Freedom Lives

May 31, 2004

Thomas Paine

Quote of the Day

When we are planning for posterity, we ought to remember that virtue is not hereditary.

Thomas Paine

Memorial Day Post

I read this post over at Kim's and then started reading the comments.
I don't know if it was the content of the original post or the comments or both put together but I was touched. I started thinking about my own father who had server in WW2 and I started to cry.

It happens not infrequently in blogs that something I read touches me and I was reminded how rare it is for something that I read in the major media to affect me this way. Maybe they just don't have the skill, maybe they think they would be thought less well of, maybe their editors don't want something too emotional to reach print but for what ever reason it just doesn't happen.
That is a shame because a well written story can touch you and stay with you more than a sound bite ever can.
The legacy of Common Sense is still with us today. Back then they had pamplets today we have blogs. They had Thomas Paine we have Bill Whittle. Were it not for people like Bill I would despair the fate of the written word, he is not alone in the blogosphere but tyr to find someone who writes with that kind of power in the NY Times and you will come up short.

My father served in WW2 mostly on a ground crew for the air corps but after the Battle of the Bulge as he put it "They took everyone who could carry a gun and sent them to the front". He finished the war in Germany served under Gen. Patton. He probably was witness to some of the death camps they liberated but he never liked to talk about it. I wish I had pressed him and asked him more about it when he was alive.

I wish he was here today to see the new monument but he might have been very matter of fact about it. His was a generation that went a did what had to be done. Performed acts they never imagined they would. Witnessed things they never wanted to witness. Looked at evil that no man should ever have to look at. When it was done they came back to their girlfriends and wives and raised families. They built in the aftermath of a devestating conflict a nation greater than any has ever been. They were a great generation and I hope we can live up to the greatness they left us.

Posted by Starhawk at 04:10 PM | Media | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Media on Memorial Day

Notes on watching TV from Arlington:
There was a prayer before the speeches. Fox covered it. MSNBC decided that their talking heads were more important and instead focused on a pciture of the tomb while you could slightly hear the prayer but couldn't make out the words in the background. They didn't cut back to live coverage until after Gen. Myers had already started speaking.
The MSNBC producer should be fired.
CNN was reporting news from Iraq at this point.

After Myers, Rummy spoke and got a huge ovation. I think he was got off guard and was a bit choked up by the support.

Bush's speech was fine except the camera seems to keep bouncing around while he was speaking. What was going on here? It was the same on all three news networks, probably a pool camera.
Someone else should be fired over this.

Posted by Starhawk at 11:11 AM | Media | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 30, 2004

Star Jasmine

As Rachel pointed out not too long ago the Star or Confederate Jasmine is not a jasmine at all. It is wonderfully fragrant and quite an aggressive plant in warm climes where it is also evergreen.
Like a lot of nice smelling and looking things it is also poison to ingrest so keep your dogs and cats away from it.
We had four we planted quite some time ago on either side of the walk leading up to the house. For a couple of years we maintained them as bushes then one day I got the bright idea of buying two arbors to straddle the walkway. What you see below is the result.
Yes you can walk under those, they are over seven feet high.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

They usually go into bloom around mid-april which they did but oddly enough they still have some blooms though not as many as 4 weeks ago.
This is what they look like close up.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

May 28, 2004

Rose of Sharon

You know it is funny but when we lived in New York I heard my wife say that there was one plant she had always wanted, that was a Gardenia.
Well I bought a Gardenia, as a matter of fact I bought several. We had to leave them in the pots since we didn't have a yard and they all died eventually. No I didn't buy them all at the same time, this was over a period of years.

Now we have a big yard and 4 or 5 sizable Gardenia bushes growing on the property (more on those in a few days) but every time we go to a nursery now there seems to be another plant she sees that she has always wanted one of.
The latest is this Rose of Sharon, which we are going to put in the ground tomorrow. This is not is fact a rose at all, it is a Hibiscus or more accurately it is a Hibiscus Syriacus. It is rather nice looking and should make a good addition to the garden.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved


I wrote a few days ago about my daughter losing one of her cats (the oldest).
When I got home today and was walking around out back I passed the place where we had buried him and noticed the picture below. Today was the first day of summer break and I guess she got to thinking went outside picked some flowers and put them by the rose that marks the spot. That was very nice, she surprizes me a lot sometimes.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

Posted by Starhawk at 10:44 PM | Home and Family | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 26, 2004

Be on the Lookout

These are the people that the FBI is looking for is you see any of them contact the feds.

