Friday, June 30, 2006

Four Day Weekend...

Hope you have "buckets" of fun this four day weekend...

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Not Just A Piece Of Cloth

"I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it" - Voltaire

I'm not so sure I can whole-heartedly agree with Voltaire when it pertains to the issue of burning or desecration Old Glory.

It is an emblem of this nation. Not of a party or a belief but of the very nation itself. The destruction of a nation's symbols is not a trivial thing. It is an aggressive act, an expression of hatred for that nation and what that nation represents.

You are attacking the very nation who is providing you with the freedom of speech to burn it's symbol in effigy. Seems ironic and ignorant to me.

Whatever your beliefs are, if you are an American have some respect for your country, what it stands for, and it's symbols. Are you that incapable of rational, adult thought, and debate that you must draw attention away from the fact that you have nothing real to say by creating a fire?

I have fought for this nation, under the flag who's glory is so strong that only it is fitting to drape the coffin of our heroes, and only it carries enough respect to be given to their family members.

I have had the unfortunate honor to escort a good friend home and made sure that the banner was always affixed whenever the casket was moved and was there to present the folded flag to his mother while the gratitude of a nation were expressed.

The flag desecration amendment failed by one vote.

I can't agree that a constitutional amendment is necessary to ban desecration of the flag.

To me it's just common sense.

Choose a different way to express your freedom of speech.

Especially around me.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

How Quickly They Forgot

OK, last thing about the New York Times today...

Someone at Free Republic tracked down a New York Times editorial that appeared just thirteen days after 9/11.

You'll be surprised at some of the things the editorial calls for with regard to fighting terrorism by tracking financial transactions.

It is sad how, for many on the left (including the editorial staff at the Times), the war against terror has more and more taken a back seat to the war against Bush the further we get from that tragic day in September.

Excuses From The Editor

Bill Keller, editor of that fine bird cage liner known as The New York Times, wrote a letter on his decision to publish classified information about the governments efforts to curtail terrorist funding.

Wizbang gives you the Reader's Digest version:

Dear Reader:

1) We have no reason to believe the program was illegal in any way.
2) We believe it was effective at catching terrorists.
3) We ran the story anyway, screw you.


In my humble opinion it's nothing more than self-serving, hypocritical, sanctimonious, and elitist lecturing at it's worst.
Not only does he put himself and the NYT above the law, but above the President, and then claims that it is his duty to know what is best, despite many who tried in vain to convince him otherwise. I am fairly certain that the list of whom can make decisions regarding national security do not include the editor of the New York Times.

It seems more and more that the NYT has chosen sides in the war. Sad to say it isn't ours.

This story in and of itself had no news value. Congressional and judicial oversight were already there. What is the story is that the New York Times was willing to expose and possibly end a perfectly legal and apparently effective spy program. If anyone were to show up at a US banking institution with more than $10,000 for deposit, the bank is required to get positive ID from that person to fill out a Currency Transaction Report that goes right to the government. This has been so since the early 1990's and increasing enforced since 9/11 with the origins going back to the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970. No doubt there is a hefty database of domestic transactions above $10,000 already owned by the government. So, while banking information isn't public, it sure isn't private and hasn't been for decades.

Awesome "scoop" there NYT! <---Insert sarcasm here. I realize us knuckle-draggers am to un-smart to know what is good for us, but... The bottom line is, that Bill Keller and the NYT took it upon themselves to decide what classified information the public and our enemies should know about. Bizarrely, he claims that the critical factors in his decision were whether the program was legal and had adequate safeguards even though, it was indeed legal and had extensive safeguards in place. Andrew McCarthy may have the real reason this was published... The NYT is just more important than we are.

Said With A Straight Face

This morning my lovely Season advised me that:

"Toast is better for you than bread"...

After my initial confusion at this random tidbit of information subsided my angst set in, and I just want to say:

Bread is the staff of the proletariat.
Toast is a decadent bourgeoisie luxury!

We regret any inconvenience this interruption may have caused, normal operation will resume as soon as possible.

Monday, June 26, 2006

OPSEC: It's Not For The NYT

The dynamic duo of Eric Lichtblau and James Risen have published the details of yet another classified national-security program.

