Thursday, November 30, 2006

FoxBot Banned.

I get comments occasionally from FoxBots. They find a blog and post a comment and a link to a Fox News story. Sometimes the link is relevant, sometimes its is completely out to lunch, and once in a while it is questionable.

Well, I have made an editorial decision and I have banned the FoxBot.

Fox News is for watching on the TV not for reading irrelevant comments on blogs.


You know, I think withdrawal is a very bad thing. There are those who say withdrawal was the correct thing in 1991, but was it? We ended up going back. If we withdraw from Iraq before the job is done guess what? We will go back.

I have a lot more respect for the lefties who argued against the effort from the start than those on both sides who supported the war and are now calling for withdrawal. Those who initially supported the war but now want out seem either like a child who can not do something so they pout and whine about how hard it is, or the other response is a sour grapes.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

One Man's Trash

If we leave Iraq will it just disintegrate on its own?

Unlikely. Hat Tip to Rich Lowry on The Corner for pointing out this article by Nawaf Obain:
In this case, remaining on the sidelines would be unacceptable to Saudi Arabia. To turn a blind eye to the massacre of Iraqi Sunnis would be to abandon the principles upon which the kingdom was founded. It would undermine Saudi Arabia's credibility in the Sunni world and would be a capitulation to Iran's militarist actions in the region.

To be sure, Saudi engagement in Iraq carries great risks -- it could spark a regional war. So be it: The consequences of inaction are far worse.
Source: The Washington Post – Stepping Into Iraq (Saudi Arabia Will Protect Sunnis if the U.S. Leaves)
That would be interesting. The two great Islamic powers Saudi Arabia & Iran are opposed to each other, one Sunni the other Shia. One a nuclear (if not announced, but supposed) power another quite open about its desire to obtain a nuclear weapon and supposed to be close to that goal (I have read Saudi is indeed a nuclear power, though it has not announced its nuclear status. This is a belief I have had since Pakistan announced its test and recent reading have reinforced this belief).

If we bug out of Iraq and Saudi moves in (as is supposed by the article above to be likely) then there will be yet another war between the Sunni & the Shia. However, Mr. Obaid points out the following possible weapon: OIL. However, it would be used in a different manner. Saudi would flood the world markets with oil driving the per barrel priced down. This would be very difficult for Iran to deal with whereas Saudi is better able to deal with the situation, or so Mr. Obaid states (I would guess it true, while Saudi Arabia doesn't produce much other than oil the Arabian Sheiks do invest their wealth).

However, it could come down to a shooting war larger than Saudi Supported Sunni death squads attacking Iran backed Shia death squads. If it does, look for new maps to come out. Iraq will be torn asunder and the situation would probably drive the Gulf nations to unite (with the possible exception of Oman which has a historical identity of its own) and grab a chunk of Iraq. Iran, of course, would help itself and then there is the problem of Kurdistan. Turkey would probably move against Kurdistan and this would really set something off as there is no way the Kurds of Northern Iraq would sit for being absorbed into Turkey.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Writer's Block

I don't know what to write about. I have a piece I cranked out on SU and the person I am writing it for wants a little more. When I wrote it I put myself on a 200 word limit and then I came to find out the limit is 500 words or less. I could have probably finished the piece out on Sunday as I was writing for extreme economy of words then. Now, I am having a hard time finishing.

I went to another blog of mine and nothing doing there either. Some of my other writing projects I didn't even think of trying either.

Usually, I find topics and things to write about fairly easily. A little harder is cranking out coherent words about the topic, even harder is to take time to hone the piece real fine.

Once in a while the topic and words come out like a Mozart symphony. Mozart often put it how good music sounds like oil flowing, i.e. smooth. However, of late the words come out like spoiled milk in chunks and anything but smooth.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Al-Pazeera Watch Is Busy.

Curt at Flopping aces busts Al-Pazeera pumping the enemy propaganda into our news. Apparently, an Al-Pazeera ran a story about a Mosque in Iraq getting attacked and worshippers burned while alive. The story was picked up and widely circulated. The source of the story was a certain Capt. Jamil Hussein, apparently he is the go to guy for attacks on Sunnis.

Central Command in Iraq disputes the story saying their investigations turn up no evidence of the claims. However, more is the status of the source: Capt. Jamil Hussein.
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

Dear Associated Press:

On Nov. 24, 2006, your organization published an article by Qais Al-Bashir about six Sunnis being burned alive in the presence of Iraqi Police officers. This news item, which is below, received an enormous amount of coverage internationally.

