July 31, 2004

FAHRENCRAP

I just got back from watching Fahrencrap 9/11 with some friends; the one husband mailed his bootleg copy from Iraq, so we thought we'd give it a look. I thought I'd have a lot to say after I watched it, but I only have three words for Michael Moore. Boring. As. Hell. Seriously, my friend put it best when she said it was like watching one of those videos in middle school where you knew there would be a quiz but you could barely keep your eyes open. Maybe it was because I've already read so much commentary about the movie, but I found myself looking at my watch a lot. There were a few funny bits that kept us going, but that's not saying much; there were funny bits in Dude, Where's My Car? too, but it ain't winnin' any awards. I can't believe people had to pay money to see this movie.

Oh, and I could've gone my whole life without hearing Michael Moore say "who's your daddy"...

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MEAN

Ohhhh, this is mean. One of the German pop-ups makes the same sound that Yahoo messenger makes! That sound makes any military wife come running, hoping that her husband has just logged in; instead you find a pop-up for T-Mobile. Mean, mean, mean.

My computer programmer friend is coming over tomorrow to do scary things to my computer that include the words "reinstall" and "virus". Hopefully she can teach me how to get rid of all of these damn pop-ups, especially the extremely graphic German porn ones.

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HOPE

As commenter kdeweb said, "This is HI-larious."
Kerry tried to shake some Marines' hands...

MORE TO GROK:

And I love the caption Duane put on the photo!

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ST. AVOLD

VDH writes about our military cemeteries in St. Avold, France:

The inscriptions at American graveyards admonish the visitor to remember sacrifice, courage, and freedom; they assume somebody bad once started a war to hurt the weak, only to fail when somebody better stopped them.

I've been to St. Avold, on Veteran's Day, led by two old men who understood Joe and Tommy's sacrifice. My distant relatives from Lorraine, who lost a brother in WWII, took me to see the greatest generation that slumbers beneath French soil, at a time when that unfortunately didn't mean as much to me as it does now. That rainy day in November 1998 I was more amused than anything as these two septuagenarians insisted that we talk to every cemetery director and guard so that they could introduce me as their cousine américaine. They were so proud to be sharing Armistice Day with an American, and I was a dumb kid who didn't appreciate their enthusiasm.

One of those grateful old men passed away last fall, and I was too stubborn to go see him. Only today did I realize that I let my hatred of France prevent me from paying respect to a good and decent man. I let things like this get in the way of family and honor. I realize that I have been so angry at our former allies that I refused to go say goodbye to a dear old man, and all of a sudden I feel ashamed.

The men of St. Avold would've wanted me to behave better.

avold.jpg

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July 30, 2004

CARPET BOMBING

Amritas pointed me to a Nelson Ascher post that I wish I'd seen yesterday.

All this to say that hearing day after day, reading hour after hour, watching minute after minute for months and months all the liberal media, that is, basically all the media telling me that Kerry will win, that Bush doesn’t have a chance is not only exhausting. It’s just natural that for a couple of minutes or even hours a week my rational defenses will be taking some rest, and if this happens repeatedly, the message about the inevitability of a Kerry victory will begin to grow roots in my brain. And this makes me afraid because I know we’re watching the most complete, worldwide, continuous media effort ever to influence an election. What the world media is doing is the most aggressive, savage campaign of carpet-bombing in human history.

I've succumbed to the carpet-bombing. Many people I know and bloggers I read have also succumbed. We're weary and dejected. I talked to a Soldier who just yesterday -- just yesterday -- found out that Kerry attended anti-war rallies after he came home from Vietnam. Just. Yesterday. The brainwashing the media has done is incredible, and it absolutely makes me want to cry.

