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MARK STEYN: Flying the flag
The Daily Telegraph ^ | September 7, 2002 | Mark Steyn

Posted on 09/06/2002 11:28:13 PM PDT by MadIvan

I was filling up at a truck stop this week and a guy pulled in alongside. Ford pick-up, late 80s, little rusty. He had a full-size American flag sticking out the rear cab window and a sticker saying "United We Stand Against Terrorism" on the tailgate and a couple more flag decals on the sides.

He glanced at the car in front. A li'l ol' gran'ma was putting five bucks' worth in her two-door sedan. She had a little flag flying from her aerial and a "Proud To Be An American" sticker in the rear window.

Then he looked at me. And I realised my vehicle was bare. The missus had put a laminated "Don't Mess With The US" sign on the back, but, as the year rolled on, somewhere or other it dropped off leaving just the plastic suction pad, the last vestigial hint of my patriotic fervour.

The flags went up on the cars after September 11 and they never came down, and after a year you hardly notice that half the folks on the road have mini flagpoles clipped to both side windows and are driving along fluttering like a grand unending ceremonial escort.

Not everyone sports them, of course, and what bugged me was that the guy in the pick-up had me pegged as a conscious non-flag-flyer, as some pantywaist milquetoast America-disparaging type like those professors at Berkeley, where they've banned the Stars and Stripes from all September 11 commemorations lest it make anyone "uncomfortable". I felt a strange urge to go up to him and say no, look, honestly, I'll bet I'm just as angry as you.

Underneath all the "coping" and "healing" and the rest of the Dianafied soft-focus blur this Wednesday, you won't hear a lot about anger. But quiet, righteous anger is what a lot of Americans still feel. I feel angry every time I'm at Boston's godawful Logan Airport, as crappy and chaotic now as it was a year ago when I dropped off my niece and nephew to fly home from vacation.

Ever since, somewhere between the parking garage and the gate, I think of Mohammed Atta and his accomplices - was this his check-in line? did he use this payphone? A couple of months back there was a guy ahead of me at the cardboard-croissant counter with a thick cloying scent, and I remembered Atta instructing his crew the night before to wear cologne and remove their body hair. What was he thinking as he watched his victims board? Did he see two-year-old Christine Hanson, bound for Disneyland with her parents?

It's the details that stick. I was in a skyscraper last week and looked across and caught the eye of a woman in the building across the street, and I thought of the people in the south tower, after the first plane hit, glancing out the window and seeing the jumpers from the north tower going by - men in business suits, necktie up and flapping, choosing to take one last gulp of air and plunge to their deaths rather than burn and choke in the heat.

I feel sorry for the 55 per cent of Europeans who, according to a poll last week, think falling secretaries and atomised infants are something to do with "US foreign policy". Mohammed Atta and his chums were wealthy, privileged and psychotic, yet feeble British churchmen line up to say the people who did this did it because they're impoverished, downtrodden yet rational. Granted that the fetid swamp of equivalence is often mistaken for the moral high ground, it's rarely been so crowded.

The stampede started almost immediately. On September 12, the Ottawa Citizen ran a column by Susan Riley headlined "At Times Like This, We Thank God That We're Canadians". Oh, God, I groaned, not the usual moral preening. But no, Ms Riley skipped that and went straight for naked self-interest: "Our best protection may be distancing ourselves a little more explicitly from US foreign policy … pursuing a reasonable and moderate course in the world's trouble spots."

I've heard it a thousand times since and I still don't get it. By "distancing yourself" from the victims of September 11 you move yourself closer to the perpetrators, closer to barbarism. It may be "reasonable and moderate", but it's also profoundly self-corroding.

This isn't a "clash of civilisations" so much as a clash within civilisations - in the West, between those who believe in the values of liberal democracy and those too numbed by multiculturalist bromides to recognise even the most direct assault on them; and in the Islamic world, between what's left of the moderate Muslim temperament and the Saudi-radicalised death-cult Islamists.

I don't want to be "moderate and reasonable" in the face of Mohammed Atta. A world that "distances" itself from the US to get closer to him is a world that's more misogynist, bigoted, corrupt and superstitious. On this anniversary, I'll have a new flag on my truck and Neil Young's great September 11 anthem in the CD player:

No one has the answers,
But one thing is true,
You got to turn on evil,
When it's comin' after you.

