“The real problem is not that we are different, nor that we disagree and have conflict. It's that most of us automatically view conflict as something negative rather than as a tool God can use to help us better understand ourselves and one another.

--Robert Ricciardelli”

Friday, March 30, 2007

03/30 Morning Report

(…I haven’t been writing much lately. I’ve been pretty busy with school and tax season at the brokerage. But, I keep looking at things in the Middle East and wanting to scream...)

First, we have the continuing Iranian shenanigans. As the Iranians continue their proganda campaign using captured British crewmen, the UK ambassador to the UN does what?

At the UN headquarters in New York the UK asked the security council to support a statement expressing grave concern about the continuing detention of the crew.
Grave concern? The Iranians faked a situation to pressure the world into caving to their demands and goals. This request for a statement is in spite of satellite records showing the British were 1.7 nautical miles inside Iraqi waters. Now, it seems the UN turned down the British request.
(…what do you want to bet the Iranians get what they want out of this violation of international law without penalty…)

Next, probably taking a cue from the Iranians, the Arabs are demanding Israel accept a peace deal or else. Given that the Israelis turned down the same offer back in 2002, do the Arab leaders really think they will get a different response for this deal? I have to admit I thought this summary of the meeting by Israeli Prime Minister Olmert was really interesting:
"This process has brought the influential countries in the Arab world to begin to realize that Israel is not the biggest of all their troubles. This is a revolutionary change in their perception.
"(…forgive me…but I haven’t seen anything different in all this…)

Meanwhile, Congress is setting the withdrawal of US troops from Iraq. I originally heard the Democrats screaming for the end of 2008. The new deadline ? March 31, 2008.
In a mostly party-line 51-47 vote, the Democratic-controlled Senate told Bush to start withdrawing the troops this year with the goal of getting all combat soldiers out by March 31, 2008.
Personally, I liked Lycos news statement on this better. It was much more accurate:
A defiant, Democratic-controlled Senate approved legislation Thursday calling for the withdrawal of U.S. combat troops from Iraq within a year…
Two weeks ago, the Democrats failed to get the same legislation passed. Bush is right, it will encourage the insurgents and terrorists. All they have to do is wait until the US leaves and then have free reign. I think the Iraqis believe their military and security forces will not be ready by then. That might explain why two years ago and then in September the Iraqi President said American forces would be needed long term. Personally this abandonment, like the abandonment we did to the Vietnamese, makes me want to cry.
(…will the Democrats negotiate on this if Bush does…or if circumstances change?...only time will tell…but I doubt it…)

Of course, you can always go read Michael Yon for an accurate, on-the-ground description of what is going on. He fumes about the media for only covering the news from safe areas. He fumes even harder at the military for not giving the media more access. And, he believes in the forces on the ground. You should go check it out.

And, finally, Any Soldier reported the sad news that Sgt. Wayne R. Cornell, of Holstein, Nebraska, died March 20 in Baghdad, when an IED detonated near his vehicle during combat operations. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Ft. Riley, Kansas.

Sgt. Cornell, at our house we remember your cry—the cry of all warriors:
"Tell them of us and say,
For their tomorrow, we gave our today."
--The Kohima Epitaph--
We remember what you have given. And we say thank you for the tomorrows you have given others. May God give back to your family more than they have sacrificed and lost.

And, now, we dance In Memoriam.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

03/28 Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Post Was Suggested By Kathi

Billy Hodges
Billy Hodges, kneeling center.

Billy Hodges, who served in the U.S. Army and Texas National Guard between 1971-1979, is not only being profiled for his service, but also for what he's done since then. Mr. Hodges runs an organization based in El Campo, Tx called Hunts For Heroes. They also have chapter in South Carolina , Arkansas , Mississippi , and California and what they do is take soldiers who've been wounded in battle on hunting and fishing trips and other outdoor related activities. All free of charge.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.

