Saturday, December 31, 2005


I am following Punctilious's instructions (Carnival of the Recipes News) with two different recipes of "balls"... One is made of meat and the other is made of cocoa.

The New Year's edition will be hosted by Caterwauling. The theme is holiday balls, as in little round foods you chase around your plate and roll down the front of your fancy shirt or gown! It should be a good time! (, 12/27/05.)

The first recipe is taken from the smorgasbord. I ate several homemade Swedish meat balls during X-mas. Here is an alternative recipe of meaty balls.

I have been talking to the Swedish Chef, and he directed me to check out Jone's Swedish Meatballs at the Scandinavian Cooking site. My personal favorite variant of meatball recipe is the Greek version, Keftédes. The following recipe is roughly translated [together with some additional notes by the editor ;)] from the book, Vi lagar grekiskt ("We are cooking Greek dishes", ISBN 91-20-06133-1), by Hará Ljunggren.


  • 1 kg ground beef
  • 1 big yellow onion, minced
  • 3 table spoons parsley, finely chopped
  • 7 - 8 slices white bread
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 table spoon oil
  • salt and pepper
  • rosemary
  • oregano

Dunk the white bread in water and then squeeze out the liquid. Mix the ground beef with the onion, bread, and the rest of the ingredients in a big bowl. Let the mixture "rest" for 60 minutes. Roll the meat mixture into pretty big balls, and then roll them in flour. Add margarine in a frying pan and let the balls "rock'n'roll around the clock" in the pan until they are brown all over. How about serving ouzo together with the meatballs? (EGO, CARNIVAL OF THE RECIPES, 04/16/05.)

It's now time to heat up things a bit and dig into a PC debate. Here is the story of a name change of a sweet ball... From my post, MIND YOUR LANGUAGE.

After I read this story (Metro boss resigns after racist "joke"), I had to reflect on how the use of the "n-word" has changed. In my childhood, you could buy a pastry called "negerboll" in Swedish. They have now changed the name to "chocolate ball". For more details, read the article, Sweet leaves sour taste with the PC. (EGO, 01/17/05.)

If you are curious about the chocolate ball (Chokladboll in Swedish), check out Eileen Goltz's No Bake Chocolate Balls and the post, Happy Birthday, darling! by A cat in the kitchen.

Here is an quote from World Famous Recipes:

Carnival of the Recipes #72 will be hosted at Caterwauling and that theme is Holiday balls as in round food (rumballs, meatballs etc.) (A lot of people will be attending New Year's Eve Balls.) (, 12/24/05.)

If you have an interest in dancing, e.g, ballroom dance, read my post, LET'S DANCE.

Friday, December 30, 2005


Morris is in the spotlight!


Morris is also a fan of chile pepper! For more chile peppers, go to my other blog.


Check out Friday Ark #67 at the Modulator.


No, Martin is not in Hungary this time, it's just one of his infrequent guest bloggers wishing you all the best for the year 2006.

To give you an example of "all the best," here is a picture of the vehicle I purchased recently, a 1989 Cadillac Seville Elegante:

Cars like this are pretty inexpensive to buy and reward you with great reliability and a level of comfort and safety that the owners of a typical Euro-peon-mobile cannot even conceive of.

And if you ask me, these older models look much better than the current ones!

Tuesday, December 27, 2005


Do you play online games? It was fascinating to read about a MMORPG called Project Entropia. Here is an excerpt from the article, Worlds without end.

Land and other in-game property has been sold for huge sums: one "Project Entropia" player paid $26,500 for an island in the game's virtual world last year, and has already made his money back by selling hunting and mining rights to other players. Trade in virtual items is now worth more than $100m each year. (, 12/14/05.)

Related: My post, GAMING INDUSTRY.

Sunday, December 25, 2005


I know about "bag in a box " wine, but have you heard about a cat in a wine box? Morris is now "sponsored" by Torres...

It is a Merry Catzmas! at Watermark.


I will be opening the doors to Blue Chip Café in beginning of 2006, if everything is going according to the plan. I am writing on the partner agreement and the constitution for the economic association. We want to get in touch with individuals who are interested in our business idea. Here is an excerpt from my post, NEW FORM OF BUSINESS ENTERPRISE.

One of the business areas is to create a meeting place for entrepreneurs, inventors and investors. The name for this activity is IdeaTank. The "water cooler" [via CotC] conversation will have a central role at our place... The atmosphere should be like a modern version of an old coffee-house. Read the article, The internet in a cup, for more information. (EGO, 12/04/05.)