You got to face it down,
And when it tries to hide,
You got to go in after it,
And never be denied.


Amen.


TOPICS: Canada; Culture/Society; Editorial; News/Current Events; United Kingdom
KEYWORDS: flag; marksteynlist; oldglory; steyn; us
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An excellent, if unusually serious piece by Mark Steyn. Let's stand together and face down this evil...till it is blasted from the face of the earth.

Regards, Ivan


1 posted on 09/06/2002 11:28:13 PM PDT by MadIvan
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To: Tony in Hawaii; AxelPaulsenJr; anatolfz; iceskater; Truth Addict; TonyInOhio; Grampa Dave; ELS; ...
Bump!
2 posted on 09/06/2002 11:28:33 PM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
Granted that the fetid swamp of equivalence is often mistaken for the moral high ground, it's rarely been so crowded.
Love Mark Steyn's writing! BUMP
3 posted on 09/06/2002 11:36:11 PM PDT by Libertina
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To: MadIvan
Mark Steyn quotes Neil Young. Guess those Canadians like to stick together.

Steyn Rocks.
4 posted on 09/06/2002 11:41:14 PM PDT by swarthyguy
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To: MadIvan; Sidebar Moderator; Admin Moderator
If anyone has a nice recipe for fudge, do let's post it under breaking news, shall we?
5 posted on 09/06/2002 11:53:09 PM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
This is not the first time Steyn has been under breaking news. I apologise for causing any offense. But perhaps you're being a trifle grumpy?

Ivan

6 posted on 09/06/2002 11:55:18 PM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
This is not the first time Steyn has been under breaking news.

I don't know what someone's past mistakes have to do with anything, but aren't you being a trifle goofy, posting an editorial/commentary under breaking news? When Steyn pays his light bill, does that also qualify as breaking? Are the moderators paying attention anymore, or just picking their noses until they bleed?

7 posted on 09/06/2002 11:59:35 PM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
I don't know what someone's past mistakes have to do with anything, but aren't you being a trifle goofy, posting an editorial/commentary under breaking news? When Steyn pays his light bill, does that also qualify as breaking? Are the moderators paying attention anymore, or just picking their noses until they bleed?

Who died and made you the Catagories Gestapo?

Ivan

8 posted on 09/07/2002 12:01:19 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
Just learn the definition of breaking news, tough guy, and you'll make a lot of people happy. Over and out.
9 posted on 09/07/2002 12:03:02 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
Just learn the definition of breaking news, tough guy, and you'll make a lot of people happy. Over and out.

And learn this - you're confusing me with someone who give's a rat's arse about what you think. "Over and out", "tough guy".

Ivan

10 posted on 09/07/2002 12:04:11 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: paulklenk
I've got $10 on MadIvan for the win on a TKO in the 8th round.
11 posted on 09/07/2002 12:12:54 AM PDT by Sangamon Kid
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To: Sangamon Kid; Admin Moderator
What exactly is it about breaking news that is so gosh-darn all-mysterious and elusive to the average Freeper? There is an editorial category. Use it. If you insist on creating a sloppy environment at FR, you will drive away the rational, intelligent people and keep it safe for any and every member of the Stupid Parade that happens to walk by. Why are you so threatened by intelligent people trying to make this site function better?
12 posted on 09/07/2002 12:17:33 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
"rat s**t"
13 posted on 09/07/2002 12:21:17 AM PDT by KS Flyover
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To: KS Flyover
"rat s**t"! LOL!
14 posted on 09/07/2002 12:23:33 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
Just being, :`)
15 posted on 09/07/2002 12:25:34 AM PDT by KS Flyover
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To: paulklenk
Why are you so threatened by intelligent people trying to make this site function better?

The only intelligent people on the thread before I showed up were involved in verabl fisticuffs. How intelligent is that? The intelligent guy wouldn't have been goaded into an escalating war of words.

