2-21-2006 The BINGO vote has spoken

On Sunday, the Australian government issued the following alert to its citizens: "We advise you to exercise a high degree of caution in the United Arab Emirates because of the high threat of terrorist attack. We continue to receive reports that terrorists are planning attacks against Western interests in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Commercial and public areas frequented by foreigners are possible terrorist targets."--Cal Thomas, Townhall.com

The current brouhaha whereas relinquishing control of six of our major shipping ports to a foreign company is fascinating. Some company owned by the government of the Untied Arab Emirates wants to purchase control of said ports from the British company that currently operates them. Yet, I keep hearing people lamenting a possible loss of control of those ports to a foreign entity. Um, the last time I checked, Britain certainly qualified as a foreign entity. The obvious conclusion one should make from all of this is that Democrats and Republicans alike trust British outfits, but not Middle Eastern outfits. Can’t say I blame ‘em much.

Much has been made of Jimmy Carter’s having come out in support of the Bush administration on this suddenly super-charged issue, but this is the same guy who relinquished control of the Panama Canal to the Chinese for no apparent reason other than his troubling propensity for snuggling up to avowed, or potential enemies of the United States. After making that short-sighted and ill-advised transfer of power and leaving our navy vulnerable to being split in half during a time of crisis, how could he possibly publicly criticize another president for doing much the same thing?

Wifey dragged me off to Sprawl Mart this afternoon (URGH!), but I took the pocket radio along and listened to Rush Limbaugh defending the administration’s decision for hours on end. I agree with him to a point. I’ve read everything I could find on this port deal, and on paper, it looks innocuous enough to be a no-brainer. This link gets you to wondering: Any port in the terrorist storm by Cal Thomas, but his is a completely one-sided argument.

It should be noted that while the Democrats keep accusing the Bushies of exaggerating the threats of terrorism from abroad to ratchet up fear amongst the voting populace and prop up their polling numbers, now they’re doing an about-face on the so-called port security issue. They need to get their constantly evolving position straight already. Are the sandal-clad terrorists a legitimate threat to the U.S. or not? Make up your freaking minds! And they wonder why the common folk don’t trust the Democrats whereas national security is concerned. Fact is, their position on national security depends on which way the prevailing political winds are blowing. You know where Bush stands. He’s on a war footing.

My take on all of this? If it were up to me, I’d err on the side of caution whereas national security is concerned. Having a country from the Middle East involved in the security of any U.S. ports sounds like a Tom Clancy geopolitical thriller in the making. It matters not what anyone from either political party says or thinks. What matters is what we think. So, what do you think?

Do you want foreigners in charge of any aspect of our security?

I don’t.

Can the Shiites resist the urge to do to the Sunnis what they had done to the Shiites for generations? Namely, kill them whenever they feel the need to? Maybe, maybe not. The future of Iraq rides on that lone question. Will they hold their noses and work together for the good of all involved, or will they reduce the country to sectarian violence that can spiral things out of control faster than you can point to Syria on a map when the question of where the Russian Spetsnaz forces moved Saddam’s WMDs to.

The control of two large regions of Iraq were recently turned over to the Iraqi security folks to patrol, and the U.S. forces have been reduced to that of a rapid deployment role. So far, things have been relatively peaceful, but corpses have been showing up here and there.

I’m of the opinion that the current course of action is the correct course. Train those security forces, bolster their numbers, and put ‘em in charge of wide swaths of the country. Most importantly, they need major improvements in the areas of command & control, and logistics. But once the U.S. military deems them to be of adequate strength to police their own country, I say we pull out of there faster than druggies do when they shoot up a neighborhood bar. And if a civil war results, then maybe the United Nations and N.A.T.O. should take the bull by the horns already. Rather than passing toothless resolutions forever, maybe they start making the world a better place. That was their original charter, no?

Whether you agree with the decision to invade Iraq or not, we have given the Iraqis a better than average chance of securing a decent future for themselves. We offered them a pseudo democracy. We offered them a shot at a thriving economy. We offered them self determination. But we can’t hold their hands indefinitely. In common parlance, it’s time for them to sh*t, or get off the pot.

Sez me.

From The Chicago Tribune:

U.S. envoy warns Iraq over sectarian regime

Read the following paragraph. Trust me, that is not far-fetched. The Russians do everything they can to undermine our position in the world, and they always have. But more often than not, the Fedrule Govmint has been hesitant to point too much of that for fear of losing their support in the world community when we need it the most.

If you think politics in this country is totally screwy, geopolitics makes for some strange bedfellows more often than not. This is where the anti-U.S. apologists fall short in their foreign policy arguments. Sure, we support some despots on occasion. And so does every other major player on the global stage. It’s all politics. And while it all plays out, lots of innocent bystanders get killed. But to blame it all on U.S. policy alone is proof of a lack of understanding of the overall picture, or a clear anti-U.S. bias. Sez me.

From Newsmax.com: (nothing new with this story)

"With Iran moving faster than anyone thought in its nuclear programs," he told NewsMax, "the administration needed the Russians, the Chinese and the French, and was not interested in information that would make them look bad."

Ex-Official: Russia Moved Saddam's WMD

From the e-mail inbox Mark,

I'm a big fan of your blog. I thought you would enjoy the story about weedman.

