Kalroy Was Here

Eighth man from Adam, an artificer of metals

Saturday, June 29, 2002

Wahoo
Would you believe one single errant quotation mark freaked my earlier posting attempts out, and messed the [edit] link up on the blogger interface so I couldn't edit them? Ugh. Well, it looks like it worked this time.

Update: And I finally checked blogger's help section to learn how to delete the extraneous postings.

Kal
Gotta love the UN
Many Americans have a problem with the UN. Some have several problems, as I myself do, with the UN. But what is my biggest problem with the UN?

The UN is an organization started with the most laudable goal of keeping the world from erupting into yet another World War. That's probably the biggest reason for its initial existance, but it has been corrupted by enemies of those principles held dear by the very countries (Britain and her cowboy kids) who first proposed its formation. Maybe it's the 160 out of 177 nations that thought Syria, a supporter of terrorism against the free world, deserved a place on the UN Security Council? Maybe it's their capitulation to France on the Bosnia thing? It could be their deceitful use of the IPCC's research to promote the anti-American Kyoto Treaty. Oh heck, it could be a lot of things.

Right now, however, my biggest gripe is that out of an estimated 1.5 billion people who were to watch the World Cup match between Turkey and South Korea, there was one less person watching it. Alright, it's not so much that there was a soccer fan deprived, but why he was deprived. President Kim Dae-jung cancelled plans with his cabinet to watch South Korea play Turkey because North Korean warships fired on, and sank, a South Korean warship, after crossing the UN demarcated sea line.
He was deprived because there is still a war going on between North and South Korea. There is still a war going on because the UN's definition of peace is appeasement and status quo. Certainly the UN forces fighting against North Korea could have helped that country win the war that really got rolling when North Korea, and her allies, invaded South Korea. The UN, however, choose to maintain the status quo, and appease the communist nations. Because of this the war never ended. We can blame the US (everyone else does) for not disobeying the UN, but they were following UN orders (just like they did when withdrawing in the Gulf War). We can blame North Korea, after all the entire mess started with them. We could blame the PRC who fomented the whole thing back in the day.

Naw, I'm placing the blame squarely on the UN. Their continuing policy of status quo and appeasement is what has allowed this situation to continue. The UN allowed a belligerant government, who is allowing its citizens to starve despite tons of food shipped to them by South Korea, to remain in power. All to retain the status quo of the day, and to appease the communist nations of The PRC and the USSR. The UN, by this policy, allowed thousands, if not tens of thousands or even more, Kurds to die at the hands of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. The UN, by this policy, has allowed a terrorist supporting nation, yup Iraq again, to support terrorism around the world and develop weapons of mass destruction. The UN, by this policy, has allowed Iraq to fire upon American and British airmen who are enforcing the UN's 'no fly zone.'

Now North Korea says that the South fired first, and if I were NBC or NPR I'd probably go with that story, but South Korea (like Israel) happens to be one of America's allies and as such I'm going to give South Korea the benefit of the doubt until we find out otherwise.


If the UN had committed to real and lasting peace by finishing the war, started by North Korea and her allies, this would not have happened. Millions of North Koreans would not be starving, five South Korean sailors would, most likely, be at home right now, and one more soccer fan would've been able to watch the game.

Kal
It's getting smaller
Glenn Frazier linked to my page in regards to comments I made about hisBlack Irish post. Now the post, "My name is O'Hanlon..." is a really good one. Unlike my posts his is quite thoughtful and it's almost certainly not a first draft (all my posts are first drafts lacking deep thought, spell-checking, or grammer checking). Now Glenn Frazier's page is one of my daily checks, thanks to Instapundit.
I do have another comment on the subject. I've heard others (TV, coffee-house, etc) mention the situation in Ireland as being equivelant to the strife between Jews and Arabs in and around Israel. I don't see the Irish situtation as one of religion or race(I know that has nothing to do with Glenn Frazier's blog) but a political that happens to be drawn against predominantly religious lines. This is simply because, historically, most Irish have been Catholic, and the English were Anglican (protestant). So it makes sense that the lines would tend to be visible in terms of religion also, but I'm pretty sure most people with passing familliarity will already know this.
Oh, and as an aside, Padraic is a good and strong name. In fact one of my oldest son's middle names (yup one of several middle names) is Padraig.



