Saturday, December 16, 2006


Hello, Good-Bayh

John Edwards says "Yes" to another White House run.

Evan Bayh says "No" to any immediate WH run.

For those keeping track, that's an 0 for 2 on the so-called Democratic moderates after Mark Warner dropped out a few weeks ago.

That means, as far as Democrats go, Hillary Rodham Clinton is now defining the center-right position.

UPDATE: Of course, John Edwards is running in 2008. Typo has been corrected.

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If I Did It...

...this is how I would fire a publicity hound...

Apparently, the discovery of her plagiarism on the O.J. idea was the final straw:

Damn, if Simpson didn't end another life!

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Friday, December 15, 2006


Open Thread

Have fun, kids!!

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Ahmet Ertegun, R.I.P.

One of the great men of contemporary American music has passed away.

He was a critical force in the discovery and development of Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and many others R&B titans and promoted British rock royalty such as the Stones, Zeppelin and more.

He was also a graduate of my alma mater, St. John's College -- an institution which he continued to support over the years.


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Rating the Rookie Quarterbacks

Denver Broncos rookie quarterback Jay Cutler has only played two games so far this year, but the results have been pretty good for a first year NFL quarterback, especially considering they came against two strong defenses in Seattle and San Diego.

So how do Cutler's first two games (27-51, 331 yards, 4 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions) stack up against the first two games of the other three rookie quarterbacks starting this season? Better than Vince Young (24-50, 218 yards, 1 touchdown, and 3 interceptions), but worse than Matt Leinart (46-77, 485 yards, 4 touchdowns, and 1 interception) or Bruce Gradkowski (45-75, 409 yards, 4 touchdowns, and 1 interception).

However, the real flaw with Cutler has been fumbles. In two games, he has fumbled five times, only recovering one of them. Of the other rookies, Vince Young came closest with two fumbles in his first two games (recovering neither of them).

Speaking of Young, while he might make the highlight films more often, it has actually been Matt Leinart who has been the most productive of the rookie quarterbacks. With 56.2% of passes completed, 2171 passing yards, 10 touchdowns, 10 interceptions, 2 lost fumbles, and a 73.9 passer rating, Leinart is the not-so-shining star of this group.

But rookie quarterbacks, take some consolation in Peyton Manning's rookie numbers: 56.7% completed, 3739 passing yards, 26 touchdowns, 28 interceptions, 3 fumbles lost, and a 71.2 passer rating.

But if you REALLY want to feel better, take a look at Hall of Famer, 4-time Super Bowl Champion and 2-time Super Bowl MVP Terry Bradshaw's rookie numbers: 38.1% completed, 1410 passing yards, 6 touchdowns, 24 interceptions, 3 fumbles lost, and a 30.4 passer rating.

What does all this prove? That rookie quarterback statistics are overrated.

(Hat tip to and

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Thursday, December 14, 2006


Weekend Distractions

Friday and Saturday night, your humble (sort-of) blogger can be found improvising in the Flatiron/Chelsea area of New York City.

If you're in the neighborhood, drop on by!

improv shows

Short form improvised scenes and songs using your suggestions.

Friday, December 15th
Saturday, December 16th
8 pm

(general seating)
@ Stonestreet Studios
48 West 21st Street, 8th Floor

Directed by Ralph Buckley

home / shows / workshops / group / team / calendar / contact
©2006 The Yes Show

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N***a, Pretty Please

A recent thread in the Comments section ended up bringing up all the interesting words Archie Bunker tossed around. Given the Michael Richards to-do of a few weeks ago -- and Rosie O'Donnell's muffed joke about the Chinese, I thought it would be a good idea to dive into the subject further.

Anyway, here's what seems to be a great resource for racial and ethnic slurs of all types. Not sure I would call this exhaustive, but it's a good place to start!

Everyone get their fighting words out of the way!

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Read Me, Hear Me, Feel Me...

Well, hear me anyway: Princeton's Melissa Harris Lacewell and yours truly assess the sorry state of the 109th Congress with Farai Chideya on NPR's "News & Notes."

I've been part of this show's roundtable section for more than a year now, but this was only the second time they've asked me to do an extended commentary conversation. I'll try to remember to put up the roundtable segments when I do them on Mondays.

UPDATE: Here's this past Monday's show, where we chat about Barack Obama, Bill Jefferson and affordable housing.

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Quick Hits...

1) Ban is in. The United Nations has a new Secretary-General. Delay in blaming U.S. for various world conditions blamed on not yet receiving notes from predecessor Kofi Annan's general secretary.

2) FHM is out. The American edition of the UK laddie magazine folds. Silly wankers!

3) Miss USA is "on the ledge." May end up being "fired" -- though boss Trump denies the story.

4) Princess Diana death ruled an accident. But, of course,
they'd want you to think that.

5) More troops -- less filling? And, can Bush be accused of fiddling while Baghdad burns?

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006


Be Careful What You Wish For...