Graphic of FBI seal and seven Be On the Lookout Suspects Photograph of and link to Amer El-Maati Photograph of and link to Aafia Siddiqui Photograph of and link to Adnan G. El Shukrijumah Graphic of FBI seal and seven Be On the Lookout Suspects
Graphic of FBI seal and seven Be On the Lookout Suspects Photograph of and link to Fazul Abdullah Mohammed Photograph of and link to Adam Gadahn Photograph of and link to Abderraouf Jdey Photograph of and link to Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani Graphic of FBI seal and seven Be On the Lookout Suspects
Graphic of FBI seal and seven Be On the Lookout Suspects

Code for this can be found here

Posted by Starhawk at 09:01 PM | War on Terror | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 24, 2004

A Sad Passing

My daughter's cat Mystie passed away this morning. He wasn't in any pain and quietly left during the night. My daughter didn't want to sleep so I ended up watching slayers anime with her until 1:30am when I was able to convince her to go to bed.
I of course was a zombie this morning.
My wife was working late, got home after I had left in the morning and found the cat dead. She went took it into the back, dug a hole and planted the rose below (Darlow's Enigma) over it.
The kid wants to plant a red rose next to it also so we are looking for a mini to put there.


RIP Mystie.


Posted by Starhawk at 10:00 PM | Home and Family | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

May 23, 2004

Death Watch

My daughter is in the den with her cat watching it die.

There is nothing we can do. We went to the Vet a few weeks ago, came back with meds and he just got worse.

It is hard on her. Her previous cat died when she was 5. He was already old by then having been passed down from my step son. We took her to the North Shore Animal Shelter on Long Island a few weeks later and got this one which she named after the first. That was 10 years ago.

I just went in there. She has him wrapped up in a towel and is crying. I am crying too.

Posted by Starhawk at 09:39 PM | Dogs and Cats | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Chicken Inflation

Based on personal experience over the last few weeks I would say there is an inflation problem starting to develop.
Item: Taco Bell raised the price of a chicken chulupa from $1.89 to 1.99.
Item: Church's was even worse raising the price of 12 chicken tenders from $7.99 to 9.99.

Has there been a price spike in chicken that I have not heard about?

Posted by Starhawk at 06:51 PM | Economics | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

May 22, 2004

Another new blog address

Tony Rosen is the winner of the name that snake contest.
(I know, I know. It wasn't much of a contest)
It is however a good thing since I didn't realize he had moved to a new blog address.
His blog is now located here.
Stop by while I adjust the blogroll.

Posted by Starhawk at 10:04 PM | Other Bloggers | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)


Bill has turned out another great essay, here are just a few of the money quotes.

Honor and shame trump everything in that world. A pithy sentence, eh? So instead, think about what it would take for you to kill your own daughter with a knife, with your bare hands, because she was seen in the company of a man not her husband or a relative? Think about that. Think long and hard. What kind of hatred and shame could drive a human being to do such a thing? What kind of pressures does that society bring to bear on an individual to make him capable of that? How different is their view of women, of family, of honor and shame? What would it take for you to murder your daughter with a knife, or a knotted cord – with your own two hands and against her pleading, her protestations, and her begging for her life? If your response wasn’t “there is nothing that could make me do that,” then stop reading right here and get the hell off my property.
Nick Berg was nothing more than an animal sacrifice to them. That is Radical Islam.
If you can compare Abu Ghraib to a Nazi death camp with a straight face then you have never been to either Abu Ghraib, or a Nazi death camp, or either – that is patently obvious, and it would be comically so if the stakes were not so monumentally high. Having never been exposed to genuine evil, you have literally no conception whatsoever of what it looks and smells and tastes like

More where that came from. Read the whole thing.