My laser beam is in trouble. So is Ascher's, it seems. Nelson, we have to stay strong. We have to refocus. We have to Forget the Idiots Today, like you encouraged me to do on 9-11-03:

I also know I should avoid reading much today, because many, probably most things that are and will be published will make me even angrier. And the problem is not that I don't want to be angrier: I do want. The problem is that I do not want to waste a miligram of my anger on all the idiots who have been getting ready to show us how idiotic they are. We're at a point where to be too angry at, say, Chomsky and the BBC, Old Europe and ANSWER, second and third rate entertainers and academics is to give them a kind of victory. They deserve disdain. Anger needs to remain concentrated like light in a laser beam, we must direct it toward its rightful target: Islamofascism first and foremost. If we spend too much time getting mad at those who are but idiots we run the risk of forgetting, even if only for a second, that it is the Muslim/Arab religious fanatics who are the ENEMY. In a way, that's the idiots' main weapon: to attract a wrath that could be more usefully directed to the really dangerous enemies. Whenever we're not thinking about the Jihadists we are losing some very precious time. And anger.

We need to stay strong. I have so much anger for the media these days that it's starting to cloud my resolve. I need to refocus. That Soldier who just yesterday learned of Kerry's anti-war past got a list of links to follow. He's open to the truth, and he'll find it eventually. And maybe he'll tell a friend.

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UPDATE

My home computer has major problems right now, so blogging might be rough this weekend. Plus I have final papers to grade, so don't expect much.

Knitting update: Still waiting for the pink and white yarn. It's in the mail, thanks to my mother-in-law, and I'm anxious to get that project done. Especially since it's still sweater weather here in Germany. I have started a new sweater already and finished the back last night (photo later when my computer stops acting like a jerk). In the meantime, I found a pattern I'd really like to try, save two major obstacles: 1) the yarn is honkin' expensive and 2) intarsia knitting is something I've never done before; I even had to google it because I didn't know what the heck it was. Plus I have a ton of projects I should already be working on first, but I keep pulling up this pattern and looking at it longingly. So many patterns, only two hands...

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MUST READ

Many thanks to Bunker for pointing me in the direction of The Case for George W. Bush. I do not understand the gut feelings of distaste that many have for President Bush, for when I look at him I see a man who is sincere and down to earth. But despite Junod's revulsion, he manages to look past the ad hominem. The part that gave me chills:

In 1861, Abraham Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus, and historians today applaud the restraint he displayed in throwing thousands of American citizens in jail. By the middle of 2002, George W. Bush had declared two American citizens enemy combatants, and both men are still in jail at this writing, uncharged. Both presidents used war as a rationale for their actions, citing as their primary constitutional responsibility the protection of the American people. It was not until two years later that Congress took up Lincoln's action and pronounced it constitutionally justified. Our willingness to extend Bush the same latitude will depend on our perception of what exactly we're up against, post-9/11. Lincoln was fighting for the very soul of this country; he was fighting to preserve this country, as a country, and so he had to challenge the Constitution in order to save it. Bush seems to think that he's fighting for the very soul of this country, but that's exactly what many people regard as a dangerous presumption. He seems to think that he is fighting for our very survival, when all we're asking him to fight for is our security, which is a very different thing. A fight for our security? We can handle that; it means we have to get to the airport early. A fight for our survival? That means we have to live in a different country altogether. That means the United States is changing and will continue to change, the way it did during and after the Civil War, with a fundamental redefinition of executive authority.

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July 29, 2004

CLOSE

Well, we didn't quite make it to a full sewing machine, but we got close (together we donated $300). My sincere thanks to everyone who pitched in for this project of mine. Hopefully the women of Ramadi will be sewing like the wind soon...

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HMMM

There may be correlation, but is there causation?
Fear of hell makes us richer, Fed says

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FUNDING

Tanker sent me this link from Iraq the Model. Those brothers are smart cookies:

This reveals the fact that the terrorists’ resources are no longer sufficient to their expenses and this is what made them seek financial support through these criminal operations.
Ok, we know now that they’re close to bankruptcy and here come two countries to reinforce the terrorists position by withdrawing from Iraq. And people here in Iraq believe that Manilla paid several millions of dollars to free the hostage just like what the Egyptians did when the Egyptian embassy announced that the operation was more about money than about politics.
Do you know what this means?

