Friday, May 19, 2006

There are still among us today those who carry the scar of Hitler's idea of a "Solution" to the "Jewish Problem". They are most likely in their 70's and the tattoo may have faded to a bluish-black blur, but the memories are as clear as yesterday. The G.I.'s who rescued them from Auschwitz and Dachau and the other camps share the unfortunate nightmares of what they experienced. A trip to the Holocaust Museum in our nation's capital will leave an unforgettable memory and a sadness that stays with you for days. Sadness that we as humans could ever do something so evil to other Human Beings. "Never Again" is the motto of those who suffered and lost so much and survived. And they are right. Never again should we as allow this kind of evil to roam freely on the Earth unchallenged. Never again can we allow an egotistical, megalomanical, insane asshat to murder millions to satiate his own insane idea of divine right and divine might. And yet, today we learn that the history is attempting to repeat itself.
Hitler started off small. He began by first identifying the Jews as the source of many of the woes of the German people, especially the economic depression they were going through. Sticking with his plan of small steps, the next step was to make those responsible easily identifiable. The yellow Juden star was handed out and forced on the Jewish citizens. Since the next step was rounding up "undesirables", it made it much quicker if they were easy to spot.
Iranian expatriates have now reported to several news outlets that the Iranian Parliament is considering a law which would once again force the yellow identification on all Jews, as well as red for Christians and blue for Zoroastrians. This is nothing new, the same bill was brought before Parliament two years ago but was stopped. If the stories are true and the bill has been resurrected there is no reason not to believe that an unabashedly anti-Semitic such as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad would sign it into law. He has already dismissed the Holocaust as myth and called for the destruction of Israel.
When and if the story is confirmed Bush has a hard decision to make. If the story is true, then he needs to make it absolutely, 100%, crystal f**king clear that we will not sit idly by and allow such an egregious violation of human rights to take place. He will need to ensure that President Ahmadinejad understands that signing such a bill into law will be paramount to declaring war, pitting their hijacked, distorted version of Islam against the rest of the world.
I believe that if this story is true and they are actually considering it, they most likely have hawks in Parliament that have got to know the retribution that such an act will bring down on them. I believe that they are setting themselves up for a retaliatory strike from Israel in hopes of having an excuse to declare war and try out their nice new shiny nuclear weapons against a perceived enemy that they have longed to obliterate for decades.
It's a truly mad world and I believe that we are most likely going to have ringside seats to the end of it if we don't stand up to the forces of pure evil in this world and slap them down now.

Never Again

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Now comes the story that the NSA has millions on millions of records of phone calls. Let the hysteria begin. The media is trying their hardest to spin this into some Orwellian plot by W and crew to spy on everyone. That's right, the NSA needs to know how often you call aunt Tilly in Iowa to swap recipes for chicken. They are logging down and taking extensive notes on all the calls you place to compile a record against you in the chance that your pizza delivery records have some significance at your trial over a speeding ticket.
Get real people. Loosen up those knickers and take a deep breath. Unlike Al Gore, there actually is a controlling legal authority in this case. The congress is involved and are given briefs on what the program is doing and how they are getting their information. It's only now that the programs particuulars have been leaked that these same congress members are pulling a CYA move and claiming that they didn't receive enough info. It seems peculiar to me that had these congressmen thought that there was something fishy about this program that they would have already called for an investigation into the matter. They can't seem to wait to call for an investigation into even the most mundane and ridiculous, so why not something that might actually make W look bad? The simple answer is that they know that they have nothing. So instead of taking the chance of being proven a fool, they will let the media spin it out of control and rely on the myrmidons on the left to pick up the pitchforks and torches and storm the castle.
What I would like to know is where was this amount of outrage when Echelon was announced? Where was the outrage over bubba using the IRS powers to audit those who had allied against him? Where was the outrage over bubba and shrillary using the FBI to gather intel on their political enemies. Where was the outrage over Sandy "Docs in socks" Berger actually stealing and destroying classified material? The fact that classified information was leaked to journalists is also receiving no airtime in this story, and there's no outrage over this either. There is no such thing as the lawful "leaking" of classified information, much the same as there is no lawful "borrowing" money from the liquor store with the aid of a sawed-off shotgun. Disseminating classified intel to unauthorized sources is a crime, a fairly serious crime. Does the name Rosenberg ring a bell. While not on the scale of delivering secrets to the Soviets, it's still treasonous. Now the government is searching phone records (pen lists) to determine who comitted the crime and the jornalists are whizzing in their nighties. What exactly did they expect was going to happen when they got into the business of revealing classified information?

Monday, May 08, 2006

Just had an interesting debate on another blog, about music. Specifically what bands were good and which ones sucked. The writer set it up as a "this band -vs- that band" voting and we actually got some pretty good responses. A smattering of obscure references, and more than a few personal tales coming from memories the music sparked. Which led me to thinking that music plays a huge part in our lives. Don't think so, look at the shelves in your music store labelled "Soundtracks". Think that would be there if music didn't matter. Ask anyone what song reminds them of a certain time in their life and I'm willing to wager that they will name you one.
I remember the summer of '82 like it was yesterday. I had just graduated HS and was waiting to go into Boot Camp the following February. I was a teen looking for fun, dealing with boredom, and wrestling with the idea that in less than 6 months some stranger was going to shave my head and send me off to do God knew what, God knew where. What songs come to mind? Billy Squier was huge that summer. "The Stroke" was on WDIZ every 30 minutes. I even went to see him in concert. He opened for Foghat, Rossington-Collins, and Heart. Everyone of those bands had songs that play into my memories of that summer. Jamming to Heart's "Magic Man" at the beach, cranking Foghat's "Slow Ride" on the way to work (I had it on 8-track), and no child of the 70's/early 80's ever forgets "Freebird". "I Love Rock-n-Roll" was huge that summer as was tunes from that new guy, John Cougar.
So much of our lives revolve around music that I believe we begin to take it for granted. You want to see a hellacious day. Forget about "A day with out illegals", ponder on a day without tunes. No music on the ride into work, no radio on your desk, or riding piggyback on your forklift, nothing but dead air for the commute home. No thank you.
So whether your kick is headbanging with Disturbed, or crooning with Bing & Fred, kicking with Garth, or slow dancing to Manilow, remember the music and what it means to you. Pass your love of music on. Take the kids to a concert (preferably KISS & Aerosmith, arguably one of the best concerts I have ever seen). Listen, really listen to those tunes playing in the background. Except for that organ crap at the ball game. As Eddie Izzard sasys, that really is shite.

Monday, May 01, 2006

I went this weekend to see United 93, and I must say that it was a very well made movie. I urge everyone to go see it, not only for the message, but also to see how a really good movie is made. No over-the-top graphics, no CG monsters, no gratuitous violence or sex. A story told well and simply. The acting was top notch, especially seeing as how the movie really "starred" no one. You may recognize a few of the actors, but none really jump out at you. A look at turns up resumes which include a lot of "Law & Order" type appearances, and, frequently, not even a publicity photo. Paul Greengrass wrote and directed a hell of a movie. One that does not try and entertain you with fight scenes, or attempt to pluck up your spirit or patriotism with corny lines and speeches. Rather what Mr Greengrass has done is attempt to portray what he believed events were actually like on that horrendous day, and what average, ordinary people would have felt and done when thrown into a chaotic situation such as this. I believe that he achieved this admirably and the movie is a fitting homage to the heroic actions of a few everyday people tossed into a nightmare situation.