First, let me repeat what I had written the day after the Muslim Attacks.
First, let me say that there is no such thing as a good or holy war.
Fanatics with dreams of earning a place in paradise, who kill themselves and take as many blameless people as they can, go to Hell. There is no salvation for them. They have thrown themselves away like used wads of toilet paper. Let such as they be remembered as the evil sons of bitches that they are. And let those who cheer the vile acts of these murderers have their suffering grow tenfold!
I stand by that statement still.
The destruction of human life, just because one does not like Americans polluting the holy soil of Islam, can only earn the murderers a one-way ticket to Hell. The murderers are still there, writhing in the misery of having been deceived — or, worse, forcing themselves out of pride to refuse to believe that they were deceived — while the deceivers live on, tucked in their hideaways, exalting themselves in the glory of the struggle.
And here is why this has lasted for so long. Those deceivers, while deceived in their eternal destiny, find justification in their struggle with the continual American occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan.
I also stand by what I said about the World Trade Center: The buildings were ugly monstrosities; if not for the massive loss of life, their destruction was the best thing that could happen to the New York skyline. Now they are building even worse monstrosities on the site!
We had a reason to invade Afghanistan, true. But we should have left once a new State was founded. More than that, we should have taken out the root cause of the Taliban: Pakistan. Pakistan is from where the Taliban come, where they were taught by radical Sa’udi-funded Wahabist madâris; and where Pakistani spy agencies provide the money, protection and logistics that ensured the Taliban’s success. If we had invaded Pakistan to finish off the Taliban and their backers, we would have been out of South Asia sooner and Pakistan would not be such a bane.
As for Iraq, we should never have gone in, no matter how many falsehoods El Dubya pulled out of his rear orifice. Or, as an alternative, we should have just killed Saddam Hussein and let his successors fight it out for control. The results would have been the same, either way. Nor does it matter what others say: We conquered the country for its oil and to clean up the mess El Dubya’s father left behind in 1990. (Why Tony Blair decided to make Britain join us is anyone’s guess.)
Then, after the conquest, we screwed up by dissolving the regular army and the state apparatus. Why? A certain bureaucrat decided that the Ba’ath Party is identical to the Nazi Party. And since the soldiers and bureaucrats had to join the Ba’ath Party to get their jobs — out they go! Not only was idea stupid on its face, it forced otherwise-cooperative but now-unemployed soldiers and bureaucrats to become the fighters and organizers of the many guerrilla groups fighting our troops!
But what is the most incomprehensive is that a president elected to end the war has instead continued the war in one country and the occupation in another. The American people want the wars to stop. The president has refused to do so, choosing instead to buy societal quietude with borrowed money, albeit to different recipients than the last one; and ignoring the coming crisis where those recipients far outnumber the taxpayers’ willingness to pay — and the willingness of foreign investors to buy our government bonds.
Meanwhile, the wars are are sucking taxes out of our pockets, ensuring that banks do not lend, businesses do not hire, and Americans do not work. These continuations of the policies of Bush the Younger, unless they end in the withdrawal of all of our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, will make the current president the third in twenty years of incompetent presidents, with which the American people have chosen to bless themselves.
Finally, I would like to reflect on what the Muslim Attacks have done to our rights and freedoms. These rights and freedoms are more fragile now than ever. We are no longer our ancestors. We do not believe or assume what our ancestors took as givens. And, with those beliefs and assumptions, our rights and freedoms totter like a gutted building, ready at any moment to collapse.
The Judeo-Christian bedrock on which English common law and Reformation legal theory, on which in turn the Constitution was based — this is almost wholly crumpled away. It was a slow process, aided by the legal abuses of law professors and Supreme Court judges lubricated by monies from the newly ascendant business tycoons of the late 19th and early 20th centuries — all Europophiles in an age when Europe was about to undergo decades of self-destruction. By the 1920’s a prosperous and arrogant America began its own decline; by the late 1940’s — I use the SCOTUS Everson decision of 1947, defining the modern concept of church/state separation, as the transition point — it died a quiet death. It died, and a new United States, the one we live in now, was born.
The Constitution is still there. Our freedoms and rights are still there, in some fashion. But they are so fragile. They came under threat from the Law of 26 October 2001, which is slowing being undone. But the basic problem remains: The whining for security, especially among business types and other people in their affluent suburbs, and the politicians who cater to them. This lust for peace and security (
Peace and security, Paul of Tarsus centuries ago quoted those who would not see disaster coming upon them), or what Francis Schaeffer called personal peace and affluence, will be the corroder of those freedoms and rights that brought such peace and security about.