Talking about entrepreneurship, it was interesting to read the Hot List in Entrepreneur magazine. [Via Small Business Trends.] Tea is listed as a "hot" item. We will be selling quality tea at our internet café. [Editor's note: It is pretty funny to see that EGO is one the first page if you are "googling" for "reasons for being an entrepreneur." I hope that "visitor #119,945" found what he or she was looking for...]

Saturday, December 24, 2005


Today we are celebrating Yule (Jul in Swedish). I will soon sit down at the Julbord ("Yule table"), a.k.a the smorgasbord with Xmas food. What's your favorite dish?

Holiday Specials

I wish we had Wal-Mart or Tesco here in Sweden...

[Editor's note: Newsflash! EGO is a "capitalistpig"!]

Related: My post, COMMERCIAL XMAS.

Friday, December 23, 2005


I don't really remember all the ingredients for this recipe, so I say: Take what you have and follow the stir-frying tips at ;) We could make it into a quiz... Please list the ingredients you see in the picture and I will create a new recipe in the near future!


From one side...


to the other side...


and upside down!


For more animal pictures, check out the Friday Ark #66 at the Modulator.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


EGO is claiming Sopron, a.k.a Ödenburg in German, as a part of Politburo Diktat's new blog empire. The location is close to the colorblind Atrios, so I have to be prepared for a "hot dog fight"... For more on the cold war and my adventures in Austria and Hungary, read my post, PAN-EUROPEAN PICNIC 1989.

Fire Tower, Sopron, Hungary.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Holiday Greetings

Season's Greetings and Best Wishes for a Happy New Year!

[Editor's comment: I want to thank my guest blogger Elizabeth Anema for the holiday picture of Morris. Morris has added salmon and tuna to his wish list. His favorite fish is pollack from Alaska.


I wouldn't mind if you follow Glenn Reynolds's X-mas / holiday advice... You are welcome to check out my wish list at Amazon and Froogle.]


This has been cross-posted from Gus Van Horn, and back-dated in deference to "Morris Claws".

I'll be visiting with family over the next week as I take my annual Christmas hiatus from blogging. There will be no roundup next week and I may wait until I am back another week before I re-start these midweek roundups.


Bothenook wonders, and the sailor-like language of his title is entirely appropriate here, why a court has granted an injunction based upon what sound like one woman's schizophrenic delusions. Here, he quotes a story from the Santa Fe New Mexican.
[Crazywoman Colleen] Nestler's application for a restraining order was accompanied by a six-page typed letter in which she said Letterman used code words, gestures and "eye expressions" to convey his desires for her.

She wrote that she began sending Letterman "thoughts of love" after his show began in 1993, and that he responded in code words and gestures, asking her to come East.

She said he asked her to be his wife during a televised "teaser" for his show by saying, "Marry me, Oprah." Her letter said Oprah was the first of many code names for her, and that the coded vocabulary increased and changed with time.
Crazywoman? That's my touch.

The General, in his quest for self-improvement, has found that he must leave the world of blogging poorer.
After a long and agonizing period of deliberation, I've made the difficult decision to close this blog down. While I immensely enjoy blogging, the time it requires makes it incompatible with attending law school. Thanks to everyone who dropped by, especially my long-term readers.
I'll miss the Benjo Blog, as I am sure the General's other readers will. Stop by to say farewell to his blog and to wish him luck if you haven't already.


Bubblehead once again passes on a story too compelling to skip. He quotes the UK Guardian.
The use of a Trident nuclear missile, or its successor, would breach international law, the government is warned today. Even the threat to use nuclear weapons is unlawful, ministers are warned in a legal opinion by leading human rights lawyers.

"They say use of Trident would infringe what the international court of justice calls the 'intransgressible' - or absolute - requirement that a distinction must be drawn between combatants and non-combatants. Nuclear weapons would also breach the requirement that use of force in self-defence must be proportionate."

"A Trident warhead would be inherently indiscriminate," says Rabinder Singh, QC, and professor Christine Chinkin of the London School of Economics, in a legal opinion for the campaigning group, Peace Rights... [bold added]
I think this is nearly the perfect lead-in to ...


