Tuesday, August 31, 2004

2004 Republican National Convention Speech - Rudy Giuliani.......

.....Full transcript here. I didn't get to see it, I was watching my Titans, which I will get to later...
Everyone seems to be talking about this speech this morning. At least five people were discussing it in the break room when I came in.

Typical comment-"What an amazing speech. Why isn't he running? I'd vote for him after that."

I heard little if any negative comments, even from the normally liberal voices. It's like 9/12 all over again, where everyone got behind New York and Washington, when Giuliani put partisan politics aside and led his city (and the country as well) out of the smoking pile of rubble in downtown Manhattan. Giuliani has rightfully gained most Americans trust as a man who came through when the sh*t hit the fan. There are a few parts from this speech that deserve to be highlighted, because Giuliani was able to pinpoint what I feel many Independents are thinking right now in terms of this election.

For instance-

"I don't believe we're right about everything and Democrats are wrong about everything.

Neither party has a monopoly on virtue.

But I do believe that there are times in our history when our ideas are more necessary and important for what we are facing.

There are times when leadership is the most important.

That resonates quite well with people like myself who are not Republicans, yet feel that this election is about more than the standard domestic issues. Rudy then proceeded to outline the problem os Islamic terrorism in a way that the Democrats have completely avoided.

"Terrorism did not start on September 11, 2001. It had been festering for many years.

And the world had created a response to it that allowed it to succeed. The attack on the Israeli team at the Munich Olympics was in 1972. And the pattern had already begun.

The three surviving terrorists were arrested and within two months released by the German government.

Action like this became the rule, not the exception.

Terrorists came to learn they could attack and often not face consequences.

In 1985, terrorists attacked the Achille Lauro and murdered an American citizen who was in a wheelchair, Leon Klinghoffer.

They marked him for murder solely because he was Jewish.

Some of those terrorist were released and some of the remaining terrorists allowed to escape by the Italian government because of fear of reprisals.

So terrorists learned they could intimidate the world community and too often the response, particularly in Europe, was "accommodation, appeasement and compromise."

And worse the terrorists also learned that their cause would be taken more seriously, almost in direct proportion to the barbarity of the attack.

Terrorist acts became a ticket to the international bargaining table.

How else to explain Yasser Arafat winning the Nobel Peace Prize when he was supporting a terrorist plague in the Middle East that undermined any chance of peace?"

Rudy invoked the Israeli-Palestine issue a few times, most notably when speaking about the lack of consistency John Kerry has displayed-

"John Kerry has made it the rule to change his position, rather than the exception. In October, 2003, he told an Arab-American Institute in Detroit that a security barrier separating Israel from the Palestinian Territories was a "barrier to peace."

A few months later, he took exactly the opposite position. In an interview with the Jerusalem Post he said, "Israel's security fence is a legitimate act of self defense."

The contrasts are dramatic. They involve very different views of how to deal with terrorism.

President Bush will make certain that we are combatting terrorism at the source, beyond our shores, so we can reduce the risk of having to confront it in the streets of New York.

John Kerry's record of inconsistent positions on combatting terrorism gives us no confidence he'll pursue such a determined course."

Rudy also touched on the main issue in regards to the threats facing our nation, and that is the lack of accountability in the majority of the Middle Eastern regimes. This is something I waited to hear at the democrat convention, but it never came.

"President Bush has also focused on the correct long-term answer for the violence and hatred emerging from the Middle East. The hatred and anger in the Middle East arises from the lack of accountable governments.

Rather than trying to grant more freedom, create more income, improve education and basic health care, these governments deflect their own failures by pointing to America and Israel and other external scapegoats.

But blaming these scapegoats does not improve the life of a single person in the Arab world. It does not relieve the plight of even one woman in Iran.

It does not give a decent living to a single soul in Syria. It certainly does not stop the slaughter of African Christians in the Sudan.

The changes necessary in the Middle East involve encouraging accountable, lawful governments that can be role models.

This has also been an important part of the Bush Doctrine and the President's vision for the future.

Have faith in the power of freedom."

I'm not sure what Kerry could say to counter this at this point. Words like this spell out in detail why Bush has made the right choices in responding to the attacks on America. Kerry had his oppurtunity at the DNC to spell out what he would do, and all I can remember from that was something about extra special ops guys. Not exactly inspiring ideas.

Great speech from Rudy, I bet he'll be on the radar for 2008....

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Don't Miss...............

..........Protein Wisdom's coverage of the Republican National Convention, as few details will escape the laser-like perspective Jeff is capable of displaying....

Some excerpts from earlier.......
protein wisdom's Republican National Convention coverage, 2
After visiting a friend on St. Marks Place in the East Village, I stopped for a beer at a nearby pub and was immediately approached by a cute hippie girl who handed me a flier printed on blood red paper demanding Bush get out of New York. I told her I’m sorry, but that I love Bush—especially Bush in New York—and that I was looking forward to seeing lots of Bush this week. At which point she gave me a confused look, then grabbed back the flier, jotted down her phone number, and handed it back to me.

Context is everything, I guess.

Allah has blessed us with the picture worth a thousand head shakes too.......as they say- "It's like fuggin' 9/11 never happened."....

Well, if you went to the movies, to the tune of $100 million it didn't.....

-hey, how about a big hand for all of the security folks who kept Osama and his buddies from messing up the Olympics, yah? Big ups....

Happy Birthday to Kimmay too.....Be safe NYC.....

Friday, August 27, 2004

USA Mens Olympic Basketball Team Loses to....um......Argentina?!???

......You know, that international basketball powerhouse Argentina, basically whooped up on a hastily assembled team of NBA talent, beating them 89-81 .

Not sure what to think about this. So I offer two opinions.

1.)Bill Simmons- (the Sports Guy from ESPN)- In this article, Simmons basically says it's all the NBA's fault for not putting together a decent enough team that could compete in international rules Basketball. His main points consist of the following-

How we ignored the three essentials for any successful international team ...
1. A pure point guard who can penetrate, create shots for teammates, make open threes and make good decisions in the open floor.
2. At least two pure shooters, ideally three.
3. Big guys who can bang down low, set picks, shoot threes and run the floor.

Now, I will agree that it appeared as though the NBA folks in charge of putting this debacle of a team together decided it was more important to introduce the future of the NBA in Lebron James and Carmelo Anthony to the world than it was to win a Gold Medal. But I can't blame them for that. That's what they do. Get more jerseys sold so you can build more skyboxes and demand higher ticket prices. It's called business. And on top of that, I don't believe that this team of NBA guys are picturing an Olympic Gold Medal as the pinnacle of their career. I don't blame them. Everyone who knows what travelling is knows that had Shaq, Kobe, Hamilton, Wallace, and Garnett been present at this years Olympics we wouldn't be having this debate. So we sent an inferior team to see if they could get it done. They got whooped. By Argentina for chrissakes.

On to the counter-argument..

2.) Jason Whitlock, (also an ESPN columnist-notice a trend here?) Whitlock argues in this column that "The criticism of USA Basketball is borderline racist, is definitely unsophisticated and exposes a lot of super patriots as hypocrites. Allen Iverson is wearing our jersey -- our red, white and blue -- and playing the game the way we taught him to play it."