Post-mortems on the last GOP loss of 2006:

Cohen also makes one other point. This is now the second seat in TX this cycle that has switched hands from the GOP to the Dems as a result of Tom DeLay's re-redistricting efforts. The other seat, of course, was DeLay's. So the net result for the GOP based on DeLay's re-redistricting was all of 2 seats. Was that really worth all the hassle and the subpoenas and courtroom dramas? Many a Republican is probably wondering that same thing tonight, in particular, soon-to-be-ex-Rep. Henry Bonilla.

Update: National Journal's Charles Mahtesian, who is the editor of the Almanac of American Politics, observes: "Take a look at these remarkable numbers in Maverick County. Bonilla won it with 59% in 2004, even as Kerry was carrying the county; Bonilla lost it 86-14% tonight. Maverick County is a border county and home to Eagle Pass, where the border fence issue was huge. Bonilla's vote in favor of a fence made an enormous difference here.

Talk about a mayor who knows his town. In a September newspaper story about the fence issue, here's a quote by Eagle Pass Mayor Chad Foster, 'It's kind of hard to support someone who wants to build a fence,' said Foster, who's also president of the Texas Border Coalition, a group of city and county officials. 'I'd say 95 percent of Maverick County agrees with me.' Turns out the guy was off by 9 points."

So, the DeLay redistricting fiasco claimed another victim AND the GOP's focus on building a fence helped knock off a member who strongly supported it.

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Pick the NFL Winners - Week 15

Sorry about last week folks. It was a busy one.

But back by popular request (ok, one person asked about it), we are picking up with our usual "pick the NFL winners". Only your pride is at stake, since I will announce the winners and losers next week. We will NOT be picking the Thursday night games, in order to give people plenty of time to get their picks done.

Without further ado, my picks in red:

Dallas at Atlanta: Even though Atlanta's defense is getting healthy, I cannot see them putting a can of whoopass on Dallas like New Orleans did.

Cleveland at Baltimore: In real life, what do ravens do to brownies?

Detroit at Green Bay: Expect a lot of frozen paws on the Lambeau tundra.

Houston at New England: They say everything is bigger in Texas. But when you take them to New England, they get REALLY small.

Jacksonville at Tennessee: Both of these teams are coming off huge wins. After losing to Houston twice this year, I just don't see the Jags taking the Titans lightly, even though the Jags already beat them once.

Miami at Buffalo: Another tough game. Take the healthier Bills team at home.

N.Y. Jets at Minnesota: Intriguing matchup of two teams that started strong but have recently cooled off. While the Vikes still have the best run defense in the NFL, the Jets strength is passing. The matchups work for the Jets.

Pittsburgh at Carolina: If Delhomme plays, the Cats win.

Tampa Bay at Chicago: Wouldn't it be cool if the Bucs won this game? Then Gruden woke up...

Washington at New Orleans: The Skins don't have a prayer in this one.

Denver at Arizona: Welcome to the Jay Cutler "coming out" party.

Philadelphia at N.Y. Giants: I have a hunch that Jeff Garcia has the Giants defense for lunch.

St. Louis at Oakland: The Battle of (previously) Los Angeles teams. If the Raiders are going to beat anyone, it will be the Rams. Assuming the Raiders don't mail it in...

Kansas City at San Diego: Payback for the Bolts.

Cincinnati at Indianapolis: Carson Palmer has been studying Peyton Manning for a few years. I bet Palmer has had this game circled since the schedule came out.

UPDATE: There are THREE winners this week:

EdMcGon - 10
David Stefanini - 10
J. Mark English - 10


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Tuesday, December 12, 2006


Old Jokes...

...can still be the best. Rep. Silvestre Reyes doesn't know his Shi-ite from Shinola -- or his Aspen from a hole in the ground.

Ladies and gentlemen -- your Democratic Intelligence Committee Chair.

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Ranking the NFL - Week 14

RAVENS: The best team in the NFL. San Diego and Chicago may have better records, but they also have flaws not present with Baltimore. Chicago cannot win a Super Bowl with Rex Grossman. San Diego has already lost to Baltimore.

CHARGERS: Add in one more factor for the Chargers: No Schottenheimer-coached team has ever been to a Super Bowl. Although I will add this is the best team Schottenheimer has EVER had.

BEARS: Time to give "Da Bears" some love. Grossman was not bad against the Rams. If he can play that way every week, they have a great shot at making it to the Super Bowl, although I still cannot see them beating either the Ravens or Chargers.

SAINTS: It is easy to tell who the Media wants representing the NFC in the Super Bowl. While I can appreciate the urge to see New Orleans doing well, I like this team for all the offensive weapons they have. Adding Reggie Bush to this team was a sin.

COWBOYS: The Saints exposed Tony Romo, just when the Media was ready to anoint him the next "Peyton Manning". Although I do have to wonder if Terrell Owens' birthday party last week was a distraction.

