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Hey-o. I had a minute this morning where I felt all bad again about being righteously indignant and then Facebook suggested I “friend” the wife of an ex-boyfriend and, as I looked at the woman, it all came flooding back to me. The wretched little drama that played out publicly in a small town with people taking sides like some pathetic, redneck version of the Aniston-Jolie thing. I’m pretty sure I was the Aniston, although I’ve since become a lot more Jolie. Anyway, I was reminded how much I cried and how awful it was to see them get married, even though I’m pretty sure I didn’t want to marry him. He fell too easily for this woman and her schtick, and there was something about that that really bothered me. I mean I get that people are trying to find their thing in life, and that they break vows sometimes and are imperfect. I have a friend who went through something similar and she owned her part in it. She blamed herself and really had to work out what she had done. And I respect that. But this chick — I heard her say once that Yoko Ono was the love of John Lennon’s life. I mean come on. Read up on that relationship and you’ll know why that’s just a hokey thing to say, and I’m pretty sure she was saying it to justify her own infidelity etc. And I just wasn’t righteous enough back then not to get trampled on and I have some regrets about that. So yeah, I think I’m going to stay strong going forward. Besides, sometimes it’s just good to call it like it is. Like this guy.

I need to get moving as I have a softball game in a few hours but on the subject of Israel — it’s pretty simple y’all. Hamas threw some bombs and Israel answered. Anything else you may read about occupying forces etc is not only inaccurate but bait for suckers. Think of it this way — if a Palestinian were to move into your neighborhood and was a peaceful, law-abiding citizen who was just trying to give his kids a better life and some crazy Christian fundamentalists threw a Molotov cocktail through his window, would it bother you if he came outside and cracked a few skulls on the hoodlums? Think about it and get back to me.

Beyond that, this is great. Have a good weekend and stay righteous.

I’ve always known my family was loud and a bit out of control. Predominantly Scots-Irish and Eastern European — as well as Southern, part Catholic/part Baptist, and huge — we drink, have been known to smoke, curse, fight, tell bawdy and inappropriate jokes, yell at each other, cry, love fiercely, and try to have a really good time in this sometimes disappointing roller coaster of life. One of my sisters-in-law said when I was home last week: “this is a hard family to be heard in.” That’s true, even if you were born into it. And I like to refer to them (myself included) as “crazy” or “insane” or “offdachain”. But something hit me upon my return to DC after a week in Atlanta. We are actually quite chill compared to the manic insecurities that force me to adopt a different personality just to survive in DC. And it basically comes down to one thing: we’re not full of shit. And so much of DC is.

Now let me just say that the great parts of DC are really great. I’ve met some of the best people I know here, and frankly some of the worst people I know simply live here but aren’t from here. So I don’t want anyone to get the impression I don’t love my adopted home. I do. But upon returning to town I was immediately confronted with two things that made me realize my people back home — family and friends — are superior, at least to my sensibilities. And yes, I use the word “superior” pointedly. The first was a “friend” of mine sent me a picture of this twerp I used to know to show me how ridiculous he is now. This guy spent something like 4 years just being a complete ass, and I spent the majority of those years trying to get him to be nice to me because I was so confused as to why he felt the need to be a jerk. My bad, because it never occurred to me he was a jerk just because he sucked as a human being and I couldn’t fix that. Because he is plagued with his own manic insecurities that force him to be, the best I can determine, something of a gold digging opportunist who changes his personality — right down to how he dresses — to fit whatever crowd he thinks can get him what he wants while he wants it (what he wants changes, too). And DC has a way of sheltering and promoting that kind of loser. Just take a look at a lot of our politicians on the Hill, mostly on the left. Where I’m from, people like that have their asses kicked pretty quickly by men who can’t stomach the weakness of that kind of “integrity”. And honestly this jackass would have been better for a few asskickings. He’s clearly never had one. My hope is that now that his hero Obama is leaving office — and his progressive ideology is falling out of favor — he’ll stay true to the coward he is and just peace out and leave town. You really should, dude. Your opportunities are in Chicago or San Francisco or some place like that. Really, go.