Monday, March 26, 2007

03/26 Hockey Notes

(…I’ve been busy as all get out at work this last month or so, and going back to school, so I haven’t had time to comment on the season for a bit. But, with the playoffs roaring up on us, I thought I would take a few minutes and spare some thoughts…)

Alan Muir over at Sports illustrated put an interesting light on Stars-Predators-Modano brouhaha. I’ll give him that Mikey should maybe have been penalized for slashing. But…becoming the highest scoring American ever without recognition is irrelevant? Give me a break. Especially after giving kudos to the Stars for honoring Recchi for #500.
(…this is little more than talking out of both sides of the mouth…)

Here are the current playoff matchups. There are some real interesting pairs at the moment. Does anyone remember how long it’s been since Dallas and Vancouver have played each other in the Second Season? And, with Nashville pretty well ensconced in first place in the West, wouldn’t it be interesting to see them play the Avs? And how far will Atlanta and Pittsburgh get?
(…how about Buffalo against either one of them for the Eastern championship…and Nashville against Anaheim for the West…)

For those who may have been too busy to keep up with all the trades at the deadline, The Hockey News provides this recap. They also provide their analysis of who were the winners and losers of all the trades.

Still over at The Hockey News, there was this interesting article on the role of fighting in North American professional hockey. I say it that way because there is no fighting allowed in College or European hockey. I’ve never had a problem with guys losing their tempers and swapping knuckles. They put some time in the box to cool off, and the game goes on. The thing I never liked—and I grew up with the bench clearing stuff of the sixties and seventies—was sending someone out to start a fight to get fans riled up. I’m glad to see that level of violence gone from the game. My personal opinion is as long as penalties fit the crime, I think it will be OK.
(…everyone is welcome to weigh in with their opinion on this one, of course…)

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Butch, the Rooster

John the farmer was in the fertilized egg business. He had several hundred young hens called pullets and eight or ten roosters, whose job was to fertilize the eggs.

The farmer kept records and any rooster that didn't perform went into the soup pot and was replaced. That took an awful lot of his time so he bought a set of tiny bells and attached them to his roosters. Each bell had a different tone so John could tell from a distance, which rooster was performing.

Now he could sit on the porch and fill out an efficiency report simply by listening to the bells. The farmers favorite rooster was old Butch, a very fine specimen he was too. But on this particular morning John noticed old Butch's bell hadn't rung at all! John went to investigate.

The other roosters were chasing pullets, bells-a-ringing. The pullets, hearing the roosters coming, would run for cover. But, to Farmer John's amazement, Butch had his bell in his beak, so it couldn't ring. He'd sneak up on a pullet, do his job and walk on to the next one. John was so proud of Butch, he entered him in the county fair and Butch became an overnight sensation among the judges.

The result... The judges not only awarded Butch the "No Bell Piece Prize" but they also awarded him the "Pulletsurprise" as well.

Clearly Butch was a Politician in the making. Who else could figure out how to win two of the most highly coveted awards on our planet by being the best at sneaking up on the populace and screwing them when they weren't paying attention?

Friday, March 23, 2007

The New "Who's On First"

(...you have to be old enough to remember Abbott and Costello, and too old to REALLY understand computers, to fully appreciate this. However…If Bud Abbott and Lou Costello were alive today, their infamous sketch, "Who's on First?" might have turned out something like this...)


ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?
COSTELLO: Thanks. I'm setting up an office in my den and I'm
thinking about buying a computer.
COSTELLO: No, the name's Lou.
ABBOTT: Your computer?
COSTELLO: I don't own a computer. I want to buy one.
COSTELLO: I told you, my name's Lou.
ABBOTT: What about Windows?
COSTELLO: Why? Will it get stuffy in here?
ABBOTT: Do you want a computer with Windows?
COSTELLO: I don't know. What will I see when I look at the
ABBOTT: Wallpaper.
COSTELLO: Never mind the windows. I need a computer and
ABBOTT: Software for Windows?
COSTELLO: No. On the computer! I need something I can use to
write proposals, track expenses and run my business. What do you
ABBOTT: Office.
COSTELLO: Yeah, for my office. Can you recommend anything?
ABBOTT: I just did.
COSTELLO: You just did what?
ABBOTT: Recommend something.
COSTELLO: You recommended something?
COSTELLO: For my office?
COSTELLO: OK, what did you recommend for my office?
ABBOTT: Office.
COSTELLO: Yes, for my office!
ABBOTT: I recommend Office with Windows.
COSTELLO: I already have an office with windows! OK, let's just
say I'm sitting at my computer and I want to type a proposal. What
do I need?
COSTELLO: What word?
ABBOTT: Word in Office.
COSTELLO: The only word in office is office.
ABBOTT: The Word in Office for Windows.
COSTELLO: Which word in office for windows?
ABBOTT: The Word you get when you click the blue "W".
COSTELLO: I'm going to click your blue "w" if you don't start
with some straight answers. What about financial bookkeeping? You
have anything I can track my money with?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: That's right. What do you have?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: I need money to track my money?
ABBOTT: It comes bundled with your computer.
COSTELLO: What's bundled with my computer?
ABBOTT: Money.
COSTELLO: Money comes with my computer?
ABBOTT: Yes. No extra charge.
COSTELLO: I get a bundle of money with my computer? How much?
ABBOTT: One copy.
COSTELLO: Isn't it illegal to copy money?
ABBOTT: Microsoft gave us a license to copy Money.
COSTELLO: They can give you a license to copy money?