Now, granted Jason thinks 99% of sports issues revolve around race, but that doesn't change his point on this subject. He makes a compelling analogy in the way that the Canadian Olympic Hockey team lost out to Russia's in the 70's in a sport they invented too. Basically the point comes down to this-

"You talk to people in Canada, and they'll tell you the (1972)Summit Series was like a national emergency," Morrow said. "It really shook the heart and soul of the Canadians. The skill portion of the game [hockey] is viewed as being superior by the Europeans," Morrow said. "But when it comes to character and heart and competing, it's still the Canadians and the American players. Just look at the top scorers in the NHL the last few years -- seven or eight out of 10 are European."

Doesn't that sound like Dirk Nowitzk vs. Ben Wallace?"

Basically, while the NBA has spent the last eight or so years trying to figure out how to stop Shaq, the rest of the world has been developing talent and basic skills to the point that every member of their teams can pass, shoot, and dribble. 6 foot 10 Argentinians burying three pointers at will. That's what happened.

You know what? I'm not disappointed in the NBA guys at all. They were overmatched from the beginning. I think its good for basketball that they lost. But don't forget this (and I gauruntee you that whoever wins the Gold and Silver is well aware of it)- none-I repeat- none of these international powerhouses would last a quarter against this years NBA championship team.

And each and every member of Argentina's squad (minus Dinobli who's already playing) would saw off their left ear with a rusty nail file to get a chance for a multi year deal in the NBA. Gold medal or no Gold Medal.

I didn't see Lance Armstrong competing in any bike races either, did you?

Didn't think so.

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Iran should be liberated, and their regime eliminated............Part VI....................

....In case you hadn't heard-

Girl, 16, Hanged in Public in Iran

On Sunday, August 15, a 16-year-old girl in the town of Neka, northern Iran, was executed. Ateqeh Sahaleh was hanged in public on Simetry Street off Rah Ahan Street at the city center. The sentence was issued by the head of Neka’s Justice Department and subsequently upheld by the mullahs’ Supreme Court and carried out with the approval of Judiciary Chief Mahmoud Shahroudi.

In her summary trial, the teenage victim did not have any lawyer and efforts by her family to recruit a lawyer was to no avail. Ateqeh personally defended herself. She told the religious judge, Haji Rezaii, that he should punish the main perpetrators of moral corruption not the victims.

The judge personally pursued Ateqeh’s death sentence, beyond all normal procedures and finally gained the approval of the Supreme Court. After her execution Rezai said her punishment was not execution but he had her executed for her "sharp tongue".

Cox and Forkum

And since the regime was so confident in the impartiality of the court, they EXHUMED THE BODY ALREADY.

From Amnesty International

"On the same night that she was buried, Ateqeh Rajabi's corpse was reportedly removed from the grave by unknown individuals. The Rajabi family have lodged a complaint and have called for an investigation."

Yes, a completely responsible jury I am certain. This is the same regime that John Kerry wants to "call their bluff by organizing a group of states to offer Iran the nuclear fuel they need for peaceful purposes and take back the spent fuel so they cannot divert it to build a weapon."

Because see, Nuclear brinkmanship is like poker, except instead of chips you play with thermonuclear weapons and the fate of humanity. It's almost identical if you think about it.

(shaking head).......

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

To Prepare or not to Prepare...................

......As the readers of this blog may be aware, I do occasionally freak out about asteroids or other space debris raining down on our planet and causing all kinds of trouble. Most of the astronomy links I have listed to the right are concerning asteroids or comets in some way. I think my concern for asteroids was generated a few years ago when watching a particularly dense viewing of the Leonid meteor shower at a friends house. After watching the show, I remember thinking- "geez, that was a lot of crap flying around at one time, and it was moving DAMN fast. I'm sure nothing like that could hit us though, right? Lemme check......oh-so we don't really know do we...well then..

Glenn Reynolds the Instapundit has a column up today at Tech Central Station where he discusses disaster preparedness, and in the article he describes how the large number of amateur astronomers out there has provided a major resource in looking out for potentially dangerous asteroids.

The US Congress did create a mandate for Nasa for locating at least 90 percent of the estimated 1,000 asteroids and comets that approach the Earth and are larger than 1 kilometer (about 2/3-mile) in diameter, by the end of the next decade.

Here's where we are as of August 24th-

Notice how the more we look in the skies, the more we find floating around up there. Not exactly comforting, but not chicken-little-sky-is-falling stuff either. Plus, unless we get a minimum of a decade warning if we do detect one that is on course to strike the planet, there isn't a whole lot we could about it.

Here are the current projects in development that are specifically designed to test our asteroid/comet mitigation abilities. The boldest on the drawing board at this time is the Don Quijote Mission. Using two spacecraft, Sancho and Hidalgo, both will be launched at the same time but Sancho will take a faster route. When it arrives at the target asteroid it will begin a seven-month campaign of observation and physical characterisation during which it will land penetrators and seismometers on the asteroid's surface to understand its internal structure.

Sancho will then watch as Hidalgo arrives and smashes into the asteroid at very high speed. This will provide information about the behaviour of the internal structure of the asteroid during an impact event as well as excavating some of the interior for Sancho to observe. After the impact, Sancho and telescopes from Earth will monitor the asteroid to see how its orbit and rotation have been affected.

A good start, but I still feel that out of the billion dollar budget Nasa has put forward for space exploration, there is simply not anywhere near enough priority placed on this issue. None of the other projects NASA is currently working on will amount to anything once we discover a big one headed our way.

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Well this is pretty damn cool................

....Recently I posted the letter Ben Stein wrote to a military members spouse which was published in the Wall Street Journal. This being the uber-connected blogosphere, Karen, the spouse referred to in the letter, was so kind as to drop a note on yours truly little ole blog.

The link she provides is well worth the visit. The site is called ArmySpouses.com , and you can learn the whole story behind the letter itself. Quite a cool site and story it is. I highly suggest you read the whole thing here

It started from an article written by Mr. Ben Stein for a CBS Sunday Morning Commentary. A quick excerpt-

A man or woman is not a "star" if he gets paid tens of millions of dollars to say lines in front of a camera. She's not a "star" if she gets paid millions to simper and look sad because an imaginary boyfriend did not call. He's not a "star" if he gets paid thousands of dollars a minute to run up and down a wooden basketball court. They may be good actors and super great athletes, but in my mind, they're not stars.

The real stars, the ones who keep this country free on Independence Day and every day, are the ones who lead a patrol down an alley in Falluja with some maniac terrorist aiming an AK-47 at their heads. The real stars are the ones who leave their families behind at a dusty Army base and go off and risk––and lose––their lives to do their duty by their country and free men and women everywhere.

They're the ones who go off into Godforsaken valleys in Afghanistan hunting for Al Qaeda, never knowing if they'll ever come back, and often not coming back. Think Pat Tillman and you've pretty much got it.

Thank you very much Karen for alerting me to the whole story, and thank you as well for your service to our country, along with your spouse.

Great Show at the Ryman Last Night....................

......Buddy Guy and Robert Cray played last night at the Ryman Auditorium, and it was an amazing show. I've seen both of these guys before, but never together. They are a perfect match.

