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Showing posts from April, 2007

violence

There was a lot that I wanted to post on this week. However, the tragedy at Virginia Tech overwhelmed anything else.

And there was sad, senseless violence in many other places as well (e.g. - 180 killed in Iraq in one day).

I've been searching for a noun. None have seemed to fit. What do we call someone who slaughters schoolmates? Murderer seems inadequate somehow. Perhaps the term is overused on television cop and lawyer shows..... Madman? True, but also insufficient. I've settled, dissatisfied, on psychopath...

Having lived a number of years in Virgina, and having visited the Va Tech campus a few times, I know a number of alumni. It is a very solid school, where middle class families send their daughters and sons to study computer science or engineering or in some agriculture program. There is still a bucolic hint in Blacksburg, even though the area has grown steadily in recent years. One can be in farm country with only few minute drive from the campus.

I can't …

Donald Imus

The confluence of factors that caused Mr. Imus to lose not one, but two jobs, and the media attention that resulted, and continues, are an amazing commentary on life in America in 2007.

What matters..

First, and I've blogged on this before, is our increasing self-absorption. Last week, there was a significant new twist in the Iraqi conflict - car/truck bombs attempting to blow up major bridges. Did you know? While it was reported, it was drowned by our focus on ourselves and the increasing importance of avoidance of speech or writing which might hurt someone else's feelings.

His statement was worse than most of his insults, and perhaps more insensitive. I've been a listener for a decade or so, and would observe that his harshness is usually personal. That is, singling out some individual for attack - a politician, say, or the head of some business that Imus felt wronged or slighted by. Some of the kerfuffle here probably stems from the fact that Rutgers women were essentially…

Democratic strategy

I'll admit to being mystified by the Democratic party strategy on Iraq.

What is there to be gained by forcing a withdrawal timetable now? If the new strategy begins to be successful (early results are promising, but we've seen improving conditions deteriorate there before), then they look foolish. If the new strategy fails, then the Republicans were going to take the blame anyway.

It seems the only winning outcome for them is a failure that let's them say "I told you so". "I told you so" is usually not a popular phrase even among people who agree.

Why didn't they just stay on the sidelines a little longer? If the new plan worked, they could jump on the bandwagon.....

Pat Summit

I'm not a University of Tennessee sports fan.

However, I am a great admirer of Pat Summit.

Ms. Summit: congratulations on another championship.

For those of us college hoops fans who thought there would never be another John Wooden; we were wrong - there is - and her name is Summit.

She knows how to create a culture of performance and accountability. And, based on a number of observed facial expressions, I would say she knows how to give direct feedback....

congrats again.

Presidential race continued #4

Former Health and Welfare Secretary and four time Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson formally announced his candidacy for President on George Stephenopolis' show Sunday morning. And, before I could organize my post, Colorado Congressman Tom Tancredo launched his bid on Monday. With Vilsack out for money reasons, my count is now eleven declared Republicans and seven declared Democrats. However, I think both Newt Gingrich and Al Gore are running stealth campaigns, so I now call it a whopping 19 candidates. Have there ever been that many? I wonder....certainly not anything like that in my memory.

The last couple of weeks have brought some interesting, if very predictable, developments. First, Obama's poll numbers have stalled. Second, all the possible Guilani negatives are coming out. Both of these are predictable; as candidates get some momentum, the press begins snooping for any scandal, or just anything. Guilani's third wife seems to be the news generator on that side (…