Monday, January 31, 2005

91Ghost’s National Drug Policy -by 91ghost

Let me preface my comments by saying that all of you constitutional and governmental experts out there might as well save your breath, or, if you so wish, go ahead and spew away about my drug policy outlined below…I don’t care. I fully realize that this is a crackpot theory that is not steeped in constitutional principle. I fully realize that such a policy stands a snowball’s chance in hell of ever seeing the light of day. With that said, I firmly believe though, that this is the only policy that would actually WORK:

Yes, Marijuana would be legal---with the following general stipulations:

Legal age of 18 and over.

Not just stiff, but HARSH penalties for the following: being high while driving, operating machinery---basically any situation that being high in could potentially end anger other people.

No public smoking. No smoking around children—even (and perhaps especially) in the confines of your own house.

Distribution of marijuana to a minor merits an automatic minimum jail sentence of 5 years.

Mild, and only mild, mushrooms would be treated the same as marijuana.

Peyote and other naturally grown drugs used by Indians (oh, oops, I mean Native Americans—sorry there thought police!) for religious and ritualistic purposes would be legal within those confines.

Marijauna and mild mushrooms sold commercially would be taxed. The proceeds of the marijuana tax would fund the following enforcement and rehabilitation campaign regarding “hard” drugs:

The basic, underlying philosophy of the enforcement and rehabilitation campaign is that the users/addicts would be truly treated for their addictions, and the sellers would be truly punished.

There will be a graduated scale of punishment for all dealers of hard drugs:

The International and National Kingpins: automatic death penalty.

The regional, state, county, and city kingpins: automatic death penalty.

The neighborhood kingpins: automatic life in prison-no chance of parole.

The dumb little idiot who thinks he’s cool for dealing a bag of coke here, and a bit of heroin there, and a tab of LSD there: automatic 20 years in prison-no chance of parole.

Anybody caught dealing a “hard” drug to a minor: automatic death penalty.

All addicts will undergo a thorough mandatory residential medical and psychological rehabilitation program.

The following is the international side of my drug policy:

THE BORDERS ARE MILITARIZED AND SEALED (also for, of course, general homeland security reasons---imagine that, huh?)

Anybody caught importing hard drugs into our nation will be treated as if they are importing a dirty bomb: they will be immediately field executed.

Any nation’s government that knowingly, whether it be tacit or implicit, condones the production and exportation of hard drugs into America will be put on notice: they will have six months to clean house. After six months, if their house is not cleaned, we will clean their drug fields and labs for them: WITH NAPALM.

The following is the domestic gang side of my drug policy:

All known criminal gangs (such as the Bloods, Crips, Latin Kings, M-13, and the whole host of those cowardly bitches) will be properly viewed as enemies of the state, and will be treated accordingly. National Guard infantry, cavalry, and military police units will be mobilized, and in conjunction with local police will conduct sweeps and raids in all known criminal gang neighborhoods----the gangs will be violently wiped out-all members will be either killed in the combat, or if they survive, will be put away in prison for life, it’s as simple as that.

So there it is folks. Huff and puff away.

In the Sandbox...

Mortar Man

"It's the Soldier"
By: Charles M. Province

"A protest raged on a courthouse lawn,
Round a makeshift stage they charged on,
Fifteen hundred or more they say,
Had come to burn a Flag that day.
A boy held up the folded Flag,
Cursed it, and called it a dirty rag.
An OLD MAN pushed through the angry crowd,
With a rusty shotgun shouldered proud.

His uniform jacket was old and tight,
He had polished each button, shiny and bright.
He crossed that stage with a soldier's grace,
Until he and the boy stood face to face.

"Is worth dying for, good men are dead,
So you can stand on this courthouse lawn,
And talk us down from dusk to dawn,
But before any Flag gets burned today,

My father died on a foreign shore,
In a war they said would end all war.
But Tommy and I wasn't even full grown,
Before we fought in a war of our own.
And Tommy died on Iwo Jima's beach,
In the shadow of a hill he couldn't quite reach
Where five good men raised this Flag so high,

I got this bum leg that I still drag,
Fighting for this same old Flag.
Now there's but one shot in this old gun,
So now it's time to decide which one,
Which one of you will follow our lead,
To stand and die for what you believe?
For as sure as there is a rising sun,
You'll burn before this Flag burns, son.

Now this riot never came to pass.
The crowd got quiet and that can of gas,
Got set aside as they walked away
To talk about what they had heard this day.
And the boy who had called it a "dirty rag",
Handed the OLD SOLDIER the folded Flag.

So the battle of the Flag this day was won
By a tired OLD SOLDIER with a rusty gun,
Who for one last time, had to show to some,
This flag may fade, yet these colors don't run!

Sunday, January 30, 2005


...I Congratulate the Iraqi people that defied the odds and went out to vote...and the United States Military that made that possibility a reality!

"Some came on crutches, others walked for miles then struggled to read the ballot, but across Iraq, millions turned out to vote Sunday, defying insurgents who threatened a bloodbath." (source)

"...After a slow start, men and women - many holding babies - formed long lines at some polling stations and officials said turnout appeared higher than expected, although it was too soon to tell for sure." (source)

"Polling stations officially closed as of 5 p.m., but the election commission said anyone still in line would be allowed to vote. An Iraqi election official said that 72 percent of eligible Iraqi voters had turned out so far nationwide." (source)

"The Iraqi people have clearly turned out ... because they recognize the vote is their opportunity for a different kind of future." Condoleezza Rice -Secretary of State (source)

So when I think of all the troops that have lost their lives, all the in-fighting here in the US and the tension around the world, I say to the Iraqi people..."Earn this, earn it"...
(Saving Private Ryan)

I Know Everyone Thinks Their Kids are Cute...But Come on...

In the Sandbox...

We can't forget the Coalition Partners...Meet Andy. Cheers!

British Army Boy

"Retreat might give us a moment of respite but years of repentance at our weakness would, I believe, follow."
- Tony Blair

Saturday, January 29, 2005

It's Been a While...

...since we've done a quiz. And this is a cool one.

A 20 question Personality Test that I found over on Eric's site.
The first time I took it, it said I was an "EVIL GENIUS", but then it said everyone was getting that result due to an error with the test (that is now fixed)...I re-took it and the new result is much more fitting...

My Results:
You are a SRDL--Sober Rational Destructive Leader. This makes you a Mob Boss.
You are the ultimate alpha person and even your friends give you your space. You can't stand whiners, weaklings, schlemiels or schlemozzles. You don't make many jokes, but when you do, others laugh out loud. They must.

People often turn to you for advice, and wisely. You are calm in a crisis, cautious in a tempest, and attuned to even the finest details. Yours is the profile of a smart head for business and a dangerous enemy.

You have a natural knack for fashion and occupy a suit like a matinee idol. Your charisma is striking and without artifice. You are generous, thoughtful, and appreciate life's finer things.

Please don't kick my ass.

Of the 83511 people who have taken this quiz, 3.6 % are this type.

Wackiness: 40/100
Rationality: 60/100
Constructiveness: 40/100
Leadership: 72/100

I think that's a fairly accurate result --those that know me can weigh in... and pretty cool that I am only like 3.6% of people that took the quiz...


In the Sandbox... an Army Ranger who is at Walter Reed. He has his interests listed as Bungee jumping, rock climbing and dancing under unstable buildings. He says the picture demonstrates his versatility. What an awesome guy --sense of humor obviously intact!

Best Guy Ever...

"Artillerymen have a love for their guns which is perhaps stronger than the feeling of any soldier for his weapon or any part of his equipment."
-Brigadier General S. L. A. Marshall

Friday, January 28, 2005

Teddy *hiccup* Kennedy -War Strategist?

So... senior Democratic Senator (and OJ's mentor), Teddy Kennedy, has decided once again to weigh in (357lbs?) on the OIF war strategy... Yesterday he stated that "The U.S. military presence has become part of the problem, not part of the solution." Our troops are the problem? Wow, I would have said that would be Zarqawi and the terrorists..., but hey, that's just me I guess... (source)

Senator Chappaquiddick went on to say that "At least 12,000 U.S. troops should leave at once", but during the run up to the election wasn't he singing a different tune? (source) Didn't he say that he was "proud to be on the list with General Shinseki who warned that the United States might need more troops in Iraq"? Didn't he also say, "America cannot withdraw now, leaving Iraq to chaos or civil war, becoming a danger to us far greater than it did before. The misguided policy of the past is no excuse for a misguided policy for the future." So not sending more troops was 'misguided policy' a few months ago, but now withdrawing troops is the right policy?