The second was such a weird display of bitchy entitlement that I don’t even want to relive it. It made me incredibly embarrassed, depressed, and disappointed to the point that I wanted to break associations immediately so that no one who may have seen the event would ever think I had anything to do with it, even though for the most part I was just a bystander. And so I won’t go into it. Except one part of it, which I think may have been part of what set the tone for the whole thing to go down. I know I’m cryptic when I write about stuff like this, and it’s intentional to protect the innocent — and to attempt some diplomacy. So the part I’ll address is thus: look here queen bee, bitchy women, I do not cultivate relationships with you because your affinity for minion keeping in hopes of being worshipped makes me a little sick. I have many lady friends, some since nearly birth, and they are very different from one another save one very important similarity: they do not expect their friends to be their subjects, they do not consider themselves part of a court, they are strong and independent, brilliant and beautiful, and would check me in a heartbeat if I acted like they needed to bow to my authority or to the strength of my personality. So when you come into “my house” and start telling me to behave certain ways you’re likely to understand — because I’ll tell you — why you can get bent. There’s a reason I don’t come to your parties. Because I’m not afraid of being alone and prefer it over acting like you don’t piss me straight the f*ck off.

One other thing I was reminded of when I went home: almost all my childhood friends are big Democrats, if not outright progressive liberals. But being chill allows for differences of opinion.

I actually have some “professional” writing to do later, and I’m formulating what I want to say, but here, as always, are a few things I found compelling. Some are old as it’s been a while since I’ve written anything. Do with them as you like.

Uh, yeah.

But, in foreign relations, I want someone who seems to be on the ball, who looms large in the international imagination, who recognizes that his primary responsibility is to the national defense and not to the nature of domestic policy, and who understands that there is a time for partisan politics and a time for national unity — especially when it is being widely reported that American citizens have been blown out of the sky. The lattermost is a distinction that this president — a man who famously made his national debut pretending to be a uniter — has never matured into observing.

This will feature — I think — in that “professional” piece I mentioned. But I’m still trying to decide how I want to approach it…

Uh, yeah. Was talking to a friend of mine the other day who works on some of this stuff for a living and he mentioned that Israel doesn’t always do the things we want them to do. Well, yeah. Why would they really.

As slanders go, it’s almost funny, like the old paranoid delusion that George W. Bush was simultaneously an idiot and a criminal mastermind.

Just read it.

Pretty much. Look I love you American people, but back off the condemnation when the House talks about using the power of the purse. It is a reasonable and effective tool and it is within their applied powers.

Oh you dirty birds. I look forward to football season.

I want it all. Just for funsies.

Uh yeah. The weirdest is that I’m not sure they’re — en masse — aware of their ignorance. Which is a bigger problem.

Get up man.

In honor of the anniversary of the moon landing, here’s a good one from a man I’m not sure wasn’t actually an alien. He definitely had his doubts about his origin as well.

Are you a knock?

Just adding to the coozie collection. So proud of my friend. Their business is truly marvelous. Excellent product, service, environment, music, the whole shebang. And, judging by the line out the door, others know it as well. Heart bursting.

Just adding to the coozie collection. So proud of my friend. Their business is truly marvelous. Excellent product, service, environment, music, the whole shebang. And, judging by the line out the door, others know it as well. Heart bursting.

[Wrote this Wednesday. The process is instructive so I'm keeping it.] Hey ya’ll. I’m forcing myself to write because I’m not really feeling the muse so much at the moment but I know that when it hits me sometime oh, say, Saturday afternoon, I’ll be away from my computer and won’t be able to justify getting back to my computer to capture the brilliance (ahem). So, here we are. I have some thoughts on a few things, for sure. I mean, of course I do. But I don’t know how eloquently they’ll flow. But I’m finding as I write this, just the act of typing seems sublime to me. Really, really comforting and reaffirming. If you ever want to know why some people that write don’t call themselves writers, and others that write do, it’s probably somewhere in there. If the keyboard feels like home — all the backing up and changing of language and stopping and grinning with satisfaction at a well-crafted thought — you can legitimately own the skill. If it’s a chore every time, then you may have made a vocational error somewhere down the line. [end Wednesday effort]

