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Virtual Sanity

NEW! My Basic Training Blog has it's own site. Click here to read a day-by-day account of the first 10 weeks of Army life.

Friday, September 27, 2002

Some, including Best of the Web, have been talking about how Stephen Spielberg and Tom Cruise have come out in favor of the President's stand against Saddam Hussein. Although I agree with their statements, some of the opinions comming out of Hollywood over the years have been so over the top, they discredit everything that may be an actual informed opinion. Many Hollywood idols believe they have been annointed with some kind of duty to lead the masses to the correct way of thinking, and I don't think we should trumpet those that agree with us, because by doing so, it just gives more creedance the opinions of those that disagree with us. However, there is an important difference between what Spielberg and Cruise are saying and what Barbara Streisand and Ed Asner have been saying. One group is saying resist at all cost because we think what we are doing is wrong. The other is not proposing alternatives based upon their personal opinions, views, or what they may see on TV, they are saying we should have faith in those that do have access to the information available to make informed decisions. After all, isn't that why we elected them in the first place?

Now, THAT is advise well heeded.

The new DVD link to the right is a movie written and directed by a friend of mine from college. A funny romantic comedy about a guy who falls for two women who share the same first name. The typical problems you can probably think of do occur, but there are some other twists as well that make this film unique and well worth seeing.

Nope, I wasnt inspired to read this by Jonah Goldberg, although I was reminded that I already owned the book when he mentioned that he was picking it up again (if it was someone else, I apologize for the mistake, but it was months ago). Anyway, I had bought the book for a class I had at Columbia called History of the City of New York. We read excerpts from it, and I had been meaning to read the entire thing for years.

Recently finished Tom Clancy's new book, Red Rabbit. It's a new installment in the Jack Ryan thread, but it takes place between Patriot Games and Red October, as Ryan is just getting his feet wet in the CIA. I'm glad Clancy went back in a time a bit for this one because after 2 books where Ryan is president has pretty much exhausted what he can do in the future. Personally, I would prefer if he ended that and focused on the John Clark story more, but we will see in the future. The only criticism I see in Clancy is his tendency to have different characters state something in the exact same way. Most often in Red Rabbit, this occurs in descriptions of Moscow. Different characters that do not even know each other, normally do not use the exact same phrasing to describe a place or situation. I realize is actually Clancy's point of view, and authors' works are many times how they see the world, but when I run across this (and it has occurred in the last couple Clancy novels quite often), I say to myself, "yeah, I got it the last time you said that."
Wednesday, September 25, 2002

I caught some news of Tony Blair's presentation yesterday to the British Parliament. Most of the members who spoke up were against any unilateral action. Despite the fact that with British participation it would be bilateral action, and ignoring the recent statements by leaders in Italy and Spain that they are with us, there was one minister who made a point that just seared into my head (I paraphrase here):
How does an action that is right when many support it become wrong with only one supports it?

That, in a nutshell, is a simple, and the single best retort to the multilateralist self-congratulatory oral masturbation that we hear daily. Basically, what the parliamentarian is saying is that the action is either morally right or wrong, and it shouldnt matter how many people agree with it. It shows that those that are stalling do not care about right or wrong - they only care about how they appear to others. Certainly NOT the type of person who makes a good leader.

Postscript: I guess you could have every nation in the world except 2 on board and some would still not be satisfied of a true international coalition. After all, without the participation of France and Germany, what point is there?

Friday, September 20, 2002

Watched this new show on FOX and it looks like it will be pretty interesting. However, the show before, called Firefly (I think) struck me: they shouldve just called it "Star Wars, the Series":

There is a rebellion against The Alliance of planets
Lead character is a ruffian who pilots a transport ship, he does not believe in religion
Someone is searching for a girl being helped by said pilot
Despite technology, outer planets all have a wild wild west feel

Too many parallels. The opening scene reminded me of the bar scene in the Mos Eisley spaceport so I started keeping track. I guess its ok, since the Star Wars movies were done by 20th Century Fox.

No real opinion, just some obervations - wasn't spectacular. Unless it gets better, I wouldn't expect it to be around long.

Thursday, September 19, 2002

Yes, Im back. I apologize for the absense, although I dont think I get many hits these days other than what comes through google. Anyway, I wont be posting much any more because I have finally found a job. In January, I will be shipping off to basic training and begin a career as a linguist with the US Army.

Last year, a 13-year-old fan was killed by a puck at a hockey game. The NHL decided to put netting around the rink all way way around the ice surface. Everyone should have seen this comming. Its the obvious thing to do in our over-litigious knee-jerk reactionary society. Yes, it is a tragedy that a 13-year-old was killed at the game, but lets keep this in perspective. I think I remember reading that she was the 3rd fan in the history of the NHL to have been killed while attending a game. It was a freak accident because the puck struck her square in the temple - going to a hockey game is not a risky thing. Id be willing to bet that 100x that many have been killed on their way to or from those same games in auto accidents. Do they mandate everyone take public transportation? What happens when a baseball fan gets hit by a ball and killed? Netting going up all around baseball stadiums? No way. Fans would revolt. Part of the fun of going to a baseball game is knowing that there is a chance (unless you are directly behind home plate) that you could catch a ball and take it home with you. While it happens less often in hockey, the same excitement is there.

Am I overreacting? Am I ranting? Maybe and probably. Im just getting sick of people making judgements based upon a one-time incident.

UPDATE: OK, after a more careful rereading, the netting is going up only on the ends of the ice, where hard shots could be redirected in the crowd. So as Roseanne Rosanadana would say... never mind.

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