Published on March 8 2007

... unless you are a burglar with a healthy stash of dope back at home. Stevens Point Journal - Man reports break-in suspect -- himself
Who says there's no such thing as an honest criminal?Police dispatchers were startled by a call Saturday evening from a man who claimed to be staging an unsuccessful break-in at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1919 Wyatt Ave. The man, 24-year-old Stevens Point resident Zachary Brandl, said he had been using a metal shovel to batter his way through the church doors when he decided to solicit help from the police. Police officers, who previously had been alerted to a suspicious-looking man in the area, encountered Brandl in the church parking lot, where he had been awaiting their arrival. According to police reports, Brandl told officers he had hoped to get married in the church.
I'm wondering if this guy already had a girlfriend? If he did....Sweetie, I think we need to talk..... More likely, he was casing the church just in case he ever found a woman equal to him in her mental prowess.
 Upon searching Brandl, officers found a prescription bottle containing marijuana, at which point Brandl offered to take the police to his home, where he said he was storing more drugs. True to his word, Brandl directed officers to his house, where he showed them a cache of marijuana. Brandl then further volunteered information that he was keeping stolen prescription muscle relaxants in a box in his cabinet. Police eventually arrested Brandl on charges of criminal damage to property, possession of THC, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of prescription drugs. Police detected no trace of alcohol abuse.
I'm thinkin' they didn't look closely enough-- probably because they were so busy wiping the tears of laughter from their eyes. It has, after all, been a very long winter.....

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Published on March 8 2007

All I hear in the discussions of the candidates is whether "Hillary is feminine enough" or whether Obama "is black enough", let alone how John Edwards is a better "woman's candidate" (WTH is a "woman's candidate", anyway??? Should I or do I vote differently because I am the proud owner of a double-X?? Dumbest thing I've ever heard.). I still don't know Obama's foreign policy stance. I still don't know what or if Hillary intends to do about the healthcare crisis. I am real tired of this personality politics cr@p or who is the "better minority candidate". Damn Democrats. /grumble. Captains Quarters
The first black president will be the candidate of African descent who wins the most Electoral College votes. The first female president will be the candidate with two X chromosomes who takes the oath of office on January 20 of the given year. Perhaps the Democrats might dispense with the gender and ethnic politics and just focus on policy instead.

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Published on March 6 2007

dr2.JPGNobody is going to recognize this place by the time I get done. :-D dr1.JPG Yes, yes, I know. There is painting to be done here!!

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Published on March 5 2007

.... in our matching Tshirts, all USW-logo'd up for the first day of local contract negotiations. Looks like our mommy dressed us this morning, doesn't it?
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With apologies to Dave Edmunds, work can be fun when you have a great crew like mine:
"Me and my buddies just like to go We're having fun. Everybody knows. We don't fuss and we never cry. We're just grooving, taking in the sights. Me and the boys. Just me and the boys. Me and the boys."
BTW, this was the *only* break we took allllllllll day. I'm a slavedriver, so they tell me. ;-)

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Published on March 4 2007

...just in time for class beginning tomorrow morning!! (I'm itching to get back at it.) Listen to me, lol..... "office". 8-| How highfalutin' do I sound? How about "original 1920's parlor formerly used as a heavily curtained bedroom now returned to its original sunlit glory and quickly filling with computer and various other electronic equipment removed from the living room." Okay. "Office".
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Next is trying to move in an approximately three ton file cabinet and trying to figure out what to do with those dumb little speakers all over the desktop. At least the big one can hide behind the desk.

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Published on March 3 2007

Liechtenstein: no retaliation for Swiss invasion | The Guardian | Guardian Unlimited
Swiss soldiers accidentally crossed into neighbouring Liechtenstein above yesterday. The Swiss army is not renowned for its aggressive expeditionary adventures - but it does appear to have accidentally invaded Liechtenstein. According to the Swiss daily Blick, around 170 infantry soldiers from the famously neutral country wandered more than a mile across the unmarked border with the tiny principality. The incident happened yesterday morning and the Swiss troops turned back - probably slightly sheepishly - after they realised their mistake.
Oooops. So much for that famous neutrality. I think I hear what may be the WORST butt-chewing in the world going on right about now. Makes you wonder if Switzerland will be denounced in the UN? After all, they were carrying WMD on their foray into tiny Liechtenstein.
As well as the obligatory Swiss army knives, the troops were armed with assault rifles - however, they had no ammunition, Mr Reist said. Markus Amman, an interior ministry spokesman, said nobody in Liechtenstein had even noticed the soldiers. "Its not like they stormed over here with attack helicopters or something," he said.

