The secret is out: Prince Harry has been serving on the front line with his British army unit in one of Afghanistan's most lawless and barren provinces. ...
Harry has been in Helmand Province, where most of the 7,800 British soldiers in Afghanistan are based. It has seen some of the country's fiercest combat in recent years, with NATO-led forces fighting the Taliban and al-Qaida militants.
The close-quarter combat has been described as the most challenging British troops have faced since the Korean War, with their positions sometimes just a few yards from those held by insurgents. Since the U.S.-led invasion ousted Afghanistan's Taliban regime in late 2001, 89 British soldiers have been killed.
Harry's work in Afghanistan has involved calling in airstrikes on Taliban positions as well as going out on foot patrols. He spent part of his deployment at an operating base just 500 yards from Taliban positions, the military said.
Since Harry's arrival, his battle group has been responsible for around 30 enemy deaths, a Ministry of Defense official said, speaking on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to release the information.
More than one in 100 adult Americans is in jail or prison, an all-time high that is costing state governments nearly $50 billion a year, in addition to more than $5 billion spent by the federal government, according to a report released today.
With more than 2.3 million people behind bars at the start of 2008, the United States leads the world in both the number and the percentage of residents it incarcerates, leaving even far more populous China a distant second, noted the report by the nonpartisan Pew Center on the States.
I half-heartedly voted for Matt Gonzalez when he ran for mayor, but if he runs with Ralph I'm done with him:
Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader selected Matt Gonzalez, a former member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, to be his running mate.
Nader, who launched his fourth White House bid last weekend, made the announcement Thursday at a news conference. The Texas-born Gonzalez ran for mayor of San Francisco as a Green Party candidate in 2003 but lost to Gavin Newsom.
"I don't think Obama will be any more negative for the United States than Hillary or John McCain," explains Duke. "In fact," he added, "we probably have less preference for a European like a John McCain or a Hillary who has betrayed our interests, our heritage, our rights."
If Duke can't hate on Obama, I think BHO's chances are pretty good.
Formerly in an anti-terrorist unit of the Croatian police (hence, the "CroCop"), Mirko Filipović was a decent kickboxer who transitioned into mixed martial arts. His kickboxing skills made him the most feared striker in the Pride fighting organization. He has a sprawl and brawl style similar to that of Igor Vovchanchyn. He's ended many of his fights with a devastating left kick to the head. It's his favorite strike; everyone knows it's coming, and yet he still manages to catch his opponents with it.
After moving to the UFC, CroCop has achieved mixed results, 1 - 2, losing his last two matches. Now that he's finished his term as a member of Croatian parliament (WTF?!), hopefully Filipović can rededicate himself to training and turn things around.
[T]he truth is, Dennis Kucinich has the best voting record in Congress of anyone from a mostly white, ethnic district. No one else who shares most of Kucinich's positions--even those who are much less outspoken than he is--also has a district like his. He's not from Berkeley or Madison. He doesn't have a huge, liberal base constituency. Dennis Kucinich is consistently braver than his district would suggest he should be; and perhaps no other progressive is as brave compared to the people they represent. If you disagree, I offer impeachment as an example. Or gay marriage. Or animal rights. Or the abolition of nuclear weapons. Or a ban on weapons in space. Or his early opposition to pre-emptive war.
Maybe those brave votes are a big part of the reason that Kucinich currently has four opponents for his House seat, including at least one who's being massively funded by outside corporate interests. Maybe his tough race is not all due to his absences, but to his outspokenness. Maybe it's not his ears but his votes. Maybe it's not his size that irritates the big corporate boys but his willingness to act on his beliefs.
Maybe the special interest money that's pouring into Cleveland these days for his opponents is not really because they're dissatisfied with his constituent service but because they don't like his commitment to ending the war economy; because they're irritated by his feistiness on behalf of canceling NAFTA, for fair trade, for living wages, for card-check union organizing; or because they hate his years of leadership on behalf of getting the insurance and drug companies out of people's healthcare.
Here's a fun experiment. Go to ActBlueright now, pick out any House candidate randomly, and see if their proposed issue positions outdo Kucinich's existing votes. And then think about the fact that progressive groups will in the coming months spend hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the blogosphere will correctly exalt and extol many of these challengers, and activists will offer up thousands of words and hundreds of hours and dozens of dollars each, all to elect people who do not now--and likely never will--measure up to Kucinich's existing track record.
