Monday, May 21, 2007

Star Wars 30th anniversary

Today is the 30th anniversary of the first star wars movie.
I remember standing in a line that wrapped around Lakeside
cinema in Metairie, and we got into the theater just as the storm
troopers were blasting into the rebel ship, and from those first
few laser blasts I was mesmorized.

Adulthood never demesmerized me, the only thing that could
shake me from liking star wars was the crappy ideas in the last
3 movies. With Jar Jar and miticlorians George lucas managed
to kill off the franchise for me, by the time the last movie came
out I watched it just to see how Anakin would get barbecued
into vader.

Hopefully soon someone will remake the movies in chronological
order for adults, and edit out the crappier notions and use all the
current special effects so that the first movie doesn't look so
clunky. I'd remake it with the focus more on Darth Vader and use
ideas like the Darth Blog, or at least make the story more consistent,
not switch from the force being a mysterious field that surrounds
us to something generated by parasites in our blood.

Monday, May 14, 2007

unbearable heaviness of being

I wonder if we're doomed to repeat Vietnam over and
over. From my position it is impossible to tell if Iraq
is vietnam, if it was vietnam from the beginning or if
by repetitive framing over and over the press has framed
the square peg of iraq into the round hole of vietnam.

With hindsight it's easier to see the mistakes that were made,
the press screeches over too many civilian casualties, so
no strict control was established over 'civilians' after the
initial invasion so the country was looted to the ground.

Some idiots playing games pull naked frat pranks on prisoners,
the scream of "torture" goes up, and we end up with a catch
and release terrorist program.

When our soldiers die, there is a drumbeat of reporting that says
how terrible that is, so our troops are kept on safe and secure
bases while a civil war rages in the cities of Iraq.

All these things occur while time passes and life goes on.
Now people are saying the war is lost, instead of too much
micromanagement of president johnson, we have mismanagement
of president bush. It seems like vietnam has repeated again.

I would say that two things have been the same in Iraq as in vietnam,
there was no formal declaration of war voted on by the congress
in either conflict, and there was no response from the government
when the press reported on events as if they were the worst that
could happen.

Every event in the press will always be reported as if it is the worst,
just so that they can attract readers, viewers and listeners. If there is
a tropical storm hitting texas in July, then it will be reported as the
worst tropical storm to make landfall in Texas since george bush was
elected, even if it's the only one to hit in the past ten years. Because
bad events happen every day somewhere, the news
is reported as "bad things are happening everywhere", when in reality
it is "bad things are happening somewhere". This is an example of
the extreme value fallacy

War is hell. War is a dirty business, and civilian deaths, stupidity
and foolishness are some of the horsemen that always ride with war.
The lesson for the next war is that we must have an actual
declaration of war before we do anything so that various idjits
can't come out after and say they didn't vote for war, they voted
for peace with rolling airstrikes, cruise missiles and no casualties.

We can then fight the war on all fronts, on the mlitary and in the
press, and we can say that if we're going to fight we're going to
fight to win. If the press wants to go along they can, but they need
to understand that although things are bad, they aren't really the
worst that could have happened. Maybe if they would add that
fact to stories then reporting would seem more balanced.

Sunday, May 06, 2007


We had an earthquake here last night, it wasn't really
that bad but it scared the heck out of me. It started
with a poltergeist shaking of the bed, then built up gradually
over about 20 seconds until the curtains were moving, water
sloshing in the toilet bowl and the door was shaking on it's
hinges. By the time it reached that point I was up and pulling
my jeans on and looking for my wallet, then it stopped

It was scary because it seemed to be building in intensity,
and if it got worse I doubt we could make it to the
ground floor before all the buildings started to fall.
We're in a 30 year old building, so hopefully it's been
tested by previous earthquakes, and not just structurally
weakened over time.

El tiempo said it was a 6.0 but there was no damage or
injuries, so it must have been centered out in the sticks
somewhere. They said it was only felt in the taller buildings,
so if we felt it on the 5th floor, people in 25 story towers
must have been really rockin'.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Doggie picture

Here's our dog
Bianca with her
fur coat on, ready
to go outside.