And, I'm back.
Well, it appears that a lot has happened while I sunned myself on beautiful Trinity Bay in Newfoundland. DazzlinDino can now rest easy - we'll debating again soon!
Anyway, for those who are interested, I was able to complete the following while I was away:
Hells Angels by Dr. Hunter S. Thompson - His first foray into gonzo journalism and its a fantastic read. Of course, Thompson could write a cook book and I'd read it. He's a fantastic writer.
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown - The actual writing in this book was terrible and sophmoric. But it has one hell of a plot that is, despite what the Catholic Church says, is based on historical facts (I have read much of his shocking facts before, elswhere). Brown can take these facts and sew them together into a great story. Now, if he could learn to write like Thompson, he'd be one of the greats.
Ghost Wars by Steven Coll - This is a fantastic historical examination of the CIA and its involvement in Afghanistan from 1979 to September 10, 2001. If you want to know the context of Al Queda and terrorism today, you need to read this book. Coll lays it out there, bare for all to see, how the cottling of Islamic fundenmentalist by the CIA under Reagan and their funding by Pakistani and Saudi intelligence comunities created the problem we all face today. It is also a stinging indictment of both the Clinton and Bush administration's lack of action on Al Queda, placing more importance on business relationships than on fighting terror and the misssteps of various intelligence organizations when they did try to do something. If you claim to talk about Al Queda "hating us for our freedoms" but haven't read this, you don't know what you are talking about. Coll also provides close to 200 pages in footnotes, citing personal interviews and other primary sources, in case you think he's a liberal shill.
Anyway, once I get caught up reading the happenings in other blogs and getting settled into work, I'm sure I'll have a post to share.
And for those that care, I'm still reading Secrets and Lies by Bruce Schneier. I intend to pick up and read his other book Beyond Fear, about security in general and The Coming Dark Age, by Jane Jacobs.