It would also seem that Tequila Ted has not yet heard of the Oil for Food scandal (guess he doesn't watch FNC) as his brilliant war plan for victory also involves...and I quote:
"We need to give the UN a central role. The Administration's decision to go back to the United Nations is a first step, but it's meaningful only if the Administration is genuinely changing its policy. The real test will be whether the Administration is now willing to make the compromises necessary to persuade other countries to contribute troops to relieve our soldiers and to bring stability to Iraq. The jury is still out on whether the UN resolution will mark a real shift by the Administration."

...but then goes on to say...

"No one doubts that the United States should remain in charge of the military operation..." (source)

This was the guy that was Kerry's mentor and now we see the connection... we need more troops in Iraq (FLIP) --we need to pull troops out of Iraq (FLOP) --we need to hand over control to the UN (Flip) --we need the US to stay in charge (FLOP)...

Excuse my language...but what a fucktard!

Once again I have to say that for all the nay-sayers, and the arm-chair quarterbacking and the accusations...Not ONE person on the left has offered even the semblance of a viable alternative to the current strategy of OIF...

In the Sandbox...

forbidden bandana...

"For states that support terror, it is not enough that the consequences be
costly-they must be devastating"
-George w. Bush at a speech at The Citadel, Dec 11, 2001

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Megan's Law Reinforced...despite the ACLU

About three years ago I became obsessed with Megan's Law and sex offender registries. I guess this was/is the product of having young children, reading way too much and an Oprah show on sex offenders that outlined deviant M.O. and gave disconcerting statistics... I would email my friends the lists of registries for their neighborhoods and constantly look to see if new people had been added.

Governor Tom Ridge introduced this identification program in 1995 (and signed the Pennsylvania Act into law). Megan's Law was signed into federal law in 1996 by Bill Clinton (prompted by the brutal rape and murder of Megan Kanka). It has two components: Sex Offender registration and Community notification. PA ran into some problems with this law as certain ACLU-type groups lobbied for the sex offenders --arguing that community notification was punishing them twice, and that it was an undue burden if they had already served their sentence. PA was one of the only states that had no information on-line.

Regardless of the lack of information in the official registry, I knew it was my right to know if there was anyone in my neighborhood. I went to my local police station and told them I wanted a list and that I knew it was my right to ask. They said there was no one. I then asked one of the cops that I know and he told me there was one man --but that he's almost 90 and can barely walk now.

Yesterday, Singlemom emailed me with a zip code search for Megan's Law offenders in PA...and it works! Thank you Singlemom! In the excitement around the run up to the election and the subsequent win --I completely missed that Gov. Ed Rendell made significant changes to Megan’s Law in Law no. 92. "Most notably, information on all registered sex offenders now will be available to the public through the internet."

So now I have what I have wanted for the last three years...a list. But now I am upset because I do have a list...and it has six people on it...all in my tiny little neighborhood...and there are no addresses like other States I don't know if they are two houses down or blocks away...and one was arrested for attempted deviate acts and attempted what do I do with this information that I wanted so bad (that is still incomplete)?

I am a FULL supporter of this law and of all measures to keep our children safe. I abhor groups that have fought (and continue to fight) these laws (Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance and -of course -the ACLU), but thankfully the Supreme Court decided to uphold this law across the board. I am confident it was this Supreme Court decision that allowed PA to reinstate components of Megan's Law and made the database open to the public --though I think we are still the only state with no addresses for the offenders available.

Dear GLAA and ACLU --When you rape a have NO civil have violated the most basic tenet of CIVILIZED society....and you deserve nothing...

Check the registry in YOUR STATE HERE.

In the Sandbox...

Honoring the 30 Marines, the sailor and the six soldiers that lost gave their lives in Iraq yesterday.
I wish I could list them all by name...

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

'My Mom of the Year' Award?!

What ALa did today...

The Snowman

"Nothing you do for children is ever wasted. They seem not to notice us, hovering, averting our eyes, and they seldom offer thanks, but what we do for them is never wasted."
-Garrison Keillor

Iraqi Election...

This will not be the hard-core look at the Iraqi Election that the ever-awesome Kat has posted on her site...but more of a question --or a few of them.

My question is this... If the impending Iraqi election is bogus (as the left is saying) --and we are only going to install a puppet regime...Why are the terrorists fighting so hard against it? Why did Zarqawi declare 'war against democracy'? Why do they feel it necessary to fight so hard against elections that have no meaning?

"We have declared a bitter war against the principle of democracy and all those who seek to enact it."
--Abu Musab al-Zarqawi

My second question is this...Why is the world not rallying to make sure Democracy happens -- the way they rallied to Tsunami relief? Are these 25 million people less important? Have they not been through unspeakable horrors for the last 35 years?

And finally, my third question...Is the hate for the President so strong that it would overpower the desire to ensure freedom for the Iraqis? Is the left so set on seeing a Bush-Iraq failure that they would sacrifice 25 million people? Are France, Germany and Russia so ruffled at being ignored that they would not seek to ensure stability in a country that sits in their own backyard and an ideology that threatens them as well?

Despite the escalated terrorism the latest Iraqi poll showed that 90% of Iraqis are still planning to vote! This is a people that can taste freedom...and want it!

I read an article yesterday, in the normally US-bashing UK paper 'The Guardian', and was pleasantly surprised at the lucidity of the author -William Shawcross.

"Just look at who is trying to stop Iraqis voting and by what methods. That alone shows how important this week's elections are to Iraq....

The horrific war against the Iraqi people is being run by the same people who oppressed and tortured them for decades - Saddam's henchmen and gaolers. They are more than ably abetted by the Islamofascist jihadists led by Osama bin Laden's Heydrich in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi....

Blair is absolutely right. It is shocking that so few democratic governments support the Iraqi people. Where are French and German and Spanish protests against the terror being inflicted on voters in Iraq? And it is shocking that around the world there is not wider admiration of, assistance to and moral support (and more) for the Iraqi people. The choice is clear: movement towards democracy in Iraq or a new nihilism akin to fascism - Islamist fascism...." (source)

I don't see Brad Pitt and Julia Roberts having telethons to ensure the freedom of 25 million people. I don't see other countries sending troops to ensure a smooth election.
...What I do see is the Iraqi people becoming a talking point -a statistic -and political pull toy. They seem to have been lost in the political shuffle and people need to put their partisan differences aside -there approval or disapproval of the war... And honestly hope for a chance at self-governance for a people that have known nothing but intimidation and the rule of despotism...

In the Sandbox...

Soldier and his Beer

"Public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment nothing can fail.
Without it nothing can succeed. He who molds opinion is greater than he who enacts laws."
- President Abraham Lincoln

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Let the Poor Girl Go...

Sorry, I have to break with the party line once more…

When The Man and I first got married, we were watching an episode of Law & Order (one of our favorite shows)...I forget the exact plot line, but it had to do with living wills. "Never let me live like that!" I said to him and he demanded the same of me. This was nothing I felt I needed to discuss with my mom, dad or siblings...I had told my husband. Shortly after this the Terry Shiavo case began to get media coverage (her husband first asked for the feeding tube to be removed in 1998). His story struck a nerve with The Man and I because he described his conversation with his wife in an almost identical manner to ours...watching a TV show that made the conversation relevant and her telling him she would never want to live like that...who would?!

Both Glen Beck and Jeb Bush became very involved (wrongly in my opinion) in this case. Jeb Bush instigated a court order that mandated Terry's feeding tube be re-inserted (Terry's Law)--a decision that was subsequently overturned and taken before FL Supreme Court. The Florida Supreme Court decided yesterday that they would not hear the case (source). There is controversy over whether the husband is looking to get insurance money (which he said was used up long ago) or if the parents had never even visited Terry for years prior to the media attention...but all that aside --she has been gone a long time. They need to let her go. It is wrong for the courts to get involved in a marital pact -aka a living will. He is her husband and when she married him, he became the person responsible for legal decisions regarding her...not her parents. Look what she has become --what pictures people see on the news... Somehow the Shiavo's case has been lumped in with the Pro-life movement(?)... This was Terry's stated wish --and the majority of doctor's agree that she has been brain dead for years. Keeping someone's lungs moving does not constitute life.

