Wednesday, February 28, 2007
About this whole stock market thing.
See, I always thought that for an American, the Chinese market losing 9 percent of its value is supposed to be a good thing. I'm supposed to cheer when Chinese businessmen are throwing themselves off the roof of their skyscrapers. When your enemy loses, you gain-you know- that sort of thing.
So how come the American stock market does not gain 500 points instead of losing 500 points? WTF? I just don't get that.
Oh and please, spare me that whole globalization, interconnected, world is flat, global economy thing. I'm old fashioned, you know. A simple man. I want Americans to win, and every one else to bend down on their knees and acknowledge that fact. That is the order of things.
I worked on my income tax last night. As I was finishing up my various schedules for the investments that I have finally been able to make-freed of the shackles of a spendthrift, ne'er do well, fat pig of an ex wife-I was saying to my self, "Boy is this great. Pretty soon the market will be over 13,000 and my mutual funds are really starting to take off. Good thing, I've got that monthly investment plan in place! I'm so happy I think I'll have another beer."
So imagine my surprise when I wake up this morning, slightly hung over, stumbling out of the bedroom, make the coffee, and sit down at the computer to
Yes, yes, I know its never a loss if you don't sell and the market always rebounds. This is a : a) correction b)a corrective consolidation or c) the beginning of a world wide recession and good time to invest in real estate. Pick one. There will be a test at the end of week.
Gordon Gekko: Where the hell are you? I am losing MILLIONS! You got me into this company and sure as hell better get me out or the only job you'll have on the Street is SWEEPING IT! You hear me, Fox?
Bud Fox: You once told me, don't get emotional about stock. Don't! The bid is 16 1/2 and going down. As your broker, I advise you to take it.
Gordon Gekko: Yeah. Well you TAKE IT!
Gordon Gekko: *Right in the ass you fucking scumbag cocksucker!*
Bud Fox: It's two minutes to closing, Gordon. What do you want to do? Decide.
Just another ducky day in the neighborhood..................
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
A turn around rantville
While making my morning sojourn around bloggerville I stumbled across this little tidbit at Pen and Sword. Reporting from London's Sunday Times:
Some of America’s most senior military commanders are prepared to resign if the White House orders a military strike against Iran, according to highly placed defence and intelligence sources…
…“There are four or five generals and admirals we know of who would resign if Bush ordered an attack on Iran,” a source with close ties to British intelligence said.
“There is simply no stomach for it in the Pentagon, and a lot of people question whether such an attack would be effective or even possible.”
ROFLMAO! Ho ho, he he.......excuse me while I catch my breath........
Going further in the post:
From the sound of things, a majority of the top Pentagon brass thinks a strike on Iran would be a disastrous failure, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates seems to agree with that view. Mr. Bush's chief ally overseas, British Prime Minister Tony Blair, is on record as saying it would not "be right to take military action against Iran."
Yea, that's rich, expecting this crowd of flag and general officers to actually do something that smacks of sticking up for their Soldiers and Sailors. Standing on principle about the misuse and misdirection of already strained US force structure in yet another conflict. A little much to hope for, don't you think?
Besides the fact that a fair number of these same flags might actually agree with the powers that be that this is a wise thing to do, and at the end of the day they may be right, when-in the last 15 years- has anyone seen a flag officer stand up and actually do something positive for his Soldiers and Sailors and Airmen. Not very often that's for sure.
Oh of course these pompous beings will be more than happy to turn around to their minions and lecture down to them, telling them who they can have sex with and who they cannot, who they can drink with , how much they can drink in their off duty time, and where; they will be happy to condone incredibly unfair practices in promotions and selection boards, railroad male Sailors and Midshipmen with false rape accusations, while giving female sailors a pass, cave into the whining of a politically motivated feminist lobby -concerned not a whit about military readiness- all to appease a great big bully called "diversity".
These prophets of so called ,"morality" will be happy to lecture you about the evils of slicing off a guilt free piece of tuna in (fill in the blank) while using a condom- and then pat them selves on the back for making it against the UCMJ to do so-all the while looking you in the eye and telling you that their is nothing detrimental to readiness or no violation of someone's moral code for a female Sailor to get pregnant out of wedlock with another Sailor's child.
They will look themselves in the mirror and tell themselves that they took a principled position by banning wholesale chunks of foreign real estate to their charges-something that US law does not allow them to do at home-and demand unreasonable search and seizures in violation of the 4th amendment-all so they can convince themselves that they are doing something.
These same "principled" leaders will be happy to violate an Airman's first amendment rights in order to bring more folks on board to "TEAM JESUS", ignoring the fact that at least more than a few of them probably were not choosing to go up that particular ladder. No, not they. Interfering in Soldiers and Sailors private lives- going where previously it was considered inappropriate-that bothers them not one whit.
However, to object to the National Command Authority mortgaging the future of the nation, the future ships, aircraft, and vehicles that they will have to use long after these "principled" flags are gone-all to save money that may or may not be used to buy other equipment-that bothers their conscience not a bit. They have no trouble sleeping at night after having signed the orders that will put Soldiers in harms way for over a year, or demanded that hard working Sailors make TWO, count them TWO, six month cruises in the space of 18 months. No, they are content. Secure in the knowledge that they have kept them from enjoying any time off they may get during those deployments by enacting General Order #1, liberty restrictions, and empowering the "buddy police" to keep anyone from going off exploring on their own.
Do the right thing for the nation? Not a chance. Meddle unwarrantedly in servicemen's private lives-all the while enforcing a double standard between men and women to appease a group of feminists? That they can and will do. And they will meet in their plush meeting rooms and blue tile spaces and pat themselves on the back, congratulating themselves on how they did the "principled" thing to restore truth, justice, and the American way.
Ah once was not so. However those days have come and gone. They believe that times have changed-because they allowed it to change and not necessarily for the better-all the while smiling, remembering the fun that they got to have, but can no longer be shared with the younger generation.
So they will make outrageous statements of fealty, allowing the once valued institutions they served to shrink in significance. Have no fear however, because they can rest easy knowing that the few remaining souls they lead will have had the proper moral instruction. Despite the fact that the institution they serve is devoted to the collective pursuit of the biggest immorality on the planet, the organized mass killing of one's fellow human beings, they will be content to know that they accepted higher direction and taught what should have been taught elsewhere. The flame they signed on to protect-the Constitution and the rights it provides- will nonetheless be allowed to diminish in intensity. However they can be happy, they stood for "principled leadership".
