Reasonably Ascertainable Reality

Thoughts and musings on current events and other random occurrences.

Location: South Jersey, United States

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Do you feel lucky punk?

Scene: idyllic Southern New Jersey suburban street
Time: unknown
Who: aforementioned punk

Well, the other day I found out an interesting little tidbit of information. My sister, who lives approximately 1 1/2 blocks from me, in the town we grew up in, had her car shot in front of her house. A 9mm shell casing was found and the bullet was found lodged in her dashboard. Now, the town I live in is a small town, formerly hick-like, now somewhat bustling. Shot, I tell you...SHOT! Its been a tough month for my sister. First, she gets hit on in the most pretenious, unforgiveable, yuppie, wannabe important, most likely compensating for small anatomical parts, way...and now this!
I hesitate to actually think about this and come up with the numerous nightmares that I can construct in my head to scare the crap out of me as I'm laying in bed at night. But in reality, it is probably some dumb shit kid with daddy's gun acting like an idiot. While I do believe in gun control, I also believe in everyone's right to own a gun. Please, parents, adults, gun-owners...lock them up. Its not too hard and can save lives!

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

A note...on the dying NBA

I have only this to say...
someone tell Kobe Bryant to shut the hell up.
I really used to think highly of him. But now, after the sex scandal, the complaining, the loss of Shaq and Jackson, and now..Malone is hitting on his wife and he is discussing it in the press.
Shut the Hell up Kobe. If the NBA was on life support, you just pulled the plug.

My heart is sad...if sad means happy...

While I hate to find happiness in other people's sorrow, I couldn't help but chuckle today for the thousands of Eagles fans left in total and complete misery today.
While I'm not an Eagles fan, I am a Giant's fan, I feel for you guys. While I have enjoyed the pure bliss of the highest successes...twice (in my lifetime)...the Eagles fans are still waiting.
And to get that pure bliss, they sold their souls to T.O. --and boy did he come through. As if the road to the Super Bowl wouldn't be hard enough this year. Strike that, the road to the Super Bowl is going to be easy for the Eagles this year--but getting a win, while a long shot with T.O, is now the equivalent of me kicking a 52 yarder in Lambeau during the next ice bowl to win the game.
I feel for McNabb and all the other decent Eagles fans out there. McNabb is a class guy and a great quarterback. He gets a little less attention in the era of Manning, but that is just bad timing. No one gets attention when history is being made. But to get that Super Bowl, Eagles fans had to lower themselves to rooting for a guy like T.O--and they did it--and now, he's gone, leaving any hope they had of beating whoever makes it out of the Pittsburgh, New England, Indianapolis fray blowing in the wind. Now, nothing left for you but a fools chance, souls burning in bad sportsmanship hell, and waiting until next year. Its kind of sad..
But then again...I'm not an Eagles rejoice!!


Today, the Bull Moose tears Time's Person of the Year down a notch. The money quote:

The late Senator Roman Hruska (R-NE) anticipated the Presidency of George W. Bush. Senator Hruska gained immortality with an observation he made in response to President Nixon's nomination of G. Harold Carswell to the Supreme Court. Hruska defended the controversial choice this way, "Even if he was mediocre, there are a lot of mediocre judges and people and lawyers," Hruska declared. "They are entitled to a little representation, aren't they, and a little chance? We can't have all Brandeises and Cardozos and Frankfurters and stuff like that there." That comment came to the Moose's mind with the announcement that W. is Time's Person of the Year. The President has done so much, with so little. George W. Bush is an inarticulate, incurious, unaccomplished man who has been re-elected to the most powerful office in the world despite relatively low approval ratings. He is the blameless beneficiary of South Carolina and swift boat slime while he casts himself as a compassionate conservative. His primary domestic acomplishments are turning surpluses into deficits and redistributing wealth to the comfortable. He is the Mr. Magoo of American politics who has presided over a war that was based on a premise that was wrong and a post-war period that has proven to be disastrous. He eschews all responsibility and admits no wrong. He is America's chief beneficiary of the soft bigotry of low expectations. George W. Bush is Time's Person of the Year. He is the Hruska Mediocrity of the Century.

