Archive for November, 2011

Malbec, my favorite…

Friday, November 25th, 2011

… ever since my trip to Argentina last year.

How Malbec Became the Wine of ‘Regular People’

there are plenty of reasons that Malbec might appeal to “regular people” (perhaps the same reasons it doesn’t appeal to sommeliers): It’s rarely expensive or hard to find. Its flavors are straightforward, with notes of spice and red-berry fruit. The best Malbecs also have a lively acidity and approachable tannins. I think of it as a meatier, manlier version of Merlot.

In the > $20 range:
2009 Altos Las Hormigas Valle de Uco Terroir Malbec, $12
2010 Crios Malbec, $11
2008 Bodega Norton Reserva Malbec, $14
2009 Hacienda del Plata Malbec, $11


(h/t Yanqui Mike)


Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

President Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Day proclamation

Morning Bell: A Day of ‘Public Thanksgiving and Prayer’

Roger’s having champagne and port while celebrating eudaimonia.

Time for apple and pecan pie!


Brian Terry killed by Mexicans armed by F&F hunting for U.S. Border Patrol

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Ace has the link,
Armed illegals stalked Border Patrol
Mexicans were ‘patrolling’ when agent was slain, indictment says

Five illegal immigrants armed with at least two AK-47 semi-automatic assault rifles were hunting for U.S. Border Patrol agents near a desert watering hole known as Mesquite Seep just north of the Arizona-Mexico border when a firefight erupted and one U.S. agent was killed, records show.

A now-sealed federal grand jury indictment in the death of Border Patrol agent Brian A. Terry says the Mexican nationals were “patrolling” the rugged desert area of Peck Canyon at about 11:15 p.m. on Dec. 14 with the intent to “intentionally and forcibly assault” Border Patrol agents.

At least two of the Mexicans carried their assault rifles “at the ready position,” one of several details about the attack showing that Mexican smugglers are becoming more aggressive on the U.S. side of the border.

According to the indictment, the Mexicans were “patrolling the area in single-file formation” a dozen miles northwest of the border town of Nogales and — in the darkness of the Arizona night — opened fire on four Border Patrol agents after the agents identified themselves in Spanish as police officers.

Two AK-47 assault rifles found at the scene came from the failed Fast and Furious operation.

Agent Terry was killed by a gun provided by the US government:

In the Terry killing, two Romanian-built AK-47 assault rifles found at the scene were identified as having been purchased in a Glendale, Ariz., gun shop as part of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF) failed Fast and Furious investigation.

Fifty-one Congressmen and Senators have requested that Eric Holder resign. Why hasn’t he?


Will that “free Cuban healthcare” do Chavez in?

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011

Roger Noriega poses the question,
Botched Cuban care and Chávez’s deceit may have worsened the Venezuelan’s cancer

Fidel Castro’s vastly over-rated healthcare system may finally have achieved something noteworthy: killing Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chávez. According to an investigative report authored by Leonardo Coutinho and Duda Teixeira that appeared in Brazil’s premier newsmagazine Veja on Saturday (November 19), Cuban doctors at that country’s premier medical facility bungled the initial treatment of Chávez’s prostate cancer and may have rushed him to an early grave.

The Brazilian report, which quotes several of that country’s cancer specialists and urologists, delivers a damning assessment of the Cuban care:

[In July 2011] Chavez was hospitalized in Havana [at the Center for Medical and Surgical Research (CIMEQ)] to remove the prostate tumor. Surgery, not recommended for cases of neoplasia in this gland with metastasis, may have been a very serious medical error that accelerated the spread of cancer. A second surgery was carried out…. From that moment on, European physicians with imported equipment directed the therapy. The Cubans were relegated to the role of observers. [Emphasis added]

The Veja report cites Brazilian medical specialists to describe the substandard equipment and treatment at CIMEQ, a facility reserved for the dictatorship’s elite and dollar-paying tourists.

A second fatal decision was self-inflicted. Chávez must have known from the beginning that his cancer was terminal, because he opted to continue receiving treatment in Cuba in order to keep his country in the dark about his true condition. For example, Veja reveals for the first time that foreign minister Nicolas Maduro traveled to Brazil in early July to consult with that country’s leading oncologists at the Sîrio-Lebanese Hospital of São Paulo. Rather than transfer to that renowned Brazilian facility, where the current and previous presidents of Brazil have been treated for cancer, Chávez preferred to risk care in Cuba to keep his people from knowing the truth.

Babalu has more.

Venezuelan Presidency/Zuma Press

The Wall Street Journal: Reports of Chávez’s Illness Cloud Campaign

A Nov. 1 report from a European intelligence agency says medical tests show a “clear and significant growth of cancerous cells in the patient’s marrow,” according to a copy of the report viewed by The Wall Street Journal.

Doctors treating Mr. Chávez privately concluded that “the spread of the disease is now accelerating,” the report said. Reports by another intelligence agency drew the same conclusion.

This is worth noting, not only for the repercussions in Venezuela, but also for the hemisphere. Chavez’s regime is

increasingly sustained by China, Cuba, drug-trafficking generals, and a paramilitary militia

carrying enormous influence in Latin America, disproportionate for a country of its size. If the US ignores what is already taking place, the upcoming power struggle will harm US interests regarding our national security and economic standing.


Real Clear World liveblogs the debate

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

My colleagues at Real Clear World are liveblogging tonight’s Republican national security debate starting at 8PM Eastern.