Had to get that off my chest- we now return you to the normal frivolity.
Monday, February 26, 2007
Meanwhile back at home.........
Its been a busy week here in Japan. To start with Japan launched a spy satellite into orbit. Proving the old Ronald Reagan adage, trust your American allies, but leave yourself an independent way to see what the heathen Chinee are up to.........
Courtesy of Japan Probe, here is a video of the H2A rocket launch:
You ain't trying, if you ain't spying!
Did you watch the Oscars? Sadly, Rinko Kikuchi got beat out by someone else who shall remain nameless here. You can't deny though that she looked HOT in that gown-she can have my baby-and I predict a great future for her. I have not seen the movie, Babel, however she seems like she did a great job playing her role. The good news is that it will open up opportunities here and over there for her. Ganbaremashou!
Speaking of the Oscars, AL Gore is getting fat!
However, he is not putting weight from eating any of Peco-chan's creations. Peco-chan, if you do not know, is the symbol of the Fujiya Cake store chain after:
Earlier this month, the major sweets maker was
caught with its finger in the pie, so to speak, after it was found to have really taken the cake and been less than healthy with its hygiene practices.
And immediately all eyes turned toward Peko-chan, the icon created in 1950, whose statues stand outside most of Fujiya's cake stores located across Japan and whose face adorns packages containing the company's flagship Milky candies.
Now, the perennially 6-year-old Peko-chan -- known for her cheeky, licking-her-lips smile -- s most likely going to spearhead the biggest battle in Fujiya's 97-year history as it tries to make sure it doesn't lose too much dough with its reputation pasted and 900 of its stores shut down.
Better be careful, she might have to take up a new line of work-like becoming a hostess.
Speaking of THAT and under the category of oops, that was not supposed to happen; in Miyazki prefecture, 東国原 英夫, Higashikokubaru Hideo-also Known as Sonomanma Higashi. He is a Japanese comedian who was all over the TV news today. Seems that one of the weekly tabloids snapped pictures of not just one, but TWO female reporters leaving his house. What is the big deal you ask? Well Higashi was elected the govenor of Miyazki Prefecture in January replacing former governor Tadahiro Ando, who resigned and is under arrest over bid rigging. He uses his official name (Hideo Higashikokubaru) as governor of Miyazaki. He denied every thing in an interview I watched on TV at lunch time, but it was interesting, he adjusted his tie 9 times while being asked questions by a noted TV personality. This scandal is not going away anytime soon, so more to follow.
As an aside, don't you think he looks like OJ? A Japanese version of OJ?
You may have missed it but the 22nd was Takeshima Day:
The poster says in Japanese: Feburary 22, is Takeshima day. Takeshima is Nihon's proper territory.
Now if you are Korean, or sympathetic thereto-you find this picture less than amusing since Korea believes the island is theirs and should go by the name of Dokto. Its just a bunch of rocks, no one lives there-but its the symbolism that counts, right?
This next story is kind of dated, having been reported in several outlets, but its still worth telling.
Meet Prince Pickles:
As reported in the IHT:
TOKYO: Prince Pickles, a perky cartoon character with saucer-round eyes, big dimples and tiny, boot-clad feet, poses in front of tanks, rappels from helicopters and shakes hands with smiling Iraqis.
The cutesy icon hardly calls to mind the Japanese military that conquered and pillaged its way across Asia during World War II, and that is just the way the country’s leaders want it.
As Japan sheds its postwar pacifism and gears up to take a higher military profile in the world, it is enlisting cadres of cute characters and adorable mascots to put a gentle, harmless sheen on its deployments.
“Prince Pickles is our image character because he’s very endearing, which is what Japan’s military stands for,” said Shotaro Yanagi, a Defense Agency official. “He’s our mascot and appears in our pamphlets and stationery.”
Such characters have long been used in Japan to win hearts and minds and to soften the image of authority.
That may be, but from where I sit, all that character says to me is, "Here, come kick my ass!". Which is probably what Abdul in the graphic is thinking as he makes a mental note where to tell his Shiite buddy to put the next car bomb............
As GI Korea pointed out Korea's mascot at least looks like he is ready to kick some ass:
Still does not hold a candle to this one though:
Now that's a mascot!
The governor of Tokyo, Shintaro Ishihara has decided not let himself be upstaged by Clint Eastwood. He's produced new film that honors the kamikaze pilots who died in the final days of the Pacific War:
From an article in The Scotsman:
TOKYO (Reuters) - Families weep and young girls wave flags or offer gifts of cherry blossom as fresh-faced pilots set off to almost certain death in a new film about Japan's "kamikaze" suicide missions during World War Two.
"I Go To Die For You", set to be released in Japan in May, is something of a dream come true for 74-year-old nationalist writer-turned-politician Shintaro Ishihara, who waited years for financing to get his script produced.
Ishihara, widely tipped to win his third term as Tokyo governor in April, based the film on interviews with Tome Torihama, who ran a restaurant close to Chiran air base on the southernmost main island of Kyushu, where the young men were trained.
The kindly Torihama, played in the film by well-known actress Keiko Kishi, became a mother figure for many of the trainees, most of whom were still in their teens or early twenties when they were sent to their deaths.
Some entrusted her with farewell letters to be given to their families, while one promised to return to her restaurant as a firefly after his death.
"We can't stop them from going. We can't comfort them. All we can do is pray," Torihama says in the film.
When she died in 1992, Ishihara called for Torihama to be publicly honoured, but the government spurned the idea, inspiring him to push ahead with a movie based on her memories.
Finally, Norika Fujiwara, who I have blogged about more than a couple of times; finally got married:
Sunday, February 25, 2007
Cheech and Chong politics...........
Chong is up late, smoking a joint, watching an old war movie...........
Japanese Admiral: "You will get in your aircraft. You will take off, find the American aircraft carrier. You will then, dive straight into it, killing yourself and every one on board. Any questions? Yes?"
Sailor Sato: "Are you out of your fucking mind?"
That is the question the rank and file members of both the House and Senate should be asking the Democratic leadership today. As I have noted here and here, Madame Speaker seems hell bent to pick a fight she has no way to win-and in the process will shatter what little credibility she has-just to act out an understandable petulance against George Bush. She does not have the numbers or the political strength to pull off what she says she wants to do. Trying to pass a resolution to undo the war authorization is the legislative equivalent of closing the barn door after the horse has escaped. It's pointless. Furthermore, in the end it will make her and her compatriots an accomplice to the crime.