16 posted on 09/07/2002 12:25:50 AM PDT by Sangamon Kid
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To: MadIvan
btttttttttttttttt
17 posted on 09/07/2002 12:29:53 AM PDT by dennisw
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To: Sangamon Kid
"War of words" is an oxymoron; they're just words. They're what we use here at FR. Sorry that's so upsetting to you.

Perhaps you'd like it better if we let FR become overgrown with weeds, bad habits, and not-so-sharp people who can't take criticism. Gee, what a place that would be! People would come here in droves.

Hey, wait -- they're leaving in droves.

18 posted on 09/07/2002 12:33:08 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
I agree. He insists on creating a sloppy enviroment here at FR.

I hate this forum just for this point, and refuse to ever visit this site again.(sarcasm off)

19 posted on 09/07/2002 12:36:37 AM PDT by fineright
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To: fineright
(ignore on)

Gee, I can't wait for that feature, so I can watch the Stupid Parade dissipate into cyberspace. Instead of the other way around -- with the smart ones leaving and the not-so-bright at the helm, gleefully ramming the site into every iceberg that floats by.
20 posted on 09/07/2002 12:42:17 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
Only if it's a really good recipe.
21 posted on 09/07/2002 12:42:23 AM PDT by Let's Roll
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To: paulklenk
This thread wasn't doing anyone any harm. Mark Steyn is very popular on this board. YOU decided, whether out of hubris or an inflated sense of your own importance to make an issue out of it, and turn this thread, into an argument.

Brilliant. A nice patriotic piece turned into dross because you obviously have a bile spewing control problem, rivalling Linda Blair's escapades with hot pea soup. You are engaging in precisely the sort of behaviour that drives people away - people come here to discuss, not engage in fisticuffs with every passing fool who has more chips on his shoulder than brain cells.

Now run along. The adults on this thread would rather discuss the noble themes in this article than waste time with you.

Ivan

22 posted on 09/07/2002 12:51:47 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
Bump-Bump

Great article!

Thanks for posting it.

23 posted on 09/07/2002 12:55:30 AM PDT by Jagdgewehr
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To: MadIvan
bump
24 posted on 09/07/2002 12:57:54 AM PDT by primeval patriot
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To: MadIvan
Mark Steyn is very popular on this board. YOU decided, whether out of hubris or an inflated sense of your own importance to make an issue out of it, and turn this thread, into an argument.

Popular doesn't equal breaking news. It's an editorial. If you can't figure out the difference, educate yourself and try to do better next time. YOU turned it into a problem by 1] misposting, 2] acting snide when it was brought to your attention, and 3] failing to admit your mistake. Don't get mad at the adults just because they're trying to keep this site out of the toilet (and out of the control of the not-so-bright).

25 posted on 09/07/2002 12:58:26 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: MadIvan
Mark Steyn is very popular on this board.

He sure is, and so are you. Thanks for posting it!

26 posted on 09/07/2002 1:00:36 AM PDT by DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet
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To: MadIvan
By the way, you will notice I haven't chastised you for posting this editorial -- only for posting it in the wrong category. I am quite eager to join anyone else in supporting the fact that it has been posted.
27 posted on 09/07/2002 1:02:50 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
Popular doesn't equal breaking news. It's an editorial. If you can't figure out the difference, educate yourself and try to do better next time. YOU turned it into a problem by 1] misposting, 2] acting snide when it was brought to your attention, and 3] failing to admit your mistake. Don't get mad at the adults just because they're trying to keep this site out of the toilet (and out of the control of the not-so-bright).

Rubbish. If you wanted to handle this in a mature way, you would have messaged me privately. Rather, by posting this in public, you showed that you merely were hoping to provoke an argument. By doing so, you knew precisely that people would argue right back at you - and you did in such a superior, insufferable tone that it was demanding a response. This hardly marks you out as the guardian of the site's values and mores - a role which was not assigned to you anyway.

And you have the gall to claim to be the "adult". A genuine adult knows when to be discreet, when to fight, and when to remain silent. As I understand you have been banned from here before, I suppose you have difficulty with the last point.

Ivan

28 posted on 09/07/2002 1:05:16 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
The stampede started almost immediately. On September 12, the Ottawa Citizen ran a column by Susan Riley headlined "At Times Like This, We Thank God That We're Canadians". Oh, God, I groaned, not the usual moral preening. But no, Ms Riley skipped that and went straight for naked self-interest: "Our best protection may be distancing ourselves a little more explicitly from US foreign policy … pursuing a reasonable and moderate course in the world's trouble spots."