Saturday — Got negged by a 70 year old man yesterday. One of the strangest things that has ever happened to me. I’m finding that there is a subset of men who share a similarity of character that is one that, I’m guessing, many women find endearing (?) but I do not. Women must find it endearing or these guys wouldn’t do it, right? Isn’t that the whole point of negging? The veritable definition, even? But I do not enjoy it – I find that tactic not only in tremendously bad taste, but also dull and clunky and not very smooth, playa. Not even in the slightest. And I have the hardest time not simply calling them out verbally – seriously, I had to stop myself from verbally dressing down a 70 year old man — in the moment and embarrassing them just as egregiously as they are trying to do to me. But my momma raised me better I guess because I politely make a joke, count to 10 until my ears stop burning and being beet red (I hate that so so much), and then try to act like it doesn’t bother me at all. Because I have grace (ahem). But inside, my 5 year old little girl is crying and punching a wall. Here’s what went down…

I went to a small exhibit at the portrait gallery that was all about dance! Of course I did, and I went with a young female friend of mine who is a compatriot in the dance thing. She also happens to be working toward fundraising in the dance world (she’s in fact interning at the Washington Ballet this summer. Badass.) and so she’s testing out her hobnobbing chops with some of the mucky mucks who throw their money at the arts. So we were wandering around the Portrait Gallery and this older couple called out her name and I could tell based on the conversation that they were patrons, if you know what I mean. And so I politely stood and listened and tried to be as pleasant and quiet as possible when the man – who had been cutting his eyes at me and definitely had that little glimmer of mischief, finally said to me, “So, you’re her mother?”

Oh holy fuck.

Look, I’m not really sensitive about my age. Never have been. Don’t care about it, probably never will. Which, honestly, has, looking back, been a detriment because I’ve never felt the pressure to do any of the stuff that requires youth. Stupid, I know. It only bothers me a little when I think about being able to do certain things – specifically not being able to do things I used to be able to do — and missing out on doing other things because of the constraints of the physical self as one ages. But this man assumed, I’m sure, that I was sensitive because most women (maybe most people) are. Now, my friend is about 14 years younger than me so I guess it is technically possible that I could be her mother. But I’m aware that I look relatively young for my age (HUMBLEBRAG!), and I was standing there in a dress and blue Chuck Taylors for Christ sake, which generally gives one an idea about what generation someone belongs to. So this man didn’t for one second believe I was my friend’s mother. But he wanted to get my attention. And the way he wanted to do it was to try to embarrass me and make me uncomfortable. Sigh. As a Southern woman, I’m familiar with the tactic – although women are way more apt to do it in the South as the concept of “gentleman” still has some meaning down that way – but it’s just unimpressive as a behavior. Hell, it’s unimpressive when a frat bro does it in an attempt to get laid. And it’s downright pathetic when a 70 year old patron of the arts does it. So, guys, let me just end by saying this: stop. Because if this tactic works, you’re not dealing with the right kind of woman. I think Tucker Max was fond of this strategy and the women he … ah, got? were probably not that impressive either. Just a guess.

Anyway, there I was, fully aware that my friend is starting her career and these are the kind of people she’s going to need to hit up for money, so what could I do? Swallow it, make a joke, retain my composure, and feel sorry for his wife. All of which I did, with as much dignity and grace as I could muster. Because slapping a 70 year old man and going full redneck on him would have been excessive.

In any event, my friend will probably be okay with them, and that’s what counts. But I reckon I can only expect more of that as time goes on and especially if I stay here in the land of one-uppers. Why do they teach you that here, Washington area natives? Are you afraid if you aren’t putting people in their places you’ll be vulnerable somehow? Because honestly, vulnerability’s okay. It can actually be a very good thing at times.