I say 'right decision' to Florida's Supreme Court and 'stop letting emotion overtake common sense and cause you to overstep your bounds' to Governor Bush.

Rest In Peace deserve it after all these years...

In the Interest of Presenting the Facts...

With apparent glee some on the left have reported a story claiming that James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, is involved in a crusade against SpongeBob Squarepants --claiming that he is gay...

Though a great story...this is not true. This was debunked, not by Dr. Dobson, but by Nile Rogers -producer/songwriter -and the very man whose video is at the heart of this 'controversy'. Last night on 'The O'Reilly Factor' Rogers set the record straight and the story was a bit different than that reported by the BBC and the version put forth on Saturday Night Live and by the MSM...

Nile Rogers started the We Are Family Foundation, which is distributing a video to schools with many Muppets and cartoon characters singing 'We Are Family". The message is one of tolerance and diversity. A radio station in Florida mistakenly went to which is in fact a gay and lesbian organization. Dr. James Dobson never declared Spongebob gay. A researcher from FOTF picked up on this radio station's mistake and attributed the Nile Roger's video to this homosexual organization with virtually the same name.

Nile Rogers said that his video has nothing to do with sexual orientation and is only meant for kids to see that 'we are all family' and they should be nice to the kid in their class who may like different from them. There was never an accusation that SpongeBob was homosexual.

The Democratic Underground, once again proving they can't research something before they print it, also featuring this story on their website...

Just to set the record straight...

* Bringing Up Boys By Dr. James Dobson (an excellent book).

In the Sandbox...

Perfect features...

"...I'm a soldier
These shoulders hold up so much
They wont budge, I'll never fall or fold up
I'm a soldier
Even if my collar bones crush or crumble
I will never slip or stumble
I'm a soldier
These shoulders hold up so much
They wont budge, I'll never fall or fold up
I'm a soldier
Even if my collar bones crush or crumble
I will never stumble..."

Monday, January 24, 2005

The Hamburg Cell (Caution -NOT a PC Post)

(This is my raw un-censored reaction after watching the first film made about pre-9/11 events...)
Snowed in this weekend, The Man and I decided to watch The Hamburg Cell --which is playing on HBO. The Man had watched it once already and I was unsure if I was ready to see it...less than 3 1/2 years after that dreadful day...

In 1998, a few months after Justice was born, The Man and I watched Path to Paradise --a movie depicting the first World Trade Center bombing (I subsequentely gave my copy to Sean Hannity the first time I met him). It was virtually unbearable. The final scene shows...well, I won't tell you. You should see it. Put it this way, in light of 9/11 (which didn't happen until four years after this movie was made) --the final scene is downright eerie...

After seeing both movies, it is hard to be sympathetic to any Muslim (not to mention the overwhelming desire to incarcerate everyone that works for the airlines). I know that sounds terrible, but I would be lying if I didn't say that was the feeling that I came away with. Don't think the movie was made by hawks looking to comdemn Muslims though --it wasn't. At times it actually paints a sympathetic view of Ziad Jarrah (the 'pilot' of AA flight 93 and the main focus of the movie). Mohammad Atta was creepy...

Both movies (based on the facts that are available) completely debunk the liberal mantra that "Poverty breeds terrorism"... Rich kids... The whole lot of the highjackers. Rich boys from affluent, prominent families. The recriuting methods are chilling because of their seeming inocence. The simple fact that Mohammad Atta (along with a few of the other 9/11 highjackers) where training in Afghanistan with Ayman al-Zawahiri in 1998 --while The Man and I were watching that first movie!!!!!

The other feeling that I got while watching it...If one more of my Jewish friends shows empathy for the plight of the 'mis-treated Mulims'...or even the Palastinians-- around me I am going to throw up. Do you think they don't HATE you...? Do you think they don't want you DEAD at ANY cost? Do you think that they don't hate you more than they hate me? -- Do you think they care if you are sympathetic to their cause...? Do they not view you as a ZIONIST and if you live they are kafir...? Yeah, yeah...maybe not all of them would actually kill you...but do you have any doubt that they feel this way deep down? Are we not the infidels -the crusaders -the Zionists...?

We didn't take the WTC bombing in 1993 seriously and the planning was immediately underway for September 11th. We NEED to get serious. We NEED to declare war. The plans for 9/11 were dramatically scaled down from what they were supposed to be because of trouble obtaining US visas...but with the ACLU working hard we may not be as lucky next time.

Watch these movies and see what we are up against. Look into the heart of those that would behead you and your children. Look at how they see their mission as Godly and sanctioned --nessesary. How do we fight that?!

The Hamburg Cell: Edinburg Film Festival Review, UK Review

In the Sandbox...

Big Gun!

"War can only be abolished by war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is
necessary to take up the gun"
- Mao Zedong (Tse-tung)

Sunday, January 23, 2005

PHILLY En Route to Jacksonville!

Aunt Bitchy made me promise to do a post when the Eagles rub it in to Jericho Brown....
My observations:
When did they get the mufflers on a 'fanny-pack' belt? I think I had a fur one for Easter when I was five...
Atlanta's Michael Vick has no biceps...?
Is Andy Reid on an all-Twinkie diet?
There was someone in the crowd with green Eagles contact lenses...ten to one he's from Mayfair or Lawndale...
The Eagles haven't been to the Super Bowl (VS. Oakland Raiders) since I was nine...
Why did I give birth to two boys...????????????????????????

What ALa is Doing Today...

First Philly Snow

2LT Eivind O. Forseth, Airborne Ranger

Meet 2LT Eivind O. Forseth, Airborne Ranger in the 82nd out of Fort Bragg. He was seriously wounded in Iraq, and is now at Walter Reed.

"His flashbacks to the attack are lessening, and he is being encouraged to talk about it as much as he can; one problem is that he never lost consciousness and can remember every sound and sight. He remembers carrying his arm while the medic was yelling "Get out of the kill zone, get out of the kill zone!" and speeding off to the field hospital."
2LT Eivind O. Forseth
19 January: From LT Forseth's Mother:
Surgery yesterday was 8 hours long; only a "fake" bone, plates and screws on the right arm. He still has open flesh wounds and unattached nerves covered by surgical sponges and wrappings with a wound vac to drain them.

Today was a nerve block to manage pain. Friday is a surgical wash to prevent infection in the bone. Next week, barring infection, will be possible nerve grafts, and skins grafts, possibly surgically attaching his arm to his rib cage for two weeks while tissue grows. They are looking at moving tendons and some other tissues to allow functions in the right hand.

His spirits were good until he got a high fever tonight, and they are testing for infections and pneumonia. That will dictate all further progress. The arm is still at risk.

His command came from Fort Bragg and presented him with his purple heart today, and Donald Rumsfeld gave him a coin.

His veins keep collapsing making blood draws and fluid intake very difficult, so docs are looking at putting in a pic line. He has edema now in his right leg and an ulcer on his foot. But we realize that there are going to be many peaks and valleys. So, every day is a new day.

Once again, it is still too early for visitors and phone calls; the daily procedures and pain completely exhaust him. Thanks to everyone for thinking of him.
~Judith Forseth

Cards may be sent to his address at Walter Reed.
2LT Eivind O. Forseth Ward 57
Walter Reed Army Medical Center
6900 Georgia Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20307

*Thanks to AFSister for the info on LT. Forseth. Maybe as we are all buying cards for our significant others this Valentines Day we can pick up a few extra for our injured soldiers at Walter Reed. Lt. Forseth is just one example...
Any Soldier has lists of email addresses, and Keystone Soldiers also has 'Make a Soldier your Valentine'....

In the Sandbox...

Those Eyes!

"War is an a"War is an art
"War is an art and as such is not susceptible of explanation by fixed formula."
- General George Patton Jr

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Washington's Supreme Court of Injustice...

Washington will be retrying hundreds of "felony murder" cases due to a (state) Supreme Court ruling that found that it was unconstitutional to convict for murder when murder was not intended. "A state Supreme Court ruling in November cleared the way for roughly 300 prisoners to get their second-degree "felony murder" convictions thrown out. It was the latest fallout from the court's earlier decision that the crime of assault, unlike other felonies, cannot be the basis for a murder charge in an unintended death." (source) I know that many of you out there are lawyers and most lawyers love the American legal system, but Damn!
Almost all of these cases involve the brutal beatings and deaths of children. The reasoning of the court? "They say it's often impossible to prove an intent to kill -- which can be the difference between murder and less-severe manslaughter charges -- when someone impulsively beats or violently shakes a small child." (source) Sentences are being overturned and knocked down to assault or manslaughter -which carries a ten year sentence. In King's County alone, the Supreme Court rulings could mean new trials and lessened sentences for as many as 10 people who violently killed toddlers or infants. Opponents of this ruling claim some of the most ruthless criminals are being released back to the population.