Then consider treating him with a bit more respect.
The review in Maxim's March issue gives the Crowes' ''Warpaint'' a rating of two-and-a-half stars out of five. The band posted an exasperated statement on their Web site last week, saying the Maxim writer hadn't heard the entire album because advance copies weren't available. The Crowes' manager, Pete Angelus, said the magazine explained that its review was an ''educated guess.''
Barack Obama has won the Democrats Abroad primary for his 11th straight victory, the group announced Thursday. An organization representing Democrats who are U.S. citizens living outside the U.S., Democrats Abroad has state-level recognition from the Democratic National Committee, which has granted the group a total of 11 delegates -- including four superdelegates -- to the Democratic convention.
In final results, Obama won the popular vote by a large margin over rival Hillary Clinton. Obama garnered 65.6 percent of the vote, while Clinton took 32.7 percent. But the delegate count was much closer: Obama picks up 2.5 delegates, Clinton two; 2.5 more delegates will be allocated at the group's convention in April.
Mr. McCain’s confidence in his ability to distinguish personal friendships from compromising connections was at the center of questions advisers raised about Ms. Iseman.
The lobbyist, a partner at the firm Alcalde & Fay, represented telecommunications companies for whom Mr. McCain’s commerce committee was pivotal. Her clients contributed tens of thousands of dollars to his campaigns.
Mr. Black said Mr. McCain and Ms. Iseman were friends and nothing more. But in 1999 she began showing up so frequently in his offices and at campaign events that staff members took notice. One recalled asking, “Why is she always around?”
That February, Mr. McCain and Ms. Iseman attended a small fund-raising dinner with several clients at the Miami-area home of a cruise-line executive and then flew back to Washington along with a campaign aide on the corporate jet of one of her clients, Paxson Communications. By then, according to two former McCain associates, some of the senator’s advisers had grown so concerned that the relationship had become romantic that they took steps to intervene.
A former campaign adviser described being instructed to keep Ms. Iseman away from the senator at public events, while a Senate aide recalled plans to limit Ms. Iseman’s access to his offices.
In interviews, the two former associates said they joined in a series of confrontations with Mr. McCain, warning him that he was risking his campaign and career. Both said Mr. McCain acknowledged behaving inappropriately and pledged to keep his distance from Ms. Iseman. The two associates, who said they had become disillusioned with the senator, spoke independently of each other and provided details that were corroborated by others.
Separately, a top McCain aide met with Ms. Iseman at Union Station in Washington to ask her to stay away from the senator. John Weaver, a former top strategist and now an informal campaign adviser, said in an e-mail message that he arranged the meeting after “a discussion among the campaign leadership” about her.
“Our political messaging during that time period centered around taking on the special interests and placing the nation’s interests before either personal or special interest,” Mr. Weaver continued. “Ms. Iseman’s involvement in the campaign, it was felt by us, could undermine that effort.”
Mr. Weaver added that the brief conversation was only about “her conduct and what she allegedly had told people, which made its way back to us.” He declined to elaborate.
Apparently, Obama was born to destroy our nation. Literally, his birth was a Communist plot. Also, political correctness was created to provide cover for his mixed race heritage and obscure his origins as a product of Communist eugenics.
Don't make the mistake of thinking that this is racism. That would be a cheap accusation:
Before readers level cheap accusations of racism — let's recall that the very question of interracial marriage only became a big issue later in the 1960s. The notion of a large group of mixed race Americans became an issue during and after the Vietnam War. Even the civil-rights movement kept this culturally explosive matter at arm's distance.
Somehow, this refutes cheap accusations of racism. Missing is the non sequitur that refutes accusations of being bugfuck crazy.
The Clinton campaign failed to recognize the allure of Obama's "new kind of politics." Universally, the American people voiced cynicism about Washington politics and the current state of affairs. Among independents from all across the spectrum, the one thing they all share is enough frustration with the party system to decline to state an allegiance. For Obama to be successful in winning the nomination on a "new kind of politics," he would have to paint Clinton as a representation of the politics of old. She should have anticipated this, and been cognizant not to showcase herself as the embodiment of a distasteful political system. And yet, over and over again, she made tactical decisions that solidified his narrative.
