Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Vote or shut the @#$% up!!

This will be last of my pre-election rants.

The experts, pundits, and wags are still calling the thing a toss-up.

I think voter turnout with be the deciding factor.

If there's any question, I'm gonna be voting anti-Democrats, yet again! I hate it, but it's the Devils choice. Here in WV there's a decent chance at the State level to see a real change. Whether that is an improvement or not, who knows.

I have 3 things to close with.

1 - If you don't vote STFU!!!!!

2 - I'm headed back to PA this weekend (weather permitting) to do a small thing to Boot Murtha. What have you done?

3 - Term limits is a good idea that doesn't go far enough. If we're gonna think of changing the Constitution I'd like to propose we take it several steps further.

We select our congresscritters out of the jury pool. If a jury is wise enough to decide life or death issues they are wise enough to sit in DC. They'd be paid and treated exactly like our military - live in barracks, eat military chow, etc.


[edit] I need to extend my emphasis somewhat. You need to make a real effort to change one mind, or one vote. Voting and doing nothing else is only a half step.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

New piece, old puzzle

Decurion has a post up: It's short enough to quote here in it's entirety.

One thing I will say about Mr. Hajji

He may be a murderous psychopathic terrorist who blows up little kids because he hasn't got the stones to take us on head-on, but. . .

There are days when I think I have more in common with him than I do with some civilians back home. At least he knows what he stands for, what he stands against, and what he will kill or die for.

Your average American wouldn't sacrifice anything for anything but the Almighty Dollar, and would gleefully ignore his God, his family, and his country in pursuit of the same.

There's a reason the surreality of Iraq seems more rational and real than the pure artificiality of the States.

Can't help but be reminded of Bill Whittle's Tribes and, further, Lt. Colonel Grossman and his 'sheep, wolf, sheepdog' paradigm.

Since World War II there has existed a disconnect in this country. I'm not altogether sure if someone actually formulated the idea, or if it just sort of happened. I suppose the Truman administration, fresh on the heels of WWII, felt it had to mask the idea of war in some manner when venturing in to Korea.

Is it really any wonder that Korea, and Viet Nam were lost here in CONUS? And that Iraq may be as well?

We've had no formal Declaration of WAR since World War II!

There's an old saw about idle hands being the devil's tools, and that's where we are now. Most civilians see absolutely no connection between GWOT and themselves. It's natural to grow more like the villagers in the 'Boy Who Cried Wolf'.

Sure there seems no formal enemy state to declare war on, but this is a trivial excuse to avoid the truth of the matter. Terrorism is a tactic, and yet our leaders talk about a War on Terror as if this provides some clarity, but it simply doesn't. Terrorism on its own is simply a law enforcement issue.

This all leads me to some truths. We attacked Iraq because it seemed the easiest target. It was a valid target, as was Afghanistan, but mainly because it seemed the easiest. It fit with the notion of never formally declaring war. If we don't formally declare war with don't need to consider the obvious way to grow the military to the size needed to do the job of attacking Syria and Iran as well. Decurion feels 'the draft' would be a mistake, but I don't - IF AND ONLY IF we declare war.

The issue is very complicated, for instance, could we field a military the size needed to do the job? Could we equip them? Could we provide the high tech gear they'd need. Can we produce the steel for armor. And so on. I frankly have my doubts.

So here's the conundrum at the root of any response to Decurion's post. If we want (or expect) the majority of our population to be involved they have to be asked. If they're asked and say yes - could we even do what it would take any more? The disconnect permeates the country and it's capabilities.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Just in case...

H/T Supe

I dunno if any on else has caught this yet, but since it parallels my last post I'll point it out.

Liberal armchair generals are still fighting the last war

by Fred Hutchison

The tendency of generals to re-fight the last war has been a recurring phenomenon since Carl Von Clausewitz wrote about it in his book On War (published 1832). Sometimes intellectuals who play armchair general make the same mistake. Liberals seem to be caught in a repeating time loop based on a fixation with Vietnam. Many liberals who oppose the Iraqi War are using some of the same arguments that they or their fathers used in opposing the Vietnam War. Historical memory is tricky. Agenda-driven people who don't check their facts often selectively reconstruct their memories of historical events. Liberals want to remember the Vietnam War as a story of liberal antiwar activists as the heroes and the Vietnam hawks as the villains. They wish to forget the terrible historical consequences of the anti-war movement, particularly the massive blood purges in Vietnam and Cambodia after the war. In order to celebrate themselves and ignore the consequences of their actions, liberals have perpetuated a mythological version of the Vietnam War.