"Prosecutors say that among the hundreds of "felony murder" cases they face retrying in the wake of several recent state Supreme Court rulings, the people who killed very young children are proving to be among the most difficult to keep behind bars."

Eleven child-killers have already been set free and hundreds wait in the wings.

Some examples:
David Crane was convicted and serving a 60 year sentence for burning, shaking and beating to death his three-year-old nephew. As he has already served the maximum sentence allowed for manslaughter (less than 1/3 of his sentence), he walked free yesterday. (source)
Noreen Erlandson went free last month (convicted for 40 years) after being convicted for beating to death her 2 yr. old daughter. (source)
Chayce Hanson kicked his girlfriend's 2 year old down a flight of stairs in 2000. Now instead of murder he will be facing manslaughter and child assault (but most likely only one of those charges). "When a grown man kicks a 2 1/2-year-old again and again, how can a reasonable person think that's anything other than an intent to kill?" asked Sharon Kirkpatrick, the toddler's grandmother."(source)

Once again I find my self sickened and disheartened with our legal system. I don't know what else to say...

In the Sandbox...

Still cute in a sandstorm...

"I know some soldiers in here (where they at, where they at)
They wanna take care of me (where they at)
I know some soldiers in here (where they at, where they at)
Wouldn't mind takin' one for me (where they at)
I know some soldiers in here (where they at, where they at)
They wanna spend that on me (where they at)
I know some soldiers in here (where they at, where they at)
Wouldn't mind puttin' that on me (where they at)"

Destiny's Child- 'Soldier'

Friday, January 21, 2005

Next Stop, Iran....?

In The President's Inaugural address there were some 'not so veiled' references to the fact that our so-called allies in the Middle East must do more in their own backyards to promote peace and freedom and human rights. He also said that he was committed to "the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world." Like Bush or hate him, I am sure the world community now knows that he does what he says. Unlike the UN with empty resolutions and hollow threats, GWB will take action even if it bucks 'world opinion'. That is why some of you hate him, but that is also why some of us love him. Appease the bully in the playground and he will steal your lunch money each and every day. Knock him out once and he will think twice about bothering you again.

Following the President's address to the nation, Dick Cheney said yesterday (on Imus' morning show) that Iran was "right at the top" of the world's trouble spots. He went on to say that the US may not be able to stop Israel from taking on Tehran and destroying their nuclear program. Iran has a 'state policy' that includes the destruction of Israel...

“There’s a rhetorical escalation here: They’ve ratcheted up the threat level by bringing Israel in,” said Henri J. Barkey, a former State Department official during the Clinton administration. “They’re using the fact of the inauguration, and the uncertainty people have about where they’re going in the next term, to say, ‘Look, we’re not going to let up on Iran.’” (source)

Though Cheney is saying "diplomacy is the best way for the time being", his message was clear. In response to Cheney's remarks, "President Mohammad Khatami said Tehran was fully prepared to defend itself but it did not expect the US, already overstretched in Iraq, to mount an offensive." (source)

"Mr. Cheney's remarks came at what appears to be a critical moment in the administration's internal debate over how to deal with Iran. For more than a year the C.I.A. and other intelligence agencies have been intently focused on identifying Iranian nuclear facilities. Some of that information has been shared with the International Atomic Energy Agency to guide its inspections." (source)

Someone on the left recently said to me that if Bush attempts to use military action against Iran --he will have mass riots on his hands. I have always assumed that Iran was the next stop...

In the Sandbox...

A Soldier and his Lizzard

"Natural hazards, however formidable, are inherently less dangerous and less uncertain than fighting hazards. All conditions are more calculable, all obstacles more surmountable than those of human resistance."
- Sir Basil H. Liddel-Hart

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Inauguration Red Carpet...

So I would rather watch an Inauguration, a State of the Union or President Reagan's funeral than the Oscars... and I guess that makes me a geek. But I LOVE the Pomp & Circumstance. The precision, the military bands and flag bearers, the 21 gun salute... I love the flag waving in the wind. I love what it represents.
As I was watching today, I noticed a glaring absence in the ceremony --Joan & Melissa Rivers... Have no fear; I am here to give you the run down.

-President Clinton looked good -the best that I have seen him look since his surgery and he was sporting a Cashmere Burberry scarf (same one I have).
-Condi looked great in a black fur beret and matching fur trimmed coat (There was an amazing amount of fur -I guess PETA was kept at bay with the other protestors)
-Girls after my own heart choosing fashion over comfort...were Jenna Bush, Lynne Cheney and Laura Bush. None wore coats as not to obscure their wonderful suits.
-Other twin Barbara had a wonderful baby blue Jackie O style coat with a pair of the best black high-boots I have seen.
-Jeb Bush was taking pictures with a disposable (?) camera...Go figure.
-Barbara Bush (senior) was the fashion disappointment of the day. Baby blue suit pants, navy blue jacket with a bright red scarf draped over her shoulders. Your son is only the 16th President in history to be reelected...dress like you're proud...
-I am sure my mom will be upset that Bush wore a light blue tie instead of a red 'power-tie'.
-Orin Hatch actually wrote the first song that was sung at the ceremony.
-Amongst the sea of dead animal pelts -there were also more cowboy hats that I have ever seen in one gathering...

On a far less shallow note and switching from the Rivers two to Brit Hume mode -some things that stood out for me from Bushie's speech:

-"I am mindful of the consequential times in which we live."
-"Defined not by words I speak, but history we have witnessed together."
-"Then there was a Day of Fire. We have seen our vulnerability and seen its deepest source."
-"No one is fit to be a master and no one deserves to be a slave."
-"Ultimate goal -Ending tyranny in the world."
-"The best hope for peace in our world is the expansion of hope and freedom in all of the world."
-"Oppression is always wrong -and freedom always morally right."
-"To the youngest citizens among us -believe the evidence of your eyes."

CONGRATULATIONS to President Bush for being in the elite club of sixteen Presidents in the history of this US of A to be reelected to serve a second term. And congratulations to him for increasing GOP seats in the Congress and among the ranks of Governors across the country.


Ms_Liberty's Logic

This excerpt was taken from the comments section on JB's Cruel World... It involves the infamous Ms_Liberty, Aunt Bitchy, JB and of course ME (or I wouldn't be reprinting it...)
This conversation is in response to the 19 year old Modesto, CA Marine that shot two police officers, saying that he would "rather die than go back to Iraq":

Ms_Liberty : Andres Raya, another dead because of Bush.
I wonder if chimpy knows, that the blood on his hands will keep him from ever meeting Jeebus!

Aunt Bitchy : I read this story and really do not know how you might attribute his death to Bush...ok...HE WAS A LOON! (water in Modesto must be tainted)
...whether it was the war or not...why did he not just put a gun to his own head or down his throat...why involve the surrounding neighbors, store clerk and police...

I am sorry but he signed that dotted line to Join the "all volunteer army" ...that means under all circumstances whether you agree or not...why are people suddenly unaccountable for their own actions??? Blame him...he held the pen.

...he might have not wanted to go back and that is understandable,
but to blame his behavior on Bush is really ridiculous. So ridiculous I almost did not even respond.

Ms_Liberty : Aunt Bitchy, the U.S. wouldn't be in Iraq if it weren't for Bush, so this guy killing himself because he didn't want to go back to Iraq is indeed the smirky chimp's fault!

Aunt Bitchy : Of course it is not his fault for joining the army which would in turn take you to war...nah, that would be logical.

Ms_Liberty : So aunt bitchy, you think that having an army means you have to make war? (I'm trying to understand this stupid-ass, callous position.)

Ala: These boys obviously know that there is a VERY good possibility they will be deployed if they join the military... Disturbed people join the military too... Talk to a Vietnam vet -they'll tell you...
He disgraces the soldiers that leave Walter Reed and go back after serious injuries because of their duty and obligation to their 'brothers'...

Ms_Liberty: Interesting that the right-wingers themselves bring up Vietnam. lol Remind us all how necessary that war was again? hmmm...
Dying for a worthless cause like looting a country for oil is what disgraces the troops!

