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Along the Tracks

Northwest Ohio ... A small town editor's view of the big picture.

Updated: 2015-09-16T18:24:32.111-04:00




Tracks reach the stationAfter 4 1/2 years, Along the Tracks has reached a new destination.Readers have undoubtedly noted the increasing periods between posts here, and most probably also recognize the reason: and its blog, Newshound, take up most of my time and eat up most of my writing.I kept this blog active for the past year to hold my quick thoughts on national and world



Crank up the worry dialIsrael reportedly has identified the mode of attack on one of its ships in the Mediterranean off Lebanon. It was not a drone aircraft, as originally thought. It was an Iranian surface-to-ship missile which requires a certain amount of technical expertise. Israel is accusing Iran of direct involvement in this new war with Hezbollah.The pieces are all in place for a response



Allegations "absurd" - unfortunatelyA government official labeled claims "absurd" that the CIA was transporting large numbers of captured terrorists over European soil on secret flights.This was said in defense of the CIA. I'd call it an indictment.Of course, the idea that the CIA has the competence to capture enough al Qaeda jihadists to fill several jets is patently absurd. The idea that the



A Day without Illegal ImmigrantsWhile the mainstream media unsurprisingly focused on the “negative” aspects to the economy and the country of “A Day without (Illegal) Immigrants,” U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado pointed out some of the positives for his home state and a few other spots around the country.I discovered his column, courtesy of National Review, while researching this post. Below,



Powerful testimonial for 'United 93'I really want to see 'United 93.' That story of heroism has moved me more than anything else in the years since 9/11. The timing, frankly, would only be better if it had been released sooner.I hope this urgent reminder of who our enemy is - and how true American patriots respond - has not come to late for our distracted, wavering nation.The Wall Street Journal



Osama declares war yet againIn his latest tape, Osama bin Laden declares war on United Nations peacekeepers who might be sent to intervene in the Darfur region of Sudan.Since this is only the 10,000th time the al Qaeda leader has “declared war” on this or that particular nation, ethnic group, religion, Islamic faction, political organization or business, I won’t hold my breath waiting for all



In his latest tape, Osama bin Laden declares war on United Nations peacekeepers who might be sent to intervene in the Darfur region of Sudan.Since this is only the 10,000th time the al Qaeda leader has “declared war” on this or that particular nation, ethnic group, religion, Islamic faction, political organization or business, I won’t hold my breath waiting for all those who want us to “live in



10 listings for jobs Americans (apparently) won’t doWith the president and politicians from both sides of the aisle telling us we need illegal immigrants to do the jobs Americans won’t do, I decided to put together some employment listings to help along the process. * Wanted: Congress person who refuses to hold special private meetings on policy or legislation with anyone who is not a constituent



Holocaust promoter in academiaSuppose a think-tank conservative presented a speech to an audience of a couple hundred fellow conservatives advocating the spread of deadly diseases to kill off most of the world's population, so "intelligent people" like him and those gathered could inherit the earth.How would the media respond?I know, I hardly have to ask the question. We'd have wall-to-wall



Islam and the West, Part MMMLXIX...The case of Abdul Rahman, the Afghani who only recently escaped a capital trial over his conversion from Islam to Christianity, demonstrates that, if we aren't in the middle of an unavoidable "clash of civilizations," we are at least in the midst of a severe "sideswipe of civilizations."I recommend Mark Steyn to everyone on all occasions, but this column,



Observations on three years of warI've just read through Gregory Djerejian's recent thoughts, and those of his commenters, on where we find ourselves with Iraq, and how we got here.I wouldn't call myself a "regular" reader of the Belgravia Dispatch, but when I stop in, Djerejian usually has some worthwhile insights.He does here, too, but I think he gets a bit swept up in melancholy.Iraq is a mess



The Empire risesI laughed when they called the Bush administration an evil, empire-builder, but this choice has me worried they may have turned to the dark side.Compare:Secretary of the Interior nominee Dirk KempthornSith Lord and Evil Emporer PalpatineBut who's Yoda?



