Tuesday, January 25, 2005

One Giant Run-On

Next to my computer sits a stack of "post-worthy" material. It is constructed of numerous print-outs on current events, a fine essay on Rosa Parks, Social Security information from the ISJ and Time Magazine, and a good sized accumulation of c.r.a.p. (conspiracies, rants, abstractions, and Poland). The majority of it has been justified useless by the rest of the world, but I, in my stubbornness, refuse to let it go. Everyday it accumulates and I somehow go to bed having not written a single thing about any of it! So here's a couple:

Rumsfeld, Iraq, and Molly Ivins

My beef with Donald Rumsfeld has a lengthy history...in the same way that most liberals were so taken by the moderate conservative John McCain, I was taken by Rumsfeld. Just ask my high school buddies, I was frequently reviewing the order of succession on the off chance that a national crisis would emerge and my good friend Rummy would attain the presidency...okay, so maybe his smile got me. Then it all came crashing down--

Rummy distorted prewar intelligence in regard to WMDs, cut down troop levels that the Army chiefs recommended, he completely blew the State Department's plans for occupation, quite frankly alienated our allies who we could really use right now, oh, and let us not forget the prison scandal. Don't get me started on the fact that it is costing $8 million an hour to fund the war in Iraq... A lot of these mistakes you could possibly blame on the entire administration, but he was the man who said "you go to war with the army you have, not the army you want."

Molly Ivins, of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, appears in our local paper I think every Saturday...well she and I have been battling this one together. Rumsfeld aside, the problems in Iraq are vast. Not only is the defense secretary making mistakes, bombings occur daily, assassinations have taken place, and yet for some unknown reason we're convinced that the Iraqi elections will go ahead as scheduled. You've got to be kidding me! I'll quit for now on this and will just wait it out to see if the elections become a monumental crisis or another strange victory for the Bush administration...read the Ivins article.

Oscar Nominations

Okay, so this one hadn't even made it to the stack yet, but I of course have to comment. If you've some how been under a rock and have missed all of my gallant attempts to make everyone love Ray Charles as much as I do, you would have missed one of the greatest movies of the year--Ray. Jamie Foxx gives the performance of a lifetime...his and mine. I've never seen anyone play a real person as accurately as he plays Ray. Ray is nominated for best picture and Foxx is nominated for best actor.

Though Ray is in my opinion the best picture and Foxx is the best actor there is some tough competition. There are two people in Hollywood, that when thrown in, shake it up a bit-- Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep. Well, much to Meryl's dismay she was not nominated, but Clint is...twice. Clint is nominated for best director and best actor. At the Golden Globes he was nominated for those as well as best composer. The man is gifted. He has long passed his Dirty Harry days and is one of the most brilliant men in Hollywood. Performance wise, I've not seen Million Dollar Baby yet, as it hasn't graced out presence in Pocatello, but I highly doubt his performance could be comparable to Foxx's performance. Also in the category are Johnny Depp, Don Cheadle, and Leonardo DiCaprio.

DiCaprio brings me to my next point...Titanic was snubbed. DiCaprio has been snubbed at the Oscars several times as has Kate Winslet. Both are up for Oscars this time around and if the Academy knows what's best for them they would highly consider the history. Also a several time "snubbee" is Martin Scorsese. He is also an unbelievable talent and due for an Oscar.

One more mention and then I will give you my predictions. Morgan Freeman has graced us this time around as well. I feel nearly as strongly about Morgan as I do about Ray Charles. Though in different mediums, they are pure talent. Enough said.

Here are my hopes, followed by who I think will actually win:
Best Picture: Ray, The Aviator
Best Actor: Jamie Foxx, Leonardo DiCaprio
Best Actress: Hilary Swank, Annette Bening
Best Supporting Actor: Morgan Freeman, Clive Owen
Best Supporting Actress:Virginia Madsen, Natalie Portman
Best Director: Clint Eastwood,Martin Scorsese

And of course there will be the horrible "moment of passing" as they play that tribute to the stars of yesterday. This year should be quite interesting-- since the last Oscar ceremony we have buried a former president, a music genius, Superman, and Johnny Carson. That is all...until another day.


