Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Wow! - I should pay no attention more often!!!

Since I've not been paying attention:
Franken declared winner in Minnesota
(& Coleman concedes)

U.S. troops withdraw from Iraq cities
(followed by jubilation of Iraqis asserting their new-found sovreignty)
Maybe my inattention helps!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Just curious

When I was in school there was a noticeable focus on Soviet Communism and the Cold War:
"duck & cover" drills in elementary school
(preparing for nuclear attack!)

neighbors building bomb shelters

high school history - AMERICAN history - included a multi-week segment on Soviet Communism... some classes were required to read J. Edgar's Masters of Deceit.
[Fortunately, my history teacher did NOT require us to read this!]
So I'm wondering...

Does today's public school curriculum include anything about Saudi Arabia (which controls our oil) or China (the up-and-coming economic power)?

Are Chinese and Arabic offered in high school? - or does 'foreign language' still mean only Spanish, French, and German?

Just asking.

'70, Girls, 70' enjoys Fri & Sat opening weekend!

Landmark Musicals' production of 70, Girls, 70 opened Friday, 26 June... and we got a standing ovation!
Tonight's show was somewhat cleaner - fewer flubs (the joys of live theater)... but the audience was less responsive...
BUT: we got another standing O!

Assuming we make it through Sunday matinee, a success!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More "culture" opportunities for folks in ABQ

Opera Unlimited is presenting Gilbert & Sullivan's The Pirates of Penzance, Friday & Saturday, July 10 & 11, 7 p.m., Highland High School Performing Arts Center.

This production features a cast of eighty-three (83) children - from elementary to high school age.
[NO! - I'm NOT in the show!!!]

Tickets are FREE!!!

Support the arts. Get acquainted with G&S!
Encourage young performers!

[Historical note: Pirates was in fact performed by children in the 1880s, under the direction of Mr. Richard Barker - then the stage-manager of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company, which produced most of the original G&S shows.]

If a) you're in ABQ area, and b) you're bored

Landmark Musicals is producing Kander and Ebb's 70, Girls, 70, 26 Jun - 12 Jul.
Fri/Sat 7:30 p.m.
Sun 2 p.m.

For reservations, call (505) 798-9036.

[yes: I'm in the show]

"Preach on..."

A loyal reader comments:
Preach on, Brother Russ, preach on.
Yes,... well, it would be more fulfilling if I had the following of a televangelist!


... so, i've not been posting.
it's been a relief.

i subscribe to the NYT... mostly for the crossword puzzle...
BUT: i do occasionally make it thru section A and the op-ed page.
Today my response - stated to my wife: "I don't know why I read this. It just depresses me!"

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Hey - I'm not alone!

Previous post noted that:
Who's to blame?... for
child-labor laws?
the Pure Food & Drug Act?
the 40-hr, 5-day work-week?
women's suffrage?
the Civil Rights Movement?

Pinko, commie, muckraking liberals and progressives! - that's who... including socialist, God-hating labor unions!!!
David Neiwert over at Crooks & Liars takes Glenn Beck to task, using similar examples. Here's a sample:
The United States has always been an essentially capitalist economic system. However, we have experienced periods in our history where this system has seriously malfunctioned, and we've made adjustments accordingly that have largely worked well making things better.

One of those dysfunctional periods came at about the turn of the last century, when McKinley was president, corrupt robber barons ran Congress, and the latter-day version of "strict constructionists" ruled the courts. "Laissez faire" capitalism ruled, and America was functionally an oligarchy.

Squeezed out were the working people: the average workweek was 80 hours, there were no weekends, no vacation, only a few holidays, and the barest minimum of pay. Benefits and health care were unheard of. Child labor was the rule.

What happened between then and now? "Progressives" began agitating for better working conditions, and began organizing as labor unions. After a long period of violent repression, these reforms gradually became government policy -- especially in the 1930s under FDR. Americans began getting 40-hour work weeks with weekends off, paid vacations and benefits.
... But go read the whole thing!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Thought for the day (serious... sorry)

In the time of your life, live—so that in that good time there shall be no ugliness or death for yourself or for any life your life touches. Seek goodness everywhere, and when it is found, bring it out of its hiding place and let it be free and unashamed.
[William Saroyan, In the Time of your Life]

This is one of my favorite quotations from highschool.

just in case you hadn't noticed: light posting!

