Thursday, March 30, 2006

Peggy Noonan's Take On Immigration & Love of the USA

"It's the broad public knowledge, or intuition, in America, that we are not assimilating our immigrants patriotically. And if you don't do that, you'll lose it all.
We used to do it. We loved our country with full-throated love, we had no ambivalence. We had pride and appreciation. We were a free country. We communicated our pride and delight in this in a million ways--in our schools, our movies, our popular songs, our newspapers. It was just there, in the air. Immigrants breathed it in. That's how the last great wave of immigrants, the European wave of 1880-1920, was turned into a great wave of Americans.
We are not assimilating our immigrants patriotically now. We are assimilating them culturally. Within a generation their children speak Valley Girl on cell phones. "So I'm like 'no," and he's all 'yeah,' and I'm like, 'In your dreams.' " Whether their parents are from Trinidad, Bosnia, Lebanon or Chile, their children, once Americans, know the same music, the same references, watch the same shows. And to a degree and in a way it will hold them together. But not forever and not in a crunch.
So far we are assimilating our immigrants economically, too. They come here and work. Good.
But we are not communicating love of country. We are not giving them the great legend of our country. We are losing that great legend.
What is the legend, the myth? That God made this a special place. That they're joining something special. That the streets are paved with more than gold--they're paved with the greatest thoughts man ever had, the greatest decisions he ever made, about how to live. We have free thought, free speech, freedom of worship. Look at the literature of the Republic: the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Federalist papers. Look at the great rich history, the courage and sacrifice, the house-raisings, the stubbornness. The Puritans, the Indians, the City on a Hill.
The genius cluster--Jefferson, Hamilton, Adams, Madison, Franklin, all the rest--that came along at the exact same moment to lead us. And then Washington, a great man in the greatest way, not in unearned gifts well used (i.e., a high IQ followed by high attainment) but in character, in moral nature effortfully developed. How did that happen? How did we get so lucky? (I once asked a great historian if he had thoughts on this, and he nodded. He said he had come to believe it was "providential.")
We fought a war to free slaves. We sent millions of white men to battle and destroyed a portion of our nation to free millions of black men. What kind of nation does this? We went to Europe, fought, died and won, and then taxed ourselves to save our enemies with the Marshall Plan. What kind of nation does this? Soviet communism stalked the world and we were the ones who steeled ourselves and taxed ourselves to stop it. Again: What kind of nation does this?
Only a very great one. Maybe the greatest of all.
Do we teach our immigrants that this is what they're joining? That this is the tradition they will now continue, and uphold?
Do we, today, act as if this is such a special place? No, not always, not even often. American exceptionalism is so yesterday. We don't want to be impolite. We don't want to offend. We don't want to seem narrow. In the age of globalism, honest patriotism seems like a faux pas.
And yet what is true of people is probably true of nations: if you don't have a well-grounded respect for yourself, you won't long sustain a well-grounded respect for others."

When Peggy " gets on a roll" she is very good. For the rest of her column click on the title above for a link. The above is only part of a much longer column that is very good. Don' t miss her talking about her dinner men who were awarded the Medal of Honor.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Jim WickRE or Jim WickER

All my life I have been called Jim WickrEEEEE. It's spelled Wickre but pronounced Wicker. To help people pronounce it correctly my dad always would say "it rhymes with liqueur." As a result one day A guy called him Marvin Whiskey. Again, it's spelled Wickre but pronounced the same as the funiture ....or basket.

Frank Mankiewicz remembers Lyn Nofziger

Click on the title above for a link to a Washington Post column in which Democratic strategist, Frank Mankiewicz ,remembers Lyn Nofziger, Reagan's press secretary who died a few days ago. The best part of the column is when he talks about a debate between then, Senator Robert Kennedy and then, California Governor Ronald Reagan which Mankiewicz and Nofzinger organized on CBS in 1967. Robert Kennedy before the debate though he would destroy Reagan the "B" movie actor. I watched that debate back in 1967 on TV in Coos Bay Oregon and thought Reagan clearly won the debate. Now 39 years later it is nice to know that the Kennedy people agreed with my assessment. After that debate every time someone told me Reagan was a "light weight" I would give the example of that debate to disprove their slander.

Spring Vacation

This week is Spring Vacation for students here in Oregon, both college and below. My son came home from college last Friday and left to go back to school today. He wanted to go back early to work on his senior thesis in Political Science. He did his History Thesis Fall term. He will graduate from college in May. This is an exciting time for him as he plans on going to grad school and is evaluating his grad school options.
I like it when he comes home . In addition to seeing him we get better or should I say more fun food. When he comes home we get ice cream, pies and pizza. When he is away my wife and I try to limit our intake of these "Fun" foods. Even though I don't get a spring vacation it is fun to watch those that do and live vicariously through them. My son appreciates historical movies and so while he was home we watched several on DVD. He is looking at a grad school in North Dakota ( University of North Dakota), as one of his options, so we watched the movie "Fargo" for fun. I had seen it back in 1998 when it first came out and It is still a good but gory movie. It also looks real cold! But then he is not going to grad school for a tan. He is also looking at several other grad schools including some closer to home. On to graduation or as they say commencement.

The Immigration Backlash Myth by Debra Saunders

"Of course America needs immigrants. This is a country founded by immigrants and made richer by the imprint of newcomers in search of a land that rewards their hard work and determination to make a better life for their families."

"The problem is that no country -- certainly, no country with a social safety net -- can afford to accommodate everyone who wants in. (Or as Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., put it, "We cannot be the HMO to the world.") That's why there are immigration policies that limit the number of people who can immigrate here legally...."