(A few days later)

ABBOTT: Super Duper computer store. Can I help you?
COSTELLO: How do I turn my computer off?
ABBOTT: Click on "START".............

(...for those of you who have never seen the original version...here is a link to in at YouTube...it's a hoot...)

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

03/21 Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Soldier Was Suggested By Jenn

Capt. Alan B. Rowe
Capt. Alan B. Rowe
35 years old from Hagerman, Idaho
1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center
September 3, 2004

The Perfect Marine. That's how many describe Capt. Alan B. Rowe. Respected and dedicated to the Corps and still able to be a husband and father.

Rowe, who was on his fourth deployment since joining the Corps in 1985, died with two other Marines, Lance Cpl. Nicholas Wilt, 23, of Tampa, Florida, and 1st Lt. Ronald Winchester, 25, of Rockville Center, N.Y., when a remote-controlled explosive device detonated as they returned to their vehicle after inspecting a bridge in Anbar province, near the Syrian border.

"He was a quiet, humble person and extremely polite," his widow, Dawn, recalled from their early days of dating. "He was a traditional type of gentleman. My mom was surprised to meet such a ... perfect-picture Marine." "He did a great job balancing a pretty intense Marine Corps career with also being a great husband and father. He worked extremely hard to balance it." "He was so dedicated to the Marine Corps. He was really driven and believed in what he did. He was a MarineĆ¢€™s Marine. Tall, blond and fit. Kind of the mental image you think of when you think of the Marine Corps."

A week after his death, Capt. Rowe was posthumously promoted to major. He leaves behind his wife and two children.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Leg Wax

(...I read this email the other day, and darn near died for lack of air...if this isn't something to make your Monday enjoyable...I'm not sure I can pray hard enough for you...it's long...but read it anyway...I'm still crying from laughing so hard...Ladies, God bless you...guys...take your girl to dinner...)

All hair removal methods have tricked women with their promises of easy, painless removal - The epilady, scissors, razors, Nair and now...the wax.

My night began as any other normal weeknight. Come home, fix dinner, play with the kids. I then had the thought that would ring painfully in my mind for the next few hours: "Maybe I should pull the waxing kit out of the medicine cabinet." So I headed to the site of my demise: the bathroom.

It was one of those "cold wax" kits. No melting a clump of hot wax, you
just rub the strips together in your hand, they get warm and you peel them apart and press them to your leg (or wherever else) and you pull the hair right off. No muss, no fuss. How hard can it be? I mean, I'm not a genius, but I am mechanically inclined enough to figure this out. (YA THINK!?!)

So I pull one of the thin strips out. Its two strips facing each other
stuck together. Instead of rubbing them together, my genius kicks in so I get out the hair dryer and heat it to 1000 degrees. ("Cold wax,"
yeah...right!) I lay the strip across my thigh. Hold the skin around it
tight and pull. It works! OK, so it wasn't the best feeling, but it wasn't too bad. I can do this! Hair removal no longer eludes me! I am She-rah, fighter of all wayward body hair and maker of smooth skin extraordinaire.

