Sunday, December 29, 2002

To Saddam:

"War is upon you, whether you would risk it or not."- Aragon from LOTR

WASHINGTON - The Pentagon has ordered a major military force to the Persian Gulf in preparation for a possible war with Iraq.

Thousands of troops, two aircraft carrier battle groups and scores of combat aircraft have received orders since Christmas to ready themselves to head to the region in January and February, defense officials said Friday. Military personnel will go to Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and Bahrain, among other locations.

The Bush administration waited until after the holiday to issue the orders, which alert units across the United States and possibly overseas to prepare for deployment to the Persian Gulf, officials said. Officials said tens of thousands of military personnel will receive orders to go to the region, but a precise figure was unavailable.

Some of the units being sent to the region are combat-ready, including infantry units, warships and strike aircraft, officials said. Many more are logistics, engineering and support teams, which will prepare for the arrival of even larger combat units in the months ahead, officials said. They will add to the 50,000 U.S. military personnel already in the region.

Perhaps the most disturbing part of this article is

Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said last week such deployments will "reinforce diplomacy." The Bush administration hopes the threat of military action will increase the pressure on Iraqi President Saddam Hussein (news - web sites) to fully disclose his efforts to acquire chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.

Tuesday, December 24, 2002


America tore out 8000 pages of Iraq dossier:

THE United States edited out more than 8000 crucial pages of Iraq's 11,800-page dossier on weapons, before passing on a sanitised version to the 10 non-permanent members of the United Nations security council.

The full extent of Washington's complete control over who sees what in the crucial Iraqi dossier calls into question the allegations made by US Secretary of State Colin Powell that 'omissions' in the document constituted a 'material breach' of the latest UN resolution on Iraq.

This news has two major implications. 1) Gathering international support for a war on Iraq would be more difficult if the US made the non-permanent members of the Security Council (who received the sanitized dossier) feel like "second-class countries." 2) All this bluster about how Iraq has drastic omissions in its dossier can't be independently verified--any 'omissions' maybe just be censored information from the Iraq dossier.

What a dumb move. Even if the US didn't intentially tamper with or skew the dossier, other countries won't buy it.

Friday, December 20, 2002


Me, Phuc, and Phuc's dad all got speeding tickets in the past three months. Now the Evill CAP reports Evansville police officers to get new wheels:

Evansville residents can expect to see more police cars on the roads and in their neighborhoods in 2003.

The city's police department received permission Wednesday to seek bids on about 44 new police cars, Chief Dave Gulledge said. Some of the cars will replace old cars, others will allow more officers to take their cars home after work.

I'm sorry, but even if more police cars will make people feel safer because of the greater visibility of the prescense of police, I just cannot support this decision. The entire system of speeding tickets is corrupt to me, and until the police department gets a more legitimate means of finance I can't support any new spending by the police. Search on Google for: speeding ticket quotas. Interesting reads....

There's not much else to say. The government is INSANE:

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Hundreds of Iranian and other Middle East citizens were in southern California jails on Wednesday after coming forward to comply with a new rule to register with immigration authorities only to wind up handcuffed and behind bars.

Shocked and frustrated Islamic and immigrant groups estimate that more than 500 people have been arrested in Los Angeles, neighboring Orange County and San Diego in the past three days under a new nationwide anti-terrorism program. Some unconfirmed reports put the figure as high as 1,000. [...]

The Iranian protesters said many of those detained were victims of official delays in processing visa and green card requests.

"My father, they just took him in," one young man told reporters. "They've been treating him like an animal. They put him in a room with, like, 50 other people and no bed or anything."

Khan said one of those in jail was a doctor, who was being sponsored for U.S. citizenship when his sponsor died. (Full Text)

Thursday, December 19, 2002

Why not NK?

With the Bush Administration investing so much political and diplomatic capital in Iraq, (just today US ambassador to the UN John Negroponte claims that Iraq is in material breach of the UN inspection resolutions), why has the administration not pushed as adamantly for disarmament of Iran and North Korea, the other two-thirds of the "Axis of Evil?" For example, last week a North Korean shipment of Scud missiles were intercepted off the coast of Yemen. Bush didn't whip up any war rhetoric against NK as he probably would have done if those were Iraq Scuds. The answer, according to George Gedda of the Associated Press, is that three weeks after Bush's infamous State of the Union address, President Kim Dae-Jong of South Korea warned Bush of the dangers of another Korean War.