This time, they exposed the workings of a database of financial records that the administration has used to track al Qaeda's banking transactions: The Bush administration has made no secret of its campaign to disrupt terrorist financing, and President Bush, Treasury officials and others have spoken publicly about those efforts. Administration officials, however, asked The New York Times not to publish this article, saying that disclosure of the Swift program could jeopardize its effectiveness (They might as well have asked al Qaeda to please stop killing civilians). They also enlisted several current and former officials, both Democrat and Republican, to vouch for its value.

Bill Keller, the newspaper's executive editor, said: "We have listened closely to the administration's arguments for withholding this information, and given them the most serious and respectful consideration. We remain convinced that the administration's extraordinary access to this vast repository of international financial data, however carefully targeted use of it may be, is a matter of public interest."

According to the NYT's own reporting, the program is legal. The program is helping us catch terrorists. The administration has briefed the appropriate members of Congress. The program has built-in safeguards to prevent abuse and yet, with nothing more than a vague appeal to the "public interest" (which apparently is not outweighed in this case by the public's interest in apprehending terrorists), the NYT disregards all that and publishes intimate, classified details about the program. Keller and his team really do believe they are above the law. I suppose when it comes to national security, it isn't the government that should decide when secrecy is essential to a program's effectiveness. It is the New York Times.

Both the leakers within our intelligence agencies and those publishing the leaks are jeopardizing national security, and are not just putting those who serve in uniform in danger, but civilians in Iraq, Afghanistan, and even here in the U.S. in harms way.

Why stop there?

Why not broadcast classified information on troop levels too?

Oh, you already got that covered...

The top American commander in Iraq has drafted a plan that projects sharp reductions in the United States military presence there by the end of 2007, with the first cuts coming this September, American officials say.

According to a classified briefing at the Pentagon this week by the commander, Gen. George W. Casey Jr., the number of American combat brigades in Iraq is projected to decrease to five or six from the current level of fourteen by December 2007.

General Casey's briefing has remained a closely held secret, and it was described by American officials who agreed to discuss the details only on condition of anonymity.

"Closely held secret." Not. Anymore. Way to go, NYT!

Publishing classified information during wartime...treasonous or just good reporting?

That's a rhetorical question.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Hundreds Of WMDs Found In Iraq

Gee, what a surprise. <---Insert sarcasm here. "The United States has found 500 chemical weapons in Iraq since 2003, and more weapons of mass destruction are likely to be uncovered, two Republican lawmakers said Wednesday".

Click here to read a portion of the declassified NGIC report.

This doesn't validate or justify the war in Iraq for me. I didn't need a huge WMD cache to do that, but hopefully this will go towards silencing some of the people that didn't believe that Saddam could possibly have hidden, and lied about his WMD program.

It's old news though, we've been finding smaller caches for some time now. I believe we have known of a handful of recovered chemical-weapons shells, but not as large a number as five hundred. That number has a lot more significance. An artillery battery could have laid down a very effective chemical attack with those rounds, quickly killing or disabling the enemy in a manner outlawed for decades.

Of course, that had been the entire point of the UN Security Council resolutions, to strip Saddam of that capability, and he obviously retained it, and lied about it. Possibly even moved a lot of it to a neighboring country like Syria.

However, I do wonder why the White House did not release this information at the time of their discovery. Could it be that there are some CIA personnel who have finally started leaking good news from Iraq in order to vindicate themselves and the President? Could it be that these caches had to be completely secured before disclosing information about them so as to not make them susceptible to terrorist attack? Is this strictly for political purposes? Isn't everything?

This information does change the picture about our pre-war intelligence though, lends it more credibility.

Perhaps in time for a possible confrontation with Iran?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Haditha: No Cover Up

Major General Eldon Bargewell, the general charged with investigating whether Marines tried to cover up the killing of twenty-four civilians in Haditha, has completed his report - nothing in the report points to a "knowing cover-up" of the facts by the officers supervising the Marines involved in the November incident.

The Los Angeles Times reports that Bargewell instead blames "faulty oversight" by low-level officers and command staff in Baghdad, who he says failed to demand a thorough explanation of what happened.

