Saturday, October 13, 2007
I was wandering around out in my garage this morning basically doing nothing but enjoying the cool weather when I found this little lady "hanging out" near the floor by my water heater.
Here...take a peek at "Her Majesty".
She ran away after I disturbed her with my camera, so I didn't get the chance to STOMP HER FLAT before she bites Pat or Missy the Turbo Pup.
Don't worry, I'm watching....Stay tuned for new developments...
As I've written here time and time again, the headline and content following many news stories appears to me to be some kind of accidental miss-match of ideas and facts.
Unfortunately these days the ideas outnumber the facts something like two to one in most of what I read in the
Today's case in point, this ASSociated Press story about a speech given yesterday by retired Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez.
Ex-general: Iraq a 'nightmare' for US
By STEVEN KOMAROW,
Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 11 minutes ago
ARLINGTON, Va. - The U.S. mission in Iraq is a "nightmare with no end in sight" because of political misjudgments after the fall of Saddam Hussein that continue today, a former chief of U.S.-led forces said Friday.
Retired Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, who commanded coalition troops for a year beginning June 2003, cast a wide net of blame for both political and military shortcomings in Iraq that helped open the way for the insurgency — such as disbanding the Saddam-era military and failing to cement ties with tribal leaders and quickly establish civilian government after Saddam was toppled.
He called current strategies — including the deployment of 30,000 additional forces earlier this year — a "desperate attempt" to make up for years of misguided policies in Iraq.
"There is no question that America is living a nightmare with no end in sight," Sanchez told a group of journalists covering military affairs.
Sanchez avoided singling out at any specific official. But he did criticize the State Department, the National Security Council, Congress and the senior military leadership during what appeared to be a broad indictment of White House policies and a lack of leadership to oppose them.
The Washington Post leads with "Ex Commander In Iraq Faults War Strategy.
The New Your Times jumps in with "Former Top General In Iraq Faults Bush Administration."
The Denver Post chimes in with "Former US Chief: Iraq Mission "A Nightmare""
This horrible disease of the mind and keyboard has predictably spread overseas, as The Sidney Morning Herald says US "Leadership Dooms Iraq Strategy."
The BBC goes further over the edge with "US General Damns Iraq Nightmare."
Now that you seen the headlines and read some of the news articles, I want you to take a look at what General Sanchez actually said in what was nearly the first half of his address to the Military Reporters and Editors Luncheon:
MILITARY REPORTERS AND EDITORS LUNCHEON ADDRESS WASHINGTON D.C.
LTG (RET) RICARDO S. SANCHEZ
12 OCTOBER 2007
MILITARY REPORTERS AND EDITORS ADDRESS WASHINGTON D.C.
12 OCTOBER 2007
GOOD AFTERNOON LADIES AND GENTLEMEN
SOME OF YOU MAY NOT BELIEVE THIS BUT I AM GLAD TO BE HERE. WHEN SIG ASKED ME IF I WOULD CONSIDER ADDRESSING YOU THERE WAS NO DOUBT THAT I SHOULD COME INTO THE LION'S DEN. THIS WAS IMPORTANT BECAUSE I HAVE FIRMLY BELIEVED SINCE DESERT SHIELD THAT IT IS NECESSARY FOR THE STRENGTH OF OUR DEMOCRACY THAT THE MILITARY AND THE PRESS CORPS MAINTAIN A STRONG, MUTUALLY RESPECTFUL AND ENABLING RELATIONSHIP. THIS CONTINUES TO BE PROBLEMATIC FOR OUR COUNTRY, ESPECIALLY DURING TIMES OF WAR. ONE OF THE GREATEST MILITARY CORRESPONDENTS OF OUR TIME, JOE GALLOWAY, MADE ME A BELIEVER WHEN HE JOINED THE 24TH INFANTRY DIVISION DURING DESERT STORM.
