Friday, August 08, 2008

Gitmo Ain't No Nuremberg

Bin Laden's driver gets a slap on the wrist
Apparently, in the 21st century, "I vas only follovink orders" is a viable defense. That's the only way to explain the wimpy sentence of 5 1/2 years handed down to confessed Al-Qaida member Salim Hamdan, Osama Bin Laden's personal chauffeur, yesterday. Check out this quote from the MSNBC article linked at the top of this post:

Referring to the decks of cards the U.S. military has distributed with images of most-wanted terrorists, Davis said: "Hamdan would be the two of clubs."
But even the two of clubs is in the deck--and there's only 52 cards! That means one of the top 52 terrorists on our list is eligible to be released in as little as five months. Five. Months. For someone who was there and working with the plotters of one of the worst mass murders ever committed. The verdict and sentence of the first Guantanamo trial was a chance to send a message to the world that terrorism will be punished harshly, if not swiftly. Instead, the message we've sent is that we're going soft, right as we head for a period of transition at the highest levels of our government. I just hope this message isn't paid for, in the end, with American lives.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Favre and Away

Wouldn't it be nice to remember Brett Favre like this?

Or like this?

Or maybe holding the Lombardi Trophy after Super Bowl XXXI?

Instead, all but the most die-hard Packer and Favre fans have this enduring image:

Yep, ol' number 4, in front of a crowd of reporters, ambiguating like a John Kerry campaign speech. I don't begrudge the guy wanting to come back for one more year, but look at the position he put his team in. He announced his retirement; the Packers have to plan for the coming season and beyond. Handing over the starting QB reins for one more year may sound good sentimentally, but it would have been a piss-poor business decision. Trading him to a division rival or releasing him (and freeing him to sign with the same rivals) when he clearly had value in a trade would have been just as bad. Green Bay did the only sensible thing they could have done when they shipped him to the Jets late last night: allow their "QB of the Future" to begin his new life as a starter, get Favre out of not just the division, but the conference, and get some value to improve their team for '09 and beyond. Now that the deal is done, hopefully the national sports media can quit indulging Brett Favre's seemingly unquenchable desire for the spotlight and get their focus back on training camps, preseason games (did anyone even know that the Hall of Fame game was last Sunday?), and the upcoming season. And Brett Favre better hope that he still has enough left in the tank to live up to all the hype that's been surrounding him. It's unlikely a bad season will keep him out of Canton, but at the very least, it'll get the voters thinking, "At least Montana knew when to hang it up."