The Times reiterates that there’s no finding of a deliberate cover-up according to those who have seen the report. So, how to account for the "faulty oversight"? Could it be that the Corps is simply too busy with daily operations to go picking through the rubble of this incident? Most likely.

That's it so far - No evidence of a "knowing cover-up" of the incident.

No fanfare, nothing.

Perhaps someone should inform Representative John Murtha; most certainly he will want apologize to his Marine brothers for accusing them of a known cover-up.

Monday, June 19, 2006

It's Not Whether You Win or Lose...

In a recent interview Rep. John Murtha went on again that American troops were losing the war in Iraq, but Al Qaeda papers found by troops included a revealing document in which the terrorist group acknowledges its own "bleak situation" caused by losses on both the public relations and war fronts.

That's a strange contrast isn't it? Does that mean that Al Qaeda is giving U.S. troops more credit than Murtha is?

Murtha's not only full of insightful criticism, he's also got great ideas like re-deploying the troops in Iraq to Okinawa, Japan. Yeah, that should help in the war against radical Islamic terrorists. Deploy to Japan. Guess he didn't get the memo that we are already pulling out troops stationed in Okinawa to Guam. Is he senile?

The Democratic Representative and decorated veteran downplays the eradication of a terrorist that would still be going strong had we "pulled out immediately" as he suggested, tells the media, the world, and the terrorists that American forces are losing.

Yet, those actually on the ground in Iraq, Iraqi leadership, and even the terrorist organization itself seems to tell a different tale.

The documents seized in the weeks leading up to the 7 June 2006 killing of Abu Musab Zarqawi also have provided intelligence that has helped direct nearly five hundred allied combat operations and resulted in the killings of hundreds of insurgents, the U.S. command in Baghdad said yesterday.

Al Qaeda's acknowledged failures and the military offensive have been so successful that Iraq's national security adviser flatly predicted that Zarqawi's group, al Qaeda in Iraq, is at "the beginning of the end" and also predicts that "US troops could be out of Iraq by 2008."

The House on Friday voted 256-153 to back President Bush’s policies in Iraq after two days of passionate and partisan debate and there was Murtha again with a wonderful quote "We’ve become the enemy." Speak for yourself Congressman.

The left supposes that if we had just had “the right plan” the war would have been easy, cheap, quick, and clean. That is not an option. This is a guerrilla war, and no such war ever has been or ever will be easy, cheap, quick, or clean.

Winning and losing, is this vocabulary simply misplaced in reference to war? There are, after all, wars that are not actually won or lost. There are wars that achieve some of their goals, that result only in partial solutions and that leave much business unfinished, there are also wars that end ambivalently. There are wars that do not end with helicopters evacuating Americans from the embassy roof but that do not produce a victorious march into Berlin, either.

We may assist in creating the first truly democratic Arab regime, with independent media, real elections and a relatively liberal political culture. It is even possible, in the end, that we really will help bring into existence a new generation of democratic Arab reformers across the Middle East and that we will need to keep troops in the region for five decades to defend them. Would such an outcome mean the war was a "defeat"? Not necessarily. Would it mean the war was a "victory"? Not exactly.

The bottom line is that we will have to deal with radical Islamic terrorism until we defeat it. They do not want peace with us, they can't be reasoned with, they want to destroy us. This problem will not go away on its own. We have created a focal point for the battle now at the time and place of our choosing, in Iraq & Afghanistan.
"Win" or "lose" I believe this is a war of necessity.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Caption This...

It's "Caption This" Sunday again!
OK, it's said that a picture is worth a thousand words.
Test your wit and come up with a funny caption for this photo.
Here are a few to get you started...
  1. I've asked you five times...What time does the bus come by here?!?!?
  2. In the sea a city was written? Come on man, what does that even mean?!?!?
  3. Those are some really nice bronze shoes you got there...

Friday, June 16, 2006

Seriously Ya’ll!

Britney Spears had the perfect opportunity for an image makeover, but failed miserably.

I'm guessing she probably was in the middle of doing laundry, vacuuming the house, and playing with little K-Fed Junior when Matt Lauer unexpectedly showed up with a camera crew.

