Facing Down Iran by Mark Steyn, City Journal Spring 2006
What’s the difference between a hothead and a moderate? Well, the extremist Ahmadinejad has called for Israel to be “wiped off the map,” while the moderate Rafsanjani has declared that Israel is “the most hideous occurrence in history,” which the Muslim world “will vomit out from its midst” in one blast, because “a single atomic bomb has the power to completely destroy Israel, while an Israeli counter-strike can only cause partial damage to the Islamic world.” Evidently wiping Israel off the map seems to be one of those rare points of bipartisan consensus in Tehran, the Iranian equivalent of a prescription drug plan for seniors: we’re just arguing over the details. So the question is: Will they do it? And the minute you have to ask, you know the answer. If, say, Norway or Ireland acquired nuclear weapons, we might regret the “proliferation,” but we wouldn’t have to contemplate mushroom clouds over neighboring states. In that sense, the civilized world has already lost: to enter into negotiations with a jurisdiction headed by a Holocaust-denying millenarian nut job is, in itself, an act of profound weakness—the first concession, regardless of what weaselly settlement might eventually emerge.And it seems like only yesterday I was practicing my best elementary school "hide-under-the-desk-in-case-of-nuclear-attack" pose. It's been a long time since we worried, REALLY worried, about "the bomb". And now those ranting student kidnappers from 1979 are about to create one. I wonder when the peace people will get out and protest nuke proliferation again. If? And then, this:
Bush said in Washington he would discuss Iran's nuclear activities with China's President Hu Jintao this week and avoided ruling out nuclear retaliation if diplomatic efforts fail. Asked if options included planning for a nuclear strike, Bush replied: "All options are on the table. We want to solve this issue diplomatically and we're working hard to do so." The United States, which accuses Iran of seeking atom bombs, was expected to push for targeted sanctions against Tehran when it met the U.N. Security Council's other permanent members -- Britain, France, China and Russia -- plus Germany in Moscow.Any guesses as to who will stand with us on this issue?
Wis. Court Mulls Usage of Victim's Letter - Yahoo! News
MILWAUKEE - About two weeks before her death, Julie C. Jensen went to a neighbor, shaking and crying, and handed over a sealed envelope. If anything happened to her, she said, he should give it to police. She wrote that she felt her husband never forgave her for a brief affair she had seven years earlier, and that she had seen him visit Internet sites about poisoning. "I pray I'm wrong + nothing happens ... but I am suspicious of Mark's suspicious behaviors + fear for my demise," the 40-year-old woman allegedly wrote in the letter dated Nov. 21, 1998. More than seven years after the southern Wisconsin woman died from poisoning, the state Supreme Court is considering whether to allow her statements as evidence in her husband's murder trial. In addition to the letter she gave to the neighbor, Julie Jensen allegedly told her son's teacher that she had found a suspicious list of drugs and syringes her husband wanted to buy and feared her husband planned to poison her. She also left voice mails for police and told them in person of the lists, and warned them if she died, her husband was responsible, court records said. After her death, the neighbor gave the envelope to police. Julie Jensen had included photographs of some of the suspicious lists and wrote she would never take her own life because of her love for her children. Mark Jensen was later ordered to stand trial. But in March 2004, the U.S. Supreme Court overruled a 1980 case that laid out complex rules for when statements can be used without the opportunity for cross-examination. The court said the case complicated a fairly straightforward part of the Constitution, which guarantees a criminal defendant the right to confront his accusers.Let's see, the woman left a sealed envelope to be opened in case of her death. The article doesn't say, but I imagine handwriting tests were done to make sure it was hers. This woman also told her child's teacher that she feared her husband would poison her. She told the POLICE about it, for cryin' out loud! How loudly did she have to scream before somebody paid attention?
This is the neatest clock! Every minute of the day is represented by a photo depicting that time. I hate to say I could sit and watch the clock for hours, but.... The Human Clock™ - A Clock Photo for Every Minute of the Day
-Flowerbeds that need raking call me.
-Two quilts that need finishing.
-Homework. Three weeks to go this semester, and we have been given the "Final" assignment for the Lit class. I'm trying to read the stories, and pick one out for the paper, but I just can't get excited over any of them. Thankfully, it looks like I'll get my vacation the first week of May, so maybe if things go smoothly here, I'll get a chance to really apply some thought to the final. (fingers crossed)
-Taxes. (Yeah, I'm one of those last minute people, since it looks like I have to pay in to the state. THAT check gets mailed at 11:59 tomorrow night.)