Kal

Update: Wowsa this one isn't even really a rough draft. When I read it there were words missing (in, and, the) so I actually went back and stuck them in. Darnit, it's getting smaller, I'm checking my grammer (okay, only to a point), but what's next? Becoming responsible and thoughtful? Ugh.

Friday, June 28, 2002

"I'm not a terrorist, but I play one on TV!"
Steven Berkoff is a British actor. It's not a name most people would be familliar with, I'm not, and I'm a big movie fan. His face, however, is easily recognizable. He's been in Rambo, A Clockwork Orange, Beverly Hills Cop, other movies. He plays a great bad guy, but in real life he's an actor, not a "bad guy." I think it'd be a safe bet to say that he's not a terrorist, and that he doesn't run around supporting terrorist nations. So here's the thing, the INS is deporting him for overstaying his visa by one day! The Guardian and The Miami Herald both report on this, though I found out about it on Fox News this afternoon. According to Fox News (and The Miami Herald) Mr. Berkoff's visa had been expired for one day, when the INS picked him up.

Here's the thing, there are a large number of aliens in the US who are from countries that support terrorism who stick around after their visas expire. There are a number of aliens who have overstayed their visas who personally knew the terrorists who attacked America on September 11th. They're still around. Osama Awadallah who was roomies with one of the terrorists and whose phone number was found in the car left by the terrorists is still wandering around the US. He was brought in for questioning, and lied, questioned in front of a grand jury, and lied, charged with perjury, and lied yet again. So this guy is freed by Judge Shira Scheindlin. A young man with definite terrorist connections (though no proof that he is a terrorist or that he helped them), from a country known for terrorists and a member of both a religion and a culture known for terrorism. He's wandering around.

Then there is Mr. Berkoff. Citizen of not just an ally, but a friend to the US. No known terrorist buddies. No known connection to terrorists. Not a member of a culture or religion known for terrorism. He's deported for overstaying his visa by one day.

Now I'm asking myself, how is it, that with the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens they just happen to notice this single, low-threat, individual and be there on the scene the day after his visa expires? Is there something we don't know about him (I wouldn't put money on a terrorist sleeper theory)? Is the INS getting incredibly silly (well, here I could make a profit)?

Perhaps if the INS and it's officials spent more time going after high-risk, low-contributing aliens and stopped targetting low risk, non-tanned, non-muslim, non-arab aliens they'd have a better track record. But then this is the organization that keeps Aguilar on, even after he suggested spending what little money the INS has on coddling people bent on breaking America's laws.




Kal
Hunch, errr....
Tim Blair noticed the PC HB Media.



Kal
See, I'm still not getting it.
Middle-East Realities has this little blurb about how today's Gay Pride Pararde in Tel Aviv is going.
It seems to me that the Democratic party and liberals in general are very interested in issues affected gay and lesbians (ahem, so are one heck of a lot of conservatives, but let's ignore them for a minute). Considering that there is a Gay Pride parade going on in Tel Aviv, yet in many Muslim country's the closest thing they have is a big "Drop a wall on the infidel homo" parties; here's my question, Why?

Why would anyone who supports gay rights support culture, religion, and governments who still stone gays to death? We're talking about a people whose idea of public works is building the walls to knock down on people who are gay.

Don't get me wrong, I'm just as homophobic as anyone else, I still get really grossed out by two guys with mustaches making out (okay even without the facial hair). But to even consider smackin' someone because they're gay, let alone killing them, is utterly reprehensible. So why are so many bastions of gay rights supporting the point of view of Islamists and Palestinian Arabs, over those of America and Israel? I just don't get it.

Oh, and as an aside, I'm wondering how American Jews who support Israel are beginning to feel about their traditional Democratic leanings and support of the SFSU/Berkeley/etc culture.