That's the only explanation I can think of for why her hair extensions looked as if they had been brushed with a rake, the giant glob of mascara on her right fake eyelash, her boobs cascading out of that bad fitting top with her bra sticking out of the side, denim micro mini-skirt, and plastic flip-flops, while she smacked chewing gum. Did it seem like her whole out fit came from the Anna Nicole Smith/Wal-Mart Trailer Trash collection? Girl looked like she had not showered in days. Did anybody else notice this poster on her wall too?

Sad. However, my sadness slowly dissipated with every air quote that Britney used as the interview progressed. At first, I counted the air quotes...I think I had gotten to about six or seven in the first half hour, but then I gave I was completely dumbfounded by her inability to answer Lauer's questions - not for avoidance's sake, but instead, apparently without the ability to formulate coherent and cogent responses...she would start off okay, but then ramble off into oblivion.

Here are some of the poignant questions:

On why she loves her husband: "He's so simple"

I don't think simple even begins to describe that bum K-Fed.

On why she was driving down the Pacific Coast Highway with her five month old son in her lap: "I did it with my dad. I'd sit on his lap and I drive. We're country."

Right...because you're backwoods, swamp ass daddy let Baby Britney drive on a dirt road; you should let your five month old drive on PCH, one of the most dangerous highways in California. And you said you're husband was simple...

On the cruel treatment of the paparazzi: "They like to have the person they pick on. I feel like I'm a target."

Well you sure didn't mind being a target when you put that "reality show" on TV where you filmed all your private moments and whored them out for a big pay day. Was it so awful then when you cashed their checks?

The soft-ball interview still had her breaking down on queue. It was worse than those interviews that Michael Jackson did to try to prove he wasn't a disturbed child molesting freak. Can anyone say back-fire?

Anyway, I hope the paparazzi leaves her alone soon, because clearly she is not giving them ANYTHING to take note of. Seriously ya'll.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Haditha: Murtha/Media VS. Marines

A criminal defense attorney for a Marine under investigation in the Haditha killings says he will call a senior Democratic congressman as a trial witness, if his client is charged, to find out who told the lawmaker that U.S. troops are guilty of cold-blooded murder.

Attorney Neal A. Puckett told The Washington Times that Gen. Michael Hagee, the Marine commandant, briefed Rep. John P. Murtha, Pennsylvania Democrat, on the Nov. 19 killings of twenty-four Iraqis in the town north of Baghdad. Mr. Murtha later told reporters that the Marines were guilty of killing the civilians in "cold blood." Mr. Murtha said he based his statement on Marine commanders, whom he did not identify.

The Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) is expected to finish its probe by August, at which time Lt. Gen. John F. Sattler, who commands the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force at Pendleton, will decide whether to bring charges or not.

If the NCIS has done a good job in this investigation, then Marine commanders will not feel compelled to charge these guys with homicide," Mr. Puckett said. "But since Congressman Murtha has already judged these guys in public and folks have alleged a Marine Corp cover-up, I'm afraid that the Marine Corps will feel compelled to put these guys on trial to prove the Marine Corps hasn't done anything wrong in terms of a cover-up.

Attorneys will also likely question the authenticity of a videotape at the heart of the case and the credibility of the group that provided it.

The Marines have always acknowledged that it was likely that some of those killed on that day may have been innocent civilians, but that others were certainly not. They radioed back with an ESTIMATE of the collateral damage. It was first reported as twelve to fifteen. This, in my book, does not a "cover-up" make.

It looks more and more like the Marines did their job and reacted to an attack as trained following the rules of engagement and did not conduct a "massacre" in "cold blood" as the left media in Iraq so vehemently reported.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Remember Those Worth Remembering

On September 11, 2006, 2,996 volunteer bloggers will join together for a tribute to the victims of 9/11. Each person will pay tribute to a single victim.

They will honored by remembering their lives, and not by remembering their murderers.

If you would like to help out, either by pledging to post a tribute on your own blog, or by offering your services to promote this cause, email D.Challener Roe at , or visit the web site and/or his blog and sign up by leaving a comment.