We at Multi-National Corps - Iraq made it known through MNC-I Press Release Number 20061125-09 and our conversations with your reporters that neither we nor Baghdad Police had any reports of such an incident after investigating it and could find no one to corroborate the story. A couple of hours ago, we learned something else very important. We can tell you definitively that the primary source of this story, police Capt. Jamil Hussein, is not a Baghdad police officer or an MOI employee. We verified this fact with the MOI through the Coalition Police Assistance Training Team.

Also, we definitely know, as we told you several weeks ago through the MNC-I Media Relations cell, that another AP-popular IP spokesman, Lt. Maithem Abdul Razzaq, supposedly of the city’s Yarmouk police station, does not work at that police station and is also not authorized to speak on behalf of the IP. The MOI has supposedly issued a warrant for his questioning.

I know we have informed you that there exists an MOI edict that no one below the level of chief is authorized to be an Iraqi Police spokesperson. An unauthorized IP spokesperson will get fired for talking to the media. While I understand the importance of a news agency to use anonymous and unauthorized sources, it is still incumbent upon them to make sure their facts are straight. Was this information verified by anyone else? If the source providing the information is lying about his name, then he ought not to be represented as an official IP spokesperson and should be listed as an anonymous source.

Unless you have a credible source to corroborate the story of the people being burned alive, we respectfully request that AP issue a retraction, or a correction at a minimum, acknowledging that the source named in the story is not who he claimed he was. MNC-I and MNF-I are always available and willing to verify events and provide as much information as possible when asked.

Very respectfully,

Lieutenant, U.S. Navy
MNC-I Joint Operations Center
Public Affairs Officer
Source: Flopping Aces – Getting The News From The Enemy
Al-Pazeera is about right. I am convinced that moniker is going to take off. HT: To Robin at Chickenhawk Express, however this story is being covered by many bloggers.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

'Tis the Season...

For Kenny G and Karen Carpenter.

Listening to the Christmas music on the various radio station has me topped off on this decade's life's need for Kenny G. I detest his music, I detest it when they remix old songs and put his obsequious stuff (for wanting to keep this site family friendly) over the top of it. Visit this site for some Kenny G jokes, some are old but so what.

Now, Karen Carpenter the fact she is dead does not make me hold back punches. However, I have none to throw at her music unlike Kenny G's. However, unless you are listening to some station (like WOMT from Manitowoc) that specializes in 70s music the only time one hear's Karen's music is at Christmas time. I don't mind it just making an observation.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Mabuting Balita sa Filipinas! Good News from the Philippines!

Bob from Mindanao Blog reports:
It happened today, the Philippine Armed Forces (AFP) got a huge catch in the War on Terror! Remember the group of hostages that was taken by the Abu Sayyaf in June of 2001? That's the same group that included Martin and Gracia Burnham, the American Missionary couple that was held by the Abu Sayyaf. In the end, Martin was killed by his captors, while Gracia was injured, but able to return alive to the United States. At that time, another of the American Hostages, Guillermo Sobrero was beheaded by his Abu Sayyaf captors.
Source: Mindanao Blog – Philippines nabs a big catch in the War on Terror!
Bob quotes from a Philippine Daily Inquirer Article here is a distiurbing passage:
Akbar said Abbas was previously arrested but managed to escape from prison during the 2004 jail break in Basilan. He rejoined the Abu Sayyaf and was named commander of the group previously under Hamsiraji Sali, who was killed by soldiers in 2003, according to Akbar.
Source: Abu Sayyaf in American's beheading in 2001 nabbed in Basilan – Philippine Daily Inquirer.
The disturbing part is the escape. It seems the big fish always manage to get away. Some years ago some Abu Sayyaf bigwigs were in prison and they managed to get guns and take over the prison. In the end the Abu Sayyaf bigwigs took their dirt naps but escapes are quite common.
Annek Abbas being led away. Ironic he is wearing a shirt referring to beer.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Paleotarianism & LiberLeftarianism

A common caricature of Conservatives is their unconcern for others. The idea we all make decisions and we should be left to ourselves to reap the rewards or penalties those decisions accrue. Of course, this is also a strong undercurrent in libertarian thought.

I am beginning to see those undercurrents more strongly in two areas of conservative thought. Paleoconservatism and in libertarianism. However, selfishness is a strong component of those lines of thought.

I know there are rich libertarians, I wonder how popular the philosophy is among the poor? Certainly libertarianism is not absent among the poor but I have a hard time imagining it is rampant. After all, it is much easier to say I want the government and others to leave me alone when you are wealthy.