"The Los Angeles Times duly reported, "Some Republicans fear that pushing too hard against illegal immigrants could backfire nationally, as with Proposition 187 (the 1994 ballot measure that sought to deny benefits for illegal immigrants that) helped spur record numbers of California Latinos to become U.S. citizens and register to vote. Those voters subsequently helped Democrats regain political control in the state."

"Call that the Backlash Myth. In fact, Prop. 187 passed with 59 percent of the vote, and GOP Gov. Pete Wilson, who championed the measure, was re-elected in 1994. In 2003, when Democratic Gov. Gray Davis signed a bill that would allow illegal immigrants to get driver's licenses, he so enraged voters that he sealed his political demise."

"If there is a backlash, it probably will be against the demonstrators. Even before students began blocking the Los Angeles streets to protest legislation in Congress to toughen penalties for illegal immigrants and smugglers, Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies told me over the telephone, "I hope they keep doing it. It just makes it less and less likely the Senate's going to pass any amnesty...."

"The answer is for Washington to toughen enforcement, penalize employers who hired undocumented workers and make border crossing more costly. Then fewer people will move illegally to America."

To read the rest of Debra Saunders column click on the link above.

It is time the United States built a good strong fence or fences along the U.S. border with Mexico and the will to defend the fence against illegal entry into this country. Those folks that came into Ellis Island did so legally.

Teddy Roosevelt on Immigration

"In the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the man's becoming in very fact an American, and nothing but an American...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn't an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag, and this excludes the red flag, which symbolizes all wars against liberty and civilization, just as much as it excludes any foreign flag of a nation to which we are hostile...We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language...and we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people." Jan 3, 1919******** BULLY*********

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

"Cap" Weinberger R.I.P.

Caspar Weinberger, U.S defense secretary under President Ronald Reagan, died on Tuesday at age 88. His and Ronald Reagan's legacy will be they brought down the Soviet Union and ended the Cold War.A longtime member of Reagan's inner circle of California friends, Weinberger was one of the president's strongest supporters in the Cabinet. He and Lyn Nofziger have both died within 24 hours of each other. Well, If there is a heaven it's a better place with "Dutch", Lyn and "Cap" telling stories and I am sure eating jelly beans. Thanks for everything and my thoughts are with your familys. Maybe, you have all now found that "shining city on the hill."

Monday, March 27, 2006

Lyn Nofziger R. I. P.

"Franklyn "Lyn" Nofziger, the rumpled and irreverent conservative who served
Ronald Reagan' as press secretary and political adviser, died of cancer Monday. He was 81." ( Now he and the Gipper are together again)

"Former first lady Nancy Reagan said in a statement Monday: "I was deeply saddened this afternoon when I heard of Lyn Nofziger's death. Lyn was with us from the gubernatorial campaign in 1965 through the early White House days, and Ronnie valued his advice Ã?— and good humor Ã?— as much as anyone's. I spoke with him just days ago and even though he knew the end was near, Lyn was hopeful and still in good spirits."

"He was a great big garrulous guy who was very serious about his politics and very serious about Ronald Reagan," Michael Deaver, who was President Reagan's deputy chief of staff, said Monday. "He was sort of the keeper of the flame."

"Conservative columnist George F. Will once described the nonconformist, cigar-chomping Nofziger as "Sancho Panza" to Reagan's Don Quixote.Bombay gin, outrageous puns and fierce loyalty to Reagan and conservative Republican principles were Nofziger hallmarks. His caustic wit made him a favorite among some reporters who covered Reagan as governor and president and on his various campaigns.
Nofziger stood out in his rumpled sports coats and slacks. His trademark was a tie with a picture of Mickey Mouse, a visual statement of what he thought about Washington."

"Nofziger was the aide who announced to the world that Reagan had been shot in the 1981 assassination attempt by John W. Hinckley Jr. Nofziger's statement, to reporters in the driveway of George Washington University Hospital"

Click on title for link to the rest of AP news report.

Thanks Lyn.... we will never forget those days when you "rode" with Reagan. When Reagan led the charge with flags flying you were the one who blew the bugle . Those were great days!

UPDATE: Something I did not know about Lyn, he was a US Army Ranger at Normandy in WWII and lost a finger. Where does this country get such men.

What's at stake in the dispute over Iranian nukes? Ultimately, human survival

By CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER: "....We're now at the dawn of an era in which an extreme and fanatical religious ideology, undeterred by the usual calculations of prudence and self-preservation, is wielding state power and will soon be wielding nuclear power.

We have difficulty understanding the mentality of Iran's newest rulers. Then again, we don't understand the mentality of the men who flew into the World Trade Center or the mobs in Damascus and Tehran who chant "Death to America"--and Denmark(!)--and embrace the glory and romance of martyrdom..... "

A very chilling column by Charles Krauthammer and a must read! To read the entire column click on the title above for a link.

GO BUSH by Debra Saunders

Debra Saunders of the San Francisco Chronicle in a column points out why she still supports President Bush. She says "When television news anchors announce bad news ( about Iraq) they usually frame it as a reflection on Bush , not the insurgents......."

"Tony Blair put it in a speech last week, insurgency forces plays our own media with a shrewdness that would be the envy of many a political party. Every act of carnage adds to the death toll"

"But somehow, it serves to indicate our responsibility for disorder, rather than the act of wickedness that causes it....."

"Democrats repeatedly have voted in favor of his proposal--- Iraq, the Patriot Act-- only to snipe at them when they see an opportunity to wound the Republican president. "

"...With all his faults the president is trying to do something great. If he succeeds, the would will be a better place" That's what matters."

