BE REMARKABLE: We're trying already.

The University of Iowa has launched its new campaign: "Be Remarkable." Check out our remarkable action plan.


I REALLY HOPE THIS IS TRUE: Marines guarding Saddam Hussein have repeatedly forced him to watch South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut.

There really aren't words.

IOWA STATE SCIENTISTS SHOULD GO COW-TIPPING INSTEAD: Proving that they have way too much time on their hands, Iowa State scientists are perfecting a method of ethanol fuel purification that yields food-grade alcohol. Corn is awesome.


You ain't stealing their tip jar.

If you live in the Southeast, get your free frappuchino on Tuesday between 2-5pm. Please include a tip.

Malaysians are boycotting Starbucks over U.S. support of Israel. The real news is that there are eleven Starbucks in Malaysia.

Starbucks wants us to buy, um...I mean, "read," more books.

BONO UPDATE, PART DOUZE: Following in the steps of the Rolling Stones, U2 has gone Dutch in search of windmills and tax relief...okay, mostly tax relief.

The tax rate on royalty earnings in the Netherlands is only a few per cent, while Ireland has recently brought in tax changes which have imposed a cap of €250,000 (£168,000) on tax-free incomes for artists resident in the republic. Hence, U2 set up an umbrella financial group in the country.

Hopefully they got some free wooden shoes too, eh?

As we all know, Bono is the world's coolest humanitarian, donating loads of money to every government but his own. And Irish Government Officials are a bit peeved about this.

The Guardian quoted Irish Labour party's finance spokeswoman, Joan Burton as saying: ‘Having listened to Bono on the necessity for the Irish government to give more money to Ireland Aid ... I am surprised that U2 are not prepared to contribute to the exchequer on a fair basis along with the bulk of Irish taxpayers.’


A DISTINGUISHED SCHOOL, INDEED: Earlier today, Princeton Review released their annual list of college rankings.

Here's how the University of Iowa stacked up:

#14 Teaching Assistants Teach Too Many Upper-Level Courses

#1 Their Students (Almost) Never Study

#15 Lots of Beer

#12 Lots of Hard Liquor

#9 Party Schools

Special congratulations goes out to University of Wisconsin-Madison for having the most beer on campus.

I guess all of the hard liquor majorly hampers the studying...

RUPERT EVERETT DOES NOT ENJOY A GRANDE SKIM NO-WHIP MOCHA...POSSIBLY: For those of you who are less adamant followers of The Starbucks, let me refill your cup with this Guatemala Antigua of a tussle.

Apparently, the Hollywood star (who I seriously haven't seen since My Best Friend's Wedding) doesn't want The Starbucks in his neighborhood.

Crazy Englishman, must be too many hazy days.

Quite seriously though, Everett told the UK Daily Mail: "Starbucks is spreading like a cancer. Nobody in the neighborhood wants it, including me. There are plenty of diners and coffee shops there already."

Okay, so I get your point...small business...yada yada yada...save the world...truth, justice, and the caffeinated way!

The Starbucks is like a modern-day Lex Luthor and their holiday Gingerbread Latte is my kryptonite!

Noble effort, but The Starbucks will undoubtedly beat you or remain your foil, my friend.


Destroying Iowa One Ranking at a Time

FIRST BUSINESS WEEK, NOW PRINCETON REVIEW: Things are getting interesting at the University of Iowa - the University of Texas has been ranked as the "Best Party School in the Nation."

Alums out there - what do you reminisce about from your time at Iowa? Great classes (let's be honest, now)? No. Great facilities? Dude, we're paying $6,000 a year and that's with inflation! Our IMU is so decrepit that filming of Tales from the Crypt could commence any day.

Let me succinctly answer that question. You thought about that time at Field House when you bought rail drinks for all your fraternity buddies for less than the price of a Starbucks frappuccino.

But in the never-ending quest to pull our rankings up by the tail and focus on "academics," university officials have cracked down and our equally important rankings have fallen.

Important to increasing the value of our degree? Yes. Arguably damaging to a less scholastic distinction? Perhaps.

Case and point, Business Week recently ranked our superb undergraduate program 39th in the nation...and that's after our Big Ten colleagues Michigan State, Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, and Penn State.

There are no kudos for being seventh best of eleven.

What we have always been awesome at is drawing in the crowds for the good times. We work hard, we play hard, and we remain earnestly Midwestern about football.

As fellow Iowa football fan and blogger Brady points out, at the whim of University Officials, the grass lot on Riverside and Myrtle has been closed down for Fall tailgating, effectively leaving hundreds of tailgaters without a pot.

Look - I'm not saying that we need to invite Jose and Jack into the classroom, I'm just pointing out that we need to try to remain distinguished at something...anything.