TODAY, I WILL ATTEMPT TO DO TWO THINGS - FIRST I WILL GIVE YOU MY ASSESSMENT OF THE MILITARY AND PRESS RELATIONSHIP AND THEN I WILL PROVIDE YOU SOME THOUGHTS ON THE CURRENT STATE OF OUR WAR EFFORT. AS ALL OF YOU KNOW I HAVE A WIDE RANGE OF RELATIONSHIPS AND EXPERIENCES WITH OUR NATIONS MILITARY WRITERS AND EDITORS. THERE ARE SOME IN YOUR RANKS WHO I CONSIDER TO BE THE EPITOME OF JOURNALISTIC PROFESSIONALISM - JOE GALLOWAY, THOM SHANKER, SIG CHRISTENSEN, AND JOHN BURNS IMMEDIATELY COME TO MIND. THEY EXEMPLIFY WHAT AMERICA SHOULD DEMAND OF OUR JOURNALISTS - TOUGH REPORTING THAT RELIES UPON INTEGRITY, OBJECTIVITY AND FAIRNESS TO GIVE ACCURATE AND THOROUGH ACCOUNTS THAT STRENGTHEN OUR FREEDOM OF THE PRESS AND IN TURN OUR DEMOCRACY. ON THE OTHER HAND, UNFORTUNATELY, I HAVE ISSUED ULTIMATUMS TO SOME OF YOU FOR UNSCRUPULOUS REPORTING THAT WAS SOLELY FOCUSED ON SUPPORTING YOUR AGENDA AND PRECONCIEVED NOTIONS OF WHAT OUR MILITARY HAD DONE. I ALSO REFUSED TO TALK TO THE EUROPEAN STARS AND STRIPES FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS OF MY COMMAND IN GERMANY FOR THEIR EXTREME BIAS AND SINGLE MINDED FOCUS ON ABU GHARAIB.
LET ME REVIEW SOME OF THE DESCRIPTIVE PHRASES THAT HAVE BEEN USED BY SOME OF YOU THAT HAVE MADE MY PERSONAL INTERFACES WITH THE PRESS CORPS DIFFICULT:
"DICTATORIAL AND SOMEWHAT DENSE",
"NOT A STRATEGIC THOUGHT",
"DOES NOT GET IT" AND
THE MOST INEXPERIENCED LTG.
IN SOME CASES I HAVE NEVER EVEN MET YOU, YET YOU FEEL QUALIFIED TO MAKE CHARACTER JUDGMENTS THAT ARE COMMUNICATED TO THE WORLD. MY EXPERIENCE IS NOT UNIQUE AND WE CAN FIND OTHER EXAMPLES SUCH AS THE TREATMENT OF SECRETARY BROWN DURING KATRINA. THIS IS THE WORST DISPLAY OF JOURNALISM IMAGINABLE BY THOSE OF US THAT ARE BOUND BY A STRICT VALUE SYSTEM OF SELFLESS SERVICE, HONOR AND INTEGRITY. ALMOST INVARIABLY, MY PERCEPTION IS THAT THE SENSATIONALISTIC VALUE OF THESE ASSESSMENTS IS WHAT PROVIDED THE EDGE THAT YOU SEEK FOR SELF AGRANDIZEMENT OR TO ADVANCE YOUR INDIVIDUAL QUEST FOR GETTING ON THE FRONT PAGE WITH YOUR STORIES! AS I UNDERSTAND IT, YOUR MEASURE OF WORTH IS HOW MANY FRONT PAGE STORIES YOU HAVE WRITTEN AND UNFORTUNATELY SOME OF YOU WILL COMPROMISE YOUR INTEGRITY AND DISPLAY QUESTIONABLE ETHICS AS YOU SEEK TO KEEP AMERICA INFORMED. THIS IS MUCH LIKE THE INTELLIGENCE ANALYSTS WHOSE EFFECTIVENESS WAS MEASURED BY THE NUMBER OF INTELLIGENCE REPORTS HE PRODUCED. FOR SOME, IT SEEMS THAT AS LONG AS YOU GET A FRONT PAGE STORY THERE IS LITTLE OR NO REGARD FOR THE "COLLATERAL DAMAGE" YOU WILL CAUSE. PERSONAL REPUTATIONS HAVE NO VALUE AND YOU REPORT WITH TOTAL IMPUNITY AND ARE RARELY HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR UNETHICAL CONDUCT.