Best Regards,

Scranton PA

Feb 21, 12:15 AM EST

Go west, Weedman: Activist says he's leaving Philly area

PEMBERTON, N.J. (AP) -- A marijuana activist who tried to change his name to NJWeedman.com is giving up on the Philadelphia region and moving to California. Ed Forchion, an activist and perpetually losing political candidate, told The Philadelphia Inquirer for Monday's newspapers that he is moving to Los Angeles.

"I've had a run of bad luck" he explained.

Since December, he has lost the right to visit his daughter, hit a deer with his truck, blew out his transmission and declared himself indigent.

He said he'll run a "cannabis" club - and provide spiritual guidance - in the Los Angeles area.

His move means New Jersey is losing one of its more unique characters. Forchion, a sometime truck driver and construction worker who lives in Pemberton Township, has become an institution in protest politics and jailhouse lawyering.

He has lit up joints in protest at the Statehouse in Trenton and on federally owned land near the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia.

After he was arrested for possession with intent to distribute more than 40 pounds of marijuana in 1997, he attempted to seek political asylum in Cuba. It did not work out. At one point, he filmed a pro-pot television commercial while on parole. Authorities heard about it and sent him back to prison, claiming he had violated terms of his release. But a judge agreed with Forchion and freed him, reasoning that he was merely exercising his free speech rights.

And there was the name-change effort, which Forchion thought might boost his name recognition on ballots. A judge denied it in 2004.

A former candidate for pretty much every public office in New Jersey, Forchion finished fifth in last year's gubernatorial race. And he did it spending only a few hundred dollars in campaign money.

The dreadlocked, self-proclaimed "pothead" told the Inquirer that he's going to have copies of his autobiography on hand in California just in case a movie mogul thinks his story would translate to the silver screen.

Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer, http://www.philly.com

Thanx for the kind words.

Weedman, heh? What political party do we think he most closely identifies with, hmmm?

The continuing Adventures of Weedman in his never-ending struggle for pot, truth, pot, social justice, pot and anything other than the American way dominated by the military/industrial/capitalist complex!!! And who, disguised as your friendly Green Party candidate, promises Access Card provided munchies, free bong hits at the polls, and an awful lot of hemp for those “enlightened” folks not beholding to the evil corporate hordes laying waste to Washington D.C.

Make note of this: “…an activist and perpetually losing political candidate…

That’s the part that these third-party candidate/activists fail to grasp. Instead of pretending you can change the entire world when seeking votes, stick to pretending you can change one teeny tiny part of it. All too often these alternative folks present themselves as the only repositories of truth, knowledge and virtue, when nothing could be further from the truth. It’s as if an arrest record is a prerequisite to changing the world for these people that still deny that pot has any long-lasting affects on their brain cells.

His autobiography? Who knows. Iffin’ some media mogul gets around to launching the Idiot Doper Network (IDN) on cable, maybe we’ll be treated to the world premiere of “Lord of the Roach Clips.”

Gee whiz. I can’t wait.

If I had to provide you with one video that would accurately portray my relationship with my little brother when we were much younger, this would be the one.

And, yes, I really did split his head open with a can of Right Guard.

Twice, in fact.

As they so often warn the young’ns in this family: “Uncle Mark used to be a big freaking prick.”

I’m good with that.

You make the call. Am I working diligently on my tax returns? Or would this be a picture of Tom McGoarty’s office at City Hall circa 2003?

Darn it. I know that overdue bill for the Holeplex is around here somewhere.

4th floor

Will somebody cut me a fu>king break already!?!

From today’s Citizens’ Voice:

WILKES-BARRE — Provincial Tower resident Norma Ritchie is worried about a dance club opening a few doors away from her building on South Main Street.

“I don’t feel this is a particularly good place for it to be,” Ritchie said Monday while preparing to play bingo. “I have some doubts about it after the kinds of things that happened on the next block of South Main Street at Cafe Metropolis.”

‘Scuse me for saying, but Skinhead USA rarely, if ever, dances to Depeche Mode, Tony Basil, or Wang Chung. Or was it, Chung my Wang? I dunno. No matter though.

So what’s this? We don’t want those young folks too close to the old folks? With all due respect, the young folks can drive this area to greater heights, while the old folks had their chance and failed to do so. Sorry, but there it is.

If any of our council folks get to pandering to any of this sort of gibberish for votes, I am going to stalk the lot of them with a can of Cheese Whiz. Or Silly String. Or a super soaker. Whatever. Whatever’s cheaper.

Holy flying monkeys, Batman! The long-elusive, but within our reach progress now has the old folks worried for their safety??? In a building that gets locked-down, no less? Forget those dangerous bicycles, we might be banning anyone under 60 years-old from participating in downtown Wilkes-Barre, if the likely voters have their backward way.

The BINGO vote has spoken.

Ignore them. The 5,000 or so college kids in this city demand as much.

And so do I.

Dang me. Dang me. Buy me a rope for a dime and hang me

Don’t even get me going about my visit to Sprawl Mart today. Wifey forces me to take her there. All I know is, if she runs off to Las Vegas with one of those illegal aliens turned landscapers, I’m gonna replace her with some one-legged Gorgo of a woman that has a current drivers license. At that point, all other priorities will be rescinded. Sex? Who cares. Looks? Not a concern. A valid drivers license? Now there’s my kind of woman.

Honey? Can you stop on yer way back and grab me a pallet of 30-packs? Love ya.

Don’t repeat any of that.