Thursday, May 29, 2008



We've been bizzy bizzy with family stuff, including and mostly, the culmination of
#3 son's term at Naval Officer Candidate School in Newport. Proud moments all round, enhanced by attendance of #1 son, freshly returned from Iraq. These two book-ended #2 son, who is set to change the world in the battle for energy independence!

Triple threat, folks!

The new ensign would never sully the relationship by gushing so, but I'm sure he joins us in bottomless gratitude to the man breathlessly known to his maggots as "Drill-Instructor-Gunnery-Sergeant-Jones- United-States-Marine-Corps"-- thanks, Gunny, for turning him into a mensch.

We don't know who shot it -- and Gunny Jones would like to shoot whoever shot it -- but some freakshow went "outside the family" and posted their drill competition on YouTube. It was HOT.


Nobody noticed much -- well, at least not the same folks who are reading What Happened* with drool running down their chins-- when former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Douglas Feith, published War and Decision, the definitive (so far) and authoritative account of the Bush administration's path to war in Iraq. That's because the book is so detailed, exhaustively documented and footnoted that it was obviously too serious to be ground up and spat out in 15 seconds by Chris Matthews. So, like, who cares, eh?

*On the up-tipped (for lack of weight) end of the see-sawing book shelf comes the slash-and-burn memoirs of former Bush White House Press Secretary "Beam me up Scotty" McClellan, called, amusingly What Happened-- what indeed?

Seems the short and doughy one took his thumb out of his mouth long enough to apply his fingers to the keyboard, in an attempt to put the hurt on the guy who, he thinks, did him dirt.

Of course, he's a little confused about how it was that
Bush did him dirt-- it wasn't by feeding him tainted wafflings, nor by relieving him of his position. The real injury inflicted on McClellan by Bush was giving him the Press Secretary job in the first place, a position for which he was manifestly unsuited from Day 1, and had improved not one whit by Day 750 or whenever it was that he was blissfully put out of our misery.

I stand by my first assessment of Scott McClellan:
The Anchoress called him a “milquetoast.” She is entirely too kind. One hears many different things about Ari Fleischer, not all of them flattering, but as the guy facing the wolverines in the Washington press corps every day, he was a master. It was distressing to learn that he was leaving, and when McClellan stepped in I was convinced this had to be a temporary measure until a grown-up could be hired. From day one McClellan has struck me as the worst possible choice for his job, with the look of a sweaty, dough-faced prep-school prefect living in perpetual fear of being wedgied in the boys’ john and stuffed in a locker.
(the rest here) -- and I must say that he has fulfilled my highest expectations. (His book is published by folks associated with George Soros-- I'm just sayin'.) Even if one accepts the claim, now being blasted about, that McClellan's book is a pack of lies and lie-lets, Bush is still not off the hook insofar as this is yet another example of the price everybody has paid for the Texan's taste for cronyism over qualifications.

Cries of "lying Judas" seem a bit over the top in response to McClellan's oeuvre. I think "little puke" probably covers it.




Read this.

Ask politicians and pundits if they have.

Pay them no heed if they haven't.

Friday, May 16, 2008



Going viral on the 'net: the closing liturgy of the 2008 West Coast Call to Action conference, or, as it might otherwise be known, afternoon calisthenics at the seniors' home.

LOTTA gray hair in this group.

The processional hymn is SS-LO-O-O-O-W-W-W enough for our local St. Vincent de Paul, but I think we'd draw the line at the dancing. And the puppets.

[Did you hear the one about the middle-aged Martha-Graham-wannabe who got brained with a thurible?......]

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

HMH-361 checks in to
Marine Corps Air Station Miramar

-- reporting safe return, Sir-Yes-Sir.

Papa Bear is home.


Now if he'd just report in to MOM!!!!
(waiting, waiting, waiting......)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008


The conference isn't mine -- I'm just a spousal hood ornament. We're ensconced in the old-world elegance of the [Fairmont] Chateau Laurier -- spacious grand lobby salons, tastefully dim hallways, room with 14-foot ceiling. All mod cons, conceived and acquired under the supervision of one Charles Melville Hays, then General Manager of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway of Canada, who unfortunately never spent a night in his beautiful hotel, due to his having chosen to report to Ottawa via an ocean voyage on the RMS Titanic in April 1912. Sigh.

Pleasant walk around the impressive Parliament Hill district. Not so pleasant walk around the slightly grubby tourist market area. Highlight of Day One: riding the elevator briefly with Salman Rushdie.

Day Two included some official activities, followed by my getting swept up into the flow of the annual March for Life, Canada's entry into the frustrating uphill battle against abortion. Not nearly so well-attended as its sister march in Washington, D.C. -- but this they have in common: no matter how many thousands, you won't see it reported on local or national news. It looked like this:

Also in the neighbourhood: Canada's official war memorial, the sculpture representing a scene from World War I, but built in remembrance of four major wars in which Canada has participated.

Magnificent, folks.


Moment of Truth in Iraq by Michael Yon. Digests and expansions upon the dispatches of the past couple of years, spent embedded up to his eyeballs with troops in combat all over Iraq. Yon is one of a handful of self-embedded reporters, telling the facts and placing them in context (others: Michael Totten, Bill Roggio, J.D. Johannes [buy his documentary Outside the Wire]).

Cranky, melodramatic maybe -- Yon remains the Master.