TurningWheels

Monday, March 31, 2003
 
Journalist Hokey-Pokey

[or is it "Hokie-Pokie"?]

Geraldo Denies Being Kicked Out of Iraq

So is Geraldo in or out? This morning I watched him go off on MSNBC (his former employer) about these rumors he's being removed from Iraq. He is still reporting from there, so what gives? Could somebody from NBC have started this rumor to take attention off of their little traitor Peter Arnett? It's kind of odd that these stories show up at the same time... Regardless, Peter Arnett is the kind of scum that Geraldo can only aspire to be.




 
And Geraldo, too?

Now reports that Geraldo has been kicked out of Iraq by US military brass:

US Military Moves Reporter Geraldo Rivera from Iraq

What the hell was he thinking? If this is true, it's time to go back to the New York news room. Maybe he can get another trash talk show...




 
Peter Arnett fired

After initially defending their correspondent, NBC does what is right, and fires Peter Arnett:

NBC Severs Ties With Journalist Arnett Over Iraqi TV Interview

Read the transcript.

This "interview" he granted to Iraqi TV is horrifying. He, of all people, should be aware of who controls Iraqi TV. And he, of all people, should have known that his words would be a tool for the Iraqi propaganda machine. He provided aid and comfort to our enemy, an enemy who knows no humanity. He, no doubt, emboldened many Iraqi "fighters" by going on and on about coalition "failures". That, along with him gushing about the hospitality of and freedom granted by the Iraqi government over the past 12 years, amounts to a colossal failure in judgement on his part. He should be embarrassed and ashamed, and I am thrilled I won't have to see his face on my TV any time soon (though I never had to anyway, since I watch Fox.)

For the record, I have no issue with what he said, but to whom he said it. Journalists all week have been reporting on the under-estimations of Iraqi resistance, strained supply lines, and war plan re-evaluations (many of the reports have been unsubstantiated.) But a seasoned journalist such as Mr. Arnett should have known better than to say it to Iraqi TV, essentially becoming a mouthpiece for the Iraqi regime.

What's next for Mr. Arnett? He's been fired by CNN, now NBC/MSNBC/National Geographic... perhaps Saddam has a job for him on Iraqi TV. He has enough propaganda experience to even make Saddam proud.

So find your island in the S. Pacific, Mr. Arnett, and start swimming.

Update:

It looks like the UK's Daily Mirror has the stomach for him. Big surprise. And suddenly he is sounding pretty dang snippy:

"I report the truth of what is happening in Baghdad and will not apologize for it," he told the tabloid newspaper, one of the most prominent opponents of Britain's involvement in the war.

Interesting considering his tail-between-the-legs "apology" on the Today show this morning. Oh, yes. That wasn't an apology for what he did, but an apology that it caused such a "firestorm". The guy is so clueless, he can't even comprehend the idiocy of what he did.

"I am still in shock and awe at being fired," New Zealand-born Arnett -- who won a Pulitzer prize for his Vietnam War coverage -- wrote under the banner headline "This war's NOT working."

One look at the front pages of that sorry excuse for journalism, and the pathetic "reporting" from Mr. Arnett, and it's easy to see that they were made for each other. Talk about the decline of a career. Mr. Arnett should probably choose another career path. What an embarrassment.




Sunday, March 30, 2003
 
Palestinian murderers, in the name of Saddam

Palestinian terrrorists have struck again in Israel:

Palestinian Wounds 30 in Suicide Bombing

Baruch Hashem the terrorist only managed to kill himself. Good riddance. One more down, who knows how many to go? Now my thoughts and prayers are with the wounded. Several of them are said to be gravely injured.

Why is it that most news organizations can't bring themselves to call these terrorists what they are? Why must they insist on calling them "militants"? Was it a "militant" who was responsible for killing 30 Israelis as they sat down for Passover seder in this same town a year ago? Is killing innocent civilians considered militancy? Or is it terrorism? I'll go with the latter. And why is it so hard to grasp the true motives behind these barbaric murders? Isn't killing Jews and the destruction of Israel, a Jewish state, obvious or simple enough?

And thank goodness for the "racist" profiling that the Israelis are so damned good at: an Israeli soldier (or perhaps security guard) stopped the terrorist from going inside the cafe. If not for his awareness and the courage to confront this murderer, those 30 Israelis would have been killed.




 
I still love baseball

I have always been a baseball fan, long before I really even knew about other sports. It took a long time to figure out what it is about baseball that I love so much, and why the end of the season leaves me a little sad.

It's the season. Baseball means warm weather (unless you're a Giants fan!), it used to mean summer vacation. Some would argue that it's slow and boring. I would reply that it's relaxing and fun. It's good and social. It's the type of game where you can meet the people around you, and still not miss much of the game-- it encourages human interaction. Kids dream of becoming Barry Bonds, and adult men wonder if they should have pursued their childhood dream to become a Barry Bonds. The end of the season means the end of summer and back to the gloom of icky weather, and it meant back to school. This is why I have always looked forward to the baseball season, and dreaded football.

But baseball also pisses me off. The exorbitant salaries, the use of enhancement drugs to smash the ball harder and farther and more often than ever before, the whining, greedy millionaires complaining about the greedy billionaires who made them millionaires... sometimes I just can't take it. Had they gone on strike last year, I would have boycotted the majors forever (I already boycotted for several years after the '94 strike). Literally. But I believe that they knew what was at stake, and they gave it a rest and got back to playing. And I vow that I will go to more Minor League games, where the game is played for the love of the game. In the Minors, it still is what it used to be.

So I am thrilled that the boys of summer have arrived-- this Winter seemed too long. And I will certainly be sad when they hang up their cleats after another season gone by. In the meantime, I think I'll go to a few games. There is no looming strike this year, and the baseball stadium, for me, is an island of pure happiness in a pretty funky ocean.

In closing, I would like to say:

Go A's!
Go Giants! (in that order...)

And, pretty please, can we have another Bay Bridge World Series?




 
Spring is upon us

Fresh cut grass. Hot dogs and beer (tho' I prefer coke). Peanuts and Cracker Jacks. Chocolate malts. Balls, strikes and outs.

Take me out to the ball game
Take me out with the crowd...

It's time for America's pastime....

PLAY BALL!




 
SF rally to support our troops

I never thought it could happen here, and now I don't feel so alone!

Go check out some pics from the rally today, at Right Thinking from the Left Coast.

Correction:
Make that yesterday.... the date turned before I published this.




Saturday, March 29, 2003
 
March Sadness

Well, phooey. The Cats lost....

What (very) little interest I had in the NCAA tournament is now gone.

On to baseball!!!




Friday, March 28, 2003
 
For the record...

GO CATS!




 
I didn't want to go to Fieldsboro, NJ, either

Town Bans War Tributes on Public Property

Just to be clear, a "war tribute" would be a yellow ribbon, a "we support our troops" sign, etc.