Kal
Nobody's Perfect

Okay, so I got the last item by checking out Google's news search engine. It's a neat nifty. I was curious as to whether any more scandals had happened at my high school alma mater and all I got for a search of Kamehameha was yet another news piece on The Rock playing Kamehameha the Great. Interesting reading, but certainly not anything remotely related to The Kamehameha Schools. That's rather to be expected, considering it would be local news, but considering the scandal hit the richest school in the US, and one of the most unique schools in the US, you'd think there'd be someone, somewhere aside from the local press who mentions it. Then again, that is probably nothing more than my own vanity.


Kal
PC Gone Amok, yet again

The Bell Ringer of Notre Dame is the title of a new adaption of The Hunchback of Notre Dame and yet another idiotic attempt at catering to the politically correct crowd.
We have not changed the novel in any way, we simply felt changing the title would cause less offence of people,

Ummmm, actually they did change the novel, they changed the very title. I mean I could understand and accept their premise if they had simply changed the name back to the original French (Notre Dame de Paris) but they didn't. Perhaps I'm taking this incorrectly, but that tells me that these people shouldn't have even bothered to adapt a book they knew so little about. The article mentions the original name, but c'mon, even I knew the name and I'm a sci-fi fan who could care less about most "classics." Heck, The Return of the Native bored me to tears.
New titles for old books/movies:
Moby Vaginally Impaired

The Return of the Aboriginal Inhabitant

Taming of the Agressive Non-Stereotypical Assertive Female

The Gallic Impreialistic Aggression

and

I, Inorganic-American




Kal

Wednesday, June 26, 2002

More Red on the Web
Instapundit has a link to Red Skelton's version of the Pledge of Allegiance. Heck Instapundit has a lot of interesting stuff about a lot of things. It's a daily trip for me.

Kal
Red's Pledge
Tonight on Hannity and Colmes, on the Fox News Channel, there was a small presentation. Red Skelton's wife sent them a copy of Red Skelton's version of the Pledge of Allegiance. Appearing to be vellum bound in a beautiful folio, the item itself was beautiful. Its beauty paled in comparison, however, when they displayed a picture of a young Red Skelton, and played the audio of Red Skelton reciting his own version of the Pledge of Allegiance. It was moving, beautiful, and it actually made this ornery millwright's eyes water.

With the recent court decision and the controvery surrounding it (one senator calling the judges "irresponsible" and "stupid") this was an excellent time for Mr. Skelton's words. No matter what happens, with or without "under God", Mr. Skelton's interpretation of the Pledge of Allegiance will always be timely and beautiful.

The Shriners, that bastion of America's values and tradition, have a page with Red Skelton's words and voice. I hope the few who make it here go there and enjoy Red Skelton's voice and words.


Kal
Hyphenated Americans

When I was growing up we never used phrases such as "Japanese American", or "Irish American." If someone said, "What nationality are you," I'd answer with, "Hawaiian, Chinese, Portagee." I've had friends get a bit miffed when I forget myself and use these terms. They remind me that my nationality is American. I reply with "of course," but in my mind I'm thinking, "Well, duh, I knew that, what's your problem?"

I was thinking about it yesterday, while polluting my lungs and enjoying the sun, and it hit me; growing up we never said it, because we all assumed it was a given. We never used terms like "Asian American" because we never had to give any thought to being American. We all knew we were Americans, and we all knew that anything else came in second to being American. We never said it, because it went without saying.

I've always had a problem with the hyphenated Americans. I do consider it devisive, but until recently I had never really bothered to try to put my finger on it. So, here goes... I have a problem with it because it feels like they have to remind people that they are Americans. Not because people consider them less than fully American, but because they don't feel American. They're hyphenated Americans because they're not all that American. Oh sure they're American citizens, but they don't feel it to the point where it becomes a total non-issue. They define themselves as hyphenated Americans because the part in front of the hyphen has as much worth to them as the part behind the hyphen. If they felt themselves to be whole-heartedly American, they wouldn't have to bother with the hyphen, because it would be a given that they were Americans.