OXEN said...

Rummy distorted prewar intelligence in regard to WMDs, [No, it was Iraq, Saddam, that did the distorting. That is unless you think Rummy somehow convinced the UN to go what our intelligence was saying, and they didn't. Read through the UN's own March 6th 2003 'Unresolved Issues Report' to see what THEY(the UN) thought Iraq had.] http://www.un.org/Depts/unmovic/documents/cluster6mar.pdf

cut down troop levels that the Army chiefs recommended, [ugggggggg not the Schensecki (sp) line again........I'm guessing your going off Kerry's line that Schensecki(sp) was "fired" because he said there should have been more troops. WRONG. He was already slated to leave at the time, the only thing that happen was someone leaked when he was leaving. It had nothing to do w/ troop levels. And it would have been nice if Clinton, who "loathes the Military", didn't gut the Armed Services like a fish during his 8 years so we had more troops available now.]

he completely blew the State Department's plans for occupation, [Yeah, the looting was a bit out of hand. But our Military isn't a police force and at the time they were still trying to fight the war. What were we supposed to do, fire at the looters? The press would have just ate that up.]

quite frankly alienated our allies who we could really use right now, [The same "allies" (France, Russia) that were involved up to their eyeballs in the Oil-for-food scandal?]

oh, and let us not forget the prison scandal. [And let's also not forget the people involved are being prosecuted, Grainer just got 10yrs, for their involvement. And BTW...............pick one you'd rather have done to you. Having panties put on your head OR getting your head cut off?]

Don't get me started on the fact that it is costing $8 million an hour to fund the war in Iraq...[Did you know we spent 130% of our GDP on W.W.II and today we only spend 3% towards Iraq?]

A lot of these mistakes you could possibly blame on the entire administration, but he was the man who said "you go to war with the army you have, not the army you want." [And that's a TRUE statement. You'd rather we tell our enemies "Yeah, we're not ready to fight right now. Can you give us another year or so to get our ducks in row?"......And here's two quotes from PATTON that back up Rummy's thinking....

There is only one tactical principle which is not subject to change. It is, "To use the means at hand to inflict the maximum amount of wounds, death, and destruction on the enemy in the minimum amount of time."

"A good solution applied with vigor now is better than a perfect solution applied ten minutes later."]

Tara A. Rowe said...

I will not even stoop to an argument with you OXEN, but believe it or not I ca formulate my own ideas all by myself...

I failed to mention one other person in that category with Clint Eastwood and Meryl Streep-- Jack Nicholson. You can bet when he's nominated he shakes things up a bit.

Nick Speth said...

Well, let's face it. Everybody beleived that Saddam had WMD. The only distortion you could accuse anybody of was one of the degree of certainty. But even if we said, "hey, we're only mildly certain. I mean, the intelligence services of The United States, Great Britain, Russia, Egypt, and Jordan all say he does, but we can't drive right to the location and show you as we could in Cuba way back when."

And then we still see Saddam act as he did, not letting inspectors have unfettered access, putting out a wordy, bogus report on how he "got rid" of the WMD, I mean, wouldn't any sane person come to the conclusion that he's hiding something?

No, I think that I disagree with you on the prewar distortions charge, but I can't disagree that some mistakes have been made in the postwar nation. No doubt, but as I list some of them in my head, I realize that a lot of the biggest came from excessive diplomacy, not Rummy's strong suit.

Still, I don't doubt that there have been some setbacks, and that our post war battle plan wasn't perfect; war seldom is. There is likely a better commander than Rumsfeld for this war. And maybe, just maybe, we should install that person.

Historical Context: When we lost so many men because poor equipment and planning saw us fighting for feet and yards in the bocage in Normandy, we didn't dump Ike and, God forbid, install Bernard Law Mongomery or George Patton as allied commander. Nor did we dump Ike when he failed to forsee the desperate German attack in the Ardennes (the battle of the bulge). And nor should we have. Eisenhower's strategy overall was sound, though he suffered some setbacks and defeats (though I would have tossed out the guy who decided to make lighter, cheaper, non-diesel tanks to go against German tigers).