George Will wrote a good summary of this a few days ago:
Indiscriminate criticism of President George W. Bush is an infectious disease. Some conservatives seem to have caught it, but congressional Democrats might be crippled by it.......There are huge problems with this course of action, however. Besides the fact that it risks alienating the same voters who gave them a majority in Congress-a group of voters Nixon called 30 years ago "The Silent Majority"-it runs the risk of ending progress in any other areas. The silent majority are real Americans who care about the country, want to earn a good living, and worry about the increasing stridency of both political parties. They are also very concerned about the current trends of globalization and what it means for them and their livelihood. They sense, deep down, that the Iraq war is draining the nation of resources it needs to prosper in gloomy new era that is the 21'st Century. They want to win there, but they wonder how that can be done with a population that either can't, or won't, move beyond tribalism and the petty quarrels of a failed and apostate religion to advance their society. They are befuddled that, when given an immense gift from the United States, the Iraqis choose to wallow in blood feuds instead of seizing a great opportunity.
Regarding Iraq, the Democratic-controlled Congress could do what Democrats say a Democratic president would do: withdraw U.S. forces. A president could simply order that; Congress could defund military operations in Iraq. Congressional Democrats are, however, afraid to do that because they lack the courage of their (professed) conviction that Iraq would be made tranquil by withdrawal of U.S. forces.
So they aim to hamstring the president with restrictions on the use of the military. The restrictions ostensibly are concerned with preparedness but actually are designed to prevent deployments to Iraq.
They did not, however, elect a Democratic majority to create a constitutional crisis however:
Last Saturday, Senate Republicans blocked a vote on a resolution disapproving the president's policy because Democrats would not permit a vote on a resolution stating that the Senate will not cut off funds for troops in the field. That resolution would have committed the Senate to not taking the path that many Democrats already are tiptoeing down.
Suppose Democrats write their restrictions on the use of forces into legislation that funds the war. And suppose the president signs the legislation but ignores the restrictions, calling them unconstitutional usurpation's of his powers as commander in chief. What could Democrats do? Cross First Street NE and ask the Supreme Court to compel the president to acquiesce in congressional micromanagement of a war? The court probably would refuse to get involved on the grounds that this is a "political
The court has held that some constitutional controversies should be settled by the government's political -- meaning elected -- branches. In 1962, the court said that a case involves a political question when there is:
" . . . textually demonstrable constitutional commitment of the issue to a coordinate political department; or a lack of judicially discoverable and manageable standards for resolving it; or the impossibility of deciding without an initial policy determination of a kind clearly for nonjudicial discretion; or the impossibility of a court's undertaking independent resolution without expressing lack of the respect due coordinate branches of government; or an unusual need for unquestioning adherence to a political decision already made; or the potentiality of embarrassment from multifarious pronouncements by various departments on one question."
In that welter of criteria there are reasons that the court will not rescue congressional Democrats from facing the logic of their posturing. They lack the will to exercise their clearly constitutional power to defund the war. And they lack the power to achieve that end by usurping the commander in chief's powers to conduct a war.
That's the party of Fags and Feminists these days, however. Given a golden opportunity-they blow it every time. In the process, the strengthen the Republican slime machine and leave the majority-the Silent Majority-left out in the cold. And it still leaves 140,000+ American troops stuck in a hell hole named Iraq.
As the good Mr Will said, "They can spend this year fecklessly and cynically enacting restrictions that do not restrict. Or they can legislate decisive failure of the Iraq operation -- withdrawal -- thereby acquiring conspicuous complicity in a defeat that might be inevitable anyway. A Hobson's choice? No, Nancy Pelosi's and Harry Reid's."
A pox on both parties!
Friday, February 23, 2007
A map of February
Fast forward a bit. Its Friday, you have had a hard day at work. The drive home doesn't help it any. You arrive in the driveway, or you come out of the train filled with stress. All you can think about is getting in the door and flopping on the couch.
But first, you head for the refrigerator,time for a beer! And not just any beer, but one of the back of the refrigerator beers. The bottle has a light layer of ice on it. Kind of like this:
Now, imagine if you will that as you twist off the top, and take that first cold, tasty sip, there-out of the corner of your eye-you see, hanging on the side of the refrigerator-a map of February. And above the squares, you see a picture. A picture like this:
Ah yes, it just makes the second and subsequent tastes of that beer taste sooooo good. Well lucky you, because now you can go visit Gina and order one of these calendars for your self. The best part is that buying this "map of February ( and March, April, May......)" can be chalked up to a good cause! Don't take my word for it, let her explain it for herself:
Over the past year, I have heard and read incredible stories about the injured soldiers returning from military service. Their hardest battles have just begun, as they attempt to recover in Veterans Hospitals all across America . I was touched by each story, and knew that I had to try to do something to help our hospitalized Vets. I came up with an idea to recreate a World War II style pin-up calendar that would have the dual purpose of raising money for programs that support hospitalized Veterans, and also serve as a GIFT for each and every Veteran, as they recover in a Veterans Hospital.
Best part of the deal-its a tax deductible donation! For a good cause. So even if you have a
It beats looking at 'Hello Kitty' pictures!
Now if you will excuse me, I think I need a cigarette!
Thursday, February 22, 2007
Some good reads
I've mentioned from time to time that there are several Skippy's out there. There is myself of course. There is Skippy the Bush Kangaroo. There is also, and this is the subject of this post a Canadian Skippy that can actually write and who (after reading me...) you should put on your daily read list. Lately he has been on a roll. I've been reading him off and on for about a year and a half now. Just good clean fun.
His writing has a certain sharpness to it and if you are easily offended by the F-bomb, he may not be your cup of tea. However if you have, as I do, a certain fondness for off the wall humor, coupled with a pretty accurate awareness of history-then Lil Skippy is your man. Love him or hate him, he'll make you laugh. Unless you just have no sense of humor at all-a sadly growing phenomenon these days...........
Here are some examples of the things I wish I could think of:
Writing about George W. Bush:
For the first time since 1952, neither party is running an incumbent for the nomination. This means that it's open season on 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and its current occupant. This is further complicated by the fact that Bush has an approval rating only slightly higher than, say, O.J Simpson.
Bush is widely viewed by not only the public, but much of the political class, as being a spendthrift and perhaps the most incompetent war president in American history. If you'd like to gauge for yourself just how toxic President Bush is politically, pay really close attention to 423 candidates seeking to win his job and note just how often any of them say in public "You know, if I'm elected, I'm going to follow Bush's policies. To the letter. Electing me will be just like giving W. a third term."