GIVEN THE NEAR INSTANTANEOUS ABILITY TO REPORT ACTIONS ON THE GROUND, THE RESPONSIBILITY TO ACCURATELY AND TRUTHFULLY REPORT TAKES ON AN UNPRECEDENTED IMPORTANCE. THE SPECULATIVE AND OFTEN UNINFORMED INITIAL REPORTING THAT CHARACTERIZES OUR MEDIA APPEARS TO BE RAPIDLY BECOMING THE STANDARD OF THE INDUSTRY. AN ARAB PROVERB STATES - "Four things come not back: the spoken word, the spent arrow, the past, the neglected opportunity."
ONCE REPORTED, YOUR ASSESSMENTS BECOME CONVENTIONAL WISDOM AND NEARLY IMPOSSIBLE TO CHANGE. OTHER MAJOR CHALLENGES ARE YOUR WILLINGNESS TO BE MANIPULATED BY "HIGH LEVEL OFFICIALS" WHO LEAK STORIES AND BY LAWYERS WHO USE HYPERBOLE TO STRENGHTEN THEIR ARGUMENTS. YOUR UNWILLINGNESS TO ACCURATELY AND PROMINENTLY CORRECT YOUR MISTAKES AND YOUR AGENDA DRIVEN BIASES CONTRIBUTE TO THIS CORROSIVE ENVIRONMENT. ALL OF THESE CHALLENGES COMBINED CREATE A MEDIA ENVIRONMENT THAT DOES A TREMENDOUS DISSERVICE TO AMERICA. OVER THE COURSE OF THIS WAR TACTICALLY INSIGNIFICANT EVENTS HAVE BECOME STRATEGIC DEFEATS FOR AMERICA BECAUSE OF THE TREMENDOUS POWER AND IMPACT OF THE MEDIA AND BY EXTENSION YOU THE JOURNALIST. IN MANY CASES THE MEDIA HAS UNJUSTLY DESTROYED THE INDIVIDUAL REPUTATIONS AND CAREERS OF THOSE INVOLVED. WE REALIZE THAT BECAUSE OF THE NEAR REAL TIME REPORTING ENVIRONMENT THAT YOU FACE IT IS DIFFICULT TO REPORT ACCURATELY. IN MY BUSINESS ONE OF OUR FUNDAMENTAL TRUTHS IS THAT "THE FIRST REPORT IS ALWAYS WRONG." UNFORTUNATELY, IN YOUR BUSINESS "THE FIRST REPORT" GIVES AMERICANS WHO RELY ON THE SNIPPETS OF CNN, IF YOU WILL, THEIR "TRUTHS" AND PERSPECTIVES ON AN ISSUE. AS A COROLLARY TO THIS DEADLINE DRIVEN NEED TO PUBLISH "INITIAL IMPRESSIONS OR OBSERVATIONS" VERSUS OBJECTIVE FACTS THERE IS AN ADDITIONAL CHALLENGE FOR US WHO ARE THE SUBJECT OF YOUR REPORTING. WHEN YOU ASSUME THAT YOU ARE CORRECT AND ON THE MORAL HIGH GROUND ON A STORY BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT RESPOND TO QUESTIONS YOU PROVIDED IS THE ULTIMATE ARROGANCE AND DISTORTION OF ETHICS. ONE OF YOUR HIGHLY REPECTED FELLOW JOURNALISTS ONCE TOLD ME THAT THERE ARE SOME AMONGST YOU WHO "FEED FROM A PIG'S TROUGH." IF THAT IS WHO I AM DEALING WITH THEN I WILL NEVER RESPOND OTHERWISE WE WILL BOTH GET DIRTY AND THE PIG WILL LOVE IT. THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT YOUR STORY IS ACCURATE.
