Left of Center: By Yukkione: July 2006
Whats up with Israel?
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Time : 10:23 AM

Feeling much better today and more my old happy/pissed off self! My doc got me on some steroids and the pain is way down. Speaking of pain... what the hell is up with Israel? What is up with the media and all the western governments who are making excuses for the bombing of civilians and the crossing of borders by the Israeli military? The US is so behind most every other country in getting our people out of Lebanon, and then to say they need to pay back the government to stay on the ship. (looks like this may have changed but we will see) The problem here is language... the word defense has been distorted beyond comprehension. Of course Israel has the right to defend herself against attack. But bombing civilian areas, and perpetrating a non stop fear campaign on two civilian populations has nothing to do with defense of their country. Yes those soldiers were abducted, but abduction are deal with by negotiation and good detective/ special operation work. Hezbollah is not Al Queda! They condemn the tactics and disregard for life that Al Queda displays. Sure they are not “choir boys”, but they were created in a time when Israel was occupying their land. What we need is an end to the missiles and artillery on both sides. International peace keepers need to be sent in and those soldiers need to be returned. This madness has to stop.

posted by Yukkione at 10:23 AM | Permalink | 34 comments
Update
Monday, July 17, 2006
Time : 3:19 PM

Hello everyone. I just wanted to post here and tell you that I am recovering from my operation slower than I expected I would. Apparently my body does not like all the hardware installed in my spine and is continually producing inflammation in the area. It is causing me a great deal of pain. I'm often reminded of the line in the movie Hellraiser when the pinhead guy says, “ Your suffering will be legendary, even in hell!” Suffice it to say that writing about shit is way down at the bottom of my list. But I will as I can be posting about what matters and I hope that you all bear with me and continue your visits which are really appreciated. I read all you say and while I can't always reply, it gives me things to think about.

posted by Yukkione at 3:19 PM | Permalink | 14 comments
Thursday, July 13, 2006
Time : 10:31 PM

Today I read an piece written by Jason Gibbs of the Las Cruces Sun-News about a recent missile intercept test at the White Sands missile range. (Story here) Essentially the test of the THAAD system was designed to use powerful radar and super accurate targeting to make one missile strike an incoming “enemy” missile that carried a simulated WMD payload. The purpose of which is to destroy it high enough above the ground, and with enough force to eliminate both the missile and any chance that the payload could affect targets on the ground. Our anti missile systems are based on our ability to calculate an arching trajectory from an enemy launch pad or ship to a target on American or ally soil. Once the path of the incoming missile is triangulated and plotted, interceptor missiles are sent to actually strike them out of the sky at a safe distance from us. Now of course, calculating all the variables for an incoming intercontinental ballistic missile is difficult beyond belief, but we have actually been having some level of success doing so. Unlike the Patriot anti missile system deployed in the gulf region... Some of the THAAD intercepts actually happened. This is great right? Makes us so much safer right? Well worth the billions (probably trillions) we have poured into “Star Wars” since the Reagan era? Hmm, Well maybe not... there is a kink in the fabric, a fray in the line, a fly in the ointment... You see the Russians, and some think the Chinese, have developed ICBM's that ZIG ZAG... thats right.. they don't fly straight like our brilliant scientists want them to. So there is no nice clean flight trajectory to triangulate. No, way to predict the path and therefore no way to intercept. Our Trillion dollar project has effectively been antiquated before it ever left the lab. All those dollars spent by politicians, military experts and scientists, who have less foresight than my seven year old playing me in a game of chess. I wrote Mr. Gibbs who wrote the original article about his thoughts on this, and he was kind enough to promptly respond. He said:
Mr. Shilliday
You make a good point. My understanding (limited, certainly) is that THAAD is one part of a larger puzzle that will eventually address the more advanced incoming missiles. I freely admit my forte is writing, and I posess very little military knowledge. But I can say without reservation the fireworks were stunning.
Wish I could offer you a more intelligent response, but the technology is truly beyond me.
I do, however, deeply appreciate you taking the time to read the article and especially appreciate the fact you took time to respond.
Best regards,
Jason Gibbs
I appreciate his candor. I understand the military often want people seeing their successes, but often offer little in the way of whole explanations. Again, thank you Jason.
What can be said of this system? Is it truly going to make us safer? Would this money being spent on systems like THAAD be better spent on things like scanning all incoming ports for nukes stashed in shipping containers.

posted by Yukkione at 10:31 PM | Permalink | 14 comments
Syd Barrett: Pink Floyd Founder Dies
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Time : 11:44 AM

Syd Barrett, at the age of 60 died several days ago. He had been born Roger Keith Barrett, but was know as just Syd. Barrett retired early from Pink Floyd because of mental health problems and to a lesser degree drugs. Syd wrote song such as Emily Play and Bike. His songs contained childlike lyrics and were musically diverse.

posted by Yukkione at 11:44 AM | Permalink | 11 comments
Bronze Star ok for Fallen Soldier, but Symbol of His Religion not Allowed on His Memorial.
Friday, July 07, 2006
Time : 11:22 AM


Sgt. Patrick D. Stewart, a practitioner of Wicca, and ancient religion died and was posthumously given the Purple Heart and Bronze Star.
The article I will quote here mention the following information, but I suspect the actula numbers are much higher.