I have forgotten that I set Internet Explorer with a proxy server address. That setting was what caused Windows Update and Kaspersky to be so obstreperous, refusing to download updates they could not find. Removing the proxy address restored to both their ability to download updates.
I will repeat that I have installed Windows 7 on Madoka, my main computer. The installation was successful. The activation, at first, was not.
I had installed the same Windows 7 many times on Nabiki, my secondary computer. The activation server must have gotten tired of this. I have had to telephone the activation hotline and to follow the automated instructions. I learned to be very careful in using the service, partly from the seven strings I had to enunciate carefully (very carefully, because the telephonic automaton freaks out at any random noise, whether it is a sigh or my cat meowing in the background), partly from the eight sets of digits I had to type to activate my copy of Windows 7.
I had no real trouble installed my basic set of software: TextPad, WinZip, Winamp, Adobe Reader, Firefox and FileZilla. Then I had tried installing Bioshock, only to get the old
patch file is corrupt message. I had forgotten the port number I need to open in my firewall to the 2K activation servers (I found it later: It is 28900). But that did not work, either; nor did going into safe mode.
If the problem still happens the auto patch requires the TCP port 28900 to be open. If you use a router can you try adding it to the port forwarding.
All this appears to have crimpled the operating system’s style, because I cannot download upgrades for either Windows or Kaspersky, my new anti-virus/anti-malware software.
Have you noticed something? The news reports are so busy mentioning the weeping and gnashing of teeth from our nation’s leaders. Oh, oh, we should all get along! All this bookburning and rioting is tearing us apart!!
Yeah, as if we were ever together in the first place! Those fools were not making peace: They’re gassing about it!
Nobody mentions whether that redneck preacher, who intends to burn the Quran on the anniversary of the Muslim Attacks (this Saturday), is burning the Quran in English. If he is, there is nothing to be concerned, because the Quran in any other language than Arabic is not the Quran, merely an interpretation.
According to modern Islamic theology, the Qur’an is a revelation very specifically in Arabic, and so it should only be recited in the Arabic language. Translations into other languages are necessarily the work of humans and so, according to Muslims, no longer possess the uniquely sacred character of the Arabic original. Since these translations necessarily subtly change the meaning, they are often calledinterpretations.
Of course, all the ignorant apelings in the abode of Islam do not see it that way, so riots and attacks on Americans there are to be expected.
The Labor Day weekend is over.
The lawn has not been mowed for the past couple of weeks. The grass is brown and dormant because there has been almost no rain. There as been plenty of plantain, which is so conspicuous that it is easy to find and pull out.
Madre found yet another pair of shoes that Padre bought for himself, only to have left the box unopened somewhere for Madre to find on Sunday. I got me another pair of new comfortable new sneakers.
It is time to get a tombstone for Padre’s resting place. The problem here is that the tombstones available are so … vulgar. I have already gone over the tombstones I have found in the cemetery. Now I have seen, from the two brochures Madre has been reading, where the stupid things came from. Madre has shown the gravestone of Madre’s former boss to my sister the editor (who found that one of the items in the book lists on top was misspelt) and my sister the teacher.
On Saturday I was recruited by my sister the editor to help in removing the swivel base from Madre’s now-broken armchair and to install it on a new armchair she bought this morning. It was difficult doing: The chair base was cheap wood on which Vickie was proposing to fasten the metal swivel, and built such that simply attaching the swivel to it was not possible.
We had to fix the bracket, on which the swivel base rested, to the wood base of the new armchair. This involved cutting two pieces of ¾″ × 3″ to fit inside the new base, and fastening them with wood screws. Then we fastened the old swivel base on the new armchair’s base with wood screws on one end and bolts on the other. Then the swivel itself is fastened to its base with two surviving bolts (to its base) and two long wood screws (to the wood planks).
My sister insisted on using whether bolts and screws Padre had left behind. But Padre’s collection did not have the right parts for the job, and it was getting late in the afternoon. So I rushed to the local hardware store (which is only a couple of blocks from Madre’s) and bought the bolts and screws necessary to complete the job.
The newly swivel-based armchair was a couple of inches higher than it was, and it gives the feeling of sitting on a throne. Madre is pleased with the job we gave it.
The video card in my main box, Madoka, was giving up the spirit this weekend. It had reached the point where the boot text was corrupt (unless nVidia really did exist in 1916) and it worked only when Windows was in safe mode. So I went out on Labor Day morning to buy a new nVidia GeForce 9800 GT video card with a full gigabyte of video memory and PhysX® drivers for superior gaming performance. I got to admit it made playing Bioshock a lot smoother.
But all that was finished when I backed up all my data from the computer, and did a fresh install of Windows 7. Apart from all those experimental installs on Nabiki — which forced me to make a telephone call to get Windows activated — the installation worked fine.