... this post, by Diana Hsieh, about Ayn Rand's thoughts on total war.
We may safely say that Ayn Rand was an advocate of fighting only selfish wars for the purpose of defeating the enemy. That's exactly what it means to fight a total war, in that the guiding purpose of all political and military choices must be to end the conflict as quickly as possible by thoroughly defeating the enemy, with as little loss of life on your own side as possible, never sacrificing the lives of your own soldiers for the sake of the enemy. As a general rule, that method also preserves the most lives of enemy soldiers and civilians, even while eliminating the threat they pose. For example, by dropping the bomb on Nagasaki and Hiroshima, rather than fighting a bloody land war, we saved hundreds of thousands of lives on both sides, particularly and most importantly our own.

Provided that the war itself is legitimate, the responsibility for any and all loss of enemy life, whether soldier or civilian, falls squarely upon the shoulders of the enemy leaders who created the conflict. And ultimately, the majority of people are responsible for their leaders -- whether by active choice in a democracy or passive acceptance in a dictatorship. As for those in genuine opposition, they cannot rightly expect the other countries threatened by their government to sacrifice themselves for their sake. As Ayn Rand so vehemently said in one of those Ford Hall Forum Q&As, that's one reason why our choice of political leaders matters so very much.
Good, passionate stuff. And, oh yeah. She gives some very good blogging advice, too.


The Resident Egoist points to a good essay on "sustainability" he found at TCS Daily (formerly known as Tech Central Station). From the essay, which reminds me of an excellent book, The Doomsday Myth, I read ages ago:
Fifty years ago we had enough's there was widespread concern, made worse by the oil embargo, that the world was running out of oil. Yet, fifty years later, we still have thirty years supply left. How can this be? The reason, of course, is that it costs money to discover new oil, and there is no economic incentive for the petroleum industry to find more than is necessary ...

Robert Tracy posts about an amazing woodblock print over at Illustrated Ideas.
In every way this is a perfect picture. In composition, arial perspective, in the placement of the solitary figure and in color harmony. This is a 20th Century master. He draws like a comic book artist from the American 1950's. Yet the result looks like a serious watercolor painting. Not that woodblock art is inferior to the well known other media....

The Gaijin Biker did some nice detective work in this post, which is a good followup to last week's news on Wikipedia.
I haven't dug into all the pedophilia-related claims made in the OfficialWire press release, and I'm not inclined to. (A Wikipedia administrator responds to the charges here.) But readers should know that the activist group it mentions appears to be a fabrication. And the release itself, like the class action lawsuit, comes from a man with an apparent grudge against Wikipedia, and whose past Internet dealings raise serious questions of their own. [one link omitted]

Myrhaf, a fairly new blogger, is also a pretty bloody good one. And if you're not reading his blog daily, what's wrong with you? Today, he discusses our rather ... er ... Byzantine political system.
Polemics is necessary in political argument, but it's not sufficient. In addition to condemning the bad, we need to understand what we're fighting for. The emphasis of today's political argument is not on giving us reasons to value a politician or a cause, but reasons to revile the other side. Can you blame people if they tune politics out? Who cares about two sides pointing a finger at each other?

During the Clinton presidency I was disappointed when The American Spectator shifted its focus from more theoretical pieces to investigative journalism into Clinton's scandals. "This is what the liberals do," I thought. "Isn't conservatism supposed to be about ideas?"

Conservatism was once the side with all the ideas. What ideas one hears still come from the right, but there has been a marked decrease in big ideas in the last 10 years. The last big semi-cause the Republicans fought for was the Contract For America. Tax cuts and war against militant Islam are good ideas, but the ideological arguments for them have been weak and drowned out by liberal campaigns to hobble Bush with scandal.

Conservatives have given up any lip service they used to pay to laissez-faire capitalism. They have accepted the welfare state. They might want a little less government, but none of them seriously advocates radical free market solutions.
"Byzantine" here, of course, is not being used in exactly its usual sense, but you'll have to pay him a visit to see what I mean.


As a tribute to Chap's often terse style, I'll imitate him here.

This will make your blood boil.


David Veksler, who spent his childhood in the Soviet Ukraine, has a really good post up about rush hour.

Why should have Soviet bureaucrats care about how long we had to wait for non-existent figs? Why should the bureaucrats in charge of the Dallas roads care about the lives squandered away in the daily commute?

I know who did care about our plight: the bazaar merchants who sold us chickens and potatoes. They were tough bargainers, but they were very interested in meeting the wants of their customers. The American supermarket is a bazaar on a grand scale, where I can not only find dried figs 24/7, but a dozen other fruits I have never heard of.