He says it better than I can. Bush is, and has always been, allowed to exist above the fray that works on his behalf. His stubborness has been viewed as resolute-ness, his inability to take responsibility as been construed as his 'vision'. I hope and pray the next four years will be better, but in actuality, I have no hope.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

Too little...too F'ing late!

You know what really chaps my ass? Let me tell you. People like Bill Kristol. How dare you start now to criticize Rumsfeld! You self-serving partisan ass! So now...all of the sudden..Rumsfeld isn't up to snuff for you righties..but he was just fine before the election. I'm not saying that if you thought Rumsfeld was junk before the election, that your vote would have changed. But now, you start criticizing him because its safe, because GW has won the election? Your fake, half-hearted attempt at moral outrage or even a calm contempt rings so hollow it has an echo. And I have to put one of my favorites in this category too...John McCain. You all did nothing but praise the war...the reasons for the war (even though they weren't the reasons we were told), the planning of the war...the 'mission accomplished', the post-war that GW could get re-elected. It was all a massive success. Now, one month later, Rumsfeld is an 'arrogant buck-passer'. Now there is no 'confidence' in him as a leader. NOW we 'deserve a better defense secretary'????
Please! There is only one reason Rumsfeld is still Secretary of Defense...he hasn't been fired. But who on earth is going to fire him?? That would take a monumental effort of good judgement on GW's part. I'm not sure if he has it in him.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Join the club...

Today, John McCain is the latest to have no confidence in Rumsfeld. All I have to say is...join the club. Its pretty bad when even Republicans (allbeit moderate) don't have confidence in your leadership abilities. McCain takes issue with troop levels. How long will the President continue to feel heat over Rumsfeld and how long will he let it last? I guess only time will tell.

Friday, December 10, 2004

Someone smack him...

Well, everyone is up in arms on both sides of the fence over the 'town hall' meeting with Rumsfeld and the GI's in Kuwait. And now the right is frothing at the mouth that the much publicized question on lack of armor for vehicles was 'planted' by a journalist. For me, I don't see how that makes a difference. I'm fairly sure that the soldier who asked the question would not have asked it if he didn't believe in what he was asking. And I think I can say with certainty that the reporter did not 'plant' the applause and cheers that followed up that question from the more than 2,000 troops at the meeting. If you continue to watch the meeting, another soldier asks about the stop/loss program. Was that another 'plant'?
So what does all this tell us? The soldiers in the Middle East are worried and concerned about the same things that we are worried and concerned about over here. And they want answers! And what does Rummy offer them? That they go to war with the Army they have, not the Army they wish to have. Pretty lame if you ask me. A pre-meditated invasion of Iraq deserves a bit more planning, I would think. And before all you righties start criticizing the 'mainstream media' again, take note that GW would have asked the same question:
"We expect our troops to have the best possible equipment," he said. "And if I were a soldier overseas wanting to defend my country, I'd want to ask the secretary of defense the same question."
Only problem is, he should already know the answer.
Of all the cabinet defections and resignations, still standing is the only man who was deserving of being fired. Rumsfeld. He takes responsibility for nothing. If you listen to his quotes or answers to questions: Whats up with troop levels? His input consists of what the generals in the field tell him. Armor? We're trying. Abu Ghraib? Low level soldiers who are being punished as we speak. Heck, I say cut out the middle man. If he is just listening to everyone else...why do we need him? He is without one ounce of leadership qualities and he has yet to take responsibility for any of the mess over there. Even if you believe in the war, and believe things are peachy keen, you have to see that there were some grave miscalculations on SOMEONE'S part. Troop levels, prisoner interrogation...someone needs to take responsibility for this. And it starts at the top.
Rummy needs a slap with the reality stick. But the one thing that keeps him his job? Loyalty.
No, not to the USA, not to the troops, not to his generals, but to GW. And with this administration, thats all that matters.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

