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clarity of purpose
ignorance is death


W noted:
your recent [writings] are disturbing

   I agree. We living in disturbing times. As a thinking person, I think about them. As a writer, I write about them. As a solipsist, I share.
   However, I want to make one thing perfectly clear. I'm looking forward, not back. I don't advocate revenge; I advocate survival. Vengefulness is neither a survival trait, nor a moral behavior. Honestly, I believe Vengeance is the Lord's, both ours and theirs.
   I wish to strongly advocate the survival trait of self-defense. My moral sense says Never initiate violence; never ignore those who do. Self-defense is not limited to reacting at the instant of attack. Self-defense includes deterrence, forestalling those with a history of unprovoked attacks.
   Those were unprovoked attacks in New York and DC. Don't believe for an instant that the US invited terrorism by our actions. Our skirt was too short, so we deserved to be raped? Bzzzzzt. If US foreign policy changes, then we'll have no more terrorist attacks? Bzzzzzt.
   Believe that and your head stays in the clouds ... right until the moment of impact.
   I won't let such people take me with them.
   On Tuesday, the gun that has been pointed at us was proven to be loaded. No amount of political correctness will aim it elsewhere. Hey folks—they already shot us four times! How can we keep from being bloodied by a fifth or sixth? Some would have us hold up a badge and tell the terrorists that they're under arrest.
   I won't let such people take me with them.
   I say we shoot to kill and salt the earth. Disturbing, but true. The US government must end this threat in a manner serving as deterrent to others. Nothing of the kind should grow there again. Otherwise, we shall evermore risk terrorism on any US flight, on any US street, in any US office.
   This is not the world in which I plan to raise my son. I want him to live in the world before Tuesday. I want the gun pointed elsewhere than my son. I want the gunmen dead who dares threaten my son. That's why I pay taxes.
   N. Machiavelli: If we can't be loved, then we must be feared. M. Musashi: The fire and stones cut: Anticipate the attack and forestall it. These men lived long lives in violent times with quite disturbing philosophies.
   I'd like to, myself.
   Never initiate violence; never ignore those who have.

thought precedes action


   My father taught me that thought precedes action. I hope George senior taught this, too.
   There's a problem with the loudest rhetoric coming from Washington and the US population, this "shoot first and ask questions later" reasoning. It's unconscionably rabid and irresponsible. These head blind creatures want retribution, and fast. Instant gratification is the American way: fast food, fast cars, fast vengeance.
   Act in haste; repent in leisure.
   How can the US hold the government of Afghanistan responsible and accountable should Afgan residents without ties to the government prove to be responsible? Because the US has the biggest stick? Hogwash. Imagine the repercussions.
   Imagine that Tel Aviv and Jerusalem were bombed by a US resident with no relevant ties to the US Government. Let's call this insane bomber McV. Would the US government permit Israel to land a military force or to bomb McV's home/lab/compound? Would the US population? I think not. Imagine the repercussions.
   If Afghanistan did harbor and aid anti-US terrorists, then blood from a US attack would be on the Afghanistan government's hands for their poor policy. If Afghanistan did not harbor or aid, then the blood would be on the US' hands as poor policy makers, transforming the US into a wounded bully rather than a force of justice.
   The US President's restraint is awe inspiring, commendable, and required for the US to remain an icon of Western Freedom and Justice.
   Before reprisals are directed at anyone, the US must accurately discover—as opposed to prove—responsibility for last Tuesday's destruction. Regardless whether the US replies with warfare or criminal justice, there's too much careless rhetoric propagating these days, and that's irresponsibly dangerous to Afghanistan's innocents.
   We must see where evidence takes us, instead of using it to pave a road to Afghanistan.

weapons of our people
incalculable power


K wrote:
> how's life going?