Just know that you'll be in for a really long wait. Promising to be "just like George Bush" is to elective politics what promising to be "just like Ted Bundy" is to a first date.
He takes a funny and sarcastic look at the Astronaut Nowak case:
Something else occurred to me as the news of Lisa's arrest made it way around the world. People seemed so ..... shocked. Try as I might, I couldn't understand what all the excitement was about.
So I did what I always do when I try to understand the reaction to a given event, I reviewed the available facts.
We know that Nowak, a 43-year old seperated mother of three, very much wanted to fuck her fellow astronaut, 41-year old Navy Commander, William Oefelein. Nowak felt spurned when she discovered that Oefelein may or may not have been tasting the Tang of one Colleen Shipman.
Lisa decided to do what pretty much anyone would do under those circumstances. She put on a wig and a pair of diapers; loaded her car with a new steel mallet, knife, rubber tubing, large garbage bags, pepper spray and a B.B gun, and embarked on a fantastic journey to win her man. Nowak found Shipman at Orlando International Airport, confronted her and doused her with the pepper spray.
The Man, having nothing better to do, involved Himself in the triangle and ruined Ms. Nowak's love life. Charges of attempted kidnapping, attempted vehicle burglary with battery, destruction of evidence and battery were brought against her. When an Orlando judge saw the rightness of Lisa's ways and granted her bail, The Main filed an additional charge of attempted murder. And that's pretty much where we are now.
Having reviewed the facts, I still found myself haunted by a question that needed answering, "How exactly is this news?" "Doesn't this sort of thing happen to everyone," I wondered. "Or is it just me?"
He has nailed the issue of Stem Cell research:
The Japanese have recently accomplished something I previously thought impossible - the achieved the trifecta of things that drive religious people insane. That trifecta is as follows; the destruction of human embryos, giant breasts, and things that make skippy smile.
The ancestors of the Hirohito Empire have done something so wonderful and so grand that even the Chinese and Korean victims of their savagery might well reconsider their opinions of the Land of the Rising Sun. It takes a lot to make someone forget something as horrible as the Rape of Nanking. Even more for the Japanese to admit to having done it. It has to be something so full of special wonderfulness as to defy description in any language comprehensible by humans.
Well, I have give it up to the Japanese. They did just that.
What did they do that all of God's children can join hands in a 1970s Coca-Cola commercial-style moment of celebration, you ask?
They figured out a way to make stem cells do something useful. Something that could very well outweigh conservative objectives that the ressurected Christ is laying dormant in some Chattanooga feritly clinic's petri dish.
I have this theory that conservatives have been against stem-cell research because all it has thus far accomplished is to make Michael J. Fox shake with indignation and campaign for Missouri Democrats. Everyone feels badly that Muhhamad Ali has so horribly suffered from the ravages of Pakinson's Disease, but we all know that if he could, he'd be hold a press conference conscientiously objecting to the Iraq War. And he'd probably be the Greatest of All Times at that, too.
Thus far, there really hasn't been anything in stem-cell research for conservatives.
Now there is. In the very near future, stem-cells will grow big tits!
Finally this week, he has posted a pretty good analysis of the Barack Obama campaign:
There's another problem with going nasty on Obama. His numbers go off of the fucking charts with white broads!.........
It should go without saying that this phenomenon drives Hannity up the goddamn wall, but there's a more important point here.
President Bush's re-election victory in the popular vote (as opposed to the Electoral College,where gay marriage fetchingly saved the day) rested entirely on the backs of white women who were very much afraid of Abu Musab al-Zarquawi cutting their fucking heads off. Zarquawi might be gone now, but I'm certain that anyone - Republican or Democrat - who holds the blade to Harry Belafonte's throat will pay a very steep price for it on election day.
With Iraq in the shitter, the "security moms" are back on the market. And they're really not looking for Mr. Goodbar. An attack on their man will be perceived as an attack on them. It seems to me that gutting Obama is one of the very few fun things in life that is all negative and no positive.
If you have to break out the ugly stick, you don't do so for someone who can't win, yet would still be a general election asset. You put it in reserve for a real threat to your ambitions. You save it for Al Gore.
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
SNN reporter, " Were you concerned about the safety of the hostages?"
YPD Chief, " But of course, this man already has a history of shooting people and is known to have a short temper. We were really concerned for a while."
SNN Reporter, " How did he get so many hostages so quickly?"
YPD Chief, " Well, it appears he had help. Dozens of black suited thugs-wearing earphones, forced the base police to zone off several streets , parking lots, and entrances, to prevent traffic from flowing. Anyone caught walking on the street, in uniform, was immediately whisked away to the USS Kitty Hawk Quarterdeck and forced to stand with herd in hangar bay 1 for hours on end."
SNN Reporter, " Any idea why he came here?"
YPD Chief, " We are not sure. We had hoped to interview the suspect, but after his demands were met, he moved away briskly. There was great concern on our part that one of the hostages might provoke an outburst by asking about some guy named Libby, or some outfit named Halliburton-apparently this hostage taker is known to associate with famous American criminals- but that was fortunately averted."
SNN Reporter, "Where did he go to?"
YPD Chief, " In his ransom demand, he wanted to be taken by helicopter to Tokyo. As he boarded the chopper, one of the hostages heard him muttering something to the effect of, "Sushi? I don't need no stinkin' sushi! Give me some Goddamned Kobe beef!"
SNN Reporter, " So there you have it ladies and gentlemen. A brazen act of hostage taking right under the nose of the Japanese and American authorities here. Even now, with the blockades on the streets removed, traffic is barely returning to normal. Back to you at FEC HQ........"
If John McCain can ......
Sen. McCain is now saying the same thing that I was saying two years ago:
"We are paying a very heavy price for the mismanagement- that's the kindest word I can give you-of Donald Rumsfeld, of this war," the Arizona senator told an overflow crowd of more than 800 at a retirement community near Hilton Head Island. "The price is very, very heavy and I regret it enormously."
"I think that Donald Rumsfeld will go down in history as one of the worst secretaries of defense in history," McCain said to applause.
Here at Far East Cynic HQ, we've always been a couple years ahead of the trends. I'm just prescient that way..............
Just to be fair though, I said Donald Rumsfeld was among the 3 worst Secretaries of Defense, with the other two being Charlie Wilson and Robert McNamara.
Now its time to say goodbye....
Col. Blimp is going to be picking up and leaving. Exactly as I predicted, Tony Blair is pulling British troops out of Iraq in 2007 just a couple months prior to his own departure from 10 Downing street.
