a Someone should care, maybe not you....: July 2008 .comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Someone should care, maybe not you....

My thoughts on many things including the army, war, politics, the military corrections system, chaos, life, books, movies, and why there is no blue food. Feel free to comment on what I say. Feedback is nice.

My Photo

40+ year old former teacher, linguist, interrogator, soldier, and lastly convict. We all do stupid things every once and awhile. I am an economic conservative and a firm believer in civil rights. Starting a new life now and frankly not sure what I am going to be doing.

25 July 2008

Late night awakenings.....

Last night just after 1 A.M. my dogs began barking up a storm outside. They'd bark, stop, start again, stop again, start again. Then they just settled in to barking. Often when they settle in to barking it is the staccato alternating sound that mean, we've got something trapped and we are calling the pack in to finish it. I hate that sound ever since the dog that lives at my house got one of my cats like that. Nearly lost two animals that day. The cat to the dog and the dog to me. but the cat pulled through and the dog learned not to mess with the cats after our boot to butt conversation.
But this wasn't that bark. the dog that lives at my house was in continuous highbark. My dog was in one big bark every three or four seconds. I finally got up and stuck my head out the door and yelled for them to shut up. When I did I heard it, "Excuse me! Hey can you help us?"
Oh crud. Someone was out in my yard or on the road in front of the house. (Treat time for the dogs, they were doing their job)I quickly pulled on a pair of pants and walked out to see what was going on. What I found was two teen age girls who had, according to them, had been put out on the dirt road by a guy and another girl who then drove off. There was something about having been coon hunting which was crap because on of the girls was in shorts and a T shirt and the other in light jeans and a T-shirt. But they had called for help, but the cell had died so they were walking towards the pavement. (which was another half mile beyond my house) they said they were scared becasue the guy who had put them out had told them there were "Blacks who grew weed!" in the area who would get them. (I stood up for my neighbors at this point and called BS on that) But I brought them up to the house and let the one use my cell to call her boyfriend who it turns out had gotten her first message and was less than a mile away at this point. He soon arrived and took the girls away and I went back to bed. About 15 minutes later a car began driving up and down my road madly. Every few minutes it would go by again. I guess this was the first guy and girl now coming back and looking for the pair they had put out now that their alone time was done. Judging from how often they drove by they were pretty desperate to find them too. I rather expected the police to show up sometime during the night,(excon living alone in the country, two lost teenage girls, it could have gotten ugly)but they didn't. I guess the people in the car finally called somebody who said the two were home.
The stupid drama of youth.

21 July 2008

This years Mongol Rally

Got underway on the 19th.
Go HERE to track the teams as they check in on their way east.

I still want to do this next year.....

I read two books while I was away in internet free America a couple of weeks ago. (I actually I read several but only two worth discussing) One is left wing, tree hugger, green and the other is right wing, blood and thunder kill-em-all. I strongly recommend both of the books to all of you whatever your particular political persuasion.

The first is the easier read. In fact it is in many ways a pretty formulaic treatise of a member of the east coast liberal elite deciding to chuck it all and go live on a farm and get in touch with his inner whatever. Walden part X. The book is called Farewell my Subaru by Doug Fine. In it Mr. Fine decides to live a green carbon neutral existence by buying a 41 acre spread in New Mexico and returning to nature. He discusses his adventures with flash floods, coyotes (the animal not the smuggler), goats, chickens, solar panels and vegetable oil. It is quite amusing and rather informative about how one can go about trying to get off the grid as they say. The biggest flaw the book has is the author’s inability to avoid snarky put downs of pretty much everyone who he even suspects may have political views different from him. He has constant references to being in the land of “Limbaugh listeners” or while praising a guy who runs a business converting diesel vehicles to run on vegetable oil (while serving on active duty in the Air force) he has to add “and yet he believes he can learn the truth on Fox News.” (note: that may not be word for word what he says I don’t have the book in front of me) That attitude detracts from the overall book. Maybe he thinks he’s being funny, but he isn’t. but that bit aside, overall his adventures with raising his goats, his well, his plumbing and everything else makes a good read. I will be most impressed though when someone writes of how to do all of this while living on 40K a year though.