As an aside, I’ve noticed the men trained to do this tend to choose women (for a time and possibly indefinitely) who can dish it as good, or often better, than they can. It’s kind of an ugly in fact. And it will forever make me think of George and Martha from “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” Or, ya know, this. Because I’m sure the pictures do show a happy couple. Isn’t that just the perfect macrocosm for the little social media superstars today…

Speaking of toxic marriages, not too long ago, someone suggested to me I was a little odd for not being married. Meh. Look, I want that. Always have. But I just don’t want to be trapped in a miserable life that I can’t extricate myself from given how seriously I take the vow of marriage. I’ve been in long term relationships that were only not marriages because I hedged. They taught me plenty. And thus far, I’ve not met anyone else who takes that vow as seriously as I do. If I never meet him, so be it. It makes me sad sometimes for sure. But all you fools who settle for misery and then divorce are the weird ones to me. And I get the argument about rolling the dice, but I don’t gamble unless there’s at least a reasonable chance I’ll win (see above statement about taking the vow seriously).

Anyway, I see the manipulation and efforts to control in a lot of relationships around me and it alternately makes me laugh and then cry, particularly if I like one of the players. But how do you ask someone why they let themselves be demeaned without offending them? You don’t, that’s how. Okay, other stuff.

So an old article about Hobby Lobby investing in the offending abortifacient manufacturers was emailed to me because of something I wrote on the Supreme Court’s decision. Here’s the thing about that 1) it’s already been addressed here; and 2) Hobby Lobby is actually going against their own evangelical religious beliefs to offer something to the employee via their investment choices. They’re not being hypocritical. THEY’RE BEING NICE. What’s with the hate? I really don’t get it. And I’m not trying to be a bitch about it, I’m really not. But have we gotten so far removed from acts that aren’t directly selfish that we no longer recognize them? Please tell me that’s not the case. Please.

God this was interesting. Turns the idea that higher compensation is the best motivator absolutely on its head and then kicks its butt out the door. Fascinating. Thanks for sharing Dave. But then, since you employ me, what are you trying to say man? (kidding…)

Yeah, pretty much. I don’t know about y’all but I get drained by the shallow and the surface and the Disneyland ride of “Concern for your fellow man!” thing. Seriously, it’s like the Disneyland approximation of the the real thing. With animatronics and everything.

God this was good. I like #11, with apologies to my friend Hallissey, who is both English and lovely.

And, to round it out, a Facebook friend posted this in honor of the holiday and it is an uncommonly eloquent turn of phrase(s), and also inspiring and true.

I do not choose to be a common man,

It is my right to be uncommon … if I can,

I seek opportunity … not security.

I do not wish to be a kept citizen.

Humbled and dulled by having the

State look after me.

I want to take the calculated risk;

To dream and to build.

To fail and to succeed.

I refuse to barter incentive for a dole;

I prefer the challenges of life

To the guaranteed existence;

The thrill of fulfillment

To the stale calm of Utopia.

I will not trade freedom for beneficence

Nor my dignity for a handout

I will never cower before any master

Nor bend to any threat.

It is my heritage to stand erect.

Proud and unafraid;

To think and act for myself,

To enjoy the benefit of my creations

And to face the world boldly and say:

This, with God’s help, I have done

All this is what it means

To be an Entrepreneur.

― Thomas Paine, Common Sense

“If Obama were a movie, he’d be Gigli.” Man, that’s harsh…But you know what? Treat people like shit long enough and eventually they’ll call you a flop without caring you are mortal and can be wounded. Respect is a two-way street.

Grrr. This was irritating. He’s laughing at the hubris of communists. Not drawing a parallel. But nice work Reuters. Way to move the window.

Oh dear, I’m in trouble. So delicious chilled.

Y’all, I seriously love this movie. Melissa McCarthy is a comedy genius.

Underdog and I have gotten into it. I'm not ashamed to admit when I've been unfair. The World Cup is entertaining. There. I said it.

Underdog and I have gotten into it. I’m not ashamed to admit when I’ve been unfair. The World Cup is entertaining. There. I said it.

Hi errybody. Cranking this out because Mr. TigerMutt needs to get out there and run around a bit. So, I’m going to limit my personal junk to one small, tiny thing: what is that thing when people pull a crummy move and then are surprised that you have little interest in spending a lot of time with them? I mean seriously, can someone explain that to me? The acknowledgement of crumminess happens, so it’s not like they’re unaware. There’s just this strange disbelief that their behavior might be tied to why their presence isn’t all that desired. Particularly when there’s never much of an apology, more of an explanation of why they are justified in being unjustifiably crummy. Meh. Look, I don’t hate you. I just don’t think I wanna hang. Crummy behavior and whatever you get out of doing it doesn’t really interest me all that much. I don’t have the energy to smile and act like it doesn’t irritate me. There are plenty of people I don’t have to work so hard to be around. But no hard feelings. I’ll see ya around I’m sure.

