Just heard Rush Limbaugh cop to being addicted to painkillers live, on-air. Checked Drudge and he had it posted w/quotes within 30 seconds.

Now that’s wickedly efficient.

Of course, since Drudge has the butt-ugliest website I’ve ever seen, I’ll have to dock him half a point for it.

Street Investigation Tied To DHS Activity?

I was reading this story on the wiretapping/bugging of Philadelphia mayor John Street’s office and happened across this paragraph:

One of the FBI raids focused on Keystone Information & Financial Services, a Mount Airy business that was awarded a contract in 2002 that netted $60,600 from the city for collection of taxes.

The FBI also searched the Cheltenham home of an executive of the business, Imam Shamsud-din Ali, according to a law enforcement official.

(emphasis mine).

Post-Sept. 11, whenever I see an Arabic-sounding name mentioned in connection with any sort of financing schemes, my terrorism alarm goes off, so I decided to investigate a little further.

From this article, it would appear that Imam Ali is a Black Muslim and leader of the Philadelphia Masjid. Newsmax has a story quoting Imam Ali thusly:

Crawley’s coalition included Charles Bowser who Fulford described as a local Philadelphia politician and Imam Shamsud-Din Ali, “who, a month after the September 11th attacks, was leading a panel discussion called ‘Shattering the Peace: Understanding the Roots of the Sept. 11 Attacks.’ He’s a spokesman for a Black Muslim organization called the Majlis Ash-Shura [Council of Wise Men], which has objected to the use of the term ‘Muslim’ to describe the Muslim terrorists of 9/11.”

(Fulford’s original story is available here.)

It appears as if the Imam is also on the board of trustees of the Philadelphia prison system. He was a part of Street’s transition team (under “Quality of Life”) It looks like he campaigned heavily for Street as well.

Now, none of this adds up to a whole heck of a lot, but it does set off the alarm bells. Could one of Street’s cronies be involved in terrorist-funding operations? I’m going to keep my eyes and ears open for more info on this as it surfaces. We should know more as the extent of the FBI’s investigation becomes known.

Oh Waiter, Three SitComs, Hold The Comedy, Please

How, oh how can an entire network jump the shark? If last night’s “Must” See TV (combined with lackluster debuts of Law and Order and The West Wing) serve(s) as any indication, NBC is firmly astride Fonzie’s bike, glancing triumphantly downward towards Jaws’ long-lost cousin.

How has the network of Seinfeld fame been reduced to “dreadlock jokes” and random hookups (Joey & Rachel, Ross & the other Prof., and, apparently, Jack and Will)? The Friends, Law & Order and West Wing premiers could have been enough excrement for an entire season, but what does NBC do? Slaughter Coupling. Not only is it nowhere near as funny as its BBC incarnation, it might possibly even be worse than Whoopi.

I’m sure the American cast is comprised of wonderful, talented souls who earnestly want to do justice to the source material. However, I was left with an inpression akin to seeing a high school production of Hamlet: you know they’re trying, but you also know you’ve seen it done better before and it sounded a whole lot better with English accents.

Why, NBC, why!?! Mess up your own shows, run them into the ground, do what you wish, but leave our Britcoms alone! What’s next, Keeping Up Appearances, featuring a well-intentioned yet misguided Minnesotan woman? So Mario Cantone? Law and Order: John Rebus?

The mind reels.

Real Heroes

It seems there are some real heroes left in this world. 9/11 showed the heroism of NYC firefighters, EMS workers, policemen and even regular citizens.

This story also gives me the same warm feeling, the same “Hooray for humanity!” vibe that I’ve felt every time someone has related a post-9/11 Good Samaritan story.

My favorite quote of the story?

The three young men said they didn’t think twice about running onto the freeway to help Puz.

“If that was your father, wouldn’t you want someone to help?” Travis said.

It almost brings a tear to my eye. God bless those three young men.

No Words Strong Enough

I thought I was over this. I thought that I had moved on, that I had made peace with 9/11. I can’t believe how wrong I was.

I turned on Fox & Friends this morning and witnessed firefighters’ families talking about their lost mothers and fathers and the tears just overcame me. I fought them, but it was too much for me.

I don’t know if I’ll make it through the day without bursting into tears again.

God, be with the families of the brave rescue workers who gave their lives to save others. Bless our servicemen and women as they fight for our very survival a half a world away. Remind us of what it means to be a servant like that: selfless, brave and willing to give all.

I can’t keep writing. The tears won’t stop.