I was not aware of this. It is profoundly disappointing.

29 posted on 09/07/2002 1:10:53 AM PDT by DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet
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To: DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet
What's peculiar about that is that Le Monde, not necessarily an ally of America, had a headline, "We are all Americans now". You have to wonder about Canada's media if the French one was more pro-American after September 11th.

In the long run France's media reverted to type, but still.

Best Regards, Ivan

30 posted on 09/07/2002 1:13:32 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
It just makes me appreciate Brits (though not necessarily your press ; ) ) even more. You are true friends.
31 posted on 09/07/2002 1:16:36 AM PDT by DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet
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To: MadIvan
As I understand you have been banned from here before, I suppose you have difficulty with the last point.

My friend, everyone with a brain has been banned from here before. Haven't you been paying attention? It is one of the ways we measure who is thinking for themselves and who is part of a herd of mindless cheerleaders. To have lasted, what, four years without being banned is not something to be self-satisfied about.

And for the record, I am using my original handle, the one I first signed up with.

I guess you have to be a Web designer or programmer or something to understand the value of keeping a site well organized.

32 posted on 09/07/2002 1:16:42 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: Sidebar Moderator; Admin Moderator; MadIvan
Thanks for moving this from breaking to editorial. I apologize for having to yell "rat s**t" about it, but if you let me know the protocol for requesting such a move in the future, I'll follow it.

And Ivan, I think we've not only had a good time, we've also learned something. Good night.

33 posted on 09/07/2002 1:26:18 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
My friend, everyone with a brain has been banned from here before. Haven't you been paying attention? It is one of the ways we measure who is thinking for themselves and who is part of a herd of mindless cheerleaders. To have lasted, what, four years without being banned is not something to be self-satisfied about.

OUCH! I didn't know this. I've never heard of that before now.

I usually avoid "cheerleading," and banishment.

I thought it was enough just to be a critical thinker, thorough reader, and an occasional pithy poster (still working on that one).

I guess I'm going to have to work harder at this.

34 posted on 09/07/2002 1:43:50 AM PDT by Jagdgewehr
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To: MadIvan; DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet
Le Monde, not necessarily an ally of America, had a headline, "We are all Americans now".

Written by Jean-Marie Colombani and published on September 12, 2001:

"We are all Americans now"

35 posted on 09/07/2002 1:44:44 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: Jagdgewehr
I guess I'm going to have to work harder at this.

Do that and I'll be your cheerleader. LOL!

36 posted on 09/07/2002 1:46:30 AM PDT by paulklenk
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To: paulklenk
I guess you have to be a Web designer or programmer or something to understand the value of keeping a site well organized.
Do you think that people who sign up multiple accounts make "keeping a site well organized" a tougher job?
37 posted on 09/07/2002 2:09:34 AM PDT by KS Flyover
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To: paulklenk
My friend, everyone with a brain has been banned from here before. Haven't you been paying attention? It is one of the ways we measure who is thinking for themselves and who is part of a herd of mindless cheerleaders. To have lasted, what, four years without being banned is not something to be self-satisfied about.

I see. So one should aspire to be disagreeable and banned. Pardon me if I don't share your view of achieving intelligence - I thought it was achieved through education, study, thinking, discretion and good taste.

And for the record, I am using my original handle, the one I first signed up with.

Not that it matters much.

I guess you have to be a Web designer or programmer or something to understand the value of keeping a site well organized.

And what precisely do you think I do for a living? Again, you are carrying whatever personal demons you harbour onto this thread for no good purpose. If your intent was to get the thread moved, you could have done it far more discreetly without ruining the tenor or harmony of the thread. But this has given an insight into you - that somehow you equate rudeness with being intelligence, snobbishness with wit, pedantry with sophistication. If you aspire to be banned again, likely all you have to do is keep it up.

Ivan

38 posted on 09/07/2002 2:12:42 AM PDT by MadIvan
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To: MadIvan
Thanks for posting this, Ivan. Mr. Steyn is correct in still being angry, because I certainly am. I didn't know that about that Canadian columnist....blech!