Let's get one thing straight here; I'm not saying that this is how it really is. I'm saying that this is how it feels to me. This is the vibe I get when talking to people who insist on being a hyphenated American, rather than an American who happens to be Cantonese, or Fillipino, or French.


Kal

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Way to go Putin!
PejmanPundit links to a nice little blurb in the Russia Journal online that I thought deserved another link, if only to bump up its googleability.
No Matter How Educated
No matter how educated a person is there are times when people still manage to throw out over-worn 'aunt Nellieisms' like they were reasoned facts.
Now usually I like Judge Andrew P. Napolitano, legal analyst over at Foxnews , but his
op-ed
on Foxnews.com really bothered me. It seems the only time people consider race is when the name differs from the nationality. Consider the outcry at the phrase "rag-head," then compare it to "cheese eating surrender-monkey." He disregards the fact that the overwhelming majority of our enemies are Arabs. We didn't choose for it to be that way, they did.
You have been kicked off an airplane flight because the local police are allowing some passengers to vote to exclude others on the basis of race.

Well heck, this kind of thing happens to caucasians all the time today. It's not Arabs who are being thoroughly searched at airports. I just came back from Denver and I spent one hell of a lot of time at airports and I watched who was being pulled aside for checks. I got checked, but then even my 'purty deck shoes' have steel-toes in them. I was concerned about bomb-sniffing dogs, simply because these are also the same shoes (electro-static discharge soles) that I used to use for blasting, so they probably have some trace of RDX on them. I saw people who looked Arab/Persian/etc, and I don't recall seeing a single one checked. I saw blacks, Chinese, Mexicans and a hell of a lot of caucasians checked. Granted there are more caucasians in the pool of eligible searchees, but I'm still not convinced that people who look like they belong on the Swedish Bikini Team are a tangible threat.
You must avoid talking to the federal police at all costs because one unacceptable or refused answer and you can be deported without charges, without trial, without judicial review, without ever seeing your family again, and without settling your business.

See now, I fail to see how deporting people who are guests in our country is a violation of their rights. When you invite or allow someone into your house, it is you who have a say in how long they stay (or if they get adopted) not them, and certainly not the next door neighbor who loves that you are feeding his kids for him. Also, no where in The Constitution does it say that anyone has the right to a trial or judicial review before being deported. That's not a right, it's a matter of legislature. In certain cases we have laws respecting such instances, but it is NOT a constitutionally gauranteed right. Judge Napolitano should know this. Hell, I'm a welder (well a millwright now) and I know the constitution better than that.
The laws were supposed to be fair and liberty guaranteed, but some politically powerful people want your liberty to be sacrificed for their safety. It wasn't supposed to be this way.

Well here he is entirely correct. The Constitution specifically mentions "ourselves and our posterity" as being "ensured the blessings of liberty." It does not say "guests who are here as students or tourists, or who break our laws by sneaking into our country without permission." Again, Judge Napolitano is a Judge but he's probably never watched school-house rock and so seems unfamilliar with The Constitution of the United States of America.
When Benjamin Franklin wrote, "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety," he could not have even contemplated the pain and fear facing many innocent people here today.

Excellent point, and in his editorial, Judge Napolitano actually uses Mr. Franklin's quote in context (unlike a number of other people). The problem is that Mr. Franklin was not speaking about how we treat our enemies, or citizens of their countries. He was talking about Americans giving up their own rights, not recinding privelages we afford guests and invaders.
Until 1776, our government didn't recognize personal liberties; but the Declaration of Independence, from which the violence of 1776 sprang, did.

Oh boy, here we go again. Ummmm, the British did recognize some personal liberties, but for the most part not as we know them, and not to the extent that we know them. He also seems to be unaware that those concepts of liberty sprang from Brits and British organizations and thought. They didn't just materialize out of thin air.
Thus, the theory of the Declaration has been that the rights enumerated in the Constitution are natural, that is, they belong to all persons by virtue of our humanity.