She chose to accept lobbyist money at a time when her victory was being cast as so assured, that it remained unclear why she needed it. In South Carolina, she and her husband injected race into the campaign. What was so distasteful was not that the Clintons were racist. On the contrary, it was that they weren't racist, but were perfectly willing to meddle with race if there was a chance it would translate into political currency. So started the Obama message that Hillary "will do anything" to win. And it resonated.
Former UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre is ranked first in the world in his weight class on several lists, if you put any creedence in such things.
St. Pierre recently dismantled 9-time former champion Matt Hughes in their third meeting. Hughes had previously dominated the welterweight division with his wrestling ability and freakish strength, although he also has excellent grappling skills. A phenomenal wrestler, Hughes had basically taken down his prior opponents at will. St. Pierre stopped his takedown attempts, took Hughes down himself, and totally dominated the action on the ground, winning by armbar in the second round.
During training, St. Pierre spends a couple days a week striking with strikers, wrestling with wrestlers, and grappling with grapplers. As a result, his skills have gone through the roof when compared to other mma fighters, who tend to be generalists and less focused when it comes to training in specific disciplines.
By all accounts, he is also an extremely nice guy.
This fight is from the middle of his career, coming off his first loss. He really cranks the kimura that ends the match. It looks ridiculously painful.
Ethan banned from answering this one. Who are the three people in this photo? Who is the fourth?
HINT #1: They are standing on Lamar Bridge. HINT #2: The closest dude is Joe D. HINT #3: The guy facing us is Mystery. HINT #4: Between Mystery and Joe D stands Brady. HINT #5: They were trying to pick up women on a bridge. HINT #6: No one was successful and Mystery is sad. HINT #7: Joe D spent most of the time sitting on a bench sweating. HINT #8: Brady tried to pick up two middle aged women.
Has your mother shown any remorse for the fact that her vote cost Iraqis a million of their lives?” a student asked Chelsea Clinton on Monday at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Ms. Clinton replied: “She cast a vote based on the best available evidence. Perhaps you had clairvoyance then, and that’s extraordinary."
You have to wonder why they're keeping such a warm and engaging person away from the media. She could have been sarcastic, flippant, condescending, impatient and dismissive in response to a challenge from an obnoxious peasant. Instead this warm, open and humble young lady chose to suggest that anyone capable of out-thinking her mother in 2002 was gifted with psychic powers and very special indeed. Some people are just givers.
"The surge — if I may use that word — occurred in direct correlation to the way that campaign had been ratcheted up," said Rep. Jim Clyburn, D-S.C., the House Majority Whip who has not endorsed a candidate. "Those of us who live in the South especially, we know the code words when we hear them and we understand the tone. People felt some of that was going on and they reacted to it in a very bitter way."
I think that all people of color can relate to this on a personal level. We all have a white friend who slipped up and said something fucked up and racist, usually unintentionally, not realizing that it was racist. The more cynical among us expect all of our white friends to do it, sooner or later.
When it happens, you might say something, or you might not. You might forgive them, or not. You might even stay friends. But you'll never forget it. No matter what they do or say in the future, you remember that on some level, they know that they're white and you're not, and that they're well aware of all the privilege that goes with that fact.
On a recent episode of The Colbert Report, Debra Dickerson said that she never forgave Clinton for his Sister Souljah moment. The newest generation of politically active people of color will likely never forgive him or Hillary for their recent shameful tactics. However they chose to vote, people of color will have to think long and hard before casting a ballot for their white friend.
Warning signs that a child may be trying the practice include bloodshot eyes, marks on the neck, severe headaches, the presence of ropes, scarves or belts tied to bedroom furniture or doorknobs or found knotted on the floor, or the unexplained presence of dog leashes or choke collars.
I had a roommate in college who had all of the symptoms.