With my next wax strip I move north. After checking on the kids, I sneak back into the bathroom, for the ultimate hair fighting championship. I drop my panties and place one foot on the toilet. Using the same procedure, I apply the one strip across the right side of my bikini line, covering the right half of my *hoo-hoo* and stretching down to the inside of my butt cheek (Yes, it was a long strip) I inhale deeply and brace myself...RRRRIIIPPP!!!!

I'm blind!!! Blinded from pain!!!!....OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!!

Vision returning, I notice that I've only managed to pull off half the strip. CRAP!!! Another deep breath and…


Everything is swirly and spotted. I think I may pass out...must stay conscious...Do I hear crashing drums??? Breathe, breathe...OK, back to normal.

I want to see my trophy - a wax covered strip, the one that has caused me so much pain, with my hairy pelt sticking to it. I want to revel in the glory that is my triumph over body hair. I hold up the strip!

There's no hair on it. Where is the hair??? WHERE IS THE WAX???

Slowly I ease my head down, foot still perched on the toilet. I see the hair. The hair that should be on the strip. I touch…I am touching wax.


I run my fingers over the most sensitive part of my body, which is now
covered in cold wax and matted hair. Then I make the next BIG mistake...remember my foot is still propped up on the toilet? I know I need to do something. So I put my foot down.

DAMN!!!!!!!! I hear the slamming of a cell door.

*hoo-hoo*? Sealed shut!

Butt?? Sealed shut!

I penguin walk around the bathroom trying to figure out what to do and think to myself "Please don't let me get the urge to poop. My head may pop off!"

What can I do to melt the wax? Hot water!! Hot water melts wax!!! I'll run the hottest water I can stand into the bathtub, get in, immerse the wax-covered bits and the wax should melt and I can gently wipe it off,


I get in the tub - the water is slightly hotter than that used to torture prisoners of war or sterilize surgical equipment - I sit.

Now, the only thing worse than having your nether regions glued together is having them glued together and then glued to the bottom of the tub...in scalding hot water. Which, by the way, doesn't melt cold wax.

So, now I'm stuck to the bottom of the tub as though I had cement-epoxied myself to the porcelain!!

God bless the man who had convinced me a few months ago to have a phone put in the bathroom!!!!!

I call my friend, thinking surely she has waxed before and has some secret of how to get me undone. It's a very good conversation starter - "So, my butt and who-ha are glued together to the bottom of the tub!"

There is a slight pause She doesn't know any secret tricks for removal but she does try to hide her laughter from me. She wants to know exactly where the wax is located, "Are we talking cheeks or who-ha?"

She's laughing out loud by now...I can hear her. I give her the rundown and she suggests I call the number on the side of the box. YEAH!!!!! Right!! I should be the joke of someone else's night.

While we go through various solutions. I resort to scraping the wax off with a razor. Nothing feels better then to have your girlie goodies covered in hot wax, glued shut, stuck to the tub in super hot water and then dry-shaving the sticky wax off!!

By now the brain is not working, dignity has taken a major hike and I'm
pretty sure I'm going to need Post-Traumatic Stress counseling for this
event. My friend is still talking with me when I finally see my saving grace...the lotion they give you to remove the excess wax. What do I really have to lose at this point? I rub some on and…

OH MY GOD!!!!!!!

The scream probably woke the kids and scared the dickens out of my friend. It's sooo painful, I but I really don't care. "IT WORKS!! It works!!" I get a hearty congratulation from my friend and she hangs up.

I successfully remove the remainder of the wax and then notice to my grief and despair.....THE HAIR IS STILL THERE.......ALL OF IT!!!!!!!!!!

So I recklessly shave it off. Heck, I'm numb by now Nothing hurts. I could have amputated my own leg at this point.

Next week I'm going to try hair color......Now that's funny ........

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Isn't That Precious

(...still slammed with school and work...I'm sharing the laughs that come to my email box...enjoy!...)

Two nicely dressed ladies happen to start up a conversation during an endless wait in the LAX airport.

The first lady was an arrogant California woman married to a wealthy

The second was a well mannered elderly woman from the South.

When the conversation centered on whether they had any children the California woman started by saying, "When my first child was born, my husband built a beautiful mansion for me."

The lady from the South commented, "Well, isn't that precious?"

The first woman continued, "When my second child was born, my husband bought me a beautiful Mercedes-Benz."