I love it when I am right!
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Revolutions and Resolutions
What is objectionable, what is dangerous, about [Republican and Democratic] extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents. -Robert F. Kennedy
That quote applies to both sides of the aisle, I think. It particularly applies to the
Over the course of the next two years I think many of these Republicans will regret their decision of support for this Democrat resolution as they realize the extent of its impact. Their careers most likely will end in the same undignified manner as Judas ended his own life. Speaking for myself I can say this without hesitation, there are now seventeen pieces of silver in our party historically represented by red, and I promise you I shall not be colorblind in 08.
You know the type-morons. Lets try to stick to the facts shall we?
I've watched the Congressional debate over the past week with a combination of bemusement and disgust. Bemusement at how both sides can work themselves into a tizzy when the executive still has a lot of cards to play and the Congress only has a few-a balance that was given away years ago in the ascension of the "Imperial Presidency" and strengthened when
The debate over the NON-BINDING resolution and the reaction to its predictable defeat in the Senate by the Democratic leadership are nothing short of ridiculous, and depressing. The Republican rhetoric is equally histrionic, especially when they continue to say that the apocalypse will occur if we all don't quietly follow George W. Bush over a cliff into the abyss of war without end in Iraq. At least no end until January 20, 2009.
I think it would be more helpful if, instead of continuing to mouth platitudes on both sides about "supporting the troops", both sides could step back from the board for a minute and review the facts.
Fact 1) George W. Bush has chosen to ignore the recommendations of a commission he appointed, to go with the recommendations of the same little group of
Fact 2) The United States is hedging its bets with the surge because the amount of troops committed is: a) not really a surge-more like a kidnapping of troops who deserve to go home and b)not really enough to get the job over with on the timetable the American people would like to see. A surge-by my definition-would involve a lot more forces AND it would involve Iraqi cities being reduced to smoldering ruins Ala la Dresden. So that all Iraqis would understand once for all that they are in this together. They either fix the problem or they go away.
Fact 3) The people of the United States have used up their patience with the war in Iraq and in particular have no confidence int he way the George W. Bush and the team that he put into place are running it. That is what the voters really said in November and the Democrats would be wise to remember it. Because what that previous statement really says is that public opinion will turn again in a heartbeat if the Democratic majority goes, legislatively, into areas that are reckless and are perceived as being self destructive. Rep Murtha-would be wise to remember that. After all, his premature statements probably cost the House 15 Republican votes that could have been theirs and in the Senate probably 4 Republicans more who would have voted against the President, had he not prematurely opened his mouth.
What last week's flurry of activity was really about, in my humble opinion, is the frustration of the Democrats to be unable to do what their compatriots in England can do-namely force a vote of "no confidence" in the President and his Cabinet and therefore bring down the government. The founding fathers were wise not to include that little provision into the Constitution, knowing full well that the trade off was that if the nation got a bad President-as it has now-it would be stuck with him for four long years. Or eight years, when the opposition party is stupid enough to nominate someone who allows himself to get Swift-boated out of an election he could have won, had they had a man of stature and reason to nominate. That will be available in the future, but for now, I'm sticking to my guns. The election of 2004 was the Democrats to lose and they did.
Rather than oppose the surge, Democrats should embrace it, learn to love it, and use it, to highlight each and every failing that has been the foreign and defense policy that has been the Bush administration. As I also wrote last month:
Consider: Instead of passing resolutions or whining again and again about the "surge" something that they cannot stop before fall of 2007, they could be VERY effectively attacking the President on his flanks. If the Democrats had half an inkling about how to get real things accomplished they would be sitting and waiting for him to submit his military budget.
The pursuit of a non binding resolution was meaningless and those types of activities are well not to be pursued. Had I been Speaker Pelosi, and I thank God in heaven I am not, I would have not attacked the surge. I would have attacked its author. Namely it would have been better to propose a resolution to censure the President.
Wait a minute, you may ask, "no president has been censured since Andrew Jackson and besides Russ Feingold proposed that in 2005 and got nowhere with it". True on both counts. However, Feingold's problem was more one of timing, e.g. the public attitude had not turned. And as for the lack of the use of the censure since 1834......well good ideas take a while to come back. Plus for at least 80 years, machine politics in the US prevented such a vote from occurring. After all the filibuster was invented in 1841 soon after Jackson's censure. ( which was expunged by the Senate in 1837). (For foreign readers, the US Senate has long had a tradition allowing unlimited debate on a subject-the House has no such tradition-and it allows the minority party to stifle a vote on a subject by wearing them down). No matter what the outcome, the use of censure against Bush would have a two fold affect-it would have attacked the CEO who ran the adventure-without attacking the adventure (read:war) itself.
It would not have exposed the Democrats to the withering criticism that they were trying to undermine the war because properly worded, it would have attacked the timing of the surge-it's 4 years late-rather than the idea itself. Then again, the Repugs would simply have gone back to their tired old argument, namely that failure to blindly accept the President's tired ideas somehow constitutes treason.
The censure would not have been binding, nonetheless it would have been a strong statement and by what I can find does not require a 3/5 majority to pass. It might have been filibustered to death, then again it would have offered the voters in favor some plausible deniablity. One could legitimately argue it was not after the current execution of the war.
As for the rest-well my argument from last month still remains. Phrased coarsely, it amounts to: " OK Bonehead, you love these Goddamn Iraqis so much, you are now going to be called to account to pay the bill for this war. You want a surge? Then you are going to : pay these troops properly, equip them properly and stop cutting end strength that is desperately need. You are going to provide veterans the benefits they have earned that your administration has, to date, refused to pay for and you are going to do more to involve the nation in the effort".
Essentially the strategy would be that of multiple betting rounds in poker without giving the President a chance to call.
Pay raise for 2008-double to 6 %. Very supportable since the Military Coalition has pointed out that Presidents budget falls short of the pay gap by about 4 percent.
Capitalize on the real cuts the administration has made in veterans benefits and health care-one could use the latest WP story as a starting point-or the VA budget. One could also point out the numerous cases of troops having to purchase on their own the right equipment, because the US procurement establishment is broken.
Fully fund concurrent receipt for disability and retirement.
Demand the Army field full up Humvee and other vehicle protection items.
Place a hold on any ends strength reductions in the services. Furhtermore, one could very easily attack the restructuring of the reserves and the requirement for the "back door draft" (something that the current SECDEF is trying to end too).
