My random thoughts and ideas for your edification and enjoyment.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Justification For War

I just posted a lengthy piece over at WMD regarding the 17 UN Security Council resolutions that Saddam Hussein chose to ignore. I threw in some very interesting terrorism UN resolutions as well, while tying it all up with the humanitarian crisis Saddam created. WARNING: it is a LONG piece, but if you're tired of hearing how this was an "unjustified" war, you'll want to check it out.

Saturday, September 27, 2003

How I Became A Conservative

I was having an email conversation with Eric the other day in which he said something that has sparked my interest in doing this piece. He said (and I paraphrase) that with my background I should be a liberal (or Democrat). I agreed that "usually" people who come from where I came from are liberal and that in fact at one time in my life I was.

It took a long time for me to finally realize that the principles I hold so dear and that the values that I have are not represented by the Democrats. I listened, for the longest time, to those who said that I should do what is best for me over doing what is best (in my mind) for others AND me. I believe that it is important to be an individualist. I believe that it is important for every American, regardless of race, creed, gender, or sexual preference (or the multitutde of other minorites I've left off this short list) to have a voice. I believe, above all, that self reliance is the key to the pursuit of happiness.

You see, I was born and raised on the east side of Dayton, Ohio. I come from an urban area. When I went to college, my suburban friends used to say I lived "downtown" even though downtown was over a mile away from my home. I grew up living among the poor. I didn't think so at the time, but I was poor too.

My parents were divorced when I was four years old. My mother worked hard to put myself and my younger sister through Catholic schools. At those private schools, I learned about values as well as mathermatics, reading, and writing. I learned about charity; about giving (and not just money - I gave my time in addition to my meager resources) to those who were less fortunate than I. (And I'm not asking to be elevated to the status of hero because of my acts of kindness. I'm merely stating my background.)

So here I am a kid in the slums of urban chaos (and it wasn't always like that either, the longer I stayed, the worse it got); my neighbors varied from drug users/dealers to welfare lifers to relatively well off "urban real estate tycoons." I was one of the under-priveleged that the liberals are fond of "protecting."

My next door neighbors (there were two familys that lived in the house that I am about to storytell about) were the case study for my turning to conservatism. The first family was a single mother of two (an older daughter and a younger son). She moved from job to job and had little money. She let her children run loose on the streets. Her daughter was rather promiscuous and her son got involved in drugs. (Later, the son would break into my home to steal what little we had so he could buy more drugs. He was convicted and ordered to pay restitution. We've seen less than $100.) The second family was another single mother, this time with three or four kids (I sort of lost count because the kids started having kids) on welfare. To perpetuate the cycle of dependence on the "free ride," the daughters starting having children before they got out of high school. The system, in fact, actually encourages it without having meant to do so.

From my experience, there are two kinds of liberals: those who come from suburbia who feel guilty about what they have and want to feel good about themselves for their charity and those from the urban areas who take advantage of those who worked hard and worked smart so they could get something for nothing. It boils down to the fact that welfare, unemployment, and government assistance was designed to be a safety net, not a lifestyle. I saw my neighbors using the good intentions of others to their advantage and offering nothing in return for the investment.

Welfare as a lifestyle is not healthy for America. That is my opinion. I found that others felt the same way and latched on. I have my disagreements with some conservative policy, (as all free-thinking Americans should realize that there will never be a group who thinks entirely as you as an individual does) but have found that for the most part, it is the conservatives that have the right answer for what plagued my neighborhood. If you feed a man a fish, you feed him for the day; but if you teach the man to fish, you've fed him for a lifetime. The man isn't dependent on you for his survival. Everyone is capable of achieving whatever it is that they are willing to work for. There are more opportunities in this country than anywhere else in the world. That is why significantly more foreigners come to our shores looking to pursue the American Dream than Americans leaving it to pursue something else.

In the end, I turned to conservatism because I felt better about myself and my place in the world when it was clear to me (through the conservative viewpoint) that I am responsible for my pursuit of happiness rather than the government's responsibility to regulate my happiness (or lack thereof).


Thursday, September 25, 2003

What's Happening Today?

Well, another fine day in paradise...okay, just work. Really, it's not as bad as I portray it sometimes. Those of you who know me really well, know how I like to exaggerate a bit. I'm wearing a tie today (more on that in a bit), which I used to do a lot when I was in college because I was supposed to project the image of a teacher (that and I was very active in student government and had a LOT of high level meetings with people who took you more seriously if you looked like you took yourself seriously). Now, though, it is usually a golf shirt and khakis and the culture shock of me wearing a tie has profound implications to my co-workers who immediately assume tht I have a job interview somewhere.

