Location: Columbus, Ohio, United States

Monday, July 31, 2006

Ned Lamont

I saw an interview with Connectict Senatorial Hopeful Ned Lamont. He's going head to head with Joe Liberman because he thinks that Lieberman is enabling President Bush, and he saw a chance to paint Lieberman as the cuddle buddy of the right pretty clearly when Bush gave Lieberman the awkard Mafia kiss at the state of the union.
Personally I kind of like Joe Lieberman because he's devout and moderate. I disagree with his stance on the war, but I've said the same thing about the war for four years and disagreed with him for all four. Anyway, I'm more interested in Ned Lamont. The other thing is he wants to be President in eight years.
He made a comment today that was silly. He was talking about being an entrepeneur and said, "I built a company by myself from nothing."
Blow me.
Apparently in Ned Lamont's world nothing includes $90 million plus inheritance from his former-JP-Morgan-headman grandfather.
I think this bugs me on a personal level because I really did have nothing when we started in business, but I also don't like how cravenly disingenuous it is to claim that he bootstrapped it.
The other annoying thing is that we live in the Wiki world, where quotes like that can become chronicled digitally within seconds, becoming something kind of like fact, and then become a process story.
What an idiot.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

That's Great it Starts with an Earthquake...

Kofi Annan today referred to the killing of 4 UN Monitors as "an apparently deliberate attack."
I'm not inclined to agree with that, not because I think Israel looks great in a white hat, but because from a realpolitik perspective I don't see any reason that Israel would benefit from capping some UN Inspectors.
What scares the crap out of me isn't so much the new war, or even the fact that the US has been powerless to do anything, it's that Hizballah is not truly an autonomous organization that woke up one morning and got pissed. They are a political tool of Iran. When Iran's goal was to advocate what it saw as the Islamic agenda this was bad. Now that Iran's goal is apparently to establish regional hegemony and then leverage it to make clash of civilizations more than a metaphor Hizbollah's actions are awful scary.
What does Iran seek to gain from their incursion?
The first and most obvious is that they get to look like heroes to the disaffected Arab youth.
Perhaps they're picking a fight by proxy like we did with Russia in the Cold War, and perhaps Israel will go after the puppeteer and go head to head with Iran. That's scary but I don't think it's too likely because that would go nuke and that's unnattractive.
I don't think this is all that they have in mind, and what I anticipate is a bit scarier.
I think that in a couple of weeks we'll hear about the Ahmadijenad Plan, a way to bring a cease fire, They don't recognize Israel, so they won't, but they'll say some crap about halting the Zionist aggression and giving Hizbollah a "non-humiliating" resolution. I wouldn't be surprised if they hit the UN Folks to hamstring the UN and create a need for a peace maker. This sucks. Either Israel agrees and Iran gets a quasi diplomatic win bolstering themselves as the regional hegemon OR Israel refuses and people throw more rocks on the Arab street and recognize Iran as a defacto leader. In either case, with the weakness of Arab states to pull together legitimate governments, the end of the day probably ends up with Iran as the regaional hegemon.
I will write more on this later.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Golf With A Friend

Recently, in lots of different ways, I'm becoming convicted that I was made to do life in Community.
I went to a Catholic college, and the campus ministers talked about community all the time, and I kind of brushed it off as mere words. I was wrong, and that wrongness hurt me and some other people I don't even know about.
When I'm not living in real community with my wife, and with good friends who are allowed to punch me in the balls if I'm living wrong, I begin to migrate into something much less than what I was made for.
For some people (most people) this is a "duh" but for me this is huge.
Mine has been a faith (and as a reflection) often a life that was mostly about me doing something, acting, persevering, enduring. This doesn't mean that I haven't had amazing friends, mentors, and strangers helping me with stuff, or people on the outside who had agency to hurt me. I have, and often miss it because I'm hugely egocentric, but that's not what I'm trying to write about. What I mean is that in the ministry, work, and life I've had to this point I've been either the "actor" or the "direct object acted upon." We are "challenged" by foes, we "are fed" by mentors and "pour into" younger people. This is all transactional. I live transactional. I am transactional. God wants more.
We were created to be interactional. It's a different paradigm. It's scarier and better.