Where would you draw a line if you started allowing the use of public property to exhibit whatever cause anyone wanted?" Tyler told The Trentonian of Trenton for Friday's editions. "Suppose someone wants to tie pink ribbons, or black flags, or a Confederate flag or a Nazi flag on public property?"

I suppose this applies to the protesters who are using public streets to disrupt an entire city. Those same protesters who seem to really love Nazi references. Oh, yes, their disruptive and violent ways are protected by their First Amendment rights, but to display a yellow ribbon... well that's just inflammatory!




 
Iraqi Children

I just saw some video on Fox. A group of Iraqi children (they were very cute) ran up to a soldier (believe he was British) who was handing them hard candy and water. The hard candy is part of their daily ration packs, and they are giving it to the Iraqi civilians.




Thursday, March 27, 2003
 
Glad the hackers are on our side!

Congratulations to the "Freedom Cyber Force Militia"!

Hackers Swap Al-Jazeera Site With Flag

Here is a photo of the hack. ~snicker snicker~

God bless our hackers!




 
Speaking of the J E W S

Yesterday an enlightened soul informed me that the stars at the Academy Awards were actually told to keep their traps shut about the war with Iraq because...

drumroll please.....

...Hollywood is run by Jews.

I feel so much better knowing that. Thanks!




 
Anti-Semitism

I wonder if this is part of the Jewish conspiracy that seems to have a stranglehold on all things in America, such as our foreign policy, the media bias, and even ~gasp!~ the Academy Awards:

Anti-Semitism reported up
Attacks on Jews in Bay Area set record last year

The disgusting anti-Semitism displayed in the Bay Area last year, especially Berkeley, was astounding. They were aggressively critical of Israel's response to the Passover massacre, while not saying a word about the massacre itself. They heavily criticized Israel for the stand-off at the Church of the Nativity, while forgetting that it was the Palestinian terrorists who desecrated one of the holiest Christian sites and counted on the morality and respect of the IDF to keep them safe inside. They justify terrorist bombings inside Israel with the "illegal settlements" argument-- as if putting up a building is morally equivalent to killing women and children. The moral equivalence, in short, is disgusting and totally bizarre. And what is scary is that so many Americans buy into it 100%, as was grotesquely displayed last year at the pro-Palestinian rallies, and to this day at the "anti-war" protests.

Then again, Palestinian "self-defense" is understandable when they are faced every day with the humiliation of the horrible, morally bankrupt IDF. We'll just overlook the fact that Palestinians started a war they knew they couldn't win, they kill Israeli civilians to make a political point (but we won't call that terrorism), and they don't just want the wasteland of Gaza and the West Bank-- no, they want ALL of Israel. And they would not hesitate to kill every last Israeli Jew to get it. Not because they want the land, but because they hate Jews and can't stand the thought of the Jewish pollution that is the great state of Israel.

If somebody tells you that these people are just anti-Israel, I would take it with a crystal of Kosher sea salt. There is a fine, blurry line between hating Israel and hating Jews, and most people do not hesitate to cross it. Then they hide behind the "Israel is an occupying aggressor" blanket. To stand with the Palestinians in such a forceful, hateful way (as so many did last year), is to stand with those who want to exterminate the Jews. But don't worry, once the Jews are taken care of, they'll move on to every other non-Moslem religion. Count on it. Lucky for all non-Jews and non-Moslems, the Jewish people will never again roll over to the aggressors that would wipe us out.

A final point related to this war: Saddam Hussein has been funding Palestinian terrorism for years. Note the "word" on the "Palestinian" street. They celebrated our POWs and fallen troops, and rally with Iraqi flags and pictures of Saddam, while burning American and Israeli flags. They know that a large source of their terrorism funding is about to disappear. If you believe that ousting Saddam will NOT make the region and the world safer, then why don't you take a ride on an Israeli bus. Then tell me how safe you feel.




 
The Senate doing what is right

This is what the Senate should be spending their time on, instead of passing resolutions to re-name fried spuds:

Senate OKs Tax Breaks for Troops




Wednesday, March 26, 2003
 
The French are at it again
France Seeks Big Role in Post-War Iraq

Is this article a joke? I'll pull some quotes, for your convenience (this is pretty much the entire article):

PARIS - Worried it could be shut out of business deals in postwar Iraq, France is drawing up plans to win French companies access to lucrative oil and reconstruction contracts, officials said Tuesday.

The government is determined that French companies will be part of rebuilding Iraq, despite President Jacques Chirac's vigorous opposition to the war, a Finance Ministry official said.

Gilles Munier, an executive board member of the French-Iraq Association for Economic Cooperation, said business leaders and government representatives were studying how to gain a foothold in postwar Iraq.

(emphasis mine)

Perhaps y'all should have thought about this before stabbing the US in the back for the past 6 months. So they didn't want to piss off any of their resident militant Moslems, they didn't want to break any kind of sweat in getting Saddam out, they want to protect their interests in Iraq, they probably have put our troops at risk, and now they want us to dole out the economic rewards of rebuilding the country?

Some French are concerned that a U.S.-led administration in Iraq will favor companies from the United States and other pro-war countries while penalizing companies from France and other war opponents.

Uh, can you blame us? We pay the price with our true allies of disarming Iraq, in the form of our fallen troops (not to mention the economic price, something the area of US $70B for the first six months alone), and now you expect us to say "okay, water under the bridge.... come on in and take your big, fat slice of the pie!"? Get real!!

Officials in Paris say French firms' experience in working in Iraq would be an advantage.

French companies — many with ties to Baghdad stretching back decades — have established themselves as the largest suppliers of goods to Iraq since a U.N. trade embargo was partially lifted in 1996.

Right here you have French motivation in a nutshell. In a free Iraq, they will lose one of their biggest customers. There isn't much else to say about this.

French oil giant TotalFinaElf probably has the biggest stake. It spent six years in the 1990s doing preparatory work on two giant oil fields and has signed two tentative agreements with Saddam to develop them.

If only the pesky US would leave Saddam alone, and the impotent UN would lift those annoying sanctions.

When you deal with the devil....

Munier said he believes American companies will have difficulties in Iraq because of widespread anger against the U.S.-led bombing campaign.

"I don't see how American executives can work when their lives will be at risk," he said. "There will be such hatred toward Americans."

Munier criticized French companies for negotiating with American companies for a piece of their businesses in Iraq, saying that such "collaboration" would damage the image of French business among Iraqis.

BAAA HA HA HA HA HA HA!! Dammit, don't you stupid French companies understand that others will love you only when you "collaborate" with Saddam? How DARE you "collaborate" with the Great Satan, USA! Our REPUTATION is at stake! Merde, alors!