The real reason I am wearing a tie today is that I am going to a viewing of my roommate's grandmother who passed away last weekend. It is tough to lose someone you love. And Doug is managing just fine; he knows that he has a good group of friends that he can count on for love and support. We're there for him as he has always been there for us. Doug, if you tune in today, we love ya buddy...

Once we cut through the crap and get to the meat of it, the exchange between Weapons of Mass Discussion and Right to be Left has been rather fun. I have always enjoyed real and honest debate of issues and policies. And I am finding that I am learning quite a bit as we go as well. It has been very rewarding work and I value and cherish the time we've spent on it. I encourage anybody who might stumble by here to check them both out and make up your own minds...that's why and how democracy works!

Well, enough rambling from me for the day...


Wednesday, September 24, 2003


Just got my 401(k) summary for the last period and there are NO minus signs on it anywhere!

I just had to share my good news with the world as soon as I possibly could!!!

Thanks for caring... : )


Barry Larkin

Barry has had a great career with the Reds, his hometown team. He didn't get paid a whole lot (more than me, but not more that say Alex Rodriguez) when he was THE talent. The Reds resigned Larkin three years ago giving him a silly $9 million a year for three years. Now Larkin is crying that he wants more money to "play" next year. In his 18 year career (stat-boy, check me on that), Larkin has spent SIX YEARS on the Disabled List. You won't make Hall of Fame numbers on the DL. And Larkin will deflate his numbers if he continues to play. There is a time and place when a player has to hang 'em up...that time for Barry Larkin is now.

Monday, September 22, 2003

Monday Madness

Well, another Monday is upon us again... Same crap, different week... Pretty exciting, eh?

Why Friends Shouldn't Bring Personal Baggage To Public Discussions

As you may know, there has been something af a battle brewing between two of my friends who have very different views on the world. Eric, the liberal, believes he is right but has a tendency to bring personal stuff out in the open instead of sticking to the issues. Mark, the conservative, has a tendency to take the bait and return fire. They both have pretty nasty tempers when they want to...and they both take things personally that they probably shouldn't. I'm not any better mind you...Eric and I got in to it pretty bad awhile back for similar reasons.

My advice: If people want to discuss issues, stick to the issues. Leave the personal attacks out of it. Friends trust each other with things that they don't trust others with. Such things shouldn't be used against each other in public.


While I'm dancing around the issues, I feel really bad that we ruined Eric's birthday celebration. Apparently, he didn't have plans on his actual birthday and we didn't exactly give him his "day" on Friday. I feel really bad about that even though I'm not a big birthday celebratin' kind of guy.

But, at least I remembered Eric's birthday. I totally forgot about my friend Tom's birthday until he showed up at our apartment Saturday afternoon.

Gotta get batter at this stuff...people will think I don't care...


Friday, September 19, 2003

Threat Matrix

Watched the series premiere of this new show last night. While the characters are likeable, I find that there are too many of them to care about all of them just yet. The story seems a bit too fantastic for my sense of reality, but it is the kind of show that I like. Needless to say, I'll be looking forward to seeing the show the next few weeks to see if it is going to work for me.


Thursday, September 18, 2003


One of the other divisions of the company I work for lost their contract. Management says that there will be layoffs company wide. Time to further polish the old resume... Although, I am rather senior but not too senior in seniority... I'm concerned, but not worried at this point.


Thursday Thoughts

The Core

Finally got around to watching The Core. While it isn't the world's greatest movie, I liked the concept. The DVD presentation looked pretty good. I'm looking forward to checking out the special features and deleted scenes.

Enterprise: Season Three

We got to see episode two last night. Captain Archer's sudden transformation ito aggresive commander is still a little off, but I can see where it is going. T'Pol's un-Vulcan-like behavior continues...that emotionalism that is too close to the surface is just not working for me. The story is progressing nicely though.

West Wing

Finally, a Republican in the White House! But I can see already that they are going to make him into an unsavory character. How fair and balanced of them... The show is still pretty good even if I don't agree with the politics of those making it. Last night, we saw the repeat of the season finale in which the President's daughter is kidnapped. I'm fired up to see the resolution of that crisis!


Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Wednesday Wackiness

It has been a busy few days at work so I haven't had much chance to write a whole lot. Sorry...


Looking forward to a new episode of Enterprise tonight on UPN and we are getting closer and closer to the new season of West Wing on NBC. Last week's season opener of Enterprise was pretty good and I think it bodes well for recovery of the series. I'm not sure that this season can save the franchise, but it sure is a step in the right direction.