In addition when it comes to foreign policy I loathe the idea the paleocons along with the leftists may get their way before it is really decided. Yes, I am talking about retreat, waving the white flag, surrender in Iraq. The Paleos want out and are perfectly willing to betray the Iraqis who want a more democratic and liberal society.

I believe those who want to abandon our friends in Iraq will end up in Cocytus.

This applies to trade as well. The Paleos and many on the left (however in general I see the left as about as decided on trade as the right) oppose foreign trade and want to close our borders to much trade. Yes, they often decorate their positions with the ornament of fair trade. At least leftists compensate by wanting more international welfare.

However they are both wrong.

In general I see the neocons as more concerned about the liberty and welfare of others than Paleoconservatives and many on the left.

Happy Thanksgiving!

To my regular readers and those who google here, Happy Thanksgiving to you and all of your family.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Is Goodness a Machine?

Wretchard at the Belmont Club writes a blog entitled Love and Death In it he discusses what is obvious to even the most casual observer of the affair in Iraq. We go after the bad guys with Geneva Conventions, habeus corpus, and Miranda while they [i.e. those many in the MSM refuse to term terrorists] go after women, children, and others with lunch box bombs with nails, acid bombs, very public and brutal assassinations.

It is at heart a struggle between good and evil; and must begin with an understanding of what is good. Many liberal commentators mistakenly argue that "catch and release", and strict adherence to the letter of the Geneva Convention and international rules of evidence are necessary to attain the Moral High Ground; and thereby overawe the world with an admiration for America's shining moral superiority. But no one is impressed, not our friends nor our enemies. Because those pretensions to superiority based on legalisms are undermined at every turn by actual betrayals.
Source: The Belmont Club – Love and Death
In western society good and evil have become a matter of law. This view is also extremely mechanistic. The law must work like a machine no consideration on the circumstances, no understanding of what is behind a given act. So, since a soldier is constrained by some inane rule put forth years ago to govern warfare between nations even though there is absolutely no expectation held by the other side. Joe kills a terrorist before it becomes obvious to Code Pink the terrorist is about to shoot at him and he is investigated and hounded. Ali blows up a mosque full of Worshipping Shias or a bus full of school children and he is a "founding father". The machinery of the system can process Joe but not Ali, so to the processing factory you go Joe.

In the Third World especially, America's moral quality will be judged more by its willingness to keep its word of honor than in any self-absorbed liturgy to the gods of political correctness. Moral superiority must first of all begin with a determination not to sacrifice men who have decided to fight on the American side; because without the ability to stand by those who have risked their lives for us, no sweet words, no fastidiousness references to law will adequately substitute. Against fear we must set not Moral Superiority, but love. Fear is the lunchbox bomb; yet our love is that we should lay our lives for our friends until the lunchbox bomb is no more. Down that road of love the road to winning over terrorism lies; down that path and not the path of Judas.
Source: The Belmont Club – Love and Death
This is what bothers me the most. There are many people in Iraq who have placed much at risk to help follow through on the idea of popular government on the path to liberalism. Now, what is the proposal everyone is talking about? Abandoning them.

I leave you with a question. In Dante's Inferno what crime is rewarded with eternity in Hell's deepest and coldest pit?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Yak Yak Yak Yak

Another assassination in Lebanon, by the same Syrian thugs who have killed so many in Lebanon-and long ago were de facto invited into that country to offer "order" by the same Bakerism that has now returned. One of the great achievements of the present Bush administration was forcing Syria out of Lebanon and allowing democracy a chance there. Do we really wish to undo all that by offering protocols and concessions to those who are aiding in the killing of our soldiers in Iraq? What I like about the Bush administration is its principled resolve: as the hawkish liberals bailed, so they stayed the course; as the paleos condemned them as naifs and worse, they kept trying to push reform in the Middle East; when many of the Neocons bailed on the war they so long wanted, they still were firm. But after going through all that, would they really sit down with murderous regimes in Iran and Syria, whose intelligence operatives are daily killing reformers from Beirut to Baghdad, and who are the archetypes of all that they abhor in the Middle East? Say it ain't so.
Source: The Corner - RE: Syrian Strategy (Victor Davis Hanson)
I see little harm in talking, at least in principle. However, it would have to be done with the understanding the talk would be just – talk.

Who thinks granting concessions to Syria and Iran would really solve anything? Yes, it would create some stability (unless of course one lives in Lebanon or Israel) in the short term but would it really create long term stability? No, the talk would have to be the sort of talk Iran engages in (with the exception of how it talks about Israel which is determined and clear) talk designed to stall.

The idea is to make it look like talk is actually happening. After all we talked & negotiated with the Japanese despite their action in China. Look what that got us. Fortunately, for FDR his administration was not seriously charged with bungling talks or not talking seriously.