Begging the indulgence of loyal readers: I'll be on a very light posting schedule for the next week or so.

As noted previously, rehearsals are getting somewhat more demanding, so I'm devoting time to my lines.

Also: most of what I want to say is being said by others.
(Though there HAVE been a few "You-read-it-here-first!" items... which, sadly, I've neither the time nor the inclination to post about... but trust me: if you want to see what will be hot topics on progressive blogs & in nyt op-eds: read Private Buffoon... well, maybe starting next week sometime.)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Just for fun

Some time ago I performed a simple analysis of the "Friedman Unit" based on Tom Friedman's writings. The analysis was prompted by the observation than a Friedman Unit was somewhat indeterminate - ranging anywhere from 1 month to a year (based on Tom Friedman's assertion at any given time about how long we'd have to wait to see real progress in Iraq).
The result is presented above.
The phallic shape of the histogram is amusing!

More FUs on the way!

[Thanks to One Fly over at Outta The Cornfield for alerting me to this!]
Gates seeks to reassure allies over US role in Afghanistan
by Dan De Luce Dan De Luce, AFP
Thu Jun 11, 2009
BRUSSELS (AFP) – US Defence Secretary Robert Gates on Thursday said he was out to reassure NATO allies over concerns about a possible "Americanization" of the war effort in Afghanistan.
Gates said other alliance members shared Washington's view that the international coalition needed to demonstrate progress in the war within 12 to 18 months.
"12 to 18 months"... that's somewhere in the neighborhood of 2-3 Friedman Units.

Yes - "progress" is, by definition, always in the future...
BUT: when that elusive future is always 2-3 FUs away, it seems, well... nonsensical!

My latest letter to President Obama

The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:
Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner has been ineffectual. Upon assuming office, his sole responsibility was to craft a clear strategy to address the financial crisis left by W. He has yet to deliver this, and instead has implemented only ad hoc tactics or programs with no apparent relationship to any overall strategy. What are the strategic objectives? Where are we now? How do we get from where we are to where we want to be? Secretary Geithner has not answered any of these very basic questions. (He’s been off giving interviews and pointlessly responding to GOP talking-points!)

I have a modest proposal.
Appoint a “blue-ribbon” panel of seven (7) ordinary American citizens to craft an economic strategy for the nation.
Basic requirements:
I. Minimal citizenship standards, as measured by voting in past 4 national elections (2002 Congressional midterms, 2004 Presidential, 2006 Congressional midterms, 2008 Presidential).
The purpose of this requirement is to ensure that panel members care enough about the issues and their country to have participated in our participatory democracy.

II. Education/experience
a. Highschool graduate + 15 years work experience

b. College graduate + 10 years work experience

c. Graduate/professional degree + 10 years work experience

The purpose of this requirement is to ensure that panel members have some minimal experience living in the real world, and some minimal educational attainment.
Work experience should be measured by consecutive years filing personal tax returns. [Note: currently unemployed applicants ARE eligible, provided only that they have in the past worked for a living!]

III. Disqualifications
a. Convicted felons to be excluded.

b. Anyone who has worked in the financial sector at any level to be excluded (from bank tellers up to Wall Street CEOs).
The purpose of this exclusion is to ensure that the panel provides a counterbalance to the heavily finance-oriented perspective of your current economic advisory team.

c. Anyone who has worked (in a paid position) for a lobbying firm, a political candidate, or a current or former member of Congress to be excluded – to avoid clear conflicts of interest.

d. No more than two (2) panelists to have either undergraduate or graduate degrees in economics, finance, or business.
Again – the point is to limit the influence of presumed “experts” – and to draw instead from the life-experience and common-sense of non-experts.

IV. Demonstration of basic economic/quantitative competence
Panelists ought to be able to pass with a 10/10 score a 10-question quiz which includes basics such as, “What is GDP?”, “What is 7% of $143?”.
[I’d be happy to craft a first draft of the quiz for you!... and, in fact, anyone who can answer the two sample questions above is probably qualified!]
That’s it.
I am confident that such a panel could craft a comprehensive, effective economic strategy within six (6) weeks… a task Secretary Geithner has been unable to accomplish in six months!

Think of it this way: you’ll be creating seven new jobs!


We'll probably never know...

... if Ahmadinejad really did win the Iranian presidential election by a landslide.
He might have.
Or - the result could be based solely on fraud.

As stated: we'll likely never know.

