Stop it, you idiots!

There - now I feel better. :-(

Oh boy - well a lot's going on and I've neglected to update the home page as I have been building other pages and sites. The most interesting stuff is happening in the "Quo vadis?" site where I have apparently fallen in with a bunch of radicals. Honestly - these people over 50! I mean, I've been on my best behavior lately trying to see everything from a neutral perspective but take a look at the survey results from the people in this group.

"Quo vadis" is our short name for the "Second Half" (that's a euphemism for over 50) study group Don and I are facilitating at UMass Dartmouth. The focus, as I have mentioned, is foreign affairs and we have eight selected issues to explore this fall - issues selected as part of the "Great Decisions" program of the Foreign Policy Association. You're welcome to participate in the site in any way that appeals to you (please do), though it's aimed to supplement the weekly meetings of this group.

The site is divided into two major sections. The first one - with a red color scheme - is class work. In here I can especially recommend the material Don dug up on propaganda. You'll find it in the "handouts" for "Topic 0." (The link to these is on the home page.) He got this stuff off a site that does an excellent job of giving guidelines for dissecting propaganda.

And there's a similar set of guidelines for dissecting images, the exercise for next week. You'll find them - and some images - in the Topic 1 section - again, linked from the home page. Feel free to chip in with your comments on any of these postings.

Finally, the "New and Views" section of the site - now only reachable from the link on the top right of the home page - is a sort of playground where Don and I are accumulating news resources that relate to these topics. It's far from comprehensive, but there's interesting stuff there with new items added irregularly. That section of the site is keyed in blue. If you scan down the right hand column of the News and Views home page you'll see links to Google News searches on selected topics. Did you know you could do this? You can go to Google News, do a search, and bookmark the results. What's even more cool - they have a beta test thing going where you can get regular email updates based on your search. Great way to track a news topic.

So what else is happening? Here's a quick run down of recent updates you may find interesting.

You'll find a fascinating account from Dom of Australians and flies in Natural High. Also briefly updates disappointing hawk season.

The Hurricane Carol site continues to attract about 100 visitors a week and new stories continue to dribble in - go here to see the latest additions.

And who is Wesley Clark? help me out here. Doonesbury has been giving him a boost lately - while ignoring kerry - but some of the stsuff I've read really makes me wonder about Clark. See this item in Peace Passion for more.

And check out US and the World for some challenging thinking on Iraq.

Oh - and the very last comment on this entry in Family - the comment by Harrison Stone Jr. - reveals a fascinating instance of how the Web is bringing us in contact with close family members we have never known.

Am I having fun yet? Yeah - I think so - despite the headline I put on this entry ;-) There's some neat stuff from Dom and Pina I still haven't caught up with yet, so stay tuned. And it's hard not to enjoy being a news junkey of late what with leaks, polls showing people starting to wake up, and Rush Limbaugh being exposed for what anyone with a grain of sense knew all along he was. And how about the Terminator crying "dirty" because people have discovered he's - well, dirty - just one more dirty old man with an outrageous ego.

Hey, I know my body is nothing to write home about - short, fat, aging and balding - so you can say I'm just jealous, but honestly those pictures of him in "Pumping Iron" just give me the creeps. I think a well-muscled human body can be beautiful, but body building just carries this to an extreme where from my perspective it becomes a freak show. My apologies to all you bodybuilders. MaybeI'm missing something.

Anyway, maybe this time we'll learn not to shortcut the political process with celebrity that has nothing to do with qualifications to solve serious problems. But I doubt it. Let's see, we can now look forward to Carl Rove frog-marched out of the White House in handcuffs and Arnold, arrested after taking the governor's chair, and charged with sexual assault. Dream on, Greg!