So sure, we can talk with Iran, Syria, North Korea, et al even Beelzebub himself, however don't be so naive to think the talks would dissuade the Syrian and Iranian crocodiles from anything they are intent on.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Madison Matters.

Back to Madison in the morning. The Empress and I spent the evening cooking, we did a stir fry with an adobo variant sauce. Adobo is a Filipino sauce consisting of soy sauce, vinegar, pepper, and garlic. Of course the exact proportions of each vary to taste and of course cooks add their own special ingredients.

Usually, my adobo is 1:2:3 soy:sherry:vinegar and I went with those proportions tonight, but instead of using white vinegar I used balsamic vinegar. What a wonderful treat it was, the smell was as sour as ever (The Empress complains the adobo I make is sour, but that's the way I am, also the sherry is non-standard), but the taste was excellent, not as sour as the smell. That was dinner and will probably serve me lunch and dinner for tomorrow.

The next cooking project was breakfast centered. We cooked buttermilk whole-wheat blueberry pancakes. We made a 2x batch from the recipe, some for myself, some for the Empress. I'll have to buy some juice and maple syrup (the real stuff gummit all) however with a Woodmans nearby that is no problem.

WCPE is playing some medieval/middle-ages music. I am trying to tear myself away and will have too soon.

I hate to wish my life away, but the end of this assignment can not come too soon. I hope one of those resumes I have out there hits paydirt.

Good night and thanks for reading.

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Pacquiao Wins!

Morales doesn't make it through the third round. Manny wins the rubber match.

FYI, I am talking about the Manny Pacquiao vs. Erik Morales super featherweight fight. Manny & Erik have fought twice before splitting the bouts and this was the third fight, so Manny wins his rubber match (didn't I just say that?) now onto bigger and better things!

Hip Hypocrisy.

This reminds me of Peter Schweizer's excellent book, Do As I Say, Not As I Do. Schweizer's book contains highly entertaining recitations of mind-boggling liberal hypocrisy. (In fact, now that Nancy Pelosi is Speaker of the House, we should dust off his profile of her.) But beyond mocking liberals, Schweizer makes a more profound point: when conservatives act in a hypocritical manner, violating their own principles, they go astray and screw up their lives. When iberals, on the other hand, act hypocritically, they usually are also acting reasonably. They find their principles hard to follow in their own lives in part because their principles are wrong.
Source: Powerline blog – HYPOCRISY, YES, BUT WITH A POINT (John)
Yes, the Powerline Blog is addressing John Edward's Wal-Mart purchase. What's the problem John? It must be great to be loaded to not have to worry about being thrifty, huh? Anyway, what happened may reak of hypocrisy or you may blame some young member of your staff, but most people really don't care. After all, who is hurt? Your life & career are not over because of this are they? In fact, you did what most of your constituents do on a daily basis purchase items at Wal Mart.


It is a fact many of us do not perform enough charity. Some, just think charity is for saps looking for some "warm fuzzies", others do not seem to have the time, the money, the energy etc, others think the government should do it or there oughta be a law. I am hoping to motivate all categories of charity dodgers to do their part, but this blog is about those in the last group, that is the those who want to outsource their charitable works.

Shortly after (IIRC) the 2004 election a map was put out on charitable giving and the map seemed to correlate charitable giving with the red areas of the nation, that is those who vote Republican or wit those who are at least conservative. Now this:
The book's [Who Really Cares: The Surprising Truth About Compassionate Conservatism] basic findings are that conservatives who practice religion, live in traditional nuclear families and reject the notion that the government should engage in income redistribution are the most generous Americans, by any measure.

Conversely, secular liberals who believe fervently in government entitlement programs give far less to charity. They want everyone's tax dollars to support charitable causes and are reluctant to write checks to those causes, even when governments don't provide them with enough money.

Such an attitude, he [Arthur C. Brooks] writes, not only shortchanges the nonprofits but also diminishes the positive fallout of giving, including personal health, wealth and happiness for the donor and overall economic growth. All of this, he said, he backs up with statistical analysis.

"These are not the sort of conclusions I ever thought I would reach when I started looking at charitable giving in graduate school, 10 years ago," he writes in the introduction. "I have to admit I probably would have hated what I have to say in this book."

Still, he says it forcefully, pointing out that liberals give less than conservatives in every way imaginable, including volunteer hours and donated blood. [emphasis added]
Source: BeliefNet – Philanthropy Expert: Conservatives Are More Generous (By Frank Brieaddy)
Read the whole story. Mr. Brooks tries to not see what his research shows but in the end can not but to.

