Fair-ish and Balanced-ish
Thursday, April 10, 2003
This review of the movie "Ned Kelly" is hard to write, as I quite enjoyed the movie, but I'm about to bag it out.
Ned Kelly is one of those movies that I would love to like. But it's just too hard to. The scenery is great, the acting pretty good, and the plot fast moving. But it's got a number of flaws that really let it down. Watching it, you would assume that Ned was about the most hard done by person in history, now I'm no historian, but I'm pretty sure that it wasn't so one sided (perhaps either Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf or Keith Windschuttle were script writers). The film's historical accuracy can be most generously described as imaginative (check out the last fire-fight, and the number of cops that the gang take down). And there were those odd little flaws that just plain annoy me (people trudging through muddy roads when the side of the road is far drier, everything that Naomi Watts character does, that sort of thing).
However, all of this aside, if you pretend that there was no such person as Ned Kelly in real life, it's quite a good movie.
The Follow Up
Now that Saddam's regime appears to be gone from Baghdad, I hope that the remaining Ba'thist controlled cities will surrender peacefully, rather than fight it out.
All in all, the civilian casualties are lower than what I expected, while the coalition casualties are higher.
However, now it's time to rebuild Iraq. Hopefully the Coalition will do a better job in Iraq, than what they did in Afghanistan.
Wednesday, April 09, 2003
The Rising Seas
Thanks to John Daly's website, I found this great page.
It's a collection of satellite data on the global sea levels. The data runs from 1992 to 2002. It indicates that the seas are rising on average by 2.3 +/- 0.1 mm/year.
Temperature in January 2003
The National Climatic Data Center has recently released their report for January's temperature.
Unsurprisingly, it's been hot. In fact, the combined ocean and land temperatures are 0.60 degrees above the 1880 - 2002 average, making this the third warmest January (the warmest was last year) during this period.
The Stupidest Person on the Internet
Stewart Kelly appears to have flushed out the stupidest person on the internet.
Some of these gems are priceless:
"But when it comes to the suffering of soldiers' families, I could dump a tanker-load of clue in a vast, toxic slick, and barely skim the surface of my clue reservoir."
"Those who reluctantly support war, with every pious caveat and disclaimer, may as well save their putrid, equivocating breath. The object is not some elevated, blameless moral state. The object is victory. The reluctant soldier cannot win."
And of course the blog has the title "A Blog by a Brilliant, Uneducated Snob", I guess that 2 out of 3 ain't bad.
Here is an interesting article on the reconstruction (or lack of) of Afghanistan.
John Daly has replied to my email. I've asked for permission to post it, as it's always better to be read what he says, rather than my interpretation of it.
The Human Cost of War
While the total casualties of the war in Iraq have been lower than many expected (the number of Coalition deaths, however, is already higher than my earlier prediction of >100), the effects of the war on the civilian population is still massive.
Likewise, I can't do anything but agree with Russell Brown when he states "But - through patriotism, fear or a mixture of both - many of them have kept coming. They have crowded into cars and buses and charged the US lines, AK47s pointlessly blazing, imminent precision death assured. They all have families. If you don't feel anything about that, you have no soul" on the deaths of Iraqi combatants.
Quote of the Day
Let them bask in their illusions
-- Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf on the reported death of General Ali Hassan al-Majid. Goes to show that irony isn't dead.