January 8, 2014 § Leave a comment
Excerpted from and excerpt from the memoirs of Dr. Robert Gates, published at WSJ:
I was more or less continuously outraged by the parochial self-interest of all but a very few members of Congress. Any defense facility or contract in their district or state, no matter how superfluous or wasteful, was sacrosanct. I was constantly amazed and infuriated at the hypocrisy of those who most stridently attacked the Defense Department as inefficient and wasteful but fought tooth and nail to prevent any reduction in defense activities in their home state or district.
I also bristled at what’s become of congressional hearings, where rude, insulting, belittling, bullying and all too often highly personal attacks on witnesses by members of Congress violated nearly every norm of civil behavior. Members postured and acted as judge, jury and executioner. It was as though most members were in a permanent state of outrage or suffered from some sort of mental duress that warranted confinement or at least treatment for anger management.
I continue to worry about the incessant scorched-earth battling between Congress and the president (which I saw under both Bush and Obama) but even more about the weakening of the moderate center in Congress. Today, moderation is equated with lacking principles and compromise with “selling out.” Our political system has rarely been so polarized and unable to execute even the basic functions of government.
I found all of this dysfunction particularly troubling because of the enormity of the duties I shouldered. Until becoming secretary of defense, my exposure to war and those who fought it had come from antiseptic offices at the White House and CIA. Serving as secretary of defense made the abstract real, the antiseptic bloody and horrible. I saw up close the cost in lives ruined and lives lost.
January 7, 2014 § 5 Comments
A few things that enter my mind on a cold Tuesday during the dreaded polar vortex of 2014.
– I resolved to never visit the creationism museum, but I’d make an exception if I could score some scalped tickets to this.
– Since becoming involved with the US Armed Forces more than 20 years ago, I’ve heard many argue for an end to the Marine Corps (assimilated into the Army as a series of “Marine” or “Amphibious” divisions). However, this is the first I’ve read about an end to the Air Force. Is it time to return to the days of the War Department and the Department of the Navy? How will people who can’t swim or perform pushups serve in the armed forces? (just kidding, JMo)
– With great anticipation, the National Journal previews the upcoming senatorial catfight. US military men wait nervously to see which one wins–the seasoned prosecutor who wants to hold commanders accountable or the former biglaw bigwig who wants to make emasculation a mandatory condition for all male service members.
– Why does Popeye’s “spicy” chicken always seem spicier on the way out than it does on the way in?
– I really need to finish the second post on my series calling for a national conversation about the Voodoo Punanny Defense.
– Military same-sex spouses, rejoice! You’re well on your way to being as miserable as those of us who tried to warn you of the perils of marriage. On a more serious note, this is a huge move for the Department of Defense, and hopefully one that will provide more stability and peace of mind for all military families.
– Congratulations to Lieutenant Alonzo Cushing, who was selected to receive the Medal of Honor a mere 150 years after he gave his life at Gettysburg.
December 21, 2013 § 6 Comments
We at UA, the unofficial sponsors of Leo’s Donuts and Coffee House, are proud to announce Eric as the recipient of the first annual Maple Bacon Customer of the Year.
“In selecting our first annual Maple Bacon Customer of the Year, we wanted to find someone who embodies the strong principles of our vaunted Maple Bacon line, and we found just the right guy at the right time,” said Andra Shortt, owner of Leo’s. “Some of our customers are strong with bacon, but short on maple, or vice versa. In Eric’s case, he’s a veritable donut renaissance man.”*
When approached about this honor, Eric stated “No self-respecting lawyer wants to be associated with Starbucks, but being a Leo’s Lawyer is just fine with me,” before excusing himself to consume the fourth MBD of the day.
When asked later to clarify his thoughts, Eric exclaimed “Know Jared on the Subway commercials? I can see myself being that guy for Leo’s. As long as they’re willing to keep me supplied with insulin, I’m good with that.”