Scheduled participants include:

Carl Cannon, Washington Editor, RealClearPolitics
Daniel Larison, Contributing Editor, The American Conservative
Greg Scoblete, Editor, RealClearWorld
Jeremy Lott, Editor, RealClearBooks
James Joyner, Managing Editor, Atlantic Council
Jonathan Schanzer, Vice President of Research, Foundation for Defense of Democracies
Justin Logan, Director of Foreign Policy Studies, Cato Institute
Richard Cleary, Research Assistant, American Enterprise Institute
Sally McNamara, Senior Policy Analyst for European Affairs, Heritage Foundation

Click on this link (please note it will play a noisy ad).


Squatters’ rights, LA version

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

Antonio Villaraigosa, mayor of Los Angeles, has offerred the Occupiers office space, housing, and farmland, proving that insanity is alive and well in La-La Land:

Occupy L.A. receives offer to decamp
Protesters could get downtown office space and farmland if they leave City Hall

city officials have offered protesters a $1-a-year lease on a 10,000-square-foot office space near City Hall. He said officials also promised land elsewhere for protesters who wish to farm, as well as additional housing for the contingent of homeless people who joined the camp.

As Jim Hoft said, “this won’t end well.”


Chris Matthews to Obama: “Give us our orders”

Monday, November 21st, 2011

Chris Matthews, during an interview on MSNBC, telling Obama,

Just tell us. Why are we in this fight with him? Tell us, commander, give us our orders, and tell us where we’re going. Give us the mission.

It doesn’t occur to the interviewer, also a member of the media, to question Matthews’s notion that the press should be taking orders from a US President at all.

More at Legal Insurrection. Transcript at News Busters.


The Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, November 21st, 2011

LatinAmerThe week’s must-read article: Jaime Darenblum’s Four Things You Need to Know about Venezuela
The Chávez regime is increasingly sustained by China, Cuba, drug-trafficking generals, and a paramilitary militia.

(1). The regime is financially dependent on China.
(2). The regime is run partly by Cubans.
(3). The regime’s senior military allies are complicit in the drug trade.
(4). The regime has trained thousands of pro-government paramilitary fighters, who represent a serious long-term threat to domestic peace and stability.

Darenblum also touches on the Iranian and Hezbollah presence, and the increasingly violent Venezuelan society. Go read every word.

Tests Mount for Argentine Economy

Bolivian migrants ride out hard times

Chevron Mea Culpa in Spill
Oil Company Underestimated Pressure in Well Off of Brazil

A Path to Victory in the Drug War
Brazil’s Fernando Henrique Cardoso on why legalization of marijuana will reduce the cartels’ threat to Latin democracies.

A Year Out of the Dark in Chile, but Still Trapped

“Pedro Pan” is 50: The story of how 14,000 Cuban children were sent to the US!

The Relajo of the Obama administration’s Cuba travel policy

Stratfor report:
The Mexican Drug Cartel Threat in Central America

Ecuador loses a great statesman

Edgar Terán: R.I.P.

Weapons, weapons, who’s got the weapons? More here.

The return of Amlo: Mexican politics
Left in the lurch
Mexico’s divided leftist party has chosen a veteran radical as its presidential candidate. Will he pull it out of its hole, or dig it in deeper?

Apocalypto for Bondholders?
A Mexican bankruptcy ambushes U.S. investors

A Rags-to-Riches Career Highlights Latin Resurgence

Protests in Peru
Honeymoon over
Ollanta Humala struggles to contain opposition to mining projects

Puerto Rico Allocates Millions More to Cops as Drug Killings Soar

Chavez’s secret fight against cancer

Congressman Carlos Ramos questions Williams F1

Nationals catcher’s kidnapping just one of many in Venezuela

Even driving you cannot reach the boundaries of Venezuelan corruption

The week’s posts:
Dominican-born Muslim convert arrested on plot to bomb NYC
Cuba: Lie down with dogs…
Herman Cain flunks the Versailles test
Costa Risa: A tax increase Costa Ricans are not happy about
LIVECAST The Unwritten Story: How the Media and the Obama Administration Overlook Cuba’s Wave of Repression


Dominican-born Muslim convert arrested on plot to bomb NYC

Sunday, November 20th, 2011

The Wall Street Journal,

New York City authorities said Sunday they thwarted a plot to blow up post offices and police stations with crude pipe bombs.

Authorities charged Jose Pimentel, a Dominican-born Muslim convert, with providing support for an act of terrorism, conspiracy and weapons charges. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Mr. Pimentel was arrested on Saturday after having been watched by the NYPD since May 2009.

The NY Times reports that the 27-yr old was in the process of building three bombs and:

was planning to build and detonate a bomb in New York with government workers, returning military personnel and elected officials as the target

Supposedly he was acting alone.

I’m curious about who converted him, under what circumstances, and what houses of worship he attended here and in the Dominican Republic.



Sunday, November 20th, 2011

Two #OWS leaders are staying at the W Hotel in downtown Manhattan. Their idea of being “the 99%” includes spending $700/night.

Peter Dutro, member of the group’s finance committee, charged the room to his American Express card.

“Don’t leave home without it!”

More on the #OWS organizers here.

Hazmat Crew Called in to Remove 200lbs of Human Feces Near Occupy Santa Cruz (h/t Instapundit).