Of course, Mr. Brooks is making a study and trying to come up with generalizations. We all know leftists/liberals who are truly generous and giving, but I have seen first hand many leftists/liberals who hold the attitude they should not perform acts of charity because they believe the government should do it. We also know of conservatives who can't be bothered with giving.

I do not believe the government should do it. Is the government capable? A government that performs too much charity is sooner or later going to start curtailing our liberties (we see it happening already, since the government provides much medical assistance it now decides to pass laws and regulations to keep medical costs low). No people, Cain asked God Am I my brother's keeper? not My government is my brother's keeper, as the bureau of brother monitoring.

Get up and look for a cause greater than yourself, make it a family affair! When you are being buried do you want your mourners to say He so loved American Idol or She so charitable and willing to help others, we lost a good person.?

BTW, I tip my hat to the Drudge Report for alerting me to the story.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

C is For Congress

C is for corruption. On the whole I believe both Democrats and Republicans congressmen are honest and hardworking wanting to the best they can and trying to do what they believe best for their constituents.

Of course some of members of congress are corrupt. The amount of money available to them are huge and we are all human.

Still, Nancy Pelosi's promise of the cleanest congress ever, smacks as arrogance. Especially when she pushed the candidacy to majority leader of one investigated in the Abscam investigation. Also, how about Alcee Hastings being tapped for leading the House Intelligence committee? Of course there is the case of William Jefferson (D-Louisiana).


I had a blog in mind last night, but the hotel notwork was not working. All inspiration (beyond a Tommy Thomposon blog on the BBA) has left me. I guess time to prepare for fly-away Friday.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

The Trumpet Shall Sound

A tribute to those who have fallen in battle for the sake of liberty. This picture is from the Pacific War Memorial on Corregidor Island in the Philippines.

...the trump shall blow, and the dead shall rise incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

Also, to we salute those who survived conflict for liberty! You are not forgotten.

Those who fight for liberty of our nation and the liberty of others both who live now and in the future we do not forget you, we pray for your safety and the successful accomplishment of your noble mission.

Does Anyone Know...

Where the love of God goes when the waves turn the minutes into hours? Yesterday in 1975 the Edmund Fitzgeral sunk with all hands. If God's love was not with them then, I pray it is with them now.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Give it Up!

What is the difference between Republicans and Democrats? Come one Kathy, you lost grow up admit it and start planning your next race for Governor. At least with a run for Governor you have relevant experience!

I tell you. George Allen in a much more important race and one every bit as close (if not closer) concedes. Dems whine and complain.

The voting machines are just like recounts. They are only correct when they favor Democrats.

To Dr. Kagen.

Congratulations on your win. I was by your campaign office early last summer and what I saw scared the dickens out of me. Turns out my fears were well founded.

You are soon to be my represntative. However, you do not represent my views and I firmly and sincerely beleive when the voters of the 8th District see your votes and your beliefs in action they will come to regret their vote. I give you two years in office.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

More Blogger Beer Fodder.

Is what Kagen's victory means.
"Let's stop pointing fingers and really start to join hands and begin to solve our problems," Kagen said.
"The hocus-pocus days of the current presidency where he will spin the rhetoric and try to deceive us have come to an end." Kagen said. "No more slogans until we get the job done at the gas pumps, until we reverse global warming, until we are sure everyone has a living wage. We must find a way to guarantee access to affordable health care for everyone."
Source: JS Online - Kagen wins; "There's a doctor in the House"
Well, I have more material to fisk with Kagen in office now.

I love this speech, start off by stating "Let's stop pointing fingers and really start to join hands..." then go off and start ripping the other side, which is what he does by saying "The hocus-pocus days of the current presidency where he will spin the rhetoric and try to deceive us have come to an end." Real uniting.


Terrorist Eyes Are Smiling.

How can it be otherwise? After all, sometimes it is very hard to distinguish the talking points of Osama Bin Laden from this nation's left.

Oh well, some random and quick thoughts.

I wonder what the over/under on the number of days until the Dems bring impeachment charges against President Bush. I guess it depends on the Senate, which still isn't decided.

Our next Governor is Barbara Lawton, I can not believe Doyle, with this ethical problems will last four years. The attorney generalship of WI went to JB Van Hollen (by a sliver) and Jim Doyle's puppet lost. Even though Peg and Doyle didn't get along they knew they had to work together.

Speaking of which, it boggles my mind a guy with so many ethical scandals and who clearly abused the Government to advance his political career won so easily. That is, Governor Doyle who gets four more years to keep businesses out of Wisconsin (except for the elite stem cell research facilities for the Madison area).