According to sources familiar with their conversation, Bush was taken aback by Kim's account of the horrendous death and destruction that would result from another Korean War.

Kim reportedly cited 1994 estimates by the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff as the basis for his assessment. The potential American dead in such a conflict would not be limited to the 37,000 U.S. servicemen in South Korea (news - web sites) but also would include the tens of thousands of other Americans, most of whom live in the Seoul area, Bush was told.

Seoul sits within easy range of North Korean artillery deployed just across the Demilitarized Zone. War undoubtedly also would kill or displace hundreds of thousands from both sides, as did the first Korean War in 1950- 53. (Full Text)

Ok. So basically Bush doesn't want to mess with North Korea because of its overall military readiness (ballistic missile arsenal, well-armed standing army, artillery divisions, and two nuclear warheads) and its warming relations with its neighbors (China, Russia, South Korea, and Japan). Iraq, meanwhile, is militarily (and literally) in shambles and is isolated internationally with the exception of Russia, who helped defeat Iraq in the Persian Gulf War anyways. Seems logical, if a little unfair.

But the results of this inequality extend further than morality and justice--it has implications on US foreign relations and nuclear proliferation. Developing countries comparing Iraq's and NK's current situation could deduce that in order to rid themselves of Yankee oppression, they'd just have to build up a huge army and develop weapons of mass destruction, and simply avoiding making a fatal mistake that could provoke an all-out US response, such as the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. Nuclear proliferation and increasing third world militancy could result from the Bush administrations current policy.

How should they solve this problem? Well solving the inequality would mean either A) taking a threatening, hardline stance against North Korea, B) backing off of Iraq or C) working to solve the North Korea problem.

Option A is too risky for Bush in a number of ways. Option B is unlikely for Bush to do, and a complete cessation of pressuring Iraq would actually have a negative effect. The recommended choice then would be C, maybe with a little of B implemented too.

North Korea is not as backwards as the administration would have us believe. Although NK "develops nuclear weapons while its people starve" its only to keep a bargaining chip against the US, as it is currently doing. North Korea actually ideally desires peace! It has continually pushed for a Nonagression Pact between the US and North Korea, which would let North Korea lower its military readiness and invest in modernizing its economy. Bush, however, has refused to even start negotiating such a treaty until North Korea forswears its nuclear weapons programme.

A solution proposed by some is by convincing China, North Korea's largest supplier of materials and oil, to pressure North Korea to disarm, peace will ensue. This is assuming that China complies with the US, and that NK complies with China, however. Bush could simply buy off North Korea. Reopen fuel shipments. Promise investment in the North Korean economy. Pledge billions in aid.

Whichever way Bush decides to ease the North Korean threat and open it to the US, the end result would be a much more fair world with less proliferation.

Mike Knight writes, "Why is it, then, that the Bush administration has continually asserted North Korea as a member of the axis of evil? The answer is the Bush administration (mostly Rumsfeld) needs justification for a national missile defense system..." (Full Text) The solution to this problem is obvious: stop construction of NMD! Obviously I'm being idealistic but maybe light of the consideration that NMD has failed on 3 out of 8 rigged tests, as pointed out earlier this week.
No, I don't know what the floating head is there for

But The Big Picture comic series is hilarious.

Hi Mr. Lin, we have a great holiday gift idea...

(I hang up)*click*

I HATE telemarketers. Even when we had caller ID I had to at least run upstairs to the caller ID unit and see if the caller were a telemarketer or a friend. Nowadays I just pick up the phone and after I say hello two times, if no immediate response comes, or the greeting is "Hello, Mr Lin?" I just hang up. But all this is going to be solved soon. Yahoo reports: Feds Promise Crack Down on Telemarketers:

WASHINGTON - People perturbed by telemarketing calls that disrupt dinner or ruin a rest can soon enjoy the sound of silence by enrolling in a national "do-not-call' list intended to cut off many unwanted telephone sales pitches.