   Foolishly, i watched CNN all day Tuesday, and learned i can be moved to curse out loud in a room without people. I viewed five different angles on the second tower impact, and learned on the fourth that i can grieve for strangers. I have seen the profile of Saturn in a Virginia crater, and know that those people are buryed deep in the land, for topsoil has less stopping power than concrete and glass.
   I know the dead once removed: one plane passenger and a half-dozen Trade Center workers—coworkers and friends of my friends. My step-grandmother was at the DC airport that morning, planning to fly west. She saw the pentagon burning before she heard the news. Sometimes i cry when i realize a new connection.
   My infant son appears worried when i contemplate these things. We no longer watch the news together. When he's happy, I sometimes think: what is this world our chilldren will inherit?
   A conservative is a person with something to conserve. HELLO.
   After three days being offended by the word, i have come to agree this must be war. Identify the surviving terrorists accurately, and kill them efficiently. Make reply in the only language they understand. An eye for an eye.
   How can I maintain killing is always wrong, but advocate a death penalty? This contradiction i cannot afford to ignore. Yet personal reconciliations may have to wait. There are lesser evils.
   Survival of the fittest is not comprised of moral decisions. The president has to balance two duties, but acting in the moral high-ground against an irrational people is less important than protecting US citizens from violent enemies. Courts and due process must never shield an uncivil people from a civil one.
   They made a weapon of our people, so each of us may evermore wonder what it was like.
   We must tell them in their mother tongue.

The Martyr
by Herman Melville

upon the death of Abraham Lincoln


There is sobbing of the strong,
And a pall upon the land;
But the People in their weeping
Bare the iron hand;
Beware the People weeping 
When they bare the iron hand.

my weekend was faire
a lifetime ago


   The weekend before Bloody Tuesday, we took Gabriel Paul to the Renaissance Faire in north bay, where the ambiance is set a full 400 years ago, in jolly old England. The faire now seems like another world: swords and armor, England and Scotland ... Plus la change, c'est le meme chose. Ahh ...
   Deb and I dress in medieval costume, having assembled appropriate “garb” over the last fifteen or so faire seasons. We tend to eat our way through faire: munching on huge turkey drumsticks, shepherd's pie, piroski cinnamon-baked almonds, toad-in-a-hole, jack-in-the-beanstalk—all the while dashing it all down with gallons of water, honey mead, and beer.
   Gabe, as you can see, enjoyed the faire much the way we do.

father and son   family a faire
mother and son

   My childhood friend Zimri flew in from England to take these photos. Mine will have to wait until my laptop returns from warranty repair. TC moved that sign just so. We met Chris and Jen, who we hope to see in garb next time.

sex, perl, and rock-n-roll
but not in that order


   There's a little-known fact that something generates more internet searches than anything else on the web, something so big it overshadows the strings sex and mp3.
   I'll tell you what it is.
   My friend Amy works at Real Names, one of the internet companies that determines a core functionality of today's world wide web. They ain't the dot in dot com, but if you've recently updated your web browser, or used a search angine, you're executing code from Real Names.
   One of Amy's duties is to write scripts that automate the testing of internet search engines. She told me she always uses the same character string, which is her job title from many years ago at the company where we met. So in the shipping product with Amy's test suite, the search engine test script looks on the web for Amy's job title, every second or two, as long as it runs.
   Anyone who's anyone in computing prefers not to rewrite existing code. This means most of Real Names' customers use Amy's scripts as-is for testing their own search engines. Real Names has lots of customers, so there's a whole lot of testing with Amy's script, ongoing, every minute of every day and night. Matter of fact, there's so much searching on the web for Amy's job title that webmasters and statisticians are noticing all over. Nowadays when you do a search, you'll come up with unrelated websites that embed Amy's string in their HTML, just like websites that embed sex and mp3 in HTML about unrelated topics, merely to generate hits for their own evil purposes.
   Amy mentioned this grad student in Colorado, her website contantly inundated by countless search engine robots, a woman who probably fancies herself the original Perl Princess.
   Now you know better.

   Another friend, Carol, introduced coffee to the namer of the Java programming language. The internet may be huge, but it's a small valley, chock full of trivia.

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