Obviously they give no thought to the fact that perhaps Iraqis will be happy to be free. Perhaps the Iraqis will actually want to work for the companies that are rebuilding. Maybe the Iraqis will appreciate our efforts in re-building. If I were French, I wouldn't step foot in Iraq. I can't imagine that they are very happy with their shenanigans in the UNSC... at least the Iraqi exiles who are free to speak aren't happy with them.

France opposes any U.S. reconstruction plan that would sideline United Nations development agencies, multilateral organizations and non-governmental aid groups.

Chirac has warned that France would vote against any U.N. Security Council resolution that would give "the American and British belligerents the right to administer Iraq."

There they go again, wielding the only "power" they think they have: the famous V E T O.

Dear Mr. ChIraq,
I understand your utter feeling of idiocy right now. You put yourself into a corner by spewing your venom at the United States. As you can see, we are shivering in our boots. Our troops are especially afraid of your chocolate sword.

If you think that the United States, Britain, and our other true allies (40+ nations, at last count) shouldn't have the "right" to administer the nation that we "unilaterally" freed, well, how should I put this....

You can kiss my belligerant, American arse.

Bisou, bisou,

An American.




 
An observation

I just watched the President speak at CENTCOM.

The majority of those who are against this war hate our President. They whine about the costs, and freak out that one of our soldiers may be killed.

Those who are actually brave enough to wear the uniform and fight for our freedom and security really, really like our President. They couldn't cheer loudly enough for him.

This is all I need to know.




 
Public Service Announcement

To those of you who drive in heavy rush hour traffic, and especially to you snot-nosed, teenaged punks driving mommy's and daddy's car with all of your cool snot-nosed friends:

If you see a motorcycle splitting lanes coming up behind you, please don't move to the right to cut it off. You see, splitting lanes when traffic is moving 20 mph on the freeway is kinda why many people choose to commute on their motorcycles. To cut one off is not only rude, but also is risky and can get people hurt.

And to be bitter about the fact that a motorcycle CAN pass your 4-wheeled vehicle is not a good reason to play road-rage games with one (such as speeding by a motorcycle while still taking up half of the motorcycle's lane). Unless you want to end up killing somebody. Not smart. Think, people. Especially you snot-nosed, teenaged punks driving mommy's and daddy's car.

END PSA

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.




Tuesday, March 25, 2003
 
Our brave troops

I somehow missed this story, as it was buried under all the Iraq war news with which we've been inundated for the past week:

U.S. Copter Crash in Afghanistan Kills 6

BAGRAM, Afghanistan - A U.S. Air Force helicopter on a mercy mission to help two injured Afghan children crashed in southeastern Afghanistan, killing all six people on board, the U.S. military said Monday.

The HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter from the 41st Rescue Squadron at Moody Air Force Base in Georgia was on its way late Sunday to pick up the children, who had suffered injuries to the head, said Army spokesman Col. Roger King said. There were thunderstorms in the area at the time, he said.

"You think about the sacrifice these guys made, especially in this case where you've got military personnel who are conducting a flight that's basically a humanitarian mission," King added. "They're trying to go out and save some Afghan kid's life — it's wrenching."

Our military does so much more than conduct war missions. Much, much more. Our government does a terrible PR job in getting all the wonderful humanitarian deeds of our armed forces into the news, in front of Americans and the world. And they risk their lives every single day on these missions.

I won't let their story remain buried under other news. So I personally want to thank these American servicemen and women who gave their lives to help the helpless. This is what America is all about, this is what we stand for. You have the gratitude of the world. God bless.

1st Lt. Tamara Archuleta, 23, of Los Lunas, N.M.

Staff Sgt. Jason Hicks, 25, of Jefferson, S.C.

Master Sgt. Michael Maltz, 42, of St. Petersburg, Fla.

Senior Airman Jason Plite, 21, of Lansing, Mich.

Lt. Col. John Stein, 39, of Bardolph, Ill.

Staff Sgt. John Teal, 29, of Dallas, Tx.




 
Came across this today...

I came across this article today while I was searching for Gulf War I stats and thought it would be interesting to post, in light of what is happening in the world.

Weapons inspector: Stop catering to Baghdad (August 27, 1998)

Scott Ritter on Kofi Annan:

"I view his role as being basically a sounding board for Iraqi beefs with the special commission, and all of these serve nothing more than to distract everybody away from the key issue at hand, which is the disarmament of Iraq," Ritter told CNN.

Scott Ritter on the UNSC and Iraqi compliance:

Ritter also said the Iraqis are "absolutely" aware that they are exploiting the sanctions issue.

"Every time the Security Council moves away from enforcement (of the resolution), it gives the Iraqis more confidence, more belief that continued obstruction by Iraq will only lead to continued moving away from confrontation," he said.

Each boost in Iraqi confidence, Ritter said, creates an even bigger gap in its relationship with the Security Council, and makes it even harder to bring the Iraqis into compliance with the disarmament mandate.

Never mind that Scott Ritter has done a complete 180 since 1998 (I'm not sure how he figures Saddam has had a change in heart since then, or how he figures the WMDs that were there in 1998 have somehow disappeared.) His words then, when the original inspections regime was at a tense crossroads, still ring true today.

So to those who say that the inspections were working, and that the inspections are successful in containment, I suggest you look into the background of this conflict. And go beyond the past year, or even the past five years. And may I suggest picking up a copy of The Threatening Storm, by Kenneth M. Pollack. It's eye opening.

And to those of you who are Bush-haters/Clinton-lovers now disguised as peaceniks (Mr. Ritter??), it was YOUR president, Mr. Clinton, who shifted our policy towards Iraq from containment to regime-change. Mr. Bush is just the one who happens to be walking the talk. It's too bad Mr. Clinton had more pressing things to attend to, such as averting an impeachment and sweeping his misdeeds under the carpet. If he had done his business when he should have, we wouldn't be where we are today.

That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it.




Monday, March 24, 2003
 
Happy Birthday, Jim!

Another birthday is upon us. Happy birthday to my better half.

I love you.




 
Chew on this

Eminem has an Oscar, and Martin Scorsese (Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Goodfellas, etc.) doesn't.

This is a crazy world, indeed!




 
More about Moore

A couple more thoughts about Mr. Moore.

First, his little "anit-war" message is so lost in his anti-Bush rhetoric (ficticious elections?) that it's really hard to take him seriously. And I personally don't consider him to be a peacenik at all, not with his finger-wagging, angry "acceptance" speech. You really just need to read his open letter to Bush to realize that the guy is a friggin' idiot. He claims to speak as "we", when he really just speaks for himself and the sheep that are his fans.

