Only When Necessary

Today is Memorial Day in the United States and while we gather for cookouts, afternoons at the pool and family reunions, lets not forget the real reason for the holiday. My Father was a veteran of the Vietnam War, serving a one year tour of duty as a helicopter pilot. He left for Southeast Asia when I was just a few months old. I of course don't remember any of that but no doubt it was very hard on my Mother. Dad never talked much about the war or what it was like. I learned at a young age not to push it and generally let him be.

It was only later in his life, as his death approached, that he was finally ready to share what he did and saw all those years ago. It was, in short, the most horrific experience of his life, a view that is shared by any veteran of any war. War is sometimes necessary, look no further than World War II, but all too often, it is not. Politicians who never served a day in their lives have never been shy about sending young boys and now girls off to war where if they are lucky enough to survive, they are a mental mess for the rest of their lives.

It does not matter how justified the war is, for all are horrible and the experiences of combat veterans are nightmares that most of us are lucky never to experience. Still, despite the horrors of war, these brave young men and women are ready to serve so that others won't have to. They are the best of the best and they deserve so much more than a simple thank you. What they deserve most is never to be sent into harms way unless absolutely necessary. The ongoing carnage in Iraq and Afghanistan were never necessary. Bring them home now.

I Can't Help It, It's Funny

The story and video of the two year old Indonesian boy who smokes 2 packs a day has taken the internets by storm. For the most part, it's caused a lot of outrage but come on, you have to admit that it is one of the funniest things you've ever seen. That being said, if I had a kid, I'd never let him or her smoke more than a pack a day...

I Once Was LOST But Now I'm Found

In the fall of 2004, ABC broke all of the rules when it broadcast the pilot episode of LOST. At the time, I had no idea that it would come to so consume me and countless others. As I said yesterday, television is full of shit (American Idol), so when a show as special as LOST comes around, it's not surprising that it would become something of a cult. It all ended last night and after a sleepless night, I'm still as impressed by what I saw as I was when it first ended.

LOST has always been a character driven show and in the end, it was all about the characters, especially Jack. Along the way, it was easy to get caught up in the mysteries of the island but when you got right down to it, the stories of these incredibly flawed and tormented individuals were what drove the show. I'm not here to recap last nights finale, I think it's pretty clear what happened, but I will say that I'm not sure it could have ended any better than it did. NO, what I'm here to do is share a few of my favorite things from this six year journey...

Favorite Episode: Man of Science, Man of Faith- This is the premiere episode from season two in which we are treated to one of the best surprises of the entire show, the fact that someone, Desmond, was living in that hatch and pushing those damn numbers every 108 minutes. Here is the opening sequence to Lost at it's best...

Runner Up: Through The Looking Glass- This season three finale is perhaps the darkest episode in the Lost timeline. Jack is finding his life spiraling out of control as he becomes addicted to drugs and alcohol. As his world, in an apparent flashback, falls completely apart, we find out in the end that what we are seeing is actually taking place after leaving the island, the first use of a flashforward. Here is a clip of the surprise ending...

Favorite Character(s): Desmond Hume and Juliet Burke. From the first time we met Desmond, I knew that he was important, I just didn't know why or how. Juliet, well, who couldn't love sweet Juliet, especially Juliet and Sawyer.

Desmond Hume

Juliet Burke

Favorite Island Mystery- The numbers of course. One of my favorite things about each episode was looking for references to the numbers 4 8 15 16 23 42. That the candidates to replace Jacob were each assigned one of these numbers was brilliant.

Here is a brief clip of Hurley riding through the Sydney airport...

Here is a clip of the season one finale when Hurley sees the numbers written on the hatch door...

Least Favorite Island Mystery- Why Walt was special. He wasn't.

The World According To Sawyer...

Best Quote- John Locke to Jack Shepard: "Why do you find it so hard to believe?"

Here is the clip...

Best Use of Music- The best was by far Make Your Own Kind of Music by Mama Cass. It played in the opening sequence of season two premiere seen above. The runner up would have to be the premiere episode of season three when Juliet puts in the Petula Clark CD Downtown. Here is the clip...

I could go on and on but I don't want to bore you. So, I'll just leave you with the wise words of one Desmond Hume..."see you in another life brotha"

This Is The End

It's been one hell of a ride, one of the most amazing journeys that I have ever been on and tonight, at 9 eastern, it all comes to an end. There is a lot of crap on television (American Idol comes to mind) but every now and then, something magical comes along that reminds us of what makes television so wonderful. LOST has captivated me and so many others for six years. I've watched every episode live, never relying on the DVR to record and watch later. I've followed the blogs, read the books and bought the merchandise and now that it's all ending, I'm filled with mixed emotions.

