September 23rd, 2005


Another case of "What was I thinking?"

So this high school teacher in Iowa -- -- runs out with a sword to scare away the people TP'ing his house. He whacks a kid on the hand for a minor injury. He's arrested, put on paid leave by the school, big stink. What to think?

Let's be clear: TP'ing a house is trespassing and (minor) vandalism. I don't condone it.

BUT . . . a sword, even a fencing foil, is a weapon. Responsible people don't brandish weapons they don't mean to use. If you're not prepared to shoot, you don't draw your gun. If you're not prepared to stab or slash, you don't draw a knife. There is no such thing as "scaring" people with a weapon.

I'm not sure this guy ought to be fired -- which would seem a pretty stiff penalty. But he certainly needs to be told where the lines are. Defending your house from TP'ing does not justify assault with a weapon (even your fists). Now, turning the sprinklers on or using a garden hose, I'm okay with.
speed limit

Political foo

I think I just saw the first plausible presidential contender for '08. I would never have thought Haley Barbour (Gov. of Mississippi) could make it on the national scene, but I saw him speak at a conference on rebuilding the Gulf coast, and I thought, WOW.

Not just for his handling of Katrina -- though he shows up quite a contrast to Gov. Twit of Louisiana. But he was talking about the tort reform they passed in MS, and the fact that in order to eliminate their budget deficit, they actually reduced spending -- and nobody suffered. He was articulate, caring, on top of his data; it was a masterful performance.

Barbour's no stranger to national politics, either. He was once Chairman of the Republican National Committee. If I were a betting man, I'd say he's almost guaranteed one of the spots on the ticket in '08.
by himself

Latest disorder

Currently, I am suffering from Spastic Cat Syndrome.

Time to pet-proof the downstairs -- gotta put away everything that I don't want played with, jumped on, burrowed through . . .