Again, the lady from the South commented, "Well, isn't that precious?"

The first woman continued boasting, "Then, when my third child was born, my husband bought me this exquisite diamond bracelet."

Yet again, the Southern lady commented, "Well, isn't that precious?"

The first woman then asked her companion , "What did your husband buy for you when you had your first child?"

"My husband sent me to charm school," declared the Southern lady.

"Charm school?" the first woman cried, "Oh my God! What on earth for?" said the first woman.

The Southern lady responded, "Well for example, instead of saying 'Who
gives a shi-?' I learned to say--- Well, isn't that precious?"

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The New Weapons Programs

In an effort to trim costs, the Democrat controlled Congress is proposing some new, top secret weapons systems. Pictures of these highly classified programs have been leaked to the public, by an anonymous source, and are revealed here.

The New Hummer!

The New Ground Support Gun Pod (Model A)

The New Ground Support Gun Pod (Model B)

(...even at this late date, these competing designs are still under review, and a leading candidate has not yet been identified...my sources indicate the principle point of disagreement seems to be that Model A sports a higher rate of fire, while Model B sports a higher caliber weapon...)

The Latest In Smart Weaponry

(...while the developer is still trying to solve the obvious propulsion problems, my sources indicate that this idea already has the go ahead for production...)

The New Coastal Patrol Boats

(...I'm led to believe that John Kerry is really proud of this idea...my sources indicate this was developed based on his recollections from Vietnam...)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

03/13 Wednesday Hero

Almost a month ago, the Wednesday Hero Blogroll received an email from a reader named Mike Gardner that contained something he had written in honor of this country's heroes. He asked that it be considered for a future post. It took almost a month, but here is his tribute.

At The Right Time, We Remember

The honor roll goes back farther than we can remember, it contains names we will never know...

I wasn't there when the American Colonial Army stood winter guard in the snows of Valley Forge wearing bloody rags for boots as they fought for my freedom.

I wasn't there in the war of 1812.

I wasn't in the trenches when the German's seared the lungs of young American men with mustard gas as they fought for my freedom in World War One.

I wasn't at Pearl Harbor when a single Japanese bomb detonated a million pounds of black powder on the Arizona and instantaneously killed over one thousand American sailors preparing to defend my freedom against the Japanese and the Nazis.

I didn't see the bullet riddled bodies of the Americans who died defending my freedom in Korea.

I only vaguely remember the nightly news clips of American soldiers as they carried out our government's orders in the jungles and swamps and tunnels of Vietnam.

I have never been with a family who lost a son or a daughter defending Kuwait, Afghanistan, or Iraq.

I wasn't there with any of them when they suffered as prisoners of war in any of these wars.

I have never been with a family whose child died in a peace time military training exercise.

Not every one of our veterans saw combat. Some were clerks, cooks, mechanics, machinists. Some served during war time, some served during peace time, some serve in peace today, ready for battle tomorrow. Today they prepare for the ongoing war against terrorists. Some gave their lives, some suffered wounds, some saw things that no human should ever have to see, and many did things that no human should ever have to do. And all gave their daily life, for a period of time, while many more gave their time to work in the industries that sustained our veterans.

Not all of those who have protected my freedom were even in the military. Some of them were the firemen, policemen, and paramedics who risked their lives each day, rushing in where most of us would never tread. Some are the doctors and nurses who treat the wounded, and go home and cry for them. Some of them were "just" passengers on commercial airline flights who, with faith in Christ, calmly chose to fight, and die if necessary, rather than let Flight 93 be used as a weapon against their country and their fellow citizens.

When I tried to join the US Air Force, my application was turned down for medical reasons.

Because others were, and will be there, I am privileged to continue to live in the greatest nation the world has ever known and to enjoy the greatest freedoms that any people have ever known.

The honor roll stretches forward to times, and places, and names we will never know...

And so I thank you, veteran, whoever you are, and wherever you are, whenever your service.

Thank you Vet. Thanks Dad. Today, I remember WHY I am free, and I thank you.

I know that when you were asked, at the right time, like Christ, you gave your life for me.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Teacher Applicant

After being interviewed by the school administration, the eager teaching prospect

Let me see If I've got this right.