Ala: Uh...check your history books was a DEMOCRAT that took us into Vietnam and a REPUBLICAN that got us out...
If the war was about oil we'd be in Sudan too...don't ya think?

Did you oppose Clinton's 'war' in would be a bit hypocritical if you didn't as Saddam killed WAY more people than Milosevic did... I didn't oppose that war, by the way -I want to help people in need regardless of what party is in power...

Jericho Brown : Nice try, ALa. We didn't use human rights violations as an excuse for this war until after it became clear we weren't going to find any WMDs. The time to strike Saddam for genocide against the Kurds would have been when Bush I was in office. He, of course, did nothing.

Ala: I will repeat myself yet again...In Bush's SOTU he gave the American people FIVE reasons we were going to war with Iraq...WMD was ONE of those reasons...The most important reason? Yes, of course...but Clinton, MI6, The UN, France, Germany and Russia said they were there too.
If we would have done nothing and New York was hit with something, the liberals would have been the first to scream foul play --to say that Bush hadn't acted against Saddam even after 9/11 and all the other countries told them about the weapons...Ugh, this is SO tiresome...

Ms_Liberty : ALa, What the fuck are you rambling on about?! You never seem to respond directly to anything.
Again, remind me why Bush was right to attack Iraq!!! Where were the WMD????
Here you go, ALa. Read the resolution, then try and defend the dirty little chimp!
- To truly understand the level of deception and sleaze used in taking America to war, I believe everyone should read Congress's resolution first. Public Law 107-243
(Notice the twenty-three conditions to war contained within)

Then read the Presidential Determination in which Bush merely spits back the "whereas" statements from the original resolution as if there was any evidence supporting him!

Ala: Clinton went to Bosnia without going to the UN or to Congress...
I addressed the points directly...It's not my fault if you have no reading comprehension...

Ms_Liberty : President Clinton led NATO diplomatic and military efforts to end the war, install peacekeepers and establish rules for governing a democratic Bosnia after the loss of 250,000 lives and the exodus of 2.5 million refugees. The peace brokered in Dayton has been sustained, a civil society complete with active opposition parties and non-governmental organizations has taken root, and national and local elections have taken place throughout the country.
Face it, ALa (and other neo-cons). Clinton was a success; your guy's a complete failure!
Bush is the idiot son, who rules like a blind bull stomping around a china shop.

Ala: Success?! The woman I sponsor in Bosnia fled from her home TEN years ago and has STILL not been able to return...
I was going to write you a translation of one of her letters here describing the "Success" of UN peace-keeping troops there and of NATO and how "safe" they all feel there...but I can't find it -Damn......I will keep looking...

Ms_Liberty : In the words of King - "We can no longer afford to worship the god of hate or bow before the altar of retaliation. The oceans of history are made turbulent by the ever-rising tides of hate. History is cluttered with the wreckage of nations and individuals that pursued this self-defeating path of hate”.

"A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death.''

Ala: You, the most combative and nasty person on the blogs to date...have no business qouting MLK...

Ms_Liberty : I don't have a right to quote a great civil rights leader? And why's that, ALa?
Martin Luther King Jr. belongs to all Americans who believe in social justice, sadly you can't count yourself in that category since you're a war sympathizer (and you even manage to white-wash the most disgusting war of all, the Vietnam war).

So if anyone hasn't a right to mention the Rev., it's you!

Ala: I didn't (bring up King), I just don’t think he would approve of your tactics Mumia...
You really can't read can you... About Vietnam I said:
"Disturbed people join the military too... Talk to a Vietnam vet -they'll tell you..."
" Uh...check your history books was a DEMOCRAT that took us into Vietnam and a REPUBLICAN that got us out..."
Please explain in 50 words or less how this was 'whitewashing a war'...did I even talk about the war itself...uh, the answer to that would be a resounding NO...
If you need it S-P-E-L-L-E-D out for you (which you obviously do) I was referring to when the US Government dropped standards when they needed to pull more people into the draft (that would be when Muhammad Ali actually scored high enough to be drafted)...It was called McNamara's 1000 (the lowering of physical and mental standards)...
...Many of the veterans believe that many of those that came home with serious mental problems had in fact gone in with those problems. I was writing this in response to the article about the 'soldier'...making the illustration that just because one is serving does not mean one is free and clear of mental deficiencies...
Did I write S-L-O-W enough for you?

Ms_Liberty : Many of the veterans believe that many of those that came home with serious mental problems had in fact gone in with those problems.

What a bunch of bullshit propaganda!!! Vietnam fucked those vets up. Just like this crack-ass conflict is doing to a whole new generation.

Besides the blood bathed violence, there's depleted uranium causing damage and weird milaria meds that soldiers are being forced to take.

(During Vietnam soldiers were damaged by similar circumstances for example, Agent Orange.)

Btw ALa, since Martin Luther King Jr. was a true progressive who believed in social justice/programs and was anti-war, I'm sure he'd approve quite readily of passionate dissent during this time of great tragedy and back-sliding in the U.S. I

It is you who is completely out of touch with the ideals of MLK. I can't imagine you ever considering civil disobedience, you mindless goose-stepping twit!

Ala: "goose-stepping"... Ok, I would've bet you were like 22 from your writing, but that 'term' leads me to think you may be in your sixties...aren't you the mystery girl...

Look up MacNamara's 1000 -1967/1968...lowered mental standards to be drafted (you may have even been eligible)...It's a historical fact...(I know you guys hate those pesky things)

My father served in Vietnam -I think he knows about it a little more than you learned from NPR's ‘Wars Revisited’...

MLK/Gandhi were fighting a governments not terrorists...pacifists and hawks alike will be beheaded...I would actually love to hear what MLK had to say about Al Qaeda... I respect MLK -even if he was a philanderer...

Ms_Liberty : And of course, here comes the back-handed Republican compliment to King, with a mention of his affairs. You people are so obsessed with sex, yet have little problem with violence.

ALa seeing how your dad served during Vietnam, you should know better!
(Then again, if he was actually in Vietnam rather than Germany you might be better informed.)
...combative.... -
Ahhh, we finally got to what you dislike most about me, I won't back down or give up like most liberals. The problem is I don't get anywhere with you either. I only bother because I can't stand the last word being a Repug regurgitated lie, sometimes the truth has to win...*clinging to that hope*

Ala: Mumia -Actually (once again) you are wrong...the ONLY thing I like about you is your pit bullishness... I respect your combative nature (even though it's wrought with wrong-headedness and vitriol)...what I was saying was that KING wouldn't like it. YOU wouldn't like MLK either though. Have you ever actually read 'Letter from Birmingham Jail'? It is ensconced in God and Christianity as much as it is in civil rights and disobedience... And you have made it quite clear on more than one occasion your disdain for people of faith.

MLK's affairs are pretty public was not even a Republican, but a DEMOCRAT favorite -JFK, who taped him in the act... Priceless...

I know plenty about my father was in the jungles outside of Saigon...and is not one of the ones who went in mentally disturbed, so has no problem talking about it...The war was waged poorly (of course -a Democrat was running it) and it was fought politically and not to win -most likely because of all pressure from the freaks back here that the Dems can't ever stand up too...I blame your ilk for the sheer casualties there...

Ms_Liberty : Ala, Vietnam was unwinnable but most importantly unjust and unnecessary! I can't believe that's even up for debate. No wonder you think this Iraq invasion makes sense.

Btw, how can you blame me for the casualities??? If it was up to me, we wouldn't have attacked Iraq unprovoked like Bush has.

And it wasn't JFK who taped him but rather J.Edgar Hoover! Duh!

Ala: JFK had him followed and taped...(you're right, he wasn't holding the camera himself...)

I don't think any war is just if you're not fighting to win (and better lives/stop evil)...then it's just a senseless loss of lives. If this war begins to look like it's not being fought to win --I will not support it anymore...

Ms_Liberty : So Ala, do you think we're fighting in Iraq to win something?
What exactly is the prize?

ALa: The prize is democracy in Afghanistan and Iraq...look at a map honey -that means Iran is now surrounded by American-friendly governments (the real reason for the war in my opinion). The prize is the end to beheading by radical Islam...HOPEFULLY the prize is the fact that once Democracy takes foot people living in third world 4th century squalor can see that there is another way besides hate and death and throwing candy when the Twin Towers come down...the PRIZE is what you liberals always claim you want (but don't yet realize that we have ALWAYS had to fight to get) ...some semblance of PEACE...