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Published on February 28 2007

16 to 18 INCHES OF SNOW???? Think I'll stay home and paint my fireplace. With the curtains closed.
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Published on February 27 2007

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Please wish us all luck, k?

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Published on February 27 2007

We got next-to-nothing out of last weekend's monster blizzard (sticking my tongue out at the central Wis. relatives); only about 5-6 inches of new snow in those horrendous winds. It makes me a little nervous when the blurb scrolling across the bottom of the TV screen mentions that there "might be a lull" in the blizzard coming our way late Thursday afternoon. Here it comes. A foot predicted, so far. Sigh. I used to go through weather.com or other weather sites, when I discovered this simple shortcut to the National Weather Service forecasts. You type "weather.gov", then a /, and then the zip code. Works great, and easy enough for even a memory-challenged babe like me to keep in mind. Now where did I put the snow shovel?

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Published on February 26 2007

UNs top court clears Serbia of genocide during Bosnian war
THE HAGUE AFP - The UNs top court on Monday cleared Serbia of direct involvement in genocide during the war in Bosnia, but said Belgrade did breach international law by failing to prevent the 1995 massacre at Srebrenica. "The court finds that Serbia has not committed genocide," ICJ president Rosalyn Higgins said. The ICJ found that "massive killings" and atrocities occured throughout Bosnia with Bosnian Muslims being the victims in many cases. However, it stressed most events did not amount to genocide because "the evidence did not show that these terrible acts were accompanied by the specific intent to destroy a group that is the required proof of genocide," Higgins told journalists after the judgement. The ICJ found only one act of genocide -- the massacre at Srebrenica of nearly 8,000 Muslims by Bosnian Serb troops -- and said there was not enough evidence to suggest Belgrade was directly responsible. However, it ruled that Serbia had failed in its responsibility under the 1948 genocide convention to try and prevent the killings.
Let me see if I have this right. Lots of killings happened, but it was just a coincidence that most of the victims were a particular nationality and religion? After all, the ICJ found only one act of genocide. It was only one little massacre. ICJ President Judge Rosalyn Higgins said the court concluded that the Srebrenica massacre did constitute genocide, but that other mass killings of Bosnian Muslims did not. I never knew there were "levels of genocide".
While the ICJ ruled that Belgrade had given "considerable military and financial support" to the Bosnian Serb leadership, the court found it did not mastermind the slaughter in Srebrenica. "The decision to kill the adult male population of the Muslim community was taken by some members of the main staff of the Bosnian Serb army but without instructions from or effective control by Serbia," the court said. But Higgins stressed the case had also "conclusively proved" that the Serbian leadership, and former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic in particular, "were fully aware ... that massacres were likely to occur".
The court found that Serbia supplied "considerable military and financial support available" to the Bosnian Serbs but that it had not known they had genocidal intent. They "were aware" it was "likely", but there ends their responsibility. Ahhh, I understand now. Blame it on the military. Who can control them, after all? They have guns! I had wondered aloud during class what the reaction of the Muslim world would be if the decision happened to go Serbia's way, considering the reaction to a few cartoons and a comment by the Pope. Surely, if Serbia was found not guilty, the reaction would be incredible, wouldn't it? My prof forwarded the question to one of his TA's in another class, who happens to be a Muslim from Bosnia. Her response follows:
Dr. K, this is a difficult question, and I am not sure if I can help with it. I am willing to try, though. First of all, there is a problem within the question. Bosnia is not predominantly Muslim - before the war Bosnia had about 44% of Muslim population; now it must be either close to that or even less, after so many people left, and many were killed. So, even though, Bosnia has high percentage of Muslim population, it is usually not considered Muslim. More than fifty percent of Bosnian population is Christian, mostly Eastern Orthodox, but also Catholic. We also have a Jewish minority. Even though, some Arabic countries have tried to be involved in rebuilding Mosques in Bosnia, and have tried to finance some religious schools, etc., most of the Bosnian Muslim population is not religious in the sense that they follow some of the most sacred Muslim traditions. Very few Bosnian Muslims pray five times a day, and it is very difficult to find a Bosnian (regardlss of religion) who does not drink!!! (I am still looking to find one). Even though the Muslim world, so to say, did sympathize with Bosnian Muslims during the genocide, I doubt that the decision would bring about any type of radical reaction within the Muslim population. And lastly, in my mind, there is honestly no way that Serbia can be found not guilty on all counts - the evidence is overwhelming. Overall, I do not think that decision (whatever it might be) will carry much importance for the Muslim world, and most likely than not, Serbia will be found guilty on at least some accounts.
Will be interesting watching the news over the next few days, I think.

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