A Menagerie of Outspoken Opinions on Science, World Politics, and Geek Culture

Monday, August 09, 2004

Monday Linkfest

Happy Monday! I had a great weekend, as I got to do my two favorite things: Game a lot and go out for drinks with my bestest fwend, Beth. Beth and I even talked about politics for a little while (the other people we were with fled to the pool tables and dance floor as soon as that started) and we both decided that the other is crazy and desperately needs to change their mind.

Well, I guess it'd be sorta creepy if we thought too much alike.

Anyhoo, there are a couple sites I'm linking for the first time today: Via Cold Fury I discovered RedState.org, and yesterday Cornpone linked to My War - Fear and Loathing in Iraq. RedState is a Republican web community constructed in answer to the large Internet presence of far-left liberals (remember how Dean raised all that money?). I'm no Republican, but this site looks to be well written and I should be able to get some good debates going with the social conservatives. My War - Fear and Loathing in Iraq is a milblog by a soldier serving near Mosul, Iraq. His post about the fighting there last week is just incredible ... I suggest everyone read it and return to visit him often.

Meanwhile, Michelle expresses yet another opinion that I agree with: Intelligence gathering is the quintessential double-edged sword, and even more so when race is involved. Do the job well and someone is going to come after you for civil rights violations, freedom of information demands, or (as in Michelle's post) racial profiling. Do the job poorly and they'll hang your ass out to dry for getting Americans killed. Last week I posted this in a thread over at BookTalk in which we're discussing Lee Harris' Civilization and It's Enemies:

"... while I do not hold specific grudges against Islam either, one would be a fool to ignore that it is specifically Islamic terrorism we're facing. There are not Zoroastrians or Hindus blowing up buses in Israel, embassies in Africa, and skyscrapers in America. It was not a Shinto group who bombed the trains in Madrid, nor was it Catholics who ran a raft of explosives into the USS Cole. Muslims perpetrated all of those acts - fanatical Muslims, yes, but Muslims just the same - and that fact must be a consideration in our efforts to defeat our enemy."

I stand by my assessment. If we were fighting the IRA, I'd advocate closer scrutiny of Irish men between 15 and 50. If we were fighting the Hillary Duff Fan Club I'd advocate the same for teenage girls between 10 and 16. The simple truth is that in the war on terror ethnicity is a factor. Perhaps if the Arab and Muslim communities here in America took a more active stand against radicalism the war would be over faster, and all of us could get back to flirting with flight attendants instead of wondering if the Lebanese guy in 12a has an explosive shoe.

Lastly, sarahk has moved Mountaineer Musings, so those of you who are fans should update your links. Apparently, Sarah is fairly proud of her shins; I know when I first saw a picture of her that's what I was thinking ... "Nice gun, and what a pair of shins!"

*Sigh*. So, another long week is ahead ... but at least we're coming up on the halfway point of evil, evil Monday. And DragonCon is less than a month away now, so I do have something to look forward to.

Later, chil'uns.