Federal rules made public Wednesday require telemarketers to transmit identifying information that can be viewed by services such as Caller ID, and limit the number of "abandoned" calls that hang up or leave people listening to dead air on the line.

Thanks for the great gift Uncle Sam!

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

The Case of the Dirigiste State

Pair Retire to 16 Years of French Candlelight:

PARIS (Reuters) - A British couple who moved to a cottage in the south of France 16 years ago have been reading by candlelight and cooking with firewood ever since, all because their home is a few paces out of reach of electricity.

A pylon stands nearby their hideaway, nestled in the Cevennes hills, but it would cost the retired couple 15,000 euros to install a transformer to connect the cottage, French media reported on Monday.

"Without television, I have never read so much. After five years you start forgetting books so you can re-read them. It's quite practical," said Adrian Talbot, who has lost hope that Electricite de France will ever offer to connect them.

Opticians have reassured the Talbots their children's eyes will not have been damaged by 16 years of doing homework by candlelight. "The opticians told us there was no problem. On the contrary, it's a less aggressive form of light," Talbot said.

The former art teacher and his wife fell in love with the cottage during a holiday to the region in the south-central area of France but never imagined they would spend their retirement collecting firewood to heat the place.

The couple, who would have had the cost of installing electricity subsidized if they had chosen a house in a village a few yards down the road, recently invested in a generator which enables them to run a washing-machine for two hours a day.

Let's all do the Al Gore Macarena!

Gore Scores with Best 'SNL' Season Ratings

HOLLYWOOD (Variety) - First he won the popular vote; now Al Gore has won the Nielsen race as well.

NBC's Dec. 14 edition of "Saturday Night Live," hosted by the former vice president, scored the sketch show's best household ratings of the season in the top "metered" markets, and ranked as its best performance since last February (an episode hosted by Britney Spears).

I have to say, Gore has a much better sense of humor now. I saw him on Leno the other night and he was hilarious. One time he described how after the court decision to bar the vote recount in Florida was issued, he got an offer from"Hi, I am former Vice-President Al Gore, and I'm out of a job."

Or another commercial offer Gore talked about receiving was from some restaurant. He would have been counting the number of chicken fingers (or something similar) he got...and recounting....and recounting...haha.

It's a disappointment that Gore won't run in 2004. I didn't especially support him in 2000 but now he seems more personable. Not only would he have been a candidate capable of toppling Bush, even if he lost the Democratic nomination at least he could throw his support to the eventual Democratic candidate, further unifying the Democratic vote. But Gore has his one reasons for not seeking election, and we have to respect that.

Sunday, December 15, 2002

"I know that money can't buy you love...

but love can't buy you s***." - Beau Sia

From the same people who brought you "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire," "Joe Millionaire" is scheduled to air in January. JM is a parody of ABC's "The Bachelor", only with one, evil twist. Like TB, Joe will get to choose among a pool of prospective girlfriends. However, Joe's pool of girls are all fooled into believing that the male is a multimillionaire. At the end of the show, when Joe finally singles out one girl, he'll reveal his true identity--peasant construction worker, earning less than $20,000 a year--and the American audience can watch and see the girl's reaction.

I have no idea how this show will turn out. But it's thoroughly evil--I'll give it a shot.

GOP Senator Calls for Referendum on Lott

WASHINGTON - The Senate's No. 2 Republican leader broke ranks with GOP colleagues and called Sunday for a new election for majority leader, saying Sen. Trent Lott may be so weakened that his continued service in that job could jeopardize the party's legislative agenda.

The comments by Sen. Don Nickles of Oklahoma were the first sign of rebellion among Republican senators. They have watched closely to see Lott's repeated apologies would defuse the controversy that has raged since his racially charged comments at a birthday party for South Carolina Sen. Strom Thurmond.

This is crazy. Who has even heard of this Don Nickles? Accept Lott's apology and move on Nickles. Not like you could win power in the Senate, as no one knows you.