Wicca is one of the fastest-growing faiths in the country. Its adherents have increased almost 17-fold from 8,000 in 1990 to 134,000 in 2001, according to the American Religious Identification Survey. The Pentagon says that more than 1,800 Wiccans are on active duty in the armed forces.
Symbols for 38 other faiths are accepted for memorials and Federal courts have recognized Wicca as a religion since 1986. Part of the problem is that many ignorant individuals think that Wiccans are involved with Satanic worship and rituals. In fact Wicca predates the Judeo/Christian Mythology, and the concept and belief in Satan is not part of their belief structure. Most of Wiccan rituals revolve around the cycles of nature, such as equinoxes and phases of the moon. Wiccans often pick and choose among religious traditions, blending belief in reincarnation and feminine gods with ritual dancing, chanting and herbal medicine.

Retired Army Chaplain William Chrystal, a United Church of Christ minister who was chaplain of Stewart's National Guard unit, has strongly backed Roberta Stewart's request.
"It's such a clear First Amendment issue, I can't even conceive of why they are not granting it, except for political reasons," he said. "I think the powers that be are afraid they'll alienate conservative Christians if they approve a symbol that connotes witches and warlocks casting spells and brewing potions."
I would just like to say that Wiccans , and I'm sure other religions should enjoy the same right to post their religious symbols on their memorials as any other faith. These men and women did after all fight for freedom of religion, freedom of speech and the right to peacefully gather. When we deny the rights of the few, we tarnish the good of the majority. Please read this short article and please leave a comment on this one. Thank you.

posted by Yukkione at 11:22 AM | Permalink | 21 comments
Post For Peace!
Tuesday, July 04, 2006
Time : 8:08 AM

I'm really tempted to start out this post for peace with making a negative statement. I want to say how lazy and complacent todays Americans are. How fat, pussielient, ego driven, and self serving we have become. "Cell phone zombies." Zombies who don't think about death and destruction done on our behalf. Many of these folks cannot be reached.
The appeal for peace can be made in so many ways, to so many kinds of people. Some people are moved by thoughts and images of the peace rallies of the 60's and 70's. Some are motivated on a spiritual or religious level that demands in every grain of their being that they fight for peace. Others are humanists that believe in the innate right of every person to live free, and not be driven under the treads of tanks. Of course most of us have numerous reasons to promote peace, and we must remember when trying to reach those still uncommitted that their reasons to get motivated may be different. Some may be appalled by the actual cost of the war and the billions of dollars missing and unaccounted for. Some people have no knowledge of how many Iraqis we have killed in order to “liberate” them. My point is when speaking about peace, know your audience... know what would motivate them. We need all the help we can get. What have you done today? (without a call to action all your words are for naught)

Post for Peace is a blogathon. You can see the scores of other posters of at Glendas.

posted by Yukkione at 8:08 AM | Permalink | 24 comments
I'm Back!
Monday, July 03, 2006
Time : 6:07 AM

Yes indeed! After what seems like an eternity away from my LOC heads I have come stumbling back from the edge of oblivion. You see, a spinal disk in my lower lumbar had decided to be Republican light. It had dried up, calcified, and broken into sharp little pieces. My surgeon said one piece even looked a little like Joe Leiberman. Not only had the pain in my back been getting worse, but I kept getting strange thoughts about blindly supporting this war President. It had to go. I was able to find just the man to help me in the person of one Dr. Small. ( who actually stands about 6'7") Once the offending disk was removed, a semi permeable plastic donut was added to replace it, the center was stuffed with pieces of bone that had been carefully removed from my own vertebrae. This was done in order to allow the two vertebrae the disk was between to fuse together and will over time become one bone. Sometimes getting the right results is a painful and messy process. Recovering the Democratic party from the pussilient, aristocracy of do nothings will be too, but it has to be done. Next, they inserted two titanium screws into each vertebrae and each was secured to the one vertical to it with a titanium rod. (am I a cyborg now? my kids think so..) See, once the ground work for real change is laid, there has to be strong means by which to maintain it. We don't want any creeping Hillarytosis, Reidisis, or Pelosifever, to mess things up. it's going to take about6 weeks for my incisions and tissue to heal, and about another six months for my spine to fully fuse. Already I don't feel the pain I once did, so I'm so grateful for that.

posted by Yukkione at 6:07 AM | Permalink | 14 comments
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