The probable opponent there is now Barack Obama. Hillary Clinton is not out yet, but barring a stunning turnaround in the March 4th primaries in Texas and Ohio, she will continue to fade. Assuming this continues, it is worth comparing McCain and Obama as they performed in the handful of states they have both won so far. It is a short list of eight, and though we cannot assess the candidates in a direct contest — yet — we can compare the turnout for each. Suffice it to say that Barack Obama’s vote totals blow McCain’s out of the water. The states, and the percentage advantage for Obama, follow:
Connecticut: Obama had 226% of McCain’s total.
Delaware: Obama had 226% of McCain’s total.
Illinois: Obama had 307% of McCain’s total.
Maryland: Obama had 295% of McCain’s total.
Missouri: Obama had 208% of McCain’s total.
South Carolina: Obama had 200% of McCain’s total.
Washington: Obama had 623% of McCain’s total.
Virginia: Obama had 255% of McCain’s total.
This comparison is of limited utility, of course: the lopsided totals in places like Connecticut and Illinois may simply reflect the anemic Republican apparatus in each. But how to explain the comparative blowouts in Missouri, South Carolina, and Virginia? The Democrats aren’t just winning the turnout battle: they’re dominating it by orders of magnitude, even in Republican strongholds. Between the strange loss of the pro-war vote, and the massive Democratic turnout advantage to date, John McCain cannot afford to rest on his laurels, nor cruise to his inevitable nomination, if he wants to win in nine months.
I often find myself falling into the habit of thinking that when Dems capitulate to Bush it is because they are pussies. But the truth of the matter may be that the bad Dems* are actually believers in Bush's policies. As Greenwald puts it:
But a large number of elected Democrats vote in favor of the radical Bush agenda for a very simple reason: they believe in it. Despite the glorious "D" after their name, their views are materially indistinguishable from the defining ones of the Bush faction on the key issues. A huge portion of Congressional Democrats are members of the corrupt, bipartisan Beltway political establishment first, and everything only follows that, and they thus embrace and support the values of that establishment.
It is a lie that Congress must pass a bill to end the occupation of Iraq. The occupation can be ended with an announcement by Congressional leaders that there will be no more funding. Any proposal to fund it can be blocked by 41 senators. Bush has plenty of money for withdrawal and could be given more for that exclusive purpose. When your television tells you the Democrats need 60 or 67 senators to end the occupation, your television is lying to you.
*today's bad Dems: "The Dodd/Feingold amendment to remove telecom immunity from the bill just failed by a whopping vote of 31-67 -- 20 votes shy of the 50 needed for a passage. A total of 18 Democrats joined all Republicans in voting for immunity: Bayh, Inouye, Johnson, Landrieu, McCaskill, Ben Nelson, Bill Nelson, Stabenow, Feinstein, Kohl, Pryor, Rockefeller, Salazar, Carper, Mikulski, Conrad, Webb, and Lincoln. Obama voted against immunity [Ed. -- good for him], and Hillary Clinton was the only Senator not voting." (emphasis added)
I remember the first time I saw Randy Couture, in his 1997 UFC debut against Tony Halme. You could instantly tell that he was an intelligent and technical fighter. He did a transition into back mount that was at once quick and smooth yet methodical. Instead of scrambling onto Halme's back and giving him a chance to escape or improve his position, Couture secured his position at every step, getting Halme's back and quickly ending the fight via rear naked choke. You can see the transition at the 40 second mark of this video.
The video at the top of the post is from the fight in which Couture defeated Tito Ortiz to claim the Light Heavyweight championship. Going into this fight, Tito had totally dominated every title challenger the organization had put against him. The Vegas odds had Tito as the heavy favorite. Despite this, a friend and I knew with absolute certainty that Couture would win the fight. Randy ended up completely dominating five rounds and winning a unanimous decision. It was completely one-sided, and he made it look easy. I still kick myself for not putting any money on this fight.
On the Republican side, the conservatives, distraught at the likelihood of McCain being the nominee, are prophesying disaster in the November vote. An internal assessment circulating though the Conservative Political Action Committee meeting in Washington DC last week predicted "an epic landslide" by the Democratic ticket similar to Lyndon Johnson's obliteration of Goldwater in 1964. The memo attributed this likely outcome to recession, the war in Iraq and a terrible candidate. Republican senator Thad Cochrane has openly said he trembles at the thought of an unstable McCain in the Oval Office with his finger on the nuclear trigger. Whoever the Democratic nominee is, McCain should be easy meat, with scores of victims of his savage onslaughts ready to testify to his frenzied personal onslaughts and profanity-laden tirades. By insisting on using the word "gooks" about the Vietnamese, he's already well on the way to losing the Asian-American vote. To an electorate opposed to the war in Iraq by some 70 per cent, he enthusiastically prophesies a century of war.