Totally true. However, yet again, Judge Napolitano ignores The Constitution which is quite clear that it protects those rights for Americans. The Constitution does not say that foreigners have no rights, only that it ensures them for Americans. Frankly it is the duty of other countries to ensure those rights for their citizens; it is not our duty to do it for them. It is the duty of those foreign citizens to create a government that gaurantees those rights. So unless they want to secede and petition for statehood with the US, they have their own responsibilities.
The Constitution requires probable cause - specific reasons to persuade a judge that a specific person more likely than not committed a specific crime - before the government can arrest anyone.

Yup. But guess what, being in the US illegally is a crime.
Whom will it incarcerate or deport? Mexican busboys who look like Arabs, Middle Eastern chemical engineering students who don't wear American flags, political radicals who hate all wars?

How about foreign guests and illegals who advocate the overthrow of the United States, or who call for violence and the death of our own citizens? How about those who support our enemies (or those of our allies), or who give aid and comfort to those enemies? What about those who raise money for terrorists and America's enemies? Man, it's not rocket science. If a "Mexican busboy" is here illegally, and is yelling Mecha slogans, deport him. If "Middle Eastern chemical engineering students" are raising money for Hammas, or associating with known Al-Qaeda members, deport them. Sheez.
What freedoms are we defending if, in the name if freedom, the government can take them away because of a person's appearance or nationality?

Gotta love this idiotic statement. According to Judge Napolitano, we should not take away the freedoms of an Arab terrorist supporter simply because he happens to be an Arab.

The feeling I get (could be wrong, I'm just an average Joe) is that Judge Napolitano also has a problem denying entry to people just because they are members of enemy nations, or belong to a race with a proven track record of putting out more anti-American terrorists than any other in the history of the planet. Certainly not all Arabs are terrorists, only a miniscule proportion are; but the overwhelming majority of terrorists are Arab, and almost every single anti-American terrorist is Muslim. Should we ignore them simply because of the color of their skin? There are two kinds of racism; singling out a person (or group of people) because of the color of their skin and not singling out a person (or group of people) because of the color of their skin. In this case racism is a danger to the lives of our citizens, and on the scale of importance the Constitution give higher precedence to life than to liberty or the pursuit of happiness. It's pretty clear about that, and even if it weren't we have a bunch of moldy founding fathers who wrote all kinds of letters and treatise to make it clear for us; too bad lawyers and judiciarys ignore them.

Monday, June 24, 2002

My Penis is Shrinking

Live from the WTC has a little reference to yet another bit of Warbloggerwatch siliness. What's nifty is that if hits to one's blog is inversely proportional to penis size, then I'm "Bwana Dick," hung like a horse, "Endowed beyond your wildest, Clearasil spattered fantasies." Of course I've recently gotten something on the order of three or four hits.
So my penis must be shrinking. I could check, but if I simply buy into Warbloggerwatch's arguments, blindly, without analysis or logical testing, then at least I can run around pretending that I might be a threat to Ron Jeremy's job.

Kal


Humanizing Monsters?

Well, over at USS Clueless there's a nice little piece about logic on the left in response to an article. I enjoyed the piece, but a quote from Demosthenes' treatise caught my eye. It's a sticking point that has bugged me ever since I dated a Psych major from Cal State. She used to disparage any de-humanizing of America's enemies during wartime. Our tastes in movies may have crossed paths (Like Water for Chocolate and Casablanca) but they often remained on opposite sides of the continent (Flying Leathernecks and that Ya Ya Sisterhood movie). My penchant for heroic man movies meant that words like "Nip, Hynie, and Wop" were going to show up in war movies made 'back in da day.' As such we had a few discussions on the subject of de-humanizing the enemy.