Robert Cray has a Memphis R & B sound with smoking Albert Collins-style guitar riffs (although at one point Robert stated that he has stolen quite a few of his licks from Buddy himself). Robert also has a voice that would make an Otis Redding or an Al Green very proud to hear. He can absolutely tear through a slow ballad with such depth and passion that you feel drained by the end of the song. Personal favorite: Final encore- Smokin' Gun...

"I'm having nasty nasty visions and baby you're in every one, yeah
and I'm so afraid I'm gonna find you with a still hot and smokin gun

Buddy Guy, what is there to say? A living legend, brought up in the 1950 Baton Rouge Louisiana blues scene, Buddy made his way to the mean streets of Chicago by late 1957 and was introduced to the idols from his day, guys like Guitar Slim and Muddy Waters. He's had his ups and downs during his career like any other guitar god, but I have never seen a bad Buddy Guy show. Last night was no exception. Buddy dipped through the usual stuff, a smoldering version of Fever, a few blues numbers from his Junior Welles days, and the obligatory Damn Right I've got the Blues from the grammy winning album of the same name. Personal Favorite: Feels Like Rain-

Down here the river, meets the sea
And in the sticky heat I feel ya' open up to me
Love comes out of nowhere baby, just like a hurricane
And it feels like rain
And it feels like rain

If this tour is coming to your area at any time, make sure you don't miss it, you won't be disappointed..

Monday, August 23, 2004

Chris Lynch at A Large Regular gives us a timeline of Kerrys campaign throughout the month.

If you read this and still believe that Kerry is the better choice, more power to ya. Bush would have to absolutely crap all over the debates to get me to vote for Kerry at this point. I wouldn't trust Kerry to babysit my friends dogs right now, never mind lead the free world.

The Bob Dole quote that Kerry may never recover from-

"One day he's saying that we were shooting civilians, cutting off their ears, cutting off their heads, throwing away his medals or his ribbons," Dole said. "The next day he's standing there, 'I want to be president because I'm a Vietnam veteran.

"Maybe he should apologize to all the other 2.5 million veterans who served. He wasn't the only one in Vietnam," said Dole, whose World War II wounds left him without the use of his right arm.

Tman Weekend roundup..............Titans get it done again.......

.......This weekend was spent helping a good friend of mine forget about this absolute psycho ex he broke up with three months ago, as she let him know that she got married last month. Real nice. It was easy to convince him that she was obviously not quite together when you looked at how quickly she married after breaking up with him. Three months? Yeah, that's gonna work.

It was even easier to get him over it when we wandered around our local hotspots throughout the weekend and observed the vast assortment of gorgeous women who populate our humble little town. Oh, and we got drunk. That helped too.

Tman Consolation Services (TM) were once again successful in helping a friend get past an ex. Much thanks again to the bartending staff in Nashville, your efforts were appreciated.

On to the TITANS!!!!!!

Titans top Bills, 16-15

The Associated Press

Steve McNair and Chris Brown set the offensive tone early in Tennessee's 16-15 victory at Buffalo Saturday night.
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y., Aug. 21, 2004 - The Tennessee Titans won the game. The Buffalo Bills got a reminder of why they might need two capable running backs - Travis Henry and Willis McGahee.

With much of the focus on the Bills' potential running back controversy, Titans kicker Joe Nedney pulled out the team's 16-15 preseason win with a 22-yard field goal as time expired Saturday.

Easily the highlight of this weekends Titans preseason performance was the continued emergence of Chris Brown, the man who looks to be the starting running back for the Titans since the departure of Eddie Something-or-other. Chris ran 10 times for 61 yards on Saturday, and looked extremely fast and elusive. He hit the holes hard, and it seemed like the O-Line was able to make the right blocks for Chris all day against an excellent defense. Other than that, the rest of the starters looked just fine. McNair was almost perfect again, and Tyrone Calico continues to get better. Ty made a great touchdown catch over a veteran cornerback in Troy Vincent. Keith Bulluck almost officially ended the running back controversy in Buffalo when he planted Travis Henry in the first half with a devastating hit that sent Henry to the locker room. X-Rays were negative though, and Henry should be fine.

All in all, a great weekend- although I do miss the visitor I had last weekend more than I thought I would. Dammit.

Love stinks.

Friday, August 20, 2004

If it wouldn't be too much trouble...............

...anyone have a spare $440,000?

Four Wheels, $440,000

August 20, 2004; Page W9C

Porsche's new Carrera GT has a big 605-horsepower engine and a $440,000 price tag, but Jay Leno says he bought one because of something small.

"What really makes it special is that little 6-inch clutch," says the "Tonight Show" host, who is expecting delivery of his new Porsche in the next couple of weeks. "It's one of the few things that moves technology forward. Most supercars are only about bigger-faster-more."


Yes, Porsche has offically made my dream Carrera. 605 Horsepower, 0-60 in 3.6, no mention of the top speed, but as the article states-"Buyers should beware, though. The GT seems designed to make its drivers feel inadequate. We stretched our courage to reach about 150 mph on the track, or a mere three-quarters of the car's top speed. We never got out of fourth gear."

Fucking droooooooooooooooooooool.............certain friends of mine should not get this car if they wish to retain their ability to drive legally, so you've been warned. Me, I shouldn't get this car if I plan on living past 40...

Update: A certain car-enthusiast friend of mine says that she would prefer the following over the Porsche listed above.....You decide....

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Argument for why the Titans can win the Super Bowl......Part I

......Because the Titans are a TEAM, that's why.

Keith Bulluck exemplifies this concept here-
Bulluck picks Super Bowl shot over bigger bucks

By Teresa M. Walker
The Associated Press

All-Pro LB Keith Bulluck chose to re-sign with the Titans during the off-season rather than test the NFL's free agency market next year.

NASHVILLE, TN, Aug. 19, 2004 -- Keith Bulluck knows his answer to the question of how much is enough.

Coming off his first Pro Bowl and All-Pro season, the Tennessee linebacker could have played out the final year of his contract then become a free agent in search of more money. Instead, he signed a six-year, $36 million contract in March and remained a Titan.

Even though he's now the NFL's second-highest paid linebacker behind Baltimore's Ray Lewis, Bulluck's decision didn't add up for some people.

"A couple of my friends around the league kind of were like, `Oh, you know you can get more. If you're worth more, you can get more.' Who's to say if I played my contract out I would've made it through the whole season? I've got to take what's given," Bulluck said.

.........Sticking with the Titans keeps him on a team that has made two trips to the AFC championship game and is tied with St. Louis for the NFL's best record over the past five seasons.

"You've never seen a defensive or offensive MVP playing on a losing team, so one of the goals is for our team to make the playoffs and win the Super Bowl," Bulluck said. "We've been knocking on the door for so many years, it's time to kick it in."

Bulluck is the example of the type of players that Floyd Reese and Jeff Fisher have been cultivating through this organization. They are hard working, they have little to no overbearing egos, and they play together as a team. When Eddie George and Jevon Kearse started whining about how much money they could make, they singled themselves out as players who were more concerned about themselves than winning a Super Bowl with the team. They no longer were worth the paper their million dollar contracts were written on. Teams win Super Bowls, not individuals. And Keith Bulluck proves once again that this team will be a force to reckoned with this year.


