Saturday, December 03, 2005

Last night at blue hill:
Ariela takes a phone call, I sit and stare into space. Suddenly she looks at me and covers the phone, "Jen, a lesbian just went in the bathroom, red hat." She returns to the conversation on the phone. "What?" I say. "Bathroom, red hat, go make friends." "I don't believe you." "Fine" she says "switch seats with me, and then we will see who is right and who is dead." So we switched seats. Girl walks out of the bathroom, red hat, "I stand corrected" I say. Ariela smirks.

Today is Friday, and for the first time, I'm wearing a T-shirt at work.

Here's the news roundup:
Bushie's speech at Annapolis
We've discussed this one already, basically he explained to a picked military crowd about his newly declassified Plan for Victory in Iraq. The plan seems to be, stay the course. Why this is newly declassified, or was ever classified remains beyond me. He argued that several battalions of Iraq soldiers were up and trained and would increasingly be able to "stand up" on their own. However, there has been nothing done about supply and logistical support for the Iraqis by Iraqis. Sure, the soldiers are trained to carry out counter-terrorism/counter insurgency (rebel fighting) but there is no infrastructure to back up the fighting units. Also, with the recent story that some of the soldiers have been involved in wild scale torture operations, the whole "stay the course" argument doesn't seem particularly reasonable. Bushy also wildly misstates the dems position that we should think about getting out of Iraq. Most dems agreet that we should exit Iraq in a controlled fashion and are agitating for reasonable measures that would signal our time to go, aka, not occupying Iraq indefinitely. Futhermore a meeting of Arab leaders, including Iraq issued a resolution stating they want US troops out as soon as possible. I read somewhere (sorry, no link) that 50% of Iraqis think it's understandable for the rebels (oops, terrorists) to target and attack US troops, while they occupy Iraqi soil. And Bush thinks that the violence will not subside if we leave. I think there is violence because we have overstayed. Train the army, get them equipped as soon as possible, and then get the hell out of their country. You cannot force a democratic state, a carbon copy of our own (do we have a democratic state?) in the space of a few years. The democracy must develop, it must try and fail, and then try again until it succeeds, we must allow for some error.

Fake articles in Iraqi papers
Articles written by US soldiers placed by a contractor, hired by the US government, in Iraqi papers. This is a complete perversion of journalistic ethics and democracy itself. One of the pillars of democracy is a free and strong press. The press cannot be free and strong if they take money to place articles (propaganda) in their newspapers. While Bushie tries to force Iraq into a democracy, they undermine their efforts by filling the "free" press with propaganda and threatening to bomb "free" new outlets (see comments on Al-Jazeera). Bushie and Co already discredited themselves (countless times, but specifically) when they released video news to the press w/o informing them that it originated at the White House and paying journalists to say good things about the White House, or it's policies.
The Duke's resignation

Speaking of corruption, House Rep Randy Cunningham admitted to taking over $2 million in bribes from defense contractors. After watching video of the Duke denying the allegations when they originally surfaced back in July, I wondered to Dan if he was so delusional that he believed that he did nothing wrong, or if he was just a flat out liar. Dan commented that getting illegal donations is pretty easy during a campaign, but the candidate doesn't know anything about it, usually it is the campaign manager that is guilty of impropriety, so maybe cash, the Duke wouldn't know about. But he was flat out getting stuff. How do you not know you are in the wrong if you accept random stuff from defense contractors? So we either have a hugely corrupt politician or a hugely stupid politician, which is worse?

Non Political News
France performs the world first face transplant
Ok, before you think that we have entered into the world of that great movie with John Travolta and Nicholas Cage, Face/Off, realize that the performed transplant was only a partial one. Oh, ok. Yeah, that calms my fear that people are going to be running around with different faces. Ok ok, maybe that's a little alarmist. It's not going to be that easy to get a face transplant. It would most like ly be only offered as a completely necessary operation for people with severe disfigurement for whatever reason. But that doesn't meant that some unscrupulous surgeons won't perform the operation electively. And it doesn't mean that people won't clamor for the operation. Many people are unhappy with their bodies, many will readily tell you which body part they hate and the changes they would make if the could. Just look at the explosion of cosmetic surgery. Is it so hard to love the body you're in?

New TSA guidlines.
Apparently you are now going to be allowed to bring nail clippers and small scissors aboard planes. It seems that searching for these small (relatively non-lethal) devices took too much of the airport screeners time and they were missing things like large knives and other dangerous items. Personally, I think that the prohibition against scissors, nail clippers, nail files, small pocket knives and so on and so forth was completely ridiculous from the start. Sure, ban larger knives, razor sharp objects, like box cutters (not your standard diposible razor from your shaving kit), and guns, but leave the smaller crap alone. The truth is that almost any everyday item can become a weapon, your belt becomes a garrote, break a cd in half and you have two knife like objects, hit someone over the head with a book, or a heavy piece of luggage. Anyone remember the fly naked and safe airline (I don't remember if it every got off the to speak), you weren't even safe there, a fist is a weapon, a finger, a knee. There is no 100% safe way to fly, or do anything, it's a chance you take when you step out of your house. The only thing that you have to rely on is your own wits and the goodwill of the people around you.

Univeristy creationism class cancelled
Ok, the fact that a University was going to offer a class discussing creationism is admirable- discussing it in the context of modern mythology, not as a science class. good, ok all good. however, the professor is a bonehead and managed to get his class cancelled because he emailed the a student organization referring to the fundamentalist group as "fundies" and that the course depicting intelligent design as mythology would be a "nice slap in their big fat face." He said this. In an email. And now his class is cancelled. This reminds me of when the SWA sent an email to Faculty Senate Chair Linda Pike regarding their intentions to hunger strike and she sent a one word reply, "starve." Way to go boneheaded adults!

These stories a courtesy of Dan (all are safe for work):

Compliments of Ariela, please please please check this out, I sat at my desk and gasped and drooled. Specifically, anything in the design, lifestyle or gadgets sections. Oh god.

After I showed Karen the Luna Lounger at the aforementioned set, she exclaimed "That would be good for an orgy!" And then looked around as if someone might of heard her. "Karen!" I said "this is a professional office" giggle giggle.

For everyone that doesn't read the comments, this is compliments of Roko:

One hour and 32 minutes until I'm free for the weekend!


Blogger Ariela said...


i sound like a witty awesome person!

6:24 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home