We trust entrepreneurs with our bread, so why don't we trust them with our roads? To a politician, each traffic-plagued driver is a liability, to be appeased by a some highly visible but most likely useless project. How might an entrepreneur look at a traffic jam, if the State did not monopolize transportation?

To an entrepreneur, each tired and miserable driver is a goldmine....


I don't expect this to be my last blog post before the holidays, but, just in case, I wish all my readers and friends out there a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

-- CAV


It is almost one year since the tsunami disaster. Sweden's Foreign Minister, Laila Freivalds, is under pressure and is now blaming the Swedish travel operator. She has admitted that she didn't know the location of the Phuket Province...

I have signed (#37062) a petition called "Kick out Freivalds Now" ("Sparka Freivalds Nu" in Swedish).

For more information, go to The South-East Asia Earthquake and Tsunami Blog and read my posts, COMPASSIONATE ALTRUISM IS NOT THE RIGHT AID TO THE TSUNAMI VICTIMS and TSUNAMI.


Friday, December 16, 2005



Check out Friday Ark #65 at the Modulator.


In the news: Kista petrol bomb claimed by "al-Qaeda" group.

Early on Thursday, a Molotov cocktail was thrown at a voting station in the Stockholm suburb of Kista hours before people across Iraq turned out to choose the first four-year term parliament since the downfall of former dictator Saddam Hussein in 2003. (, 12/16/05.)

Go to Pajamas Media for more news on the election in Iraq.

More news: More details emerge on arrest of "bin Laden's man in Sweden".

According to the Czech daily Mlada Fronta Dnes the man is Oussamma Kassir, a 39-year-old Lebanese man who emigrated to Sweden as a teenager in 1984. He's now wanted by the FBI for terrorist offences. The US authorities say he's suspected of trying to set up an al-Qaeda terrorist camp in the U.S. state of Oregon in 2002. (, 12/14/05.)


Wednesday, December 14, 2005


Cross-posted from Gus Van Horn.


If you haven't been to Armchair Intellectual lately, you should stop by. Gideon Reich's most recent entry discusses a Charles Krauthammer column I recently mentioned in passing here.
[C]ontrary to Krauthammer's claim there's is no justification or need for demonstrating "the moral superiority of the new Iraq" and certainly not via a trial of a mass murderer. Dr. Yaron Brook at ARI states the case most clearly in a press release from December 2003[.]

Bubblehead has a nice post up about his personal hero, RADM Fluckey, who commanded the USS Barb during WWII. He quotes the citation for Fluckey's Medal of Honor.
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Barb during her 11th war patrol along the east coast of China from 19 December 1944 to 15 February 1945. After sinking a large enemy ammunition ship and damaging additional tonnage during a running 2-hour night battle on 8 January, Comdr. Fluckey, in an exceptional feat of brilliant deduction and bold tracking on 25 January, located a concentration of more than 30 enemy ships in the lower reaches of Nankuan Chiang (Mamkwan Harbor). Fully aware that a safe retirement would necessitate an hour's run at full speed through the uncharted, mined, and rock-obstructed waters, he bravely ordered, "Battle station torpedoes!" In a daring penetration of the heavy enemy screen, and riding in 5 fathoms (9 m) of water, he launched the Barb's last forward torpedoes at 3,000 yard (2.7 km) range. Quickly bringing the ship's stern tubes to bear, he turned loose 4 more torpedoes into the enemy, obtaining 8 direct hits on 6 of the main targets to explode a large ammunition ship and cause inestimable damage by the resultant flying shells and other pyrotechnics. Clearing the treacherous area at high speed, he brought the Barb through to safety and 4 days later sank a large Japanese freighter to complete a record of heroic combat achievement, reflecting the highest credit upon Comdr. Fluckey, his gallant officers and men, and the U.S. Naval Service.

Two bloggers I follow are each tracking different controversies surrounding Wikipedia, the free internet encyclopedia. Both could have significant legal ramifications. First, the Gaijin Biker looks at a class action lawsuit against Wikipedia.
On the whole, Wikipedia is perhaps the most useful, accessible, diverse collection of information on the Internet. However, because (until very recently) anyone could add to it anonymously, some people doubted the accuracy of its information. And when a prankster posted a fake entry claiming his boss was involved in the assassination of JFK, the accountability of its editors for libelous content came into question.
But that's small potatoes compared to what Zach Oakes has been blogging lately. He quotes an organization I have not heard of before (and haven't had time to vet).
It has come to the attention of the Parents for the Online Safety of Children (POSC) that there is an underground cabal of pedophiles who edit wikipedia, trying to make wikipedia a distribution center for pedophile propaganda.


