Good morning

Today I plan on doing another image update, and then I have to deal with the TT — it's developed a horrible spring noise upon gear changes, a crack has appeared in the windshield, and yesterday on the highway, the rear left tire tore off after detreading itself. I was talking to Ryan about him getting himself a car (since importing his from LA would be expensive and difficult). The “obvious” thing to do is to buy a new car, since presumably it will be trouble free. My experience has been the opposite. A new car costs far more, breaks just as often, gets worse mileage, and when it does break, costs five times as much to fix.

If you have $35k to spend, you could buy a new car for $28k, spend $5k to insure it over the first three years, and another $2k on repairs and maintenance. If at the end of those three years, your well maintained car is now worth $14k, so you've lost $21k over that timeperiod that you'll never get back. Alternately, you could buy a decent used car for $8k. Then you could go and buy a second decent used car for $8k. You could insure them both for $2k for the first three years, and spend about $5k on repairs and maintenance, leaving you with $12k in your pocket. At the end of the timeperiod, you could resell your cars for $4k each, with a resultant loss of $15k over the timeperiod (and for that $15k you get TWO cars, not ONE)… Those are just quick made up numbers, but you get my point I think.

Public opinion, even in the mainstream is starting to sway, with newspaper articles even in the big papers calling the “war on terrorism” a fraud. It's one thing with an Afghan source claims that, but when these articles start getting printed in British papers, then maybe it means the war will end, simply for PR reasons.

Bombing managed to take out three more villages… and the Red Cross is obviously not too happy either. The thing about the Red Cross is that they're the closest thing to a neutral agency in Afghanstan — they have civil relations with both the Taliban and the Northern Alliance. Destroying the Red Cross buildings may well not be an accident — the US Defense Departments says they were “deliberately targeted” (but in error) — as it is an effective way to drag on the war. White House chief of staff Andrew Card says, “US operations are proceeding as we planned them“.

I've mentioned before that this is not a war that can be fought under modern rules. The military might of the US simply doesn't give an advantage… When you're fighting in villages that might as well be two thousand years old villages and in caves and mountain passes in the freezing cold, against an enemy armed with swords and axes, you can throw every modern rule out the window. Of course, when you accept the war is going to last 50 years, I'm sure their sheer financial might can eventually kill everyone.

PS. Bin Laden looks a LOT like Jesus, don't you think? I don't know if that's a coincidence, or if it makes him a messiah, or if it makes him the anti-Christ, but… weird!

PPS. The wayback machine is cool You can read the May 31st, 1997 edition of BME and all sorts of other neat stuff!

PPPS. Sure sucks to live in San Francisco, the CIA's testing ground.

Wow Shannon, that's really annoying! What is it, 1997 on Geocities? Retroweb is NOT cool!

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