I DO NOT BELIEVE THAT THIS IS WHAT OUR FOREFATHERS INTENDED. THE CODE OF ETHICS FOR THE SOCIETY OF PROFESSIONAL JOURNALISTS STATES:
...PUBLIC ENLIGHTENMENT IS THE FORERUNNER OF JUSTICE AND THE FOUNDATION OF DEMOCRACY. THE DUTY OF THE JOURNALIST IS TO FURTHER THOSE ENDS BY SEEKING TRUTH AND PROVIDING A FAIR AND COMPREHENSIVE ACCOUNT OF EVENTS AND ISSUES. CONSCIENTIOUS JOURNALISTS FROM ALL MEDIA AND SPECIALTIES STRIVE TO SERVE THE PUBLIC WITH THOROUGHNESS AND HONESTY. PROFESSIONAL INTEGRITY IS THE CORNERSTONE OF A JOURNALIST'S CREDIBILITY
THE BASIC ETHICS OF A JOURNALIST THAT CALLS FOR:
1. SEEKING TRUTH,
2. PROVIDING FAIR AND COMPREHENSIVE ACCOUNT OF EVENTS AND ISSUES
3. THOROUGHNESS AND HONESTY
ALL ARE VICTIMS OF THE MASSIVE AGENDA DRIVEN COMPETITION FOR ECONOMIC OR POLITICAL SUPREMACY. THE DEATH KNELL OF YOUR ETHICS HAS BEEN ENABLED BY YOUR PARENT ORGANIZATIONS WHO HAVE CHOSEN TO ALIGN THEMSELVES WITH POLITICAL AGENDAS. WHAT IS CLEAR TO ME IS THAT YOU ARE PERPETUATING THE CORROSIVE PARTISAN POLITICS THAT IS DESTROYING OUR COUNTRY AND KILLING OUR SERVICEMEMBERS WHO ARE AT WAR.
MY ASSESSMENT IS THAT YOUR PROFESSION, TO SOME EXTENT, HAS STRAYED FROM THESE ETHICAL STANDARDS AND ALLOWED EXTERNAL AGENDAS TO MANIPULATE WHAT THE AMERICAN PUBLIC SEES ON TV, WHAT THEY READ IN OUR NEWSPAPERS AND WHAT THEY SEE ON THE WEB. FOR SOME OF YOU, JUST LIKE SOME OF OUR POLITICIANS, THE TRUTH IS OF LITTLE TO NO VALUE IF IT DOES NOT FIT YOUR OWN PRECONCIEVED NOTIONS, BIASES AND AGENDAS.
IT IS ASTOUNDING TO ME WHEN I HEAR THE VEHEMENT DISAGREEMENT WITH THE MILITARY'S FORAYS INTO INFORMATION OPERATIONS THAT SEEK TO DISSEMINATE THE TRUTH AND INFORM THE IRAQI PEOPLE IN ORDER TO COUNTER OUR ENEMY'S BLATANT PROPAGANDA. AS I ASSESS VARIOUS MEDIA ENTITIES, SOME ARE UNQUESTIONABLY ENGAGED IN POLITICAL PROPAGANDA THAT IS UNCONTROLLED. THERE IS NO QUESTION IN MY MIND THAT THE STRENGTH OUR DEMOCRACY AND OUR FREEDOMS REMAIN LINKED TO YOUR ABILITY TO EXERCISE FREEDOM OF THE PRESS - I ADAMANTLY SUPPORT THIS BASIC FOUNDATION OF OUR DEMOCRACY AND COMPLETELY SUPPORTED THE EMBEDDING OF MEDIA INTO OUR FORMATIONS UP UNTIL MY LAST DAY IN UNIFORM. THE ISSUE IS ONE OF MAINTAINING PROFESSIONAL ETHICS AND STANDARDS FROM WITHIN YOUR INSTITUTION. MILITARY LEADERS MUST ACCEPT THAT THESE INJUSTICES WILL HAPPEN AND WHETHER THEY LIKE WHAT YOU PRINT OR NOT THEY MUST DEAL WITH YOU AND ENABLE YOU, IF YOU ARE AN ETHICAL JOURNALIST.