Steve Kagen. I don't think he will last long in the job. Frank Krueger, at least Bruce Chudacoff is a longtime friend of Mr. Kagen's what's your excuse? I hope you become persona non grata within the Outagamie County Republican Party.

Congratulations to Gary Tauchen on winning his race to represent Wisconsin's sixth assembly.

Does anyone think we will hear stories about how Diebold fixed the election?

The left will gloat and the right will
...mope. You drink. You swear a bit.

And then, after a little while, you get back up on the horse and try again.
Source: TKS - Closing thoughts
However, it will be nothing like the left. The left for years complained and whined about stolen elections. Well, the nation went left and us conservatives must congratulate them work with them when possible (we'll see, offer a hand first and take it from there), after all the left in America is not the enemy (I know, some will say they are and some will point to my comment on top). Conservatives have no more right to power than the left does and this separates the two of us. As I said on election eve:
What? What about tomorrow's elections? Whatever, my vote is in and I am not working polls or doing dialin' for votes. I'll leave work early, go home hug my beautiful wife, have dinner, and go to Gary Tauchen's victory party [and a victory party it was]. Wake up Wednesday morning and no matter what happens I am not partying or tearing my clothes, rolling in ashes, and donning sack cloth. Can the leftoids say the same thing? Of course, I will be disappointed if the GOP loses the house, the senate, the governorship, etc but I don't worship at the altar of leftist [or right] government. God's plans transcend Elephant and @$$.[emphasis added]
Source: Blogger Beer - Twas the Night Before Election Day.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Christmas Music!

Already on the radio, it seems like full blast too! I can't say I really mind.

What you were expecting commentary & profundity on something else? If you want that then go to TKS Blog on National Review Online. Mr. Geraghty has excellent sources who were correct in 2004 even during the dark hours of the exit-polling misinformation.

Monday, November 06, 2006

If You Want This...

I have a leftist friend who dreams just like Hassan Nasrallah, if his ideas get voted into office the helicopters will be a self fulfilling prophecy.

Anyway more Democrat talking points (does it sound any different from those given seats of honor at Democrat Conventions?):

Hassan Nasrallah: We consider the resistance in Iraq, or in any occupied country - and there is no doubt that Iraq is an occupied country – to be legitimate resistance, which is justified and appropriate. This is the appropriate course, which may lead to the liberation of Iraq, and we support and endorse this resistance. But we definitely distinguish between military operations that target the occupation forces and the operations, which we term "criminal," that target innocent Iraqi people, and that shed blood under illegitimate slogans.


When I talk about an [American] failure, I'm not saying that the Americans' plan for the region has collapsed, and that they are packing up their things and leaving, like what happened in the final days in Vietnam. But I would like to tell you clearly... I am one of those people who see a very clear picture. In our childhood... When we were young boys... I cannot forget the sight of the American forces leaving Vietnam in helicopters, which carried their officers and soldiers. Some Vietnamese, who had fought alongside the Americans, tried to climb into these helicopters, but the [Americans] threw them to the ground, abandoned them, and left. This is the sight I anticipate in our region, but I am not saying it will happen in months. [emphasis added, is this what JFK promised? To abandon any friend?] It will take years. The Americans will gather their belongings and leave this region - the entire region. They have no future whatsoever in our region. They will leave the Middle East, and the Arab and Islamic worlds, like they left Vietnam. I advise all those who place their trust in the Americans to learn the lesson of Vietnam, and to learn the lesson of the South Lebanese Army with the Israelis, and to know that when the Americans lose this war – and lose it they will, Allah willing - they will abandon them to their fate, just like they did to all those who placed their trust in them throughout history. [emphasis added, like Poland, like France, like the Philippines?]


When I spoke at the rally on Friday, and said we have 20,000 missiles, they began saying: "There is chaos on the borders, and they can bring missiles in." This is not true. When I said that the resistance had more than 13,000 missiles, it, in fact, had more than 33,000 missiles. Now, when I talk about 20,000... For six years, we were preparing... or rather, anticipating a war some day - a vicious, large-scale, and dangerous war, knowing that the Israeli enemy would not keep silent after its defeat in 2000, and that the Israeli enemy would never accept an honorable, loyal, and serious Arab Lebanese resistance force as its neighbor in Lebanon. It was planning a war some day, and we were prepared for it. Now, we still possess what we had in the past. We were ready to fight for a long period of time, and we took into consideration the possibility of a siege by land, sea, and air.
Source: Little Green Footballs - Hizballah Leader: "Like They Left Vietnam"

Twas The Night Before Election Day.

