The Shredi Master

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Location: Iowa, Afghanistan

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Monday, June 26, 2006

Blogger Blues

Blogger has very crappy support. Try to find an email address for support.

Anyway, I can;t post pictures and 99% of the time I can;t log in or do anything because I get a message saying my cookies are disabled. They aren't. Apparantly a LOT of users are having the same two problems, so hopefully the twinkies at Google can fix the problem someday soon. Until then, blogging will have to wait.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

He so ronerey.

You hear a lot about the craziness that is North Korea. Kim Jong Il is definitely a crazy guy. Anyway, they don't let Americans into NK, but they do let Russians and Europeans in sometimes. I just finished reading this awesome blog post with many great pictures taken by a Russian inside NK. A lot of the pictures are of things they tell you not to take pictures of. The funny thing about NK is that since the government rules everyones lives, all the people think they live in this modern advanced utopian society. What a ruse. Take 10 minutes and check out the pics on the first couple pages of this thread and read the short captions. I guarantee you enjoy it and you'll learn something too. Did you knwo they whizz out in public. They farm using animals as power.

Go Here

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Tuesday Twelve

I'm going to roll with Ang's Thursday Thirteen travel thing. Only it's not Thursday. So, twelve places I've been: ( I'm going to try to list things other than what Ang already did, so she can "learn soemthing about me." )

1. Boston/ Cape Cod. I've gone to Boston to see the master of all things Model Railroading, George Sellios, maybe 4 times now. I love the area becasue of its rich history and the coast and small towns are beautiful.

Downtown Boston:

2. Victoria, B.C. Victoria is amazing. I went in college and we stayed at the Empress hotel - also amazing. One of the other students and I went up to Whistler to do some sweet skiing. The view from that high was breathtaking and I liked the skiing better than Colorado.

3. New Orleans, LA. My family used to take cross country train vacations when I was young. We'd go to 5 or 6 big cities and stay for a few days each. I think we stopped here three times. I tried alligator, rode the trolleys and took a little chucnk of concrete out of this dam thing. Just kidding.

4. Tuscon, AZ. Tuson was hot. Walking on the sun hot. But it's a dry heat right?! Yeah whatever. The best part of Tuscon was always Old Town, which is where they shot several movies including the calssic, "Three Amigos." They do cowboy shows and have some rides and it's just a generally cool, old west gunslinger themed town.

5. Australia. Went to Cairns, Canberra, and Syndey. Sydney was a very unique city. This was a college business trip and we had some great meetings. The best place by far was Cairns, where we went snorkeling on the great barrier reef and then I took a free day and took a scenic train up into the rainforest. It was a whole nother world.

6. Auckland, New Zealand. Also a nice place. They have a bunch of inactive volcanoes that you can walk up on and look around at the city. Very nice place and they have great accents.

7. San Juan Capistrano, CA. Very nice climate. We visited a mission there. I was in school in California so, being that long ago, it must have been a pretty cool trip for me to have remmebered it.

8. Mystic, Connecticut. Family trip again. This is the town from a crappy chick movie called Mystic Pizza. Bad movie aside, it is a very nice town and is typical East Coast. We had excellent seafood at a place right on the water.

9. Long Barn, CA. We used to have a cabin in the Sierra's in this small town. This place makes Shell Rock look like Manhattan. It was great. We were 10 minutes from Pinecrest lake and 20 mintues from Dodge Ridge - my favortie ski place ever. AND, we were half an hour or so from Jamestown - which is where the Jamestown Railroad museum is. (They've filmed a million shows and movies here including little house, an empisode of the A-Team adn Back to the future three.)

10. Chicago IL. Yeah, Ang listed this one too, but I've beent there so many times I have to list it. Chicago is a great city. great architecture and museums etc. I've been there with Mandyto take the trian and with Chris to go see a Dream Theater concert and go museum hopping. Chicago is just one of those cities youhave to see. (And if you do, stay in Naperville or some suburb and take the trian in. it's fun and you'll save a ton.)

11. Everywhere, Wiconsin. I love the landscape in Cheddarslovakia. My favorite place is the Hous eon the Rock in Spring Green. Great cheese can be found in Dodgeville. The Dells of course are a great time. I've been to Elroy multiple times with my friend Jeremy as we like to bike the Elroy Sparta bile trail. It's an old railroad line that has been converted. 36 miles long (72 round trip). There are great views and amazing rock cuts, tons of railroad history and.... three tunnels, the longest of which is almost a mile long. Even on the hottest day of summer, fog rolls out of tunnels as they stay 50-60 degrees all the time.

12. Your house, right now. Look behind you!! Okay never mind.

12. Vancouver, BC. Where they film all the movies now. Hollywood is all union until they have to make a movie - then it's off to Vancouver or Sydney. Vancouver was nice. great seafood and very reasonable costs. Beautiful landscape and lots of water!

That's it for now. I'll try to add pictures later.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Signs of the Times

A few news items over the last week that weren't very widely reported really caught my eye and begged for a little commentary. You may have heard some of this, but more than likely you haven't.

