Friday, July 29, 2005

On being Judge-mental

I'm extremely supportive of John Roberts being considered for a seat on the Supreme Court. Judge Roberts has led a distinguished legal career, and based on what I've read, is in agreement with the vast majority of Americans.

That some would-be opponents are having a tough time finding skeletons in his closet is amusing, and probably the only reason I keep up with the issue at all. Even some conservatives are second guessing him, based on a statement he made while getting confirmed to the DC Appeals Court in 2003:

"Roe v. Wade is the settled law of the land ...it's a little more than settled. It was reaffirmed in the face of a challenge ...there's nothing in my personal views that would prevent me from fully and faithfully applying that precedent."

Again, I'm no legal scholar, but anyone seeking confirmation to a U.S. appeals court, paricularly the one considered a stepping stone to the SCOTUS, must realize that appellate courts are not in the business of overturning Supreme Court decisions.

He knew not to rock the boat then, which is a good thing, because the next and final stop is Capitol Hill.

Why I (should) blog

I've been procrastinating. I've been checking this site for the last week or so, hoping to miraculously see a new post that I intended to, but hadn't, written on the big topics that have dominated the mil-blog scene recently.

While I don't intend to ever "compete" with my favorite bloggers, being in a different league -- and not having the audience or instant feedback -- somehow contradicts the sense of community that has motivated me to write. It can get lonely out here. And every day that passed, it became more of an effort to clean the cobwebs around here and re-energize this online writing experiment.

Fortunately, I don't blog for a grade, financial benefit or even for my beloved Air Force. I blog because I can, and I blog because so many of my brothers and sisters in arms can not.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Mastering the Mini (and Spousal Relations!)

I finally buckled to temptation, and the wife seems to not mind one bit.

I bought the Household Commander an iPod for her birthday.

As an introduction, this is a huge step for a family who has hitherto prided itself in being responsible consumers and avoiding the hype of consumerism. Neither of us gets excited about electronic gadgets -- I don't even own a watch -- but I must confess that this little doohickey is a lot of fun.

What started out as an impulse buy has turned out to be fairly educational too. From the moment you open the package, it's clear that this product will leave an indelible mark on humankind ...and we're going to be a part of that! Throw in some logo stickers, and it's flawless marketing.

It's that same "brand emotion" that causes new iPodders to waste money on accessories. For instance, we can assume that most folks would get tired of the earbugs and one day want to play songs on bigger speakers. The company's answer: Its very own "Stereo Connection Kit" for a mere $80.

The Funky Crew, ever the informed consumers, instead bought a cable that has a 1/8" stereo adapter on one end and a Y-adapter on the other for a fraction of that price. And tho not as pretty, it works just fine. The same research can be applied to the armband and better headphones.

Accessory marketing aside, it's been a blast. Evident by the way she beebops around the house, my wife is enjoying the new gizmo too.

And we all know that when CINCHOUSE is happy, everyone is happy.

Thanks Apple.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Mil-blogger returns to 'Leatherneck' roots

Fellow mil-blogger, Jarhead, from Red State Rant has made the monumental decision to join the Marine Corps, after a 10-year hiatus from his initial stint in "Uncle Sam's Big Green Gun Club."

His post brilliantly captures what many proud servicemembers feel about the calling of military service. Further, Jarhead and his family epitomize the selflessness and patriotism that the nation needs right now (read here and here).

Wrote Jarhead:
Serving my country is not a 4-year contract. It is a life-long commitment. Nor is it a “due” to be paid like some cheap membership fee. It is a deeply personal obligation. And it is certainly not “time” that has to be “done” like some felony prison sentence. It is nothing short of an honor that I hold in the highest regard, an honor that I must prove worthy of, an honor that must be earned every single day.

We offer you our best wishes, and more importantly, you have our respect.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Slow day in the MSM?

With bombing details slowly emerging out of London, the mainstream media grabs what it can to fill the international page void. Fortunate for them, I'm open to play ball.

Apparently, Nike's decided to give ol' Kobe Bryant another chance after a two-year timeout. I'm no fan of basketball, but I followed this case closely from a marketing/sponsorship perspective -- I suspect it'll become a staple "case study" in advanced public relations courses.

And the other tidbit is an alleged, classified UK Defense Ministry blueprint drafted by the UK & US to dramatically reduce the number of troops in Iraq by April 2006. Of course, this document was leaked, so there's no spokesperson -- or credibility -- attached to the story.

Saturdays are traditionally slow for the MSM, and I can appreciate the timing of the Nike announcement (invite less "hoop-la" when America's focus is on baseball). But I look forward to seeing if/how the latter story plays out: The two largest members of the coalition should not re-deploy at the same time in Iraq.

And if it's merely a bureaucrat's ploy to pressure the Iraqis to assume more responsibility for themselves, it sure doesn't do much to strengthen diplomatic relations with (what could be) the showcase government in that region.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Attack on London, freedom

If anything, today’s bombings in London are proof that the war on terror is far from over. Fellow milblogger BlackFive has a compelling perspective on the tragic event.