Finally, do not approve any increase in the federal debt ceiling. Since the Bush administration is wedded to tax cuts at the expense of any thing else it would be forced to make some real choices-or veto the budget. Which would allow the Democrats to point out who really was supporting the troops-and who was trying to screw them over-while never directly attacking the surge.
But what if the surge works you ask? Well, first of all, the odds of it working are low. Even so, point out that it took the administration 4 years and how much treasure and lives lost to come to that conclusion. Still a good way to put the "decider" in a box.
Seems to me that would be a hell of a lot more effective than what the majority in Congress is doing now.
Even lame duck Chief Executives have a lot of power. Congress only has some blunt instruments to wield. So its more prudent to make the President stop his pet war project. That's the real message the voters sent in November by the way, namely that GW's time was up and it was time for HIM to stop his war. Not to make Congress stop it. The path I outlined above would allow the Congress to keep the pressure on while doing something that REALLY supported the troops in harms way.
Makes too much sense-which is why the Democrats won't do it. Gotta appeal to the party base right?
Monday, February 19, 2007
The flight back was not the worst I've ever had, but definately not the best. The plane was full. Looking around the gate lobby were lots and lots of cute, curvaceous, young Japanese women returning from holiday. Do I get to sit next to one of them? No, instead I get seated next to two rather rotund, Sari wearing, women who were on a return journey to Hyperbad India. We had a pleasant conversation, since I have never been to India, I asked them a lot of questions about life there. Turns out they were Christians coming back from a 25 day "leadership seminar" in Maui. Guess the Christian church in India must not be hurting for money. Your collection offerings at work!
I felt sorry for them though. They had a long way to go to get home. Hawaii to Narita, Narita to Singapore, Singapore to Chennai, Chennai to Hyperbad. Cattle class on JAL/JAL partners all the way. That's one tough trip-made doubly so it seems because they didn't drink-and they had a 9 hour layover in Singapore.
Upon arriving at Narita, I discovered that my luggage had gone to Osaka. Thanks guys! Thanks a lot! Get my luggage back today? "So sorry-have to be shipped by overnight Takyubin (express shipping company). Perhaps tomorrow night." -GRRRRR!!!
Another 2 hours on trains and I am finally back home and in the sweet embrace of the S.O. Except she has a cold and really does not feel well. Get her a blanket and some pillows so she can rest on the couch. Make myself some dinner and finally say to hell with and go to bed. Wipe this day off the books.
There is lots to talk about tomorrow though. Been reading through the blogs I regularly stalk-I may have to get out the old Louisville Slugger to set some people straight!
Till then-Happy Day!
Correction! E @ L informs me it is not Hyperbad. It is Hyderabad. Which, he informs me is-hyperbad. Its all Hindi to me.................
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Jumping across the pond.
Its time to go home. I've had too many of these:
And none of these!
I do have a draft of a post on privacy and how it is being taken away bit by bit, but it needs some more tweaking that will have to wait till I get home. In the meantime E @ L has found the secret of happiness...........Ja ne!
Friday, February 16, 2007
The anti-romance web site........
My sentiments exactly..............
Thursday, February 15, 2007
The word on China......
That ought to clear that up.
Wrapped up work this morning. Computers cleaned, reports submitted, listened to mind numbing "lessons learned" (which are almos always the same ones from last year)...then its time for:
Slide on out in the PM for a sojurn to Kaneohe and its beautiful course along the ocean. As for my game the less said the better.
Back to Nippon this weekend so posting will continue to be short and sweet.
We did make a sojurn down to Waikiki last night-basically to look for beer and women who did not have dates for Valetines day. Found the beer, did incredibly poorly on finding the second item. Oh well, 7 years in Asia have destroyed my reflexes on good opening lines anyway.
Oh, but in the day........... mid 80's-Miramar O-Club. Now that's a fine memory!
Here is a question though.......why do people think chili dogs are meant to be eaten with a knife and fork? Got a chili dog at the turn and it came out smothered in chili. Second time this has happened here. Remember folks-just a little mustard, a little chili and balance it out with onions. Half the fun is cramming that little delicay into your mouth. Kind of like this:
Times up-it seems the library closes early tonight. More later!
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
Always in command
Courtesy of Steeljaw Scribe is an neat little educational video about the smaller, much much more capable version, of the AWACS. The largest aircraft to fly on and off of the carrier today. These guys do with 5 people what it takes the Air Force 20 to do.
Which sums it up nicely- FLY NAVY!
Cheat and retreat............
Spurred by the Chinese the Six Party talks have tentatively inked a deal to stop DPRK nuclear production. The key word is tentative, because the deal still has to get the approval of the respective governments-especially those who will have to fork over fuel oil-however as others have noted it will probably be approved.
And in about 2 years it will ultimately fail.
I'm still very busy with work on this trip-got about 2 more days to go, however I did want to comment very briefly.
I have mixed feelings about the issue of North Korea. I think China really pushed them to settle because they do not want a confrontation with the US, and at the same time they do not want North Korea to implode. There were some indicators that life was not well in the hermit kingdom. Particulalry when they kept beating the point about getting fuel oil-well there has to be a reason for that. China does not want Korea to unify-they would prefer to have the DPRK as a "buffer" state. Its a position that I have never understood. If I were a Chinese leader I would want to get rid of the baggage the Kim Jong Il represents. A "solution" to the division of Korea would provide them with a prime excuse to lobby for reductions of US troops in Asia. That would support Chinese long term goals and it would give them a stronger hand vis a vis Taiwan. Keeping Kim Jong Il and the North virutally guarantees a large US military presence in the region. Which is good for the rest of the region but not for China.
One other thing. Its clear that in this case, the weight of the Iraq War probably helped the Americans come around to a position that just two years ago they said they never would accept. The US is already in 4 wars, it really does not want to start another one. Especially one that would kill a lot of Koreans and Americans. From GI Korea:
President Bush hasn’t given this deal an okay yet, but it appears that the Bush Administration so eager for the appearance of a foreign policy success they are willing to go the way of President Clinton and trust the North Koreans to uphold to this deal and work towards future disarmament. I have said before I credit Clinton with trying diplomacy even though it failed, but if President Bush agrees to this deal he has no excuses for when it ultimately fails.
The thing is President Bush will probably be out of office when this thing fails just like Clinton was. The North Koreans will uphold the deal and shut down their reactor, but they will continue to use their discussion and delay tactics to hold up the talks to dismantle their half dozen nukes they have now. While all the discussion is going on, North Korea will use the influx of cash they will be receiving from the international community for their "freeze" to advance their ballistic missile program to be able to handle a nuclear warhead that can reach the US mainland.