The current Iranian regime might want to consider, however, that it was widespread public disenchantment with the Shah & his thuggish security forces that brought them to power.
Yes - it is possible for popular revolutions to succeed against well-armed police states, even in the modern era.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Headlines I really don't want to see...

Obama Bows on Settling Detainees
Administration Gives Up on Bringing Cleared Inmates to U.S., Officials Say

No - it's not the content that upsets me, it's the verbs!

"Obama Bows... "
"Administration Gives Up... "

The guy won what in recent memory amounts to a landslide - and brought both Houses of Congress with him!
Why is he "bowing" and "giving up"???

More "words"

Conservative commentators are quick to note that "Nazi" derives from "National Socialist" (longer version, National Socialist German Workers’ Party).
That "Socialist" in the name makes 'em assert - immediately, reflexively - that Hitler represented a leftist ideology!

In this worldview, a paradox immediately appears:
1. Words in and of themselves define reality.
2. Words mean what their user says they mean.
If you begin from the premise that all things bad derive from the Left, it's really quite easy to conclude that all things bad are Leftist - and find magical Words to support the conclusion.

During the previous administration, I noted that W and his minions were adherents of a Kabbalistic "magical thinking" worldview: simply invoking the right incantation was sufficient to change - in their minds, at least - reality.
One of them went so far as to say this explicitly:
"We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality."
[unnamed White House aide, quoted by Ron Suskind, NYT Magazine, 17 Oct 2004]
It can be difficult to engage these folks in honest debate.

My advice?
Don't try!
Resort to ridicule as the best rhetorical weapon at your disposal!!!

Secret decoder ring

How to understand conservative commentary regarding the Holocaust Museum shooting?
Recognize that for conservatives, "bad" and "left" are interchangeable!

Atrios noted this first:
Everyone Bad Is A Lefty
We've spent several years having fundamentalist anti-women anti-gay Muslim extremists being somehow aligned with liberals, and now anti-government anti-Semitic white supremacists are as well.
Yep - if you're a conservative commentator, anything bad must derive from the Left!

No - I don't understand it either... but then, I didn't understand Jonah Goldberg's title: Liberal Fascism.
A willingness to assign personal meanings to words is ... well, psychotic!

... though "meaning" has confounded very smart folks from Plato to Wittgenstein, and Lewis Carroll probably had a point:
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less."
[Through the Looking-Glass, Chapter 6]
I note that Tom Tancredo believes Sotomayor is too liberal... because she is associated with La Raza, which he takes to be the Latino version of the KKK!
The KKK: that bastion of commie, pinko, fellow-traveling Leftists!

[semi-pointless aside: I am currently working with a director who can't tell 'right' from 'left' - as in "stage right" & "stage left"... it makes rehearsals challenging. I provided her with a job-aid: a simple diagram from the "house/audience" perspective showing Stage Right, Center, Stage Left, Up Right, & Up Left.
Even if YOU can't tell right from left, if you intend to convey your intentions to others it's important to use the terms consistently and in a way that will be understood by others!]

You may have noticed...

... I'm on "light posting" schedule.
Rehearsals are picking up in frequency & intensity - I'm actually expected to know my lines!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Windows 'Vista'

When I first got my new PC with Windows Vista, one of my loyal readers asked me how I liked it - Windows Vista.

At the time I had no comment, having had very little experience with the product.
I am now prepared to opine: I've gotten used to it, but only by making it look & feel as much like older Windows operating systems as I can... and I've learned to NEVER accept automatic upgrades!

Maybe someday I'll be sufficiently tech-literate to go with a UNIX-based, open-source platform.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

What a surprise!

To loyal readers, no surprise: I crafted post below into letter to Tim Kaine, chair of the DNC.

Yes - I write letters.
(You can too!)

Just out of curiosity...

... What's wrong with socialism?

Pure, unbridled capitalism brought us:
- 8-year-olds losing fingers, hands, & arms in industrial looms
- the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire
- 80-hour work-weeks
- the Great Depression

Me? I'm rather in favor of the government protecting me from pure capitalist greed!

Token Tuesday post

"Old News" headlines, June/July 2009:
President Washington Applauds Balloon Pilot

Americans Search Arctic For Lost British Explorer

Rome Invades Britain

New Bridge Sways In Wind

Professional Baseball Clubs Form "American League"

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Everything W touched...

... turned to shit.

