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Journal: Some people...

Journal by AceM2

See where a good discussion about a possible military technology turns into a debate about what a "bad guy" is.

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1032117&cid=25788173

I don't know if I should laugh or what.

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Journal: Peace

Journal by AceM2

Let's all join hands now and live in peace because a democrat is in office.

When will the masses realize all politicians are the same?

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Journal: What the...

Journal by AceM2

Hey...Is it just me, or are all these fringe liberals getting really crazy lately?

I generally tend to keep my political beliefs quiet and tucked away until someone seeks them out (with a few exceptions), but lately I almost feel I am being attacked left and right by these wacky liberals. Then, when it isn't the crazies – it's the people who thing that life is so horrible in America and how bad things are because of “W” etc. People seem to be losing their minds just because of the upcoming election. Of course, I honestly don't believe it's the election itself. I believe a lot of the democrats in congress and Mr. Obama are intentionally planting these beliefs in the weaker minded individuals out there.

As far as the crazy libs - I'm not talking about people who just vote democrat and have liberal leanings, I'm talking about crazy fringe leftists flipping me off because I'm in the military fighting Bush's war or whatever comment they decide to drop on me. Seriously, this happened the other night and is by no means an an isolated instance. One of the soldiers in my team was basically verbally assaulted during a traffic jam outside post recently, and I have heard of an increasing number of such outbursts. Now, I'm sure people will just say there are always anti-war anti-military crazies out there and I'm used to seeing the protesters, but this is the first time I've been personally confronted by them. Then when it isn't anti-military sentiment, it's anti-gun or blame America first or something of that nature.

Anyway, the perceived state of our economy and how people view their conditions is also really getting on my nerves. It is as if everyone just realized how horrible conditions are after Obama started telling them about it. I find myself continually arguing with people over the economy and how "horrible" life is right now. People have no idea how good we have it! Everywhere I go I see people driving around nice vehicles with DVD players and all that high tech gadgetry going on, houses with big screen plasma TVs glowing in the window, everyone with a cellphone and/or laptop computer, and I could go on. What was that on the Obama commercial last night? The family didn't have snacks or something similarly ridiculous. Hey, guess what? The majority of the world lives off of rice, doesn't have clean drinking water, maybe has a radio or similar if they have access to electricity, and let's not even get into the lack of the freedoms we enjoy in America thanks to our relative prosperity. That's just a small list at that. I'm sorry a lot of people have gotten themselves in to a hole with their ARM loans or lost money in the stock market. Guess what? You're lucky. You're lucky you even had the chance to invest some money. You're lucky you live in a country where you can buy a $200,000+ house on credit. It really saddens me to see this extreme misplaced anger coming out in my neighbors, friends, family, and fellow Americans. It just shows me that as a country we've become extremely spoiled and I fear we're about to make some horrible political choices because of this emotional tantrum.

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Journal: Another example of the political insanity in Iraq

Journal by AceM2

So I was just checking my email and saw this news story: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080518/ap_on_re_mi_ea/iraq

This kid is an idiot for doing what he did, but to me this is just insanity. On our side we accidentally kill civilians by the dozens, kick in their doors and search their houses at all hours of the day/night, and not to mention our presence attracting outside terrorists into the country. This is not even to speak of the horrible things they would do if you gave them a star of david, a christian bible, or something similar.

Now I could sit here and talk about the terrible things I've seen both sides do, but that's not my point. My point is of all the crazy things going on, you're going to ruin someone's career (and as a result, their life for the next couple years) over the shooting of a book on a range. Wow. There are so many more worse things going on in a WAR than disrespecting a religious text (which in my experience are often found in trash or abandoned in the streets).

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Journal: An update on myself and future postings 1

Journal by AceM2

Since I've been in Iraq for the past 13 months, I haven't been given a lot of time to get online and post a JE to Slashdot. Things here seem a lot different from when I used to post back in college so I doubt anyone reads my journal, but oh well. A lot of people don't understand that my particular job in the Army (Infantry) means I'm rarely on the FOB (until the past couple weeks anyway) and for the past year I've probably had a total of 30 minutes a week to spend online. During that 30 minutes you can bet Slashdot was the last thing on my mind.
          Anyhow, I've seen more things than you could possibly imagine. Every horrible thing that you've heard about I've seen. I still support certain aspects of this war, but I've changed my opinion on various other aspects now that I've actually been here. I plan on posting on a lot of what I've seen - though some of it will be phrased hypothetically due to the... sensitive nature.
          We spent 4 months in Baghdad, and the rest all over the Diyala river valley. I have not been down south, but I've been to all the hot spots up here. For the first 3 months of my deployment I lived in an abandoned Church in Baghdad, and then the rest I've lived with Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police. About a month ago we moved onto a FOB. What I'm saying is, I've actually spent a lot of time with the people of this country - talked to them, eaten with them, and slept by them. Trust me, life here on the ground is so much different than anything on TV.
          Anyhow, I'll probably post soon. All is well right now. I'll be home in the somewhat-near-future.

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Journal: Slashdot seems so boring now... 7

Journal by AceM2

I still enjoy getting some tech news (albeit often outdated by traditional media these days), but I miss all the controversial issues I used to get involved in. It seems like 75% of the people I used to enjoy reading (JEs etc) no longer comment. Perhaps there are better sites out there now for a good argument... Perhaps Slashdot has just finally tipped itself over in one direction and no one cares to argue anymore? Did all the 'fun' people leave? I thought there would be more going on, what with the election and all. Maybe I'm just messed up because I enjoy a good argument? Hmm..

