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May 16, 2007

You Can't Go Wrong with G4

As I was heating my mattar paneer in the lunch room, a couple of guys that were doing construction work on our floor went up to the vending machine. One of the guys put some money in it. After staring at it for a while, the other guy said, "You can't go wrong with G4."

After they left, I went up to the vending machine to find out what G4 was. It was a roll of Lifesavers.

Posted at 01:05 PM | Comments (2)

Don't Make Me Come Back There

Couldn't we pull the troops out of Iraq, see how it goes, and then go back if needed? Sure there's a cost of moving the troops around, but there's also a cost associated with leaving them there. What's the ratio? Maybe it's something like bringing the troops home and then redeploying them later costs as much as leaving them there for a year. Right now the war seems kind of open-ended -- it could go on for another 4,5, or even 10 years as far as I know.

To lessen the costs of moving the troops around, maybe we could leave all the equipment there. Let the Iragis use it for a while, for themselves. When things calm down, we bring the equipment back. Or they can rent to own.

Using this method, when we leave we should have explicit reasons laid out for going back. An example might be an exact amount of casualties. Let's say that after we leave, violence escalates. Maybe the rule would be something like: When the average amount of daily casualties increases by 100% after the date of withdrawal, we go back. There could be several different reasons. The point is that they should be explicit. They should be the things that people are worried about happening if the troops all left today.

One criticism I've heard about withdrawing from Iraq is that the bad guys will think that they've won. They'll think that they scared America away. So what? Let them think that if they want. Why can't we just say: "Look, this has been going on for a long time and no one is really getting anywhere. We're tired of all of the killing, and we want to bring our people home. If that's 'winning' for you, fine. You win. Oh, but we'll come back if things get out of hand. So if you want to live your lives in peace like the rest of us, you'd be smart to just let everyone get back to their daily lives. Thanks."

Posted at 09:46 AM | Comments (4)

May 08, 2007

I'm Not That Hungry

We often joke that the cats bring rats, birds, moles(!), and bugs into the house because they're trying to feed me. They see that I never eat meat, so maybe they figure that I'm just not good at catching anything.

The other evening Kaylee came in the cat door with a big crane fly in her mouth, and while everyone watched, she walked right over to me and laid it at my feet.

Posted at 09:55 AM | Comments (2)