The goal is 2,995 blogging volunteers to help with a tribute to the victims of 9/11. If you’d like to participate, you’ll be assigned the name of someone who was murdered on September 11, 2001. Then on September 11, 2006 you’ll post your own tribute to that person. It can be anything you want it to be: a photo tribute, an essay, a remembrance, a poem…it’s up to you. Then link back to a page I will create which will give the names of all 2,996 victims and links to the blogs that will remember them that day.

But, and this is critical, he doesn't want any of us to remember the murderers. Do not refer to the terrorists. Or their organization. Or their goals. Let them fade into nothing. Let them be forgotten. Remember only those worth remembering.

I hope that this tribute works out, it seems like a wonderful idea.
I think the challenge will be in attempting to limit to only 2,995 volunteers once the word spreads. If you read this I urge you to please volunteer.

Thanks to my beautiful woman Season for the head's up on this and also to Teena on who's blog she first read about it.

Happy Birthday US Army & Happy Flag Day!

Since its inception on 14 June 1775, over a year before the Declaration of Independence, the United States Army has played a vital role in the growth and development of our nation. Soldiers have fought more than ten wars, from the American Revolution through the Cold War, the Gulf War, to the current War on Terrorism. This 231st Birthday is a recognition of The Army’s history, traditions, and service to the Nation, a Call To Duty, 231 Years of Service to Our Nation.

I have been proud to serve with 3/5 Cavalry Regiment, 4/64 Armored Regiment, 1/504 Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne), also had the privelage of being attached to some other extraordinary units who exemplify prestige, honor, and high esprit de corps to accomplish the mission at hand.

Today is also Flag Day! On 14 June 1777, The United States officially adopted the Stars and Stripes as the National Flag. For all United States citizens, this is an important patriotic event to remember and show respect for our flag.

I wish all Soldiers and Civilians throughout the Army, Happy 231st Birthday and Happy Flag Day to all!

Shouldn't this be a paid holiday for me or something? Sheesh!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

A Day Of Surprises

President Bush arrived in Baghdad today on a surprise visit to new Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and US troops.

Air Force One landed in hazy daylight at Baghdad Airport, where The President transferred to a helicopter for the six-minute ride to the green zone, a palace once used by Saddam Hussein which now serves temporarily as the U.S. Embassy.

They discussed the security, economic, and reconstruction strategy for Iraq. The President also said that it's not only in the interests of the Iraqi people, it's in the interests of the American people and for people who love freedom that Iraq succeeds. He said the message that he wants to send to the Iraqi government is "We stand with you. What you're doing is important."

Maliki has promised to crack down on sectarian violence, promote national reconciliation, and accelerate reconstruction efforts.

Also today White House aide Karl Rove has been told by prosecutors he won't be charged with any crimes in the investigation into the leak of a CIA officer's identity.

This New York Times article reports the announcement. The left seemed so positive that the Rove indictment was a forgone conclusion that they are going nuts. I don't think Karl Rove being cleared is necessarily good or bad news for America. But, for the left who were dreaming of the front page story with photo of Rove in handcuffs, this is a bad day.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Trademark Infringement

Look out here I come! Well, at least a hurricane named after me.

Hurricanes are named carefully. In the old days it was easy, all hurricanes were given women's names, hell hath no fury like a woman scorned and all. Then they changed it so men and women were equally represented. Now we have the first named storm of 2006, Alberto!

Top 10 Reasons Why They Named Hurricane Alberto After Me:

10. Can Be Very Annoying
9. Loves The Ocean
8. Wreaks Havoc When He Makes Landfall
7. Just Like A Good Cuban He Hangs Around The Florida Coast
6. Acts Like The Entire World Should Stop And Listen To Him
5. Has Trouble Deciding Which Direction To Go
4. Has The Potential To Be A Category Five But Keeps Procrastinating
3. Known To Break A lot Of Wind
2. Hurricanes Also Have A "Season"

And the #1 Reason Why They Named Hurricane Alberto After Me:

1. Can Make The Ladies Wet ;)

In all seriousness though, I hope my namesake fizzles out and doesn't cause any major damage. I'll be praying for all the folks in it's path.

Haditha: The Accused Speak

Read an account from a sergeant who led a squad of Marines during the incident in Haditha, Iraq in this Washington Post article.