Quietly, while Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have been inspiring Democrats everywhere with their rolling bitchfest, congressional superduo Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi have completed one of the most awesome political collapses since Neville Chamberlain. At long last, the Democratic leaders of Congress have publicly surrendered on the Iraq War, just one year after being swept into power with a firm mandate to end it.
Solidifying his reputation as one of the biggest pussies in U.S. political history, Reid explained his decision to refocus his party's energies on topics other than ending the war by saying he just couldn't fit Iraq into his busy schedule. "We have the presidential election," Reid said recently. "Our time is really squeezed."
There was much public shedding of tears among the Democratic leadership, as Reid, Pelosi and other congressional heavyweights expressed deep sadness that their valiant charge up the hill of change had been thwarted by circumstances beyond their control — that, as much as they would love to continue trying to end the catastrophic Iraq deal, they would now have to wait until, oh, 2009 to try again. "We'll have a new president," said Pelosi. "And I do think at that time we'll take a fresh look at it."
Pelosi seemed especially broken up about having to surrender on Iraq, sounding like an NFL coach in a postgame presser, trying with a straight face to explain why he punted on first-and-goal. "We just didn't have any plays we liked down there," said the coach of the 0-15 Dems. "Sometimes you just have to play the field-position game...."
How much of this bullshit are we going to take? How long are we supposed to give the Reids and Pelosis and Hillarys of the world credit for wanting, deep down in their moldy hearts, to do the right thing?
In a surprise twist after a chaotic Super Tuesday, Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) passed Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) in network tallies of the number of delegates the candidates racked up last night.
The Obama camp now projects topping Clinton by 13 delegates, 847 to 834.
NBC News, which is projecting delegates based on the Democratic Party's complex formula, figures Obama will wind up with 840 to 849 delegates, versus 829 to 838 for Clinton.
Clinton was portrayed in many news accounts as the night’s big winner, but Obama’s campaign says he wound up with a higher total where it really counts — the delegates who will choose the party’s nominee at this summer’s Democratic convention.
With the delegate count still under way, NBC News said Obama appears to have won around 840 delegates in yesterday’s contests, while Clinton earned about 830 — “give or take a few,” Tim Russert, the network’s Washington bureau chief, said on the “Today” show.
The running totals for the two, which includes previous contests and the party officials known as “superdelegates,” are only about 70 delegates apart, Russert said.
Barack Obama seems well aware of this scenario, and explained his perspective at a press conference in Chicago this morning.
Obama also made some interesting comments about his route to the nomination, saying that he’ll amass a higher total of pledged delegates as a way of putting pressure on committed super-delegates to honor the Democratic process, forgo back-room politics, and back the candidate with the most public support.
"If this contest comes down to super-delegates, I think we’re going to be able to say that we have more pledged delegates — meaning that the Democratic voters have spoken," Obama said. "And I think that those SD’s who are elected officials, party insiders, would have to think long and hard about how they approach the nomination when the people they claim to represent have said, 'Obama's our guy.'"
If Clinton and Obama go to the convention tied (or practically tied) among pledged delegates, this is a moot point. Superdelegates can break tie. But the possibility for real ugliness emerges if Democratic voters have spoken, and Democratic insiders silence them by picking the candidate who came in second.
As first floated by The Page, I can confirm that, according to advisers to the campaign, Sen. Hillary Clinton is weighing a self-loan in order to finance a competitive race against Barack Obama over the next few weeks.
Clinton raised less than $20M in January and has spent most of its store of money on ads leading up to Tuesday's multi-state primary.
Campaign advisers would not say how much money she has left. Officials did not respond to e-mails seek comment.
Late last month Senator Clinton loaned her campaign $5 million.The loan illustrates Sen. Clinton’s commitment to this effort and to ensuring that our campaign has the resources it needs to compete and win across this nation. We have had one of our best fundraising efforts ever on the web today and our Super Tuesday victories will only help in bringing more support for her candidacy.