Second, I thought it would be helpful to share the definition of "documentary", from Merriam Webster:

Main Entry: 1doc·u·men·ta·ry
Pronunciation: "dä-ky&-'men-t&-rE, -'men-trE
Function: adjective
Date: 1802
1 : being or consisting of documents : contained or certified in writing
2 : of, relating to, or employing documentation in literature or art; broadly : FACTUAL, OBJECTIVE <a documentary film of the war>

Objective? If anybody who has seen Bowling for Columbine considers it objective, or even truthful, then I would suggest digging into many of the claims made in the movie for some clarity. Also, I would urge people to look at his website to see how utterly "objective" this guy is. As I've said, he is anti-capitalist, anti-Bush, anti-Republican, anti-personal responsibility, anti everything. To continue our lesson plan for this fine Monday:

Main Entry: pro·pa·gan·da
Pronunciation: "prä-p&-'gan-d&, "prO-
Function: noun
Etymology: New Latin, from Congregatio de propaganda fide Congregation for propagating the faith, organization established by Pope Gregory XV died 1623
Date: 1718
1 capitalized : a congregation of the Roman curia having jurisdiction over missionary territories and related institutions
2 : the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person
3 : ideas, facts, or allegations spread deliberately to further one's cause or to damage an opposing cause; also : a public action having such an effect

(emphasis mine)

So you be the judge. Is his film a documentary? Or is it propaganda?

And an example of his passionate pursuit of "truth", observe his comments to reporters backstage:

He dismissed the jeers he received, telling reporters: "Don't report that there was a split decision in the hall because five loud people booed."

So there he was, speaking as "WE", when video clearly shows hardly anybody applauding his tirade, and the boos equaling, if not drowning out, the cheers. But in his perfect world, he would have control over all media for 24 hour broadcast of his truthful little world.

I feel for the guy, though. How miserable a life he must lead. Then again, he's so convinced of his untruths that he's probably quite happy living in his la-la land, where he can bash capitalism and then go home and count his greenbacks. Ah, the beauty of these United States.




Sunday, March 23, 2003
 
Michael Moore gets what he deserves

After the joke of his winning an Oscar for what clearly is no "documentary", Michael Moore used his acceptance speech to spew his usual vile about world events. The strange thing: he was booed.

Michael Moore booed as he slams Iraq war at Oscars

"We live in fictitious times," he said when picking up the award for best documentary for his anti-gun film "Bowling for Columbine."

"We live in a time with fictitious election results that elect fictitious presidents. We live in a time when we have a man sending us to war for fictitious reasons.

"We are against this war Mr Bush. Shame on you. Shame on you!," he said to loud boos from an of 3,500 including most of Hollywood's top stars.

Anti-gun film? How about anti-capitalism, anti-responsibility, and anti-Bush/Republican? His words show total disrespect towards our troops who are overseas right now, taking on numerous casualties for his right to open his mouth.

Mr. Moore, it's time for you to get over your stoopid white arse, and crawl back under the rock from which you came. Now you'll have a little gold statuette to keep you company. Perhaps Oscar will give a crap about what you have to say. I don't. Now go be a Human Shield!




 
Russian complicity?

The reports are shaky, and this story is just breaking (Fox has just reported): The Russians recently have sold jamming equipment to the Iraqis. And possibly up until last week, Russian technology experts were in Iraq training them how to use them. The UN back-stabbing is all becoming very clear....

If this turns out to be true, the Russians should be held accountable for Coalition casualties that result from their complicity with the Iraqi regime. I believe that we will see just how many of our "allies" have been working with the enemy, and those who criticize the US and embrace France, Germany and Russia will be shown for the fools that they are.

As soon as I find this story on the web, I'll post a link.

Update:

U.S. Concerned About Russian Weapon Sales

We'll see what happens with this. I just hope that these actions will not result in coalition or civilian casualties, if they haven't already.




 
If this doesn't shut up the protesters...
Arab TV Shows Allegedly Captured Troops

If these are in fact coalition forces, and if, in fact, they have been executed after capture, I hope to God that the protesters will think twice about what they are doing. Let's put it this way: the Iraqi "troops" are being treated more humanely after surrender than while under Iraqi command. Our troops face torture and execution if and when they are captured. This is what the peaceniks want to leave as is: a tyrannical regime that has violated every single international law in the books. This just goes to show that Saddam doesn't care about the UN, and he doesn't care about the Geneva Convention. Keep protesting, you freaks-- and may the ghost of our troops haunt you for the rest of your lives.

Update:

Iraq Shows Dead and Captured U.S. Soldiers

God help them and all of our troops.




Saturday, March 22, 2003
 
What is their goal?
"After 16 hours of fighting communists and anarchists, a Red Bull can help us go another 16 hours," said Sgt. Rene Laprevotte as he bought two cans of the energy drink at a Fifth Street market. "We're here as long as they are."

The protests in San Francisco on Thursday were an embarrassment. But what is difficult to understand is what exactly is the point of these people? The hypocrisy of these protests is amazing, and it's hard to get behind a group that has such a mob mentality. Try to engage any of them in a discussion about what they are allegedly protesting, and they go off on countless unrelated issues. These people are anti-capitalist, anti-police (what do you get on the other end of the spectrum from capitalism? Communism. Communist nations are police states, so what exactly are they seeking???), anti-Bush, anti-everything. They protest war with violence, and they have zero tolerance for any opinion that does not match their own. The police response has been admirable, and the people of San Francisco who have been trying to go about their business have been downright polite.

What makes even less sense is the damage and costs they are incurring to the city. The assistant police chief has said that the overtime costs for the SFPD to patrol these protests alone are $400 - 500K per day. This is in a city that is already running a deep deficit and does not see an end in sight. This will inevitably result in cuts in many of the social programs that are undoubtedly pet issues for many in the "anti-war" crowd. That's quite the productive action, no? They are taking police attention away from people who may really need it, plus creating a potential disaster if a major emergency were to arise. Ambulances and other emergency vehicles have been held up in the traffic jams, resulting in delays for those who need medical treatment. They are also costing businesses large and small the revenues they need to pay their bills and feed their families, plus the tax revenues of lost sales. But when you spend your days not working and just pissing people off, I wouldn't expect them to really think this through.

These protests are not a continuation of the "culture" in San Francisco. These are just law breaking, opportunistic punks who are causing incredible damage to a city that really doesn't need this. If anything, they are alienating a population that is historically against war. Keep it up, guys!




Friday, March 21, 2003
 
Certainty = Confidence

Stocks Rally; Dow Marks 8th Day of Gains

Stocks are up.

Oil prices have plunged.

And the dollar is at a two-month high against major currencies.

It looks like we are heading into more certain times. Let's just hope that our victory is swift, and casualties are minimal. Thank goodness we've ended the delay.




 
We've arrived
Saddam will disappear.



 
I didn't want to go to Thailand anyway

Hotel Bans U.S. Tourists in War Protest

"I have politely told them that I am opposed to the policies of their government, and Americans are not welcome here," he told Reuters. "My resort is against war mongers."