And my most important observations are centered on beer and on woman in Al-Ain who is lamenting the march of time.

What? What about tomorrow's elections? Whatever, my vote is in and I am not working polls or doing dialin' for votes. I'll leave work early go home hug my beautiful wife have dinner and go to Gary Tauchen's victory party. Wake up Wednesday morning and no matter what happens I am not partying or tearing my clothes, rolling in ashes, and donning sack cloth. Can the leftoids say the same thing? Of course, I will be disappointed if the GOP loses the house, the senate, the governorship, etc but I don't worship at the altar of leftist government. God's plans transcend Elephant and @$$.

IPA. India Pale Ale. What a wonderful beer, dub light its not and I forget that. I purchased a six pack tonight and thought "its just a six pack". Well, a six pack of good IPA is an 18er of dub light and a 12er of most other standard lager beers (i.e. your standard American, Canadian, or Australian beer, huh? Don't try to tell me the standard Canadian or Aussie beer is different than an American standard beer).

I was reading Am I Really This Crazy and Just a Mom says:
Somewhere along the way, I transformed from this bean pole giggly kid into the mom I am today - complete with stretch marks, grey hair and bags under my eyes. I cook every day, I clean and I spend my evenings at home talking about how tired I am. Meanwhile, she has morphed into this sex kitten complete with paid for boobs, a flat stomach and a boy friend. The friends in her photos are all young, thin ladies with colorful drinks in their hands, smiles on their faces and perfect eyeliner. I feel left out. I feel deserted and tossed aside. It is not her fault - not at all. I don't feel like she has done anything TO me; It just hit me that I am no longer 19 years old, you know? I don't remember life before kids. I don't remember what it feels like to know I am sexy or to know that I am wanted. When did this happen and why didn't I get the damn memo?
Source: Am I Really This Crazy - Becoming not me
Glory Be to The Father, The Son, The Holy Spirt; as it was in the beginning is as now and ever shall be world without end amen. Who reading this has not had similar thoughts? Come on, you know what I mean!

Isn't this what growing up is all about?
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
Source: Bible Gateway - I Corinthians 13:11-12

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Education, Smarts, and Soldiering.

A commentator the other day left a good comment. Normally, this fellow and myself disagree strongly but not this time. However their is disagreement.

Kerry is a d-bag, but I don't think he was calling anybody and idiot.
Source: Blogger Beer Commentary by Jesusisjustalrightwithme
I agree with the first statement, but the last comment. Early on I gave Senator Kerry the benefit of the doubt
I feel a certain call to speak out on this, as a person at least titularly involved in the creation and delivery of jokes. If you say something to me, and I look hurt, and you say, "Just kidding," that does not make what you said a joke. It has to be a joke in the first place. And Kerry's line is very clearly, both in its wording and in its delivery, not a joke. It's a warning. He's talking to students. He says it with an even graver-than-usual, flatter-than-usual tone, and he's telling them what can happen to them if they don't study hard. Is he warning them that they might someday be President and make decisions leading to a quagmire in Iraq? Of course not. You can get stuck in Iraq. Personally.

Beyond that, if the line were, as claimed, a joke about the President, it would theoretically need to contain at least some tiny reference to the President. I could rewrite it a dozen ways to make it a joke, though never a good one — "You can stay in school and study hard and do well, or you can coast through school like our President and end up stuck in Iraq." But that's not even close to what Kerry said.

Also, I think those who defend the idea that he meant the President are misreading the line "you get stuck in Iraq." It's a subtle matter of inflection, but I don't believe he is saying "stuck" in the sense of "mired." I believe he is saying "stuck" as "unfortunately placed" as in "I got stuck in the worst hotel room." Again, the President could not be placed in Iraq. Soldiers can.
Source: Kerry's "Joke" Dissected The Corner Warren Bell
Viewing the video supports Warren's contentions. After all, as I said before its not like there is no history here.

The Commentator goes on to raise some important distinctions about intelligence and education.
I agree. However, I have one additional criticism. Both Kerry and the people condmning [sic] him have to stop equating "not doing well in school" with "being an idiot." My guess is that more of our soldiers were in the middle or bottom of their high school classes than were at the top. That does not make them idiots.
Source: Blogger Beer Commentary by Jesusisjustalrightwithme
I agree with the first comments but question the later comments. I know PhD.s who are flipping idiots and high school dropouts who are very smart. I am not trying to be "deep" or contradictory just the facts. In fact, most of us know people in both of those categories, nothing earthshaking. Stanley Kurtz at National Review has some interesting comments about intelligence, education, and life outlooks:
Whatever he meant by them, John Kerry’s remarks have struck a nerve. But why? Well, for a lot of reasons. Of course we think of anti-war activist John Kerry’s long-standing tensions with his fellow Vietnam Vets. Then there’s the insulting stereotype of the dumb soldier. But to understand the tensions thrown up by Kerry’s remarks, we also need to have a look at the reverse of the medal: not the “soldiers are dumb” theme, but the notion that smart people don’t become soldiers and don’t support wars. No matter who he meant the dumb folks were, the idea that smart college kids become dovish Dems is a powerful sub-text in Kerry’s remarks.

