LETTERS  PCR #252     (January 17--23, 2005)

  • Mike Smith responds to reader regarding Rumsfeld
  • Andy Lalino reviews recent PCR issues
  • Vin Blesi takes issue with The Ogre
  • Reader takes umbrage with my remarks about Rumsfeld

    Letters to the EditorWe welcome your feedback.


    Re: the reader who said "you are wrong" about Donald Rumsfeld. As someone who spent 6 years in the Army, let me tell you that what Donald Rumsfeld basically did was tell the soldiers in Iraq "fuck you!"

    To use the excuse "you go to war with the Army you have, not the Army you want" is tantamount to telling a child "I know you want milk, go drink horse piss." The fact that we have been in Iraq for over a year with vehicles that are not capable of helping to protect lives is unfathomable! Then Rumsfeld proved the fact that he is incompetent by reassuring the troops that, even with armor, they could still die. The writer fails to mention that the day after the incident was aired, the company manufacturing our vehicles pointed out that they had tried for months to convince the government that additional armor plating was needed. I'm guessing if Haliburton made the armor that every soldier in Iraq would have his own personal tank.

    My hats off to the soldier who had the balls to ask what everyone else wanted to. Not sure of the regulations now, but when I was in the service it was considered a violation of the Uniform Code of Military Justice for an officer to question any decision by the president or his staff, publicly or privately (though believe me I heard my share of griping behind the scenes about the job Jimmy Carter was doing). Not sure if it applied then, or now, to enlisted men. Thank you to the soldier who didn't care.

    Michael Smith


    Catching Up with Crazed Fanboy
    Hey, Nole; I thought I'd take a second to comment on a few things from the past 3 or so editions.

    Will's Great Adventure
    I'm going to miss Will not being around on a weekly basis on PCR, but I do wish him well as he embarks on production of his highly-anticipated "La Floridiana" tome. Put me down for a copy. Good luck, Will!

    TamBay R.I.P.
    Sad to hear about the demise of the TamBay film festival, which I thought was very well-done. I plead guilty in not being a regular attendee over the past few years since they've put it on, but I did go last year when "Filthy" was accepted. In 2003 I recall not being able to go due to other commitments at the time. With TamBay gone and the Saints & Sinners film festivals on hiatus, Tampa Bay is in desperate need of a (preferably) world-class film festival. My God, most every other city/town in Florida has a successful film festival (Sarasota, Ft. Lauderdale, Orlando, West Palm Beach, Melbourne, even Marco Island!) why don't we?!?

    Other Side Cinema meets Steckler/Hall Jr.
    Immensely enjoyed Mark Terry's article on his encounters with B-movie legends Ray Dennis Steckler and Arch Hall Jr. In fact, I wrote Mark and fellow Other Sider Vito Trabucco about their experience. Up until the article went live, I had never seen a recent picture of Steckler. I kind of expected him to be clean-shaven, crop-topped, and extremely skinny, so I was a little surprised at his appearance. Arch Hall Jr. still has the boy-ish face he was known for in the glory days. Fangoria ran an interview with Hall Jr. a few months back which included a few recent pictures of him, so I had the opportunity to see what he looked like. Seems like Vegas is the place to be if you want to see some legendary B-movie filmmakers (Ted V. Mikels lives there too)!

    Good luck to Mark, Vito, and Shelby McIntyre as they get "Holligan's Valley" rolling. Please keep us informed.

    Kelly Freas
    I too lament the passing of famed sci-fi/fantasy illustrator Kelly Freas. My fondest memories were his "Martian, Go Home" illustration and renditions of "What, Me Worry?".

    Lastly, thanks to Mike Smith for the great "General Cinema Theme" link and a belated happy birthday to N'sPCR writer Matt Drinnenberg!

    - Andy Lalino


    Once again I am disappointed in the quality of a PCR column, re: this week's "The Ogre". He could've saved us all a lot of wasted time by writing, "I hate Black History Month, and we are the same species, except for homosexuals", and been done with it. With such statements as, "African-Americans have a whole month to themselves" shows he is missing the point. First of all, Black History Month, despite its liberal do-gooder's facade, is really nothing more than a marketing campaign to market and sell products to Blacks. Personally I am offended that secretaries get a day (oops, I mean "administrative assistants"). And just because someone is white does not mean they cannot look into and celebrate the great accomplishments of African-Americans over history. Do you think the Black man is getting some secret society perks in February that we do not know about or are you just pissed that there was no garbage pickup on MLK day?

    Ogre goes on to say, "I, for one, think that they should include stories and general knowledge of not just what happened when the slaves came to America, but how they became slaves, what happened in Africa before we began the trading, who all were also working with slaves" They? Who are "they?". The big white conspiracy? How about Ogre doing some research and telling us some of these stories? I guess that would be too much like real writing and would require research and some work, something that slackers are not prone to do.

    Personally I think Black History Month should require all non-Africans to ride in the back of the bus, have to drink out of segregated water fountains, use segregated public toilets and have a cross burned in their front yards.

    In closing I think the only thing Ogre is banging is his hand when it slips.

    Drowning not waving,
    Vinnie Blesi


    The press has declared open season on Rumsfeld (Presumably Re: My message board topic "Donald Rumsfeld Needs To Go" ---N). His answers to the soldier's question (given to soldier by an embedded reporter riding with the soldier) were carefully edited by the media to exclude his first response. The media also carefully omits the fact that over 19,000 armored Humvees have been finished, and I think over 15,000 of them are already in Iraq.

    Rumsfeld did not verbally flip off the soldiers, he told them they were doing everything they could to increase production (or retrofitting) of armored vehicles. After that statement, you see his carefully edited by the media response, starting from the middle of his answer, but appearing to come right after the soldier's question. He (Rumsfeld) was unaware of the actual numbers.

    If you are continually publishing opinions, you should do better research, dude.

    Bruce Hammond

    Bruce, thank you for writing. I am well aware of the full content of Rumsfeld's answer to the soldier, it was published across many news websites. While it's true that the answer the media quoted is somewhat softened by reading it in context, I felt the excerpt conveyed the gist of the frustration nonetheless. The only thing I haven't heard is verification of this supposed "embedded reporter" who allegedly prompted the soldier's remarks.

    However....the subsequent outrage and attention focused on this situation proved very beneficial as the production of tanks did indeed improve afterwards.


    To send an email to Letters to the Editor write to: Crazedfanboy1@aol.com.  Any emails sent to this address will be assumed intended for publication unless you specifically instruct me not to. I can and do respond privately, if that is your preference. Frequently, it's both ways.---Nolan

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