You want me to go into that room with all those kids, and fill their every waking moment with a love for learning.

And, I'm supposed to instill a sense of pride in their ethnicity, modify their disruptive behavior, observe them for signs of abuse and even censor their T-shirt messages and dress habits.

You want me to wage a war on drugs and sexually transmitted diseases, check their backpacks for weapons of mass destruction, and raise their self esteem.

You want me to teach them patriotism, good citizenship, sportsmanship, fair play, how to register to vote, how to balance a checkbook, and how to apply for a job.

I am to check their heads for lice, maintain a safe environment, recognize signs of antisocial behavior, make sure all students pass the state exams--even those who don't come to school regularly or complete any of their assignments.

Plus, I am to make sure that all of the students with handicaps Get an equal education regardless of the extent of their mental or physical handicap.

I am to communicate regularly with the parents by letter, telephone, newsletter and report card.

And, I’m supposed to do ALL this with just a piece of chalk, a computer, a few books, a bulletin board, a big smile, AND a starting salary that qualifies my family for food stamps!

You want me to do all of this…

And, then you tell me...


03/12 The power of religion...?

I have studied sacred writings of all major religions searching for an
answer, and now I pose the question to you.

I cannot fathom that the highest power in this universe could take Anna
Nicole from us and leave Hillary behind...

Thursday, March 08, 2007

American Politics

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

A Letter From Boot Camp

(...I'm busy with school, and tax season, so I barely have time to read the news, much less comment on it. So, for a little bit longer (tax season ends in April...thank God...), I'll be mostly sharing the fun that shows up in my email box. Well, kind of like this one...)


Dear Ma and Pa,

I am well. Hope you are. Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile. Tell them to join up quick before all of the places are filled.

I was restless at first because you got to stay in bed till nearly 6 a.m., but I am getting so I like to sleep late. Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot, and shine some things. No hogs to slop, feed to pitch, mash to mix, wood to split, fire to lay. Practically nothing.

Men got to shave but it is not so bad, there's warm water. Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, etc., but kind of weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried eggplant, pie and other regular food, but tell Walt and Elmer you can always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee. Their food plus yours holds you until noon when you get fed again. It's no wonder these city boys can't walk much.

We go on "route marches," which the platoon sergeant says are long walks to harden us. If he thinks so, it's not my place to tell him different. A "route march" is about as far as to our mailbox at home. Then the city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks.

The country is nice but awful flat. The sergeant is like a school teacher. He nags a lot. The Captain is like the school board. Majors and colonels just ride around and frown. They don't bother you none.

This next will kill Walt and Elmer with laughing. I keep getting medals for shooting. I don't know why. The bulls-eye is near as big as a chipmunk head and don't move, and it ain't shooting at you like the Higgett boys at home. All you got to do is lie there all comfortable and hit it. You don't even load your own cartridges. They come in boxes.

Then we have what they call hand-to-hand combat training. You get to wrestle with them city boys. I have to be real careful though, they break real easy. It ain't like fighting with that ole bull at home. I'm about the best they got in this except for that Tug Jordan from over in Silver Lake I only beat him once. He joined up the same time as me, but I'm only 5'6" and 130 pounds and he's 6'8" and near 300 pounds dry.

Be sure to tell Walt and Elmer to hurry and join before other fellers get
onto this setup and come stampeding in.

Your loving daughter,

03/07 Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Soldier Was Suggested By SJ Reidhead

Cpl. Jennifer Parcell
Cpl. Jennifer Parcell
20 years old from Bel Air, Maryland
Combat Logistics Regiment 3, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force
February 7, 2007

Cpl. Jennifer Parcell was petite, but one learned quickly that underestimating her was foolish.

"She was an absolute firecracker," Master Sgt. Jerry Widner said. "Just a go-getting machine."

Her relentless can-do attitude led her to volunteer for Iraq. And then to volunteer for the Lioness Program, which provides female Marines for searches of Iraqi women to respect Muslim cultural mores.

Parcell was killed Feb. 7 in Anbar province when a woman she was searching blew herself up with a suicide vest. Parcell had started doing the searches a week before and was three weeks from going home.

