Rants and Raves

Opinion, commentary, reviews of books, movies, cultural trends, and raising kids in this day and age.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


* Yesterday I picked up my family at the airport after a month visiting family in Poland. The boy didn't seem changed, but the baby looked huge compared to what I remember last month. ("What are you feeding her? Smaller weaker babies?" was how one person put it.)

Baby Judyta went from the western border near Wroclaw, to Lublin near the eastern to meet her three surviving great-grandparents and assorted aunts and cousins.

* A few days before, a friend and I took a trip up to the Black Mesa area in the Oklahoma panhandle. Look at a map, it's in the upper left hand corner. It's actually part of the eco-zone of the New Mexico desert, however it had just gotten drenched by the rain that is right now flooding parts of north Texas.

I had never seen the desert after such a heavy rain. The blooming prickly pear and cholla cactus are very beautiful.

* Whoopee, Nifong disbarred! Next comes the lawsuits and criminal charges.

Sorry, I've got no sympathy at all for sociopaths in office who use their power to advance their careers at the expense of innocents.

I only hope that the 88 Duke professors who signed that infamous manifesto get sued as well - and that the university takes a major financial hit for their disgraceful conduct.

* My wife wanted to know if the American media covered President Bush's visit to Poland and the brinksmanship with Putin. I had to tell her that it did mention it, but that Paris Hilton got far more air time...

* Speaking of Bush and Putin, the whole thing only confirms my belief that the biggest problem with dealing with the Russians, is convincing them that we really, truly wish them well. We honest-to-God want them to be free, rich and happy.

That's actually quite a problem with the Russian paranoid mindset. Bush was pretty right on when he tried to explain to Putin that it's not a zero-sum game we have to play.

The nice thing about Freedom is, that there is always enough to go around.

* I had this insight while talking with a Russian acquaintance some time ago. I said, "You know, we never hated you, even during the worst of the Cold War. We don't even have a nasty name for you. Nothing with real venom, like "Jap", "gook", or "Hun". But these people here in Eastern Europe - they hate you, make no mistake about that. They're often perfectly willing to be decent to you on an individual basis, but as a nation they hate your guts. We are literally your only friends."


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