Archive for May, 2005

Memorial Day

Friday, May 27th, 2005

I’ll try posting a photo and a bit of connected email from 2 years ago in Iraq. It has been 2 years already since we liberated Iraq from Saddam. We’re still very much engaged in realizing that liberation with a self-sustaining Iraqi society that will be able to resist/coopt/modulate internal strife/scheming. (Oh I like this Tiger OS! Lousy speller so I clicked on the dictionary widget in the Dashboard and checked “scheming.”)

Changing theme, changing weather

Friday, May 27th, 2005

Upgraded my laptop operating system to Tiger (Mac OS 10.4), with some very cool additions and upgrades. Love the new RSS enabled Safari. But lots of breakage from older software. I decided to compound my chances of a visit from Murphy by upgrading my weblog software too… resulting in complete failure for two days. So now I’ve sorted it out.

I’ll stick for a bit with the new theme and then look to rotate in photos with short tag lines in the header.

Stepped outside and smelled moisure in the air. You really notice it here in the high desert — so dry normally. Dry lightening flashing silently in the distance. I told my barber (a bit of a conceit, I’ve not visited him that often but he’s cut my hair more often than anyone else in the past year) Arizona grows on you and he agreed.

Cold War II?

Wednesday, May 11th, 2005

Another interesting Kaplan piece in The Atlantic Monthly. This on a new Cold War with China. Kaplan clearly does not like George Bush’s crusade, uh jihad(?), campaign for democracy. Insists that the only strategy is to contain China by doing deals with the neighbors, even if unsavory. I am bemused by writers, even ones as well travelled as Kaplan, leaving the second largest country in the world out of discussions about checking China’s ambitions. As if the world’s largest democracy isn’t affected by it’s autocratic neighbor’s behavior. Why not expect India to be a significant counterweight to China? The sea lanes China would dominate concern India as well. Reinforcing democracy is not incompatable with balancing and containing China. Kaplan makes the briefest mention of India in the context of joint military training, but much less so than Singapore! Puzzling. Still, a good article on military strategy and equipment implications of emerging security concerns.

Secularist blinders

Sunday, May 1st, 2005

Found an NYT review of a new book* about John Brown with the following conclusion:

In our own time, some America-hating leftists may claim to discern equivalent evils in continuing racial oppression, economic exploitation, environmental predation or widespread torture by evil Amerikan imperialist mercenaries. To them, John Brown, Abolitionist, for all its wealth of detail and scrupulous attempts at balance, has a shockingly simple message: Far better to have future generations complain about your methods than condemn you for doing nothing.

The reviewer, Barbara Ehrenreich, most recently wrote Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, which would explain the bizarre omission of the most obvious “equivalent evil.” Its obviousness and the victim status of its subjects is obviated by the reviewer writing over this evil with a leftist approved list of evils. We all know why abortion and euthanasia and the pro-life movement, radical religionists, are not connected here to the original Radical Republicans and their religious foundation.

The Man Who Killed Slavery, Sparked the Civil War, and Seeded Civil Rights.

By David S. Reynolds.
Alfred A. Knopf.