Monday, June 27, 2005

Piglet and Tigger are dead

Paul Winchell, the ventriloquist creator of the puppet Jerry Mahoney, who later became famous as the animated voice of Tigger, Winnie-the-Pooh's exuberant friend, died on Friday, June 24 at his home in Moorpark, Calif. He was 82. Mr. Winchell not only gave Tigger a voice to match his bounce in the animated versions of A. A. Milne's classic, but also his signature phrase, "Ta-ta for now.

John Fiedler, who played character roles in celebrated dramas on Broadway and in Hollywood but gained lasting fame among young audiences as the voice of Piglet in Walt Disney's Winnie-the-Pooh films, died on Saturday, June 25. He was 80.

Whoever provided the voices for Eeyore, Kanga, Roo, Christopher Robin or Winnie the Pooh should get a check-up right away.

Meanwhile, back to reality...

As part of our childhoods were dying over the weekend, four suicide bomb attacks struck Iraqi police and an Iraqi Army base in a 16-hour wave of insurgent violence in the northern city of Mosul on Saturday and Sunday, killing 38 people and wounding scores more. The Mosul attacks came as Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld echoed remarks by his advisers in recent months suggesting that the insurgency could last as long as a dozen years and that Iraq would become more violent before elections later this year. The rate of insurgent attacks remains steady, but the typical attack has grown more lethal, Mr. Rumsfeld said on "Fox News Sunday."

On the other hand, the insurgency in Iraq is "in the last throes," Vice President Dick Cheney said, and he predicts that the fighting will end before the Bush administration leaves office. A dozen years or 3? The insurgency is steady or in its "last throes?"

"We're going to have to make some changes or we will lose, we will lose in Iraq." That's Sen. Chuck Hagel - Republican saying this stuff noting Iraq could "end up another Vietnam." You'll remember it was Hagel who said, "Things aren't getting better; they're getting worse. The White House is completely disconnected from reality. It's like they're just making it up as they go along. The reality is that we're losing in Iraq."

And if WMD claims, "cakewalk predictions", Valerie Plame, Mission Accomplished, looting, billions of dollars gone missing, lack of armor, stop-loss orders, army recruiting goals not met or anyone of a dozen other depressing stories hasn't shocked you this one might. There are reports that the US is in talks with Iraq rebels. The Iraqi sources claim the American team included senior military and intelligence officers, a civilian staffer from Congress and a representative of the US embassy in Baghdad. On the rebel side were representatives of insurgent groups including Ansar al-Sunna, which has carried out numerous suicide bombings and killed 22 people in the dining hall of an American base at Mosul last Christmas. Also represented was the so-called Islamic Army in Iraq, which murdered Enzo Baldoni, an Italian journalist, last August; the Iraqi Liberation Army; Jaish Mohammed and other smaller factions. Rumsfeld seemed to confirm talks but wouldn't truly comment on it.

I guess "no negotiation with terrorists" can be added to the list of things that as you grow up you find out aren't really true.

The most wonderful thing about Tigger is that he's the only one. The most awful thing about this administration is that there are so many officials who make it up as they go along and every one else will have to pay for that.


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