Hillary Clinton won most of the big primary states, including California and Massachusetts. Obama won several important states, including Missouri and Connecticut, and, perhaps, more delegates, but many of his victories came in states like Georgia or Alabama that Democrats will not win in November or in caucus states dominated by left-wing activists who are unrepresentative either of the party or the fall electorate.
Clinton got pasted among blacks, but she should be able to win back those voters in November. What’s more troubling is her vote among white males and among independents. In California, Clinton lost white men by a whopping 52 to 34 percent. She lost white independents by 58 to 30 percent. In California, 6.5 percent of those voters who didn’t vote for Clinton said that gender of the candidate was “an important factor.” One must assume that the actual percentage is higher (voters don’t like to admit to prejudice) and that many of those voters who would not want to vote for a woman, but who potentially could vote for a Democrat, did not vote at all in the primaries, but will be around in the general election.
Obama, as I previously noted, had trouble with white working-class voters. In New Jersey, which a Democrat pretty much will have to win in November, Obama won only 31 percent of the white vote. Over 11 percent of those who voted against Obama (a group that might also include some Latinos) said that race was an important factor in their vote. Here, too, one must assume that the actual percentage is higher and that it would be even higher among voters in a general election. Democrats can win a state like Connecticut without winning these voters, but it won’t win most of the big Middle Atlantic and Midwestern states without them. ...
Democrats will have to win the Far West, the Middle West, the Northeast, and the Middle Atlantic states, and perhaps pick off a border state like Arkansas or Tennessee. White working-class voters make up a majority in many of the key Midwestern and Middle Atlantic states. If a Democrat can’t win a majority of these voters in a state like Pennsylvania, Missouri, or Ohio, they’ll have trouble winning the election. And as February 5 indicated, both Clinton and Obama are going to have trouble with these voters. Who would have more trouble? My feeling is that it’s a standoff. Hillary has less of a handicap than Obama, but she is not his equal as a politician.
Take the Republican race, for starters. The guy in the lead, John McCain, racked up a series of big-state victories in places like New York, New Jersey, California, and Illinois – thereby cementing his top-dog status in the delegate hunt. The problem is that those states generally vote Democratic in November. In other words, McCain is strongest with moderate Republicans (the type of Republicans who are populous in blue states), but still can’t seem to draw well among red-state conservatives who comprise the base of the party. ...
Meanwhile, on the Democratic side, the picture is far murkier. This is great news for political junkies, who relish the idea of a protracted competition between Hillary and Obama. It’s not so great for the party insiders, who fear that a long guerrilla war for delegates will risk creating fissures among Democrats, pitting race against gender, and potentially embittering millions of young people who have taken the leap for the first time. ...
And since Obama has finished within striking distance of Hillary in the delegate count – her own people peg Hillary's lead at only around 80 delegates, and outside surveys confirm this – he’s in good shape going forward. The next round of contests features Louisiana this weekend, and Virginia and Maryland on Feb. 12 - all of which have large black electorates. (As opposed to large Latino electorates. It should be noted that Obama failed last night to undercut Hillary’s strength among Latinos in key states such as California and Arizona. It appears that the Ted Kennedy endorsement was of limited utility. Kennedy, a hero to Latinos because of his immigration reform work, was supposed to help deliver Latinos. Heck, he couldn't even deliver his own state of Massachussetts. Goodbye, Camelot.)
Obama clearly has the money to lavish attention on the next round of states, having raised a stunning $32 million during January, the largest monthly haul on record; Hillary’s tally, for the same month, was $13 million. But if they cancel each other out next Tuesday, by essentially splitting the next batch of delegates (and that's very likely), and if Wisconsin doesn't bring clarity on Feb. 19, they’ll just move on to Ohio and Texas on March 4. And if Ohio and Texas don’t bring clarity...dare we suggest that Pennsylvania, six weeks later on April 22, could actually become the pivotal state? It would, in fact, become the new Iowa, a state that gets national attention for more than a month, because there are no other Democratic primaries in April.