This piece is just fascinating to me. Be sure to read closely the admittance — ya know, just casually dropped — that there have been CIA programs designed to help Syrians defend themselves. This, my friends, is trial ballooning at its finest.

A new professional acquaintance of mine is covering some really good things. Completely enjoying his work. And, because of his piece, I learned about this, which, to my mind, is absolutely the future of programming.

Speaking of computing, this is huge. Really, it is. And it affects surveillance and location data and everything else. Things were getting a little out of hand. I mean, it’s one thing to make use of these technologies in the interest of public safety but we were traveling at mach 2 toward Big Brother. I’m glad the Supreme Court recognized the need for some restraint.

Finally on the tech topic, toys and more toys.

This seems like a good resource. Just throwing it out there.

So much awkward and hilarious.

That ex-boyfriend of mine really made me shy away from video games but holy cow y’all. Holy cow. I’d play this one I think.

Check out these chill kids. I’d be so proud of a daughter who embraces something off the beaten path like this.

Heh. The video is pretty depressing really. But then, sort of uplifting as well. Because really Facebook tends to mimic a lot of the silly high school popularity stuff — at least in some quarters. Not really in my feed too much because I tend not to want to deal with that nonsense. But I’ve seen it. It freaks me out a little because I really don’t understand what those people are after. It just seems like some alternate reality that is not very real. And it’s a little dark because I’m pretty sure it’s all about envy. And y’all know how I feel about attempts to make people commit one of the deadlies.

Just a little howl and a nod to home. I’ll be down that way in a few weeks. Really can’t wait.

This is what I'm doing right now.

This is what I’m doing right now.

And

This is what I did last night. Freddie Free. At times I walk around feeling satisfied.

This is what I did last night. Freddie Free. At times I walk around feeling satisfied.

Hey y’all. So I had a post written yesterday and when I pushed the button to publish, WordPress pulled a derp and said something like, “Are you sure you want to do that?” and I said, “Uh, yeah.” and it said, “Well you can’t.” It was a weird dialog box exchange that still doesn’t make sense to me except that I hadn’t closed that tab in my browser for literally a few days so I think WP just got confused. Anyway, take 2…

Let me just start by saying to the people who feel the need to pat themselves on the back for everything — and I mean EVERYTHING — they do. Look, stop okay? Going to the grocery store is not a feat of skill. Being kind and thoughtful to your friends, learning how to share, being decent, not pitching a fit for not getting your way is what you’re SUPPOSED to do. As my friend Jeff was always fond of saying, you don’t get a cookie or a gold star for doing the right thing. It’s what’s required of good people. It, in short, doesn’t make you special. I used to be of the opinion that those people were kind of sad because they just had to be massively insecure to need affirmation for things like that. I’ve changed my mind. Now I think there are some who simply believe themselves to be better than other people and something as simple as thinking of someone else means they’ve done something remarkable and they deserve praise for it. Bleh. Get over yourselves. You may have been born with different opportunities or skills or genetic material, but that has — as we say in the South — shit all to do with something you’ve done. So maybe stop giving yourself so much credit for something you had nothing to do with. It’s obnoxious. But then, you are inordinately amusing and entertaining….hmmmm. Never mind. Carry on being you. Sometimes I get bored and need a good laugh.