I'm back from the Chesterton debate meet and SM will be kept updated again. At Chesterton Signature didn't have as much success as it hoped for, but Chrissi Gentry was second in the voting for Congress finals PO and Alex and I would have made semifinals if we won our powermatched last preliminary round (we were 3-2, our only two losses were to two Chesterton teams who both made it to semis).

Friday, December 13, 2002


Sig has a pair of jumper cables for students to use in case someone leaves their headlights on. Ask Ms. Pate for them if you find your battery dead.

Thursday, December 12, 2002


The Eville CAP reports Evansville Could be More Park Friendly Soon:

Evansville could soon become a city within a park. The Evansville Parks and Recreation Board unveiled its new master plan for the next five years. New parks on the edge of the city could become a reality and they could somehow all be linked.

The EPRB already has plans to build spray parks in place of the never used Tepe and Helfrich pools. Good idea.

I vaguely remember independently coming up with a similar parkizing plan in 8th grade, writing a letter to the mayor for an English assignment. I mentioned two things:

1) Evansville's parks need to be unified
2) The West Side needs some parks

At the time I was not aware of Howell Park by Reitz HS. Still, Howell is hardly accessible from where I live. If some connection were made between USI and the other parks in Evansville, "my quality of life would greatly increase."

Bravo to the EPRB. Hopefully their plan will be a success.
He's a Mean One....

Not only has Santa been slain, his replacements aren't doing a good job. Boy arrested after stuck in chimney:

SAN DIEGO (Reuters) - Even Cindy Lou Who wouldn't be fooled by this Grinch.

A 16-year-old boy who apparently spent much of the night stuck in a chimney in the San Diego suburb of San Ysidro was arrested, along with two of his friends, early on Wednesday after firefighters freed him.

Authorities said the boy, whose name was not released, claimed that he had been stargazing on the roof and fell into the chimney with a clatter.

Police, who apparently suspected him of more Grinch-like motives, were called to the scene at 5 a.m. local time and firefighters were forced to break apart the chimney to get him out. The boy was unhurt.

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

This is a sad story

Vicar Slays Santa, Shocks Children:

LONDON (Reuters) - A British vicar reduced young children to tears and stunned their parents when he said Santa Claus and his reindeer would burn to a crisp while delivering presents at supersonic speed.

Stand-in vicar Lee Rayfield shattered the illusions of dozens of kids when he joked in his carol service sermon that Santa and his reindeer would burn up doing 3,000 times the speed of sound as they delivered gifts to 91.8 million homes.

"I am mortified and appreciate that I have put some parents in a difficult position with a lot of explaining to do," Rayfield told Wednesday's Daily Telegraph. "I love Christmas."

Newspapers said many children at the school service at St Mary's Church in Maidenhead, west of London, were distraught when Rayfield pointed out that it was logically impossible for one man and his sleigh to deliver 378 million presents in just 31 hours.

"There were a lot of children there who still believe in Santa Claus, or did so until last night," Sue Smee, who attended the service with her five- and nine- year-old sons, told the Daily Mirror. "It has left us parents with a lot of explaining to do today," she added.
A Great Injustice: My Finals

I am in a very select group of students at Sig who were FOOOOOOOOLISH enough to sign up for AP Calc and AP Chem in 1st and 2nd periods. The Final Exam schedule has been released on the Signature website, and we have back-to-back Calc-Chem finals, arguably the two toughest classes I know of at Sig. Last time we had back-to-back Calc-Chem chapter tests, our Calc class ended up 10% lower than the 4th period, nonAPChem-taking Calc class. Hm. Might have something to do with how everyone stays up the whole night studying for Mr. Thread's test but then falls asleep as they start to study Calc.

"It seems like God is on Mr. Thread's side."

Anyhow, finals are next week. Gotta get cracking.

*yeah, I know. I used to never cram for finals. Never until this year.
PSAT updates

Mrs. Gibson has our PSAT scores but will only show us our scores after Christmas break, when she'll go over our scores with us. I'd like to see my scores now...but I guess I can wait. For a little bit.