In the Sandbox...

Blonde Marine

The best armor is staying out of gun-shot.
-Italian proverb

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

For 92ALPHA & Aunt Bitchy...

John Elway, after living a full life, died. When he got to heaven, God was
showing him around. They came to a modest little house with a faded Broncos
flag in the window.

"This house is yours for eternity, John," said God. "This is very special; not everyone gets a house up here."

John felt special, indeed, and walked up to his house. On his way up the porch, he
noticed another house just around the corner. It was a 3-story mansion with
a Green & White & Silver sidewalk, a 50 foot tall flagpole with an enormous
EAGLES logo flag, and in every window, an Eagles emblem.

John looked at God and said "God, I'm not trying to be ungrateful, but I
have a question. I was an all-pro QB, I won 2 Super Bowls, and I even went
to the Hall of Fame."
God said "So what's your point John?"
"Well, why does Donovan McNabb get a better house than me?" God chuckled, and said "John,that's not Donovan's house... it's mine."

Go Eagles!!

Random January Thoughts...

I re-entered academia last night. I haven't been in school since 2002, so I missed out on the pre-election Kerry love fest. Is it my pre-conceived notions or is that left-love still palpable on the campus?
Upon entering the Education building...the first thing I see? Two bulletin boards covered with Pre-election pro-John Kerry articles...uh, kids... the election was over two months ago...and, he lost by the way. Two people in my class were wearing those new Lance Armstrong rip-off bracelets...the ones denouncing Bush... The girl next to me in full Wiccan attire, pentagram on her index finger and damn did she smell... The teacher beginning the class with a pronouncement that he had created the best scientific teaching model in PA history...until the fundamentalists in Congress overturned it because they believe in Creation. My first night back people. I felt like standing up and screaming..."It was ME...I voted for Bush...I am the Conservative!"...just to get it over with...

Did Condi rock yesterday or what?! Smack down to Barbara Boxer...Smack down SENATOR Kerry... Damn she's impressive. So knowledgeable. So precise. Such a great orator. Impossible to truly ruffle. Impossible to bait. I felt PROUD to be a woman watching her yesterday. Damn proud.

On a much more BIZARRE note...My friend Jeff WON the Dunkin Donuts contest! Jesus he really has to get married in a doughnut shop in the NEXT MONTH!!!! He thanks you all for your help... (This win isn't wasn't common knowledge I hope the couples that lost don't stumble across this somehow...)

There is a new JibJab movie that is pretty funny...Watch the Movie "Second Term"...

In the Sandbox...

Cute in a Jumpsuit

"Today we confront the future with optimism from a founded hope for the Iraqi people- in freedom,"
- Former Spanish President Jose Maria Aznar

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

The Left - Some Things I Don't Like...

1) The real (or perceived) hatred of God and Christianity...and more important, the disdain for those who choose to believe in a higher power. The unabashed campaign against any symbol of Christianity while other religious symbols remain unscathed...

2) The prevalent belief (or worse -talking point) that the right doesn't care about the poor, the homeless and education. Get over yourselves...we all want the same things we just disagree on the best way to get there.

3) A penchant for dramatics...everything on the left is always in extremes. The war was for oil...a grand scheme. Rummy said rape young Iraqis at Abu Gharib...a conspiracy to the top. Puh-leeease... Grow up. On January 20th the loons will be out in force protesting the Inauguration. PLEASE explain the point of this to me...even if the ENTIRE country showed up to protest -this man would still be the President for the next four years. Do these people have jobs?

4) The commandeering of minorities. Once again, get over yourself... I know Republicans of all shapes, sizes and colors. Being a conservative does not make you a racist -and it's ignorant to even imply this is the case.

5) General slovenliness. Lack of makeup, razors, perfume, cologne, hair products and the alarming presence of handmade purses, swirling colors, smelly incense, patchouli oil, baggy clothes and Birkenstocks...(I don't care how cute you think your feet are...NO ONE looks good in Birkenstocks...)

These are some things that bother me about the people (not the platform) of the left. Feel free to add to/or dispute the list...

In the Sandbox...

Sad Soldier

"We promise that the events of 1991 will not happen again - we have pledged to remove Saddam and we will deliver"
- Tony Blair's letter to the Iraqis (4 April)

Monday, January 17, 2005

Legalize Pot...?

A Glimpse into The House of Sage:
The Man thinks that I am crazy because I think pot should be legalized... he is seriously annoyed that I think that way... Let me preface this by saying that neither The Man nor I smoke pot (yes, we have in the past, and probably even inhaled; but neither of us like it or have done it in years...)

I think that cigarettes and alcohol are worse [than pot] as they are both physically addicting and pot is psychologically addicting...and they are both legal. I think that TONS of people smoke it even though it isn't legal now and drug dealers are getting rich when we could probably finance the 'War on Terror' with tax revenue from legalizing marijuana. We could also create TONS of jobs. Prisons house people arrested for having MINIMAL amounts of pot (under some states zero-tolerance laws) and tax payer money is wasted on housing non-violent two-joint having 'criminals'.

The Man:
I smoke a lot of cigarettes, I drink a decent amount of beer and wine, but I am aware that both of these drugs are a problem.... I don't think I need to go into that further. I use hemp products at least twice a week as pipe sealant and I've also used hemp paper products; dust collectors and vacuum bags. The need for hemp is very logical. The need for pharmaceutical THC is also logical. The need for another mind altering drug available legally is not logical. So really ALa, what is the difference between pot and coke aside from the addictive quality? You say "people can drive on pot", well, I was quite able to drive on coke.... as a matter of fact, coke was sometimes the only reason I could drive depending on what I was taking the night before...So why not legalize coke? Think of the jobs it would create, think of all the dealers off the streets and the prisoners out of the system...(sarcasm font). We have enough problems with DUI's and irresponsible behavior from drinking - Why add pot?

Many people do believe in legalizing all drugs. I am not one of them. Coke, Heroin etc. are extremely addictive and the tax revenue created by legalizing them would be eaten up in Emergency Room visits, accidents, and treatment centers... Pot is a pretty mild drug...and it would be regulated, so it's not like you'd be getting Amsterdam quality bio-superskunk... or if you were we could do it like they do and de-criminalize it and you would have to buy it and smoke it in a 'cafe'...(ALa at 'High Times' in Amsterdam)

The Man:
Cafes? Like BARS? What accidents will come of coke? Who says you wouldn't be able to get stronger pot? I can get stronger Vodkas and Rums.... I can buy stronger smokes.... You point sucks. I know it's quite easy to get pot, but not nearly as easy as it would be going to a local convenience store and buying a pack of 'Stoner Joes'... So it's obvious it would be ABUSED, like drinking is - Why create another problem?

I am an adult and I should be able to choose what I do and don't do --especially when it is something that doesn't harm anyone but myself (but no more harm than the two that are already legal...nicotine & alcohol). Listen, I am not a 'legalize pot' advocate... I don't smoke it, so I really could care less. I am just using common sense here to say if almost everyone I know smokes it regardless of the 'law' then we could be paying down the deficit with that money instead of enabling dealers to put spinning rims on their cars...

The Man:
Look, you want to knock down the deficit, don't add more drugs to mix... try taking out some of the silly social programs available and maybe kill some of the killers in prison, stop supporting junkies and maybe that will put some dough in the bank. This is ridiculous... *leaves computer annoyed*

This was the conversation in our house last night after reading TWD's post and JP's Post on legalizing pot... We should have been watching a movie, but NO...we were fighting about something neither of us even partake in. The Man and I rarely disagree (unless it's about Metallica's validity or the fact that I think he is too civil to his non-paying customers) and it looks like this will have to remain one of the rare instances that we don't agree... I'm sure those of you that are versed in the benefits/evils of marijuana can present better arguments...but this is where we decided to leave it (because he was getting pissed...)

In the Sandbox...

This boy is in Mosul right now, and speaking of Mosul...did you all see that CBFTW posted again and says to 'stay tuned'...
...doesn't this soldier look like Eminem in '8 Mile'?

Bam or Eminem Soldier...

"Regard your soldiers as your children, and they will follow you into the deepest valleys. Look on them as your own beloved sons, and they will stand by you even unto death!"
- Sun Tzu

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Keystone Soldiers -of Lou Dobbs fame...