So every American is a war monger, whether or not they support this war. I support the decision to topple Saddam, but with a heavy heart and constant prayers that it will end quickly with minimal casualties. But I must be a war monger, too. Well, Thailand was never really on my list of destinations, anyway.




 
Speaking of...

Here is an interesting article written by an American-born Israeli who lost her daughter in the August, 2001, Sbarro bombing in Jerusalem:

The ugly truth

This puts people like Rachel Corrie into perspective.

(Credit: Naomi Ragen)




 
Don't jump in front of bulldozers

The death on Sunday of an American "protester" in Israel has really brought out a lot of passions from people here in the US. She went there knowing damn well that there is a war going on. She made the decision to go regardless, and paid the ultimate price.

And we now get this glowing biography of the idiot from none other than the LA Times:

Activist Had Soft Spot for Underdogs (Catchy header, eh?)

Peace advocate Rachel Corrie is remembered as having 'a heart too big to hold,' which makes her death in the Gaza Strip all the more cruel.

Apparently her heart was so full of anger and hatred that it became too big to hold.

She stood in the way of a bulldozer that was about to wreck a Palestinian home. Depending on whose version you believe, the bulldozer was either digging out bombs (Israel's version) or razing neighborhoods for a new wall that Israel wants to build (the Palestinian version).

Right, Israel just feels like building a wall, so they are arbitrarily knocking down homes to do so. It has nothing to do with the terrorists who are illegally smuggling arms over the Egypt border into Gaza, and then taking them into Israel to kill civilians on buses. Those unreasonable, heartless Israelis.

Just as military vehicles did in Manila when, during the 1986 "people's revolution," nuns handed out flowers to the machine-gunners. Just as the column of tanks did in Tiananmen Square in 1989, when a lone man, broadcast worldwide on television, stood in the path and brought the war machines to a standstill.

These are examples of "moral" militaries who were confronted by innocents. Right. Israel is no China. Israel is no Philippines. And Ms. Corrie was no "peace" activist. The difference in these situations is that she took the side of the terrorists. Had she been bombed on a bus in Tel Aviv, then perhaps we could make these comparisons. This is so painfully obvious, I'm getting annoyed writing this.

Friends describe Corrie as athletically slender with blond hair and thoughtful, intelligent eyes. She was attractive in a plain-spoken way, the opposite of flashy, not working to call attention to herself.

Uh huh.

The pictures are interesting (sorry for linking to sfindymedia-- blecht). They show her standing clearly in front of the bulldozer, then they show her bulldozed. Where are the photos of the time in between? Could they be missing because she did something royally stupid that would clearly show that the operator was in no way responsible? It has been reported that she sat down (or fell) on the mound of dirt just before she was run over. Look at the bulldozer, and tell me about the visual clarity from the driver's seat. Any normal human being would probably assume that normal human beings would get out of the way.

What people don't seem to get is that she was there providing aid and comfort to terrorists. She has condoned the actions of the murderers of innocent Israeli women, children and men. She burned a mock up of an American flag among Palestinian children (for somebody who is allegedly preaching peace, she sure didn't do anything end the culture of hate and violence that is the Palestinian way.) She never once spoke out for the innocent Israelis being murdered on a daily basis. She presented her "facts" as though Israel is the aggressor, taking action that is unprovoked, the goal being "ethnic cleansing". She neglects to acknowledge that Israel has an obligation to protect her citizens, and nothing has worked as effectively as lock-downs and tightly secured border crossings. She cites the history of "Palestine" as the basis for the Israelis not having the right to be on that sliver of land (she obviously has not read the Bible, or any history pre-700 AD). The situation is unfortunate, but clearly it is in the hands of the Palestinians.

She made the misguided decision to get in the way of the Israeli fight against terrorists. The bulldozer she confronted was clearing brush, not homes. The bulldozer operator cannot be made responsible for the dangerous behavior of an ignorant idiot. When you choose to take the side of evil, nothing good can come from it. Rachel Corrie chose her path and met her fate.

I'll save my tears for the innocent Israelis who will inevitably become the next victims of the terrorists she called friend.




 
Screw Canada

Apparently, Canadians don't know the meaning of respect:

Before the New York Islanders played the Canadiens on Thursday night, the crowd was asked to "show your support and respect for two great nations" before the anthems. But a significant portion of the crowd booed throughout "The Star-Spangled Banner."

"I came to the game pretty pumped up, but once I heard that it really got me going," said Islanders forward Mark Parrish, from Bloomington, Minn. "So I guess I can thank them a little bit for getting me more pumped up."

It must be really nice to live under the blanket of American security, never pay for it, and then complain about it. I have no tolerance for those who show utter disrespect to the people that keep them free. Our troops are putting their lives on the line for all of us, and they boo. Booing our anthem today is like thumbing your nose at our troops. So keep burning our flag and booing our national anthem-- I'll keep that in mind the next time I hear O Canada.

Oh, by the way, final score: New York 6, Montreal 3.




Thursday, March 20, 2003
 
Pardon my dust

Seems like I'm spending more time trying to iron out all the kinks in this blog than actually writing. If things look out of place, text disappears, or colors flip out, it's just me moving the furniture around in here. I'm also trying to figure out why the heck a comma keeps showing up at the end of each comment. ?!?! I've searched high and low in the code, and can't find the errant comma anywhere. oy...




 
Back in the saddle

So glad to be home. Sad at what I've come home to (literally heard the President's speech in the car on the way home from the airport), but relieved we're finally getting on with this. I have so much catching up to do... I don't know where to begin!

Speaking of saddles-- went horseback riding yesterday for the first time since high school. It was just a walk around a desert trail. The desert was incredibly green from the recent rains, and the wild flowers are just days away from blooming. The geography of our south west desert is spectacular. My horse, Pepper, was so sweet, once I got over the intimidation of this animal that is at least 5 times my size. And now I'm really sore, and knew I would be when I couldn't walk after dismounting. Who knew that you actually use muscles to ride a horse??




Wednesday, March 19, 2003
 
God Bless...

... our brave troops

... our Commander in Chief

God bless America




Monday, March 17, 2003
 
Happy Birthday, Mom!

I won't call out her age (never do that to a lady!), but she has the spirit of a person half her age. Happy birthday, Mom! I love you.




 
Dial up blues

I'm away from home (freezing my tail off in Arizona, to be specific) and my dial up hasn't been working. Now it is working, and I can't deal. It is just so slow. It's been at least 2 years since I've used a dial-up connection, and I just don't want to use it ever again. Hotels need to get on the ball and equip rooms with broadband. Better yet, a wireless broadband network. (I'm drooling.) And of course I'm offline while there is so much going on in the world. I'm in my room right now, skipping out on our conference, waiting for President Bush to finally crack the whip.