Ben Stein Editorial- Yesterdays Wall Street Journal........

.......Ben Stein, of Ferris Buellers Day Off fame as well as the speech writer and lawyer for Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon wrote an extremely powerful editorial yesterday in the Wall Street Journal. Since it's a paid site, unless you are a registered paying member, the link would be meaningless to you (I suppose you could go get yesterdays paper-I digress). But since I pay for the ability to read the site, I'm going to post the editorial on my sight. And hope the WSJ decides not to sue......Enjoy dear readers, and don't forget the risks I take for you.......

Strength at Home

(Appearing in the Wall Street Journal-August 18, 2004; Page A10)

(This is a letter I wrote to the newsletter of an Army unit called The Strykers, stationed in Iraq out of Ft. Lewis, Wash. The editor asked me what I would say to make the wives feel appreciated while their husbands are in Iraq. This is what I wrote to one soldier's wife.)

Dear Karen,

I have a great life. I have a wife I adore, a son who is a lazy teenager but I adore him, too. We live in a house with two dogs and four cats. We live in peace. We can worship as we please. We can say what we want. We can walk the streets in safety. We can vote. We can work wherever we want and buy whatever we want. When we sleep, we sleep in peace. When we wake up, it is to the sounds of birds.

All of this, every bit of it, is thanks to your husband, his brave fellow soldiers, and to the wives who keep the home fires burning while the soldiers are away protecting my family and 140 million other families. They protect Republicans and Democrats, Christians, Jews, Muslims and atheists. They protect white, black, yellow, brown and everyone in between. They protect gays and straights, rich and poor.

And none of it could happen without the Army wives, Marine wives, Navy wives, Air Force wives -- or husbands -- who go to sleep tired and lonely, wake up tired and lonely, and go through the day with a smile on their faces. They feed the kids, put up with the teenagers' surliness, the bills that never stop piling up, the desperate hours when the plumbing breaks and there is no husband to fix it, and the even more desperate hours after the kids have gone to bed, the dishes have been done, the bills have been paid, and the wives realize that they will be sleeping alone -- again, for the 300th night in a row.

The wives keep up the fight even when they have to move every couple of years, even when their checks are late, even when they have to make a whole new set of friends every time they move.

And they keep up the fight to keep the family whole even when they feel a lump of dread every time they turn on the news, every time they switch on the computer, every time the phone rings and every time -- worst of all -- the doorbell rings. Every one of those events -- which might mean a baseball score or a weather forecast or a FedEx man to me and my wife -- might mean the news that the man they love, the man they have married for better or worse, for richer and for poorer, in sickness and in health, is now parted from them forever.

These women will never be on the cover of People. They will never be on the tabloid shows on TV about movie stars. But they are the power and the strength that keep America going. Without them, we are nothing at all. With them, we can do everything.

They are the glue that holds the nation together, stronger than politicians, stronger than talking heads, stronger than al Qaeda.

They deserve all the honor and love a nation can give. They have my prayers, and my wife's, every morning and every night.

Love, and I do mean Love, Ben.

Mr. Stein, a television personality and writer, is co-author with Phil DeMuth of "Can America Survive," forthcoming from Hay House.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Iraqi Bloggers Get Serious About Democracy................

........I have occasionally been quoting from the Iraqi blog listed on the sidebar known as Iraq the Model. Two brothers, Ali and Mohammed Fadhil are the authors of the blog, and they have done an incredible job of showing what life is like on the ground in Iraq.

Now they are getting serious about the opportunities available in Iraq, and today announced their candidacies for the Iraqi National Assembly.

Here are there statements:

We believe that we represent an important segment of the Iraqi people that was never organized before under any category as a result of the oppression of the past regime. Now this segment has come to see the necessity to contribute to the building of a new Iraq in a way that is entirely different from the old ways that are still dominant in the Middle East and that are governed by religious fanaticism and pan-Arab nationalism.

We see that remaining silent is not an option in our battle towards democracy and freedom and that everyone who seeks a better future should take part in this battle.

علي فاضل (Ali Fadhil)

Through our writings in our weblog and communication with different opinions and view points we find ourselves committed to reconsider the way in which we can serve our nation.

We also saw that our somewhat daring opinions were accepted by many people whether westerners or Iraqis and we see that we have the capability to clarify our vision about Iraq's future through talking to Iraqis directly.

Our work on the weblog opened our minds more, made us bolder and encouraged us to communicate with our fellow citizens as they're the ones who can make the change and they're the ones we started to write for their sake.

محمد فاضل (Mohammed Fadhil)

To see more about the Iraqi Democratic Party, and pictures of the borthers, please visit the site- Iraqi Democratic Party.

Good luck to you both, and as we like to say here in the states- all you democrats in Iraq- vote early and often...

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

It's about friggin time........................

...........US to Relocate Troops: Pentagon details troop realignment plan-

Bush on Monday announced plans to shift as many as 70,000 U.S. troops who are now stationed in Western Europe and Asia in one of the largest realignments since the end of the Cold War.

And instead of "hey, thanks for protecting us from the threat of encroaching Communism and liberating half of Europe" we get the Germans whining about it.

Germans Wary of U.S. Troop Withdrawal

By TONY CZUCZKA, Associated Press Writer

BERLIN - German officials voiced concern Monday that their country has the most to lose with President Bush (news - web sites)'s announcement that tens of thousands of troops will return to the United States over the next decade.

With some 70,000 U.S. soldiers based in Germany, thousands of local jobs — from bakers to maintenance workers and office personnel — depend on the Americans, who first came as occupying forces after World War II.

European and Asian countries with U.S. troops have braced for the changes for several years, but Bush's announcement Monday that up to 70,000 uniformed personnel and 100,000 dependents will gradually be moved back to the United States brought home the full impact.

"Base closures would hit us very hard," said city spokesman Ole Kruse in the Bavarian city of Wuerzburg, home of the U.S. Army's 1st Infantry Division.

But for places like Baumholder, a town in rural western Germany with a U.S. military training area, that spells problems.

Some 11,500 residents are matched by a U.S. military community of the same size, and the local economy would lose $150 million a year if the Americans left, Mayor Volkmar Pees told The Associated Press.

"The Americans are part of us," Baumholder resident Iris Schoen said. "You build up great friendships."

Hey Iris, friends don't bail when they are needed for support. When we were trying to convince the UN that Saddam needed to go, you and France stood in the way. You guys seem to have a funny way of showing your friendship. One might say with friends like these, who needs enemies.

For the last few years, many people have been saying this needed to be done. We didn't protect South Korea or Germany out of the kindness of our hearts, we did it to protect us. They were beneficiaries. Well, the Cold War is over, and we don't need to be there anymore. So we should leave. And if it hurts Germany's precious economy, tough shiite Wolfgang. Now you get to fund a real military instead of the joke that you currently have. Let's see how bad your economy tanks when you have to spend a serious percentage of your GDP on defense for a change. People whine about the US being a warmongering nation, but as soon as we decide to pull out the tune changes.