BENGALS: Another week, another DWI (Deltha O'Neal). At this rate, we may have to call Marvin Lewis "Scarface".

PATRIOTS: Shutout by Miami? At least it should put a temporary halt to the "watch out for New England in the playoffs" chorus.

COLTS: Their run defense is ready for the glue factory.

BRONCOS: Look on the bright side, Jay Cutler: You get Arizona this week. Truth be told, Denver did not look that bad against San Diego. They just got steamrolled by the "LT for MVP" train.

CHIEFS: How do you evaluate a team that gets rolled like a drunken bum by the best team in the NFL (Baltimore)? Now they get to play the second best team in the NFL (San Diego). The bad news is they beat San Diego earlier this year. Remember the old saying about paybacks...

PANTHERS: I'll give the Panthers a pass this week. Having to start Chris Weinke is a valid excuse for losing.

SEAHAWKS: How does a team beat Denver one week, then lose to Arizona the following week? Anyone who thinks the Seahawks are going back to the Super Bowl this year better wake up and smell the birds burning.

TITANS: When asked what he was thinking when he ran for a 39-yard touchdown to beat the Texans in overtime, Vince Young said, "...I felt like my mom was chasing me with a belt."

GIANTS: The G-men are getting healthy at the right time. Or is it a case of too little, too late? They might beat the Eagles this week, but I cannot see them beating the Saints in two weeks.

JAGUARS: Don't ignore the Jaguars running game. Against the Colts, Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew looked like Barry Sanders and Walter Payton.

DOLPHINS: The Dolphins still have issues, but it is clear their defense knows Tom Brady all too well. Definitely better than Brady would like.

STEELERS: Just when you think you will never hear Frenchy Fuqua's name outside of an old NFL Films movie, Willie Parker goes and breaks Fuqua's team rushing record (set in 1970). With all the great running backs the Steelers have had over the years, it is amazing this record has lasted as long as it has.

BROWNS: Is anyone giving odds on the Browns drafting a quarterback next year? The only way they don't draft a quarterback is if they either trade for one or sign a free agent.

BILLS: Note to Anonymous, who suggested I had the Bills and the Jets rated too low: You were right on one count.

JETS: I cannot believe I had to defend ranking this team below Cleveland last week.

FALCONS: Unfortunately for the Falcons, they get Dallas on Saturday night. And Terrell Owens' birthday was LAST week.

BUCCANEERS: Next stop on "The Jon Gruden Farewell Tour": Chicago.

EAGLES: Donovan who?

REDSKINS: I love the rumors about the Redskins trading Clinton Portis after this season. The Iraq Study Group's recommendations on Israel have a better chance of happening.

VIKINGS: I see the Vikings won their "homecoming game". It was nice of the Lions to let them play it in Detroit.

RAMS: If you want to know what is wrong with the Rams, it is their defense, which gives up a league leading 5.8 yards per play.

CARDINALS: Arizona is quietly becoming respectable. They have won three of their last four, with (GASP!) the Seahawks as their latest victims. If they beat Denver this weekend...

PACKERS: Brett Favre, don't think beating up on the 49ers means you can play another 10 years. Unfortunately, with games against Detroit and Minnesota coming up, you might sincerely think so before the end of the season.

49ERS: Just when you think Frisco is improving, they lose to Green Bay. They made Brett Favre look 10 years younger.

TEXANS: You have to feel sorry for the Texans. Previously, they were getting beat over the head with "how can you pick Mario Williams before Reggie Bush?". Now they get "how can you pick Mario Williams before Vince Young?". With their game against New England this week, will we hear "how can you pick Mario Williams before Laurence Maroney?"

RAIDERS: Moss? Moss? Has anyone seen Randy "Ferris Buehler" Moss?

LIONS: I have heard that Matt Millen's job future is tied to Rod Marinelli's success. Unfortunately for Marinelli, his job future is tied to the success of Millen's draft picks.


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Monday, December 11, 2006


Culture of Corruption, Take Two

Well, at least the public had the good sense to send Republican crooks, rogues and wife-beaters packing during the election.

No such luck with their Democratic counterparts! Yes, indeed, we still have William "Cold Cash" Jefferson to kick around:

Voters gave the Louisiana Democrat an emphatic reelection victory over state Rep. Karen Carter, even though his campaign had been weighted with revelations that federal authorities had videotaped him taking $100,000 in alleged bribe money, and that $90,000 of it had been found inside a freezer in his apartment in the District. The investigation led House colleagues to dump him from a key committee, donors abandoned him and the state Democratic Party switched its allegiance to his opponent.

But before cheering supporters at a hotel room on election night, Jefferson called his win "a great moment" and said, "I thank almighty God for making it possible."

This should give Republicans some comfort as Nancy Pelosi's post-election period continues with defeats of preferred (ethically-challenged) Members for key leadership posts -- and the return of a member under FBI investigation (well, two members actually, including West Virginia's Alan Mollohan.

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