As far as freezing, it has been raining all day, and it's cold. Mid-fifties, and windy. Don't laugh, I'm a native Californian, and I guess I expected some desert sun in the middle of March. Oh well. I can't wait to go home.




Friday, March 14, 2003
 
Questions

I have a lot of questions regarding the Elizabeth Smart abduction. Specifically, what role her upbringing (religious) played in the events. But since we have so few details, I'll just keep those questions safely tucked away in my head. In the meantime, this should be a huge lesson: parents need to teach their kids at an early age-- certainly before they reach 14-- about how to deal with strangers. Regardless, thank goodness she's home.




Thursday, March 13, 2003
 
COMMENTS!

I found comments! Now we'll see how reliable they are...

Brought to you courtesy of backBlog.




 
Friends and foes
France is making friends:

France Rejects British-Proposed Iraq Plan

As the United States tried to force a U.N. vote this week, the fissure in Europe over Iraq deepened Thursday: France rejected a British-proposed compromise resolution and London angrily accused Paris of pushing the world closer to war.

Iraq, reveling in the turmoil at the U.N. Security Council, rejected Britain's plan, which lists six disarmament requirements Baghdad would have to meet or else face "serious consequences."

... and enemies:

Britain Furious With France Over Iraq

In shockingly blunt language for allies, British officials assailed their French counterparts for blocking efforts to set a deadline for Iraq to disarm. Britain accused France of rejecting its proposal without considering it.

"What I find extraordinary (is) that without even proper consideration the French government have decided that they will reject these proposals," said British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw.

Iain Duncan Smith, leader of the opposition Conservative Party, emerged from a meeting with Prime Minister Tony Blair to say war appeared likely because of France.

"He (Blair) made the reason for this as the fact that the French have become completely intransigent," he told journalists.

The attacks reflected Britain's anger with what it sees as a cynical French ploy aimed at creating a French-led counterweight to the United States in world affairs.

And there you have it. The bottom line in this issue has nothing to do with whether or not Saddam is in compliance. It's all about power, or the new world order. France is simply trying frustrate things, and we are letting them succeed. If they really wanted to come to an agreement in the UNSC, they wouldn't pre-emptively veto any and all resolutions introduced by the US or Britain --and then turn around and offer one of their own.

Oh, and let's not forget France's "interests" in Iraq.

Dominique de Villepin's constant reference to this mythical "automatic war", and "rush to war", is like fingernails on a blackboard. Is 12 years a "rush"? Are these idle attempts at diplomacy considered "automatic war"?

Felicitation a Paris! Saddam is on your side!

Now Messrs. Bush and Blair-- let's roll.




 
Thoughts about current events

I don't get it, and I'm getting so frustrated. What is this crap that the "inspections are working"??? Have the people who make this claim even read UNSC Resolution 1441? Or any of the UNSC's resolutions on Iraq thus far? (I'm sure they've been translated into French.)

If they had, they would realize that the inspections have done their job: they've proven that Iraq has not disarmed-- they have not complied. The inspectors are NOT there to sniff for weapons. They are there to verify Iraq's disarmament-- all Iraq has to do is show proof. At the UNSC meeting on Friday, one of the ministers (I can't remember who off the top of my head-- either Palacio or Straw) said that deceit and lies take time, while the truth, being easy, can be shown immediately. In other words, this game has gone on for far too long.

Saddam has thumbed his nose at the international community for 12 years. He has violated the terms of the 1991 cease fire agreement with the US-led coalition. If that's not reason enough to boot him, I don't know what is. He has violated numerous UNSC resolutions since 1991 and is making the UN really look and sound like a bunch of bumbling idiots. I will respect the UN when they all agree and say that the world will be a safer place without Saddam in power. To leave him in power will be irresponsible to the world. The only way out of this is an invasion, or for him to step down. (Yet I believe that his stepping down would be useless unless he is brought to justice for his crimes against humanity. Why let him live a luxurious life in Paris after all the pain and suffering he has caused to millions of people?)

But Saddam has been successful in one thing: bringing out the new world order. The French are starting to sound like whining has-beens (though, have they ever been?), worried about their secondary place in the world. They obviously aren't comfortable with the US as superpower. But if they really thought about it, they could be part of this superpower's inner circle, if only they would work with us instead of so actively against us. That's where Tony Blair has been brilliant. He is carving out a place in the world for Britain. Britain, as long as they don't go wobbly on us, will be a partner. How could we not consult with them in the future on issues of world security and peace initiatives after their actions over the past few years? They are standing by us, we will stand by them. Jacque ChIraq is missing a golden opportunity, and he is carving a place in the world for France: irrelevance.

It's time for the US to stop worrying about what these imbecile nations think of us, and to do what's right. If we go into Iraq, it will not be unilaterally (30+ nations does not = unilateral), and those who are opposed should be shut out of any post-war rebuilding. I'm just so tired of waiting, and I'm so tired of our government doing backflips for "diplomacy." This, my friends, is not diplomacy. It's political blackmail. Let's face it, everybody else needs us more than we need them (I'm a typical arrogant American, no?), so let's get on with this and let the cards fall where they may.




Wednesday, March 12, 2003
 
Campus life, 2003

Another example of the irreproachable ways of the anti-war crowd and America's "intellects":

College to Apologize for Anti-War Credit

It's unbelievable what is becoming of college campuses lately. This example is blatantly obvious, but this kind of thing is going on all over our country in much more subtle ways. I don't recall any of this type of politicking from my professors while I was in school (that's not to say there wasn't plenty of it on campus!) If it had happened, I would have raised hell. The beauty of this is that this speech professor used her position of power over students' futures to push forward her agenda, be it her anti-war stance or her rally to avoid the unemployment line. She actually punished students who didn't agree with her politics. That the professors' union believes she hasn't been given "due process" is a total joke, and indicative of their own agenda. Due process? It's pretty clear what she did. She abused her position. Period. I don't want my tax dollars funding political agendas in schools. But one has to ask: is leave with pay seriously considered punishment? She throws ethics out the window, and now she gets a paid vacation, courtesy of my taxes?? She should be forced to memorize the US Constituion, then fired. I don't care if this is Harvard, Penn State, or Citrus College. This nonsense cannot be tolerated any longer.




 
Home sweet home

It's rare these days to read the paper or watch TV and get some really good news-- it's actually been a real drag for the past year and a half. There has been one exception, the Pennsylvania miners' rescues last summer. And now Elizabeth Smart is sleeping in her own bed tonight, safely reunited with her parents and family, and the evil people who stole almost a year of her life are behind bars. We don't yet know exactly what she's been through over these past few months, and we will likely never really know. But we can be sure that the nightmare of the past nine months is over and this family can now look forward to rebuilding their lives. I hope that this girl will one day be able to take her life back and enjoy some normalcy. This story gives me hope that good things can still happen in this crazy world.