I wouldn't want to be in South Korea if Kim Jong starts losing it.Because we won't be there either. South Korea did help us out in Iraq, so I have much more sympathy for them, but there isn't really much we could do besides get in the way if North Korea decides to attack. North Korea has miles worth of artillery aimed at Seoul at the DMZ, and if they decided they wanted to take South Korea, Seoul would be turned in to a parking lot in about a half an hour. North Korea needs to be dealt with, but it is a very delicate situation, and there aren't any easy answers. One thing is for sure though, the 30,000 odd troops in South Korea aren't doing much good where they are, and they are needed elsewhere. I imagine the only way to solve the problem of the lunatic in Pyongyang is to isolate him and get the other neighboring countries involved, which is what the current administration seems to be doing.

Monday, August 16, 2004

Tman Weekend Roundup..................

......Sorry for the delay dear readers (yes, all five of you), I was busy entertaining friends through the weekend.

The highlights:

The Olympics: Opening Ceremonies

Yay Iraq! Yay Afghani Women! Not quite sure what to say about North and South Korea doing the whole "unity" thing. Did Kim Jong-Il already topple the South and make it a larger festering nightmare or what? I didn't get the memo.

Fuck off and die Islamic Fascists!
Amir Taheri on the Islamic oppression of female Muslim atheletes-
According to officials in Athens, the number of Muslim women participating in this year's game is the lowest since 1960. Several Muslim countries have sent no women athletes at all; others, such as Iran, are taking part with only one, in full hijab. And state-owned TV networks in many Muslim countries, including Iran and Egypt, have received instructions to limit coverage of events featuring women athletes at Athens to a minimum.

So, it's become so bad in Islamic nations that not only do they keep women from competing, but now the Men won't compete against Jews. Way to move in to the 18th century Mohammed. You will be playing catch up with Iraq and Afghanistan in five years. Have fun.

A picture worth a thousand words-

Members of the Iraqi delegation pose with members of the United States' delegation during the Opening Ceremony of the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Friday, Aug. 13, 2004-

Question, who's idea was it to have Iraq followed by Iran when introduced at the Olympics? Is he even aware of what's going on? Why does this man still have a job? Unbelievable.

Anyways...in other news.......


Eddie who? Never heard of the guy.........

Chris Brown picks up big yardage during second quarter action. Brown finished with 46 yards on six carries.

Titans win opener vs. Browns

QB Steve McNair and WR Derrick Mason are already in regular-season form. McNair’s 21-yard touchdown pass to Mason gave the Titans a 7-0 lead in the first quarter and the Titans went on to post an impressive 24-3 victory over the Cleveland Browns Saturday night at the Coliseum.

Yes, I know it's preseason, and yes I realize it was just Cleveland, but damn did the Flaming Thumbtacks look good this weekend. McNair was almost perfect, Chris Brown made everyones memory of Eddie George get real fuzzy, and the D-Line assaulted a mobile quaterback in Jeff Garcia from the first snap on- in the words of Jeff Fisher- "Kevin Carter, they couldn’t block Kevin. Kevin was the reason we had the start that we did." Mike Echols at cornerback, filling in for injured Samari Rolle, also looked pretty good.

Yes, I know, it's preseason. They still looked damn good.

A quick thanks to all my bartending fans who may or may not read this for taking such great care of my special guest this weekend, much appreciated.

It was an exceptionally good weekend, and I managed to keep myself from anymore arguments with the pavement, so no complaints there. Good luck to all the Olympic Atheletes minus the Islamofascists nutbags, and GO TITANS!!!!!!!!

Friday, August 13, 2004

Ahem..........(clears throat)...................




And the most often heard statement at the Nashville Coliseum-


All you NFL fans out there, get ready to see lots of this this season..........

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Kerry sinking like a stone tied to a steel mannequin with cement shoes.......

.......As I've stated previously, I don't have to make a final decision on who I'm voting for until election day, but jeeeebus is Kerry making things a whole lot easier.

Let's start off with the primary problem I have with Kerry right now, mainly the War on Terror. Kerry has to energize his base to win the election so that they can convince the swing voters that Bush needs to go. He has the anti-war liberal democrat vote, but they need to convince the undecideds why Kerry would be better as president.

So Bush decides to call out Kerry on the War in Iraq and gets his final answer. Kerry did vote to give Bush the power to go to War in Iraq, but then did all he could to appeal to the anti-war base which he needs to get elected. For instance, before the primaries were in full swing Kerry appealed to the anti-war base-

MSNBC’S CHRIS MATTHEWS: "Are you one of the anti-war candidates?" (MSNBC’s "Hardball," 1/6/04)

KERRY: "I am - Yeah." (MSNBC’s "Hardball," 1/6/04)

For a complete breakdown of Kerry's statements on the war, I suggest this short documentary here, which pretty much sinks any credibility Kerry had in Iraq.

Now he's realized that those swing voters who were pro-Iraq war are not amused by his weasel-like political motivations.

So he responds to Bush thusly-

GRAND CANYON, Ariz. (Reuters) - Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry said on Monday he would have voted for the congressional resolution authorizing force against Iraq even if he had known then no weapons of mass destruction would be found.

Taking up a challenge from President Bush the Massachusetts senator said: "I'll answer it directly. Yes, I would have voted for the authority. I believe it is the right authority for a president to have but I would have used that authority effectively."

How he maintains the anti-war vote with this statement is a puzzler, that's for sure. And during his big spotlight at the Convention he listed ZERO specifics as to a.)How he would have "used that authority effectively" and b.)what was so ineffective about Bush's plan. Not to say Bush's post war plan is going so well, but Kerry has done nothing to show me what, if anything, he would have done differently besides not funding the War. Signing up France and Germany doesn't count. The UN can't even protect themselves, so that doesn't really count either.

Kerry would need to reveal a master anti-terror plan equivalent to solving cold fusion to convince me that he would be a better president in this time of war than Bush.

Since Kerry has been running his campaign based on the "I served in Vietnam so I would make a better president right now" slogan, one would expect the Republicans to inspect his war record, much the way the Democrats have inspected Bush.

If I were Kerry, I wouldn't have run the campaign this way. I may not have the credentials to challenge his Vietnam records, but these guys certainly do. From what they have to say, I would not be all to vocal about my Vietnam credibility in order to convince voters why I would be a better president. Of course the Democrats are doing all they can to discredit the anti-Kerry Veterans, but so far they are failing miserably. From the Purple heart Medal to the story about his Apocalypse Now rendition in Cambodia, Kerry has played fast and loose with the truth. A certain Democratic consultant has gone so far as to suggest Kerry sue the Swift Boat veterans for Libel. A texas lawyer William J. Dyer, of the balder Blog, does not think this would be such a fabulous idea. Not only that, the veterans would probably welcome a chance to have Kerry take the stand, because by the accounts I can see, they would absolutely crush him.