I'm ready for closure and yet I suspect I'll shed a tear or two tonight as things fade to black. The finale can't possibly live up to the hype, they never do, but no matter how it all ends, I'll be happy. So, as we bid farewell to the very best television series ever made, I say thank you to this wonderful collection of actors, writers, producers and creators. Thanks for the ride and know that we'll miss you so.

Obama is Fucking This Up Big Time

This fucking disaster in the Gulf of Mexico shows absolutely no signs of ending anytime soon. I'm still not sure that most people understand how horrible this is. Up to s much as 100,000 barrels of oil continue to gush into the Gulf each day and now it looks like the oil has been picked up by the Gulf Loop and is heading towards the open Ocean where it will wreck untold hell upon sealife and beaches everywhere, possibly as far away as Europe.

What is making it even worse is the piss poor response from President Obama. It's been clear for quite some time that this President doesn't have a backbone and doesn't know how to live. It's so damn disappointing as I, like so many others, had so much hope. He is more content to stay behind the scenes and not take a stand on anything. Letting BP handle this disaster is political suicide and is doing nothing but make things worse.

Grow a pair Obama and take over this whole operation before the Gulf of Mexico is gone forever. Seriously, grow a fucking pair or your term in office will be quite short.

Early and Often

It's election day here in Kentucky and there are two big races for those of us in Louisville. In the Democratic Primary for United States Senate, Attorney General Jack Conway is a real progressive and the best candidate for Senator. His opponent, Lt. Governor Dan Mongairdo is a homophobe and DINO. On the Republican side, well it's crazy versus even crazier.

Locally, the other big race is for Mayor of Louisville. The winner of the Democratic Primary is almost guaranteed to be elected come November so this one is not to be missed. I'll be voting for the most progressive candidate in the race, Tyler Allen. He's not going to win but the others haven't earned my vote.

Remember, vote early and often.

It's All So Depressing

Reading the news just gets worse and worse each day. What a fucking mess we find ourselves in. I got nothing else.

Thoughts On A Disaster

The unfolding disaster in the Gulf of Mexico is quickly turning into the worst man made natural disaster since Hiroshima and Nagasaki. I don't think that people really grasp the magnitude of what is happening and how horrible it all really is. If the current desperate effort to plug the wellhead doesn't work, the leak could continue till at least July and possibly later. If that worst case scenario happens, damage will be in the hundreds and hundres of billions of dollars with untold generational damage. The fish stocks of the Gulf would be totally wiped out, tourism would crash, the fragile wetlands that protect the mainland from hurricanes would be lost forever and the economy of the United States and possbily the world could plunge back into a deep recession.

I mention these worst case scenarios because they are sadly, the most likely. No one really has a freaking clue how to stop this thing and with each passing day, it appears that the leak is increasing in volume. So, as we take stock of what is happening, just who exactly is to blame for all of this? For that, just read on...

1. British Petroleum (BP) is ultimately the one responsible for cleaning up this mess but don't think for a minute that they will really pick up the tab. A 1990 law caps the liability at $75 million. I assure you, they won't pay a penny more. In addition to BP, Halliburton will also be on the hook as they are the ones that built the rig and drilled the well.

2. All of us are really responsible. Each time we fill up our tanks with cheap gasoline, we contribute to the death of this planet. Our addiction to oil is worse than that of a crack addicts need for his next fix. The fossil fuel industry is dirty and dangerous and until we move away from this form of energy, we will continue to see accidents like this one and the disaster in the West Virginia coal mine last month.

3. The fact that we are forced to drill for oil in the deepest depths of the ocean tells you all you really need to know about the state of oil production in the world. All of the easy stuff has been taken and to feed our addiction we are sticking the straw down into the hard to get sections. We are on the downward slope of oil production and as we move further and further away from Peak Oil, it will become increasingly more difficult to meet our needs. We have two choices here, we can "drill baby drill" and get absolutely nowhere or we can make a full fledged effort to find other energy sources.

4. My bet is that we will embrace the "drill baby drill" mantra. Sadly, President Obama has his head up his ass and is blowing a prime opportunity to have the real kind of change that he campaigned on. His boneheaded decision to open up offshore areas to drilling is coming back to bite him in the ass. This might be a once in a lifetime opportunity to affect real change but as Obama has shown so many times, he won't go for it.

Here are a few pictures to help bring home the disaster that is happening...