The second book is Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell and Patrick Robinson. It is the story of Mr. Luttrell,the only SEAL team member to survive a battle in northern Afghanistan in 2005 where his team was trapped on the ground and the entire rescue team coming in to held were shot down and killed. I will confess that I didn’t read the entire book here. The first half looks to be his story of joining the Navy and going through SEAL school. I have read about going through SEAL school before so I skipped over to where they get on the helicopter to head out on their mission in Afghanistan. The leftist in the audience will undoubtedly be disturbed (in fact pretty much everyone might be) by the fact that he attributes all of the deaths to one “mistake” they made. They didn’t kill three goat herders who stumbled onto their hide position. They let them go and they promptly went and told the local Taliban forces where the soldiers were and all hell breaks loose. (note: this same thing happened in Gulf War I when a young goat herder came upon a group of soldiers hunting SCUD Missiles. When the soldiers didn’t shoot him he went back to village and reported what he saw.) The author specifically states that the reason they didn’t kill the herders was because they didn’t want to face kind of shit storm that they knew the press in the US would raise if/when they found about US Special Operations soldiers “murdering” innocent men. He describes the arrival of the Taliban forces, the attempts to break free and escape the wounding and eventual death of his team mates. It is not pleasant happy reading. Then he tells how he managed to escape (wounded also) and was eventually rescued and protected by a local village elder who extended the hospitality of his village to him with all that entails in Afghan culture. While he is talking of his time in hiding in Afghanistan he also tells what was going on at his parents home in Texas and the support they received from the Navy, their neighbors and just folks who came from miles around to do whatever they could. He tells of his eventual rescue by Army Rangers and Special Forces soldiers and his return to the US.

The leftists out here will not appreciate his opinions of your views on how wars should be fought or his praise for President Bush. But you should read it anyway because you need to see these conflicts through the eyes of both sides.
Interestingly enough, at the time the book was published the author had volunteered to deploy with his new team to Iraq. He was offered a stateside support position but turned it down because he felt the need to be there with his new team mates and give them direct support in the field when they needed it.

Buy them both, read them both.

14 July 2008

Why I like McCain

Sorry I haven’t posted this earlier. I have been away fro awhile in an internet free zone. I was off dog sitting for my sister (and doing various chores around her house). She has no Net at her house and I am just not willing to go find some bar or coffee shop hang out in and surf the web. So I am way behind in everything that is going on.

But, UWL asked why I like McCain. I will try and answer that.

First allow me to state that I supported McCain for President back in 2000 also. I was exceptionally annoyed when he dropped out after losing South Carolina. I REALLY REALLY hate this system where in most elections, the Primaries are over after 3 or four states vote. In fact I loathe it. But that was a different post. I liked that fact that McCain did not kowtow to the religious right. I admired his declaration that Christian fundamentalism was essentially a form of religious extremism. I was disappointed that he toned that down this time although I totally understand why he did. I like the fact that he has a practical, rational, and functional view of the illegal immigration problem. I like the fact that McCain has not only a willingness, but a PROVEN ABILITY to cross party lines in order to get things done in government. This petty factionalism that oozes from both of the major parties, their lackeys and lickspittles disgusts me.

I like McCain’s willingness to believe that Golbal Warming is an issue to be addressed and also his clear eyed, non hysterical approach to the issue. I agree with his thought that nuclear energy is a very necessary component of a rational plan to reduce the use of carbon based fuels. I am also quite willing to drill for oil in the places that are currently being held out of production. (the west coast of Florida and the artic) Yes, I realize that this won’t solve the current problems but, since by all accounts the demand for oil is only going to keep increasing (even if we reduce our use India and China will still be increasing theirs) this will put us in a better position when these wells come online. I also approve of his resistance to increasing taxes on the very companies that are to a great extent doing the research in alternative fuels and energy sources; namely the oil companies. I like the fact that McCain is willing to speak truth to voters such as those in Michigan where he said they just needed to get used to the idea that their old jobs weren’t coming back. They aren’t. New jobs will come but the big heavy industrial jobs that drove Detroit for so long are not going to return. It is simple economics.

I like McCain’s stance on the War; that we need to FINISH it. Not just declare victory and run home.

That is a pretty simple summary of my views. There is a lot more that can be said and you can be sure that there are issues that the Senator and I disagree on too. If you care to question my views, agree, disagree, whatever, feel free. But do maintain a civil discourse.

01 July 2008

A tempest in a teapot.

There has been a lot going on recently. The Supreme Court is making folks on all sides of the political spectrum upset, the Army is officially announcing that the post invasion situation in Iraq was unplanned and totally screwed up, (something that has been pretty obvious to everyone except the President for several years) my stock in an oil company keeps getting more and more valuable,(Too bad I don't own enough to retire rich right now)talking heads on the right are now screaming that we need "to do something" about al queda in Pakistan. (Namely invade the place. Can you say "REALLY BAD IDEA!"?)

But what I am talking about today was the rightwing talking heads reaction to Wesley Clark's comment "Well, I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be president," . This has engendered a firestorm of protest and some apologies from the Obama camp.

Why? Getting shot down doesn't qualify anyone for anything except a hearty congratulations if they survive. This is just stupid. Clark was being defensive because he had said McCain wasn't experienced enough to be President becasue he had never served in an executive position. The interviewer than pointed out that Obama had no such experience either an "...hadn't ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down." What Clark should have done was point out why Obama was qualified. It is quite telling that instead of doing so he makes a back handed crack about being shot down. Guess he can't cite Obama's qualifications either.

Understand, I think McCain should be our next President. (Heck, if I had had my way he would have been our current President) But what Clark said wasn't an insult to McCain, nor was it belittling his service. It was just a very true statement. McCain is the best qualified man running to be President. And it has nothing to do with getting shot down.