There is also an interesting read over at The American Thinker (here's a link to Sweetness & Light) and another at Newsmax.

Greyhawk at The Mudville Gazette has a great post covering the other side of this story.

I can't hold my fire about this, if there are any individuals that deserve the benefit of the doubt, it's our troops fighting in Iraq. It seems that the Marines accused of the incident in Haditha have not been given that privilege. Some are determined to declare these Marines guilty without the conclusion of any official investigation. As The Post story establishes, however, this is hardly an open-and-shut case: the differing accounts of what happened in Haditha--from the Marines' to the Iraqis' to the various press reports--only further complicate what the public "knows" about this incident. It's unfortunate that some are not willing consider the details that contradict their agenda.

I hope theTRUTH does come out soon...

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Caption This...

It's "Caption This" Sunday again!
OK, it's said that a picture is worth a thousand words.
Test your wit and come up with a funny caption for this photo.
Here are a few to get you started...
  1. I'm not only the Chicharron-As-Hair Club President, I'm also a client!
  2. Although cauliflower ear can be prevented and treated, pork rind ear is still a medical mystery...
  3. Juan is a little odd, he collects his own ear wax...

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Army Meets Recruiting Goal, Again

Friday The Army reported it surpassed its recruiting goal for May, marking the 12th consecutive month of meeting or exceeding its target.

In other words, people are re-upping and enlisting knowing full well that they will be going back or to a combat zone.

I doubt we'll see or hear much about the good news about Army recruiting from the left. How come no headlines, NYTimes? If it is reported at all they are sure to say that the numbers were skewed somehow.

My thanks goes out to all fellow servicemen who take on the responsibility to protect and preserve us.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Karma Is A Bitch

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is dead. This animal who lived by the sword died by an airstrike north of Baghdad. Although there’s no question this is a milestone in the war there is still a lot to do. The difficult and necessary mission in Iraq continues. I hope that his death will help to quell sectarian violence in Iraq and disrupt the formation of terror networks in Europe though. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

But, ummm...did anyone else think it was weird they way the photo of his head was displayed? War trophy and other rhetoric aside...What was up with that? Is there a 24-hour Baghdad version of Kinko's? Is there a "MAFS"(Mobile Army Framing Shop) unit out in the desert? Was is done by a crafty PSYOP unit? Voodoo six...fess up!

Attention in the TOC! Sgt. Snuffy! Front and center! We need a buffered, acid-free white mat and a can of adhesive spray ASAP! I know it's 0300! We've got ourselves a majorly DOA hostile, son, and a press conference at 06:00. Now, get me some goddamn picture wire, tasteful antique gold molding, and cut some non-glare glass in a 30x30 square on the double, soldier!

Anyway, even the great news of the death of this terrorist bastard can't be ruined by the left crying "It makes no difference"...let's look at some other positive hapenings in Iraq. The seating of a full and sovereign national unity government with representation of all major sects. The Iraqis have successfully navigated the swamp of partisan politics to elect a government that the vast majority of Iraqis accept. I hope that this points to an increasing quality of life for all Iraqis.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Save The Cones!

The origin of the modern Traffic Cone is a mystery that has perplexed researchers for decades.

Theories abound of divine intervention and alien master plans, but there is little concrete evidence to support such claims.

The Traffic Cone; or to use it's binomial nomenclature "Conus trafficus" (Conus for short); share few similarities between any other living species today, leading scientists to believe that it diverged from the evolutionary tree quite early. Its flat foot, distinctive cone-shaped body, and lack of appendages evolved for reasons not entirely known, but widely speculated.

During prehistoric times Conus traveled in packs to avoid predation. It was then that cones began to exhibit the altruistic tendencies they still possess today. It appears that cones would gather near hazards such as tar pits and quicksand to warn others of these dangers. This behavior preserved members of their herd, and allowed the species to prosper. Other creatures learned to take advantage of these warnings too, and avoided cones instead of eating them.

