Thursday, November 30, 2006

Dear President Ahmadinejad

I just want you to know that after carefully adjusting my printer to accept special paper worthy of your missive, I took it with me into my reading room to give it the attention it deserved.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Just Too Cool

Whatever your music mood, Musicovery has it covered. Wow.

Works and Days: So Close, so Far

The estimable Victor Davis Hanson once again explains the stakes. Excellent commentary in the comments section, particularly William J. Simmons and the Anonymous comment immediately following.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Find the Cost of Freedom

One of the most powerful and haunting songs by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young is "Find the Cost of Freedom." It's sung acapella; the first time in unision, the second time in soaring CSNY harmony. The lyric is simple:

Find the cost of freedom
buried in the ground
Mother Earth will swallow you
Lay your body down.

We've seen the stickers and t-shirts that read, "Freedom Isn't Free." But what does it cost? Dr. Phil O'Connor, writing at TCS Daily, tells us that from the first shot at Lexington on 1775 up to that sunny September morning in 2001, the average daily military fatality rate was 14.6. This figure of course includes the horrific tolls from the Revolution, the Civil War, both World Wars, Korea, and Vietnam.

From the Revolution through the War of 1812, the Civil War and the Spanish-American war, the rate was about 11 per day.

The rate during the Cold War - from the end of WW2 to the collapse of the USSR - was 6.6 military deaths per day. This includes Korea and Vietnam.

Since 9/11, the average military daily fatality rate has been 1.7.

Freedom isn't free. It never has been, and it never will be. But it's been getting steadily less expensive. Are we still willing to pay the price?

ht: Instapundit

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Thompson / Huckabee - You heard it here first

Tommy Thompson declares for 2008 race

Midwestern grocer's son, successful governor, welfare reformer who fought AIDS in Africa, plus a young, popular Southern fellow...

Could work.

From the 'This can't be good' dept...

Siberian bears can't get to sleep - it's too warm.

Okay. Let's just accept that global warming is real. Whether or not it's caused by humans is at this point largely irrelevant.

The question now is, what can we do? Not to stop it, but to cope with it?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Happy Veteran's Day, and Thank You!

I'm not a vet. In 1985 (when I tried to join) the USAF had no use for a four-eyed flat-footed asthmatic. Probably still doesn't.

But my dad and all my uncles (along with most men of their generation) are vets. So are some younger folks of my passing acquaintance.

Their sacrifices - and the sacrifices that continue to be made by the young men and women today who voluntarily don the uniform of this nation - are not taken in vain.

If you're a vet, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. My children sleep peacefully tonight because you stood - and still stand - watch against their enemies. May God bless the men and women of the United States Armed Forces.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Here we go again

Another round of tit-for-tat in Gaza. Palestinians fire rockets indiscriminately at Israeli civilians. These are the same guys who blow up falafel stands and restaurants with nail bombs.

So the Israelis lob some shells at the rocket launch site. Unfortunately, the shells go way off-target and kill a dozen or so Palestinian civilians. Predictably, thousands march in the streets and demand revenge.

Why is it called "asymetric warfare" and "resistance" when Palistinians deliberately kill Israeli civilians, but an "outrage" and a "massacre" when Israelis accidently kill Palestinian civilians?

Do the Palestinians not understand that if they want peace, all they have to do is stop killing Jews? Of course they do.

It's just that they don't want peace nearly as much as they want dead Jews.


Lileks. RTWT. Just. Do. It.

And eighteen months hence come back, read it again, and ask if he was right.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Quite the day

As the President just said, individually the races were close, but overall it was a thumpin'. And now Rumsfeld is out, to be replaced by the head of Texas A&M University, my alma mater. Hoo boy, the Aggie jokes are gonna start flying.

There were two things the President said that really impressed me. One was when a reporter quoted some of Nancy Pelosi's very nasty statements and questioned whether he could work with someone who had such distain for him. He replied, "I know when the campaign ends and the governing begins."

The other was in response to a couple of questions about a provate meeting last week with a couple of reporters, in which the President gave no hint that he was considering replacing Rumsfeld. He said, "I don't want our troops to think that I'm making decisions of military policy and leadership based on a political campaign."

Very Presidential.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

He's Baa-aack!

Bill Whittle, my favorite atheist, has another long-form essay up at Eject! Eject! Eject!

As Glenn says: RTWT.

Sunday, November 05, 2006


Hey-yo. It's been a week or so. I've just been busy. Work, family, doing a bit of recording, a bit of GOTV volunteering, that sort of thing. (Plus, the new Google toolbar makes it less convenient to blog news stories. Silly Google.)

The Sunday paper said that our embattled two-term senator has moved to within six points of his far-left challenger. Good news; he'd been writen off. Four points is the usual margin of error, and GOTV has often made up the difference. I suspect we'll lose the governor's race, but in the short-to-medium term it's the House and Senate that matter.

I logged on, walked the streets, knocked on doors, talked to my neighbors. Not as many as I'd like, but I plan to make calls tomorrow to the folks I missed today.