This essay sums up the problems for kerry in a nutshell in regards to his Vietnam service-

"What both sides agree upon is two things: First, we wish for a higher level of discourse. The Swiftees have exerted themselves to act legally and responsibly, with sworn evidence. The Kerry partisans have responded with invective. Second, John Kerry has centerpieced his short Vietnam service as a junior officer 35-years ago as his major qualification to lead the US and the world in these dangerous times. The Kerry campaign has avoided discussing his 20-years in the Senate. The SwiftBoat veterans discuss Kerry’s central campaign claim. Now, it’s up to the press to be fair, and the American people to use the several months until election day to decide the issues."

For Kerry to avoid becoming another Dukkakis, I suggest he pull out a different approach to his campaign, and give up the "I served in Vietnam" stuff.

That's not gonna happen.

Sorry democrats, I think we're looking at another FOUR MORE YEARS. Which, considering the fact that we are still at war, looks to be the best option for our country and the world (minus the Islamofascists and other assorted dictators) at this time.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Recovering Progressives Support Group...........

.......Judith Weiss over at Kesher Talk has a cyber support group going for the folks out there who like myself are pro-gay-marriage, pro-choice, pro-drug-legalization, against establishment of relgion, but also pro-war.

The Superman of the blog world, Glenn Reynolds, is among these folks as well.

His quote here sums it up pretty well-

A reader emails:
Before the war in Iraq, I would imagine you were usually considered a centrist. Now, whenever I see you mentioned in the media, it's "Conservative blogger Glenn Reynolds." . . . if you are for the war, no matter how liberal your other beliefs are, you are conservative. If you are against the war, you are normal. What gives?

Glenn responds:

I've pretty much given up fighting it, because yes, that seems to be the definition. Pro-gay-marriage, pro-choice, pro-drug-legalization, but pro-war? You're a "conservative."

Most of the people who know me well would say that I'm not very conservative, and do hold many liberal views. Much like Mrs Weiss, I voted for Gore in 2000 and Clinton in 92 and 96. Despite this record, the moment I try and defend Bush for things that he didn't even do, I get branded an uber-conservative Bush lackey.

Many people won't say it, but they imply some sort of Bush hand associated with 9/11, conspiratorial wise- he knew and did nothing, he actively conspired to hide what he did know, etc.etc. This is lunacy. Not only that but it dangerously places the blame wheere it doesn't belong.

Islamic Terrorists had been planning 9/11 for almost a decade. They are the ones responsible. Period.

I have yet to make a final decision on whom I will vote for in the next election, but Kerry has shown me absolutely nothing in terms of what he will do to fight and win this war any better or differently than Bush. And as I have said before, all of the domestic stuff means NADA-ZIP-ZILCH-ZERO if these terrorists are able to pull off the size of attack they want to.

One mushroom cloud over Manhattan and gay marriage or stem cell research will be a long distant memory. So will modern life as we know it.

So far, Bush has defeated and toppled two regimes that were directly supporting, funding and arming Islamic terrorists. Iran and Syria shoud be next.

Bush wants to get rid of the Mullahs in Iran, Kerry wants to give them nuclear fuel with the "hope" they use it correctly.

You tell me who sounds more responsible.

Update: There's a liberal democrat belief running around out there that no one who voted for Gore in 2000 will be voting for Bush this year. They couldn't possibly be more ignorant. Opinion Journal has this listing of letters of these people who like myself look to be pulling the Bush lever in November.

My favorite letter that sums it up-

I wanted to e-mail the gent who claimed virtually no one who voted for Gore in 2000 will vote for Bush in '04; however, no e-mail address was available for him. Perhaps you might forward my message.

I accompanied my parents as they campaigned for John F. Kennedy; my husband and I went door-to-door for George McGovern; I've lived in major urban centers my entire adult life, haven't had a TV since '75, lived abroad during much of the '80s, speak and write Japanese, have an advanced degree but no children, and produced and hosted a feminist radio show on an NPR affiliate in the '70s, and of course voted for Gore in 2000. All very nice and leftish.

However, I believe George W. Bush is one of our greatest presidents and I will cast my vote for him in November. I can only speak for myself of course, but if a committed lefty like me can change her mind, all I can say is carry an oxygen tank, you might get buried in that landslide you're predicting.

--Kelly Colgan Azar

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

For those interested- The Perseid Meteor Showers-........

...For all of those who enjoy watching the skies in August during the meteor showers, this year looks to be an excellent oppurtunity to see plenty of streaking shots. The best nights to see them will be between the 11th and the 12th, early morning hours.

From Sky and Telescope

2004: An Excellent Year for the Perseids
By Joe Rao

Circumstances will be nearly ideal for watching the annual Perseid meteor shower at its predicted maximum late on the night of August 11–12. Many families on August vacations at dark, country sites discover these meteors on their own, and late-summer campers often pull their sleeping bags out of their tents to enjoy this Old Faithful shower.

Update for Mike Jericho: Mike was bummed that the Southern Hemisphere never gets to see that much in the way of Meteor Storms, so I did a little hunting and FEAR NOT MIKE! Just wait until 2006 and you get to see the Leonids, they are pretty cool too...

Jesus H Christ in a Chickenbasket is this guy funny.........

.......who you ask? Jay Pinkerton.....that's who.

I stumbled acorss this cartoon here, and proceeded to damage my ribs from laughing. Then I made the unfortunate decision to read through his archives here, and found the following article that will have anyone who has tried to reassemble an IKEA computer desk crying in pain from laughing so hard.

How to assemble an IKEA Computer Desk

And Jay goes on the blogroll.....and I get a new keyboard.

You have been warned, so don't come crying to me about how you spit coffee all over your monitor....

Monday, August 09, 2004

Candidate for Most Misleading News Headline of the Year........

"Asteroid Threat 'To Cease Within 30 Years'"

By John von Radowitz, Science Correspondent, PA News

Killer asteroids will essentially cease to be a threat within the next 30 years, a leading expert said today.

Scientists are discovering near-earth asteroids (NEAs) so fast that the chances of one hitting the Earth with no warning is likely to become minute, said Dr Benny Peiser.

Since 1995 the number of known NEAs had shot up from just 300 to 3,000.

By 2008, it was expected that 90% of the estimated 1,000 to 1,200 asteroids big enough to wipe out civilisation would be found, said Dr Peiser, one of the world’s leading asteroid experts from Liverpool John Moores University.

The rest of these space rocks, measuring more than a kilometre across, would probably be detected within the next 20 years.

Two powerful new telescopes due to start operating in the next few years would find as many asteroids each month as have been discovered in the last decade, said Dr Peiser.

“Within the next one or two generations we will no longer have asteroid impact disaster movies,” he said at a science briefing in London.

“The good news is we have now developed not just the knowledge about the threat we face but also potentially the technology with which to deal with it.”

Future discoveries and space missions would provide information about how to deflect an asteroid on collision course with the Earth.

Within 20 to 30 years, search systems would exist with the ability to detect 90% of all NEAs larger than 150 metres across.

Dr Peiser said if an asteroid did hit the Earth it would be most likely to strike an uninhabited region or an ocean.

First of all, the threat of an asteroid striking the planet is never going away. We will get struck by a large asteroid again. It is not a question of if, but a question of when. As far as our upgrades in telescopes are concerned, we have made major strides in our ability to fully scan our solar system and pick out potential NEO's. NASA is to be commended for their efforts in this area. I might as well add that they still aren't spending enough money in this area, but hey, what do I know anyways.