Modern times and especially "The Automobile Age" was a time of profound and rapid change for Conus. Burgeoning road construction attracted cones, and most left the valleys and the fields to live on the new roads. They flocked to construction work sites, potholes, and other road hazards. Unfortunately, these new environs did not favor all cones. Species of grey and black cones that had previously flourished were rendered almost extinct, as automobiles were much less likely to see them upon the asphalt. Nature began to favor only the brightest and most visible of cones, which tended to be red, yellow, and orange, and even some species of blue.

Conus may very well be one of the most diverse creatures ever documented.

The most recent evolutionary adaptation is the "Reflective Stripe". This feature increases the visibility of cones at night. Whether this evolutionary adaptation will threaten the dominance of the Orange Cone is yet to be seen...

As you have read the Traffic Cone is a remarkably adaptable creature, but nonetheless it is a creature in jeopardy of becoming extinct.

You can do something about it by joining the Traffic Cone Preservation Society and allow future generations the opportunity to enjoy these magnificent creatures in their natural habitats.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Sympathy, For The Devil? Nope...

06/06/06 today's date has significance of Biblical proportions, but the day seems to have been as uneventful as Y2K was...

What you didn't hear a lot about was that it was the sixty-second anniversary of D-Day.
On June 6, 1944, a date known ever since as D-Day, a mighty armada crossed a narrow strip of sea from England to Normandy, France, and cracked the Nazi grip on western Europe.

The invasion focused on five beaches code-named Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword on the coast of Normandy, France.

On D-Day, the Allies landed approximately 156,000 troops in Normandy. The American forces landed numbered 73,000: 23,250 on Utah Beach, 34,250 on Omaha Beach, and 15,500 Airborne troops. In the British and Canadian sector, 83,115 troops were landed (61,715 of them British): 24,970 on Gold Beach, 21,400 on Juno Beach, 28,845 on Sword Beach, and 7900 Airborne troops.

The breakdown of US casualties was 1465 dead, 3184 wounded, 1928 missing and 26 captured. Of the total US figure, 2499 casualties were from the US airborne troops (238 of them being deaths). The casualties at Utah Beach were relatively lighter: 197, including 60 missing. However, the US 1st and 29th Divisions together suffered around 2000 casualties at Omaha Beach.

So, I'd like to remember those who did their part then and those that are also doing it now and pray for the safekeeping of all.

If the antichrist was born or came into power today, she can kiss my ass. I'll pray for her too.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Caption This...

OK, it's said that a picture is worth a thousand words.
Test your wit and come up with a funny caption for this photo.

Here are a few to get you started...

  1. The slogan is supposed to be "Blue Sky Aviation, fly with pride", not fly with THE Pride!
  2. Ladies and gentleman, boarding for the flight to Mozambique will be slightly delayed...
  3. We've got to stop serving gazelle as the in-flight meal...

Saturday, June 03, 2006


In many states, anyone convicted of a felony ("Crimes which are commonly considered to be felonies include, but are not limited to: aggravated assault, arson, burglary, murder, and rape") must wait until they have completed their prison sentence, parole and/or probation before they can vote. Rhode Island; among a few other states; is looking to change that law and make it so felons can vote as soon as their prison sentence is completed...

Under current Rhode Island law, convicted felons can't vote until they have completed parole and probation, a date thirty years away for convicted felon Andres Idarraga. So he is speaking out to support a state ballot initiative in November that would allow felons to vote after they leave prison.

Its passage would "send a message that we're willing to embrace you, to afford second chances, instead of every step along the way putting up roadblocks," he says.

Rhode Island is one of several states where lawmakers and advocacy groups are working to change laws that deny many felons the right to vote.

You know your party is desperate when you’re looking to the prison vote...

An estimated 5.3 million people cannot vote because of a felony conviction, says Ryan King, policy analyst for the Sentencing Project, a research group that favors changes in prison and sentencing rules. Thirty-six states deny that right to felons while they're on parole, and thirty-one of them also bar voting by felons on probation.

King and other advocates of changing those rules say the restrictions punish people who have served their time and disproportionately affect the poor and people of color. "In states where there are 20% to 30% of African-Americans who are prohibited from voting, that's a significant portion of the population not being represented by their state or federal legislators," King says."

