Thursday, September 11, 2008

911 -- We Have Forgotten

This year marks the seventh anniversary of the 9/11 attack on the US (we’re not allowed to say “Moslem-led” attack lest we offend somebody), and few people in America can tell you the exact year it happened. As we enter the presidential election cycle, it is horribly obvious that we have forgotten what happened to us. Instead of focusing on the real issues that face this country – security, energy, education, health (in no particular order) – we focus on whether or not Barrack Obama called Sarah Palin a pig ( He didn’t. Even if he did, so what? There are bigger issues facing this country than name calling. Instead of holding the candidates’ feet to the fire on important issues, the press keeps giving us bizarre sound bites and non-stories. Does it really matter that Obama’s middle name is Hussein or that Palin’s daughter is pregnant out of wedlock? Perhaps the lack of a strategic energy policy is a tad more important than these personal issues.

Unfortunately, journalists are, generally, not intelligent enough to report or discuss the real issues. Important issues are reported with the same intellectual rigor as one would expect in People or Us. The media continues to oversimplify all political issues. This is most apparent in describing foreign policy. They simplistically divide the world into two groups: those who are our friends and those who are not currently our friends. The second group will become the first group if we give them McDonalds and democracy (in that order). Unfortunately, the reality is that the world is, in fact, divided into two groups: those who are currently screwing with us and those who are not currently screwing with us. The voters should make their choices accordingly.

Rather than being real patriots, taking control of our government, we sit by, dull wittedly, while the bureaucracy controls our lives through the “Patriot Act” (a scurrilous piece of doublespeak) and the politicians concern themselves exclusively with getting re-elected. This presidential election is the same as the last several ones. Instead of voting for the lesser of two evils, we have to vote for the person least likely to screw up the country.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Thank you, Dan Kreider

From 2000 to 2007 Dan Kreider was the best Steeler. I don’t mean he ran the most yards, caught the most passes, or scored the most touchdowns, the normal types of stats for fantasy football freaks. Rather, Kreider embodied everything great about the Steelers – the type of player the true fan appreciates. Kreider is a pure fullback. His purpose in life is to open holes for the running back to break through and score. During his time with the Steelers, he never sought the glory. He just did his job. And he did his job better than anybody else at that position – just ask Ray Lewis. One of the great memories I have of Kreider is when he came flying around the edge and pancaked the “greatest linebacker in the universe” not once, but twice in one game. Beautiful. Watching Kreider work was like watching a great artist. His arms and shoulders were his brushes, the opponents were his canvas, and their pain was his paint. Okay, that’s a bit over the top. But to watch Kreider work was to watch a thing of beauty. Kreider’s version of hard-working, grinding, smash-mouth football was the type of football all Steeler’s fans appreciate (

The Steelers have chosen to go in a different direction. They no longer need a pure fullback. This will be a mistake. Wilie Parker is a great running back, and Reshard Mendenhall shows potential. But without Kreider’s excellence opening holes for them to run through, Parker and Mendenhall will have 500 fewer yards rushing than they would have had running behind Kreider. Parker knew this when he said, “`He's like an extra lineman that can run and can move side to side. He's a great blocker and he takes pride in what he does. It would be kind of disappointing [if he were cut]. It would be surprising. Sometimes you want to stay away from a lot of that, if they cut him. I don't want to talk about my man like that. He takes pride in what he does and I love what he does.’" (

Thank you, Dan Kreider. I hope the Rams know what a phenomenal player they have in you.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The New Munich Conference

The EU’s extraordinary summit meeting to address Russia’s naked aggression against Georgia released its statement on 1 September (,1518,575761,00.html). This was a propitious date as it marks the 69th anniversary of the German invasion of Poland that started World War II in Europe. Perhaps the EU could have waited until the 16th, the 69th anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Poland. But I think the EU should have released their statement earlier, on 28 August, to commemorate the Munich Conference. This was the conference where the West, lead by the British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, appeased away Czechoslovakia’s freedom to avoid any possible conflict with Adolf Hitler.

It’s no wonder that the eastern members of the EU were the ones most interested in passing some kind of meaningful sanctions against Russia (; After all, they have experience in being sold out by the West to Russian aggression. They certainly remember the Soviet’s imperialism following World War Two.

Appeasement is a discredited policy. Knowing this, President Nicolas Sarkozy’s and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s actions are motivated by craven cowardice. Georgia is learning that treaties and promises are meaningless without the will to enforce them. As already demonstrated in the former Yugoslavia, the EU lacks the will to enforce collective security. It is as emasculated as the League of Nations. Without the will to project its force in issues crucial to its very existence – such as, for example, freedom – one must question the legitimacy of the EU itself.

Perhaps “national self-determination” has become passé for the Eurocracy. Perhaps the sufferings of people in one “country” (now considered an outmoded construct in our post-modern world) are of little concern for the greater good (for a truly pathetic assessment of the glories and qualities of the post-modern world, including “The rejection of force for resolving disputes and the consequent codification of self-enforced rules of behavior,” and “Security is based on transparency, mutual openness, interdependence and mutual vulnerability,” see Robert Cooper, “The Post Modern State,”

Or, perhaps the Eurocrats’ post-modernism is just a cover for cowardice. I think the latter.