Day by Day

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Back in the Saddle Again

For those who live in more temperate climes, let me be the first to fill you in:

Puerto Rico is f**cking hot. More on that later.

I finished my schooling right on time. Made the Commendant's List, which is limited to those who finish with a 95% or above average. Some schools lists are the top 20% of the class, but we had sixty students, so they went with the former rather than the latter. I missed making Distinguished Honor Graduate by this much, but a Ranger beat me on the Physical Fitness test. That's not exactly a black stain on my record, if you know what I mean.

I spent most the time in the classroom, and then the last four days were in the field, applying everything I'd learned. It might be December, and you all might have snow where you live, but it was 85+ degrees down here, and humid as all hell. Not only that, but the area where we were conducting movement had grass as tall as I was, along with other vegitation that could be described as "ungodly". I managed to do everything I had to do, and get the maximum score, but I also needed three bags of IV fluid in two days. After coming back from one mission, my legs were cramping up so bad I had to walk straight-legged. I went over to the medic and just said "Stick me. Now, please." I had drank a gallon and a half of water on that mission as well, but I was sweating it out as fast as I could drink it.

And now I'm back, and seeing that I have a lot to catch up on. After reading DW's posts on the NY Slimes and the Washington Post, I feel like I have to link these two articles, just to illustrate how biased and foul the Lame-Stream media really is.

Victor Davis Hanson

For some time, a large number of Americans have lived in an alternate universe where everything is supposedly going to hell. If you get up in the morning to read the New York Times or Washington Post, watch John Murtha or Howard Dean on the morning talk shows, listen to National Public Radio at noon, and go to bed reading Newsweek it surely seems that the administration is incommunicado (cf. “the bubble”), the war is lost (“unwinnable”), the Great Depression is back (“jobless recovery”), and America about as popular as Nazi Germany abroad (“alone and isolated”).

But in the real adult world, the economy is red-hot, not mired in joblessness or relegating millions to poverty. Unemployment is low, so are interest rates. Growth is high, as is consumer spending and confidence. Our Katrina was hardly as lethal as the Tsunami or Pakistani earthquake. Thousands of Arabs are not rioting in Dearborn. American elderly don’t roast and die in the thousands in their apartments as was true in France. Nor do American cities, like some in China, lose their entire water supply to a toxic spill. Americans did not just vote to reject their own Constitution as in some European countries.

The military isn’t broken. Unlike after Vietnam when the Russians, Iranians, Cambodians, and Nicaraguans all soon tried to press their luck at our expense, most of our adversaries don’t believe the U.S. military is losing in Iraq, much less that it is wise now to take it on. Instead, the general impression is that our veteran and battle-hardened forces are even more lethal than was true of the 1990s — and engaging successfully in an almost impossible war.

Nor are we creating new hordes of terrorists in Iraq — as if a young male Middle Eastern fundamentalist first hates the United States only on news that it is in Iraq crafting a new Marshall Plan of $87 billion and offering a long-oppressed people democracy after taking out Saddam Hussein. Even al Jazeera cannot turn truth into untruth forever.

Instead, the apprentice jihadist is trying to win his certification as master terrorist by trying his luck against the U.S. Marines abroad rather than on another World Trade Center at home — and failing quite unlike September 11.

Captain's Quarters

In my post below, I ask whether the world has finally gotten the message that all people of all backgrounds want and deserve freedom, as demonstrated by the Iraqi elections. Media watches might expect that serious newspapers around the world will address the lessons to be drawn from this historic event. Not at the Paper of RecordTM, however; the message -- and the elections -- seem to have escaped the attention of the editorial board at the New York Times.

The RSS feed for the Opinion page at the Times just updated with tomorrow's articles. Here's what readers of the Times will see addressed by the opinion leaders of what was once the most influential of all American dailies:

* Don't rush to renew the PATRIOT Act (even though it's about to expire after four years)
* The Red Cross may not be motivated to fix its problems
* Chad hasn't benefited from its discovery of oil (but then again, neither have we in ANWR)
* A demand for moral clarity on torture

Wait -- perhaps one of their guests addresses it instead. Er, no. Tim Harford talks trade reform to benefit poor farmers, Robert Kennedy really likes wind power until it blocks his view of the stars (more on that later), and Pankaj Mishra writes about the West vs Islam ... in Turkey. Even behind the Times Select Firewall of Sanity, Paul Krugman forgoes his usual Chicken Littlism on Iraq in favor of discussing conflicts of interest in health care.

Did the Times miss the story? Or are they just hoping that the rest of us did?

Read both. It's a stark example of just how off-base the Lame-Stream media is with it's lies, hysterics, and unfounded accusations. Hey, have you heard how great the economy is going? If you read the NY Slimes, you wouldn't have. The economy is still red hot, as it has been for the past three years. Screaming along. Growing faster than ANY COUNTRY IN EUROPE.

But the Lame-Stream press doesn't want to print that. It might go against it's bias.

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