“I always knew I’d be here someday. I was born for it.”
Reaching the pinnacle of the donut world is no small feat, and congratulations are in order.
Asked for comment, Scott Greenfield, the New York-based prolific proprietor at Simple Justice, who is not the Leo’s Donuts Maple Bacon Customer of the Year, snorted “He just does this to torment me.”
*Not actual comments by Ms. Shortt, but comments we at UA hope she would say.
**Was not actually allowed to drive the Leomobile, but a guy can dream, can’t he?
December 12, 2013 § 8 Comments
December 12, 2013 § 4 Comments
While accepting an award yesterday from the local chamber of commerce, #63 had the privilege to meet Tom Mabe. For those of you who don’t know, he made a name for himself as a prankster, starting his career by torturing telemarketers.
I know everyone who reads this blog probably already saw this, but it’s worth another gander, just for the heck of it. It is especially good for those feeling a bit frustrated with law enforcement.
December 11, 2013 § 6 Comments
After years of debate over the merits of Lawrence v. Texas and pressure from powerful anti-anything-other-than-missionary-sex Christian lobbyists, congress is finally set to add consensual blow jobs and cornholing to the list of military benefits.
Via Military Times:
Consensual sodomy would no longer be a crime under the Uniform Code of Military Justice under a provision of a compromise defense bill agreed to by the leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services Committee.
This reminds me of a conversation with a young military member who, just last year, said “Don’t get me wrong, I’m grateful for the commissary and exchange privileges, medical care, and GI Bill, but it sure would be nice to get some consensual backdoor action without fear of prosecution.”
He was quick to clarify “And, I’m serious about the consensual part, despite what Gillibrand thinks about all us males in uniform.”
Prior to the change, this was the only form of cornholing allowed by the UCMJ, albeit begrudgingly:
While the ultimate fate of the current defense bill is not certain, optimism is high that a change to the law will toss the current maximum punishment of 5 years confinement and a dishonorable discharge.
Apparently, change would have come sooner, but the strong Washington animal lobby was fearful that a radical change would place the nation’s population of cuddly creatures (large or small) in peril at the hands of legions of lecherous military members.
The provision modifies Article 125 of the UCMJ so that bestiality and forcible sodomy remain a military criminal offense but consensual sodomy is not.
That distinction is intended to prevent a repeat of a situation two years ago when the Senate first tried to repeal Article 125 in light of the repeal of the military’s ban on open service by gays. Following the Senate vote, a firestorm of criticism was leveled at the defense bill by conservative pro-family groups claiming that Congress was trying to legalize bestiality.
Bless their hearts.
December 9, 2013 Comments Off
i want to be a second lieutenant what are the reason – Come back once you iron-out that grammar thing.
i want to be a second letieutenent what are the reason – Spelling, too.
unwashed balls – Fine, if kept in private. Certain religions make exceptions to this rule.
shitlaw – That’s us!
can a military conviction follow you in civian – Laws of civian strictly prohibit it.
can you get into college with a military discharge – All except UC Berkeley.
is it proper to refer to yourself as esquire if you are an attorney – Only if you want no friends.
google guys rasslin – If I get a ticket for this event, I’ll send it to you. I’m not interested.
do men like polished shoes – Real ones, yes.
when your accused in the military, your punished as your guilty – Is that what your lawyer told you?
what is avvo – Nothing worth your time.
yodle sucks – Yep.
what is it like to be second lieutenant military – Have you ever read Kafka?
should I put esq on my business cards – As long as you don’t plan to hand them out.
alexis neely reviews – Do we have a story to tell you…
do men like unwashed women – One of my college roommates had this thing for…..you know, let’s just move on to the next one.
george zimmerman verdict appeal – I’ve already been chastised for making fun of those who slept through high school civics. Don’t make me get chastised again.
waiving your adsep board – Stupid, stupid, stupid.
unwashed sex – OK, you have our attention.