I'm not alone

Interestingly enough, Andrew Sullivan has been posting on some issues similar to what I'm saying, most recently about Pat Buchanan:
"To devout Muslims, what Europe offers is godless materialism and hedonism, a life devoid of meaning and purpose, save pleasure and self-indulgence. They prefer to do Allah's bidding in this world to ensure they share his paradise in the next.Undeniably, Islam is rising. And, like all rising faiths, it is intolerant. Disbelieving that all religions are equal – "There is one God, Allah, and Mohammed is his Prophet" – Islam does not believe all faiths should be treated equally. Why should they be? If one has God's revealed truth, why should one tolerate lies that lead to the damnation of the faithful?In its new constitution, the European Union has declared Christianity a dead relic. What Islam is saying – with its militancy, its soaring birth rate, it steady replacement of dying Europeans with young Muslim immigrants – is: 'Christianity may be your past, but we are your future.'My money's on the true believers." - Patrick Buchanan's latest column. I've been waiting for the social right in this country to start sympathizing with Islamic theocracy. Charles Colson blazed the trail recently. And you can see the glimmers of it in Buchanan's piece - his preference for intolerant faiths, his disgust at secular Europe, his contempt for many of the things (feminism, gay rights, cultural pluralism) that the Islamists also hate.
It is not a stretch to see that the social right in this country are headed down a slippery slope, and trying to take us with them. Just look at this.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

oh you gotta love em...

What is it with Republicans? Even when you aren't criticizing them they take it as a criticism. Can there never be peace??
My friend Environmental Republican posts a lengthy reply to my rampage about religion in goverment. He takes it as a direct criticism of Bush and the Republicans, and while I'm always ready to criticize Bush, I think you'll notice that I don't mention one political party in my post. This was not a criticism of Bush, Republicans or Democrats. It was a comment on the new resurgence of this religious movement. My point being that with all the important stuff going on in the world, of which I gave a few examples, why is it that this collection of Reverands was on Meet the Press. Why aren't there Senators and Representatives and Cabinet members out there discussing these defining points of our time? I didn't say one thing about whether or not Bush helps this or that; and I certainly wasn't implying these gentlemen don't have a right to free speech. I simply stated that I think we could have had a more thoughtful and applicable panel to discuss world issues that actually matter instead of having a panel discussing the so called moral fiber of this country.
Whether or not this country was founded on Judeo-Christian values and our 'founding fathers' were Christian is not the point. There is a separation of church and state in this country to protect government and also to protect religion. And it justs chaps my ass to see people trying to make legislation or change legislation based solely on their Christian, or any other religious values. Gay marriage being an example. Abortion being another one. How do you explain to someone who is an atheist that they can't terminate their pregnancy because according to the law, their five week old fetus has a soul and is a child. I believe this...but maybe that person doesn't. And its their body at the end of the day. We should be working on ways to limit this, including more education about safe sex, a ban on late term abortion (yes, I said it, and I'm talking anything after month 6 unless its to save the mother) and a presentation of real options for people such as adoption in this country where after 5 years you can't come back and claim you want your kid back (I know this as I know people who have adopted American rather than foreign).
And I think its naive to think that if we start letting some of this religious based legislation or whatever into our government, that it won't grow like a bad seed, And yes, get on the same path as these Muslim fundamentalists. Thats just what I believe. Please, Jerry Falwell blamed 911 on gays and 'abortionists'.
I seek and embrace no one radical, conservative or in between. I seek people who tell the truth and see our goverment like I do. Thats all anyone can seek. I was just as disgusted with Kerry's false embrace of Catholicsm to cater to that group as I am of Bush's 'born again' bullshit. Candidates religious persuasion should be a private matter and not a matter for public discourse.
Once again S, you are always seeing the battle of liberal v. conservative rather than an honest discussion on topics infinitely more important that partisan bullcrap.
ps...did you actually try and garner some sympathy for Trent Lott? C'mon, you must be kidding. Next you are going to tell me Tom Delay really deserves to be allowed to remain in your party's leadership. Those two are about as good for America as an outbreak of bubonic plague. And yes, just so you know, there are democrats I think that of also.

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