Sorry you got hassled about this. It probably shouldn't have been in breaking news, but then lots of things wind up there some days, including announcements and fundraisers. A courteous, private message and a note to the moderator would have been sufficient.

At any rate, I appreciate you taking the time to post this and I am very glad you are here.

39 posted on 09/07/2002 3:13:23 AM PDT by Miss Marple
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To: paulklenk
A little friendly advice.

Wearing underwear too tight constricts the circulation of blood, thereby restricting the flow of oxygen to the brain which already suufers unduly in your particular case by siiting on it.

It is advisable at times like this to perhaps simply engage in that common nocturnal activity called sleep and let the neurons take a rest and pick up nutrients. It is obvious that your synaptic centers are way too overworked at the moment and need to be tended after.

Do it for the children.

40 posted on 09/07/2002 3:18:40 AM PDT by Cacique
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To: MadIvan
Good post. Thanks.
41 posted on 09/07/2002 3:54:52 AM PDT by aBootes
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To: MadIvan
BOOKMARKED
BUMP

42 posted on 09/07/2002 4:06:43 AM PDT by ppaul
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To: MadIvan
I'm not sure what I'm enjoying more, Steyn and his usual laser focused commentary, or your effortless swatting of the insufferable paulklenk.

Bravo for keepin' your head about ya.

43 posted on 09/07/2002 4:21:06 AM PDT by Damocles
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To: MadIvan
MadIvan, I enjoyed this article. Thanks for posting it.

Mark's comment about this being a "clash within civilizations" was a diamond in the rough. Very perceptive.

Also, thanks for being a voice of reason in GB. Always enjoy your posts.

Freepgards,

44 posted on 09/07/2002 4:22:23 AM PDT by exit82
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To: MadIvan; shaggy eel; Byron_the_Aussie; Clive; JohnHuang2; MeeknMing; Pokey78
<< .... the 55 per cent of Europeans who, according to a poll last week, think falling secretaries and atomised infants are something to do with "The United States of America's foreign policy".

Mohammed Atta and his cohorts were wealthy, privileged and psychotic, yet feeble British churchmen line up to say the people who did this did it because they're impoverished, downtrodden yet rational.

Granted that the Jack Straw Fetid Swamp of Moral Equivalence is often mistaken for the moral high ground -- but it's rarely been so crowded. >>

Great Steyn work, Ives.

And good to have you -- and those of your compatriots who feel like you -- on board.

Now what about that other fifty nine million six hundred and forty seven thousand United Kingdomers, including that very large majority of them that crowd Jack Straw's Fetid Swamp of Moral Equivalence and that line up to say that the islamanzi barbarians who perpetrated this Evil did it because they're impoverished and downtrodden?

And that it was all justified by "The United States of America's foreign policy?"

What about them?

Eh?

I thank God for the huge majority of Australasians and for the Israelis who see this attack by the world's most Evil upon the world's most Good and most Generous -- and who ALL support Our Beloved FRaternal Republic at this time.

I thank God for them.

Best FReegards -- Brian

45 posted on 09/07/2002 4:35:46 AM PDT by Brian Allen
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To: dennisw; veronica; BenF; knighthawk
A #45/Steyn Happy New Year Ping to Y'All!
46 posted on 09/07/2002 4:45:47 AM PDT by Brian Allen
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To: Sangamon Kid; MadIvan
I'll take MadIvan for $20 in the 3rd.
47 posted on 09/07/2002 5:03:41 AM PDT by FreedomPoster
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To: MadIvan
MadIvan, I appreciate you putting this article up! If it's Steyn I WANT to see it !
Thanks !
48 posted on 09/07/2002 5:15:42 AM PDT by MeekOneGOP
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To: MadIvan
This is a great piece. Thanks for posting it-- under "breeaking news" or otherwise. (Steyn is important enough to me to be in breaking news. Talk about a tempest in a teapot!)
49 posted on 09/07/2002 5:18:10 AM PDT by Clara Lou
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To: Cacique
ROFL !
50 posted on 09/07/2002 5:28:49 AM PDT by MeekOneGOP
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