Alright, let’s talk about the serious stuff. I’ll try to remember what I wrote yesterday…

With no disrespect to Megyn Kelly, who is a total badass, I tend to not be jumping aboard this train. Everyone’s comparing Rand Paul’s invocation of Reagan as a reason to blast Cheney/Bush for their decision to go into Iraq. I just think that, given 9/11 and their belief that Iraq had some pretty nasty stockpiles of weapons, they made the best decision they could at the time. And wanting to bring Democracy to a region — wanting to offer the concept of freedom and self-governance to a repressed and tortured people — was noble and came from a place of good. Unfortunately, Western concepts are culturally so foreign it would seem that it may have been a losing proposition from jump. But the effort wasn’t evil and I’m so proud of the men and women who were there, who fought on behalf of that noble goal, and I refuse to diminish their sacrifice by questioning the nobility of the goal. For the record, and speaking as someone who really does want to stay out of world skirmishes where we have no immediate interest, I believe we should have gone in. I believe the WMDs existed and were moved, and am fascinated by pieces like this — of course making no claims about its veracity because how the hell do I know? — but there is and has always been more to this story. Finally, I do not think what is happening there now is because we made the decision to go in. What’s happening now is directly the fault of the current administration and its leading from damn behind philosophy. Because this is true, and this is the future. And Obama needs to man up and cop to his role. That sounds disrespectful and I’m sorry. But it’s how I feel. But I can get into that some other time.

Just to keep things real, Fox news is running a piece on fighting Anthrax right now. Welcome to the new age.

I’m just gonna leave this here. Krebs quote about not posting private information is apparently one that needs reiterating.

Everyone’s seen this floating — heh, see what I did there? — around right? Holy. Cow. If it’s real, it reminds me of that time I was a kid swimming out to the sandbar off the coast of Ft. Walton beach (you can kind of see it here) and I opened my eyes and realized I was smack in the middle of a flight of butterfly rays. But they’re harmless. I’m not sure I would have known what to do if I saw a shark. Punch them in the nose, right?

My friend Matt recently moved back home to England and he sent me this video the other day and said, “Sarah, it has been a while but this is really something. While referring to British history mostly, a reminder of how remarkable Mrs Thatcher really was. A revolutionary (albeit not quite ideologically pure for libertarians) who achieved a lot in favour of economic freedom. If only we could find another PM like her here. A great pep up if you ever feel down about the power of freedom for ordinary people as an idea.” Sometimes I forget how fortunate I am to know such great people. Thank you my friend.

Pretty is as pretty does. I don’t know if Hope Solo is nuts or not, but the hyper aggressive/competitive woman is just freaky to me. For example, after my softball game the other night, a new girl on the other team we beat like redheaded stepchildren — very attractive and a good player — decided (I think. I never really am able to get into their crazy heads. Thank God.) that she had an interest in one of my male friends and I think felt like I needed to be dealt with if she was going to get close. Seriously. She literally cornered me and put her hands up on either side of the wall to block me from saying goodbye to my friend. It was manically physical and off the chain crazy. I almost punched her in the stomach. But I don’t need to get nailed for assault so I just spit a few annoyed words at her and made her look a fool, which tends to be how I roll. But ladies, scale it back. Maybe “ladies” isn’t the right word there… Because look, if you’re going to be crazy, at least do something useful with yourself.

Just a funny after that crazy talk:

This is just true.

This is just true.

Someone asked me yesterday what my male physical ideal looked like. That’s easy.

I didn't even have to think about it.

I didn’t even have to think about it.

“They need a base of operations to train and recruit and plan. And there’s really only one reason they need such a thing. These are among the most dedicated people in the world to their cause, and what do you imagine is the cause they’re dedicated to? We, unfortunately, do not have the same dedication.” ~ Pops on Iraq

Hey howdy to all several of you. I’m taking a minute from spreadsheeting to check in because the Advil is starting to work and I can actually type for extended periods of time without wanting to throw up. Battling the never-ending migraine and it’s really starting to annoy me. I can get it to a place where I can function but with the humidity making me sweat out every bit of water in my system, the last several days of extreme pollen in the air, and the recent barometric fluctuations, I feel like I’m perpetually hung over. And there’s nothing more dissatisfying than feeling hung over without the joy of drinking. I’m hoping to make a book release thing later on the Hill but I’ll just have to see what my sinuses say. Anyway, Iraq…