And it is no longer fanciful to talk about Pennsylvania. Indeed, based on my conservations today, it is clear that there are serious plans afoot to contest Pennsylvania and to raise new money for the effort. There is already serious talk in the Hillary camp, for example, that the state's demographics (lots of suburban women, working-class whites, senior voters) are ideal for her.
This fight ends with the most serious injury I've ever seen in mixed martial arts. A cursory internet search yields the possibly erroneous fact that the loser of this match ended up with some fractured vertebrae.
I know almost nothing about Travis Fulton. But I know that he deserves the nickname "Ironman". Two hundred and thirty nine fights, sometimes fighting four or five matches in a month. He fights so often, I had to check his record before I posted, just in case he had fought another match since I wrote this. I can't imagine the kind of skill and training that takes.
On the other side of the coin is his opponent in this match. I'm sure Jeremy Bullock is a fine Tae Kwon Do artist, but it's pretty clear from the fight that he's had little mma training. Bullock exhibits no takedown defense. He drops into a passable butterfly guard, although possibly by accident. Bullock then does nothing to maintain or improve his position, and allows Fulton to easily pass to side control. Bullock expends too much energy cranking on an ineffectual headlock and does nothing to prevent the slam that ends the match.
Frankly, I think its a disgrace to the sport that a fight like this occurred as late as 1998. The sport's overall level of skill was sufficiently high in 1998 that a fight like this should not have happened. Also, a thirty pound weight difference? It's fights like this that cause old men to describe the sport as "human cockfighting".
Compare the above fight with the one below from 2004, featuring Kevin Randleman versus Fedor Emelianenko:
The slam Randleman delivers is one of the best I've ever seen. Over 400lbs. plus all the momentum of the throw come down on Fedor's head. Not only is Fedor not injured, he's not even dazed. Fedor wins the fight moments later via kimura.
Randleman takes down Fedor and lands in his half guard. As Randleman tries to pass the half guard, Fedor tries to reverse their position, and the fighters scramble to their feet. Randleman slams Fedor; beautifully executed. In the slow motion replay, you can see that Fedor manages to absorb some of the impact of the throw with his arm and shoulder. As they hit the ground, both fighters are instantly scrambling for better position, with Randleman ending up on top in north-south position. Fedor does a great job here protecting himself from knees to the head. Fedor quickly reverses the position. Randleman tries to control Fedor's body, at the cost of taking several punches to the head. Once he tries to block the punches, Fedor quickly controls his arm and sinks the armlock for a submission victory.
If mixed martial arts still consisted of fighters like Bullock (sorry, dude!), I'd agree with it's detractors. But the sport has matured and the skill level has increased, making serious injuries rare and the fights much more exciting.
Well, tomorrow is obviously a huge day. I've been spending a helluva lot of time trying to understand what's going on -- let's face it, this is the apex of the political season for the dedicated junkie. And I am that.
It was exciting to see guys decked out in Obama gear waving signs and soliciting honking at the La Cienega entrance to the expressway this morning. And it looks like California is, at the least, going to be a very tight race.
...I presented a kind of nightmarish version of sexism -- the East and West put together. I find it, in a way, humorous and paradoxical -- the idea of bringing together two extremely opposite ways of treating women that is, at the same time, sexist. To me this follows the tradition of feminist art. I'm creating a pastiche of two completely opposite yet very similar ways of controlling women.
But as soon as Butchie received the first of two gunshots to the knee, about 40 minutes into the show, a pall was cast over the assembled crew. Shine began the love-fest: “Oh sh-t! I can’t believe they f—ed with my man. And I had tall respect for Snoop.” He was referring to one of two henchmen Marlo had sent to forcibly obtain information from Butchie. “Never thought I’d see the day.”
“Oh sh-t!” Orlando shouted. “Butchie? He’s my boy. And a good, hard-working man don’t deserve this. He’s like my father.”
After a final shot to the head claimed Butchie’s life, Flavor couldn’t hide his disappointment. “I say we find Snoop and that other [guy, Chris], beat their black a– to death.”
“It’s a TV show,” I said, sarcastically. I was surprised at the display of pro-Butchie sentiment.
I was thrown a “f–k you” stare that only men with deep knowledge of hand-to-hand combat could give.