Since wikipedia allows pedophiles to edit wikipedia pages and view the IP addresses of children freely, we recommend that you use filtering software to block wikipedia from access in your household or school.
If this is true, I plan to boycott Wikipedia, too. Oakes followed up today, mentioning an entire blog, devoted to the controversy.

Stay tuned.

Update: The lawsuits appear to be related, and the POSC nonextistent.


Andy Clarkson keeps linking to Scott Holleran's movie reviews over at his blog, The Charlotte Capitalist, and until yesterday, I have kept forgetting to go back and read them. This review of Brokeback Mountain is very well-written and is making me seriously consider watching this movie, which I was probably going to pass up.
It is tempting to see Brokeback as too plain and a so-what factor creeps in, yet it's like one's first visit to the mountains, working its way into the mind only after the fire's put out, the tent's packed up and you're halfway home. Buried in realistic characters, wrapped in a taut script, the story of Jack and Ennis calls upon the distant memory of a deeply held romance, straight or gay, unrequited or unfulfilled that can rise without warning; a love, as Emmylou Harris sings on the soundtrack, that will never grow old.

In the most powerful scene, a visit to one lonely, loveless house, Brokeback redeems its tragic theme: that a single human life has value, that to value is to love, and to love is the nature of man. Lee brings earthly wisdom to a subject that is demanding, relevant and thought-provoking, letting men behave like men, roughhousing, hiding under hats, harboring untold desires and wanting to live happily ever after.
In today's intellectual atmosphere, where rational discussion of homosexuality is often drowned out by attacks on Western culture, heterosexuality as such, and even the desire to have children, I will admit that I figured all the hubub I'd been hearing about the movie was just so much cacophony emanating from the nihilistic left. Thanks to Holleran's review, I see that the movie deals with themes which transcend sexual orientation, and now, I will probably watch it.

And if the movie lives up to that review, Holleran's reviews might become my first stop when deciding which movies to see.

On the other hand, one pundit linked to by Myrhaf might disagree with Holleran on Brokeback Mountain. Be that as it may, see his entry on why Hollywood's box office receipts have been so bad lately.


And speaking of Myrhaf, he makes a nice connection here between the famous "Broken Window" economic fallacy described by Frederic Bastiat and leftist economic fallacies, making for a succinct answer to a liberal email titled, "A Day in the Life of Joe Republican."

Hint: The government breaks lotsa windows.


Amit Ghate
reviews a blog I plan to spend some time becoming acquainted with when I get a chance, The Dougout.
In perusing a relatively new blog, The Dougout, by Grant Jones (former contributor to the Fiftieth Star) I was impressed and/or informed by several posts.

This post describes an organization aimed at divesting from any companies trading with terror-supporting countries. This is a direct link to the organization in question.

This post has interesting figures on the Maoist Death toll, and points out some unrepentant groups still pushing this enormously evil philosophy.
There's more, so stop by Thrutch.

-- CAV


12-19-05: Update added to Wikipedia section.

Sunday, December 11, 2005


Did you watch the Miss World beauty contest? Miss Iceland (Miss World Northern Europe), Unnur Birna Vilhjalmsdottir, won the competition.

In the news: The English beauty who fled Taleban to contest Miss World - Times Online.



Morris is good at hiding. I have to learn from him... Next week I will be "hiding" and not be so active online. I will attend a course in business negotiation between Monday and Thursday. On Wednesday evening it is time for a X-mas dinner (smorgasbord) at a country club restaurant. If everything is working according to the plan, we could soon sign a contract for the new business venture. My business partners will have a meeting with a business consultant on Tuesday and then a meeting with the seller.



What do you think Yahoo's plan is by acquiring the social bookmarking called [Editor's comment: I have a page on, but I haven't added any items yet.] I wonder if it is a major trend with sharing stuff on the Internet. Yahoo bought the photo sharing company Flickr earlier this year. [Editor's note: My Flickr photo album.] I wonder if this is the next phase of the "neverending" search engine competition.

I am a member of the following networks:

Related: My post, SOCIAL NETWORKS.

Technorati tag: .

Saturday, December 10, 2005


December 13 is Saint Lucy (Santa Lucia in Swedish) Day. Lucia is serving you glögg and gingersnap cookies. She is dressed in a white gown and has candles in her hair. The mulled wine will warm you up during cold winter days.