To read Debra Saunders entire column click on the title above for a link.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Directed By John Ford: Part III

To the left is the grave stone of John and Mary Ford. He was very proud that he was made an Admiral in the U.S. Navy. "1896-1979 Portland Me- Hollywood Mary Ford 1896-1979 His beloved wife of 59 years"

Due to my fascination with John Ford I have a built a library of his biographies as follows:
Pappy: the Life of John Ford by Dan Ford. This was written by his grand son and is the first biography I read. It's my favorite and the most sympathetic
Searching for John Ford A Life by Joseph McBride. The most extensive and the most researched . This bio corrects other bios that were victims of Ford's habit of "story telling"
John Ford by Peter Bogdanovich. Yes, that Peter Bogdanovich was a great admirer of John Ford and became his friend toward the end of Ford's life.
About John Ford by Lindsay Anderson. Anderson also became of friend of Ford in his later life.
John Ford a Biography by Andrew Sinclair
John Ford by Joseph McBride and Michael Wilmington
Print The Legend....The Life And Times of John Ford by Scott Eyman
John Ford.... Hollywood's Old Master by Ronald L. Davis
John Ford... The Man and His Films by Tag Gallaagher
John Ford Made Westerns.....Filming the Legend in the Sound Era

J.A. Place has written two books on John Ford's films called:
The Western Films of John Ford &
The Non-Western Films of John Ford

There are three other books that touch extensively on John Ford's life:
Katharine Hepburn by Barbara Leaming. This book goes into the relationship between Ford and Hepburn. Dan Ford, John's grand son ,denies parts of this bio. But as was said in Ford's film "The Man Who Shot liberty Valance" "When Legend becomes fact print the legend"

Company of hero's My life As An Actor In The John Ford Stock Company by Harry Carey,Jr

Tis Herself by Maureen O'Hara. Maureen talks about John Ford's obsession with her and makes allegations about Ford's sexual orientation. She ends by writing this about John Ford:

"Who was John Ford the man? To figure that out we must make sense of all his contradictions and reconcile the personal conflicts that he buried deep within himself and surrounded with walls built of secrecy, lies and aggression. This labyrinth was built stone by stone, like the Pyramids, and I don't believe the old man ever wanted to be found out or exposed in any way. An enigma? Absolutely---and of his precise making. .....he loved me very much and even thought that he was in love with me. Sadly, Mary Kate was only a character in a movie( The Quiet Man) and could never be his salvation..... So as I conclude my thoughts on John Ford, I reaffirm my respect, admiration, and friendship for him by saying "I love you too Pappy""

An "Enigma" maybe that's why he is so fascinating, "Print the Legend!"

Orsen Wells: "John Ford was my Teacher"

Directed By John Ford: Part II

Picture on left is of me at "John Fords Points" in Monument Valley.

Click on the title above for a link to the Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB) pages on Director John Ford. Leonard Maltin has a mini biography of John Ford. In addition to being a movie director he sailed and traveled for months and months to the South Pacific in the 1920/30's. He loved to spend time on his sailboat (yacht) the Araner. (You can see it in Donovan's Reef) He and his friends would sail out to Catalina Island and down to Mexico. They would drink and play cards. It was his way to get away from the world and to relax. During the war he organized a photo unit for the Navy and OSS the forerunner for the CIA. He happened to be at Midway Island just in time for the major WWII naval battle and filmed part of it and made an Academy Award winning documentary. He was also at the Normandy Landings on D-Day with a PT Boat Unit. After the war he set up a recreational headquarters home/park for members of his naval unit so they could get together after the war for parties and reunions . The man led an incredible fascinating life. He was an alcoholic and had a mean streak but was also a sentimentalist. The "Ford Stock Company" was made up of actors and film crew that made movie after movie together. He started in the silent era and made movies into the 1970's. He was in love with Katherine Hepburn but would not leave his wife due to his Catholicism. Hepburn then moved on to another man who wouldn't marry her Spencer Tracy.
When on location making westerns Ford would have campfire parties at night for his crew and there were many rituals such as the paying of music and card games.

Harry Carey, Jr has written of this in his book "Company of Heroes..... My Life As An Actor In The John Ford Stock company"

Ford's parents came from Ireland and he never forgot his Irish roots. ( The Quiet Man) However his body of work celebrates America. He loved American history and was a Civil War buff.

I grew up on his movies and at least partly learned my love of America and it's history from him.

Directed By John Ford : Part I

My son came home from college last night for Spring Vacation and we sat down and watched my new DVD of Young Mr. Lincoln from 1939 directed by John Ford. See post below. In some ways I am more of a fan of John Ford than of John Wayne. John Ford led a very interesting life and in my posts to follow I will discuss his life. The picture on the left of John Ford hangs in my movie room. I thought it would be fun to list my favorite John Ford Movies:

Stagecoach (1939) *
Young Mr. Lincoln (1939)#
Drums Along the Mohawk (1939)#
The Grapes of Wrath (1940)#
How Green Was My Valley (1941)
Battle of Midway (1942)---- documentary --- Ford was there!
They Were Expendable (1945)*
My Darling Clementine (1946)#
Fort Apache (1948)* # Calvary Trilogy
She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949) * Calvary Trilogy
Rio Grande (1950)* Calvary Trilogy
The Quiet Man (1952)*
The Searchers (1956)*
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)*
How the West was Won (1962)* He directed the Civil War Segment
(* Staring John Wayne)
(# Staring Henry Fonda)

He made many more but these are my favorite. I can and do, watch them again and
again. To see a list of John Ford DVD's in my library go to DVD by clicking on the title above for a link.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

ABC NEWS EXEC.: "Bush Makes Me Sick"