FINALLY, I WILL LEAVE THIS SUBJECT WITH A QUESTION THAT WE MUST ASK OURSELVES--WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR MAINTAINING THE ETHICAL STANDARDS OF THE PROFESSION IN ORDER TO ENSURE THAT OUR DEMOCRACY DOES NOT CONTINUE TO BE THREATENED BY THIS DANGEROUS SHIFT AWAY FROM YOUR SACRED DUTY OF PUBLIC ENLIGHTENMENT?
LET ME NOW TRANSITION TO OUR CURRENT NATIONAL SECURITY CONDITION.
Having read all of that, does anybody but me notice anything missing in the news stories?
ALL OF THE NEWS STORIES?
It seems to me that General Sanchez sorta ripped the media a new asshole over their propensity to not cover news stories accurately--particularly when the war is the subject. Where is that little fact mentioned in any of the major news outlets coverage of his address?
So what did they (the media) do after his scolding about bias?
THEY REFUSED TO REPORT ANYTHING HE SAID ABOUT THE QUALITY OF THEIR REPORTING.
Out of the 3,436 words he spoke, he spent 1,381 of them lambasting the media and the media didn't bother to tell you and I about it.
And he never once mentioned Bush or Cheney by name in his discussion, although he did give the Congress and the State Department a good dose of derision.
Where was that little tidbit in the news reports?
If I, your lovely and talented blogger hadn't bothered to link you to the website and paste the text of the speech here on my page, what would you have thought about the event?
Yeah, I thought so...
I'm so sick of this crap, aren't you?
Friday, October 12, 2007
FOX news just told me THIS.
It reminds me of 2002 when they gave the same recognition to Jummah Carter.
Paraphrasing the words of Dorthy in the Wizard of Oz: "Communists and Socialists and Perverts..OH MY..Communists and Socialists and Fascists..OH MY!!
Well, fall has finally arrived here on the Georgia coast--it's 57 degrees F outside right now at slightly past 4 AM in the morning.
The change of seasons makes me sad in a way because we really don't get fall foliage changes to enjoy like the rest of the planet, but then again I know that we're only facing temperatures down into the upper 20's a couple of nights over the next four months before beach and pool weather returns.
I hope that I'm still here when the time changes next spring, but employment opportunities abound and on a wild hair I'm even being recruited for a couple of executive engineering positions in locations around the Southeast (by the way...one in Pensacola...Roy.)
Meanwhile, I've been cooking my butt off over the past month or so, doing Pizza every weekend and recently experimenting with Beef Stroganoff and two different versions of Chicken and Rice-one based on Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup and the other based on more exotic ingredients including saffron.
Both preparations still need a little work, so I'll keep working.
The local grocer has a bunch of seafood and other meat on sale, so I think that I have a big shopping trip in my future to add inventory to our deep freezer and prepare for more cooking exploits later this fall. Shrimp, crab legs, whole chickens, and beef parts...you sell it...I'll season it and later serve it up on a platter or in a bowl.
I've finally figured out that you can make a soup out of anything, as long as it is edible to begin with and you put something in it to add a few layers of flavor.
For instance, you can take a couple of cans of Black Beans, toss in a little can of Green Giant yellow corn, a can of chicken or beef stock, add a dash of cumin, red pepper, salt, pepper, and if you can find it a few tablespoons of Goya Recaito and some Goya Mojo, then cook it all down for a half hour or so and then sit down with a bowl full of your concoction and some tortilla chips and act like you're in Mexico instead of Atlanta or Cincinnati.
I'm starting to believe that I can make a bowl full of water, tree limbs and leaves taste good if you give me the right seasonings.
Well, maybe not...
Any way, Missy the Turbo Pup and Pat and I are enjoying the cooler weather and the bikes are coming out of the garage with greater frequency, and now that the beach leash laws have been relaxed in the off season Missy the Turbo Pup is enjoying romping around without a rope attached to her neck.
It's really nice to get the government out of your life and live on what is probably the last piece of underdeveloped Atlantic coast in the entire United States, in spite of what all of the long time locals and nay-sayers say.
I feel some new photos and paintings coming on...
Y'all have a nice day now...if you will...
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Picture me this morning, with my ever greying, ever balding head once again spinning around at orbital rotational velocity, something I haven't allowed it to do for some time now.