Me? If I were the head of the DNC, I'd NEVER let the country forget this:

... and play multiple fugues upon this theme.
EVERYTHING the GOP touched turned to shit!

Repeat, over and over. Ad nauseam.

Whenever a GOP opponent says anything, laugh...

Don't be afraid to trash Saint Reagan!
- Tax-cuts for the wealthy?
"Oh, you mean voodoo economics!"
- De-regulation?
"Oh, you mean the Savings & Loan disaster!"


More: the gift that keeps on giving

NKorea sentences 2 US journalists to 12 years jail
By VIJAY JOSHI, Associated Press
7 June 2009
SEOUL, South Korea – North Korea said its top court convicted two U.S. journalists and sentenced them to 12 years in labor prison Monday, intensifying the reclusive nation's confrontation with the United States.

On March 7, 2001, barely a month into Bush's new term, South Korean president Kim Dae-jung made a working visit to Washington in hope of keeping the Clinton policy on North Korea on track under the new US administration. On the eve of the Kim visit, Powell told reporters that the Bush administration would build on the Clinton momentum on North Korea. The White House instantly rebuked Powell, with Bush making it clear that his administration would do no such thing.
[PART 8: Bush's bellicose policy on N Korea , Asia Times, 5 Jan 2007; emphasis added]
The fruits of W's misguided rejection of diplomacy with North Korea?
North Korea has actively re-started its nuke program.
North Korea has actively continued testing ICBMs.
... and now, North Korea is playing high-stakes international politics with American journalists.
Quite a coup, W!

Never forget: EVERYTHING that W touched turned to shit!

[an old bumper sticker: "I never thought I'd miss Nixon!"]

p.s On the lighter side... from an old segment of "The Capital Gang", following a trip by NM Governor Bill Richardson to North Korea:
CARLSON: ... I think we should all sleep better tonight knowing that peace is at hand between New Mexico and North Korea.
[CNN CAPITAL GANG, 11 Jan 2003]

This doesn't sound good

1Q credit card delinquency rate jumps 11 percent

I note that the professionals who get their views published are almost all citing various indicators to support the "forecast" that the recession is bottoming out.

Me? Until SecTreas Geithner presents a clear strategy for dealing with the big banks and other Wall Street powers, I'm skeptical.
... and I've pretty much lost hope that SecTreas Geithner will EVER present a clear strategy.

I'm coming to the conclusion that a half-dozen randomly selected voters could do a better job crafting an economic policy than the economic whizzes in Obama's administration.

Hmmm... I wonder... [update]

Lebanon's pro-Western majority declares victory

Ya think Obama's Cairo speech might have helped?
(... or maybe just that Obama's now in the White House - not his blustering, belligerent predecessor?)

[Update: I'm not the only one thinking these thoughts. Here's the HuffPost headline:
The Obama Effect? Pro-Western Majority Declares Victory Over Hezbollah In Lebanon
Note the framing: The Obama Effect is first - the eye-catching phrase!... and the explicit Victory Over Hezbollah is prominent. (Recall: Hezbollah is the axis-of-evil-Iranian-supported terrorist group.) THESE are the rhetorical devices we so-called progressives oughta be using FREQUENTLY!]

p.s. Why do I use the descriptor "so-called"? In today's political debate, I prefer to think of myself not as "progressive" but as "sane"!

Hooray for the Iraqis!

Iraqis detain 5 US contractors in Baghdad
By ROBERT H. REID, Associated Press
7 June 2009
BAGHDAD – Five U.S. contractors have been detained in the investigation of the slaying of another American in Baghdad's Green Zone, officials said Sunday, in what may become the first case of U.S. citizens facing Iraqi justice under a security agreement that took effect this year.

Three thoughts.
Thought #1: Hooray for the Iraqis! - legitimately exercising their sovereignty.

Thought #2: I'm wondering how many more similar events it'll take before even Bill Kristol thinks it's time for us to LEAVE IRAQ!

Thought #3 (related to Thought #2): How many more similar incidents will it take till KBR, Parsons, Xe, and the other thieves, criminals, and war profiteers decide that maybe they'd rather not be in Iraq?