Here's what we need to consider. Does the benefit of replacing Rumsfeld with a new SecDef outweigh the damage of breaking up the continuity of command? I don't really have an answer, but I do have another question: If not Rummy, then who? Who would be better suited to run this post-war operation than him? Certainly one to think about.

Nick Speth said...

Oh, and Oxen, Chill out! Tara's a pretty smart person, hardly somebody who simply spouts back what she hears on CNN or CBS News. If you want to debate, that's fine, but let's keep it civil, huh?

OXEN said...

Yeah, I guess the "getting your head cut off" line is a bit harsh.

Sorry Tara.

Just the other day the pictures came out of Nick Berg hanging upside down by his ankles from an overpass and video of terrorists in Sadr city cutting the heads off of two Iraqis that worked at a US base. So when I hear "the prison scandal" it strikes a nerve.

How could we forget about "the prison scandal"? The New York Times ran 48 front page stories in a row on it. Yet they had to be dragged kicking and screaming to even mention the Oil-For-Food debacle. Can you say agenda?

What more is there to learn after the 20th or so run-around of the same story?

Yes, what happen in Abu gharib was a bit excessive but let's not forget that these same guys were trying to kill our troops just prior to coming to that jail.

And how do you connect Rummy w/ what happened in Abu gharib? It's not like he was directing the soldier's actions.

Then again when you have Da' swimmer saying things like this I guess it'd be easy to make that case.


THE PRESIDENT'S NOMINEES -- (Senate - January 24, 2005) Mr. KENNEDY. Mr. President, Jay Bybee, William Haynes, Condoleezza Rice, Alberto R. Gonzales--these four persons have three things in common. They were all high officials in President Bush's first administration. They were all key participants in the shameful decision by the administration to authorize the torture of detainees at Guantanamo and in Iraq and they have all been nominated by President Bush for higher office.


"decision by the administration to authorize the torture"

This must just make the editors over at Al-Jazeera drool.

Of course what Kennedy said is a complete lie and he has no proof to back it up but since when have liberals let facts get in the way of a good lambasting?

Tara A. Rowe said...

As much as I would like to come to Mr. Kennedy's defense, I can't. I don't have the energy to even begin to fight that battle. Anytime you side with someone that leftist, you dig yourself a grave.

Thanks for coming to my defense Nick. Just one little comment. I don't have CNN or FOX News-- my political comments are based mostly from my observation of three things: CSPAN, The Washington Post, and my own critical thinking. I find it an insult when anyone accuses me of getting my facts elsewhere.

Nick Speth said...

The Post might be the best paper in the country, the New York Times included, so if you trust a big media outfit, trust the Post.

On a lighter note: the Oscars. I don't watch movies until I can buy the DVD. I even missed Ray, though I wanted to see it, and still will. But I wish "the Passion" somehow considered a conservative movie, perhaps referring to Michael Moore's "Jesusland," would have wound up against Moore's own "Fahrenheit 9/11" in the Documentary/Short Subject catergory. It would have given "Crossfire" subjects to debate for a week.

OXEN said...


I'm reading through Kennedy's speech from John's Hopkins the other day and this goes towards your point on the "cut down troop levels that the Army chiefs recommended"

You guy/gals on the left make the point that "we didn't or don't have enough troops in Iraq" yet Kennedy says:

"At least 12,000 American troops and probably more should leave at once, to send a stronger signal about our intentions and to ease the pervasive sense of occupation."

"to ease the pervasive sense of occupation"

Well what is? We don't have enough troops to provide security and need more, or we have to many troops and need to pull some out so Iraqis don't feel occupied?

This is why the 150,000 troops wasn't 500,000. The generals didn't want the Iraqis to feel as if we were coming in to conquer and take over but rather that we were there to depose Saddam, get them on their feet, and (here's a word you won't find in the left's lexicon) LIBERATE Iraq.

And I really wish they'd stop with the carping that we "need to set a date for the troops to leave by."

The terrorists in Iraq would just love to know that. I'm mean do they really think if we announced a date that the terrorists wouldn't hold back on attacks until after we left and then just ramp them back up?