but are plagued by injury and fines. We must consider, after the embarassing loss to a desparate Pittsburgh team, that the world has not come to an end and that Atlanta is immenently beatable. As for the Packers, yes it is the time to rebuild and regain strength. Chicago teams are notorious for screwing up when it counts, so it could happen. Perhaps it is because I would have no other team as our rivals...we are the classic pairing. Still, it is a great moral victory for the Bears to beat the Packers, regardless of the condition/record of either franchise. It is like any classic rivalry...it can make a bad season good or a good one feel less glorious. I know here at Wisconsin, we had a decent season for King Barry's last, but the Minnesota game is always crucial. Being a Notre Dame fan, I needn't lecture you on classic football rivalries.
So there you go, Jenks. Thanks again and perhaps we shall gather on the ground of the Hoosier State once again.