I was just sitting around minding my own business, reading a few news stories when I came across this Associated
BAGHDAD - Guards working for an Australian-owned security company working for a company contracted by USAID fired on a car as it approached their convoy Tuesday, killing two women civilians before speeding away from the latest bloodshed blamed on the deadly mix of heavily armed protection details on Baghdad's crowded streets.
The deaths of the two Iraqi Christians — including one who used the white sedan as an unofficial taxi to raise money for her family — came a day after the Iraqi government handed U.S. officials a report demanding hefty payments and the ouster from Iraq of embattled Blackwater USA for a chaotic shooting last month that left at least 17 civilians dead.
The deaths Tuesday at a Baghdad intersection may sharpen demands to curb the expanding array of security firms in Iraq watching over diplomats, aid groups and others
Priddin's statement offers a similar account: "The first information that we have is that our security team was approached at speed by a vehicle which failed to stop despite an escalation of warnings which included hand signals and a signal flare. Finally shots were fired at the vehicle and it stopped
Then, for no apparent reason, the story goes on to recount the balance of the death toll in Iraq yesterday:
In other violence across Iraq, at least 57 Iraqis were found dead or killed in bombings and shootings.
In Beiji, an oil hub 155 miles north of Baghdad, two suicide bombers drove a minibus laden with explosives into the house of a local police chief and detonated an explosives-packed Toyota Land Cruiser outside the home of a leading member of the local Awakening Council, a group of Iraqis who have turned against al-Qaida in Iraq extremists in the area.
Police in Beiji said at least 19 died in the attacks, which badly damaged a Sunni mosque about 100 yards away from the police chief's house. Three guards there were among the dead. The men targeted in the attacks were not killed, police said.
In Baghdad, a series of four car bombs killed 16.
I want to ask this question: "Why mention the other deaths in this story?"
More accurately, "why doesn't the media ever try to put the losses in perspective?"
If I were a professional journalist, would you think that I was working for a Pulitzer prize writing a story that opened like this:
"PEOPLE DIEING LEFT AND RIGHT"
Virgil Rogers-ASSociated Press
Yesterday, in the United States of America, 123 people were needlessly killed by 3000 pound careening boxes of rubber tired sheet metal and plastic produced by angry white male engineers and capitalists from Detroit.
Witnesses said that the occupants of the vehicles were lured into a false sense of security by the air bags and seat belts and died of blunt force trauma when they crashed while babbling on camera phones and watching the displays on their in-cockpit GPS systems.
Meanwhile, another 86 citizens committed suicide, 53 were accidentally poisoned, 49 were killed as a result of crimes, 47 died by falling, 9 by drowning, 9 in fires, 8 choked while eating, 1 was killed by police action, and the medical profession screwed up treatment and took yet another 8 souls on average.
Where do we run?
Where do we hide?
Certainly not in Baghdad.
All this carnage from a country with a population of about 300 million people that doesn't actively have any military action taking place here on our home soil. (click on this link and look at the numbers for yourself.)
If you add it all up, nearly 500 people died in the past 24 hours here at home (over 182,000 per year), but the media would have you believe that in Iraq; a country with a population of over 25 million; a country where three quarters of the swarthy population is intent on blowing up the other 100%; that when a few dozen people crap out due to being vaporized by a Toyota full of Soviet tank ammunition that the world has ended--and worst of all, it's the US's and George Bush's fault.
IT'S JUST NOT TRUE.
Now here is my main point, my "coup de grace"...
To date, as of September 1st, 2007, in the current conflict in Iraq, the US has lost 3,734 troops.
That would be 3,654 men, and 80 women. So much of gender equality in the military.
While we're looking at the numbers, what about Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson's assertion that minority kids are bearing an undue share of the burden in fighting this war?
Well, only 350 of the deaths were African American, while another 405 were Latino or Hispanic. That means that 9% of the casualties were Black and about 11% were Latino, and last time I checked Blacks made up over 12% of the population and the Latinos were running somewhere near 15%.
I guess somebody down at the recruiter office in Watts, Atlanta, and Miami better get busy before I have to call the ACLU and complain.