Our MBA president: The gift that keeps on giving

APNewsBreak: Major problems found in war spending
By RICHARD LARDNER, Associated Press
7 June 2009
WASHINGTON – This is one Christmas gift U.S. taxpayers don't need. Construction of a $30 million dining facility at a U.S. base in Iraq is scheduled to be completed Dec. 25. But the decision to build it was based on bad planning and botched paperwork.
In its first report to Congress, the Wartime Contracting Commission presents a bleak assessment of how tens of billions of dollars have been spent since 2001. The 111-page report, obtained by The Associated Press, documents poor management, weak oversight, and a failure to learn from past mistakes as recurring themes in wartime contracting."

Ah, yes: the miracle of the market!
- Private enterprise is inherently efficient
- No need for oversight... No-bid contracts will work like a charm
- No patriotic company would ever give us anything but the very best

Quoting Karl Rove:
“I know lots of stupid people who went to Ivy League schools.”
Yes, Karl, I bet you do... I can name one of 'em!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

65 years ago today: 6 June, 1944


A "thought for the day"


[via email]

Friday, June 5, 2009

Fun with statistics

On Tuesday I had 11 visitors (excluding me!).
On Wednesday I had 17 visitors (ditto).
On Thursday I had 21 visitors (ditto).

At this rate, I should have 100K+ visitors/day in just over... 54 years!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

... and now for something completely different!

A few posts back I included an embed of a YouTube vid: "The Court of King Caractacus".

There were a number of reasons for this pointless post:
1. My interest in it derives from G&S's
The Pirates of Penzance.
The Major-General's song:
"... and tell you every detail of Caractacus's uniform."
(More on which - if you're truly bored - to be found here.)
2. It's simply fun!

3. It illustrates a principle of effective training:
"Engage as many senses as possible!"
It is that last point to which THIS post is addressed!

Once upon a time I was an industrial statistician (as in, "a statistician working in industry"... not "a tough, resilient statistician"). Among my duties? Training engineers to do statistics relevant to their jobs.

I was also required to TAKE classes - continuing-education for industrial statisticians & others. One of the very few classes that had an impact on my behavior as a practicing industrial statistician? "Accelerated Learning": designing effective training classes. The basic idea? Make classes activity-based.

Tonight, in a completely different context, I had occasion - for the first time in a long while - to think about this again. Here are a few reflections on the topic:
A book was included with the class:
Creative Training Techniques Handbook.
- Note the title word: "training" - this is focused on 'training' NOT on 'education'. One of the things it took me way too long to realize as a trainer in industry was that there's a difference between 'education' and 'training'. 'Education' is aimed at 'understanding'; 'training' is aimed at 'changing behavior'.

Random thoughts (things I remember) from the class:
Provide crayons & scrap paper to all participants - encourage doodling
pedagogical value: doodling really can promote memory/learning
Provide a cartoonish 'course map' to further encourage doodling & using the crayons
pedagogical value: helps students figure out where we are, where we're going, and what the objective is... + doodling/coloring promotes memory/learning
Cheating is good.
When I re-designed my stat classes, I almost always started out with a 'final exam' - 10-20 questions to be answered in teams of 2-3
Students were told explicitly: "If you can't find the answer in the student workbook, ask another team for help!"
pedagogical value: ALL the stuff you need to know is in the student workbook... AND YOU CAN FIND IT! (... Oh, and, by the way: how do you do things at work? - if you don't know, you ask a colleague!)
(note: I typically had a LOT of activites designed to drive home this point: "Everything you need to know is in the book, AND YOU CAN FIND IT!")
If you want students to leave the class knowing how to DO something, build the class around 'em DOING those things!
(Recall: leaving the class knowing how to DO something is what distinguishes 'training' from 'education'!)
Some chord-striking quotations from the first few chapters of the book:
"Adults are babies with big bodies."
(Babies learn by playing - so do adults)

"Learning is directly proportional to the amount of fun you have."

"Learning has not taken place until behavior has changed."
(Recall - we're talking about 'training')
More chord-striking quotations:
"You cannot motivate other people."

"All people are motivated."

"People do things for their reasons, not your reasons."
When designing 'activity-based' classes, it's important (critical) to remember that the activities aren't simply tacked on to the material, the activities ARE the material!
My experience re-designing stat classes to be 'experiential' and focused on DOING is that...
1. it takes a LOT MORE up-front work to design the class effectively

2. it takes a LOT LESS work to teach the class once it's designed (with all materials in place, activities designed, etc.)
Now you know.