Keystone Soldiers has a program that is similar to Operation Shoe Fly, but the donated shoes go to IRAQ and OSF's go to Afghanistan. I know after the holidays many of you are making room for all the Christmas booty and instead of throwing out all those kid's shoes that don't fit ...put them in a box and ship them over to Keystone!
Keystone Soldiers, PO Box 152 Fleetwood, Pa 19522.

In Iraq, 1st Lt. Sloan has been handing out the shoes and below is a letter written by him that Keystone has posted on their page:

"Thanks for the links. I was quite surprised to see the article. I must admit I am not used to this type of publicity. I just wanted to help some people out and it seems to have grown quite considerably.

At this point my count has exceeded 1000 shoes received and of that number, I have approx. 200 pairs waiting to be handed out. I am attempting to find a more streamlined method of distributing the shoes. At this point our methods are still somewhat crude.

The last time I took one of my Gun Trucks out on another Unit's convoy because they just happened to be going to a neighborhood friendly to the U.S. and was also very poor. Well we were able to hand out approx. 300 pairs of shoes there but began to get shot at, so we took that as our request to leave.

The hardest part of this process is handing out the shoes in such a way that the leader of each little village, or sheikh if you will, is the one who takes the credit for making this happen. It is their way of doing things. When I do this I have to coordinate with that leader and ask his permission. Even then I usually give the shoes to that person for him to distribute. It is a very difficult process to navigate but so long as the children and those in need get the shoes, it doesn't really matter who gets the credit! Thanks again for making this happen!"

If you don't have kids there are other ways to help the troops - Keystone also takes donations to send care packages and has posted details on how to
'Make a Soldier Your Valentine' HERE.

Email Keystone Soldiers
Browse Keystone's Info-packed site
*This poster can be purchased at Keystone's website and when you buy one-one will also be sent to a soldier's family..."Soldier's Plea"

Friday, January 14, 2005

In Honor of the 'South Park Republicans'...

Yes, I know you all know that I love Protien Wisdom... But I also know that some of you STILL don't read him... Bad children!

Nonplussed by the dis-invitation of Kid Rock to the inaugural party...Jeff penned this letter to the head of the 'Campaign for Children and Families'... I had to post it here because...well, because it's my blog and I think it's funny...and because I think Conservatives need to loosen up and laugh...

READ Jeff's Letter....
(This is what ALa71 kissing someone's ass looks like...)

ALSO...Blonde Sagacity was linked again today by The Daou Report for the "Sudan" Post...

Sudanese Oil & US Intervention...

"We’d already be in Sudan if they had oil"...a phrase that has often been bandied about by the left. Of course, the underlying sentiment of that statement is the never-ending accusation that we are only in Iraq for the oil --the left’s continued and convenient amnesia of the Oil for Food scandal… Yes, the war DID have to do with oil…only it was not US interest in it –but German, France and Russia’s desire to stay in Saddam’s well-paid loop while the Iraqi people suffered needlessly under sanctions that neither touched nor affected the regime. (A well paid scheme with an outcome that would have undermined sanctions and 'the box' that contained Saddam).

The left uses Sudan as an ongoing illustration to ‘prove’ their case that the Bush Administration cares nothing of genocide and human rights violations and that only the lust to control world oil motivates them…seeking to belittle the liberating of the Iraq people from a murdering despot.

But Alas! The Sudanese have oil! The Sudan Tribune reported in yesterday’s edition that Sudan’s oil production is currently around 320,000 barrels per day (bpd), and is expected to reach 500,000 bpd in 2005. "Estimates of reserves range from more than 560 million barrels to over one billion, but analysts say swathes of the country are unexplored so actual reserves could be much higher." (source)

So why aren’t we in Sudan? Maybe the Administration is a bit gun shy after being bitch-slapped by the American left and the rest of the world the last time they used troops to help someone. (Please recall those on the left protesting Clinton's decison to help in Bosnia also). They obviously know there is oil there and know that they second they proport a will to intervene —the tune will change from "We’d already be in Sudan if they had oil" to "We are only helping the Sudanese because they have oil"... or maybe they are waiting for the UN to redeem themselves and actually do the job they are paid handsomely for with US tax dollars.

If you want to read about a country where the US/UN has done nothing to help an invaded and occupied people…read about the last thirty years in Cyprus. How the Cypriots have been living under Turkish occupation(Muslim) –and crying out for the world to listen and no one has. This was one of the reasons why the EU was blocking Turkey’s admission. When President Bush went to plead Turkey’s case to the EU this past summer, it was more than a little disturbing... (History of Cyprus)

What I find unsettling is this...many in Europe and the Middle East (and the ACLU) are decrying the US for 'hating Muslims', but we went into Bosnia to help Muslims, Afghanistan and Iraq to liberate Muslims, more Tsunami relief than all Arab countries combined to help Muslims...yet in the two countries where Muslims are the aggressors (Sudan, Cyprus) --the US has done nothing...

In the Sandbox...

Aunt Bitchy's Favorite

"Soldiers usually win the battles and generals get the credit for them."
- Napoleon Bonaparte

Thursday, January 13, 2005

I'm Going Over to the Darkside With This One...

The Man is mad at me for doing this post. He thinks the video that I am about to direct you to was created by some 'tree hugging f'ing lib' and that posting this is just 'giving the libs ammunition'...

I received this video from Defiant Heart...After I watched it, I felt seriously nauseous for several days. The Man watched it and initially had the same reaction (before he decided it was a Vast Left Wing Conspiracy). Jericho and GirlGray watched it and seemed as befuddled as we were. I sent it to 91Ghost, but haven't heard his reaction yet...

I need feedback, reassurance, explanations...something. Don't let me fall into the realm of Fox Mulder and Michael Moore....

All five of us that watched it have our theories...but I don't want to go into all that here. I want you all to watch it the way we did...without a long preamble. It's a video about American Airlines Flight 77 that hit the Pentagon on September 11th...

Watch it and elaborate on your thoughts. I am especially anxious to hear from all the military boys and the veterans about this...

Watch the Video

Catch me I'm falling!!!!

Caught: Free's eyewitness account (in comments) & AFSis's Internet find...
UPDATE: Riceburner Has alerted me that I may have posted FRENCH propoganda...and that the video shows photoshopped about it at THIS SITE and see the REAL PICTURE of the Pentagon aftermath...

In the Sandbox...

Tall and Innocent

"To see the right and not to do it is cowardice."
- Confucius

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Is There Ever a Case For Torture?
"Moral High Ground" VS "Anything Goes"