The phrase that caught my eye was, "The Hutus, the Germans, the Iraqis, the Italians, heck, even the Mongols were human beings as well, and any strategy used to defeat them needs to recognize that simple fact."
Unfortunately that is historically untrue. Nobody cared that the Mongols were human when fighting them. They were portrayed, in both literature and art, as demons and devils. Would thinking of them loving their children have helped anyone kill them and push them back? The Germans were "The Hun in the Sun" waaaaay back when.
There is a second problem I have with humanizing the enemy. Given a choice between America and her citizens and anyone else (especially our enemies, and to a lesser extent the enemies of our allies) I choose America and her citizens. Now, as heinous as it sounds I don't want a single American soldier killed because they hesitated to kill "that father of three who loves his children and simply has values that call for the downfall of the 'Free World', though those values are as valid as those held by members of the 'Free World.'" I would much rather he killed a "Jerry, Nip, Raghead, Pinko, Gook," without hesitation than die because he spent to much time dwelling on the humanity of his enemy.
This is not the same as thinking your enemy is an idiot, or purposefully underestimating his ability (this may be what Demosthenes actually meant). This is making it easier to do a distasteful, wicked, and horrible thing that may be necessary because sometimes the alternative is unthinkably worse.

Media Bias?

So, who is more biased? CNN or Fox? You'll notice I left out the networks, simply because a couple of their prime movers are biased towards ratings and would be willing to sacrifice Americans for 'the story.'

Okay, back to the subject. Here's the problem; other than in math 'fair and balanced' are subjective terms. CNN has found this out the hard way since Fox News came on the scene. Certainly CNN thought they were FAB (fair and balanced), but that opinion was out of touch with that of their viewers and, indeed, with that of a majority of Americans. Critics, who are likewise out of touch with 'Joe America', charge that Fox has a right-wing bias. From what I've seen it's not that Fox is biased, it's simply that when you present the news (and opinions) that are more inline with that of most Americans you present a more conservative and 'right-wing' view. Sure CNN and Fox are biased, modern journalism is sifted through human beings, and as such only the driest presentation of facts can escape some bias; the difference is simply that Fox is biased more in line with most Americans. This is part of why Fox has trounced all of their cable competition. It's not that they are right-wing, but that they are actually quite centrist.

Joe America is not ultra-liberal, even when being a registered Democrat. Look at California. California is a staunchly democratic state; that voted down gay marriages, voted to bar illegal aliens from recieving many of the same benefits as citizens(cheap tuition, welfare, etc) and voted down multi-lingual education. These are three watershed issues of liberals and democrats, and yet a staunchly democratic state voted on these issues in landslide rates that make it look as if California is a hard-core right-wing state. Why is that? Well, the democratic party suffers from the same affliction as CNN. They feel they are more centrist and less radical then they really are. They are out of touch with 'Joe Democratic American' in the same way that CNN is out of touch with 'Joe America.' I haven't considered if the Republican party suffers from the same affliction. To be honest I haven't seen (and haven't really looked for) the same things that piqued my curiosity with the Democrats.

Sunday, June 23, 2002

Yeah Right

According to Al-Qaida Spokesman Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Bin Laden is still alive. Of course the Al-Qaida has been soooooo trustworthy to date. Not to mention the simple fact that the message is NOT coming from Mullah Omar or binladen himself. Frankly I doubt that either are alive. If they had been we would have already seen a videotape of either of them holding up a current newspaper, or commenting on their latest attack against the Western World. But we haven't seen or heard anything at all like that. If bin Laden were alive it would be quite odd, considering his penchant for videotape and ranting at the top of his voice.

Thursday, June 20, 2002

King Kamehameha
So I'm in Denver yesterday, reading USA Today, and there was a lil' blurb. It seems "The Rock" has been talking to Sony about starring in a feature film as King Kamehameha the Great.
I think he's big enough, though probably too good looking to play Tama'a.

Still, here's hoping they have a good treatment, script and director.

Thursday, June 06, 2002

Oh this is rich.

So I'm checking out the stats for this page on gostats and I had a good chuckle over the effects of not updating your HTML code. It seems that I have had 72 unique visitors yesterday. Certainly it's a possibility, but doubtful. Consider that the only comments existant (is that a real word?) on this page are my little tests, and that no one knows about this page, and there is really very little to interest anyone on this page.