Anyhow, the PSAT is actually administered two times every year, one day during the school week and then the Saturday of that week the test (a different version) is given again. This year's Saturday test had an error, as reported by the College Board. Here's the problem:

Explanation of the Problem

Math question 32 in Section 4 of the Saturday form of the PSAT/NMSQT was not scored because of a flaw in the question. The following is an explanation of the problem:

The product of the integers from 1 through 10 is equal to 2j × 3k × 52 × 7.


For Quantitative Comparison questions, you are to compare the two quantities in the boxes and on the answer sheet fill in oval


A  if the quantity in Column A is greater;

B  if the quantity in Column B is greater;

C  if the two quantities are equal;

D  if the relationship cannot be determined from the information given.


I worked it out and got j = 8 and k = 4 (answer choice A); however, the question does not specify that j and k have to be theoretically I could have j = 0 and k = 9.0474…so "the relationship cannot be determined from the information given."

Tricky tricky. Good thing they threw this question out of grading. Well, actually, I took the other version of the PSAT--so this concession doesn't help me. In fact it probably hurts my score comparatively. Ah well.

update(Dec 11): A reliable source tells me that there are two 219s, one of which the source earned. And there was also a 231! And to round it off there were several other 200s in the Junior class. Once again, if Sig has much higher PSAT averages than the EVSC or Day School that doesn't necessarily show that Sig has better teachers (Ms. Gregg did help some on the English and Writing sections, but my Math section woulda been the same had I stayed at Reitz this year), but it will show that Sig has a environment where people take learning seriously. I'm just curious...

Tuesday, December 10, 2002


FBI Agent: Sept. 11 Hijackers Probably Used Gas:

HAMBURG, Germany (Reuters) - The Sept. 11 hijackers probably used gas or spray such as mace against passengers and crew on the first plane to hit the World Trade Center, an FBI agent told a German court Tuesday.

FBI special agent Matthew Walsh, giving evidence at the trial of Mounir El Motassadeq, the first suspected conspirator to stand trial, said a stewardess on board had said in a telephone conversation that she was having trouble breathing.

Walsh told the court in Hamburg the American Airlines stewardess said a number of people had been stabbed.

"She also stated it was very hard to breathe, so we assume that mace or another gas was used," he said. "Mace is an irritant spray commonly used to ward off assailants.


The Eville Courier and Press today printed all the local high schools' ISTEP passing rates. Signature School's sophomores all passed! A 100% passing rate for both language and math sections!!!!!

Ok so maybe that's not so exiciting. The ISTEP isn't all that difficult to pass if you try anyhow. But comparatively, Sig set a good precedent. Instead of following the EVSC's path (less than 70% of sophomores passing), Signature has gone further than even Evansville Day School (which has a 96% language, 100% math passing rate). Although I don't think Sig's class of 05 is amazing, it did what it needed to--not something I could say for any of the EVSC schools.

Another thing that the article mentions is

Research shows that average scores on standardized tests, such as ISTEP, are related to family income with the highest scores coming from highest-income areas.

Interesting. An income/achievement gap definitely exists on the SAT, but even on the simple ISTEP? The combination of horrible passing rates and the presence of an income/achievement gap shows how badly the EVSC and Indiana education as a whole need to reform.

Sunday, December 08, 2002


Yesterday Sig "rocked the cabash" at the Central Debate Meet.

Chrissi Gentry - 1

Novice Policy
Emilie/Elliot - 1

Varsity Policy
Amy/Nirav - 1
Alex/Sibo - 2
(both teams have 3-0 records, tie broken by speaks)

In other forensics news, Reitz went up to the Bradley Speech Invitational and had a great showing in the analytical events. Ashley Burgdorf and Matt Hollander qualled for extemp semifinals. Melody Berry got 2nd and Adam Burgdorf got 5th! Melody also finaled in impromptu...Sig has yet to begin preparation for its analytical events--looks like Reitz will be VERY difficult to top.

At least I'm not a Texan

Texan Killed Friend Who Drank Last Cold Beer:

BANDERA, Texas (Reuters) - A jury on Thursday handed a life prison sentence to a Texas man who shot and killed a longtime friend he accused of drinking the last beer in his refrigerator.