I think that once again Al and Jesse are proven to be full of their own partially digested collards and ham hocks, the fumes from which assault us on an almost daily basis.
All of that said, here's my final point.
I appreciate the service of every single one of these great, honorable men and women, and I extend my sympathy and appreciation to their friends and family members for their service, and in writing this posting I do not mean to demean the value of their service and sacrifice...
In the period from January 2006 to February 2007, when we had lost 753 soldiers in Iraq due hostile action, the US military also lost 465 in non-combat accidents like car crashes, 205 died of non-combat medical illness, and 155 committed suicide.
Again, add it up folks...more people in the military died from non-combat reasons than died in combat in Iraq, and those figures are out of a total force of 1.6 million active duty, guard, and reserve forces. Thoses losses are only six tenths of one percent higher that that of the general population wandering and driving around here stateside, even with the war going on.
Did anyone every hear this kind of info from the ASSociated Press or from Paul Krugman at the NY times?
Well, as I said before the loss of every soul is a tragedy, but the number of losses needs to be put into perspective relative to the total population you're talking about.
Imagine how many people died in China last year? Wouldn't a news story about China's military training losses make for good "Yellow Journalism" sensationalistic reading?
After all, they have a population of nearly a BILLION and one half.
Do me a favor, and from here on out, will everyone try to keep things in perspective instead of running around joining the crowd screaming "The Sky is Falling?"
(Now get out there and get some work done, I have to go take a nap.)
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
I just noticed on my Blog statistics that this is posting number 1,501--thus my title this morning.
Otherwise, I don't have much to say except to point out that I've done a little Website management, dumping my affiliation with "The Alliance" that had died sometime in the past year and declaring my support for...
Fred Thompson for President.
You'll see a spot in my sidebar linking you to his fundraising site.
At this point I'm not going to tear my clothes off and start foaming at the mouth over the election, but for some reason I just feel like giving Fred a kick in the ass, remembering the last retired actor that we had as president twenty odd years ago (Ron Reagan.)
That worked out OK in my book.
Fred's jumping on the podium out in Iowa today to do his first debate, and I believe that you can expect to hear some sincere, passionate opinions expressed rather than poll driven bullshit.
I guess that we'll see.
Until then, see y'all later...
Monday, October 08, 2007
"What I want to fix your attention on is the vast overall movement towards the discrediting, and finally the elimination, of every kind of human excellence -- moral, cultural, social or intellectual.
And is it not pretty to notice how 'democracy' (in the incantatory sense) is now doing for us the work that was once done by the most ancient dictatorships, and by the same methods?
The basic proposal of the new education is to be that dunces and idlers must not be made to feel inferior to intelligent and industrious pupils. That would be 'undemocratic.'
Children who are fit to proceed may be artificially kept back, because the others would get a trauma by being left behind. The bright pupil thus remains democratically fettered to his own age group throughout his school career, and a boy who would be capable of tackling Aeschylus or Dante sits listening to his coeval's [of the same age] attempts to spell out A CAT SAT ON A MAT.
We may reasonably hope for the virtual abolition of education when 'I'm as good as you' has fully had its way. All incentives to learn and all penalties for not learning will vanish. The few who might want to learn will be prevented; who are they to overtop their fellows?
And anyway, the teachers -- or should I say nurses? -- will be far too busy reassuring the dunces and patting them on the back to waste any time on real teaching. We shall no longer have to plan and toil to spread imperturbable conceit and incurable ignorance among men."
Courtesy of Neal Boortz
Sometimes I really yearn for the good old days when Men were Men and liberals were relegated to being whimpering chamber pot carrying slaves and festering dead corpses on the battlefields of our planet. (Damn...did I really write that? Sorry...I'm leaving it in this morning...)
Slapping myself back into reality, I find myself in a world where practically anyone with a cause (or a bank account) can call some lawyer advertising on the back of the Yellow Pages or contact the ACLU and file a lawsuit claiming some affront to their sensibilities or otherwise attempt to diminish the historical value of guys like Christopher Columbus, Ponce de Leon, and Ferdinand Magellan.