-Need to get my miles in today. Amazing how out-of-shape I got over the winter, even with the trips to the gym.
Yes, I know this has been all over the Web, and in everyone's email, but I just couldn't resist when I got it in an email from #1 kid. Happy Easter, everyone!!
It's Jackson Browne night on the old iPod!! I hadn't heard this one since forever, even though it's one of my favorites from the "newer" albums. I've been listening to so much Jazz for class lately that I've been neglecting some of my favorites. Off the '93 album "I'm Alive". Yeah, you know, the one with the cover photo that made him look like an escapee from the movie "Creature from the Black Lagoon". Horrible cover shot, but the music was worth it. Have a listen to "Sky Blue and Black", too; one of his best songs after the "Late for the Sky" album. Yep, it's wussy-California-Singer-Songwriter night here!!!
You hold a life there in your hands You probably don't know Somehow your dreams became my plans Somewhere long ago Think about the things we've done and where we've been Your touch made me a king I don't want to live without your love again I'll do anything To make you see what I'm imagining To know the pleasure your smile can bring To keep the light from vanishing I'll do anything I fly this airplane upside down I walk out on the wing To see you watching from the ground I'll do anything When I see the light upon your upturned face I can hear the angels sing Don't ever let another take my place I'll do anything To make you see what I'm imagining To know the pleasure your smile can bring To keep the light from vanishing I'll do anything I make this world a place for you and me I make your happiness my responsibility To make this world the world you want to see I'll do anything When I see the light upon your upturned face I can hear the angels sing To see that no one ever takes my place I'll do anything To make you see what I'm imagining To know the pleasure your smile can bring To keep the light from vanishing I'll do anything
Just a short update on the crappiest Monday I've had in a very long time. J's funeral is tomorrow in his hometown, a small farm town just outside of Green Bay. Right now, there are eleven of us who are planning to make the two-hour drive over there. We have scrambled to cover our jobs, to make shift swaps; and the company has stretched the overtime rules and reassigned people so that we are able to do this. J always commented that he wondered how many years it would be before he felt like this small town was home. I understood that feeling--even after 25 years here, there are many times I still feel like an outsider of sorts. I wonder if he realized just how many of us thought of him as a friend. I wonder if he would have thought of this as "home" now. UPDATE: What on earth would compell a pastor to tell a grieving family and friends that "sometimes we need 'little reminders' that life is short"? Little REMINDERS???? I wanted to get up and swat that man after he made that remark. The thing that stopped me was the thought that somewhere out there, a red-headed "little reminder" named J was laughing his @$$ off. He would have loved it.
Lost a member of my crew today. He'd called in sick a couple days ago, and still didn't show up for work this morning. We had an uneasy feeling about this yesterday when we didn't hear from him, since the guy was a serious diabetic--multiple shots daily. It just wasn't like him to just not show up for work, without calling, without contact of some sort. And our phone calls and voicemails went unanswered all weekend. It just wasn't the sort of thing he'd do, but we thought maybe what we knew of his sick call was slightly confused. Maybe he was taking off the whole weekend instead of just one day. Since that's "personal medical info", we couldn't know for sure. Like I said, it was just a bad feeling. Guess we should pay attention to "bad feelings". So...today, we expressed these concerns to our boss. He was already concerned as well, and it was passed up to HR. They called to ask that a county squad be sent out to J's house to check on him. An hour later, I saw our HR manager and Union pres heading towards my booth; mill manager, production manager, and department head following along not far behind.... To make a long story short, J was found dead. No signs of foul play. Not sure how long--possibly since early Saturday morning, before anybody really would have missed him. Still, we're all doing a lot of kicking ourselves--what if we'd said something yesterday, instead of waiting till today? Maybe it wouldn't have made any difference, but....maybe it would have. The rest of the day, including a short maintenance shutdown and restart, was a blur. Tears do that, I guess. Godspeed, NotQuiteRight. I'm going to miss your cheerful "hello, young lady" (even though I'm a year older than you , you old fart!). It was good knowing you, and your great twisted self-deprecating humor. I wish I had gone out for that beer Wednesday night after all.