The new McCarthysAbout a month ago, I wrote a column on the Islamic World’s violent reaction to those cartoons of Mohammed published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten.My focus in that piece was on the need for moderate Muslims to step forward and “wrest control of their religion from the wild-eyed radicals” who threaten it. I added the point that the West, and particularly Americans, must



Birth cannot be considered an 'injury'The Ohio Supreme Court has made an interesting ruling which concerns abortion and the value of human life. I've posted on it over at Newshound.



OSU profs fighting for a special perkYou can charge them for their health care. You can put limits on their pensions. You can hold their salary increases to inflation plus umpteen percent.But don't you dare try to take their right to have sex with their students!Yeesh. I'm a pretty big Buckeye fan, but I don't think I'll ever let my kids go to school there.



Not a debate if you only give one sideAnyone doubting the media has an "agenda" when it comes to liberal hot-button issues like global warming need only read this post from Porkopolis and the accompanying links to be convinced.As I've written in this space before, the evidence suggests global warming indeed is occurring, but the correlation with CO2 levels is uncertain at best, and the claims



Not in my nameOrganized religion has been a tough thing for me to accept for most of my life. I consider myself a Christian, even rather devout. But I'm not a very regular church-goer, and I'm not really "officially" a member of any particular congregation.Since moving to Bryan over eight years ago, I've bounced in and out of a couple churches, but have been most at home with our local country



Riots over cartoons a stark demonstration of differencesIslamic culture, though rooted in the same Middle Eastern soil as Judaism and Christianity, and a substantial contributor to present Western culture through Middle Ages and Renaissance connections, carries some fundamental differences which occasionally come to light.(A quick aside: Terrorism is not one of those differences. Attacks on



The media's tunnel visionGranted, with a headline like that, I could be talking about anything.In this case, I'm talking about the Bob Woodruff coverage.First, a few points in defense of the mainstream media, particularly the networks. Even though journalists are supposed to step back from the emotions of their personal relationships when reporting news, that's not easy. The television reporters,



Stein's honesty refreshingI've got to say, I was a little disappointed reading Hugh Hewitt's interview with Joel Stein, columnist for the LA Times.Stein, of course, wrote Tuesday, "I don't support our troops," then explained precisely why he believes being "anti-war" yet "supporting the troops" is evasive and hypocritical.Frankly, he's right. What's more, he's pretty brave to come right out and



So Osama wants a truce, eh?As I’m sure you’ve heard by now, Osama bin Laden wants a truce.That’s right, al Qaeda’s uncompromising, “Death to the Great Satan!”-repeating leader would like a break in the action. Well, at least the action in his own backyard.According to Osama, there are massive attacks planned on the American homeland which will kill thousands of us infidels, cripple our brutal



A blogospheric appeal for reformGlenn Reynolds is promoting an effort by N.Z. Bear to get Republicans to commit to reforms as they choose a new majority leader in the U.S. House. I've commented on the post at The Truth Laid Bear:The present system of Congressional appropriation is in dire need of reform. Limiting earmarks and set-asides, more than any other action, will reverse lobbying's drift



'Book of Daniel' not badOn Friday night, I watched the opening double-episode of “The Book of Daniel” on NBC – the controversial new comedy-drama in which an Episcopal clergy member in a dysfunctional district struggles with both career and family with the help of occasional conversations with Jesus.Frankly, I was pleasantly surprised.A few words of caution are appropriate. The program, like most



Mainstream media doing its job(!)If I had a webcam - a frightening thought for Tracks visitors, I admit - the look on my face would have been stone-cold stunned as I read this story in the Chicago Tribune.The Tribune, a second-tier member of the mainstream media, actually sat down and studied the case for war against Iraq. In their words:We set out to assess the Bush administration's arguments



Medals of (dis)honor? contributing writer Lynn Thompson has a great column posted today on the effort of the "medals of (dis)honor" movement to rescind the Congressional Medals of Honor given to U.S. soldiers involved in the massacre at Wounded Knee in 1890.This is a tough call. As Lynn notes, the event was clearly a massacre. Yet, as it unfolded, soldiers took fire and, in the