Dr. Peiser states that we have also developed the "potential" technology to deal with the threat. I would like to hear more about this technology, because it is my understanding that we currently have absolutely NOTHING available to mitigate a large NEO moving at the insane speeds that they do. Small ones, maybe, but lets once again think about this- a large 1km plus asteroid, potentially made of iron and other metals, moving at speeds ranging from mach 10-mach 20, would not be an easy thing to stop. I would enjoy hearing Dr Peiser expand on this theme.

There is also the talk of "future" missions and discoveries that will save us, but that is not an answer for right now. Until we have the technology, we are still screwed if one is found. We have nothing even remotely capable of dealing with this kind of problem. We can barely keep the Space Shuttles from falling apart and they want us to believe we have something ready for this?

The last part of the briefing from above involves the statement that even "if an asteroid did hit the Earth it would be most likely to strike an uninhabited region or an ocean". Yeah, so? It really doesn't matter where something 1 km or bigger hits, the effects of the impact would be felt worldwide in multiple forms of instant death. From the shockwave to the possible tidal wave, any asteroid of this size will cause unimaginable damage.

For a decent study that was performed concerning the impacts, visit the Sandia Labs sight for more information. A brief sample-

"This computer-generated image by Sandia National Laboratories' scientists shows the impact of a 1-km comet (or asteroid) hitting in the open ocean. The comet and 300 to 500 cubic kilometers of ocean water would be vaporized nearly instantaneously by the tremendous energy of the impact. The impact energy of about 300 gigatons of TNT would be equivalent to about 10 times the explosive power of all the nuclear weapons in existence in the 1960s at the height of the Cold War."

Sleep well.

Friday, August 06, 2004

Ok, you can all just shut the hell up now............

...This is directed at all of the folks out there who didn't support the war in Iraq because they didn't believe that Saddam was connected to Arab Terrorists.


Ansar al-Islam (Supporters of Islam) Jund al-Islam Soldiers of God

Ansar al-Islam is a radical Kurdish Islamic group that is supportive of Saddam Hussein's regime. This group is located in the pseudo-autonomous Northern Iraq. This group has ties with Taliban and al-Qaeda. It is the most radical group operating in the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

Ansar al-Islam was established in December 2001 after a merger between Jund al-Islam, led by Abu Abdallah al-Shafi'i and the Islamic Movement splinter group led by Mullah Krekar. Both leaders are believed to have served in Afghanistan. The group is based in Biyarah and surrounding areas near the border with Iran.

Ansar al-Islam recent activities include: razing of beauty salons, burning a schools for girls, and murdered women in the streets for refusing to wear the burqa. It has seized a Taliban-style enclave of 4,000 civilians and several villages near the Iranian border. It is also responsible for ambushing and killing of 42 Kurdish soldiers. Ansar al-Islam is in a state of war with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK). It was responsible for the assassination in 2001 of a senior official of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), Franso Hariri, and for the attempted killing of Burhan Salih, head of the PUK-led Iraqi Kurdistan regional government. However, Ansar al-Islam is not in armed confrontation with the KDP.
About 700 members.

Additional Info
According to some reports, the group has received $600,000 from al-Qaeda, and a delivery of weapons and Toyota Land Cruisers. There are also reports stating that Ansar al-Islam received $35,000 from the Mukhabarat branch of Iraqi Intelligence Service, in addition to a considerable quantity of arms. The leader of Ansar al-Islam, Mullah Krekar has been captured in September of 2002.


Did everyone catch that? Ansar al-Islam, an Arab terrorist group that was (emphasis on the "was" part) based in Iraq, had direct ties to Al-Qaeda and Saddam. Got that? DIRECT TIES TO TERRORISTS TRYING TO KILL US.

Since we removed Saddam guess what happened-

Iraq Evidence Led Feds to Albany Mosque
Friday, August 06, 2004

ALBANY, N.Y. — Information found in Iraq led federal investigators to become suspicious of an Albany, N.Y., mosque leader, FOX News has learned.

Last summer, U.S. troops discovered Yassin Muhhiddin Aref's name, telephone number and address in a book left behind in a vacated terrorist training camp, a U.S. official told FOX News. The book also revealed that Ansar al-Islam, the group running the camp, had given Aref a title: "the commander."

Aref, 34, is the Imam of the Masjid As-Salam mosque in Albany, N.Y. He and one other mosque leader were arrested Thursday and charged with helping an undercover informant posing as a weapons dealer who was plotting to buy a shoulder-launched missile that would be used to kill the Pakistani ambassador in New York City.

Aref and Mohammed Mosharref Hossain (search), the 49-year-old founder of the mosque and owner of the local Little Italy Pizzeria, were allegedly collaborating with someone who was not a terrorist but an informant participating in a sting operation; no missile ever was exchanged.

People wonder why I get so worked up when the media and others continue to perpetuate the lie that the war in Iraq was a distraction from the war on terror.


These psychos were trying to help the undercover agent buy missiles to shoot in New York. THEY WERE DIRECTLY TIED TO IRAQ. WE DISCOVERED THEM BECAUSE OF OUR EFFORTS IRAQ.


Thursday, August 05, 2004

Colin Powell, PJ O'Rourke, Volvo's, Beatles, Elvis, and our Zero Sum World...

.......Via Beck over at Incite (recently added to ye olde blogroll) comes this fascinating interview with Colin Powell by PJ O'Rourke. PJ is one of my favorite writers, and his attitude definitely makes for an entertaining read.

Colin Powell is also probably one of the most misunderstood people within the current administration I have ever seen. People from either side of the political fence constantly berate him for being either a Bush lackey (if they are Dems) or a soft multilateralist appeaser (if they are Repubs). I think he is one of the greatest things to happen to this country in years. In this interview he highlights the specific problems facing this country and the World, and shows how America has taken on the responsibility of lifting up the undeveloped nations of the world since the other major powers are either unwilling or incapable of doing so.

And of course, this being a PJ O'Rourke interview, he does the whole socio-political thing and then seamlessly jumps to Volvo's, Elvis and the Beatles.

My personal favorites from the interview-

(I asked the Secretary why the defense spending of our closest allies was, proportionately, so much less than our own.)

P. J. O'ROURKE: The powers that are on our side, why aren't they pulling on their oars? I mean, the EU has as big an economy and as big a population as we do.

SECRETARY POWELL: First of all, I do think they're on our side. I think we had a big hiccup on Iraq, and we lost some of them. But that'll swing back. The pendulum will come back our way because we do have more common interests than disagreements: terrorism, the world trading system, so many other things. Now, the reason we have to spend so much more is that there is no German navy preserving peace in the Pacific, there are no British troops standing guard in Korea, there is no need for any of our European Union friends to have the ability to project an army in a week or two from wherever they are to a place like Afghanistan.

P. J. O'ROURKE: But, why not?

SECRETARY POWELL: Because they have never felt that that was their destiny or their obligation. The United States entered into partnerships and believes it has these worldwide obligations. Nobody can move things like we can. They have never invested in it. Now, with the EU up to twenty-five nations, they're looking at whether or not this is where they should be putting their investment. And I think they should. But their domestic constituencies will not permit the kind of spending on defense that our domestic constituency permits. The Germans are dropping their defense spending and reducing the size of their armed forces. Whereas we've held steady for some years, and now Congress is passing laws to increase the size of our army.