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Journal: Leaving for Iraq 1

Journal by AceM2

If no one hears from me for a while and is wondering why - I'm going to Iraq the day after tomorrow. We got a whole 7 days of leave followed by a lot of sitting around at work doing nothing while we should be spending time with our families. Anyhow! I'll be here tomorrow (perhaps slightly intoxicated), but after that... I'll be back online when I can, and back in the US in 12-18 months.

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Journal: More ranting

Journal by AceM2

Even I will admit - the quality of my journal posts has increasingly degraded over the past few months. However I am going to take it a step further, and throw in a random rant-of-the-day.

I have been a big Google.com person since they started up. At the time I just thought it was the cool new thing, but I have learned to love that search engine and use it as heavily as everyone else. The thing is though, I cannot stand this dumb links popping up whenever I search for *anything*. What pages? The ones containing nothing other than links to other searches and what not. I mean, what is the point of making a website which links to other sites? Ad revenue? It is just getting on my nerves right now because I have important things to look up, and having 50 of these pop up makes it difficult.

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Journal: Lack of transportation

Journal by AceM2

My car was stolen - just a few weeks before Christmas - when I had to go into work early on Sunday morning - right as I was finally getting my bills straightened out after getting married. Feel bad for me ;p

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Journal: Grrr 1

Journal by AceM2

Blah! I wrote an entry this morning about military equipment, but it never posted. Too bad I didn't realize it earlier when I could have gone back and resubmitted... Oh well.

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Journal: I've missed slashdot (sortof)

Journal by AceM2

Well, I finally have DSL in my room and all that good stuff - even though I may have to move down the hall soon. So, I'll be able to read and post again for a while and I'm pretty happy about that. While I was still in college I spent all my free time there (lunch break, etc) on Slashdot, so I've missed getting to read and post. Once I catch up on everything going on in the real world again, maybe I'll start posting again...

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Journal: Ft Lewis 3

Journal by AceM2

Ooh... I don't have time for a long post, but I just got my orders in yesterday. Tomorrow I leave for Ft Lewis, WA. So... Who lives in the area? I don't really want to go out there, but I'll try and make the best of it.

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Journal: Video Cards

Journal by AceM2

I just got back from the mall a little while ago and I'm trying to figure out what video card to buy. I'll probably order online to get a decent price, but there are so many different cards out right now. I've been away for 2 months and then when I walk into the store there are about 10 different "New" video cards. Each box has comparisons to cards that make it look favorable, but they tend to not compare themselves to anything else on the shelf. It's always compared to the past 3 releases and "lite" editions, so I don't have any real guide. Anyone out there who keeps track of hardware want to guide me in the right direction? I'm not looking to spend over $250, so I don't want the latest and greatest. I just don't want to accidentally buy some piece of garbage when I could have gotten a good card for the same price. Right now I'm looking at some hardware review sites, but it's like... This card rules! But wait... This one rules too! How am I supposed to figure out which is better? :P

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Journal: Merry Christmas 2

Journal by AceM2

      I'm back home from my ITB-home today. Everyone in training gets around two weeks off for Christmas if they want to take leave, and there was no one I was going to sit around there picking up leaves and cleaning latrines at Ft Benning when I could be at home with my family. Hopefully I'll have a good vacation without getting lazy, but I know I'm going to end up blowing my last few paychecks on presents and such since I've missed everyone so much.
      My basic training experience has been interesting, but pretty fun overall. Some things are really difficult to put into words though. People ask me whether it is hard or easy, but it's neither. Overall I've had fun, but there are times when it can be very difficult. Anyone can pass basic if they want to, it's just difficult sometimes because it's so very different from civilian life. It also depends on what basic training you're going to. From what I hear, our Infantry basic training is much more difficult than what the other people go through. My company is right beside one that's training people with a technology-oriented MOS, and they don't get nearly the same PT or yelling that we do. Their Drill Sergeants don't swear, touch them, or drop them all that often. You haven't had fun until you've had a DS throw you to the ground by your chin strap, call you every name in the book (plus 100 things you've never heard of), and make you do pushups and flutterkicks for half an hour. Okay, that hasn't actually happened to me, but if you're a screw up...
      Another thing is we see a lot of NG and Reservists around here who are non-Infantry. Now I have lot of respect for the combat veterans around here no matter what branch of service they are, but the ones I deal with out there have been complete idiots. We knew more in week four than some of these people going to Iraq who are just in it for the paycheck. I wish them all luck and a safe return, but you would be amazed at how poorly these people were acting in the field. On our qualification day some Reservists were shooting their M4s and the women could not even pull themselves out of the foxhole.
      Anyway, overall it's been fun and I still have plenty of AIT left to go. I'll probably post some more things later regarding stories I've been told. I've met a lot of Infantry combat veterans and I've heard some disturbing things about the war in Iraq, it's a lot worse than I thought. I can't believe the way our enemy wages war. I'm even more hardened than ever about believing we need to wipe them off the face of the earth.

I use technology in order to hate it more properly. -- Nam June Paik

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