Sunday, April 09, 2006

damn good coffee

I'm back. Got home from my trip yesterday afternoon and crashed soon after. I have been up this morning since 2:30 because of the time difference -- which is not great -- but I am still thrilled to be home.

Being home means drinking my own coffee (Cafe Bustelo with a dash of cinnamon in the grounds -- cheap, strong and damn good, like me) and reading my own newspaper.

I am easy to please.

I'm not pleased, however, with the front page story in this morning's Post about rumblings from the Bush administration about air strikes against Iran (and, I'm not a military expert or anything, but is it a good idea to aim at "key nuclear sites"?). Is this an effort to increase approval ratings, distract us from all the other nonsense? If it is, someone isn't paying attention -- have you heard anything about that war in Iraq you started back in 2002? Yeah, folks aren't that thrilled about it. Is it about putting policy ahead of politics? Is this NECESSARY? Apparently, it's an act of "coercive diplomacy," which, as a term, doesn't sound much like diplomacy at all.

Save us.

Also worth reading is the front page feature, reported by Post writer Anne Hull. A love of country, as well as a dearth of opportunity, are causing high school boys in Meridian, Mississippi to enlist in the military in droves. But the story's featured protagonist, Blake Johnson, isn't so sure. Will he or won't he? Read to find out.

(There's also an accompanying great photo/audio documentary on the Post web site that's worth checking out and which speaks to newspaper's ability to take things further through their online versions than they are able to in print.)

Finally, because I love prisons (well, I don't love them, but they are a fascination of mine) and because I love Brokeback Mountain (and Heath), I must share the news (scroll down) that prison officials in Massachusetts have disciplined a guard who screened the film for inmates because it contains "sexually explicit scenes that inappropriate in a prison setting". According to the state's Department of Correction, it has nothing to do with with the fact that the majority of the "sexually explicit scenes" are between two men. (Uh huh.)

By the way, in Massachusetts, it is illegal and punishable for prisoners to have sex with each other and, in an apparent attempt at deterrence, the state does not make condoms available to protect against HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases. Meanwhile, a study done in 2003 indicated that the prison system has the seventh highest HIV prevalence rate in the country.

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