Monday, May 29, 2006

A Mile And A Half In His Shoes

I found this article after poking around in some Yahoo! groups to which I subscribe. As the officer that used to brief these cases to Academy leadership, I know that the Review Board has shown more than its share of leniency-- to the detriment of consistency.

I recall Mr. Shannon, but he had not risen to a level of great concern when I was in this position. Despite his size and reputed strength, any football coach will tell you that a 10:30 1.5-mile time should be easily attainable. I know from experience that any student in this position is screened by a panel of senior physicians to eliminate the possibility of any physical ailment. Barring a physical condition, there should be no reason why a 23 year old man cannot meet this relatively low standard. But the physical fitness standard is not the issue here.

I'm sorry that he is shouldered with this monstrous debt at such a young age. Truly, I am. However, the Naval Academy espouses itself to be "the cradle of leadership." And without standards, there will never be growth and development of, supposedly, the nation's finest.

Mr. Shannon has invoked the name of his Congressman for assistance. Sen. Mikulski, bless your heart, it is your astute body that set the compliance to these standards. And these standards, I argue, are broken not only by the midshipmen, but more egregiously, by the administrators themselves. My chief complaint during my tour at USNA was the murk of unpredictability and opacity that surrounded these separation hearings. In my experience, an identical set of facts could yield any permutation of administrative discipline, ranging from a verbal warning to discharge with debt recapture. Frighteningly, I was rarely able to correctly predict the outcome of a student's case.

I'm not givng Mr. Shannon a pass. I'm not giving the Academy leadership a pass either. When exceptions are more common than the rule, the rule making body needs to reevaluate their effectiveness.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Proeliator Senator

Translation: Warrior Senator

What isn't to like about Senate hopeful, James Webb? He's a Marine attorney/author from Nebraska that graduated from the Naval Academy and is now running on the Democratic ticket in Virginia. Of course his Republican opposition is already mounting a campaign to discredit his military record, which includes the receipt of the Navy Cross. Tasteful. Having read, listened to, and met this man, I can attest that he is the real deal. Jim, do you want to move to Arizona?

Your Sunday Cartoon©

One of the best strips ever. Too bad G. Larson doesn't want them published electronically. If I get one of these letters, at least I know someone is reading. Fair use, fair use!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Crack The Code:

thi(s) book = s(u)ck / e(d)

I am officially declaring myself the second-to-last person on the planet to read The Da Vinci Code. Mom, you can borrow it now. I am also declaring myself the first open minded liberal to say that it was a big disappointment. I'm not angry about the theme or fictional insinuations. I'm angry that I wasted a few hours of my life on this sixth grade reading assignment.

I don't read much fiction...and I broke down to swallow this bland morsel? A contrived, formulaic offering, served at room temperature over a bed of transparent characters, smothered in predictability and snoozy dialogue. Bon appétit, Mona Lisa.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Give Them The Bird

Hey! These guys ripped off the City of Phoenix logo! I haven't figured out exactly what they do down in the Dominican Republic. The Google translate function tells me they do something with aircraft. No other line of airplanes makes so many things, in so many places and for as much people. Ahh, muy clearer.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Happy Mother's Day!

For my wife, a mother-to-be, and my mom, the mother of me. Today, and everyday, we honor you.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

No Shoes. No Shirt. No Kidding.

I've done a little rehab on ye olde blog.

Writing a blog should be fun. Fun is voicing opinion. I need more fun.

You might notice that there is less advertising. I've removed our business logos so that there aren't mass demonstrations outside our respective places of employment. Why does georgiedesigns get a pass? Well, it might be difficult to protest and loot an eBay account. As for RESCUE, maybe would-be rioters would stop by to adopt a cat.

Why worry about rioters? This burrito could use some opinion-flavored salsa. Hang on people. It's going to be a wild and liberally subversive ride.

What you can expect:
More bird flu. Less mad cow.
More great taste. Less gassy bloating.
More Raleigh. Less Durham.
More Nelson. Way, way, less Milhouse.

Fuel up the SUV. Grab your Bible, your gun, and your Bush/Cheney sticker. We're going to crash a gay wedding. But not before we get some Mexicans to clean up the backyard.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Nuggets of Gold From Madison Ave.

Sure, we have TiVo, but every once in a great while, a commercial sneaks through. Here are the best out there right now. Enjoy.

1. A worm doing the worm. Genius.
2. Safe happens. The idiot that thinks these commercials are counterproductive should be canned. Ironic that he says the spots are ineffective as he is being interviewed about the commercial campaign. Honorable mention for unpimp the auto.
3. Push it, Nextel. Try to get this song out of your head.
4. Nothing like a chimp smoking a cigar.
5. Hank. Again with the worm. This time to Gary Glitter's "Rock and Roll Part II."