John R Green an executive at ABC NEWS sent a blackberry e-mail that said : "Are you watching this? Bush makes me sick.... I'm going to puke." Unfortunately for Mr Green the Drudge Report obtained a copy of the e-mail and posted it on the Drudge Report. My wife likes to watch Good Morning America, as we get ready for work and I have for several years detected a real bias against George w Bush. Now I know why. I am sure Mr Green is not alone at ABC News in feeling this way. The following is a Press Release ABC NEWS sent out when Mr Green was promoted and points out that he is "heavily involved.... in the editorial content of the broadcast." There is a reason I like FOX NEWS


John Green has been named executive producer of ABC News' weekend edition of "Good Morning America," it was announced today by David Weston, president of ABC News. The weekend morning news program, which will be launched in September 2004, will air on Saturday and Sunday mornings on the ABC Television Network. Mr. Green is currently a senior producer of "Good Morning America." He will report to Phyllis McGrath, senior vice president of ABC News.

"For the past 10 years John has been an integral member of the 'Good Morning America' team. I'm pleased that he will be able to build on the strengths of the program and take his creativity and invaluable experience to the weekends," said Mr. Westin. "Millions of loyal viewers watch 'Good Morning America' five days a week. Expanding the program to seven days is exciting for ABC News and the 'Good Morning America' franchise."

"Coming from 'Good Morning America,' I'm thrilled to take on this new opportunity. I look forward to expanding on the great work that Diane, Charlie, Robin, Tony and the whole 'GMA' family do during the week, while creating a distinctive flavor for the weekend," said Mr. Green.

Mr. Green joined ABC News in 1994 as a segment producer at "Good Morning America," where he has worked in various capacities for ten years. As a senior producer for the past three years, Mr. Green has been heavily involved in programming and the Editorial content of the broadcast, most recently serving as line producer in the control room. At "Good Morning America" Mr. Green has covered numerous high profile breaking news stories, including the crash of TWA flight 800, the OJ Simpson trial, the Oklahoma City bombing and trial of Timothy McVeigh, the investigation into the death of Princess Diana, the historic papal visit to Cuba, the Columbine High School shootings and the September 11 attacks. Mr. Green has also produced several full-show originations from remote locations around the country as part of ABC News' "50 States: One Nation, One Year" project. He was part of the ABC News team that received a Peabody Award for its coverage of the events of September 11 and their aftermath.

Prior to coming to ABC News, from 1991 to 1994, Mr. Green produced morning news and a weekly bilingual newsmagazine at ABC affiliate WCVB-TV in Boston. In 1990 he began his career in journalism as a freelance writer at CBS affiliate WHDH-TV in Boston.

A St. Louis native, Mr. Green is a graduate of Washington University and received a masters degree in mass communications from Boston University. He resides in New York City.

Link between Saddam and Bin Laden

ABC News is reporting the Bin Laden sought an operational relationship with Saddam for attacks on U.S. troops in the Persian gulf area before the U.S. invasion of Iraq.Iraq left the door open for such cooperation. ABC news is in possession of documents supporting this conclusion. For the ABC News report click on the title above for a link

Michael Medved's Review of Movie: " V for Vendetta"

Michael Medved states that the movie "qualifies as only mediocre entertainment, but offers a brilliant illustration of today's warped leftist mindset.....

The film unequivocally glorifies a terrorist bomber and portrays his ultimate triumph with the cataclysmic destruction of the Houses of Parliament in London.....

"V" for Vile, Vacuous, Venal and Vapid."

For Michael Medved's entire review click on the title above for a link.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

A.P. Partisan?

I have been a news junkie since I was very young back in the early 60's. I always believed that the Associated Press Wire service was very balanced in its news reports. "Just the Facts" as Joe Friday would say on the TV series Dragnet. However in the last few years I have noticed a definite anti Bush or anti Republican tone in the AP's coverage. This is something I didn't notice even during the Reagan or the first Bush administration. Click on the title above for a link to an Editor and Publisher report on a news report by AP reporter Jennifer Loven that illustrates the trend of the AP to sound like a taking points memo of the Democratic Party. What's disturbing about this is the AP is used by many newspapers, TV stations and Radio Stations as their primary source of national news. Next time you read an AP news report remember it is no longer "just the facts" but a lot of opinion even if it is not labeled as such. Too bad!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Bush shuts down Helen Thomas

Helen Thomas, a bitter partisan liberal, masquerading as a reporter, was put in her place today by President Bush. At the President's press conference today she was called upon for a question and she launched into a political diatribe on how President Bush had wanted war from the beginning of his presidency and he reminded her that it was 9/11 that changed everything and was the beginning of the War on Terrorism. Thomas tried repeatedly to interrupt the President but he was in full command and rebutted her highly inflammatory question and refused to be interrupted. Good job W, I loved it!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Portland Oregon Protesters burn Old Glory!

Protesters burn US flags on Naito Parkway near disbandment area in Waterfront park at the end of Sunday's protest march in downtown Portland, Oregon. They hate America and want us to lose in Iraq. The blame America first crowd. Portland Oregon..... can you say Beirut West? The picture says it all.

Yard Work.... Love/Hate Relationship

I have a love/hate relationship with my yard. I love a nice yard but I hate the work necessary to keep it that way. The trees in my yard lose their leaves in the fall, winter AND spring. Therefore, except in summer, raking leaves is a year round project. I have a driveway that slopes down from our circle into the ground so that you can drive into our garage that is under the house. There are retaining walls on three sides. As a result all the leaves from the circle blow down into our driveway. It is sort of a funnel. I therefore have to sweep leaves every week. On Saturday I put some fertilizer and moss killer on our lawns. We have had so much rain this year the lawn is full of moss. Fertilizer makes the lawn look nice but then you have to mow it. Our house is next to a little stream that is on city property. The city does not take care of the property next to to the stream so I am always weed- eating the city property so we can see the stream. My wife is in charge of flowers and rose bushes and does a nice job. Before long the weekly lawn mowing will start. I also want to redo the retaining walls on the side yard when the weather gets better.. On job I love is using Round-Up to kill the weeds. The kids used to help do yard work when they lived at home but now they are gone. My next house will have little or no yard work.

