Really Important Shit

I spent the weekend down in Yorktown, not far from my old high school stompin’ grounds. Erin’s parents live down there, but the good ol’ Exxon where I earned my gas/lunch money is boarded up and ready for the bulldozer, and the good ol’ Homer J. Ferguson HS has been razed to make room for CNU‘s performing arts school or some other unnecessary shit [fuckers] and glamorous new parking deck (#21 on your campus map), yay! [fuckers]

Take note: It is a bad idea to have too many beers and decide to play hockey in the garage with your gf’s friend’s husband and gf’s brother when you haven’t taken or blocked a shot in over six years. Especially if you’re way out of shape, as I most certainly am. The ultimate pain you’ll have to endure for the following two to three days is not worth the fleeting moments of joy you experience making barefoot kicksaves on a wiffle ball.

Then again, at my age, it’s a good hurt. It’s not a “where the fuck does pain come from?” kinda’ hurt… it’s a “I know exactly where this hurtingness comes from, and I need to perform those actions more often” kinda’ hurt. Erin and I discussed this concept tonight (amid my griping about how sore I am), and both agreed that I’m an out-of-shape little pussyboy.

So, on Friday morning–knowing that I had an estimated six hours of roundtrip drive time–I did what any True American Patriot(TM) would do: I downloaded five hours of 9/11 Commission testimony to listen to in traffic on the ‘Pod.

Aside: Audible (and, by default, iTMS) provide soundfile downloads free of charge. Check ’em out.

Although I’d previously read highlights of it, I pulled down the Commission’s Staff Statement summary of the terrorists’ 9/11 plot. Then, I found former “terrorism czar” Richard Clarke’s released testimony and snagged that one, as well. Then, expecting the worst, yet yearning for something approaching “fair and balanced”, I gave purchase to the Machine (Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Gen. Myers).

Here’s my take:

We, as Americans, need more people like Richard Clarke involved in the decisions made by our government surrounding our safety. During Clarke’s testimony, I heard at least four instances of applause from the Commission and/or observers… either in response to something he said, or in response to something a member of the Commission said in his praise. I heard only one round of applause during the Rumsfeld piece. That was when a member of the Commission called him out.

Now, of course, I went into this whole exercise with my own preconceived notions, but at least gave a guy the chance to come clean, take responsibility for inadequacies… whatever. What it boiled down to, however, was that Clarke apologized to the American People (of which I’m one) for the intelligence failures that may or may not have led to the 9/11 attacks. He also attacked the current Administration’s beauracracy and complacency. Then again, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz claim that they only had less-then-eight months to get Administration people in place, because of the lengthy Senate approval process.

I call bullshit.

The way I see it, right or wrong (who the fuck will ever know?), is that… after the “Florida Surprise”, the (w) et al didn’t have requisite time to fill the necessary posts to do anything with “actionable intelligence” because were too busy rewarding their old-money buddies, and consumed with the aforementioned lengthy Senate-approval process.

“Dude, you’re SO getting hooked up! Where do you wanna’ be?”
“What, a hijacked plane hit the World Trade Center?”
“Fuck! What was that thing that Clarke said when we first came to town? Oh, shit. How can we spin this?”