Mark my words if the US agrees to this "freeze", in 2010 under the next US president we will be discussing this same thing again when North Korea kicks out the inspectors and demands more blackmail, but by this time they will be able to threaten the US and neighboring countries with nuclear weapons that can be launched on one of their ballistic missiles. The blackmail will be much steeper than it is now and it won’t be the future president’s fault, it will be this one.
Its not that I am advocating attacking North Korea-I think we do have to wait for it to fall apart-however I am not sure what the US got for its money. Except to buy time so that it can have freedom to maneuver in Iraq. In the grand scheme of things, the Korean situation is more important for the US-I've never understood GWB's fixation on Iraq-and we just don't have the flexibilty that we should have.
No more time-got to run back to work. Here are some better thoughts than mine about the "deal":
One Free Korea
More to come later this week..............
Monday, February 12, 2007
You may feel some slight discomfort.......
Sunday, February 11, 2007
Why the Pelosi aircraft thing matters..........
A couple of days ago (maybe more, the last few days have been a blur....) Tony Snow came out and defended Nancy Pelosi's request to live above her means. Dear Tony, you are wrong. This really matters.
Here is why.
The Air Force has, as a part of its assigned missions, the requirement to provide and maintain the those sparkling aircraft that say United States of America on them. Contrary to popular belief the 89th Airlift Wing, which operates these aircraft does not have an unlimited supply of them. By my count, they have about 14 aircraft of 5 type model series. While many of these aircraft were procured through the "good deal" system of being inserted into the budget, they also do have some method to the madness. They have aircraft of various types, but most of them are some variant of the Gulfstream.
Now traveling on a Gulfstream does not suck. I've traveled in one, and to borrow a phrase from Pharris Bueller, "It is so choice. If you have the means I strongly encourage you to get one."
The point is the larger aircraft are used for longer haul missions and for moving larger groups of VIPS. That is the way the system is supposed to work. Using the C-32 (a 757) for Ms Pelosi guarantees that there will be a conflcit of resources in the future. Some other delegation traveling off on a
And what will happen is that the folks in the Legislative Affairs offices will jump through hoops and other airlift assets will be found, particulalry if there is a reserve airlift squadron in the Chairman's district. In the end the person who gets told no, will be the working Sailor or Soldier whose unit needs to move someplace. I've seen this actually happen. Later this week I will regale you with the trip of Curt Weldon ( the guy who got beat by Joe Sestak) to North Korea. It is a sad tale of Congressional delegations, reserve politics, and micro-management. I don't have the time to post it now as the folks waiting for the computer might shoot me first. What seems to be lost in this little deal is that "Nobody rides for free", there is always an opportunity cost that is never accounted for.
Besides, she is not the only female Democrat who wants a bigger airplane:
Saturday, February 10, 2007
Drinking and living........
I don't have time to write a long post on this, but the link will take you to some good words on the subject. Every time the military tries to cross over into what should properly be a person's private life, it fails miserably to achieve the aim it is seeking.
I've got an idea, try treating people like adults. Ever think about that?
More to follow on this subject-however you can guess I think this is one hosed up idea.
For the record.....
Given the media frenzy of the last two days though, it would seem that there are plenty of men lining up to throw their "hat in the ring" for the privledge. Zsa Zsa Gabor's husband?
I've been very busy with work the last two days. They had a block party in Waikiki last night for the Pro-bowl. I was going to go, but then I made a fatal mistake. "Well, I just lay down for few minutes then get up and take a taxi."
You know the rest. Woke up about 12:30 am. Shoot. Change channels and watch the show Dogfights on the history channel. Its pretty cool. Using computer graphics they reconstructed the sinking of the Bismark. Finally decide I should get under the covers instead of on top of them.
Has there been any other news in the last 3 days. Well yes there has, but you would never know it by watching the TV news. All Anna, all the time. Call me silly, but underneath the silicone, the hair dye and the jeans there was a real person. Can't anyone show that person some respect?
Gotta run. The library police are telling me my time is up.............
Friday, February 09, 2007
Good news and bad news......
The good news (its not really good news.....) is that if you are a NASA astronaut, under indictment for attempted murder-at least your mug shot is no longer on CNN every hour on the hour.
Such is the news cycle these days. Kind of says something not good about it.
Thursday, February 08, 2007
Stephen Colbert agrees with Lex about the F-14
Where's the tanker?
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
This is why
People should be able to visit 4FoW...............
Certainly it has less complications than this.
Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.
Guess it all comes back to advice an old mentor gave me once:
"Boys, there are plenty of fish in the river. That's why you never, ever, sleep with the hired help!"
There are divorce lawyers already salivating over this:
I'll give you a tip Bill, don't use my attorney!
UPDATE!: It seems Oeferlein is not married (he's divorced....).
He will still get nailed at the drive through, somehow.
Now I am 2
Some people think I never left being a 2 year old..............
Read here to find out why I started the blog. I should have something pithy to write about my blogging experience. However I had to get up at 6 to make a 7 am bus to Incheon to travel the whole day to the US. So I don't have the time or the energy today. Maybe Nancy Pelosi should let me use her plane.
Still working to find the right "balance" between between fun and politics. I'll figure it out one of these days. Till then get a look here and here. Always time for that here!
See you on the other side! Gotta go board the plane!
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
Folding like a cheap suit.....
I wonder how much mayhem was threatened to accomplish this:
Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House,can now fly in style at your expense. Speaker Pelosi has been granted authorization to make use of military aircraft whenever she sees fit.
Lisa Sylvester reports.
LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT
(voice-over): It's clear skies for Nancy Pelosi. The Pentagon is providing the House speaker with an Air Force planelarge enough to accommodate her staff, family, supporters and members of the Californian delegation when she travels around the country.
The "money shot" quote of the story is this:
DAVID KEENE, AMERICAN CONSERVATIVE UNION: It's better than flying first-class on United or American. This gives her the opportunity to use the plane as a conference area, where she can get members of her delegation together and plot strategy or politics or talk about legislation, do whatever she wants.
Yea, well that may be. However as one who is about to travel on United Airlines tomorrow, that is not saying that much.
Now if we were talking Singapore Airlines or Cathay Pacific, now that would be different.
Oh great! Speaker Pelosi is back! Excuse us while we lock up the valuables.
This is bulls**t!