Civil War in ...........France!

"Oh, Mon Dieu! France is on the BRINK OF CIVIL WAR! "
Rich Galen, some what tongue in cheek, points out that the American media is missing the outbreak of civil war in France. For his entire column click on the title above for a link.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Never again!

The picture on the left makes me sick! It shows the evacuation of Vietnamese from the US embassy roof in Saigon in the last hours before the fall of Saigon and the Communist North Vietnamese takeover over of South Vietnam. America was defeated not on the battlefield but due to a lack of will by the American anti war left. They are trying it again but this time they will fail.

Over thirty years ago in 1975 South Vietnam fell to the Communist. Back in those days there was no Fox News or even CNN. I remember watching the Associated Press teletype printed on my cable TV screen describe the fall of Saigon. It made me sick then and it still makes me sick now over thirty years later. Following the fall of Saigon we had the boat people (South Vietnamese attempting to leave South Vietnam) and the Killing Fields in Cambodia. Today the South Vietnamese people live in slavery and the world still doubts American resolve! We ran from Vietnam, we ran from Lebanon, we ran from Somalia ( Black Hawk Down) Well, this time George W Bush is our President and we stopped running!

Give up in Iraq.....Hell No!

U.S. security depends on Iraq democracy: by Senator John McCain

Three years after the invasion of Iraq, Americans understandably wonder where we go from here. Iraq is today in the throes of another critical moment in its post-Saddam history, with both obvious difficulties and enduring hopes. We see a new constitution and parliament but greater sectarian violence; progress toward the formation of a unity government but an ongoing insurgency; more Iraqis taking on security roles but still an insufficient number to secure the country. At home, the American people wish to see us prevail but express uncertainty about the costs and strategy.The war in Iraq has not gone as well as we had hoped, and we have made mistakes that have cost us dearly. Too many of the very best people in this country have sacrificed their lives for us in a conflict that has had many setbacks and where we will face other tough times ahead.There's no point in denying that sad truth. There is also little to be gained from rehashing the pre-war debate over the wisdom of toppling Saddam Hussein. I continue to believe that the president was right to bring Saddam's brutal and dangerous regime to an end, but this is now a debate for historians

What is undeniable, however, is that America is enormously invested in the outcome of the conflict in Iraq. Our national security, the strength of our international partnerships, and our commitment to all those who have fought there turn on the outcome of this war.If we should withdraw from Iraq and simply wash our hands of the situation there, we risk creating a failed state in the heart of the Middle East, a situation that would enable terrorists to train and plan attacks against the United States with impunity.We saw just such a situation develop in Afghanistan after international disengagement from that country, and it resulted in 9/11. We must not make that mistake again.And by turning over security to the as-yet-unprepared Iraqi forces, we threaten to plunge that country into a true civil war that could destabilize the entire Middle East and invite intervention from Iraq's regional neighbors. If we do not prevail in Iraq, we send our partners and our enemies the same message: America has neither the capability nor the will to sustain its operations through to victory.For all these reasons, we must see this conflict through to the end. That means correcting our mistakes, building on our progress, and helping to plant in the most dangerous region in the world the seeds of democracy that will influence its neighbors. By doing so, we can begin to promote change in the oppressed societies that have bred the terrorists who threaten us.We can and must succeed in this effort, but we should make no mistake: It will take more time, more money, and more brave Americans will lose their lives in the service of their country.That is the reality of the situation today. The challenge is not how to formulate a quick exit strategy, but rather to address the changes required to increase the odds of victory. From the beginning, coalition forces have lacked the requisite number of troops to stabilize the country, and so any plan for a partial withdrawal should be off the table for the near future.Ideally we would increase our forces in Iraq but, at a minimum, newly trained and equipped Iraqi troops should supplement, not substitute for, coalition forces. These soldiers should be engaged in a military counterinsurgency strategy, combined with traditional security operations, rather than following their previous model: sweeping into cities to root out insurgents and then leaving to do the same elsewhere.The Pentagon has made progress in moving toward such a strategy, but it will take much more time before it can effectively neutralize the insurgency. In addition, sectarian violence and the strength of militias can be reduced by ensuring that Iraqi National Army units and their counterparts in the Ministry of Interior are integrated by ethnicity and sect, and by increasing the diplomatic effort to urge a unity government in Iraq.This diplomatic effort needs to be constant and take place at the highest levels of our government. Various elements of our strategy, including reconstruction, intelligence and others, must receive priority over other issues in Washington.We are in the midst of a war, and we cannot simply consign it to our armed forces to win or lose.Above all we must stand behind the commitment we have made as a country, both to our own national security and to the Iraqi people. Times are tough, the costs have been high, and they will grow higher yet. But morality, national security, and the honor our fallen deserve all compel us to see through our mission in Iraq to victory. Should we abandon our responsibility at this critical time in history, we as a country will be poorer in every dimension for it.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Movies Filmed in Eugene

The following is a list of the major movies filmed in or around the University of Oregon campus in Eugene Oregon. For a complete list click on the title above for a link to a site that catalogs movies filmed in Oregon. You can also check out the Internet Movie Data B(IMDB) The Movies are:

Five Easy Pieces (1970) The famous restaurant scene with Jack Nicholson was filmed at Denny's on I-5 just south of Eugene.