Honestly, though, all of this is kinda fun. What's not fun is tiger's going crazy in Las Vegas and far less fun - and this is the reason for my "Stop it, you idiots" headline - is a beautiful, Palestinian lawyer - apparently grieving because the Israelis killed her brothers - going in and blowing herself up and in the process killing 19 innocent Israelis. Now Israel will kill some more innocent - and maybe not so innocent - Palestinians. That's happening, I'm sure, as I post this. Then the Plaetsinaians will . . . my God, and these people think pacifists are impractical dreamers? How much of this inhuman stupidity do we have to witness before we understand that when you live by the childish ignorance of "an eye for an eye," the whole world ends up blind?

Maybe I'll go watch the Red Sox. Or meditate. Or eat too much popcorn.

Oh no! Brenda just popped in with this update. "15 members of the Red Sox have cut their hair to try to change their luck." Doesn't anybody read the Old Testament anymore? These people are doomed, as in Sampson. Of course, if it works, then maybe that other bunch of idiots will stop dragging ideas like "an eye for an eye" out of the same book.

Posted by Greg Stone at October 4, 2003 07:38 PM

One hit out of the in field? By george I think I'll start reading the Old Testament again.
Maybe we can overnight some Wigs!! If there is a tomorrow in Boston? (tied 1-1 in the 1oth as I post!)

Posted by: pstubbs at October 4, 2003 11:05 PM

"This is what playoff baseball is all about. This is Fenway at its finest," Nixon said.

Let's hope not! I mean Trott Nixon's homer winning it in the 11th was a good way to end it. But up until then, this looked like a bunch of Little Leaguers on the field. As Paul notes, the Red Sox couldn't get the ball out of the infield. They left more people stranded on the base paths then there were fans in the new Green Monster seats. And the A's? Well, I wonder how many suicides, wife beatings and other crimes of frustration there were in Oakland last night? These guys did everything in their power to lose the game last night and the Red Sox just didn't know how to accept the gift!

I mean, three errors in a single inning? Two of them on what should have been double-play balls? And later the catcher drops a pop-out right in front of the plate and the second baseman kicks a Texas leaguer half-way to right field? Then in an another inning the A's guy comes home with the tying run, gets blocked at the plate, misses it, doesn't even know it, and walks off only to be tagged when he's half-way to the dug out?

And if that wasn't bad enough, another A's player rounds third base, colliding with the third baseman. He assumed interference has been called and so he doesn't have to do anything. He just stands there a few feet from home plate and gets tagged out! Run dummy! Let the cops sot it out afterwards. A's fans you have my heartfelt sympathy.

Astrounding - and this while the poor A's pitcher is doing a terrific job shutting down a team of solid sluggers - not any ol' team of sluggers, either. These guys are better than the 1927 Yanks! Baseball has never seen anything like them. Yet until Nixon's home run they were ready to go out, not with a bang, but a whimper!

Hmmmm... Nixon was one of the guys who cut his hair - but he was the only one who cut his hair who hit like he should, so I'll still stick with the Samson theory. In the hitting department Nixon gets an "A" - in his assessment of what playoff baseball is all about, he flunks. Multimillionaire players should not look like a bunch of clowns and while the A's players are far from the highest paid in baseball, they make more than you and I ;-)

OK, so what next?

Presumably their hair starts to grow and their bats start to come to life. Last time I looked Manny was 1 for 12 in this series and Ortiz, candidate for MVP, was 0-12. My prediction? They'll knock the hell out of the A's pitching in the next two games and if the sorry Red Sox bull pen can keep the demoralized A's players to fewer than seven runs a game, the Red Sox will win this opening round of the playoffs.

So am I just feeling negative here - yeah, maybe. I mean this team does have one thing going for them. They are a team. I mean they're about as happy as a bunch of Little Leaguers when they win. And they really work together. And they really have fun. And that is something even more rare in professional baseball than being a team that can out-slug the 1927 Yankees. And more important. So go ahead guys - win it all - it would be sweet.

Posted by: Greg Stone at October 5, 2003 06:20 AM
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