 
Ah, censorship

China Orders Rolling Stones to Ax Songs

The band, which is scheduled to perform in Shanghai April 1 and in Beijing April 4, will not be allowed to play "Brown Sugar," "Honky Tonk Women," "Beast of Burden," or "Let's Spend the Night Together," said Chen Jixin head of Beijing Time New Century Entertainment, a concert organizer behind the two China dates.

The four songs, all of which include sexual references, were originally cut from the mainland release of the band's "40 Licks" compilation album by China's culture ministry, Chen said. "Brown Sugar" refers to an interracial coupling.

Interracial coupling? Scandalous! Well, the fact that they're even being allowed to play at all is a huge step, considering they've been trying to get in since 1970. Rock on China!




Tuesday, March 11, 2003
 
Charlie Hustle

Please, please, please! Baseball needs to ease the ban on Pete Rose and finally give him the credit he deserves as one of the greatest baseball players in recent history. So he is a failure at life-- does it matter in baseball, when you're talking about the player with the most hits ever? He was the epitome of a sportsman and everything that present-day players are not. When he was walked, he ran. When he turned third base, the catcher at home plate would hold his breath and pray. He played to win, and he made baseball exciting to watch.

It's time to end this travesty. Keep him banned from managing forever, for all I care. But the guy deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. If the wife-beater Ty Cobb is there, then why not Rose? His crime hurt nobody but himself-- I actually feel sorry for him. Why do the commissioners feel the need to preach about morals? Take a look around baseball and show me a player who has clean hands. Why did the Hall of Fame adjust the rules in 1990 to keep ineligible players out of the Hall? Could it be because they wanted to keep Rose out? A ban of a few years is understandable, but 14 years is long enough. The Hall is supposed to honor great careers, not judge the off-field (late career) shenanigans of players. His crime was gambling, for crying out loud!! The fans have already voted him in with a lengthy ovation at the All Century ceremony at the '99 World Series, and isn't this all about the fans? Let's hope they do the right thing and make him eligible for the Hall once and for all. Time's running short and it would be terribly sad to allow this window to close.




 
One of those days

So much to say, and no time to say it. I'll have to catch up tonight.

~sigh~




Monday, March 10, 2003
 
Math riddle
Let me get this straight: If France or Russia needs to use their veto, that means the US/British/Spanish coalition gathered enough votes for a majority. So let's say we end up in that situation. Does that mean we're going into war without UN backing, even though the majority votes in favor? Or does it mean that we're going with UN backing, but without the "blessing" of the French or Russians. I vote for the latter. Let's watch history in the making-- where France, once again, will come out on the wrong side of it.



 
Same old song and dance

Who are we kidding? I hope the world doesn't buy this one. Nothing will ever change in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict as long as Arafat has power. This is obviously a charade:

Arafat, who last month agreed to appoint a premier under intense international pressure, has the right to appoint and dismiss the premier and retains control over security and peace talks.

What?! He has the right to hire and fire his PM, and retains control over security and the peace process?? So where's the news here? I'll feel better when Abbas has real power and starts to crack down on the suicidal murderers. It's time to change the Palestinian death culture.




 
UN Objectivity?

Why the heck did Blix on Friday fail to mention the illegal drone that his inspectors found in Iraq?? And why is the media barely giving this news any air time? Blix needs to be up front and honest. Things like this can help the fence-sitters to make a decision. And this glaring omission only makes him and his team look like they are playing soft and working to avert a war, as opposed to their stated mission of verifying disarmament (their mission is NOT to disarm). Saddam needs to be raked over the coals, not coddled. If they find something, they should be yelling about it. Burying it deep within a written report is unacceptable. Why does everybody seem so determined to keep the guy in power? I just don't get it.




 
Bummer, pt. II

Okay, now I'm getting annoyed. First they trade their captain, now they've traded their enforcer! I'm definitely going to miss Marchment's hard hitting style and general bad attitude on the ice. Rumor has it the Sharks are going to trade their top-paid players, including Selanne and Damphousse. Tomorrow we'll know if I'm going to jump off this ship for next year-- when the owner's stated goal is profitability, you know you're being set up for disappointment. It's sports! The goal is to W-I-N! I just can't take it! Trade the owners!!




Friday, March 07, 2003
 
Comment, please

Oh, how I would love to get comment capability. What's the point of a blog without some good ol' flame-throwing? That will be my goal for this weekend.




 
The UNSC meeting

Can't wait for the transcript of British Foreign Minister Jack Straw's comments. When I find it, I'll post a link. The best part, which was directed towards France's Foreign Minister, Dominique de Villepin, was his "correction" of Mr. de Villepin's allegation that European and Arab League diplomacy is the source of the pressure on Saddam, with some help from the British and US military threat. Basically Mr. de Villepin was taking credit for Saddam's "cooperation." Mr. Straw said, essentially, uh, it's the other way around. Boo-ya!




 
Welfare to work

Michael Moore can take this and shove it up his stoopid white arse:

Researchers Back Welfare-to-Work Programs

Mr. Moore's idea that the Welfare to Work program, not bad parenting or adult responsibility, led to the shooting death of a six-year-old child is a joke. Not once does he place the blame on the adult owners of the gun who left it within easy reach of a six-year-old boy, the adult who was left responsible for the boy. Not once did he blame the boy's mother, who left her son with an obviously irresponsible adult.

I am the product of a single mother who worked her tail off to support three children. We didn't have a "helpful" extended family in the neighborhood, much less on this continent, and we never were on welfare. My mother brought us up with a strong hand-- no, she did not hit us. But she commanded respect from us, or else. We were brought up with a respect for authority, and an emphasis on the importance of education in living a better life. None of us ended up in legal trouble or on drugs. Our mother worked (3 jobs, 7 days/week, at one point), and we didn't kill our classmates. Bottom line is that our mother raised us with incredible strength of character and a lot of love. She was a good parent. That is the bottom line in these tragic stories: anybody can have a child, but very few (relatively speaking) can be good parents.

And one more point on what was by far the worst movie I've seen in a long time (that would be Bowling for Columbine): Lockheed Martin/the US Government/Rich White America/[fill in the blank] did not give those murderous teenage thugs the guns and bomb-making materials to kill their classmates in Littleton. The crooks of our society will always find other crooks to help them achieve their goals. Again, some good ol' parental supervision probably would have prevented the tragedy. Let's put the blame where the blame belongs, okay?

And on that note, I will say no more. I regret spending my money on that joke of a movie. If it wins the Academy Award for Best Documentary, it will officially wipe out any iota of credibility the Academy Awards has in choosing legitimately deserving films for awards. Bowling for Columbine was no documentary-- it was an anti-Bush, anti-Republican, anti-Capitalism rant, filled with lies, ommissions and one-sided theories.