You can read the rest of Cpl. Jennifer Parcell's story here.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

03/04 Morning Report

I think the Taliban and Iraqi insurgent forces have learned more lessons from the Viet Cong. Putting US and NATO forces in the position of not knowing who to trust has caused more civilian deaths. How well those tactics have succeeded is summed up in this:

After a suicide attack by an explosives-filled minivan, the Americans treated every car and person along the highway as a potential attacker, though none of the people showed hostile intent, said Mohammad Khan Katawazi, the district chief of Shinwar.
Unfortunately, when only one side wears uniforms—your own-- it’s easy to get trapped into that behavior.

By the way, want to know what Muslim extremists think? Well there are two good examples.
First, according to Chechnyan President Ramzan Kadyrov, ”if you’re a leader, people fear you”.
(…maybe someone should tell that to the Democrats?...)

Second, there is Iran, who once again proved the UN does not care if they get thumbed in the nose. It seems UN leaders cannot agree on sanctions against Iran for nuclear stone walling.
(…must be nice to be able to say what you want…and do what you want…and get away with it…how come America can’t do that in the UN?...)

And, in case you were wondering just how much Iran and the Saudis distrust each other, they have agreed to keep Muslim ranks unified. It should be interesting to see that happen between Shiite and Sunni factions. They are already tearing each other apart in Lebanon, Iraq, and among the Palestinians. And each of these nations is fueling the fight, one way or another.
(…somehow…that’s supposed to make sense…to someone…maybe the Muslims get it…that’s why they are so unified…right?...)

By the way, if you think our annual defense budget increases are big? Take a look at what China announced! Their defense spending will jump almost 18% next year.
Jiang said most of the money would be spent on boosting wages and living allowances for the 2.5 million-member People's Liberation Army, and on upgrading armaments.
(…at least all of theirs are home…putting down dissenters and tyrannizing the populace…I wonder what the liberals would do if our military was used like that…and how come the liberals aren’t doing this about the Chinese…and the Russians…and…oh, never mind…)

Give peace a chance was a favorite slogan of American peace activists back in the 60s and 70s. Considering all the violence that ensued between leftists then and American authorites, should anyone be that surprised at the Danish riots? It could be these guys are taking lessons from the Muslims in Iraq…
Police said they arrested about 100 activists in raids on houses, schools and hostels. About half were foreigners who police said would be expelled.
Defying the courts, leftists have occupied a building that was sold to Christian fundamentalists, and even resorted to using molotov cocktails to ward off police.
(…really makes you believe their interested in peace…as opposed to…say…forcing everyone to give them what they want…hhhmmm…can you say “Chavez”?...)

Friday, March 02, 2007

03/02 Morning Report

Between going back to school and working through tax season in the financial industry, I have had zero time lately for writing. So here are a few unrelated thoughts on recent news items…)

The Army relieved Maj. Gen. George W. Weightman of command for mismanagement.

The Army and the Defense Department launched a series of investigations after The Washington Post published a series of stories last week that documented problems in soldiers' housing and in the medical bureaucracy at Walter Reed, which has been called the Army's premier caregiver for soldiers wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan.
If it really is his fault, he deserves to be relieved. I’ll bet a lot of it was going on long before he got to that position. Of course, Obama is quick to blame the administration. But, no one seems to mention that this is a recurring problem. It occurred to Vietnam Vets (aka Agent Orange issues), and Gulf I veterans.
(…dare I say that both of those problems were continued under Democratic Presidents…)

Here’s a question for you. If the soldiers are found guilty of murder, will Muslim pressure cause the application of the death penalty? It’s not exactly a moot question. Given the amount of power Muslim groups now have in the media, that actually could happen.
(…I wonder if the Left would actually let themselves s be manipulated that far…)

Barring something really strange, I looks like it will be McCain vs. Guliani vying for the Republican Presidential nomination. And, despite their admitted media bias against consevative/Right Wing candidates, here is the BBCs candidate breakdown. And, just like the rest of us, they expect it to be Obama vs. Clinton for the Democrats.
(…personally, I suspect it will end up being Guliani vs. Clinton…)

In really strange news, did you know you can play ice hockey under water the ice? Check out this Reuters video if you don’t believe me.