A Day at the Fair

Happier Days: Presidential Candidate Joe Lieberman waits in line for a funnel cake

THE BLUE RIBBON CAST OF CANDIDATES: Although the Iowa State Fair may be the second-largest state fair in the world (seriously: you suck, Texas), it's got more political action than the New Hampshire Primary!

Iowans who gather for the fair will see more than the butter cow and world's largest hog this year. They'll also be treated to some quality corn-on-the-cob time with folks used to pork-barrel spending.

According to Political Wire, New York Gov. George Pataki (R), Newt Gingrich (R), Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack (D), John Edwards (D), Sen Joe Biden (D-DE), Sen. Evan Bayh (D-IN), Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), and Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-TN) will all swing through the fair this weekend.

Past Fair politicos include President Bush ('02), former U.S. Sen. Bob Graham ('03), Howard Dean ('03), Senator Joe Lieberman ('03), former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis ('87), and U.S. Rep. Dick Gephardt ('88).

Kids, don't forget to eat your obligatory fat fried Twinkie on your way to Ye Olde Mill!



Gems Beyond the Headlines

File this under the "you've got to be kidding me" actions taken by the UN. Although the headline of this AFP article is about Israel's decision to expand its ground offensive in southern Lebanon, check out this gem hidden toward the end of the article:

"In Geneva, the UN Human Rights Council voted to set up a commission of inquiry into 'systematic' Israeli attacks on civilians in Lebanon.

Twenty-seven of the 47 member countries backed a resolution submitted by Islamic nations, despite concerns the text was one-sided because it failed to tackle attacks by Hezbollah in northern Israel. "

The text of the resolution is here. It lists 22 signatories, including most of Israel's Muslim neighbors except Turkey and Iraq.

Maybe, during the course of their investigation, they'll stumble onto the fact that Hezbollah's entire offensive strategy is to kill as many Israelis (Jews and Arabs, soldiers and civilians) as possible with indiscriminate rocket attacks in order to sap the collective will of the Israeli people. Maybe.

We at the Hawkeye Republican favor holding all armies accountable to the law of war, which includes ensuring that military forces discriminate between combatants and non-combatants in the conduct of war. But the entire reason there is a tragedy unfolding in Lebanon today is because of Hezbollah's aggression.

Ultimately, it brings up the question of how serious the UN is in combating terrorism.



The Spirit of the Season

Here at the Hawkeye Republican, we don't like to get too involved in Democratic primaries. Still, no one can ignore the fact that anti-war challenger Ned Lamont defeated incumbent Joe Lieberman for the Democratic party's senate nomination yesterday in Connecticut. Senator Lieberman has been one of influential and respected senators from either party in the past twenty years. His crime? To support the war in the Iraq.

I have alot to say on this, but a Washington Times quotation from one of America's premiere foreign policy experts, Michael Moore, captures the spirit of this coming election pretty well:

"Let the resounding defeat of Senator Joe Lieberman send a cold shiver down the spine of every Democrat who supported the invasion of Iraq and who continues to support, in any way, this senseless, immoral, unwinnable war."



In Rummy's Words

Secretary Rumsfeld contrasts the tactics of the US and its allies with the tactics of our enemy in Iraq in a recent statement before the Senate Armed Services Committee.


It Makes You Wonder

This recent conflict in Lebanon, a single, but meaningful front in the West's War on Terror, introduced me to UN Security Council Resolution 1559. Passed on September 2nd, 2004, it called for the "disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias" within the context of a greater push to free Lebanon from Syria and Iran's grip. This language sounds great, except that Israel's recent military incursion has been the only attempt by any free power to undermine Hezbollah's terrorist machinery and restore territorial sovereignty to Lebanon.

It made me wonder: what other resolutions has the UN Security Council passed but not implemented? Are 'empty promises' a common theme? And what have been the consequences? Here's the UN website archives, with what appears to be the complete list.

Maybe I've reached the upper limit of the UN's purpose: to bring nations together, decide on an international course of action, and wait for someone responsible or desperate enough to enforce the will of the Security Council.

I'll take a look these next few days and see what there is to see.



Looking Past November

The conventional wisdom says that the Republicans will lose seats in the both the House and the Senate, perhaps losing enough to become the minority party on Capitol Hill. As Byron York from the National Review Online reports, the would-be chairman of the House Judiciary Committee details his 26 point plan to impeach the President if conventional wisdom holds.


A Worthy Cause

A fellow blogger, Extreme Mortman, asked that I pass along this charity to our loyal Hawkeye Republican readers. ThanksUSA is a scholarship fund to send family members of our fighting men and women to school. Check out the link (either one, aren't options great?) for more information.

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