A few random thoughts for a Thursday.
1. I think I've figured out how to solve the dilemma in Iraq. This actually came to me last spring, when I was driving across Wyomng en route to visit my son in Colorado.
Since we've totally trashed their country, let's make the following offer to the Iraqi people:
"If you're tired of worrying about frequent electrical blackouts and water shortages, drive-by shootings and suicide bombers in your marketplaces, we'd like to offer anyone who is willing to relocate a home in Wyoming, USA. It's safe, it's arid, they have oil there, there's plenty of room and it's Dick Cheney's state. What could be more fitting?
"Sorry, no terrorists. But for those of you who have become fond of blowing things up and shooting each other, you can stay in Iraq and have the time of your lives."
2. In the meantime, here's a way to solve the inner city gang problem and help in Iraq simultaneously -- put through special legislation allowing the government to draft all the gang members and send them over there as a unit. After all, what's happening in Iraq is essentially the same thing, just with Shiites and Sunnis instead of Crips and Bloods. Tell the gangstas that the Shiites and Sunnis are actually Middle Eastern "sets" of stateside gangs, and that they've disrespected them (for one thing, they don't allow hip hop). The U.S. gangs would probably be better armed.
3. Did you ever think about how criminal law rewards incompetence? If you shoot at someone and kill them, you're looking at the possibility of life in prison -- or death in prison. But if you're a bad shot and only wing them, the charge drops to malicious wounding, and a lesser penalty.
4. Instead of shoving drunks out the door of bars at a 1 or 2 a.m. closing time, why not keep them there until, say, 4? That way, the only other people on the road as they made their way home would be other drunks and cops.
Another possibility would be to have a back room with a mattress on the floor where the inebriated could sleep it off (for a fee, of course). Then they'd still have their car handy the next morning.
5. Two of my favorite TV news expressions:
When a vehicle skids off the highway, slides 200 feet on its top and crashes through the front of a convenience store, the anchorperson always intones: "The driver apparently lost control of the vehicle." Isn't that obvious?
Whenever a crime is committed, they always add the comment: "Police are investigating." As if the police would say: "You know, we're really swamped right now, so we've decided not to investigate this murder. I mean, nobody liked the guy, anyway."