Jurors deliberated for less than two hours before passing the sentence on Steven Brasher, 42, for the murder of Willie Lawson, 39, on Nov. 5 last year.

"There was only two beers left, so I took one, and I told Willie not to take my last beer," Brasher said in a taped statement that was played during the trial.

Testimony showed Brasher shot Lawson in the head with a pistol after the two began arguing over the missing beer. Brasher maintained the shooting was an accident.
Once Upon a December...

The Winter Formal was a success! Turnout was great, the music was pretty good, and everyone danced. Let me say that the Halloween dance was HORRIBLE by comparison. Or as Matt McConnell put it, a dentist appointment would be better than the Halloween dance.

So for anyone who didn't go to the Winter Formal--you should have really been there. Your next chance is Signature's Prom at the Pagoda. Be there.

And Phuc is not allowed to make any more origami roses. He's surpassed his allowance for the next two and a half semesters.

Saturday, December 07, 2002

Techincal Difficulties

I found this link on Hoosier Review. It's great stuff.

Dubya Dubya Dubya. Check it.
Bobblehead Jesus!

Finally, it's here! Football Jesus too!

Buy your own Bobblehead Jesus!

Thursday, December 05, 2002

Bush plays his hand

Earlier this week I asked what Bush wants or what he knows that we don't in response to his disapproval of Iraqi compliance with arms inspections. Today Bush played his card: he knows something we don't.

WASHINGTON (AP) - The White House said Thursday it possesses solid evidence that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction, and rejected Baghdad's denials, saying they have no credibility.

President Bush, asked if the United States was headed toward war, said: "That's a question you should ask to Saddam Hussein."

Full Text

One possibility is that Bush is only bluffing, hoping that Iraq will confess a weapons of mass destruction programme Saturday. That would a diplomatically risky but potentially rewarding bluff.

"The president of the United States and the secretary of defense would not assert as plainly and bluntly as they have that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction if it was not true, and if they did not have a solid basis for saying it," Fleischer said. "The Iraqi government has proved time and time again to deceive, to mislead and to lie."

More likely, Bush has solid evidence of Iraqi possession of WMDs, and has known about this evidence for some time. He's probably held this evidence secret to force the UN into a stance against Iraq. Now that the UN has a new resolution on Iraq, if Iraq flouted this resolution then the UN would have to respond in order to retain its legitimacy--Bush has been very savvy in forcing the rest of the world into this position. So, if Bush has real evidence against Iraq, expect a war against Iraq regardless of the Iraqi response.

If the UN supports the war, then the UN will once again be under the thumb of the US as it was for the years after the fall of the Soviet Union.

If the UN continues to oppose war, it will become obsolete as the US will forego it, much as NATO has become obsolete in the past years. Whereas NATO was superceded in America's agenda by the UN, the UN will be superceded by a US-led coalition. If that politics might get ugly.

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Excellent critique

...of Kingsolver's works. Here.

*update: Dec 5--fixed the above link*
Let it snow!

Yesterday, Phuc wore red duct tape flip flops ("Long live Chairman Mao!"); the prophet Lynch interpreted this as a sign that there would be enough snow today to cancel school. As it turns out, Lynch did not miss predicting a snow day ever, until last year. Lynch the Prophet/Weatherman was right again about today, or at least half right.

Ms. Snyder dismissed us after lunch, as around one inch of snow had collected on the ground. As I'm typing this up, snow continues to fall.

While the amount of snow forced an impromptu half day, the fact that Ms. Synder ended school early came as a surprise; just yesterday she announced that Signature School would not follow the EVSC's cancellation and delay announcements. Signature would have its own announcements, so as to ensure that classes could continue on days when there wasn't a lot of snow but the EVSC cancelled school anyway.

Strangely enough, the EVSC had a full day today. Why did Snyder let us out but the EVSC keep school in session full day? Signature School has the unique situation of not having any students ride a bus system home--all the students either drive, carpool, walk, or have their parents pick them up. Since Signature is in downtown Evansville, the roads are not in optimized condition--there are too many roads downtown to salt and plow them all. The combination of most everyone riding in cars and the downtown roads not being clear means that Sig students are at a much higher risk, percentage-wise, than EVSC students for getting into snow-caused accidents (which Evansville had plenty of today).

