Friday, February 04, 2005

Turkey Shoot

Today's Sacramento Bee (print edition, not the on-line edition) had on page 12 an article titled "General rebuked: he said it's 'fun' to shoot people". Being interested in things military, I read the article, which I noted was copied directly from the LA Times, arguably the left coast's (and possibly the entire nation's) most left leaning daily newspaper.

And yes, I say that as if leaning left is a bad thing.

Anyway, the gist of the article was correct. Marine Lt. General James Mattis was quoted as saying "It's fun to shoot some people", while speaking at a forum at the U.S. Naval Institute, which was hosted by many top U.S. defense contractors.

The Marine General is quoted as saying, "Actually it's quite fun to fight 'em, you know. It's a hell of a hoot. It's fun to shot some people. I'll be right up front with you, I like brawling."

Further, "You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them."

Granted, the statement is a bit candid, but this from a General in the U.S. Marines, the best, most effective (and let's not forget violent and efficient) fighting force the planet Earth has ever seen. Not all that shocking, in my book.

General Mattis' boss said, "Lt. Gen. Mattis often speaks with a great deal of candor. I have counseled him concerning his remarks and he agrees he should have chosen his words more carefully." Further, "While I understand that some people may take issue with the comments made by him, I also know he intended to reflect the unfortunate and harsh realities of war."

But I guess there are those that find the General's statement more shocking that I do.

For instance, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, who's director is quoted as saying "We do not need generals who treat the grim business of war as a sporting event", and " These disturbing remarks are indicative of an apparent indifference to the value of human life."

Huh? The marines that did their best to feed the poor and sick in Somalia, and helped distribute food to thousands in Indonesia after the recent tsunami, and worked tirelessly to help stop the ethnic strife and feed the poor and hungry in Bosnia, AND fed and clothed the Afghan citizens after the battles they fought....the marines that never EVER leave one of their own behind, dead or alive..... these marines are indifferent to the value of human life.

Uh huh.

Perhaps we should leave teaching on the value of human life to the Taliban. You remember how they taught compassion and the value of human life by executing evil woman at the soccer stadium in Kabul before the war for not wearing their burkas, and by tearing down the thousands of years old Buddhist statues, and who's religious police patrols killed dissenters in the streets of Afghan cities without so much as a second thought, just because they didn't close their shops for evening prayers?

The idiocy of the American media and our irrational obsession with "tolerance" drives me nuts.

I'm glad the General's boss "reprimanded" him with a slap on the wrist that was probably delivered with a chuckle over a couple of beers. America needs people like Lt. Gen. James Mattis to fight our wars. We need warriors to go to war. We need brawlers. We need kick-butt men who will do what it takes to defend me and my kids from the likes of the Taliban and others who would kill me and my kids without a second thought.

I can imagine Col. Jessup's quote from the movie "A Few Good Men" coming right out of the mouth of a man like Gen Mattis:

" existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves (American) lives. You don't want the truth because, deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that (battlefield), you need me on that (battlefield). We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You (the media, liberals, peace-protesters, etc) use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a (person) who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said "thank you" and went on your way. Otherwise I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post."

I'm not a fan of war by any means, but I am a big fan of winning the wars we fight. Agree with me or not, I'm glad men like Gen. Mattis are fighting for my side.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

FireFox Web Browser

My daughter has been griping about Microsoft Explorer for a while. For some reason, she thinks it's the worst web browser ever made, etc, etc.... She just hates all things Microsoft.

Well, she heard somewhere about a new browser, called Firefox. At my daughter's suggestion, I downloaded Firefox, a web browser from Mozilla.

I've been using Firefox about a week now, and I have to say, I'm impressed. Very much so. Firefox seems to be a full-featured browser, capable of everything MS Explorer is capable of, only it does it much faster. Web-pages literally load up quicker than when I use MS Explorer.

It's gotten good reviews from several major organizations, such as the Wall Street Journal, and USA Today. I'm pretty happy with it.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Phantom Of The Opera

Saw Phantom of the Opera, the movie, yesterday, with my daughter Lindsey. I wasn't too excited about it. I've never fancied myself a fan of opera, or musicals in general for that matter. Lindsey has been wanting to see it since it came out around Christmas, so since it's free anyway, I decided to take her. She was very excited. I was happy that she was excited, and I was glad to take her. Good deal all the way around.

I'd never seen the play, or read the story, so I didn't really know what the movie was about, except the bare outline we all know, about a guy who falls in love with a lady singer, and then bad things happen. So as I sat down and the movie started, I yawned and settled in for a few hours of mindless escapism.

Two plus hours later I walked out of the theater, absolutely blown away.

Incredible, amazing, fantastic... all good descriptive words, but not good enough for how much I enjoyed myself. Soaring music. Spectacular music! Great, passionate acting. Wonderful cinematography and sets. It is a faithful rendition of Andrew Lloyd Weber's theatrical version. One of the best films I've seen all year, in my opinion.

Truly a must see. A good "date" movie, too.