November 5th, 2004

Summer Hat

...penny for the guy

Please to remember the fifth of November,
Gunpowder treason and plot.
I see no reason why gunpowder treason
Should ever be forgot.

It seems apt, things aren't going my way today.

In other Anglophile news, three soldiers from the Black Watch were killed by a suicided bomber in Iraq. Its rather interesting reading news from the BBC website, and then listening to news radio in this country. In some of the BBC stories folks in the UK were convinced that moving the Black Watch into US controlled territory in Iraq last week was some nefarious political scheme on the part of the UK government to help Bush out before the election. Sure, it sounds like a good accusation to make, but it doesn't make any sense given that 99.99% of people in the US wouldn't give a damn even if they knew. The troup move wasn't exactly headline news in the US, even on the more reputable new services. Besides, its a 900 person regiment and the US has lost more soldier than that already in the war. I'm sure even most of my friends know very little about the regiment and its nearly 300 year history, so the chances of the average American voter caring at all are just about nil.

A lot reporting bothers me more and more these days. Mostly its just that the reporters seem so darn stupid. They'll happily report about how so-and-so said such-and-such is a politcal move to affect something, without any critical look at whether or not this is actually plausable. For an example from this country there's the way media in this country quotes people talking about the "back door draft" about how reservists keep getting called up to go to Iraq. Now I think that W was rushing things at the very least when he went to Iraq, but using the reserves is not a "back door draft". If you're in the reserves you can get called up and sent into a war zone, that's part of the deal, even if the guy giving the order is an idiot. The media is happy, however, to put these talking heads on the air or in print without challenging anything that comes out of their mouths. Its like if I put code in production without unit testing it first, or worse,
put someone else's code in production without testing it.