A big part of what’s going on here is the taken-for-granted sense that young people who correctly absorb the lessons taught on America’s college campuses must be anti-war. More deeply, there’s a conflict between what author David Lebedoff calls “The New Elite” and “The Left Behinds.” According to Lebedoff, The New Elite who populate Blue America aren’t necessarily smarter than Red State “Left Behinds,” but they nonetheless build their identities around a belief in their own intelligence and education. The contrast between hard working folks who rise up through higher education to be smarties against war, and poor dumb schlubs who become soldiers because they aren’t smart enough to cut it in college, is an almost perfect instantiation of Lebedoff’s distinction between The New Elite and The Left Behinds.

I reviewed Lebedoff’s book, The Uncivil War: How a New Elite is Destroying Our Democracy, for the October 11, 2004 issue of NRODT. Here’s an excerpt from that review. (Substitute the example of a soldier for the lawyer named Edward, and you will see John Kerry’s comments come to life.):

...Lebedoff believes that our political and cultural struggles are being driven by a conflict between two groups, "The New Elite" and "The Left Behinds." Let's have a look at a couple of representatives of these competing social camps.

Growing up in Allentown, Pa., Charlene had felt a bit ashamed of her hand-me-down clothes and less-than-cultured parents. Yet this bright girl blossomed in college, proud to be accepted as an equal by a circle of friends who made concerts, foreign films, and lectures their mainstay. On getting her doctorate in microbiology, Charlene married a physicist and moved to Seattle. Charlene and her neighbors are culturally sophisticated and fairly well off. They feel they've earned their position in life by dint of talent and intelligence. Having risen above their backgrounds, they're suspicious of tradition and impatient with those who don't see things their way. After all, Charlene and her neighbors have proven themselves to be among the brightest and most knowledgeable of citizens; they are members of "The New Elite."

Edward grew up in Mankato, Minn., a prosperous town of 30,000. His IQ is actually higher than Charlene's, yet he doesn't see his intelligence as the key to his place in life. Edward's father, like his father before him, was a respected lawyer and leader in Mankato. Edward values his family's place in the town, and returned to Mankato to practice law. After an indifferent performance in college, Edward had applied himself and done quite well in law school. Yet he knew that, either way, a desk would be waiting for him at the family firm. Edward sees himself as a leader in Mankato, heir to the standards of his profession, and an admirer of the American way of life. Although a prominent citizen and financially well off, Edward is part of what Lebedoff calls "The Left Behinds."

What sets these portraits apart from a typical contrast between "blue" and "red" America is Lebedoff's focus on intelligence. Edward may be smart, but he doesn't define himself by his intellectual accomplishments; yet Charlene and her neighbors in Seattle became professionals by virtue of their grades and SAT scores. What's more, they know it. Deep down, these sophisticates take their intelligence and success as proof that their anti-traditionalist world-view is right—and that those who see things differently are both ignorant and mistaken.

This, says Lebedoff, is the downside of our meritocracy. A laudable democratic desire to ensure equality of opportunity prompted us to make tests like the SAT a decisive determinant of success; an unintended consequence of this change has been to create an elite that is suspicious of democracy itself. Democracy depends on majority rule, but—without quite admitting it—our elites have lost faith in the wisdom of the majority. They think they're smart enough to decide what's right for all of us. These elites don't realize that most political decisions depend on values, not intelligence. Their unshakable faith in their own intelligence leads them to mistake their own imperfect preferences for the truth.

The tension between the New Elites and the Left Behinds is everywhere in our politics, says Lebedoff.”
Source: Dovish Smarties - The Corner Stanley Kurtz
Faith again, faith in what? Funny how faith and doubt can reside in the same mind as they do.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

An Apology?

Overheard in a sentencing hearing, the convicted murders are pleading for clemency.

Your honor, I am sorry John Doe was in the path of my bullet.

Another one:
Your honor, I am sorry Jane Doe's carotid artery was in the path of my knife.

Sound familiar?