Some lawmakers believe the restrictions should stay in place. "I don't believe we need to have a voting bloc that comes out of prison angry at the sheriff's department ... and angry at the prosecutor's office," says Tennessee State Rep. Gerald McCormick, a Chattanooga Republican. "I don't think its right to have them on the same level as people who've paid their taxes and played by the rules."

I have a hard time believing that convicted felons are the kind of people that are running out to vote anyway, they're too busy committing crimes. But, what do you think? Disenfranchisement (say it three times fast) or an appropriate punishment?

See what the voting restrictions are in your state.

Thursday, June 01, 2006


I've been following this story for some time now...

Recently, Martin Terrazas, father of Lance Corporal Miguel Terrazas, the Marine killed in the IED attack in Haditha speaks out about the alleged incident:

Exactly what happened that day remains unclear. Miguel Terrazas’ father, Martin, said the Marines his son fought with told him that after the car bomb exploded the Marines took a defensive position around his son’s battered vehicle. Insurgents immediately started shooting from nearby buildings, and the insurgents were using women and children as human shields, Martin said he was told.

The Marines shot back because “it was going to be them or” the insurgents, Martin said of what his son’s fellow Marines briefly described to him.

“It’s very hard for me, I don’t even listen to the news,” Terrazas said of reports of the mass killings.

Marine officials initially gave the same story, that 15 civilians were killed Nov. 19 in the explosion and a subsequent firefight that also killed eight insurgents. Several months later Time magazine and then Arab television stations obtained a videotape of the scene, showing the bodies of women and children. The video, Iraqis’ accounts of the day and other emerging details sparked a criminal investigation.

Terrazas said he has met with many from his son’s unit who told him they did only what was necessary to survive. He wouldn’t say when he spoke with them.

“Those Marines just did their job,” he said. “Some of these kids were saying, ‘We have to live with it’.”

Former Marine Luis Terrazas, Miguel’s uncle, said Marines are trained to stay cool under pressure. “Jarheads don’t just go out and kill because they get frustrated,” Luis Terrazas said. “Their training is exquisite. It just doesn’t make sense.”

Please note the “Iraqis’ accounts.” Let’s see, if I have to choose who I’m going to believe, since I’m not involved with the actual investigation and only have media reports to go from, I’ll believe the Marines loooooong before I’ll believe the Iraqis from Haditha. As I’ve said before, nobody–not Time magazine, not Murtha, not the New York Times, and not the Arab media–nobody knows what actually happened except those who were present. Even the young Marine, Lance Cpl James Crossan, who was injured in the IED attack that killed Lance Cpl Terrazas, doesn’t know–he didn’t even know about it until February, and even then just from the media reports.

To the “antiwar” left who hold this ALLEGED incident up as somehow symbolic: you make me sick. For all you or any of us know, those Marines may have been totally justified in their actions, as Martin Terrazas’ commentary might indicate. Until there has been a complete investigation and disposition of the case, I would certainly rather err on the side of "innocent until proven guilty" rather than vice-versa. The soldiers in Iraq are risking their lives for us; I have tremendous respect, admiration, and appreciation for them and what they are doing. So, before you start holding this up as something to wave your “antiwar” flags over lets get the facts straight. You were wrong about Ilario Pantano. You were wrong about Newsweek’s “Koran flushing” story. But that doesn’t matter, does it? Because if you can turn public opinion towards your point of view; regardless of American lives at stake; that’s all that matters, right?

“All it does is make our jobs harder out here,” said Capt. Andrew Del Gaudio, commander of Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment. “Every Iraqi will assume Marines will act like that. It’s a perception that in this part of the world is hard to overcome.”

War is hell. Civilian casualties sometimes do occur.

Worse, they might have even been authorized by your very government...anyone recall Hiroshima or Nagasaki?

For those of you who will mistakely read into this that I condone executing innocent civilians: Try this for further explanation; it may help you understand.

I certainly don't condone military attacks on civilians in any way, shape, or form and I'm not saying something terrible didn't happen in Haditha. But, given the town's history, I'm also unprepared to accept that some don't want to make as much of this as they can for propaganda purposes. I hope the military gets the report out soon, no matter how bad. Everyone deserves to know the full truth.