Getting Straight (1970) Filmed on location at Lane Community College with Eliot Gould. A story of campus unrest in 1970.

Drive He Said (1971) Another film about campus unrest. See post below

Animal House (1978) A classic. See post below

How to Beat the High Co$t of Living (1980) Stars Jane Curtin (from Saturday Night Live), Susan Saint James and Jessica Lang. Much of it was filmed at The Valley River Mall

Personal Best (1982) Movie about track filmed a Hayward Field, Oregon's track stadium.

Without Limits (1998) Movie about runner Steve Prefontaine. Some scenes were filmed at Hayward Field. If you look real close you will see the Wickre family. The four of us were extras in the crowd scenes at Hayward field. We are all wearing yellow "Go PRE" Tee shirts. One of my claims to fame is when I slept in the same tent with Steve when I was about 15 and he was 12 when our two family's went camping together in the early 1960's

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Animal House

Animal House is one of my favorite movies. It was filmed on the University of Oregon campus . The movie Drive,he Said, also was filmed at the UofO ( see post below) and took place on a college campus in the late 1960'S. Animal House was filmed in 1978, but takes place in 1962.... a much simpler time. For a link to the Internet Move Data Base (IMDB) page for Animal House click on the title above.

Drive, He Said: a Movie I would like to see on DVD

Drive, He Said was a movie released in 1971. It was directed by Jack Nicholson. and filmed at the University of Oregon. I was a student at the UofO in 1971 having returned there for Law School after two years in the US Army. Jack Nicholson had became famous after Easy Rider and this was his first attempt at being a director. I agree completely with the reviewer below that this film comes the closest of any film in capturing the American college experience of the late 1960's to early 70's. While I do not agree with the point of the film it really captures a time and place of my youth. I wish it was on DVD. A few years later another movie would be filmed on the University of Oregon campus that would capture an earlier period on the American college campus.... Animal House. To go to the Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB) listing of Drive He Said click on the title above for a link. The best review on that site is as follows:

"This may be the only film that actually comes close to capturing on film the essentially uncapturable world of the American college experience of the late 60s-early 70s. Go ahead, name another movie that even approaches this one: "Getting Straight"? "RPM"? These are caricatures. "Return of the Secaucus Seven" has its moments, but that's a retrospective film about (self-obsessed) individuals more than a film about a time and a place depicted *in* that time and place. "Drive, He Said" portrays-- with subtlety and nuance where it should, and a swift kick in the shorts where that's the only appropriate way-- the anti-draft movement, the ambiguity of big-time college sports (especially when there's a war on), the sexual revolution of the period, and the general unreality of the day. Believe me, it was like that.The whole cast deserves commendation (as does the director, of course) but particular praise should be reserved for Bruce Dern, as the basketball coach, and Karen Black, the hero's very unusual-- except for that time-- love interest. William Tepper, as the lead, also rates a real round of applause both for his perfect capturing of the student-athlete of the period and for actually playing real college basketball in the film (remember Anthony Perkins in "Tall Story"? Yikes!).All in all, a classic of a kind...."

The 2005 Oregon Football Season Highlight DVD

Re-live the excitement of the spectacular 2005 Oregon Ducks, as they rise for an unranked preseason to the nation's number five team. From opening kickoff in Houston, to the dominating win in the Civil War and the Holiday Bowl berth, we'll take you inside the program for never-before seen footage and all the high flying drama from the 10 win season. This is Oregon Football 2005 - A season of heart, a season of unprecedented unity, and truly a season for the ages.
The DVD also comes jam-packed with added features including:

2005 Season Highlights including:

The 2005 Holiday Bowl
Nike's Oregon Gameday Experience
2000-05 DuckVision Intros
Kellen Clemens Monday Night Live Interview

Something to watch while I am waiting for the Spring Game. Go Ducks!

Update: I got my copy and it is great! 2000-2005 Duck Vision Intros are lots of fun........"Kenny Wheatons going to score..... Kenny Wheatons going to score........" How can you not love it!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Congratulations to South Medford High Basketball Team

This weekend my wife and I spent the weekend in Eugene, Oregon at the State 4A High School Basketball Championship. Our Son traveled down from Salem Oregon to join us. South Medford was in the final eight that made the trip to Mac Court on the University of Oregon Campus. On Friday night we saw the South Medford Panthers beat Jesuit High on a last second basket to take the lead in the game for the first time. This put the South Medford Panthers into the Championship game on Saturday night against Lake Oswego High. To celebrate we went to Track Town Pizza to watch the end of the Oregon vs Cal basketball game on TV down at the Pac-10 Basketball Tournament in LA. ( the Duck's lost and thus their season ended) Lake Oswego is a very rich suburb of Portland. We got in line for the Saturday night game 11/2 hours before the game. It looked like the entire city of Medford had traveled the 3 hours up I-5 to Eugene for the game. Medford fans out numbered Lake Oswego three to one. As I told my son "All Medford is here today" A line I stole and changed from the movie Gettysburg. The game was like a prize fight between two champions. However South Medford dream season ended when they missed a three point shot in the last second to lose by 2 points and take second at State. It was a great ride from the games in December all the way through the playoffs. Way to go South and thanks! Congratulations to Coach Murphy and all the players. You made a cold and rainy winter, a winter to remember. A season like this doesn't happen very often and it should be treasured. For those of you who have never gone to a high school state basketball tournament you have missed something. Go rent the movie Hoosiers on DVD. Go Panthers!

Whatever happened to Randolph Scott?