  • 1 1/2 cups red wine
  • 1 1/2 cups ruby port wine
  • 1 cup vodka
  • 6 pods green cardamom
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 2 tablespoons grated orange zest
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 ounces slivered almonds
  • 1/2 tablespoon raisins

Go to All Recipes for the directions.

Wednesday, December 7, 2005


Stowe Boyd of Corante has received a Nokia N90 for testing. [Editor's comment: Where is my mobile phone? ;)] Personally, I am interested in looking at Qtek 9100.

Technorati tags:


Cross-posted from Gus Van Horn.

Bubblehead writes about submarine-owning countries in Asia. They all start with "I".
1. Quite a bit of news from some sub-owning countries in the Eastern Hemisphere today. The Hindu Times is reporting that India will be leasing two Akula-class boats from Russia....

2. [T]he Iranians announced that they have launched production on their own mini-submarines. I'm honestly not sure how recent this story is; the Tehran Times doesn't say anything, and I blogged back in May that the Iranians had announced that they had started production back then.

3. [Israel] will likely be buying two more Dolphin -class subs from Germany, with the German government picking up 1/3 of the cost. A reader directed my attention to this article at The Officers' Club, which discussed possible Israeli reactions to the incipient Iranian nuclear threat. (The reader was asking if I knew why the Israeli's painted their subs green ; I didn't know. Looking into that question, I did find this page -- and this page -- full of lots of good photos of Israeli subs, though.) I agree with this analysis from Stratfor on the difficulty the Israelis would have in using their subs in any nuclear strike role against Iran.
Chap has a fascinating post about a man whose career I also envy. Whether you like beer or wine, you'll be glad you followed the links.
I could do worse than to find a path like this guy did. Fritz Maytag is a man who has done some amazing things, and taught a lot of people. And he's made some darn good food and drink.
This guy reminds me of the co-founders of Houston's St. Arnold Brewery.

Andy Clarkson notes that Pennsylvania is getting ready to reign in eminent domain.
Very shortly in Harrisburg, the Senate will vote on S.B. 881, the Property Rights Protection Act, a thoughtful response to the tragic U.S. Supreme Court decision in Kelo v. City of New London and Pennsylvania's horrible history of using the power of government to transfer homes and small businesses to well-connected developers.
Eric Scheie finds himself in a quandary, which he examines from many angles, and humorously.
Not only that, despite my innumerable discussions of sexuality, and despite my advocacy of sexual freedom, it really isn't fair to consider Classical Values a LGBT Blog. I take issue with the category because I don't agree with categorizing people based on what they do with their genitalia. Why, it's one of the sacrosanct founding principles (choke!) of this blog! So it would be hypocritical of me to run for this, um, office. Furthermore, there are two other co-authors, and it would be even more presumptuous to assume that Justin or Dennis would want to "win" without asking them. Nor have I asked them, but neither have they asked me how the "campaign" is going (a campaign I hadn't heard about until yesterday).
He also points to an incident in Kansas in which a professor who opposes Creationism (AKA Intelligent Design) was beaten up.

Martin Lindeskog's title says it all. "Kucinich is not a true American."

Lubber's Line offers a couple of good vignettes of submarine life underway. This passage describes what it's like on the bridge at night.
It was a nearly clear moonless night and the canopy stars seemed to stretch to infinity. It's hard to describe the extent of the night sky when there's no city or street lights to obscure or diminish the view, but if you have ever been at far out at sea or in the wilderness at night you know what I mean. The only other light source outside the ship was the blue-green glow of millions of bioluminescent sea creatures disturbed by the boat's movement through the ocean. A glowing greenish frothing wake trailed off behind us in a gentle arch towards the western horizon. Occasionally the bow pressure wave would produce miniature flashes as the ships motion forward excited these dinoflagellates.
I spent the second half of my JO tour in the shipyard, and ended up getting to drive on the surface at night only once. I count that as one of my fondest memories of the Navy.

The Resident Egoist discusses a rather dubious "defense" of Objectivism and, in his comments, doubtless got a sense of why I can't stomach sites like The Raving Atheist.
Their habitual response is essentially this: "yes, we agree with you that Ayn Rand was a lunatic and an amateur philosopher at best -- but you must not let that stop you from learning true Objectivism, which -- and I insist -- she didn't come up with anyway. Here, go read this timeless book by my tolerationist comrade who will do all that is godly possible to spare from being offended by the truth, and pay no attention to those white-washing cultists who dare tell you that objective moral judgment is possible."
The Raving Atheist, who as R-E notes, has an entire website devoted to a philosophically minor issue (i.e., atheism), says in his vitriolic post that, "[T]here's no such thing as sin." This atheist disagrees. All in all, this reminds me of a similar episode I wrote about recently.