The American people have always been more willing to shoulder this burden than our European friends, particularly now when the Cold War is over. There is no Iron Curtain, there is no Soviet Union, and the average European citizen looking around sees some of these out-of-the-way places like Afghanistan and the Balkans and Iraq. They're willing to do a little there, but they're not willing to put up to three or four percent of their GDP into defense spending the way we are."

Powell would probably make a great president, but I have a feeling that after he feels he has done all he can in his current position, he'll want to just go back to running volunteer organizations and banging on Volvo's. I can't blame him, he definitely deserves it.

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

How not to deal with Islamic Terrorism.........

......(Via LGF)

Incredible article detailing the evolution of Islamic Jihad over the internet in this months New Yorker by Lawrence Wright...Here's a link....

It also examines the disasterous consequences of attempting to appease Islamic Terrorists, most specifically in regards to Spain and the Islamic fundamentalists attempts to revive the Crusades by making their Jihad out to be a war against Christianity. They apparently want Spain back. Not so sure what Spain thinks about this.

Perhaps the most telling point of the article in regards to appeasement is the discovery that the Madrid Train bombings in which hundreds were murdered and thousands injured were most likely planned before even 9/11/01.

"One of the most sobering pieces of information to come out of the investigation of the March 11th bombings is that the planning for the attacks may have begun nearly a year before 9/11. In October, 2000, several of the suspects met in Istanbul with Amer Azizi, who had taken the nom de guerre Othman Al Andalusi—Othman of Al Andalus. Azizi later gave the conspirators permission to act in the name of Al Qaeda, although it is unclear whether he authorized money or other assistance—or, indeed, whether Al Qaeda had much support to offer. In June, Italian police released a surveillance tape of one of the alleged planners of the train bombings, an Egyptian housepainter named Rabei Osman Sayed Ahmed, who said that the operation “took me two and a half years.” Ahmed had served as an explosives expert in the Egyptian Army. It appears that some kind of attack would have happened even if Spain had not joined the Coalition—or if the invasion of Iraq had never occurred."

As it is said, President Bush, FASTER PLEASE.

Update: Wow, who'd a thunk it...This truly is a head scratcher- REPORT: IRAN LINKED TO MADRID BOMBINGS. So you're saying the Iranian Government might be involved with International Islamic Terrorism? I'll be damned..

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

I'm Irish, so I don't really need a reason to drink........

......but the latest good news about Red Wine certainly doesn't hurt.

I personally prefer a good Chinon, but I'm biased because I got to visit the area in the Loire Valley when I was younger.

Slow news day, so I leave you with a gratuitous Shark picture in honor of the passing of Shark Week on the Discovery Channel.

Sharks RULE!! Puny Humans...

Monday, August 02, 2004

For My Best Bro in Beantown...............

.........He's like family to me, known him since I was two years old. He's still in Taxachusetts, and has never really left to live anywhere else. He's a smart dude, and has done quite well for himself- beautiful wife, cute kid, nice house, decent job- I'm proud of the guy. He deserves it too, as he's worked very hard to get where he's at today.

Needless to say, we've had our political differences in the last couple of months. Today he decided to call me and rant on about how Iraq never attacked the US, Bush is an idiot, the Bin Ladens got a free ride out of the US after 9/11, etc.etc-your basic Moore conspiracy drivel.

So I promised I would put up some links to counter what he's arguing.

Iraq and the US-

Previous Attacks on the US (scroll to the bottom for more links)

Iraq and Terrorism

Winds of Change Report on the Senate Intelligence Committee Report

Stephen Hayes- Iraq and Al-Qaeda, The Clinton View of Iraq-Al-Qaeda Ties

Post 9/11 Flights-Bin Laden Family

Snopes Hashes it out.

If my best Beantwon Bro reads this and has any comments or points of contention to raise, feel free to hit the comments below....and bring it big or don't come at all...

"Jack, why are you unpopular with the Chicago Police department? Jack?"

Oh no he didn't.....................

.......John Kerry's senior foreign-policy adviser to the campaign, James P. Rubin, has some thoughts on how he will deal with Iran and their Nuclear Weapons program.

"John Kerry regards an Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism armed with nuclear weapons as unacceptable. He has a multiple-part strategy that is much more realistic than the Bush administration's. One is to rejoin and work through the international legal framework on arms control. That will give greater force to the major powers if they have to deal with violators. Secondly, he has laid out, I think in the most comprehensive way in modern memory, a program to secure nuclear materials around the world—particularly in the former Soviet Union but also in the places where research reactors have existed that could be susceptible to proliferation. The point is to try to prevent Iran from ever getting this material surreptitiously. Thirdly, he has proposed that rather than letting the British, the French and the Germans do this themselves, that we together call the bluff of the Iranian government, which claims that its only need is energy. And we say to them: "Fine, we will provide you the fuel that you need if Russia fails to provide it." Participating in such a diplomatic initiative makes it more likely to succeed."

Say what now? You're going to "call Irans bluff"?


"Iran's top diplomat said Saturday the country won't accept any new internationally imposed obligations regarding its nuclear program and that the world must recognize Iran as a nuclear-capable nation.

"We won't accept any new obligations," Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi told reporters, suggesting a toughening of Iran's position two days before the 35-nation board of governors of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog, meets to discuss Iran's nuclear program.

"Iran has a high technical capability and has to be recognized by the international community as a member of the nuclear club," Kharrazi said at a press conference. "This is an irreversible path."

The IAEA has wrestled for more than a year with what to do regarding what the United States and its allies say is a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program. Iran has rejected such allegations, saying its nuclear program is geared toward generating electricity, not making an atom bomb.

Kharrazi insisted Saturday that Iran won't give up its development of the nuclear fuel cycle, the steps for processing and enriching uranium necessary for both nuclear energy and nuclear weapons. Iran says it has achieved the full cycle, but is not now enriching uranium."

A country with a vast oil supply needs to have Nuclear reactors for energy? Are we that stupid?

And Rubin wants to "call their bluff"? What the hell is he talking about? They already said they have the fuel and are processing it whichever way they want. There isn't any grey here. Iran wants Nukes. They are working with the Soviets to make them. Our own intelligence services are showing that Iran has learned well from Saddam how to hide their activities at their nuclear complexes.

I posted about this before, but just to jog everyones memory-

Let's observe.

Lavizan-Shian Site- August 11-03

-March 22-04

There is no bluff to call Mr Rubin. They are trying to make nukes. They have stated numerous times that they want to nuke Israel as soon as they get them. Israel will not wait for a green light to pre-empt this. The pictures above indicate that Iran is working to actively conceal their efforts in regards to Nuclear weapons, so having the toothless international community get involved would be a waste of time. So would sending more "fuel" to Iran to "call their bluff". We need to work with the freedom and reform movements in Iran and help them overthrow the Mullahs. We should not be negotiating with the government at all. For more information why this policy would be a disaster, please click the Blog Iran link to your right.