This weekend I bought two DVD movies staring Randolph Scott from the 1950's. When I was a kid in the 50's I used to love going to the Drive In Theatre with my folks and watching Randolph Scott Westerns . In fact , if truth be told, I was a fan of Randolph Scott before I was a John Wayne fan. Click on the title above for a link to Scott's Bio on In 1973 the Statler brother had a hit called Whatevere happened to Randolph Scott? the lyrics are as follows:

Everybody knows when you go to the show You can't take the kids along You've gotta read the paper And know the code of G PG and R and X And you gotta know what the movie's about Before you even go Tex Ritter's gone and Disney's dead And the screen is filled with sex Whatever happened to Randolph Scott Ridin' the train alone Whatever happened to Gene and Tex And Roy and Rex, The Durango Kid Oh, whatever happened to Randolph Scott His horse plain as could be Whatever happened to Randolph ScottHas happened to the best of me Everybody's tryin' to make a comment About our doubts and fears True Grit's the only movie I've really understood in years You gotta take your analyst along To see if it's fit to see Whatever happened to Randolph ScottHas happened to the industry Whatever happened to Johnny Mack Brown And Alan Rocky Lane Whatever happened to Lash LaRue I'd love to see them again Whatever happened to Smiley Burnette Tim Holt and Gene Autry Whatever happened to all of these Has happened to the best of me Whatever happened to Randolph Scott Has happened to the industry

Friday, March 10, 2006

Snow Snow Snow

It snowed this morning in Medford and now the sun has come out. It is a winter wonder land outside. Medford today reminds me of a quaint New England village in winter. The sun will burn off the snow in a couple of hours but it is beautiful now. There is something about snow that refreshes the spirit. The Ducks winning also does that. Go South Medford Win State. It's March Madness.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

South Medford Panthers Wins! & Oregon Ducks Win!

The South Medford Panthers beat West Salem tonight to advance to the Final Four of the Oregon High School 4-A Basketball Championship Tournament at Mac Court on the University of Oregon campus. Go Panthers!

The University of Oregon Ducks beat the Washington Huskies tonight to advance to the Final Four of the Pac-10 Basketball Tournament at the Staples Center in Los Angels. Go Ducks!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Arriving just in time for Fathers's Day!

One of the Greatest Director-Star Combinations in Hollywood History ``The John Wayne-John Ford Collection'' on DVD June 6 from Warner Home Video
BURBANK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--March 6, 2006--One of the greatest director-star combinations in the history of Hollywood gets the Warner Home Video deluxe DVD treatment with the June 6 release of "The John Wayne-John Ford Collection," a ten-disc set featuring eight of the team's finest collaborations. Anchoring the Collection, and arriving just in time for Father's Day, is "The Searchers: Ultimate Collector's Edition" which includes a Two-Disc Special Edition DVD with extensive all-new bonus features, plus a full-color 36-page press book, a 36-page reproduction of the original Dell comic book, filmmaker memos and correspondence, several behind-the-scenes photos and a mail-in theatrical poster.
The collection also features "Stagecoach: Two-Disc Special Edition," newly remastered and restored from original VistaVision film elements and loaded with new bonus content and three titles making their DVD debuts: the classic western "Fort Apache," and the stirring war films "The Long Voyage Home" and "Wings of Eagles." Rounding out the set are the timeless classics "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" and "They Were Expendable" (in new Amaray packaging) plus "3 Godfathers," which is available for the first time in wide release with this Collection.
"The Searchers" will be available individually in both the 50th Anniversary Two-Disc Special Edition for $26.99 SRP and the Ultimate Collector's Edition priced at $34.92 SRP. The "Stagecoach: Two-Disc Special Edition" will be available for $26.99 SRP and the single disc titles will sell individually for various prices from $12.97-$19.97 SRP. The price for the entire ten-disc Collection is $79.92 SRP.
In the now well-established WHV DVD Classics tradition, "The Searchers" has been painstakingly remastered and restored from original VistaVision film elements. Also restored from original and best available elements are "Fort Apache" and "Stagecoach" and "Wings of Eagles" is newly remastered in 16x9 format, enhanced for widescreen televisions (1.85:1 aspect ratio). The Collection bonus materials include an introduction by Patrick Wayne (John's son), an all-new feature-length documentary American Masters: John Ford/John Wayne: The Filmmaker & the Legend produced by WNET/American Masters, commentaries by noted film director Peter Bogdanovich and Ford biographer Scott Eyman, several new featurettes, audio-only segments plus John Wayne home movies.
Art can be downloaded at

Sunday, March 05, 2006

"I shall never surrender or retreat"

The following is one of the last letters of William Barret Travis sent from the Alamo:

"I am besieged, by a thousand or more of the Mexicans under Santa Anna -- I have sustained a continual Bombardment & cannoned for 24 hours & have not lost a man -- The enemy has demanded a surrender at discretion, otherwise, the garrison are to be put to the sword, if the fort is taken -- I have answered the demand with a cannon shot, & our flag still waves proudly from the walls -- I shall never surrender or retreat. Then, I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism, & every thing dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch -- The enemy is receiving reinforcements daily & will no doubt increase to three or four thousand in four or five days. If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible & die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor & that of his country

William Barret Travis Lt. Col. Comdt."

William Barret Travis died at his post on the cannon platform at the northeast corner of the fortress.
He was 26 years old.

"Young Mr. Lincoln" DVD

While I was at the Oregon Coast the postman delivered the DVD "Young Mr. Lincoln" I had ordered from Deep Discount DVD. The Movie was just released on DVD and I had not been able to located it at stores in Medford. The movie was released in 1939 , and was directed by my favorite director, John Ford. Henry Fonda plays Lincoln. I have seen the move before on TV but never without commercial interruption and the movie has been beautifully restored for this DVD release as part of The Criterion Collection. I highly recommend the film and this DVD.