Millions of dollars mean hundreds of victims. They’re funding terror in one way or another and I find it very stupid that negotiations take place through the help of a highly under suspicion-group like the "Sunni Muslim Cleric Council".

There’s a deal to fund terror in a different way than before and there are groups and countries who support this and maneuver to override the obstacles.
Negotiating with those thugs provides them with legitimacy let alone submitting to their demands and funding them.

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SULLIVAN

I just posted this over on Vodkapundit's fisking of Andrew Sullivan.

"I have no real beef with Sullivan, but I don't visit his site as often as I used to. I was curious to hear that he had added a donkey to the header on his blog, so I went over there and just read this:

QUOTE OF THE DAY: "As few as five people in black robes can look at a particular issue and determine for the rest of us, insinuate for the rest of us that they are speaking as the majority will. They are not." - Rep. John Hostettler, the Republican who authored the bill that would strip federal courts of the right to consider the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act. But, of course, it could also be said about the five Supreme Court Justices who made George W. Bush the president of the United States. The Republicans love courts when they reach the right decision; they just despise them when they don't.

Wow. Has he really gotten that far out of hand that he's playing the Bush-stole-the-election game? Geez."

If the man wants to vote for Kerry, then so be it. But please don't all of a sudden start claiming that the election was rigged and other such nonsense. I have always respected Sullivan for his research and insight, so this recent Quote of the Day made my jaw drop.

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PLEDGE

The other night I talked to a group of NRA-belonging, terrorist-hating Soldiers who do not plan to vote for President Bush, and I lost all the wind from my sails. If they're not voting for President Bush, the die-hard capitalist right-wingers from Oklahoma, then who will? This week I've begun to ready myself for a Bush defeat, just to be emotionally prepared. To be honest, I'm disappointed that I'm not more optimistic, but I just see so many factors working against President Bush.

The president plays a major role in my life. Whoever he is, he will be my husband's commander-in-chief and will determine a lot about our life over the next four years. And he will be due the respect that his title deserves. As MAJ Winters said in Band of Brothers, "We salute the rank, not the man."

I therefore take Dean Esmay's pledge:

Now here is my interesting question: I've made myself some friends among conservatives by speaking this way. But I do find myself wondering: how many of you on the right will embrace such a philosophy if John Kerry should carry the election in November?

I don't want to hear why you think it won't happen. Indulge me: pretend it might. How many of you will have the patriotism to say, "I disagree with many of his policy directions, I do not think he is conducting our foreign policy in the right way, but I will do my best to get behind him and support him until elections come around next time?"

I'm genuinely curious. For that is the stance I intend to take. I will refuse to call him traitor, loser, liar, incompetent. He will be my President, my Commander In Chief, the Chief Executive of a great nation, elected by the will of a majority of the electors in these 50 great united States. So even if he does things I disagree with in conducting foreign policy, I will say, "I respectfully disagree with the President's directions, but I will do my best to express my dissent respectfully and hope that I am mistaken and that he has made the proper decisions after all."

That's my pledge. How many of you will take a similar one?

I will make that pledge, as I have already pledged before. But I also echo Bunker's dismay:

As long as Kerry, if elected, acts like a President I will support him as one. Too bad Dubya wasn't given that opportunity.

MORE TO GROK:

And it's a good thing I found out about this Vietnam video before he became president, so there's still time to laugh at what a douche he is! Seriously, it's been three hours and I'm still giggling.

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BLEAT

Hilarious Bleat today. Trip to IKEA: done it myself, many times. Chili Cheese Burrito petition: signed it with my husband's name, since it's his favorite Bell item. And I can't decide if I laughed harder at this paragraph

This is why I am not completely undone by the news that it may take a while to fully electrify Iraq. It took DirecTV ten attempts to fix one dish, and no one was shooting at the techs.

or this one

I like my union; they've backed me up when I was in a corner. I just wish they didn't force me to subsidize pictures of the president standing in a sack of shit, that's all. Is that too much to ask?