Think about this with me for a minute if you will.
If it weren't for guys like Columbus, most of us would all still be living packed together in the rat and roach infested squalor of northern Africa, the Northern Mediterranean basin, and in bone chilling areas of northern Europe sticking our fingers into Dikes to plug the leaks in the infrastructure while wild eyed bands of roaming Muslims burned cars and complained about their poor employment prospects.
All sexual innuendo aside, instead today I find myself living in the most prosperous, successful, representative Republic that has ever existed on the lovely planet we call home.
Notice I said "Representative Republic", not "Democracy?"
(If I have to explain the concept of Representative Republic versus Democracy to you, just hit the back button on your browser now because you're just going to get more pissed off by the moment and paragraph as I keep writing.)
Most school children and many young adults have been taught that America is a place to be abhorred and embarrassed to live in and be from...(in spite of the current assault on our southern border.)
I don't agree.
Yes, what the European settlers that arrived here in North America did to the
Yes, what the 19th century Americans did by supporting the world wide slave trade when America was a largely agricultural enterprise was wrong, but we also didn't invent slavery and we didn't end the practice when Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in the 1860's.
If you doubt my assertion. just wander over to Africa today and check out what is going on there on a daily basis, under the auspices of the United Nations. Many a black man owns many other black men, women and children; and Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are mute on that situation because right now REAL Africans don't vote, unless they've been allowed to illegally move from Somalia to Maine, Minnesota, or Atlanta and open a Taxi service.
So any way, today we celebrate Columbus day in what is called America, but the protesters couldn't' wait past Sunday's parade in Denver to get the argument started.
DENVER — Police arrested 83 Columbus Day Parade protesters including American Indian Movement activist Russell Means after fake blood and dismembered baby dolls were poured on the parade route Saturday.
At least 10 of those arrested faced charges of resisting arrest, while most faced charges of blocking a parade route or interfering with a peaceful assembly, police spokesman Sonny Jackson said. The parade through downtown was delayed about an hour.
From everything I've read about Columbus, he was a pretty damn remarkable guy, and if he hadn't gotten here first when he did in the 1490's I believe that the land we call the US of A would just be a Continent full of well landscaped grass fields owned by the Mexicans, surrounded by a bunch of African taxi drivers sitting around in used Toyotas waiting for an airplane to land.
Problem is, under this scenario, the Wright Brothers were put in jail in 1904, and Henry Ford was killed in a German concentration camp in 1914, so Toyotas are actually Rickshaws, not gasoline powered VEhicles.
While we're postulating, maybe Global warming never happened either because the industrial revolution died of the Bubonic Plague in the process, stranded in the Middle Ages of Europe.
Taking a big breath...
I don't have much else to say about this subject now, but I believe that in anticipation of going back over to Brunswick to do some more construction later this morning, that I'll wander outside and fog for mosquitoes by smoking a nice cigar, and then give a hearty salute to Christoper Columbus in the process.
"Hey..Yo Chris...How's your hammer hanging?....
Sunday, October 07, 2007
I was just cruising around the Internet to see what was going on in the world, and I noticed that The Drudge Report had a headline matching my title of "Huge Nude Photoshoot In Miami" referencing this story, and I'm afraid that this is what came to mind:
See how something as simple as a Headline can change the whole meaning of a news story?
Once again, the Democrats--particularly John Edwards lovely bride--and
Here's the not so flattering poop (excuse the pun) on this story from the urban legend website Snopes.com.
Speaking from the experience of having a college room mate that had this malady (no Rusty...not you...the other room mate) and having it treated over a few year period, I know that it will stop you from working and that you definitely not want to be sitting around in a foxhole with puss oozing out of a hole that is at least six or eight inches away from the hole in your ass that the media is addressing.
It's rained down here on our little island a little bit practically every day for the past few weeks. As a result, we have a bumper crop of these little guys flying around this weekend:
I'm sitting here in my living room, shirtless, at two in the morning and I've been bitten at least four times by the little buggers that snuck in via our screened porch through the open garage door last evening.
Where's my can of Off?