Monday, February 05, 2007
Passed without comment....
A couple of funny reads for you.
Joe Biden sends along his greetings for Black History Month and E @ L has a few choice words for Singapore Airlines.-Its funny!
For a computer junkie like me this is a bummer!
I fought the man.....
Today has been frustrating to say the least. I was supposed to go to Seoul, but I finally got a hold of my sister to find out, to my relief, that my parents are OK. The woman needs to learn how to leave a message when she calls my work!
So I spent the day engrossed in my Suez War book-which is tough to follow, I do a lot of skipping around. It was probably the same way for Anthony Eden.
Also tried to get my wireless internet to work in the room and for some reason it did not. Which is why this post will be short. After 5 to 7 OB's, I don't have the stamina for it.
Why did the man win? Because the USAF has lost it mind when it comes to prohibited we sights. They even censor google searches. I typed in " How to defeat USAF firewalls" and it blocked me. However what to me is amazing is that FOX news, the Town Hall Harlot and Lex are all allowed by USAF networks. Try to access Wonkette though.....forget about it. And my blog, well suffice it to say its not being read off of USAF servers.
Bought some DVD's today, including one of my favorite movies, A River runs through it. I love that movie and miss fly fishing that I used to do with my dad.
I can't even go to my bank on a USAF network. And when I tried to use the wireless in the room I couldn't. What the hell are these guys thinking?
Saturday, February 03, 2007
Besides freezing my face and a** off last night while stumbling back from the bars, I awoke to find that when I log into blogger it all comes up in Hangul. Talented I may be, but Korean is not a language I have attacked yet. Thank god the english come up at the bottom of the browser when I move the mouse.
I had wanted to go back to Seoul today, but some issues with my folks back home mean that I need to stay close to a phone. Nothing serious, but I need to call back and get a hold of people. Its probably just as well. I'll save money and I can still get the S.O. that genuine imitation Coach purse she wants.
Actually today is not too bad. There are even people out playing golf. I'll wait till next weekend when I will be in a warmer place.
There is some news to report. Across the Pacific, sighs of relief are being heard. The complicated shifting of the dominos appears not to be happening-which is a good thing. The continued trend to move four star preferred customers around is an area for debate, but here I think they are making a good choice. However for the guys at the Norfolk Federal Penitentary-it sucks to be you!
Damn there goes the phone! I going to hit a Hangul button that I think means publish..........we'll see.
And.... we're back. One other piece of news I noted this morning was that the Navy has given a name to the P-8A- Poseidon. I know they are supposed to name it after Greek gods but all I can think about is this.
Well that picture publish thing did not work so well...........what's Korean for ARRRGGGGHH!
Finally check out this take by John Stewart on the whole Cheney daughter, gay mom baby issue.
Friday, February 02, 2007
This ought to be fun to watch......
From today's Lou Dobbs show (which I can watch at lunch over here):
LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Democrats rode into Congress on a wave of reform. They promised to run things differently than their Republican counterparts.
REP. NANCY PELOSI, (D-CA) HOUSE SPEAKER: This all comes back to the American people. They have to have confidence that Congress is here to work in the people's interest.
SYLVESTER: House Democrats have tackled ethics and lobbying reform that would curb lawmakers' use of corporate jets to shuttle them around the country. But critics say at the same time House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been fighting to retain a perk enjoyed by her predecessor: the use of military jets for her travel. And according to reports, Pelosi wants to expand that privilege to include her family and members of the Californian delegation.
JOHN BERTHOUD, NATIONAL TAXPAYERS UNION: At a time when we have Air Force dollars going for kids at war, it might be some really questionable expenditure for Speaker Pelosi's staff, family, friends to be traveling on the military dime.
SYLVESTER: The military planes are equipped with an open bar and state-of-the-art communications. The planes are supposed to be used by lawmakers only for official trips overseas, to U.S. military bases or on a Pentagon-sponsored trip.
After the 9/11 attacks, then-Speaker Dennis Hastert began routinely to use the planes to travel back to his Illinois district for security concerns. Pelosi, who is second in line to the president, intends to do the same. But she wants the Pentagon to OK allowing others to have the same riding privileges at taxpayer expense.
REP. TOM PRICE, (R) GEORGIA: She has them based upon her rank and based upon the potential threat to her. And I think there's nobody in America who believes that other members of her state delegation ought to be able to travel with her and have the taxpayer pick up that tab. I think that's what violates the trust of the American people.
Yes you read that right. Having been in the transportation business, this will be a very bad idea indeed and in the end the working Soldier, Sailor and Airman will be the one that pays for it-in time lost. These types of lifts are nothing but a pain in the ass for all concerned.
Go read the whole thing. Then write your Congressperson.
Thursday, February 01, 2007
Joining the pile on
These soldiers should be grateful that the American public, which by all polls overwhelmingly disapproves of the Iraq war and the President's handling of it,do still offer their support to them, and their respect.
Through every Abu Ghraib and Haditha, through every rape and murder, the American public has indulged those in uniform, accepting that the incidents were the product of bad apples or even of some administration or command order.
Sure it is the junior enlisted men who go to jail, but even at anti-war protests, the focus is firmly on the White House and the policy. We just don't see very man "baby killer" epithets being thrown around these days, no one in uniform is being spit upon.
So, we pay the soldiers a decent wage, take care of their families, provide them with housing and medical care and vast social support systems and ship obscene amenities into the war zone for them, we support them in every possible way, and their attitude is that we should in addition roll over and play dead, defer to the military and the generals and let them fight their war, and give up our rights and responsibilities to speak up because they are above society?
It has been said elswhere but let me add my greetings. Bill Arkin, here is a cheery FUCK YOU!
I may disagree with the war, but writing this type of crap does no one any good. What is really pitful is that this lunkehead probably gets paid well.
"The troops" are pretty smart people. They have a lot of folks who understand that things are not rosy, but they just want to get the job done. Soon, so that they do not have to go back. However as long as they are there, they are going to do the best that they can. Its what they do. They do it regardless of who is President. Why this reporter cannot see that is simply beyond belief.
I would also take issue with his last statement. They are not paid well, certainly less than this useless guy makes. And the families are not being taken care of near as well as they should be. Read some of the rest of your paper Bill, and write about that. Guys like you owe them. You owe them a huge debt of gratitude......and whatever your feelings about the war are, you are simply wrong and full of shit.
Yes I know there are swear words here. But even I, have my limits. This is wrong.
Please feel free to e-mail this post to the Washington Post. I just did. Bastard.