Old News

Headlines for Apr/May 2009:
Alcock and Brown Fly Atlantic Ocean

Jack Johnson Wins Championship Fight

Lord Grey Reforms British Government

Apple-Tree Grower Inspires Folklore
A Camping Trip with Johnny Appleseed
Old News is one of the three periodicals to which I subscribe. It's formatted as a newspaper (typically 12 pages), with short articles from history - from ancient times to WWII. Pictures (all black & white) accompany most articles - photos when available; etchings, woodcuts, paintings otherwise.

Published bimonthly (which in this context means every other month).
Subscription? $17/year (six issues); $33/2 yrs (12 issues).
Old News
3 W. Brandt Blvd
Landisville, PA 17538-9964
Now you know.

p.s. disambiguation: "bimonthly" in American English can mean either
every-other month;
twice a month.
The easiest disambiguation I've discovered is to adopt the British "fortnightly" for "twice-a-month", and to use "bimonthly" to mean "every-other-month"... Tho' "fortnightly" really means every fourteen days, which isn't the same as "twice a month".
Nevertheless, as stated, it's the cleanest disambiguation I've discovered.
Any other suggestions?

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

I didn't know he had a vote!

Rush flips; may support Sotomayor
Andy Barr, Politico.com
3 June 2009
After calling Judge Sonia Sotomayor a “reverse racist” last week, conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh said Wednesday that he may now possibly support President Barack Obama’s pick for the Supreme Court.

Is Limbaugh delusional?
Does he really believe he gets to vote on her?

note: as one of the ABQ Old-Guy Bloggers reminds me - she was a Bush I appointee to the federal bench!

eBay currency index

That 499.99 GBP item?
It's now at $821.38!

On 17 Mar I reported:
the dollar dropped today...

how do i know?

eBay! - a "buy it now" item listed at 499.99 GBP is currently at $704.34.
Yesterday it was in the mid-$690s.

Yes - even eBay is a source of financial information!
Again: it may be time to re-think that European vacation!

p.s. from $704.34 on 17 March to $821.38 on 2 June is about a 42% decline of the dollar.
At an annualized rate: 58%!
We're getting poorer by the minute!

I'd be more sympathetic... IF

I'd be more sympathetic to the pro-life folks IF:
They didn't applaud murder.
They were pro-LIVING: supporting, e.g.,
Aid to single mothers
Early childhood education
As it is, my impression is that once fetus metamorphoses into newborn, they lose all interest in the LIFE before them.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

"How I start my day"

The right nav bar includes a list of sites labeled "How I start my day."
Both the list & the descriptor are accurate...
BUT: my day frequently starts at about 10 p.m.!

Probably not wise, but was this really a "secret"?

U.S. Releases Secret List of Nuclear Sites Accidentally
Published: June 2, 2009
The federal government mistakenly made public a 266-page report, its pages marked “highly confidential,” that gives detailed information about hundreds of the nation’s civilian nuclear sites and programs, including maps showing the precise locations of stockpiles of fuel for nuclear weapons.

Okay - this was a screw-up.
BUT: how much of the information was truly "secret" - unknown and unknowable via publicly available sources?

Me? I think our "classification" system needs radical reform... pretty much starting from scratch.
With very few exceptions, everything gets declassified TOMORROW! - if it really ought to be kept secret, the owner provides a cogent, clear, defensible rationale TODAY.

Sorry, but I can't resist the temptation...

Al-Qaida criticizes Obama's upcoming Cairo speech

Hmmm... al Qaeda is criticizing Obama's speech before he's delivered it!

Sounds a lot like the GOP!!!

Monday, June 1, 2009

One more reason to publish the photos...

Why'd Obama switch on detainee photos? Maliki went ballistic
By Nancy A. Youssef | McClatchy Newspapers
1 June 2009
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama reversed his decision to release detainee abuse photos from Iraq and Afghanistan after Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki warned that Iraq would erupt into violence and that Iraqis would demand that U.S. troops withdraw from Iraq a year earlier than planned, two U.S. military officers, a senior defense official and a State Department official have told McClatchy.
[emphasis added]

I favored releasing the photos before.
This news has only added another reason! - Please: let's get out of Iraq TODAY!

NO!!! (altenatively: Why???)

Gates: More missile defense spending possible

I've previously posted my opinion of our high-tech missile defense system.

Short version: Maginot Line.

Token post

To reward regular readers I need to post something.
This is it!

Rehearsals + analyzing NM1 election results is keeping me otherwise engaged... and I'm lazy.

Have I missed anything?