Daily Archives: June 24, 2002

Bush Calls for New Palestinian Leaders (washington…

Bush Calls for New Palestinian Leaders (washingtonpost.com)

Sounds like a good idea to me.

“When the Palestinian people have new leaders, new institutions and new security arrangements with their neighbors, the United States of America will support the creation of a Palestinian state, whose borders and certain aspects of its sovereignty will be provisional until resolved as part of a final settlement in the Middle East,” Bush said.

In other words, we support the idea of a Palestinian state in principle, but since none of this is going to happen in our lifetimes we’ll never have to actually deal with one.

Kremlin Site Vulnerable to Attack Putin’s web p…

Kremlin Site Vulnerable to Attack

Putin’s web page is still standing strong, but Wired says it’s vulnerable. I’m surprised it’s lasted this long. Of course, it’s in Russian, so as far as I know the text says “White Hot Communist Chick Action”.

CNN.com – Tanzania train crash ‘kills 100’ – June …

CNN.com – Tanzania train crash ‘kills 100’ – June 24, 2002

The engineer thought that the brakes were going, so he stopped the train. Then he decided to back it up, only to find that the brakes had in fact gone, and it rolled 20 miles before hitting a freight train… I’ve seen footage of these passenger trains, and they just look unsafe. I wonder how old this one was. A lot of third world countries use things that might date back to the colonial era.

Parents Accused of Chaining Daughter Jesus, som…

Parents Accused of Chaining Daughter

Jesus, some people need to cut the cord. A California couple in their fifties chained their 21-year-old daughter spreadeagled to her bed to keep her from going out with a married man.

ESPN.com: MLB – Examiner: Kile likely died from bl…

ESPN.com: MLB – Examiner: Kile likely died from blocked artery

Friday night, the day before he died, Darryl Kile complained of weakness and shoulder pain. (I assume it was in the left shoulder; as a righthanded pitcher pain in that shoulder would not have been particularly noteworthy.) I’m enough of a hypochondriac to know what those are the danger signs of.

Kile’s father died of a heart attack in his mid-forties. My father had a cardiac episode a few years ago (he’s in his sixties) which was the first sign of a congenital heart problem. These things are often hereditary, and I will probably have the same problem, if I make it that long. I intend to have that checked when it’s time.

Last week, in the days before Kile’s death, I was reading The Pitch That Killed by Mike Sowell. A little background for those of you not steeped in baseball history…

The 1920 season was probably the single biggest turning point in baseball history, with the possible exception of 1947 (when Jackie Robinson joined the Dodgers, followed quickly by other black players). It was the year when Babe Ruth, who had already set the major league record for home runs in a season with 29 the previous year, shattered all expectations with 54 homers, signalling the biggest change in the way baseball was played ever seen. Late in the season, the Black Sox Scandal broke, and fans learned that the 1919 Chicago White Sox had sold the World Series to gamblers.

And Cleveland Indians shortstop Ray Chapman was killed by a pitch delivered by the Yankees’ Carl Mays.

These were the days before batting helmets (which weren’t finally accepted until the fifties). Chapman apparently froze up when the ball started coming right at him. (Mays threw very hard, but underhanded; his fastballs rose rather than sank.) Chapman was struck in the temple; he lingered a couple of days and then died. He remains the only major leaguer to die as a direct result of something happening on the field. He left behind his wife and an unborn daughter.

Amazingly, these three teams — Chapman’s Indians, the disgraced White Sox, and the Yankees of Ruth and Mays — spent the season locked in a pennant race. More amazingly, the Indians won the American League, and later the World Series. Chapman’s position was taken over by Joe Sewell, later a Hall of Famer but then just a rookie less than a year out of the University of Alabama. The Indians were convinced Chapman had been there helping them the whole time.



Just noting that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is supposedly “returning to its roots” after last season (which was just about the darkest you’ll ever see on network television), beginning with the reopening of Sunnydale High.

Court Overturns 150 Death Sentences (washingtonpos…

Court Overturns 150 Death Sentences (washingtonpost.com)

Amazingly, Scalia joined with the majority ruling that juries and not judges have to make the decision in death penalty cases. I was gaining the impression that he didn’t much care who was executed, and how and why it was done, as long as someone was being killed. Sorry, Nino, I misjudged you.