The Gaijin Biker and Myrhaf make apparently unrelated posts whose common denominator is that the most effective military strategy outcome is total victory. First, GB:
[D]efeat has a way of making people reassess the causes they were fighting for in the first place. Kyodo News spoke with 89-year-old Zenji Abe, one of the pilots who bombed U.S. ships at Pearl Harbor.
And now, Myrhaf comments on a sobering article on Afghanistan:
Where does this leave the neoconservative dream of bringing freedom to the middle east? Is it an illusion? Is nation-building a waste of time? Should American soldiers be dying to protect a nation of sharia law? Would we have been better off just bombing the Taliban to smithereens and leaving a note on the rubble that said, "If you threaten us again, we will destroy you again"?
I wish the Democrats, rather than whining about our "unwinnable war", would adopt a more hawkish strategy than the Republicans. I still think the forward strategy of freedom could work better than this, but for this to occur, we cannot permit Islam to remain part of (or a "source for") the law in those countries we conquer in the Middle East.

Willy Shake's been churning out some good stuff lately. At his own blog, Unconsidered Trifles, is this stirring WWII story about how the USS West Virginia ultimately lived to see another day after taking seven torpedoes in Pearl Harbor.
Struggling against unbearable pain, the ship's Captain refused to be evacuated. Fire broke out all over the West Virginia and secondary explosions shook the bridge. Little more could be done to save her. Captain Bennion ordered others on the bridge to get out before it was to late.

As they departed to find shelter away from the rapidly sinking battleship, Captain Bennion fought off his pain to receive reports and issue orders as long as he could think clearly. At last his horrible wounds became too much for human endurance and he collapsed...unconscious.

Then he died.
And over at Ultraquiet No More, he opens up an interesting conversation about the future of the submarine force.
Wouldn't it be better if the Sub Force justified its existence based on some other--more traditional, blue-water ASW--threat than to try to be "sexy" for the war on terror?
My answer would be an emphatic, "Yes." In fact, I would say that focusing solely on the current war is extremely shortsighted .

Alex Nunez, got Malkalanched for covering the shooting at the Miami International Airport, fresh off making the finals for the 2005 weblog awards for his category. He lists a few other familiar faces among the finalists.
Shots were fired on board an American Airlines flight that is parked at Miami International Airport, officials said. Police, SWAT teams and federal agents responded to the scene. It wasn't immediately known if anyone was hurt or who fired the shots.
Congrats, Alex! (And everyone else on his list.)

And speaking of weblog awards, Cox and Forkum urge you to "vote often" in their quest for "Best Humor/Comics Blog" in 2005.

Finally, I, Gus Van Horn, found so much rich, bloggy goodness earlier this week that I posted another roundup Sunday. I especially recommend the link on Madison and nullification.

-- CAV


Check out the following:

Vote Often


Did you listen to Harold Pinter's Nobel Prize speech? Die Welt hits the nail on the head: Pinter throws up!

In the news: Bush and Blair slated by Pinter - BBC.


Is EGO on United States Department of Defense's payroll? Is Tony Pierce fond of conspiracy theories? [Via Pajamas Media Discussion Board.]


Members of the religious right are angry about the holiday card from the White House. [Via Pajamas Media.] [Editor's comment to Jerry Falwell (a.k.a the "Dumbest person of 2001"): I look forward to recite the original version of the Pledge of Allegiance.] The Politburo Diktat is covering the "War on Christmas."

If you want to prepare the decoration of the "Yule spruce" ("julgran" in Swedish), go and read Charles Walsh's article, 'Holiday tree' belongs to Christmas.

Recommended Xmas reading: My post, X-MA$.

Monday, December 5, 2005


I think you have had a hard time to read this post. I don't know the status of Blogger. I wonder what kind of problem Blogger had this time...

Feel free to leave a comment on different weblog tools.

UPDATE 12/07/05:

Pete Hopkins har written a post (Blog*Spot is Happy Again) on the outage.

The good news is that, were this to ever happen again, we’d be able to diagnose and fix it in minutes, not hours, now that we’re aware of the potential problem. Also, we’ll be improving our outage indicator so that we’ll be able to communicate about unexpected things like this much more directly in the future.