Many liberal armchair generals are using Vietnam, a war that they do not understand, as a guide to interpreting the war in Iraq, another war they do not understand. Iraq is a different kind of war, with different kinds of ideologies, loyalties, and resentments among the people, and different tactics for fighting. Using Vietnam as a lens can only blur one's vision about Iraq...



Democrats have an opportunity to take control of the House of Representatives and the Senate. While not all Democrats in Congress are under the spell of Vietnam, their leaders in the House and Senate are anti-war liberals and Neo-McGovernites. If power comes into their hands, they are likely to abandon the Iraqis to their fate. In 1973-74, the Democrats abandoned the Vietnamese and Cambodians to annihilation and never looked back. If the Democrats take power in January 2007, they are chafing at the bit to abandon the Iraqis to unimaginable horror.

It is not too late to stop the Democrats from taking control of Congress. Let us join ranks to stop them.

Read the Article

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Thesis: Viet Nam was a Moral victory

Premise: The liberal/left succeeded in stopping a war, removing a President(maybe two counting Nixon) and felt they had established themselves on the high moral ground.

Background: People banded together and stopped a war. It was the whole 'power to the people' schema made manifest.

Is not a significant part of how the liberal/left define themselves as champions of 'the little people?

Well,The Little People took to the streets (with no small guidance from the liberal/left) and made their voices heard... and accomplished a THING.

LBJ's decision not to run again was certainly influenced by the anti-war folks, and it's reasonable to extrapolate that the mechanism for Nixon's eventual downfall was set in motion by LBJ's decision.

So we have a war ended, one President unseated, and another exposed as a criminal.

With Viet Nam as a focus The People brought sweeping changes to America in several other notable areas, as well.

What else might that be called? And I'm not looking for Pyrrhic victory, although I think it was.


I have no idea how to begin to write a genuine thesis. I was having an exchange (sorta) with a gleeful member of the liberal/left (you know the type) she was stunned because I proposed the Viet Nam War wound up as moral victory for the liberal/left. I was stunned that she (they)didn't want to take credit.

Posting this here for fun.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Once again...

With profound apologies to Lynyrd Skynyrd:

In Blue States they love the Demos
Now we all did what we could do
Now Foley's email does not bother me
Does your conscience bother you?
Tell the truth

A clock is ticking... We do not need to beat John Kerry just yet. We do need to undo the defeat-ocrats. Pick one in your state, and do your duty! Although there are some uncanny similarities involved, Kerry is not the issue come this November.

The Republicans have little to commend them, save the small issue of National Defense.

There are two issues that we can address:

Is Islamic Imperialism a valid threat, or is it just a law enforcement thing?

Do our borders work, or do we need to do something?

If either issue concerns you it's time to move. Drag your relatives to the polls. Talk to your neighbors. Get out there and be annoying until you are heard.

A clock is ticking...

I will be sounding the tocsin again. Get out of the past for a few days. Get out of your own selves for a few days. The game's afoot and doing nothing is not the answer.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Well Yeah!

Don Surber has a post up. It's one of those that I sometimes see that makes me go "Duh?" How many ways does it need to be said? Don does it well, but still...

John Kerry at the Huffington Post wrote today:

“There’s nothing - nothing - in my life in public service I regret more, nothing even close. We should all be willing to say: I was wrong, I should not have voted for the Iraq War Resolution.”

Why is this man still in the Senate?

If that is truly how he feels, if he truly has remorse or regret for his vote, then for one time in his life in Washington, D.C., John Kerry should take responsibility for his actions and try to make amends by resigning.

Read the whole thing

Not that this will happen. but it is sure a delight to contemplate as single element of a wasted life. He doesn't regret trivial little things like damning 'Nam vets. Only that he voted for our efforts in Iraq!