Driving home today I slid twice by the Civic Center alone. But I'm OK, so don't worry :)

Signature's independent cancellation and delay system is a great idea, not only so that classes can continue but also to ensure less traffic accidents for its students.

Long live Principal Snyder!

Monday, December 02, 2002

Affirmative action

As the Supreme Court is about to decide a potentially landmark case on the constitutionality of affirmative action, the British Medical Journal raises a relevant point: US medical schools should consider race in admitting students:

A more diverse medical profession would improve cultural competency (understanding the beliefs and language of patients), increase patients' access to good health services (as doctors from minority ethnic groups often choose to practise in their own communities), strengthen medical research (addressing health issues important to minority communities), and improve diversity in health managers (executives and policy makers).

While I am against affirmative action in most cases, the BMJ makes a convincing statement, some professions should be diverse, not so that those professionals receive a multicultural educational experience (what BS is that??) but so that they can serve the multicultural public better. The trouble is dividing the public service professions from the corporate service jobs...
What does he want or what does he know?

Yahoo reports Bush: Iraq Inspections 'Not Encouraging':

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Bush warned Iraq's Saddam Hussein that he has until a Sunday deadline to prove he is serious about averting war. After the first week of United Nations weapons inspections, Bush said: "So far, the signs are not encouraging."

"The inspectors are not in Iraq to play hide-and- seek with Mr. Saddam Hussein," the president said Monday in a get-tough speech at the Pentagon, his first extensive comment on the United Nations weapons inspections since they got underway last week.

What does Bush want? So far there has been superb Iraqi compliance with the new UN mandates, even in the opinions of the inspectors themselves. Of course the Iraqi military continues to shoot at American and British planes patrolling the no-fly zones, but suppose for just a second that Iraq really has been free of weapons of mass destruction for all these years. Suppose that these sanctions have been used by the American government for leverage for cheaper oil prices. One could sympathize with Iraq's actions then. If Canada claimed that the US had illegal biological weapons, and imposed a no-fly zone over Maine, while building up troops on New Foundland, the US would attempt to shoot down the Canadian planes, no question.

Just because the accused nation is the weaker nation now in the real world, it shouldn't change the fairness of everyone's actions. Iraq is innocent until proven guilty and thus far Iraq has actually provided significant evidence that it is innocent. Bush says that Iraq's compliance is "not encouraging"--what does he want? Either Bush is hiding relevant knowledge from us, or he wants war. Either possibility is disturbing.

Even if Iraq turns out to be lying about its termination of all weapons of mass destruction, Bush had better provide some justification now as to why Iraq's compliance with the new UN mandates is "not encouraging."
As everyone should already know, the national dog show was on this past thanksgiving weekend. As we leave the house my mom screams to my dad to go tape it so she can watch it later with our dog Audrey. Audrey is a 5 lb. maltese that my mom is obsessed with. I mean she dresses this dog up, takes her for rides in the car to get ice cream, babies her, etc. The dog even has pj's to wear to bed...Does anyone else out there think that this is sick and sad, or is is just a mid life crisis thing?

Sunday, December 01, 2002

It's Christmas Time, in the E-town...

Dave Barry has a HILARIOUS article on carols.

Speaking of carols, I've gotta say The 12 Redneck Days of Christmas by Jeff Foxworthy holds a special place in my heart.
Trivia about last year's AP

- some of the 9's on the world history test were illegible
- none of the 9's were docked for (very)poor grammar
- the most difficult test to get a 5 on was US govt
- the easiest to get a 5 on was Calculus BC
-the hardest test to get a 1 on was Studio Art Drawing
- freshmen had a higher % of 5's then any of the other grades
- 17.4% of Asians got 5's--14.6% of white's got 5's (all other groups fared worse)
-CT and MA were the smartest states (tie)

All of this was derived from spreadsheets from AP Central.