ALa71 VS. Jericho Brown

ALa: Just so the readers (and I) know...are we beginning this 'discussion' on the premise that you believe that torture is never an acceptable method to be used against another human being?
Jericho: Depends what constitutes torture…
ALa: Not Abu Gharib 'torture' ...real torture...
Jericho: Like needles under fingernails, that kinda shit?
ALa: Yeah...full on torture...
Jericho: First off, I do not think the government should EVER sponsor that kind of treatment. I don't care if it's Hitler. Seriously. That's for the other inmates to do, and as far as I’m concerned, what went on at Abu Gharib is just as bad, if not worse because of what it did to our already-sagging image over there.
ALa: OK, let me start with making a distinction ...I am in no way advocating torture as a means of punishment - only torture as a means of extracting information...
Jericho: Fine.
ALa: What does 'fine' mean?
ALa: This is never going to work...
Jericho: Why not?
ALa: You're too flighty
Jericho: I’m totally invested in this, RIGHT NOW.
ALa: And two seconds from now?
Jericho: You have my complete attention
ALa: haha
Jericho: C’mon already!
ALa: Then answer my question boy!
Jericho: What does fine mean?
ALa: Yes, does fine mean you agree on my distinction or that you would use torture for information too? What do you believe?
Jericho: You mean, do I think torture should be used to extract info? If we are talking about needles under nails and electrical cords attached to balls, then no…"Stress positions", yes. "Messing up sleep cycles", yes.
ALa: What is the premise for saying 'no'... to the 'real' stuff?
Jericho: The premise is that the information gathered under extreme duress like that can not be considered reliable. I know if I had electricity surging through my nuts I'd tell the guy doing it whatever he wanted to hear. And it's inhumane.
ALa: Yeah, but what if it's not circumstantial information but immanent information...time sensitive information...
Jericho: Just because it's time sensitive does not mean that it will be accurate when obtained through severe torture. But let me get to what MY basic premise here is:
The Geneva Convention clarified what is and is not acceptable for gov'ts to use as means for extracting info or punishment. The reason I think it is imperative for America to stand by these guidelines is that, as the most powerful nation on earth, we have a duty, a moral obligation to set an example. Even if the enemy we are fighting at the time doesn't abide by those same regulations doesn't mean we should chuck them out the window ourselves. As example setters we have that duty.
ALa: So your premise is based on 'humanity' and ‘morals' ...meaning really 'the sanctity of human life' then?
Jericho: Everything we do should be based on that sanctity....and I see where you're going with this already, but go ahead anyway.
ALa: Ok smarty pants...
Jericho: 8-|
ALa: you capture a man... -He has put a dirty bomb somewhere in Philadelphia...Should you let thousands (millions) of innocents die to respect the 'rights' of one guilty man?
Jericho: And you know he has done this for sure?
ALa: Yes, he has delivered a ransom note asking for the release of Palestinians from Israel’s prisons or the bomb will detinate at a specified know that it is him...
ALa: Not implying he's Muslim or anything...
Jericho: The point here is not whether torture should be used in such circumstance because it is better to hurt one man than let thousands be killed.....the point is whether it is reliable for extracting information. And I think that when a gov't crosses that line, it ends up on the level of the terrorists we hate so much.
ALa: But isn't our moral obligation to the greater good... if we can sacrifice one to save many...
Jericho: The greater good than that greater good is the non-crossing of lines that will demonstrate too many of the world's uneducated and propagandized (both in 3rd world countries and those under the GOP influence in this country) that anything they can think up is acceptable activity. It is not. But anyway, let me give you a hypothetical:
Someone sick piece of shit has kidnapped and done horrible things to your child. At worst, he's going to get 20 years in prison (your child is still alive). You find out you can get revenge on him (something I know I'd want to do). Do you go to that courtroom with your gun and shoot him, knowing you'll get arrested and possibly given a 5 or 10 year sentence? Is it justified for you to get that sentence if you decide to go through with it?
ALa: That isn't a good hypothetical because I said not as revenge -How about this...they catch your child's kidnapper and the child is still alive you torture him to get the info? The child will die if not found...
Jericho: The point is not that it's revenge, the point is that, no matter how justified you might think you are in doing that to him, the rule of law says you aren't allowed to do it. Who are we to skirt that rule of law?
ALa: Answer my question!
Jericho: Answer mine! I was first...
ALa: It is revenge -the child has already been found in your scenario --in my scenario you have the chance to save the life of the child...
Jericho: You can't answer whether it is ever justified to take the law into your own hands?
ALa: Look me 'in the screen' and tell me you aren't going to be hooking up electrodes to that kidnapper and holding his head under water until he talks...
Jericho: I’m not answering until you say 'yes' or 'no' to my question...
ALa: Do you smoke pot? Isn’t that taking the law into your own hands?
Jericho: You still haven't said yes or no...
Jericho: Yes, we should be able to take the law into our own hands? So you should be able to shoot someone who deserves shooting (revenge or not) and not have to go to jail?
ALa: Martin Luther King, Ghandi, Mandella and Thoreau all did it for the greater good… It’s called civil disobedience -but this is getting off the point...
Jericho: There’s a difference in the non-violent protest they used and what we're talking about and you know it!
ALa: None-the-less, It’s still breaking the law...
Jericho: You still haven't answered me.
ALa: If it's self defense or in defense of another -Yes!
Jericho: Should you be able to take the law in your own hands and not face penalty, regardless of your rationale for doing it?
ALa: That is very situation-specific...
Jericho: Ok, so the scenario I laid out, you would accept going to jail for it?
ALa: Should a woman be put in jail that killed her husband that was raping her son? NO... Should a woman go to jail that finally killed the husband that beat her and her kids daily? NO...
Jericho: Should a person go to jail that shoots that asshole that sodomized his/her son? No. BUT they still would...
ALa: This is really off topic... Would you use torture to extract information about where your child was being held by a confirmed maniac?
Jericho: And the reason they would (go to jail) is because the gov't wants to show the rest of the public that you are NOT allowed to take the law into your own hands. And that's exactly what the US does every time it tries justifying defying Geneva Convention standards.
Jericho: It’s totally ON topic.
ALa: Geneva does not apply to terrorists -read it...
Jericho: Uh-huh. It obviously does apply in some way, or the administration wouldn't be backing off their earlier assertion that they didn't need to abide by those rules. Read This...
ALa: "Torturing the terrorist is unconstitutional? Probably. But millions of lives surely outweigh constitutionality. Torture is barbaric? Mass murder is far more barbaric. Indeed, letting millions of innocents die in deference to one who flaunts his guilt is moral cowardice, and unwillingness to dirty one's hands...” Michael Levin (Read His Essay)
ALa: If YOU had caught Mohammad Atta on the morning of 9/11 the towers would still have burned -if I had caught him there would be a chance they could have been saved…or at least evacuated...that's the bottom line...
Jericho: There might have been a chance....or he would have been tortured and given complete bullshit info that would have led to nothing but the decreasing of our standings as human beings. I’m sorry, but this country is based on freedom from that bullshit. You guys want to take it back to the Spanish Inquisition and we all know how successful they were in outing the tens of thousands of witches and heretics. If we truly want to maintain the moral high ground we're so convinced we have, we HAVE to walk the walk.
ALa: So then your changing your argument, now it is actually about world opinion and not 'morality' or 'human life'... doesn't human life trump what Europe thinks of us?
Jericho: It’s about actually BEING moral, not just SAYING we are...
ALa: How is it moral to let thousands die if there was a chance you could have saved them? That is the definition of immoral...
Jericho: And the stress stuff they can do to people, with sleep deprivation and loud music and temp change could be just as effective, if not more, in making someone talk, there is STILL no proof that torture is in any way effective.
ALa: Stress positions can't work for an immanent attack!
Jericho: Neither can torture!
ALa: For a child held by a maniac?
Jericho: You just assume it MIGHT. We MUST maintain the moral high ground!
ALa: It’s worth the chance for that child's life...there are not many that could withstand torture -especially if they think it would get worse if their information was wrong...
Jericho: Me: Moral high ground You: Anything goes
ALa: No -You letting an innocent child die a horrific death that you could have prevented is NOT the moral high ground...
Jericho: I had nothing to do with the child dying. The killer did that. Now, would I not torture someone who had my kid? Of course I would torture him. But when you give that power to the opens up a Pandora's Box that can't be closed.
ALa: But you may have been able to stop it -you then become an accessory to is your moral obligation to do anything it takes to save that child… That’s hypocritical then... every child has a mother and's always someone's kid!
Jericho: You don't become an accessory by not stooping to the level of the most depraved, sick fucks on the planet....should we begin beheading war criminals to show the assholes that have been doing it to us that we can play the same game? No. Why? Because that just gives them license to do it even more.
ALa: NO once again you are delving into torture as a punishment (with beheadings) and I am proposing it as an antidote for the prevention of greater evil...
ALa: Are you mad at me yet?
Jericho: No.
ALa: Damn!
Jericho: But I’m worried you're going to edit out my best stuff...
ALa: I won't edit anything... You're all over the place though and I think deep down you agree with me -but I guess the readers can decide...
Jericho: Let me ask you this: Should there be ANY lines drawn in the scenarios you are talking about? And who should decide when it is or is not appropriate to use torture?
ALa: is only appropriate in extreme cases where lives are on the line...
Jericho: I don't agree with you, either. The fundamental difference here is that I disagree with the state having that kind of control over who is and is not a candidate for torture.
ALa: Where we have definitive proof that this person could make the difference of life and death...
Jericho: Who gets to decide that the threat is imminent? How is it prevented from being abused? This is why I say that it's a Pandora's Box. Because once that line is crossed and torture becomes all goes down hill...
ALa: Pandora’s box? Maybe... Who decides? Not sure...Those (extreme) situations don't happen all that often -But with the ACLU looking to protect every terrorist that seeks to kill us and the possibility of a dirty bomb or anthrax and small pox becoming more real each day -it's something that we need to think about...
Jericho: Good ending. Wait, I have something for you...
A Gift for ALa
ALa: Very funny...

(Test your Abu Gharib knowledge at Mudville Gazette -thanks to Kat for the link...)

In the Sandbox...

Nice Smile...

It is only one who is thoroughly acquainted with the evils of war that can thoroughly understand the profitable way of carrying it on.
-Sun Tzu