Salt on a wound, and angry enough to end this post without invective and expletives for the sake of decorum.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Me, Chicken Little, and the 'Boy Who Cried Wolf'

One day Chicken Little was walking in the woods when an acorn fell on his head.
"Oh my goodness!" said Chicken Little. "The sky is falling! I must go and tell the king.

Most of you know the rest, in some versions the fox gets the chicken and his friends.

Then there's the tale of the 'Boy who cried wolf' who comes to a bad end for lying about a threat to get attention.

These fables and others like them permeate our society. We live in a world where we refuse to believe in some threats, because some other threats aren't real. It's a strange and troubling disconnect.

The following dichotomies are typical of this fabulist point of view. Global climate change requires massive international efforts to correct... Global terrorism is a simple law enforcement issue. American imperialism is heinous in the eyes of the world... Islamic imperialism can be dealt with by talking it over. Which is the fable and which is reality waiting to bite you on the ass?

Chicken Little was concerned that the sky was falling; so concerned that he ignored the threat posed by the fox. Once the fox had eaten the issue of the whether the sky was falling no longer mattered to Chicken Little.

Was the Boy at fault or was it the townspeople who refused to come when the threat was real?

We haven't suffer another attack like 9/11 since 9/11. Do we now ignore the threat because the threat colors change and nothing happens?

It's a puzzle with missing pieces. Some will still try to put the puzzle together while pretending the missing pieces are of no concern.

So how and and why does any of this matter? A narrow focus means that peripheral things will be missed. Too broad a focus means that narrowly critical things will be missed. Here's my clue. I won't let fables and wishful thinking shape my world view. If you wax and wane with whatever tide floats your boat you'll wind up under water, or to stretch the analogy, you'll wind up eaten by the fox or the wolf.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

We Are Marshall

I come from the "Big City" in West Virginia. Sadly, the house I was born into, as well as the houses of both sets of grandparents on Third Avenue, are now tennis courts accross the street from the Marshall University library.

I remember sledding down the big hills that have long been replaced by new Science Building. I also remember moving to the inner city of Detroit, with the hillbilly accent that made me a target of afternoon adventures.

As I got older, I was the only peron I know that was aware of the "Thundering Herd." It was late fall in 1970 as I sat in my barracks at Sheppard AFB, when I heard of the plane crash that wiped out the entire Marshall football team. Their plane crashed short of Tri-State Airport, just a short hop over the hill my family home is located.

I went back to Huntington this spring, as I do most every year, for my mother's birthday. The town was agog with movie sets and stars. I stayed at the same hotel with Mathew McConaughey, although I cannot add myself to the many that claimed sightings of the star.

What in the world does this have to do with anything?

No matter where I live now, my roots and family are in West Virginia. No matter what I do now, my heart is that of an American. I served my country during Viet Nam, but never went there.

I'm just a lone Gray Dog, looking for a place to fit in. (Not a whine, but a real desire)

I thank Zero for the opportunity to sit here for a while. I hope I will be able to contribute something worthwhile.

For now I will just close with something close to home: "We Are Marshall!"

The ONE Thing

I hate politics! I find it one of the most frustrating human endeavors.
1 a : the art or science of government b : the art or science concerned with guiding or influencing governmental policy c : the art or science concerned with winning and holding control over a government.
There are more definitions, but the idea of honest discourse is nowhere to be found. Even the events called 'debates' rarely fulfill the basic requirements: a regulated discussion of a proposition between two matched sides.

This leaves me, as a voter, seeking The One Thing. What one thing does everything else use as a foundation? I then can ignore everything else as secondary. This simplifies things quite a bit. Being simple minded, I appreciate simple ideas. No nuance, or polls about what others think, no spin doctors, etc, just The One Thing .

This mid-term election (perhaps moreso than the 2008 election) The One Thing is my fear of seeing a Spanish speaking Islamic cloud on our horizon.

Any candidate that wants my vote or other support need only show the same concern consistantly. This includes voting records, political posturing, speaches and the like. My candidate will not offer differing positions depending on where he's speechifying or what the polls say.
site stats