Good Catch

If you have to drive over something in your driveway this is a pretty good thing to flatten.
I must have done it this morning when I started my errands but I didn't notice it until I got back and walked to the mailbox.

The first commenter who can id this beauty gets 25 starhawk bonus points.

The wife, by the way, knew what is was right away.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

Update: That didn't take long. Tony gets the bonus points. I am guessing he has seen a copperhead before. I took the kid and showed her so she would know exactly what she should stay away from.

Posted by Starhawk at 08:47 PM | Home and Family | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)


I had a busy day filled with used car salesmen, computer salesman, automobile service people and snakes.
Hopefully I will be able to clue you in on it all but right now I have to check out Bill Whittle's new(2 part) essay.

This may take a while.
See you there.

Posted by Starhawk at 04:56 PM | Other Bloggers | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 21, 2004

Rudy Giuliani

Quote of the Day

We're all hurt, We're all damaged. We're all very, very angry. And we're all feeling the loss of heroes that we love.

Rudy Giuliani, May 19, 2004

Methley Plum - Fruit

I got home today and thought to check my plum tree since I had to chase away some deer this morning. Sure enough they had raided it last night and stripped some 20 or 30 plums from the lower limbs.
I also noticed that there was all of a sudden some very edible fruit as you see below.
The wife and I spent the next hour throwing some deer netting that we just got this week over the tree to prevent the deer and birds from eating the rest.
The picture of the Methley in bloom is here.

This is the first time in three years that we were able to get some fruit from the tree before it was fully stripped by the vermin.

These went pretty fast and while they were not very big they were very very good.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

May 20, 2004

Chistopher Hitchens

Quote of the Day

But speaking here in my capacity as a polished, sophisticated European as well, it seems to me the laugh here is on the polished, sophisticated Europeans. They think Americans are fat, vulgar, greedy, stupid, ambitious and ignorant and so on. And they've taken as their own, as their representative American, someone who actually embodies all of those qualities.

Chistopher Hitchens
via Karol who got it from Ken

May 18, 2004

End of an Era

The famous local hero Laurence Simon of Amish Tech Support is shutting down ATS.
Do not fear becuase that does not mean he is leaving blogging, he is just moving to a different home.
Over the years many people(not I) have told Lair that he is full of crap and he has taken that as his new blog and tag line combined.
Stop by and say hi at

Posted by Starhawk at 08:36 PM | Other Bloggers | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1)

May 16, 2004

Win but don't wave the flag

This latest PC outrage comes to us from the USOC, full story at Michele's.

American athletes have been warned not to wave the U.S. flag during their medal celebrations at this summer's Olympic Games in Athens, for fear of provoking crowd hostility and harming the country's already-battered public image.

We need to organize an email campaign to tell the USOC what we think. I know that my readership is not enough but if someone with big numbers(hint Glenn) got behind it we could let them know what real americans think about this BS.

Update: This is the email for USOC Media and Public Affairs, ,
write often and tell them what you think.

Posted by Starhawk at 09:45 PM | Politics | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

March Sunrise

I was cleaning out my pictures and I came across this one I took in March, probably after walking my daughter to the bus stop.
The tree in the center that looks dead is one of the ones we had taken down two weeks ago so this is a one of a kind.
Click for the full size, or at least the smallest I could cut it to.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

May 15, 2004

Busy Day

Been real busy with meetings and such.
Have to take the wife out to dinner tonight for our 14th(or is it 15th) wedding anniversary which was actually on the 12th.

The latest storm to hit blogland seems to be the change in pricing that will come with MT 3.0. I am still trying to figure it out but you can read more at Kevin's.
It looks like MT might lose a lot of users over this which they have brought onto themselves.

Check the blogroll for other reading matter.

Posted by Starhawk at 04:43 PM | Home and Family | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

May 13, 2004

Mr. Lincoln

This is the first effort by the wife to take a picture with my digital camera. Not bad for the first try but the P50 is a pretty easy camera once you figure out a few things.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

This Mr. Lincoln is an older Hydrid Tea. It is one of the classic roses that still wins or places high in a lot of shows. Very fragrant too.