The page is really nothing more than a rant page. It doesn't have the witty and pithy commentaries and opinions that other pages do, and my insights are hardly deep and unique. Of course I do consider my opinions to be pretty durn solid, but then so do a lot of people who I wouldn't invite into my home, let alone share a liferaft with; so that pretty much shows how valid one's own opinions of oneself can be.

Here's what is wonderous about my '72' unique visitors, they are all time-travellers. Seriously, they really are. They all hit my site on Wednesday, December 31st, 1969. At least I was actually alive at the time. Perhaps it's a delayed side-effect of walking on the moon that year, or just maybe time-travellers from 1969 take a genuine interest in what I have to say. I mean, so long as they're just viewing the site and not leaving lava lamps around where I might trip on them, I guess I'm okay with it.
Pejman Pundit calls this"Unbelievable."

Ms. Bryant is quoted as saying "How could I have known?" she continues with "I couldn't have known, prior to Sept. 11. I don't think anyone else would have either, if they'd been in my shoes that day,"

Reading the article I realized that she could not possibly have known that this person was a member of a group at war with the US and responsible for the deaths of many Americans. I think the proper question, however, is how could you have possibly not been suspicious? The entire episode would have sent my hackles rising. Her account of Atta was suspicious beyond the point where her excuses make sense. It's far more likely that she simply, didn't care enough to make a phone call (whether it helped or not, she should have tried). Perhaps, she thought that airing such suspicions about an overtly sexist Arab would constitute bigotry? Hey, that's the battle-cry of Arab organizations across the globe today.

Wednesday, June 05, 2002

Mid-East Realities has a little blurb about Sheikh Al-Ansari from Qatar University. I've read some of his stuff, and it brought to mind a conversation Corky and I had the other day. Islam's biggest problem is the lack of a Martin Luther. Al-Ansari is right when he says Islam has stagnated. In many important ways it has, and that has allowed two-hundred years of Wahab teachings dominate Islam. I know it's characterized as an extremist faction, but that's hardly the case. Wahabism is a major influence on Islam all over the world, and can be seen in the governments of almost all Islamic nations; it also rears its ugly head among moderates living in the free world. It certainly wasn't Sufis who wanted Muslims to be tried under Sharia law in Britain.

Tuesday, June 04, 2002

I've always been a fan of John Woo's films. I don't know the man personally, and I had never considered his politics before but tonight on FOXNews (Shepard Smith's show) he made a statement that will perpetually brand him as yet another "Aunt Nellie Idiot." "War is never good for anyone." On the face of it, it seems like a reasonable comment. We all know war is horrific, disgusting, and something that should be avoided when possible. But the simple fact that Mr. Woo has neglected to consider is that war is sometimes good for people. The allies waging war against Germany was certainly good for a number of jews, it was good for the French and the Dutch. The US waging war against Japan was certainly good for a number of Chinese, and for the Phillipines. South Korea, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia are certainly in a better state because the 'Free World' waged war.

In all these cases waging war, or continuing war was a good thing for a number of people. Certainly no war in the very first place (Germany not attacking anyone, North Korea not attacking South Korea, et al) would have been better. However, despite what many say, war and conflict is not a dance; it may take two to tango, but it only takes one to begin conflict.

Saturday, June 01, 2002

Well, uh...
I was at Beers Across America, Sgt. Stryker's old place, and came across his "How Jedi are you" pip. So, okay, though no one will ever see it ('woe is me, lol') Here's mine.


:: how jedi are you? ::
So, for the first time I'm checking out Warblogger Watch. I'd heard of it, but never read it before. I doubt I'll ever go there again. It's not that the author's politics, beliefs, or what he supports bothers me (though they probably do), it's that I've been spoiled by the likes of USS Clueless and Beers Across America. Rather than rant and insult, they actually pick apart the arguments of others and try to make a real point. But then, their point of view can better support such actions.