:: Kids are dumb. Teens are dumber. With the changes in popular culture and the lack of qualified teachers, the self absorption of parents, and the breakdown of the traditional nuclear family come big unintended consequences for our youth. The case of Katherine Lester is a story indicative of a bigger problem. The 16 year old met a guy on Myspace, whose user name- Abdullah Psycho - should have told her something, left her farm town of under 1000 people and boarded a series of flights for Israel's West Bank. The whole ridiculous story can be read here. Anyway, she is a good student and according to the article is a fairly well adjusted typical teen that fell in love with someone on Myspace who was supposedly 25 and who told her how to come meet him in Israel. So you read this story and you think "What would make an otherwise bright kid do something so unbelievably stupid?"

I think the answer in part is found in the last bit of the article. She's from a broken home and the mother, whom she was with at the time, obviously isn't the brightest bulb in the bunch. The mother fell for the lame story about a trip to Canada and helped her get a passport for heaven's sake. Anyway, what can any psychologist tell you about children of divorced parents and people who have MIA fathers? They lack love and attention and often reach out (in stupid and unintelligent ways) to get it.

This incident was only one of three in the last month when teenage girls from Michigan have left home looking to meet older guys from Myspace. In May a 25 year old guy was caught while en route to meet a 13 year old girl he met on Myspace. Earlier this month a 17 year old drove down to pick up a 12 year old girl. The sheriff says complaints about these internet related deals are now a daily occurrence. In just the past few months the National Center for Missing and Exploited children have seen child enticement calls soar from 50 per week to 199 per week. Bottom line - if you are a parent, skip the next episode of Lost and instead find out what your kids are doing online. The web is a great place to meet people but it has also created an excellent tool for sexual predators of all persuasions. Unfortunately for kids, they have to grow up much more quickly now.

:: Should your kids watch PG movies and not just G's? They will have to now.

"As the MPAA explained to Kris Fuhr, Provident Films vice president for marketing: "The movie was heavily laden with messages from one religion, and this might offend people from other religions. We alert parents to something that isn't in their religion. Parents are very sensitive about having their kids exposed to religious material." "

The above was a quote referencence to the movie Facing the Giants. Anyway, to keep this short, the MPAA has decided that if a movie has a faith "theme" it will need to be bumped up to a PG instead of a G. You've got to keep your kids away from sex, violence, swearing and religion!?

:: If you need a reason to celebrate something, the UAW will be taking some major hits in the days to come. It's no secret that I dislike the major US auto makers. They force US suppliers to make razor thin margins or to go overseas. Thus most car parts in US made autos are from overseas anyway. Meanwhile Toyota and Hyaudai and Honda have all built plants over here. Oh the irony of the "Buy American" mantra. I've always resented Ford, GM and Chrysler for decreasing their part costs so much and then increasing sticker prices. More than the makers themselves however, the UAW is the reason for increased costs and decreased quality. The great thing about unions though, is that given enough time, they will destroy the companies they leech off of. Such was the case in the airline industry when the pilots union led their airline into bankruptcy. Now it's the UAW's turn. The latest news is that UAW leadership will have to give in on some of their insane health care benefits to the big three during the next round of contract negotiations. Welcome to the real world UAW!

:: FEMA, along with being inept at disaster relief, seems to have mis-spent a Billion of our taxpayer dollars. We paid to send people to Hawaii, paid for divorce lawyers, double paid for people to stay in hotels, paid for a sex change, for season football tickets etc etc. If you are reading this and you are a Democrat, go read THIS article about how the relief money was spent. Now think again before you opt for government to take over any new roles. Universal healthcare - yeah right. If you are a Republican, lean back and laugh at the idiocy of liberals who want the government to do more for us.

:: LAST item: Irresponsible media. This month has been a doozy for the mainstream media. In the race to be the first to report stories, many MSM outlets have decided to forego fact checking or vetting of any sort. Liberal bias has been in plain view as well this week. The biggest example of reporting anything - sans any substance- is the Duke rape case. The MSM was quick to crucify the WEALTHYHLY WHITE MALE students in favor of a poor black stripper. The case has fallen apart like a John Kerry presidential run. Things got worse for the prosecution this week after more story changes and the news that the hospital might not have detected after all. Gee. The case is about race and the political aspirations of a DA up for re-election.

The other big media deal that irked me was that all of the MSM jumped on the Haditha story about Marines killing innocent kids. Along with calling for the closure of Guantanamo Bay, they hopped on the prisoner suicides there and one paper actually called them "heroes." If they weren't so busy reporting on the crappy conditions for the terrorists at GITMO, they might have mentioned the 8 US soldiers held in shackles in solitary confinement at Camp Pendleton since April. 8 soldiers who have yet to be charged with any crime. You can read about it HERE.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The greatest generation

62 years ago 3 million allied troops stormed the French beaches in the largest invasion in the history of the world. 53,700 dead, 18,000 missing, 155,000 wounded. Back then, America would make the greatest sacrifice imaginable to combat evil. Today we can't stay the course overseas because, as the mainstream Media has pointed out repeatedly, 2000 US lives have been lost. Even worse - we can't even call "evil" what it is because it's not PC. Much like the Romans, America is heading for a big fall because our sole focus is on "us." When we are no longer able to summon up the courage to sacrifice for a good greater than ourselves, we are lost.

Hop over to this Bog and read an excellent D-Day post about the courage we had as a nation.

Check this Blog out to read the citations for the 4 Medals of Honor given on D-Day- all posthumously. Courage.