Another thing about this one is that it is one of the 10 roses we picked up from Wal Mart last fall for $5 a piece. I wasn't sure any of them would make it but at least eight of them are in the ground now and doing ok.
Quite a bargain when you think about it.

The reason she was moved to take this was one, it was our anniversary today and two, I have been coming home so late I have not been able to get a whole lot of decent pictures.

This morning she saw me trying to take a picture of this one with a flash before I left. All things considered it didn't come out badly.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

May 10, 2004

Garden Joys

I was sitting outside yesterday near my Firecraker Plant when a Hummingbird popped by.
Of course I didn't have my camera when I needed it and I knew that if I moved to get it the bird would be long gone so I just stayed still.
It went from bloom to bloom of the plant going into maybe twenty. I was in awe since I was less than 6 feet away and they hardly ever come that close to people.
After a few minutes of this another one came by and buzzed the first at high speed then they both flew off.
I love watching hummingbirds.

Posted by Starhawk at 11:22 PM | Misc. | Comments (1) | TrackBack (1)

May 09, 2004

This sucks

I was catching up on my blog reading when I came across this on Merde in France

I fear for jews in Europe. This kind of thing is just beyond the pale. I wonder what would happen if a muslim graveyard had been desecrated instead of a jewish one.


May 08, 2004


Quote of the Day

Hooper: I'm not going to waste my time arguing with a man who's lining up to be a hot lunch.

Jaws - 1975

She's Back

Rachel Lucas is back.
Go over a welcome her back.
Since I never took her link down I can't say I didn't expect it.
I am certainly glad to see that someone who hasn't posted in months and still gets tons more hits than I do is a least putting new content up.
I am sure that all those who still click over to her site are happy too.

Posted by Starhawk at 09:56 AM | Other Bloggers | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 07, 2004

New Roses

I am running a little behind since these are already in the ground but they are going to be my purchases for this year.
They are from left to right, Bengal Tiger, Sombreuil and Pinata. Hopefully I will have some nicer pictures of them before the end of the summer, weather and deer permitting.

Photo by Starhawk - All Rights Reserved

They are from Chamblee's in Tyler Texas.

May 05, 2004

I should be in bed

I should be in bed but I had to catch the end of the Yankees game. A come from behind 10-8 win with A-Rod hitting his 350th homer, the youngest player in the history of the majors to reach that milestone.
The Yanks are red hot right now.
The only bad thing is that Sierra who has been a major part of this streak might be injured for a while.

Posted by Starhawk at 12:15 AM | Yankees | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 04, 2004

Best Plans

I had plans to do some posts tonight since I don't have class but I got home and had to do one thing after another and just sat down.
First I had to spray some roses.

As I was doing that the guy who cut down my trees came to pick up the old camper we had given him in trade for that work.

Then the network was down.

I need to take a shower and I might not make another post tonight.
Lots of good stuff to read elsewhere just check out my blogroll, I do.

Posted by Starhawk at 10:00 PM | Housekeeping | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

May 02, 2004

New Spam - Help

I have noticed that one of my entries had the word job in it and somehow a link had been inserted there.
I deleted the tag and saved the entry twice and both time the offending tag was still there. I have seen this on other blogs too.

Has anyone else noticed this?


Posted by Starhawk at 11:42 AM | Housekeeping | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)


Sometime either today or Monday I will roll by the 50,000 visitors mark.

That means that in under two years I have had as many visits as Glenn gets in about 12 hours so I am not crowing about the numbers but I do want to thank all of you who have stopped by and who keep coming by.

Thank you.

Posted by Starhawk at 09:53 AM | Housekeeping | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

May 01, 2004

Blogging and Cleavage

I have been so buzy the last weeks and especially this last one that I entirely missed out on this dust up until today.

Since this is turning into a pretty common occurance I have added a new category to keep track of them.

If you missed out like I did you can come up to speed by reading Kevin's blog and don't miss all the comments which is where all the real action is.

Posted by Starhawk at 08:26 PM | Blog Wars | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)