I've been busy working on stuff for WMD, so check out Mark and I's latest bits...

On the work front, today is Dawn's last day...so with Angie getting fired and Dawn quitting...let's just say it is going to be an adventure around here for awhile. Even I have stepped up the search a bit...

That's all for now...just a quick update, I know...I promise, dear readers, that I will get in here soon with something a bit more meaty.


Thursday, September 11, 2003

9/11 Reflections

I pledge allegiance...
To the flag...
of the United States of America...
And to the republic...
For which it stands...
One nation...
Under God...
With Liberty...
And Justice...
For all.

God Bless America


Wednesday, September 10, 2003


I finally got a chance to read Eric's review of Chicago. I must say that Eric has really outdone himself yet again. Another great review!


Over at WMD, Mark G. and I are going to devote the day's posts to the tragedy that defined our President, shaped his foreign policy, and united the nation.

I can't believe it has been two years already. We've accomplished a LOT but still have so much more to do to defeat the evil that threatens us even to this day.

We shall overcome...with persistance, dedication, determination, knowledge, wisdom, courage, and strength...

God Bless America...Keep us strong.


Tuesday, September 09, 2003


I'm back in the saddle again after a few days off. I sure needed to have my batteries recharged...especially with all the crap I've been dealing with at work.

The convention was good. Got to hang out with some very cool people: Mira Furlan (Delenn of Babylon 5), Julie Caitlin Brown (also of B5 fame), Richard Herd (John from V), Dominic Keating (Lt. Reed on Enterprise) and the living legend (at least for another few days) James "Scotty" Doohan from the original cast of Star Trek.

I took Monday and Tuesday off to recover from the show. Basically I lounged around the apartment catching up on my pile of unwatched DVDs. Finally watched Chicago...now I have to check out Eric's review on DVD Verdict. I'd have to say that if they were really considering John Travolta for Gere's role, they were on crack. I just can't see it all. Gere was bad enough... I was pleasantly surprised by both Catherine Zeta Jones and Renee Zellwiger. Even Queen Latifah wasn't too bad. The deleted number with Latifah and Jones was pretty good, but I can see why it was cut...

Anyway, that's about all I got for now...

Tune in tomorrow for another episode. Same Bat Channel. Same Bat Time.

Friday, September 05, 2003

Work Issues

As you may or may not know, dear readers, the number of collegues that I am working with is shrinking while the pile of work on my desk is growing. Management is leaning in the direction of NOT bringing in additional personnel. Also, they are considering a dangerous idea in regards to workload and accountability...they want to take everybody's workload and throw it in a pile and have everybody just dig in. Sounds like I'll be doing other people's work to me. And I don't like that idea one bit.

Weekend Plans

The gang is headed to Cleveland for the Star Trek convention. Should be tons of fun as the SOC is working the show.

I'm really pretty tired today, so I think we'll sign off a little early this week...

Thursday, September 04, 2003


Management made the call at 2:00PM. I couldn't be happier. But we now have to figure out how to get the workload covered permenantly and they aren't wanting to add additional manpower...

Angie Update: No Angie yesterday or today. She is still "sick." ARGH!

I don't understand why management hasn't taken real action in this matter yet. Oh well...


Tuesday, September 02, 2003

The Angie Update

I knew I forgot something important...

She isn't here today. I guess the long weekend just wasn't long enough for her liking.


What Office Space Character Are You?

I'm Post-Hypnotized Peter...go figure...

Post-Hypnotized Peter

What Office Space character are you?
brought to you by Quizilla
The All Sex Edition (?)

In my web research for Weapons of Mass Discussion the last week, I came across a few articles that were just too good to pass up, but not really appropriate for WMD. So I decided to put them here...

Bride's Mother Attacks Stripper

A 52-year-old woman has pleaded guilty to assaulting a male stripper after she refused to pay him for what she says was a paltry performance at her daughter's bachelorette party. This story is by the Associated Press.

This has got to be a good start to a lifetime with the in-laws...

Mom Accused of Stripping for Boys

A Pennsylvania woman was arrested after allegedly buying her son and 3 of his friends beer and stripping for them in a hotel in an attempt to make up for a failed birthday trip to ride go-carts. This story is by the Associated Press.

This child is ruined for life...but his buddies will be over a LOT more often, I'll bet...

And finally...

Extreme Sport - Rubber Sex Doll Racing

Extreme sports enthusiasts in Russia have been racing down rapids on inflatable dolls. This story was posted on Ananova.com.

I can't WAIT to see this on ESPN... Maybe FoxSports will pick it up and 54321's Leann Tweeden will participate...

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