Again, we apologize. We wanted to read blogs yesterday afternoon, too, so we totally understand any frustration you may have had. (, 12/06/05.)

Sunday, December 4, 2005


I had great conversations with friends in America, Hungary, and Sweden. I look forward to test Skype's video chat...


In the news: Iran snaps up overseas space technology - Casper Star Tribune / AP.

This is not funny news at all, but the only thing that pop up in my mind at the moment is: Dr. Julius Strangepork and "Pigs in Space!"

Mullahs in Space

Perils Before Swine


The bureaucrats at the Foreign Ministry are not happy campers at the moment...

In the news: Swedish government slammed in tsunami report - The Local.


Read the following articles:


Morris has been called a "pretty kitty" by Mind of Mog.

And some of the PJ Blogs aren't exactly big players including this one with the pretty kitty so it would appear that almost all that wanted in/were invited in were let in. (, 11/23/05.)

Here is Morris's reply: "What's up?"


[Editor's question to Sisu: Do you see the rooster on the loudspeaker?]


Despite the existing obstacles of starting a business in Sweden and the fact that I am a "poor" capitalist, I am in the process of entering a new enterprise together with a couple of business partners. With almost "zero cash, and little talent" [via Small Business Trends] in this new field, I still think we could be successful due to the combination of our knowledge, experience and competence. We have great support and resources from different external partners, e.g., the small business competition called Venture Cup and an entrepreneurial foundation translated to the "Greenhouse" in Swedish.

We are thinking of creating a special type of business enterprise called economic association or incorporated association. Do you have this kind of form of corporation in your country?

We could have an "open shop" immediately, if we get hold of the existing internet cafe that we have been looking at. We have been thinking of renaming the place to Blue Chip Café. One of the business areas is to create a meeting place for entrepreneurs, inventors and investors. The name for this activity is IdeaTank. The "water cooler" [via CotC] conversation will have a central role at our place... The atmosphere should be like a modern version of an old coffee-house. Read the article, The internet in a cup, for more information.

Saturday, December 3, 2005


I am following Punctilious's instructions for next edition of the Carnival of the Recipes.

This time the theme is Appetizers. And I MEAN it. I want all your best. tastiest, easiest, make ahead-iest appetizers. (, 12/01/05.)

Rezah at Café 3 Small Rooms in Gothenburg city has come up with this recipe.



  • 1 aubergine (dark eggplant).
  • Olive oil.
  • 2 cloves of garlic.
  • 1 yellow onion.
  • Turmeric powder.
  • 1 teaspoon of fresh basil.
  • Several tablespoons of Turkish yogurt.
  • 1 capsicum fruit.
  • Peanuts or walnuts.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • Hot sauce


  1. Peel the aubergine, cut it in pieces.
  2. Chop the garlic and onion.
  3. Fry in oil together with turmeric, until soft.
  4. Let it cool.
  5. Take a fork and mash it.
  6. Add yogurt until it has a firm consistency.
  7. Add crushed peanuts or walnuts.
  8. Add chopped chile pepper.
  9. Add salt and pepper.
  10. Add a dash of your favorite hot sauce.

Serve together with corn chips or other kind of crisps and real beer.

Friday, December 2, 2005


I have to learn more about video gaming in the near future... [Editor's note: I am looking into the opportunity to participate in a new business venture, dealing with computer games as one part of the enterprise.]

Reading material:


UPDATE 12/03/05:

In the news: Court Strikes Down III. Video Game Law - PJM News / Newstex / Associated Press. [Via InstaPundit.]


The Book of the Month is Ready for Anything by David Allen.



This photos is added to Friday Ark map. Go to the Modulator for more animal pictures.

Thursday, December 1, 2005


PJM Ads will soon appear on this blog... I have added Laurence Simon's Pajamas Media Discussion Board to the designated ad space for the time being.

By the way, what's your description of EGO's blogging style? Mister Snitch! [via InstaPundit] has listed the following styles:

  • Meme-du-jour bloggers
  • Caterers
  • Nichebloggers
  • Internet guides
  • The celebrity-blogger
  • The service blogger
  • The long-tail blogger

UPDATE 12/02/05:

Read Gerard Van der Leun's post, Midtown Manhattan Madness: Launching the Yahoo of Blogs. [Via Dean Esmay.]

[Editor's comment to the Commissar of the Politburo Diktat: I don't own a flannel shirt so I can't join Flannels Media! ;)]