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I'm hooked on Lileks.

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KERRY

(via LGF) I wish all those people who spent eight bucks and two hours on Fahrenheit 9/11 would spend 12 minutes watching the Kerry On Iraq Documentary. I heard one person say that Moore's movie made President Bush look incompetent; well, Republicans can put together a series of clips that makes Kerry look just as bad.

MORE TO GROK:

Apparently Kerry already put together his own movie, which makes him sound like a complete tool. I can only imagine what my husband would say if I asked him what he'd think of a soldier reenacting glory scenes for film. Cripes.

(My brother and I used to make fake documentaries about him as a basketball player, with me as the announcer and interviewer. That seems really dorky to me now, and we were 9 and 7 when we did it. I can't believe Kerry was doing these things when he was an adult.)

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SHARPTON

I can't find a script online, but this morning I caught a few minutes of Al Sharpton's speech at the DNC. He was talking about how he hopes people have learned this year that anyone can rise up from welfare or a broken home to run for President of the United States, and the crowd went wild.

How much money does John Kerry have again?

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July 28, 2004

POLLSTER

I read that stuff about 40% of Canadian teens saying the US is a "force for evil". Whatever. But I was interested in this part of the article:

“What they’re reacting to is a sense that the U.S. is belligerent,” said the pollster who conducted the phone survey, Greg Lyle. “The U.S. is sort of bellicose, warmongering [and has] this sort of cowboy diplomacy.”

But former Canadian diplomat Martin Collacot says the teens are responding to cues from their government, the media and their teachers.

How about they're responding to cues from the pollster? I hope this quote was taken out of context, because when the pollster himself thinks Americans are warmongers, it might have an effect on the way he words his questions or interprets his data. Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe 40% of Canadian kids really are that ignorant without any cues at all.

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#17

Several people have written me to point out that I made it all the way up to #17 on John Hawkins' Top 40 Blogs. When I saw that, I was as flabbergasted as you! Oda Mae wrote in my comments section recently that I should be proud of the things I say on my blog, but I don't really think I'm all that interesting. I still can't believe anyone reads my stuff, much less people like SGT Hook who are deployed and should have much higher priorities.

But anyway, people do come here, and I certainly appreciate it. Thanks for helping me try to grok.

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July 27, 2004

COMEDY

My friend's husband bought a bootleg copy of Fahrencrap 9/11 in Iraq. He said he watched it three times and laughed his ass off the whole time. When I heard that, I managed a bemused smile: I'm amazed with this guy's confidence to laugh in Michael Moore's face. I've spent so much time getting angry about this movie that it was refreshing to hear that one soldier thought Fahrencrap 9/11 was a comedy.

Too bad not all soldiers are reacting the same way...

Michael Moore has never claimed to support the troops, but a lot of Americans who have gone to see this movie are the same ones who "support the troops but think the war was wrong". To those viewers, I say congratulations: you've now put $100 million in Moore's pocket and doubt and pessimism in our servicemembers' minds. Well done.

(via LGF)

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July 26, 2004

CRIME

My German co-worker has insisted on several occasions that my American co-worker and I are much better off living in Europe than in the US because in Europe we're away from all the crime. Nevermind that my co-worker hails from Phoenix and I from central Illinois and that we've managed to steer pretty clear of crime. Nevermind that her view is skewed because her experience in the US is from living in Detroit. And nevermind that "the US is full of crime" is another one of those lore statements that people toss around. In fact, England is pretty much screwed. (If you just want the money quote, head to Rishon Rishon; the full set of articles can be found at Steyn Online.) And nevermind that the most dangerous place I've ever lived was my neighborhood in France, where kids threatened to rape us in the phone booths and public masturbation was the norm. Creepy stuff.

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HATE

Just a quick link via RWN: Bush-haters do Kerry no favors

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