Daily Archives: April 7, 2004

This is so wrong

Yahoo! News – The latest fashion must-have: eyeball jewellery

A few women in Amsterdam are getting jewelry implanted in their eyeballs. You’d have to smoke a lot of pot to think that’s a good idea.

Cutting it close

CNN.com – Marines: U.S. bombed Iraqi mosque wall – Apr 7, 2004

First… I do not approve of the use of houses of worship as bases for military operations. I don’t think most Muslims would, either.

However, American forces came very close to a line today with their attack on the mosque in Fallujah. I hope they didn’t cross over it. The bombing was of an outer wall, not a wall of the building itself. However, the outer wall is considered part of the mosque. This is the sort of thing that very easily can become part of the list of outrages (real and imagined) that fuel the insurrection.

I know that this was a legitimate military target! And I know that all laws of war would consider it so. I’m just not sure that it matters. Again, fighting the guerrillas, even successfully, is not the goal of the occupation. This is essentially a hearts-and-minds campaign. If you end the careers of a hundred guerrillas only to launch the careers of a hundred more and make thousands of Iraqis their silent partners, you’re not solving anything.

Another front in the war for pettiness

City schools want to ban cell phones

Now Huntsville wants to ban (non-ringing, non-disruptive) cell phones. Why? Because there’s a petty state law in effect banning them. Is this remarkably stupid? Yep.

It also turns out that cheating was not, previously, formally banned in the rulebook. And:

Intercourse and rape on campus have long been met with expulsion, but administrators suggested that oral sex be added to the short list of indecent sex acts. There was no discussion on this item.

At least, not any discussion in public.

That Clausewitz guy

ON WAR – Book I-Chapter 1″ href=”http://www.clausewitz.com/CWZHOME/On_War/BK1ch01.html”>Clausewitz, ON WAR – Book I-Chapter 1

As I said in the comments to a post yesterday, certainly we can “win” the purely military conflict in Iraq. Certainly we will, in the sense that we are unlikely to actually lose any battles. But if the only result of American military victories is to drive more and more Iraqis into the arms of the extremists and weaken the American military and the nation’s international standing, it won’t matter that we weren’t defeated on the battlefield, because we will have lost.

Anyway, a pretty familiar quote:

24.óWar is a mere continuation of policy by other means.

We see, therefore, that war is not merely a political act, but also a real political instrument, a continuation of political commerce, a carrying out of the same by other means. All beyond this which is strictly peculiar to war relates merely to the peculiar nature of the means which it uses. That the tendencies and views of policy shall not be incompatible with these means, the art of war in general and the commander in each particular case may demand, and this claim is truly not a trifling one. But however powerfully this may react on political views in particular cases, still it must always be regarded as only a modification of them; for the political view is the object, war is the means, and the means must always include the object in our conception.

I have to question God’s priorities

nbc13.com – Entertainment – J. Lo’s Mom Credits ‘Divine Intervention’ For Slots Win

Somehow, I think that there’s a better use for the divine power than to ensure that the mother of someone who is already extremely rich and famous should win a $2.5 million gambling payout. But to each His own.

Just take the penalty

Gator just par for the course

There’s an alligator in a pond on the 13th hole of the golf course at the Country Club of Tuscaloosa. Good. Golfers, to be frank, have reproduced far beyond their natural habitats and are spreading into marginal areas. We wouldn’t want an overpopulation situation like in Japan, now, would we? Rather than sterilzation or bringing in sharpshooters, the best plan is for them to be preyed upon by natural enemies like alligators and lightning.

Take that, Bob! [hic!]

Alabama Lawmakers Designate State Whiskey

Yes, overriding the governor’s veto, the State Senate voted 19-8 that “Conecuh Ridge Fine Alabama Whiskey” (bottled in Kentucky) the official state spirit. Next: the official state prescription drug!