I’m trying to decide if I want to write about this in a more “official” capacity. I’m not sure I do because, for the life of me, I don’t know what the answer is. I keep thinking of the guys that fought and died there trying to stabilize the region, and it makes me rather angry. Because even if you disagreed with W — and I’m no fan of being the world police — there is absolutely nothing beneficial about what’s happening right now. It certainly doesn’t benefit the US or its allies. And the greater concept of peace is absolutely threatened unless you believe these guys marching toward Baghdad have noble intentions. I think the evidence suggests that’s not the case. Understatement of the year, I know. And I think the larger lesson is, of course, that we can declare that the war is over, but that doesn’t mean the enemy agrees. Which is why I think my libertarian friends should be paying very close attention to what’s happening right now. No one likes war, and you can declare yourself a pacifist, but if someone shows up at your door with a bat, or tries to destroy your business, or threatens your family, you by God better know how to fight. A destabilized Middle East is actually very bad for us. It simply is. Perhaps there’s a way to facilitate its stabilization that doesn’t require war but so far we haven’t found it. And now, well, it just looks like a waiting game. We need to be looking to Afghanistan as well instead of just handing over the bad guys like the hostilities have ended and being like, “Y’all be good now, ya’hear?” per Hillary Clinton. Then, of course, there’s Syria, which puts me in the mind of the rat line conversation I had a while back about how we were arming AQ there and they are, without question, some of the people upsetting the apple cart in Iraq. But I still think O thought — because, ironically, we are now actually as arrogant as all the lefties thought we were under W — we were helping free Syrians. AQ was dead. Of course they were. We had decided it and said it aloud. And that’s all it takes, right? And I guess it’s just as easy to call a do-over when that’s the thrust of your muscle.

Anyway, I’m glad some of the new kids are starting to offer ideas. Because don’t think this isn’t potentially a part of that dedication to cause I mentioned earlier. This, too. That’s not paranoia. That’s the reality and I’m pretty sure people who have been existing under this idea that we’re safe within our borders may have their minds changed. Sorry to worry you. But let’s just not be stupid going forward, okay? Does this mean we get all crazy and start rounding people up Japanese internment style? Of course not. But this, from 2006, still goes on and acting like it doesn’t is foolish.

Okay, back to spreadsheeting. Here’s some other things.

Interesting. No one really talks about this marginalized group, do they?

Fascinating. I like the idea that the great masters were the tech geniuses of their time. Because of course they were.

Oh man I could get into this…

I had a song written about me once when I was younger and a lot cuter. It wasn’t as awesome as this one but I’ll tell you about it sometime…

Hi y’all. Just quickly getting a little out before getting back home to finish the day’s work and take the mutt out. Turns out he’s a good little egg, if a little nervous every time I leave that I’m never coming back. We’re working on it. And he’s very smart — I think that comes from whatever terrier lives inside his genetic code — so he’s getting better by the day. Anyway, here he is making friends down in St. Clement’s Maryland this weekend at a Hits for Heroes softball tournament I played in:

stylin

He’s weird looking, I know. But the boys seemed to think he looked pretty cool, so I’ll take it. Anyway, I have not been able to stop thinking about the Bergdahl trade because it seemed at first blush like just a ludicrous move, then it seemed like a terrible PR campaign, then it seemed again like a really terrible trade. And I’ve settled on the fact that it was, in fact, a terrible trade. But let me explain…

The quote in the header is from a talking head I saw on the news Sunday (apologies, can’t remember his name), and it’s 100% how I feel about the trade. It doesn’t add up. We gave 5 pretty nasty dudes back over for 1 alleged traitor and, given our President’s own words about how these Taliban leaders could return to their old ways, it doesn’t look like a prisoner trade at the end of a war. And he really wasn’t a hostage of his platoon mates can be believed. I feel like something of a jerk because I suggested that I would have been okay leaving him there. I’ve since softened that stance because that really is pretty inhumane and I just don’t want to be that hard. (I keep telling you all I’m really just a little girl in my heart.) But to trade 5 bad guys for 1…well, honestly, weak guy, is a pretty bad trade. I mean those are some pretty crummy negotiating skills.