Geoffry O' Brien in a review makes the following comments:

In Young Mr. Lincoln, John Ford achieves the perfection of his art....It is a masterpiece of concision in which every element in every shot, every ratio, every movement, every shift of viewpoint seems dense with significance, yet it breathes an air of casual impovisation..... The film radiates a youthful joy, while at the same time insistently implying that the hero's destiny--the moment when the weight of history becomes unavoidable-- will necessarily mean the loss of all joy.... Henry Fonda's remarkable performance is impossible to consider apart from Ford's framing of it...we are invited to indulge a naive lyricism....When Lincoln walks into history, he walks in a sense out of the world of John Ford's cinema..... Ford was rarely comfortable portraying great historical moments head-on.... What interest him is the freedom that exist outside of history, the freedom symbolized in its lighter aspect, by the fleeting pleasures of camaraderie and communal merrymaking that he love to linger on.

It's ironic I should watch this movie today. John Ford, whose parents came from Ireland loved the United States. This movie portrays a patriotism that is rare in movies today. It is an antidote for the anti Americanism found in many of the movies that will be "honored" tonight at the Academy Awards ceremony.

To read more about the movie click on the title above for a link to the Internet Movie Data Base (IMDB) page on Young Mr. Lincoln.

Trip to the Oregon Coast

This past week I attended a business conference at the Salishan golf resort near Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast. My wife accompanied me and we had a nice room with a gas fireplace. The resort has an internet cafe and nearby in Lincoln City is an Outlet Mall we visited twice.I spent some time in the internet cafe following a South Medford High playoff basketball game. On the way over we stopped at one of my favorite tourist traps ( I Love tourist traps) The Sea Lion Caves. One of the nice things is my sister was able to come on down from Portland and the three of us had dinner together Wednesday and Thursday nights. One night we went to a place called "The 60's cafe". The food was good and I loved the music. It looked like a place the locals like. This is the quite time on the Oregon coast that lives off the tourist trade. My sister is a retired school teacher, a Democrat and a liberal. When we were kids in 1960 she put a Kennedy bumper sticker on her bedroom door just to bug me. Regardless I love her and it was nice to spend some time with her.

South Medford on to State!

The South Medford Basketball team beat Mountain View of Bend by 30 points 62 to 32 to make it to the elite 8 in the State of Oregon High School playoffs and as a result will go to the University of Oregon's Mac Court next week for the state finals. Picture to left is South's Coach Dennis Murphy after a South win. Go Panthers take State! (For the playoff brackets click on the title above for a link)

Air Coos by Nike

Yesterday I received an email from a friend who told me not to go to G I Joes (a sporting goods store) in Medford and that I had been warned. His e-mail also included a link to this picture . This is a new shoe called "Air Coos" put out by Nike to honor Coos Bay Oregon the home town of University of Oregon long distance runner Steve Prefontaine. I couldn't resist and drove down to GI Joes as I listened to the Oregon vs Oregon State Basketball game on the radio. (Ducks lost) I also grew up in Coos Bay/ North Bend and knew Steve. Our parents were good friends and my parents last home was one block from Steve's parents home. At the check stand the clerk said the shoes had very bright colors and I replied that "They are the right colors," University of Oregon Green and Yellow. Thanks Phil Knight! GO DUCKS !

Saturday, March 04, 2006

No Academy Awards Show for Me !

Tomorrow night is the Academy Awards Show on TV. With one exception, I have watched EVERY Academy Awards show since 1957 when The Bridge on the River Kwai won for Best Picture. The one exception, as my luck would have it, was in 1970 when I was in Officer Candidate School (OCS) in the Army at Fort Belvoir in Virginia. Somehow the Army didn't think the show was that important for the training of a US Army Officer. My bad luck is that was the year John Wayne won Best Actor for True Grit. The Award presenter of all people was Barbara Strisend. In any case, I will not watch this year for the reasons set forth by Charles Krauthammer below. Usually in the winter I am trying to watch every picture that has been nominated for Best Picture. This year I have not seen one. I don't intend on seeing any and will not buy or rent them when they come out on DVD. I love movies as my DVD collection demonstrates but not this year. Maybe next year. So while the Acadamy Awards Show is on TV I will run my DVD copy of John Wayn's The Alamo from 1960.

To see my DVD collection click on the title above for a link

Oscars for Osama by Charles Krauthamer

Nothing tells you more about Hollywood than what it chooses to honor. Nominated for best foreign-language film is "Paradise Now," a sympathetic portrayal of two suicide bombers. Nominated for best picture is "Munich," a sympathetic portrayal of yesterday's fashion in barbarism: homicide terrorism.
But until you see "Syriana," nominated for best screenplay (and George Clooney, for best supporting actor) you have no idea how self-flagellation and self-loathing pass for complexity and moral seriousness in Hollywood.....

In my naivete, I used to think that Hollywood had achieved its nadir with Oliver Stone's "JFK," a film that taught a generation of Americans that President John F. Kennedy was assassinated by the CIA and the FBI in collaboration with Lyndon Johnson. But at least it was for domestic consumption, an internal affair of only marginal interest to other countries. "Syriana," however, is meant for export, carrying the most vicious and pernicious mendacities about America to a receptive world.
Most liberalism is angst- and guilt-ridden, seeing moral equivalence everywhere. "Syriana" is of a different species entirely -- a pathological variety that burns with the certainty of its malign anti-Americanism. Osama bin Laden could not have scripted this film with more conviction.

Te read all of Charles Krauthammer's column click on the title above for a link to the Washington Post column.