Thursday, March 06, 2003
 
Support our troops!

Via LGF: You can donate money to the USO for care packages for our forward-deployed troops. Just $25 buys one care package. This is a cheap, easy way to raise the spirits of our brave soldiers, who are probably feeling a little homesick. When my brother was overseas, we (w/Mom organizing) sent him care packages with tons of stuff: gameboy, walkman, sunflower seeds, kool-aid (to cover up the ick of de-salinated water), and I believe he really enjoyed getting the packages. Not only that, but I sent letters or cards at least twice per week, just so he knew I was thinking of him (also sent a couple of letters to his friends). I don't doubt the gesture lifted my spirits as much as his, in a kinda selfish way.

You can send your check to the USO:
USO World Headquarters
P.O. Box 70264
Washington, DC 20024




 
Blair + MTV

Prime Minister Blair faces his Parliament for a grilling every week. Why do I think he was able to handle the snot-nosed twenty-somethings on MTV, no problem? Regardless, I want to see this when they air it in the US (schedule).

Bart Woord, 19, said that if anything had changed his anti-war stance, it was not Blair but the audience members from Iraq. "It was particularly shocking to hear what they have been through. That made me understand a little more the need to act quickly," Woord said after the debate.

One of those Iraqis, Ammar Hassan, had praise for Blair's "courage and leadership" and a plea for him to remove Saddam from power.

"People are dying as we speak. Iraq is under fire, and I want you to stop the flame, and that is Saddam Hussein," said Hassan, 23, who came to Britain from Baghdad in 1988. "Can you guarantee me that this is going to happen and that the liberation of Iraq will be for the good of humankind and it is a civilized and moral issue?"

Right there, that quote is precisely the reason that you will never see an Iraqi exile at an "anti-war" (or anti-world-peace) rally. Never.




 
Time to come clean

Even if he had nothing to do with the actual crime, he must know something. This is so incredibly sad, and Scott Peterson has done nothing to earn my sympathy. Au contraire, he comes off incredibly arrogant, and a little too smug for my taste-- nothing like a man who has just lost his wife and unborn child. I believe he had something to do with it, and for the sake of her family, I hope he will just come clean and tell all he knows. It's been long enough.




 
Me wants...

I really want an iPod...




 
AAH! Turn off the lights!
This has got to be THE scariest picture I have ever seen.



 
Bummer

After weeks of rumors, the Sharks have traded their captain. While I like him, he isn't necessarily my favorite. He's hot and cold, quick tempered, and rubs some of his teammates the wrong way. Since they brought in Teemu Selanne two years ago, Nolan's attitude has become less attractive-- at least in contrast to Selanne's apparent friendliness and smiling demeanor. But Nolan was exciting to watch, productive (on a team where several players regularly produce goals) and gritty. He will be missed, but he's going to a very cool team. Now onward to 2003/04!




 
Let's go, already!

Let's hope that tonight we will get a make it or break it date, a la January 16, 1991. Watched our soldiers on 60 Minutes II last night. God bless them.




Wednesday, March 05, 2003
 
Say it loud, say it proud

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.




 

"Once again the bestial hand of Palestinian terrorism has struck at the heart of Israel..."

- Mark Sofer, Foreign Ministry spokesman

15 dead.

Update: Make that 16. And that number may grow.




Tuesday, March 04, 2003
 
If only...

A program that is becoming part of my Sunday evening schedule is on C-SPAN: Prime Minister's Questions. It is so incredibly entertaining. It almost seems like a bunch of British folks hanging out at a pub, taking jabs at each other after a couple of pints. It resembles a Monty Python skit to Jim. If only our government had a weekly Q&A session with the President, where they could throw out all of the stiff decorum of the Senate/House floor and just heckle the hell out of each other... how sweet would that be? Then maybe Americans would actually take more of an interest in what their government is actually doing.

After watching this show a few times, I've gained much respect for Tony Blair. He's very articulate and has answers to just about every question. And he doesn't hesitate to "jab" back at his Conservative rival, the Hon. Iain Duncan Smith. When the two of them go at it, it's like a gentleman's joust.




 
Did he learn anything?
So George Clooney cries about the taunting from cruel kids he endured when he was 11. He was teased because of a medical condition over which he had no control-- it was "devastating". At age 41 he uses the uncontrollable and terminal medical condition of somebody with whom he disagrees as joke fodder. Ladies and gentlemen, the lovely, compassionate, intelligent, consistent Mr. George Clooney. ~yawn~



 
Day-O!

Man, Harry Belafonte is seriously wacked and should really seek some help. It's probably safe to say that he himself is possessed by something... not sure what. Ego-mania, perhaps? I would bet that he will be on the wrong side of history in this case, just like those who protested our entrance into WWII. I just wish he'd shut his mouth. Then again, every time he opens his mouth, it gives me reason to laugh...




 
Turkey's mistake
A vote of confidence for parliament's vote of rejection:

Istanbul stock exchange plunges after parliament rejects US troops

update: A cartoon sums it up at coxandforkum.com.




Monday, March 03, 2003
 
Pop Quiz

Can you guess who said the following? No cheating!

"Once over there I felt extremely patriotic. Here are these people, from 18-year-olds to military veterans, enduring real duress for the cause of peace. I don't ever want to play for a regular audience again, only military folks who are starving for music."

Yep, it's none other than the sequined-wearing, Bush-bashing Sheryl Crow. Only that attitude applied to Clinton's Kosovo war, when she visited troops with Ms. Clinton in 1998. I thought "War Is Not The Answer", Sheryl. What has changed her tune? And what about her intense desire to only play for "military folks"? Your plane to Qatar awaits you....




 
Harsh? Define Harsh...
Saddam Hussein's scientific adviser, Lt. Gen. Amer al-Saadi, speaks of the "destruction" of the Al Samoud missiles, and the reasons the Iraqi regime won't show pictures... heaven forbid they take "harsh" action against the Iraqi people:

Al-Saadi indicated was not an easy thing for Iraq to do. He said Iraq won't let anyone see photographs or video images of the missile destruction - despite the potential impact on world opinion - because it would be too bitter for the Iraqi people to watch.
"It is too harsh. It is unacceptable," he said somberly. "That's why we have released no pictures."

What is more harsh and unacceptable than living your life under the terrorism and torture of Saddam's regime? The only thing that will be harsh for the Iraqi people is the realization that our pacifist poodle "allies" will buy into Saddam's game yet again, and attempt to block America's efforts to free them once and for all. That is a harsh reality, indeed.




 
Here I go....
Okay, I'm giving this blog thing a whirl. Since there is so much to say about the world around me, and nobody who really wants to listen to my rants, we'll see if this makes me feel better. Before investing in a domain and a hosted website, I thought I'd put myself to the test first... let's see how long this lasts!