At first I thought there must be something about Bergdahl that made him worth it. The more I read, the more I think he was just a jackass with zero loyalty and kind of a soft head. Who in their right mind goes looking for the Taliban to help him? I mean come on dude…

So sure, bring him home, but did we need to give up the men we did to do it? Is it possible that our President was so eager to close Gitmo to get the feather in his cap that he would make us look, once again, like complete morons who have no respect for our fighting men and women? It would appear so. And the Haqqani leaders — not the Taliban, which is another interesting wrinkle — must have counted on that narcissism when they offered Bergdahl up. Peachy. Just effing peachy. And I’ve seen some of the articles noting that we can track those bad guys, and that we won the war of ideas, and that it’s a morale booster to the men/women in the field because they knows we’ll bring them home. And to that I say what my father is fond of saying when he encounters stupidity: horseshit. Anyway, these guys are pretty thoughtful about bringing their traitor home, but they think the trade was bad as well. Because my understanding is that in any trade one is supposed to maximize the gain while minimizing the cost. I suppose, as my father noted, it depends on your goal if the gain was maximized. And that speaks to the fact that our leaders and the country may — as they have been on many other things over the last 6 years — be working at cross purposes. That struggle gets tiresome after a while, no?

Anyway, I do feel bad for being so harsh about Bergdahl initially. But that scene from Lonesome Dove sprang to my mind — one of the best things put on film dammit — and Michelle Malkin [Correction: Malkin didn't write it, rather a poster at her site did. And it's not about the current administration per se, but it is about Obama. Mea culpa.] wrote about it here in relation to some other weirdness this administration has done over the past several years. Relevant part below:

But another story, one that leads to many of the story’s tragic events, is the tale of Jake Spoon himself. Robert Urich played Jake in the miniseries, and I always thought he was miscast; he was cold and citified. It should have been Tom Selleck, someone charismatic and charming you really wanted to like, only to discover gradually through his carelessness and neglect what an empty soul Jake Spoon really had.

(Hang on, I’m going somewhere political with this, I promise.)

Spoon adapts easily to whoever his companions may be, and he falls in at one point with some sadistic horse thieves led by Dan Suggs, who enjoy shooting settlers and burning their bodies. Jake doesn’t shoot anyone but is complicit in the bodies’ desecration. Perhaps he does so out of fear that Suggs and his men will kill him if he doesn’t–but Jake isn’t in any hurry to escape them, or fight them. It’s easier for him just to continue riding with them.

Uva Uvam Vivendo Varia Fit.

Until one day, he’s called to account. Suggs, his brothers, and Jake Spoon are all captured by Gus and Call and Newt, who promptly decide to hang them all for burning the farmers and murdering three horse traders as well. Jake tries to fast-talk his way out of the necktie party, explaining that he doesn’t share in Suggs’ guilt:

JAKE SPOON: Oh, you don’t need to tie me up, Newt. Hell, I didn’t kill anybody. I just fell in with these boys to get through the Territory. Hell, I was gonna leave ‘em first chance I got!
GUS McCRAE: I wish you’d taken that chance a little earlier, Jake. A man who’ll go along with five killings is takin’ his leave a little slow.

There are more protests from the gang and from Jake, and then his old friend Gus explains:

GUS McCRAE: You know how it works, Jake. You ride with an outlaw, you die with an outlaw. I’m sorry you crossed the line.
JAKE SPOON: I didn’t see no line, Gus. I was just tryin’ to get through the Territory without getting scalped.

It doesn’t save poor Jake. They all knew he should have had the judgment to extricate himself from his bad companions long before his reckoning arrived.

If the GOP takes the Senate, I’ll be comfortable having her in the executive office. On principle, I don’t like the idea of one ideology in every branch. But holy moses, stuff like this will never stop being disturbing. Throwing your underlings under the bus is not only bad leadership but it’s the behavior of a personality that is not quite…I’ll say it…mature.

As a dancer, I’ll weigh in: bad form. On a stage, fine. At the actual site, there should be some reverence.

Um, there may be a very good reason Google has opted out of the encryption game. And I don’t think it has much to do with whether they have the capability to do it.

Pretty much all of this. Number 9 especially because Jesus H., it’s a press release, not a work of literature…

It is just different down there. I’ve addressed number 17 before I think. And I love that it’s true.

Laughed pretty hard here.

This is my buddy Chad’s place and the excitement is overwhelming. He’s a good guy and their coffee joint is going to be great. Check them out immediately.

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